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Showing posts from May, 2011

Author Gathers Reasons Why Employees Leave For Updated Book

Overland Park, KS-based author Leigh Branham is conducting a survey called,"Decision-to- Leave" Post-Exit Survey. He will incorporate the collected data into an updated and revised version of his popular book, The 7 Hidden Reasons Employees Leave, first published in 2005.

Survey respondents are asked to share with Branham the real reasons they chose to leave a previous job.
To provide your input, go to Keeping The People, then click on Resources, then Surveys, then the Decision-to-Leave Survey.
In July, Branham will report preliminary results based on results received at that time, including: a breakdown of responses on 40 reasons employees leavehow they fit into the 7 "buckets"and the implications for employee re-engagement.When asked why he wrote his book, Branham said, "I kept seeing research studies reporting that managers thought money was the number one reason employees leave, and I knew that wasn't the case."

"Overall, our research for the…

5 Quotes For The Day

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Some of my favorite quotes for leaders are:

A good leader takes a little more than his share of the blame, a little less than his share of the credit -- Arnold H. GlasgowI praise loudly, I blame softly -- Catherine II of RussiaHonest disagreement is often a good sign of progress -- Mohandas GandhiA long dispute means that both parties are wrong -- VoltaireThe least questioned assumptions are often the most questionable -- Paul Broca These and many more compelling quotes can be found in Susan H. Shearouse's new book, Conflict 101.

Book Review: Full Engagement By Brian Tracy

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Best-selling author Brian Tracy's newest book, Full Engagement, provides practical advice for how to inspire your employees to perform at their absolute best.  He explains that above nearly every measure, employees' most powerful single motivator is the "desire to be happy".

So, Tracy teaches you how to make your employees happy by:
Organizing their work from the first step in the hiring process through the final step in their departure from your company so they are happy with you, their work, their coworkers, as well as in their interactions with your customers, suppliers and vendors.Full Engagement includes these chapters and topics:
The Psychology of MotivationIgnite the Flame of Personal PerformanceMake People Feel ImportantDrive Out FearCreate That Winning FeelingSelect The Right PeopleInternal Versus External Motivation At a minimum, Tracy suggests that managers do the following when managing their employees:
SmileAsk questionsListenBe politeSay "Thank You&q…

Dig Deep For Ideas

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The next time you are looking for ideas for how to grow revenue, streamline processes and procedures and/or reduce expenses, dig deep within your organization. Don't ask only your direct reports for their suggestions. Instead, ask everyone at all levels. Some of the best ideas will come from your lower and mid-level employees who are interacting with your vendors, customers and co-workers every day in the very areas that, if improved, could make the most dramatic impact. Be sure to acknowledge receipt of each idea. Keep everyone informed of the types of ideas you've received. Perhaps update them on a monthly basis. When you implement a suggestion, recognize and reward the submitter, including possibly financially. Feel free to accept ideas anonymously. But, if employees know you are sincere about wanting their input, and witness you acting upon suggestions, most of your team members will be proud to tie their names to their ideas. Finally, if there are some of the …

How To Be A Good Coach. How To Be A Bad Coach.

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Former Verizon Wireless CEO, Denny F. Strigl offers these tips for how to be a good coach to an employee.  He explains that good coaches help performers by:

Keeping them focused.Giving them objective, helpful feedback.Acting as a sounding board for new approaches.Identifying blind spots that may be holding the performer back.Reinforcing key values, principles, and behaviors that improve performance.Recognizing positive behavior and performance.Providing encouragement after setbacks and failuresSetting "stretch" goals.Acting as an accountability partner. Strigl believes that some managers fail in their coaching roles because they:
View coaching as babysitting.See coaching as only correcting performance.Don't spend enough time with their employees.Are reluctant to criticize.Have social relationships with their employees.Have a "sink-or-swim" philosophy.Believe coaching is not helpful or meaningful. "Coaching may actually save time by preventing extensive retr…

Why Giving Positive Feedback Is Better Than Giving Priase

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There is an important difference between giving your employees positive feedback and giving them praise.

Positive feedback focuses on the specifics of job performance. Praise, often one-or two-sentence statements, such as “Keep up the good work,” without positive feedback leaves employees with empty feelings. 

Worse yet, without positive feedback, employees feel no sense that they are appreciated as individual talents with specific desires to learn and grow on the job and in their careers, reports Nicholas Nigro, author of, The Everything Coaching and Mentoring Book.
So, skip the praise and give positive feedback that is more uplifting to your employees because it goes to the heart of their job performance and what they actually do. An example of positive feedback is:
“Bob, your communications skills have dramatically improved over the past couple of months. The report that you just prepared for me was thorough and concise. I appreciate all the work you’ve put into it, a…

How To Select A Good Executive Coach

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When a leader or manager is considering using an executive coach, Marilyn O'Hearne, Master Certified Coach in the Kansas City metro area, said that person should at a minimum: Make sure the coach is certified and subscribes to a code of ethics.Ask for referrals about the coaches you are evaluating.Read testimonials on websites and on LinkedIn about the coaches.Have an introductory, no-obligation phone conversation with the prospective coaches.Discuss with the prospective coaches their experience and training.O'Hearne started executive coaching in 1998 and served as one of the Vice Presidents of the Board of Directors of the International Coach Federation, which has over 15,000 members in 92 countries. "Coaching will benefit any executive who wants to become a more effective leader," said O'Hearne. "Especially useful times to engage a coach are when a leader is moving or preparing to move into a new executive position, and when there is a me…

Former Verizon Wireless CEO Teaches Leadership Lessons In New Book

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Former Verizon Wireless CEO Denny F. Strigl offers a revealing insight into how he led the company in his new book, Managers, can you hear me now? -- co-authored by Frank Swiatek.

Strigl shares all the skills and techniques he used at Verizon to shape the company's corporate culture where he says he:
Built trust, respect and integrityReinforced prioritiesDrove accountabilityManaged distractionsSet a mindset of successCreated a culture of performanceEach chapter of the 202-page book includes:
Chapter summary pointsAction guideSelf-assessment questionsStrigl says he taught managers and leaders within Version to build trust with their employees by:
Saying what they meant and meaning what they saidSeeking input and feedback from their teamsTreating people with dignityBeing dependable in meeting commitmentsCreating clear focus and objectives for employeesCreating a climate of open, honest, and direct communicationOther leadership tips that Strigl offers in his book include:
When result…

How To Build Trust

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You can't lead if your employees, team or followers don't trust you. 

Building trust takes energy, effort and constant attention to how you act.  To help build trust, follow these 16 tips, recommended by author Susan H. Shearouse:
Be honestKeep commitments and keep your wordAvoid surprisesBe consistent with your moodBe your bestDemonstrate respectListenCommunicateSpeak with a positive intentAdmit mistakesBe willing to hear feedbackMaintain confidencesGet to know othersPractice empathySeek input from othersSay "thank you"

Book Review: Conflict 101

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Handling conflict is one of the most difficult things a leader has to deal with.  Unfortunately, conflict in the workplace is inevitable. 
In fact, research shows that 42 percent of a manager's time is spent addressing conflict.  And, over 65 percent of performance problems are caused by employee conflicts. Managers new in their leadership role typically have had little to no training on how to deal with conflict.

Fortunately, in Susan H. Shearouse's new book, Conflict 101, you can learn:
How conflict is createdHow we respond to conflictHow to management conflict more effectively Shearouse explains that even though conflict is inevitable, it can lead to both growth and progress.  "There is little progress that is not preceded by some kind of conflict," says Shearouse.

I found particularly helpful in the book the definitions of the following five different types of conflict and then how best to deal with each:
Problems to solveDisagreementContestFight Intractable situa…

Learning What Each Other Does Builds A Stronger Team

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Having your employees learn more about what their fellow employees do is invaluable. When everyone knows how each job/position on your team fits together, your team can accomplish so much more. Plus, the new-found knowledge drives a better appreciation for what everyone does, and proves to the team, that success comes only when all the pieces fit together like a well-oiled machine.

So, plan a half day where you pair up employees. Once paired, one employee explains to his (or her) partner what he does in a "typical" day. Allow enough time for sharing samples of his work and for Q&A.

Then, it's the second person's turn to share about their "typical" day. If your half day is a morning, suggest the pairs of employees have lunch together, where they can finish by incorporating more discussion about away-from-work hobbies and interests. Schedule your job learning days for once a month and have your employees meet with different partners each time…

Leadership Quotes For The Day

Some of my favorite quotes for leaders:
A good leader takes a little more than his share of the blame, a little less than his share of the credit -- Arnold H. GlasgowI priase loudly, I blame softly -- Catherine II of RussiaHonest disagreement is often a good sign of progress -- Mohandas GandhiIf you don't know where you are going, any road will take you there -- Lewis Carroll