Roses are red
Violets are blue
I'm on a mission
And so are you
I love you because:
You trust me
You are generous
You laugh at my jokes
You treat me with respect
We learn from one another
You understand the value I bring
You want to get out of your own way
You want and pay for my experience
You are curious and believe in our process
You believe people make all the difference
You are creative and smart and I admire you for that
You speak highly of me to your colleagues, partners, network.
Thank you for your trust
Thank you for being vulnerable and allowing me to support you
Thank you for helping me to grow my business
Thank you for inviting me to help you to grow yours.
We are better together,
I believe the decision to give those around us a greater sense of empowerment is what differentiates a good leader from a great one. Here are a few questions to help determine where you are along that journey.
6 signs that you are discouraging more than empowering those around you (and how to address them).
Q. Do you feel responsible for having all the answers?
This is a well-known symptom of not being able to let go. The instinct to help others solve their problems is a strong one; the thing is, how can you be expected to know all of the answers? You may have an answer but is it the best answer?
A. Ask yourself - who is more informed about this than I am?
Q. Are you asking for input but not really listening?
We've all been there, we are asked for our opinions or ideas but nothing comes of it. Why ask if they aren't going to do anything with it? I'm not talking about the Company-wide Engagement Survey (that's a whole subject to itself) but rather in a team meeting or one-on-one conversation. If you ask for feedback (which is a great first step!) are you really open to different ideas?
A. Ask yourself - How can I show my team that I have heard them?
Q. Does your team disagree with you?
If people are hesitant to show that they disagree with you, they likely don't feel they can be open with their ideas. This can be a result of people not feeling safe enough to share their difference of opinions and worry that expressing themselves could have negative impacts.
A. Ask yourself - What can I do to build trust?
Q. Are you doing most of the talking?
Sharing information is necessary, however, do you get to the end of your meeting and ask for input and get nothing but *crickets*? This could indicate that your approach is more of a one way street. There may be an approach to take that will get people sharing their expertise and ideas that you hadn't thought of.
A. Ask yourself - What can I implement that will create two-way dialogue?
Q. Do you need to take control to get the results you need?
When we don't take the time to develop the functionality of a team it won't work well when the usual conditions change. They grow to expect things a certain way rather than knowing how to excel in self-managed situations. This not only puts you as the leader in a very inflexible (and stressful) position but it also doesn't create the conditions for trust and empowerment.
A. Ask yourself - What can I teach my team that will increase their collective effectiveness?
Consider your answers to these questions. If you answered yes, you have an opportunity to implement new approaches that could not only have a tremendous impact on your team effectiveness and their morale but also your abilities as a great leader. One of the most frustrating states a person can be in is when they don't feel valued for their opinions or trusted to provide their expertise. You have the ability to change that by acknowledging these signs and building your competency of empowerment. I truly believe that one of the keys to team and individual success is through enabling those around us to thrive.
Have your priorities shifted? How to go from "On hold" to "Completed" even in these uncertain times.
Here we are a few weeks into "our new normal" the shock is starting to wear off and our reality is settling in. We don't know what the next few weeks and months will bring but we do know life - and business - must go on. So, how do we continue to strive to meet our objectives while it seems pretty impossible? The vision for how we meet those objectives may no longer work. Do we put those on hold or do we look at them differently? Well, it's not one size fits all, that's for sure. Each organization and person are different and your goals are unique. I would like to offer an approach intended to get you reflecting on your very own circumstances and get you closer to your best next step.
Stephen Covey says it best: "Begin With the End in Mind" in his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. When we consciously decide what we want our outcomes to be we are able to develop a "blueprint" in our minds. This conscious vision is what helps to reduce the likelihood you will need to repeat, circle back or duplicate your efforts - or those of your team - thereby reducing the likelihood of spending more time and money.
Whether your priorities remain the same as they were at the start of 2020 or if they have changed since COVID-19 has impacted the way we work and play, it is HOW we will accomplish our goals - the blueprint - that has thrown us a serious curve ball. This is where I suggest we shift our thinking for this new blueprint.
When considering your top priority, try to picture where you want be in three months. Take a moment to create a detailed picture of the end state you envision (who, what, where, when) in order to then walk through the planning process of the new blueprint.
Ask yourself the following questions (I suggest writing down your answers):
For example: Were you going to get together to negotiate? Did you plan to make new sales? Were you going to conduct a workshop to attract new business? Were you to develop a strategic plan? Were you going to change jobs?
The specifics of what need to change don't necessarily need to have a negative impact on your priority. You may need to shift a deadline or adjust your messaging, but your vision will still come to fruition. Anyone who has worked with me knows that I often use the expression "baby steps". This is my way of breaking-down many steps into manageable, bite-sized pieces. This can be especially helpful in times of high stress when we want to reduce complexity and increase focus.
Now ask your self the following questions designed to help you break-down your steps into manageable pieces:
Stay healthy and please reach out if I can be of any support to you in your journey.