Business Management Information
Cold Water Comments - What They Are and How to Manage Them!
Cold Water Comments - What They Are and How to Manage Them!
Great Groups! - Getting a Group to Think Like a Genius
Great Groups! - Getting a Group to Think Like a Genius
Six Reasons to K.I.S.S.
Six Reasons to K.I.S.S.
9 Tips for Getting the Most From Your Conference Investment
Tips for Getting the Most From Your Conference Investment
6 Ways to Keep Things Simple
Six Ways to Keep Things Simple
Operating on Perpetual Overload?
Check Out Your E-Habits
No Time to Focus on the Big Picture? Try Focus Management
Here are seven Focus Management® best practices that you can begin using today:
Is Your Brain Getting the Memory Full Message? 5 Ways to Free Up Room on Your Brains Hard Drive
Lynn was tapped to head up the project team for a major company restructuring. She began her first team meeting by delegating steps and due dates to the various department heads. That's when she noticed that one member, Bob, wasn't writing anything down. Lynn knew Bob was a competent guy. Yet given the importance of this project his casual approach concerned her.
Want to Manage Your Time? Get Real!
You know the drill - the ridiculous deadlines, the relentless barrage of email, voicemail, phone calls, all those "got a minute" interruptions, the constant worrying that one of those many balls you're juggling is going to unexpectedly drop.
Leadership in Troubled Times
Leadership in Troubled Times
The first task of a leader is to keep hope alive. - Joe Batten
Leading an organization can be challenging, even when times are good. When times are troubled, it is even more important for leaders to come to the forefront and provide direction and inspiration. We face challenging times today with a weakened economy, layoffs, and intense scrutiny of a mistrustful public sector. As leaders, now is the time to stand up for our beliefs.
I subscribe to a value based leadership theory that has as much if not more relevance in our troubled times today than it has in the past. Leadership is about hope, vision, inspiration, communication, and trust. As a leader, you have the opportunity to provide vision and hope to those around. You have the opportunity to instill belief and restore trust to those who look up to you. And you have the opportunity to build a bond with those around you that is forged under difficult circumstances and tempered with the steel of your own personal values and beliefs. I believe that this is true regardless of what level of leader you are. Whether you are a first line manager, or a CEO your people are looking up to you for direction and inspiration. And they are looking to you to provide them hope.
Is that a tall order for a leader at any level?
Yes. But this is what separates the true leaders from those people who are leaders only by title.
I believe that Joe Batten is right when he states that the first task of the leader is to keep hope alive. I believe that the second task of a leader is to communicate that hope and vision to their employees and their superiors in a way that builds trust and respect. With a strong foundation of values, a leader can inspire their people to achieve great things, produce fantastic results, and succeed while others around them fail. Without a values based foundation a "leader" may produce short term results but will fail the test of time as employees, without any basis for trust and respect will look for any opportunity to better themselves and remove themselves from the realm of a valueless based leader.
You do not lead by hitting people over the head -- that's assault, not leadership. Dwight D. Eisenhower (1890-1969) - Thirty- fourth President of the USA
Why is it that we hear about so many oppressive work environments, where the bosses belittle their employees, use the whip to produce results, and then discard anyone who questions their orders? When I read or hear about "leaders" telling their employees that they "are lucky to have jobs at all", I cringe. For in reality, those are not leaders. Those are just the caretakers of companies that do not truly value their most precious asset .... the employees. These "leaders" violate the principles of value-based leadership and will soon discover that their lack of true leadership, their lack of vision and hope, will result in their being abandoned when things improve.
He who thinks he is leading, but has no one following is only taking a walk. - John Maxwell " 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership"
Employees are the backbone of any organization. They, not you, make things work. They, not you, find creative solutions to complex problems. And they, not you, ultimately hold the key to your own personal success. For ultimately you are judged by your ability to develop, lead, and maintain strong teams that put the goals of the company ahead of their personal goals. And that only happens to employees who are inspired by, and trust in their leader.
If you want to know if you are truly a leader or not, look around at your team. Do they follow you because they want to? Because they are inspired by you? Because they believe in you? Or do they follow you because they have to. It is time to take a long, hard look in the mirror. Are you providing hope and inspiration to those around you? If not, when will you start.
Are you NICE or do you CARE?
Are you NICE or do you CARE?
Most people and most managers want to be nice. After all, it's easier to be nice than to not be nice. But when we talk about being a manager, there is a difference between being nice and being NICE. A NICE manager can be pleasant to be around. They're friendly and helpful and avoid even the most remote semblance to confrontation.
How do you spot a NICE Manager?
When someone brings them a problem, a NICE manager provides them with a solution.
When a report is late because the employee in question and their spouse went to a movie instead of completing the assignment, a NICE manager understands. After all, it's important to balance work and home.
When the presentation lacks clarity, or the conclusions aren't supported by the facts, a NICE manager thanks them for their efforts and doesn't dig any deeper.
And when the production numbers for the month are down for the 3rd consecutive month, a NICE manager clearly understands the reasons that are causing the problems and knows that they are not the fault of the employees.
A NICE manager avoids the controversy and confrontation that goes along with employees who are not quite performing up to par. A NICE manager defends their employees regardless of the situation, because there are always extenuating circumstances.
And that's the problem with a NICE manager. They always understand and always relieve the employee of the responsibility.
What does it mean to be a NICE manager?
N - Nothing
I - Inside
C - Cares
E - Enough
Nothing inside cares enough to hold the employee accountable for their own actions.
Nothing inside cares enough to tell the employee when they are falling behind or failing.
Nothing inside cares enough to be willing to upset the employee even if it is for their own good.
Nothing inside cares enough to help the employee achieve everything that they are capable of achieving.
Frankly, being a NICE manager doesn't really help the employee, because it leaves them without any accountability, and it does no good for the manager either, as they now have more work to do.
Being a NICE manager is a "lose - lose" scenario.
As a Manager, it is your responsibility to the company and to your employees to see that peak performance is achieved. You also have a responsibility to your employees to maximize their talents and growth, to see that they are ready for the promotions that may come their way, and to ensure that they learn the skills to achieve and succeed at higher and higher levels. You owe it to your employees to give them honest feedback on their performance so that they can develop their own skills and prepare for their future. And you can do it all in a positive, reinforcing manner.
That's the difference between being a nice Manager versus a NICE Manager.
Instead of being NICE, I suggest that you CARE.
A Manager who CAREs will coach an employee on a problem, not assume the work for him.
A Manager who CAREs will communicate with an employee when their work does not meet expectations and coach them until it does.
A Manager who CAREs will identify the talents in their people and help cultivate those talents to even greater levels and coach them in areas where they can still develop.
What does it mean to CARE?
C - Coaching
A - Allows
R - Real
E - Excellence
So you have two clear choices. You can be NICE to your employees, or you can CARE.
Which will you choose?
Dont Let Your Measurements Mislead You
Don't Let Your Measurements Mislead You
There aren't too many words that can strike as much fear and loathing into the hearts of your internal customers, and sometimes your own employees as the words "Operational Measurements". Operational Measurements often get a bad rap because of their misuse by well intended, but misinformed management. And it's easy for your employees to view Operational Measurements as some kind of cheap trick to force more work out of them as you constantly try and force more and more production from your team. Meanwhile, your sales team thinks that you will use Operational Measurements to cloud the issue of customer satisfaction by pointing to your "great numbers" while leaving the customer very unhappy.
The truth is that you cannot succeed in managing an operational organization without the proper measurements in place. Any attempt to run an organization without them is doomed to failure because you will lack the fundamental information required to manage your business. Coach Dave is a strong believer in Operational Measurements because he knows that the right measurements, taken in a consistent fashion will allow you to continuously improve the performance of the organization and the company.
Yep, Operational Measurements are good. . . . except of course, when they are bad.
In simple terms, Operational Measurements are progress meters that can tell you how well, or how poorly your group is performing. The key to successful Operational Measurements is to make sure that you are managing and measuring your key processes. It all starts with your departmental or company objectives. You should have 2 to 3 major objectives, depending upon the size and scope of your organization. The key is to focus on whatever it is that you are really being asked to deliver on, and then set up your objectives, and Operational Measurements in a way that can tell you if you are succeeding or not. If your objective is production based (i.e. produce 50 widgets per month) then make sure that your measurements track the number of widgets produced. If your measurement is time based (i.e. complete widgets within 10 days of receipt) then once again, make sure that your measurement tracks to the objective. You would be surprised how easy it is to create measurements that sound important, but have nothing to do with your stated objectives. For example, if you goal is to paint 10 houses each month a metric that tracks how many brushes you use may sound important for cost control purposes, but it really has nothing to do with the objective. By focusing on the number of brushes you use, you may actually impede your ability to complete the goal of 10 houses. Ensuring that your objectives and measurements are in synch will keep you and your department focused on the prize.
Once you have your key measurements in place, you can start to look for a pattern in the results. If you are not able to meet your objectives, the question has to become "why". It could be a variety of factors from bad inputs, to bad processes, to bad people. To determine where the problem is, break out your measurements in that area to each key step in the process. As you examine those results it will become more apparent that "step 5" takes up 80% of the processing time. Then you can focus on reducing the time spent on that step. One other key factor to account for as you measure your process steps is "wait time". "Wait time" doesn't always manifest itself clearly in reporting, so spend the time to analyze how many handoffs exist in your process and ask yourself and your staff if some of those handoffs can be eliminated through combing functions, training, etc. It is simply amazing the amount of time lost in a process due to the "wait time" while an order is sent from one person to the next. Reducing the "wait time" can dramatically improve your results.
In a nutshell, that's why you need to have good, clean Operational Measurements in place.
Many of the things you can count, don't count.
Many of the things you can't count, really count. - Albert Einstein
Any time your organization receives some kind of a work order from a customer (internal or external) adds value to it, and then either completes it or passes it along to another organization, you qualify as an Operational Organization. As an Operational Organization you need to have solid measurements in place to measure, validate, and eventually improve your own internal processes.
But there is a downside to Operational Measurements as well. The downsides can take many forms, but the most common are when you start to measure everything that you do, simply because you can. Also, when your measurements rather than your customers, begin to drive how you do business.
Are you counting the right things? The right way? Are you counting so many things that counting them has turned into your primary business? Are you helping your customers, or hurting them?
That's the difference between good Operational Measurements, and bad ones.
When Operational Measurements Go Bad:
When you first implement your Operational Measurements, you will spend a lot of time analyzing, improving, and tweaking them. The painstaking process of developing and implementing the right measurements requires a lot of time up front. But that time is time well invested to make sure your measurements are complete, accurate, and in synch with your organizational objectives. You must spend the necessary hours making sure that your Operational Measurements track to your objectives, that they provide a consistent measurements, and that they are at the appropriate level of detail to allow you to identify weaknesses in your operation, and implement improvements. But, when you find yourself counting things because you can, or you begin adding measurements that do not relate to your objectives that's the first sign of trouble. Also, when your Operational Measurements become the sole driver in your organization, that's a pretty good sign that you've turned the corner and are headed down the wrong path.
Remember, not everything that counts, can be counted. And just because you can count it, doesn't mean you should count it.
Let's use the example we previously discussed of a house painter. For our purposes here, this is a big house painting company with multiple crews who do different types of painting. At the start of the year the decision is made to set a new objective for your crew. You are now being asked to paint 13 houses per month with the same size crew, up from just 10 last year. You sit down with your crew and begin to look for ways to improve productivity. You make the necessary changes to your team or process and then set out to accomplish your new goal. Your changes are effective and productivity improves and you start reaching your new goal.
Then, a funny thing happens.
You get a memo from your boss that goes something like this.
"The bean counters tell me that your paint brush usage is up 15% above last year. Every dollar counts, so I'm putting together a special task force to cut the number of paintbrushes being used. We need to reduce our paint brush usage to 10% below last years level within 30 days."
And . . . . we're off . . . . this is what I sometimes refer to as "The Operational Measurement Shuffle".
What is the Operational Measurements Shuffle? It's a dance that management sometimes does where we lose focus on our objectives and instead start dancing with a lot of extraneous information that may LOOK important, but really isn't. Sometimes it's not entirely clear when the Operational Measurements Shuffle actually begins. But if you pay attention, you'll see the dance by the end of the first chorus.
We're now going to start counting things (paintbrush usage) that has nothing to do with our objectives, but that looks important to someone else far away. Notice that the boss didn't ask you to explain why paintbrush usage was up, nor did he look at the cost/benefit of paintbrush usage versus revenue, he just told you to reduce the usage. You can expect this new measurement to be followed by new measurements of the painters' hats being used, the amount of thinner being used, and questions about the number of rungs required on the ladders. And lastly he blamed the "bean counters". The uninformed always blame the bean counters.
At first glance you might think that it's ok to wonder about the paintbrush usage. And it is. But there is a difference between asking a question, and putting in new measurements to track them. For example, a smart boss would have called and asked about the increase in the number of paintbrushes being used. Your response might have been something like this.
"That's right. Our paintbrush usage is up. In order to meet our goals for the year (13 houses per month) we made a change from regular paintbrushes to disposable paintbrushes. The new brushes cost 30% less than the old ones, plus we save on turpentine, and clean up time at the end of each day. So our paintbrush usage is up, but our costs are flat or down."
With a good boss, that will end the discussion. You've answered the questions, explained the variance, and shown that there is just cause for the increase.
But a bad boss will not listen at all, or will just pretend to listen and then suggest new measurements on paintbrush usage. With a bad boss the fact that there is a valid reason for the increase in paintbrush usage is not really relevant. Paintbrush usage is up, and it must be reduced. For a bad boss, it's as simple as that.
If you have learned how to manage your boss, then maybe you can convince them that the measurements are not relevant by showing how they don't relate to and can even detract from your objectives. But some bosses are so enamored with measurements that they can't tell a good measurement from a bad one.
The long and short of this discussion is simple. If your measurements are clearly in support of your objectives, you are most likely on the right track. If your measurements have wandered from the objectives, no longer support your customers, or even put you at odds with your objectives, it's time to take a step back and rethink your measurements.
After all, who are we to argue with Einstein
One Bad Apple
One Bad Apple
I know what you are thinking but no, I am not doing a
tribute to Michael Jackson and the Jackson 5. Although I will admit that their hit song from the 70's keeps rolling around in my mind as I type this. While the Jackson Five might have believed that "One bad apple can't spoil the whole
bunch" I don't think that they were responsible for getting high quality production results from their bunch. The fact is, in business one bad apple can make your life and the life of the people who work for you, pretty miserable, reduce production from your organization, and even cost you good employees.
The "one bad apple" that I'm referring to of course, is that one bad employee in your department who drags everyone down with them. I'm not talking about the employee who is temporarily struggling with their productivity. A lot of employees go through that problem from time to time. With training and coaching, these
are potentially very productive employees. And I'm not talking about that the employee who is going through some personal problems and is struggling to keep their business and personal lives separate. This is also a temporary situation that usually rectifies itself relatively quickly. Instead I'm talking about the
employee who seems to have made it their personal mission in life to be unhappy, and to ensure that everyone else around them is just as unhappy as they are.
These "bad apples" come in various shapes and sizes, all kinds of different backgrounds, and all different levels of experience.
You have the:
· Information hog - who hides key information about their tasks and projects
· Martyr - whose assignments are always more difficult than any else
· Bully - who intimidates all those around them
· Professional Devils Advocate - who never met a concept that they actually liked, but they will gladly take credit for any concept that actually works
· Company/Management Haters - who spend all of their free time telling anyone who will listen (and many that won't) how bad and evil the Company and Management Team really is
· Slacker - who never really seems to do anything, but is always telling everyone how busy and overworked they are
Generally speaking, it's not hard to tell if you have a bad apple in your group. They do tend to stand out. They wear their misery with pride. All kinds of bad things happen to them routinely, but the problems are never their fault. And anyone who is nearby (and some who aren't so nearby) will hear about it. The problem is not that they are miserable. The problem is that they make everyone
else miserable as well. Sometimes it's pretty blatant. They actively incite or intimidate those around them so that no one has a comfortable working environment. They get their power by sucking the life out of people around them and they know exactly how to do that.
As a leader, your team looks for you to lead and to remove obstacles that can keep them from being productive. This bad apple is an obstacle and how effectively you deal with them is a barometer that your staff will measure you by. The place to start is with Performance Management and measuring their productivity. But don't limit Performance Management to production only. Remember that all members of the team are responsible for soft skills as well
as hard skills and that an employee who produces acceptable numbers but doesn't share information, or bullies those around them is still a Performance Management problem. Manage the soft skills the same you manage the hard skills, with detailed Performance Plans. Remember, even if they play key role in your department one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch, for everyone. Work closely with your HR representative to ensure that you are in compliance with both company policy and federal law, but you must remove them.
And speaking of HR reps, take a minute to think about yours. A good HR rep is worth their weight in gold. A good HR rep will help you in identifying problem employees when the issues go beyond straight production. They will also work with you to ensure that you are working the issues both legally and that your conclusions are based on fact and not emotion. A good HR rep is also a boon for the employees, because they will work with the employees to improve their performance by identifying problems before they become severe. If you are one of the lucky ones that have been blessed with a good HR rep, then take the time to thank them for their work. Being an HR rep is a thankless job, and never more so than when they are doing the right things by being actively involved in
Micromanagement and Delegation
Micro-Management and Delegation
Recently I had a long discussion with a friend of mine about Managers and managing. She is a former HR Manager for several major companies and was bemoaning the fact that training for managers has been cut back so significantly in recent years and that managers no longer receive the type of help, guidance and assistance that they received just a few short years ago. My background has been in retail and telecom. Hers was neither. Yet the same problems and issues seem to rise in every industry. Of course, this is exactly the reason that I got into coaching. Coaching allows those managers who want to improve a very personalized venue to do just that.
We went on to agree that the common pattern these days seemed to be for the department star performer to be promoted from contributor, to team leader, to manager in seemingly record time. We agreed that new managers have difficulty moving from the contributor to the manager role because no one is willing to spend the time and energy to coach them through the various hurdles that new managers and leaders face. We agreed that this lack of training never seemed to lower the expectations of the manager, just the performance.
Then we disagreed, strongly. What caused the disagreement? The
concept was micro-management. My friend explained to me that she has "coached" many employees recently and that many of them complained about one particular manager who was micro-managing them. She told me that she helps the employees understand and come to grips with "their problem". "You're not going to be able to change that manager, she explained to me, "so you've got to change the employees". She explains to them that if they are being micro-managed, there's probably a reason for it. They are probably doing something wrong. If they just identify that problem and improve, their manager will stop the micro-management. "The employees need to improve themselves. It's as simple as that."
I wish my life was as simple as that.
She acknowledges that with that many employees complaining that
it's likely the manager is the problem. But changing the manager is too much trouble, she says, so let's tell the employees it's their fault.
While it is true that it is sometimes necessary to micro-manage
people, her explanation makes little sense to me. You might micro-manage an employee if their performance is lacking. Or because the project they are working on is very high visibility and any chance of error must be minimized. But when a number of employees are complaining about the same manager micro-managing them it implies one of two things.
Either this manager:
1. Has a lot of problem employees and needs to start weeding them out, or
2. This manager does not know how to let go and properly
delegate to their staff.
Excessive micro-management is not the sign of a healthy manager.
When someone is constantly micro-managing their staff it's generally their problem, not the employees.
If you are micro-managing your staff, refusing to delegate routine, and not so routine tasks to them for completion, then you are setting yourself up for trouble. Have you ever heard yourself say, "I would delegate this to someone else, but it's just as easy to do it myself"? Or maybe you say, "This task is too complicated to delegate. I have to make sure it's done right."
If so, I hope you like your job. Because you aren't going anyplace higher. Delegation can be difficult to learn because it looks like a huge risk and a huge leap of faith. But it doesn't have to be that way. There are techniques that you can learn that will help you delegate and get you out of the detail. And you have to get out of the detail if you really want to be an executive.
Keeping and Motivating the Best Employees
Keeping and Motivating the Best Employees
In "You Win With People" we talked about the need to hire the very best people to build your team. Now that you've done that the question becomes, how do you keep them, and how do you keep them motivated.
Much has been written about Employee Retention and about Motivation. But most of what has been written has been written in terms of the average employee. In fact, if you are measured at all by your company in this area, it's almost always a measurement of employee retention. But all turnover is not bad turnover, so a retention measurement is actually a false measurement of how you're hiring and firing practice helped the company.
So back to the question. How do you keep and motivate the best employees that you've hired? All human beings have basic needs that must be met, starting with food and shelter. So it's obvious that you must pay a fair wage and provide adequate benefits or people won't be able to stay with you. But once the basic needs are met, does it require more money or more elaborate benefits packages to keep the best employees?
In reality, neither are truly required.
Pay and benefits only go so far, and the best employees, the intelligent, self motivated, team oriented, results oriented employees are not out to squeeze the last dollar from their employers. The best employees have other needs that must be met and the good news is that you, their manager can meet these needs yourself.
Recent studies of highly motivated employees show that once their basic needs are met that other factors keep them motivated and interested in their jobs. Here are the 12 questions that the best employees want to be answered:
1. Do I know what is expected of me at work?
2. Do I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work
3. At work, do I have the opportunity to do what I do best
4. In the last 7 days, have I received recognition or praise
for doing good work?
5. Does my supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about
me as a person?
6. Is there someone at work who encourages my development?
7. At work, do my opinions seem to count?
8. Does the mission/purpose of my company make me feel my job
9. Are my coworkers committed to doing quality work?
10. Do I have a best friend at work?
11. In the last 6 months, has someone at work talked to me about
12. This last year, have I had opportunities at work to learn
It's important to note that of these 12 questions, 11 of them (all except number 8) are controlled locally by the employee, the manager, or the supervisor. This means that the first and second line managers have enormous control over their ability to motivate and retain the talented employees that they've hired. You can even argue that you directly impact number 8 based on how you represent the company.
Look back at your own career and think about the people you've worked for and which one's you were most willing to follow. Were these the needs that that leader met for you?
Goals and Objectives
Picture this scenario and see if it seems familiar to you.
"Dave, I need you to give me the goals and objectives for your group for the new year".
"Sure boss. What would you like them to look like?"
"You know. The usual. Increase productivity by 10%. Reduce your headcount by 15%. Implement some new controls. Oh, and I need them in two days."
Frankly, I've had this discussion about 25 times in my career and it always made me just a little bit crazy. Without any real look at what is going to happen this year, or any idea what the top executives are shooting for, I'm going to lay out my department's goals for the next year. Then I'm going to drive my people to meet these goals so that I get a good review and an increase in salary.
Not only does this scenario ignore the direction that should be set by the top executives, but it also misses the single most important reason you are in business..... The customer. So, while you're out doing the victory dance for meeting your objectives, your customer is sticking sharp pins into a voodoo doll that bears a remarkable resemblance to you.
Let's cut right to the chase here. When you create your departmental objectives based on the above conversation, the only thing you are really thinking about is getting the task complete so that you can check it off your list. You're not thinking about customer satisfaction, or how you are going to improve quality, or even major initiatives that you know (or don't know) are coming your way. You're thinking about getting the boss off your back.
And why not? The exercise above is just that, an exercise.
So, how should objectives really be set?
From the top down. The very top. The CEO of your company should be sitting down with his top executives and laying out the 2 or 3 top priorities for the company for next year. Those priorities represent the vision for the company. Each executive takes those 2 or 3 priorities and determines what they can do to support the vision. Working together the executives assure that the goals that they are passing down to the next level of management are consistent with each other and with the overall company goals.
Nothing can do more damage to a company and its customers' then major functional areas with conflicting or unrelated goals and objectives.
After the buy in has been received at that level, those visions and goals are passed down to the next level of management, where more specific goals and objectives are designed and shared with their customers. It's critical that everyone in the company see and understand the vision from the top, and that everyone understands what they are doing to support the vision. By developing a company vision at the top and then developing goals and objectives that explicitly support those goals you can then be sure that you are supporting the companies true goals. Then when you look at what you have accomplished for the year you and your customers will be looking at the same results.
So, how should you act on this?
Start now. And start by asking your boss for the goals and objectives of your senior executives so that you can stay in synch. Plant the seed that you would like to see them to make sure you are marching down the right path and then share what you have developed with your customers. If nothing else it will highlight where you and your customers are going.
Remember, developing goals and objectives for your team that are fundamentally aligned with the companies strategic objectives is a fundamental part of good management.
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A good leader has the ability to empower others. It is important that a leader develop people who want to share and help in carrying out the goals of the organization. If it is your intention to develop a company where employees feel valued and appreciated, then how you handle disagreements can be crucial.
Employee Success! - 7 Ways Feedback Works
By sharing how well you are doing and how well your expectations are met, your
people get to understand better. So, frequent, realistic, objective feedback is
not seen as criticism, more a way of each in your team helping each other get
better, building on the success you already have.So, why does Feedback work?
The 5 Things Great Managers Sense about their People, Every Day
Using all of your senses, to help you test how your people are feeling in your business, is a learned skill. Once you start to use it, your abilities to notice become refined and you have a background sensor working for you, day after day.
Difficult Staff - It Pays To Get To Know Them Better
It's very easy for a business owner or manager to fall into
the trap of condemning one of their team as a no-hoper or a
Allan Kempert Discovers That Truly All You Gotta Do Is Ask
A year or so ago, I met Allan Kempert. Allan was the Quality Assurance Supervisor for a metal stamping company in Ontario, and just completed Norman Bodek's book, The Idea Generator, Quick and Easy Kaizen. As Allan explains, he couldn't put the book down because it was such a simple approach and he knew that it was going to empower the employees at his place of employment. In fact, Allan had tears in his eyes a few times while reading the book because he realized that he had come across a jewel. He spoke to the people in his department and explained how the program worked. He convinced them that it would be beneficial to the company to start a pilot program within their department.
Motivating Employees - Ten Ways to Start You Off
Yet there is a place for those external 'raft-build's', 'away days' and 'paintballing'! Just get them in context; there is work to do up front to leverage those experiences and get the best value from them. Just build great relationships in your business or organisation, one-to-one - then have the fun day out and grow even more!"Motivation is like food for the brain. You cannot get enough in one sitting. It needs continual and regular top ups."Peter DaviesSo a 'people-focused' way of being in your business generates Motivation permanently and ongoing.Start at the Beginning
What Every Manager Should Know About How to Overcome Boredom
Do you find yourself easily becoming bored or tired at work for no apparent reason? If that's the case, then pay close attention. Research has shown that fatigue and a worn-out feeling are often caused by unproductive mental attitudes. If this describes your case, read on to learn six ways you can overcome boredom.
Character: Is It Necessary In Leadership? (Part Two)
In the first part of this two part article, I talked about the importance of character in leadership. After all, the best leadership involves the people bonding with the leader in deep, human, emotional ways. The passive way of looking at character is that the bonding won't happen if the people are confused about or disdain your character. But there is also an active way of looking at character: You can use aspects of your character to actually promote results. Your best character traits can be turned results-multipliers. Here's how.
Cheat Sheet; Understanding The MSDS and Your Obligations In The Workplace To Employees
Protect Your Organizations Proprietary Information
The other day one of our overseas clients called in a state of near panic, to ask a question. At issue was whether they had unwittingly violated U.S. law by transferring technical information to a joint venture partner in a European country. After hearing a two minute description, I was able to answer a resounding "Yes"! Such are the dangers of operating in a global environment. The worst part is that my client had been lead into their misdeed by following the well intentioned advice of a Fortune 100 U.S. corporation. One that certainly should have known better, but obviously does not. The potential penalties for such errors are daunting and ignorance of the law is not a defense. For a mere administrative ("civil") infraction, the penalty is up to $100,000 per occurrence. For intentional misdeeds, which are accorded criminal penalties, well, let's not even go there.