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Showing posts from February, 2017

What Is Your Life Word?

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You're likely making progress with your New Year's resolutions and goals for 2017. I am. Plus, I recently discovered and read the new book, Life Word, and because of that I have also now selected my one Life Word. The one word that as the book authors say will significantly impact my life and legacy.

Life Word shows you the three-step process for how to identify your Live Word and the "why" behind that word so you can live with a renewed sense of power, purpose and passion.
Your Life Word becomes the driving force to align your efforts and eliminate distractions. And, by living your Life Word you create your legacy, defined by what you leave behind that lives on in others. Your legacy is always about the lives we touch and the people we influence. And, as the authors explain, the value of your life and your legacy is revealed in the stories that those who were most important to you--those who knew you best--will tell.

In less than 100-pages and something you can read …

Insights On Change

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Change is inevitable. Change is good.  Help your employees and team learn to embrace change.

Here are some solid insights from Dr. Rodger Dean Duncan's (Liberty, Missouri) book, Change-friendly Leadership -- How to Transform Good Intentions into Great Performance:
The kind of behavior change that results in lasting (sustainable) change must accommodate people's feelings--feelings that involve trust, confidence, passion, and all those other intangible but very real things that make us human.It's often the stress that people resist, not the change itself.Continuity gives us roots; change gives us branches, letting us stretch and grow and reach new heights (Pauline R. Kezer).A transformational leader focuses primarily on initiating and "managing" change.  He/she influences people to improve, to stretch, and to redefine what's possible.It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change (Charles Dar…

How To Lead Your Boss

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The Courage Solution, a book by Mindy Mackenzie, is all about the simple truth that the only thing you can reliably change or control is yourself. So, that is why Mackenzie wrote her book -- to teach you how to take actions that ultimately will improve your impact on the job and increase your happiness and fulfillment in your career.

Mackenzie's quick-read strategies focus on these four key areas:
Part 1: You First offers techniques to take ownership and accountability for creating a career and life you love.Part 2: Lead Your Boss describes proven techniques to transform your relationship with your boss.Part 3: Lead Your Peers provides methods for accelerating positive peer relationships to improve business results.Part 4: Lead Your Team gives approaches for generating and creating the most effective teams and having more fun while doing it.

Mindy Mackenzie
A preview of Mackenzie's advice on  Leading Your Boss includes: Intensely study your boss to get to know the human being be…

Eight Company Culture Guidelines

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"The clearer your company culture, the less likely it will be hijacked by the weaker personalities in your team," explains Mary Christensen, author of the book, Be A Network Marketing Leader. "A few guidelines will ensure a level playing field for all team members as they pursue their individual goals."

Christensen's recommended eight guidelines are:
We respect each other.We support each other.We appreciate everyone's contribution.We're always professional.We operate in a spirit of fun and friendship.We keep it positive.We're a gossip-free zone.We deal with our disagreements in private.

How To Make Small Changes To Achieve Extraordinary Results

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“Making small changes to reach big goals is the answer,” says entrepreneur and bestselling author Michael Alden in his book, 5% MORE: Making Small Changes To Achieve Extraordinary Results. “If you just put 5% more effort into any aspect of your life, you will not only achieve your goals, you will surpass them,” he explains. 
“Far too often, people become paralyzed when they want to improve their lives, because the effort to reach their goals seems overwhelming,” adds Alden. “Or the opposite occurs. They decide to dive into something one hundred percent, but then quickly lose steam.”
Therefore, Alden demonstrates that long-lasting success is based on small increases in effort. “Five percent is almost unnoticeable in terms of effort—but it accrues quickly, with each step boosting the baseline,” he declares.
Although much of Alden’s advice is based on personal experience, observation, and common sense, he is careful to discuss the studies and research that support his ideas throughout t…

How To Be Humble

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From John Blakey's new book, The Trusted Executive, published just a couple weeks ago, here are these four tips from Jim Collins for how to be a humble leader:
Demonstrate a compelling modesty, shunning public adulation and never be boastful.Act with quiet, calm determination and motivate others through inspired standards, not inspiring charisma.Channel ambition into the company, not the self, and set up successors for even more greatness in the next generation.Look in the mirror, not out of the window, when apportioning responsibility for poor performance.

How To Show You Value Your Employees

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There are eight specific actions business leaders can take to show that they value their employees, according to Andrew Leigh, author of the bookEthical Leadership -- Creating and Sustaining an Ethical Business Culture.

Those eight behaviors are: Attention -- Pay attention to what people say to show your interest.Listen -- Make time to hear what colleagues, peers and employees have to say to show you care.Positive Language -- Find words and phrases to show employees they're needed.  Examples are, "We couldn't have accomplished this without you," "That was really useful."Document -- Put praise in writing to increase its impact.  Make clear where the credit belongs.Micro Sessions -- Create two-way communication sessions.Visits -- Schedule visits to teams and work areas.Stories -- Share stories that highlight unusual contributions and provide your personal response to them.Invite -- Ask people to contact you directly with their issues and concerns -- not to …

The Three Key Activities Of Strategic Thinking

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From the book, Leading With Strategic Thinking, the three key activities that comprise strategic thinking are:

Assessing situations Recognizing patternsMaking decisions

The Elements Of A Good Culture For A Digital Team

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About two years ago, Shane Atchison and Jason Burby wrote an interesting book about the principals needed for delivering true business value in digital marketing.

One of the most helpful sections of the book, Does it Work?, is the list of elements they believe are the most important for building a good culture where a digital team can be flexible, work together great, and move seamlessly to new ideas and process.

Those elements are:

Stay flexible. Encourage thinking outside roles. Don't let job titles limit individual contributions.Hire learners. Your team should be curious and willing to learn new things.Empower people to share. Everyone's opinion matters.Make sure problems come with solutions. Don't let whiners complain about what is wrong without bringing proposed solutions to address the problem.Foster a culture of achievement. Provide real data that clearly demonstrates to your team that they are making a difference and accomplishing something.

How To Create A Culture That Supports Workplace Wellness

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In 2016, the Wellness Council of America named Lance Breger as one of the Top 50 Health Promotion Professionals in the U.S..

Today, Lance shares his recommendations for how a business leader can create a culture that supports workplace employee wellness.

Lance Breger
Question: What are two to three things a leader can do to create a culture of wellness at their workplace?

Lance: Livingby example is the single very greatest thing a leader can do to create a culture of wellness. Be the change you want to see in the workplace. Even the small wellness efforts are noticed like bringing a water bottle to meetings, making good food choices, leaving the office on-time, unplugging on weekends, using a standing desk and taking the stairs. 
Question: What else can a leader do to demonstrate he/she values wellness for their employees?
Lance: A leader can name health and well-being as a core value of the company, department and even team. This can be positively reinforced through a staff-wide communicat…

14 Tips For Establishing The Need To Change And To Create A Sense Of Urgency

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Stacking the Deck: How to Lead Breakthrough Change Against Any Odds, is as relevant today as it was when published two years ago. That's because the pace of change in business is just as fast as it was two years ago.

Unfortunately, even when business leaders know they need to make changes at their company, many struggle with how to start making that change. And, how to create a sense of urgency around that need.

Author David S. Pottruck offers these 14 action items for establishing the need to change and a sense of urgency. Ask these questions and take these steps:

What is your company's mission statement? Do employees believe the company is committed to this mission?What is your perspective on the problem you need to solve or the opportunity you need to capture?What evidence do you have of this problem or opportunity?How is this problem or opportunity connected to the company's purpose and mission?Define your stakeholders (customers, employees, leadership, shareholders, ve…

What To Look For When Interviewing Job Candidates

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Here is some great job candidate interviewing advice from Doug Chavez, Global Head of Marketing Research & Content, Kenshoo, as quoted in the book, Does it Work?

"When interviewing candidates, I look beyond pure smarts, since we can filter for that...I look for the 'fire in the belly' and if the person has a curious personality and a history of curiosity in their career path. Candidates with a strong sense of curiosity always end up having a great conversation instead of an interview."




Leadership Step By Step

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Yes, it will take you some time to read Joshua Spodek's new book, Leadership Step by Step. Yes, it will be a little like doing "homework." Yes, this is a book you'll read and likely need to revisit a few times for the concepts to fully sink in. Yes, this is a book you must read if you want to become the person others will follow.

The time and effort you put into, Leadership Step by Step, will be well worth it!

Spodek guides you through what to do and how to do it in an integrated and comprehensive progression of exercises designed to cultivate key abilities, behaviors, and beliefs through experiences.

The progression contains four units:

Understanding YourselfLeading YourselfUnderstanding OthersLeading Others Each chapter within the four units provides you: Hands-on ExercisesReflection QuestionsPost-Exercise Observations "By the time you finish the book, you'll have competed 22 exercises." explains Spodek, who is an Adjunct Professor at NUY and a lecturer…

Gain Versus Prevent Pain

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Today's leadership advice comes from the 2014 book, Decide:

"Tasks that you are driven toward by Gain produce more significant positive results in your life and your business than tasks that you are driven toward by Prevent Pain."

And, before you hold your next meeting at work, remember that a "Gain focused meeting will move your business forward versus a Prevent Pain meeting, which will simply keep you from falling behind."

16 Tips For Building Trust As A Leader

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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"

The Elements Of An Effective Corporate Culture

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Fortunately, most of my career I’ve worked in effective corporate cultures. If I put together the best of each, here is what made those environments effective:

•  Leaders led by example on a consistent basis and were willing to roll up their sleeves, particularly during tight deadlines or challenging times.

•  Employees clearly understood how what they did made a difference and how their contributions made the organization more profitable and/or more effective.

•  The workforce included a blend of long-term employees with a rich company, product/service and customer history; employees who had been at the company for five to seven years;and then new hires with a fresh perspective and keen sense of new technologies and techniques. That blend worked best when the mix included virtually all A-players.

•  Top managers had a clear, realistic and strategic vision for how the company would grow and compete in the marketplace.

•  Employees were challenged and rewarded through growth opportuni…

When Change Is Good

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"Change is disturbing when it is done to us, exhilarating when it is done by us." - Rosabeth Moss Kanter.

How To Increase Profits Through Gender-Balanced Leadership

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"While the global population is largely gender balanced, men hold eighty-five percent of senior leadership positions in public companies," states Melissa Greenwell, author of the new book, Money on the Table: How to Increase Profits Through Gender-balanced Leadership.

Furthermore, Greenwell shares that at the current rate of change, most readers of her book this year will be dead before gender balance hits fifty percent.

And, the fact of the matter is, explains Greenwell, "Hardwiring in the brain is different for men and women. The physical differences are associated with natural tendencies in thinking, communicating, and problem-solving that are all needed in business. Men and women demonstrate these traits in varying degrees. Successful organizations have leaders who exhibit the characteristics of both genders."

Melissa Greenwell
"You are leaving money on the table and forfeiting your strategic advantage if you don't have women well represented on your b…

What Coaches Do To Drive Success

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Former University of Kansas head basketball coach Roy Williams once told U.S. News and World Reportmagazine that there are three things that coaches as leaders must do to drive success:
"Have everyone on the team focus on the same goal."  And, the leader must effectively communicate that goal to the team."Emphasize those goals every day.""Understand that although everyone has a common goal, individuals also have goals, needs and dreams that must be cared for." According to Williams, in a commentary he wrote for the magazine, the third point is the most challenging to address and where leadership may be the most critical. And, I totally agree.

Therefore, if you lead a team at work or within an organization, one of the best ways to work with each of your team players is to tailor your motivation techniques for each individual, and then be prepared to tweak those techniques if necessary as each person grows.

Williams was the head coach at the University of K…