Are You Fighting Fires or Tending To Your Garden?

by blogadmin 10. November 2017 02:23

How many disasters have you dealt with this week? How many relationships had to be rescued? Who had to redo their work, explain numbers, or cut corners?

Leaders and professionals, ask yourself this: Are you nearing or at a point where firefighting is standard operating procedure? If so, things were not done right the first time around. Too often, businesses get stuck in the vicious cycle of rework, shortcuts, and lengthened deadlines. This puts them at risk for stressed-out employees, customer problems, a damaged brand, and ethics issues. How then do we change our leadership and working style from the on-edge firefighter to that of the happy gardener?
 
The happy gardener has done his or her best to nurture their plants the minute the seed was placed in the ground. Careful watering, weeding, pruning, and cultivating leads to fruit, flowers, and a lush garden. In the same way, high producing and results oriented employees thrive when nurtured by great leaders and fellow team members. Just as in a seed, there is great potential inside of everyone, and great leaders help bring it out in 4 ways according to Terry Lee: training, connecting, challenging, and coaching.
 
1. TRAINING
 Great leaders know that effective training is how to marry existing knowledge with the strategy of a company. Working with team members to identify what training is going to position them to be most successful now and in the future is crucial. Prior to training, leaders should sit down with team members to discuss goals, expectations, and takeaways from the training. Upon finishing, leaders should again meet with team members to implement action planning while the information is still fresh. Post training meetings turn ideas into action.
 
2.  CONNECTING
Helping team members connect the dots in another action of great leaders. Help others to understand why each area or department is extremely important to the mission of the company. Great leaders understand the whole mission and are adept at articulating that message in a consistent, authentic, and relative manner. 
 
3.  CHALLENGING
Extrinsic motivation - public praise, more money, and prizes aren't enough to motivate team members. Intrinsic motivation - purpose, autonomy, and mastery are just as important. Mastery implies the opportunity to really get good at something. In order to be really good at something, you must be presented with challenges that excite you to find the solution. And, solutions satisfy purpose.
 
4.  COACHING
When faced with challenges, it's good to have a good "guide on the side" to help you through. Great leaders, helpful colleagues, and insightful coaches meet you where are. They help you identify what options you may have to reach goals and then sets appropriate challenges to lead you to that success.
 
So, to help your company sustain focus and build for the long-term, the firefighting leader, instead of being an impulsive judge, will become more like a gardener, counseling, guiding, and connecting with team members on a day-to-day basis, learning from them and with them.
 
Personal Application:
-Have you defined clearly to your team members what you are promising to deliver to your customers, so they know what they should strive to deliver?
-How often do you come up with poorly thought out quick fixes that consume time, leave less time for core work, and cause confusion about expectations?
-What steps can you take today to train, guide, and nurture rather than judge, add checkpoints, or escalate issues?

Hey Leaders! Do You Really Want More Power?

by blogadmin 2. November 2017 04:46

Have you met that rising leader or team member that is always right? Or one that drains the energy from the meeting? Research shows that increasing personal power actually begins to interfere with our ability to empathize. Berkely social psychology professor Dacher Keltner found that subjects under the influence of power became more impulsive, less risk-aware, and crucially, less adept at seeing things from other people's point of view. 

In fact, power can actually change how the brain functions according to Canadian neuroscience researcher Sukhvinder Obhi. His study finds power primes our brain to screen out peripheral information. How does it happen?

Slowly and then suddenly. It happens with bad little choices, making isolated decisions and then throwing one's weight around shows up. Demands for special treatment might be the big finish. We've all heard about leaders who've been pulled over and become indignant yelling, "Do you know who I am?!" They reach a point where their power was once helpful to others has turned to power motivated by self-interest.

What can leaders do to keep their power in check? They must invite others in and ask for feedback from a wide variety of people. Don't be afraid to ask employees and colleagues the tough questions. Start with these:

-Are you keeping the small, inconvenient promises that fall outside of the spotlight?

-Do you keep people around you that help you stay down to earth? 

-Are you the same person at home, work and in the spotlight? 

-Do you get defensive when an employee or team member offers you a suggestion? 

-Do you isolate yourself in the decision-making process? 

-Do your decisions reflect your values? 

-Do you admit your mistakes?

-Do you demand special privileges?

 Lastly, a good executive coach or mentor can help you keep or return to the state of empathy and value-driven decisions. 

 

Become Confident: Silence The Self-Doubt

by blogadmin 25. October 2017 03:18

Confidence is a key part of success in business. It is about having trust in what you know and your abilities to handle unexpected events that happen in all facets of your life. It is that unexplainable and untouchable attribute that allows you to get in touch with that inner self and allows you to express yourself fully. The good news is that confidence is a trait that can be strengthened over time. Review these 9 Ways To Show More Confidence:

1. Package yourself for success. When you look the part, you'll carry  yourself with more confidence. Dress for the occasion.

2. Correct your posture. Poor posture may make you appear insecure, disinterested, or lazy. Don't slouch in meetings or with clients and colleagues. 

3. Do your best to worry less. Don't stress about what others think about you. Negative self-talk can quickly make you feel as though others are evaluating every error and misstep you make. Focus on the things you do well and give the assignment and credit to others that do things better than you.

4. Focus on the future. If you find yourself caught in the minutia of daily business, remind yourself to think about your dreams on focus on your goals.

5. Embrace positivity. Show gratitude for small acts of kindness and be appreciative of those around you. If you make a habit of being positive and grateful, it will become second nature.

6. Let go of small mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes so don't expect to be perfect or you'll drive yourself and others crazy. If you make a mistake with a client or colleague, take responsibility. Apologize and move forward. 

7. Continue to grow and improve. A small accomplishment can help boost your confidence, even if it's not entirely related to your business. Learn a new skill, read a new book, or take a class. Invest in yourself.

8. Schedule time to play. If you put in a lot of work hours and never take time to rest,  you'll eventually push yourself towards burnout and your attitude will suffer. Make sure to take your lunch break and set aside time to do the things you love in life.

9. Don't be afraid to ask for advice. Whenever you find yourself in an epic struggle against self-doubt or insecurity, call a trusted friend, advisor, or colleague and get his or her best advice. Often an objective opinion will help you look at life differently, overcome your challenges, and boost your confidence.

Making the work on building self-confidence could actually affect the success in your life. It is an important decision!

Personal Application:

-Do you put yourself in positions to pretend to be what you are not? If so, why do you err to over-advocating for yourself instead of being genuine? What steps can you take today, to do your best and worry less?

-When is the last time you've read an industry related or self-help book or taken a class or seminar? What holds you back from learning something new and improving your work skills?

-Does asking for advice make you feel uncomfortable? How so? Will you challenge yourself to learn from others?

  

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