Once you accept the role of leader, you start a journey that requires you to be more. Being more, is not only about what you learn, but who you become in the process. To successfully initiate a difficult conversation, you have to be more than your discomfort. To set a vision, you have to be more than your fear of failure. The barriers to being more are not just a limited mindset. Real barriers from the environment are always lurking: government regulations, the difficult employee with tenure, and the unrealistic expectations from corporate headquarters. Regardless of your external barriers, here are five steps on the journey to becoming the leader you know you can be.read more
Even though communication is often referred to as “soft skills” a more appropriate term is critical skills. If you look at any workplace issue, at the root you see a communication problem, which affects workplace relationships.
Leaders rely on critical communication skills to resolve conflict, increase effectiveness, initiate difficult conversations, and keep everyone focused on the end result. Leaders step on land mines because they don’t know how to transform communication mistakes into communication mastery. This article gives the context for three common mistakes and a simple tip for communication mastery.read more
Thoughts of impending doom, worry about making a wrong decision, fear of not meeting a deadline can become so pervasive that it becomes difficult to focus, and, as a result, your leadership effectiveness diminishes. With all of the demands and distractions, almost all leaders occasionally suffer from anxiety: that feeling of nervousness where the monkey mind takes over. You can’t make a decision. There’s no peace. You feel stuck. This article will help you understand what underlies the suffering, as well as how to get back in the zone, so you can focus and regain your effectiveness.read more
MY consulting journey emerged from having spent over 20 years working for a Fortune 100 company. However, my role was not as an executive, business unit manager, or human resources professional. I was a blue-collar line worker in a food processing plant, doing everything from packing product, stacking skids, driving a forklift, and tearing down equipment for sanitation on Friday nights.
My experience–working at the bottom of a large organization to now working with middle to C-Suite managers–has given me this insight: Much workplace drama erupts due to the frontline supervisors’ and middle managers’ lack of leadership development.
New leaders get promoted due to their high performance or technical skills. The benefit is that they know the job, and they have the respect of their peers. The disadvantage is that they have had no leadership experience and very little development or training.read more
We’re seeing lots of drama throughout the 2016 political debates. The good news is that we are also seeing some positive results. Those who have never been interested in politics before are getting engaged.
Yet we’re still a country divided.read more
ONE of the biggest barriers to leadership success is learning how to initiate a difficult conversation. New leaders have confessed to me in private coaching sessions that they are afraid the employee might cry or, if it’s a high performer, the employee might quit. Others have told me that they don’t have the confidence or skills and are afraid to ask for mentoring because they don’t want to appear to be incompetent. As a result, conversations that need to take place are put on the back burner, waiting for an explosion. (In fact, time and time...read more
Every living thing just wants to be loved. Some people try to get love by proving they are right. Others try to get love by admitting they are always wrong. Some try to get love by saying “yes” when they want to say “no.” Some people believe they will finally be loved when they make more money. Some believe they will get more love when they get the right career The easiest way to get more love is to Connect with your higher power Make peace with where you are and who you are Show more love to everyone you meet The cool thing about giving...read more
When writing No-Drama Leadership which was published in 2015, I had the privilege to interview one of the greatest leaders of our time, Francis Hesselbein, former CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. Frances defines leadership as a matter of how to be, not how to do, saying, “We have spent half of our lives learning how to do, and teaching other people how to do. But we know in the end it is the quality and character of the leader that determines the performance—the results.” My January article offers sixteen ways to elevate your leadership, with the emphasis on who you need to “BE” in order to achieve these simple but often neglected “to-dos.”read more
We always have the opportunity to create anew if we stop trying to change others and simply work on ourselves. We can always set a boundary, ask for what we want, give a little slack, or choose how much time to spend with someone. We have the power to speak truth kindly and let other people’s emotional reactions belong to them instead of hiding who we are to protect them.read more
You’ve heard the saying that most of us could be successful if we could just get out of our own way. As a leader you certainly see this truth over and over when you see an employee or colleague struggle and you try to help, but they resist your advice, or coaching.
The biggest challenge for a caring leader is coaching others out of resistance. The other person, (the one you lead) has some sort of reoccurring problem that no matter what advice, help or insights you share is rejected over and over again. Yet this person continues to come to you with the problem—recanting various versions of why things won’t work, what everyone else is doing wrong and why they have no choices in the matter. (BTW: this pattern often appears in friendships as well.)read more