Our reader poll today asks: What is the dominant method of communication in your organization? Meetings: 14% Phone calls: 3% Texts: 2% Emails: 76% Presentations: 0% Memos: 0% Videos: 0% Smoke signals: 5% Email reigns supreme… but is it effective? Email is clearly the dominant mode of communication. Are you being as effective with yours as you can be? Do you have a clear subject line that lets readers know immediately what they’re going to read? Are you deliberate about who you’re sending it to and who you’re cc’ing or do you cc everyone? Are your messages simple, clear, and well-structured or do you turn the message into a stream-of-consciousness data dump? Do people respond to your emails? A little extra time upfront in crafting a well-structured and clearly targeted email reduces inbox clutter for others and gets people to respond because they know what you’re asking for. If you end up in a ping pong match of emails, pick up the phone or go see the person after the third volley. It’ll resolve things more quickly. Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below! – Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC Did you enjoy this post? If so, I highly encourage you to take about 30 seconds to become a regular subscriber to this blog. It’s free, fun, practical, and only a few emails a week (I promise!). SIGN UP HERE to get the thoughtLEADERS blog conveniently delivered right to your inbox!
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-24 13:00:352019-07-26 23:18:38What is the dominant method of communication in your organization?
We’ve all heard the idea of being customer-centric, but how you utilizing your leadership to best serve your customers. Today’s post is by Chip R. Bell, author of Kaleidoscope (CLICK HERE to get your copy). The very thirsty crow came upon a pitcher of water. But, the water was deep and the neck of the pitcher narrow. Aesop’s Fables tells us the rest of the riddle. The crow picked up small pebbles and dropped them one by one in the pitcher causing the water to rise high enough for a drink. I needed a prescription refilled for an eye ointment, and my usual pharmacy was unable to get it for a week. So, I called the pharmacy attached to the local grocery store. The “I’m having a horrible day” cashier-receptionist answered my phone call to fill the prescription. When I arrived at the pharmacy, she stood guard over the cash register with a scowl telegraphing the same attitude I had heard on the phone. Behind her were the pharmacy manager and two pharmacy assistants. “Are you having a great day?” I asked cheerfully in a rather loud voice. “Not particularly,” she said. “Well,” I announced, putting a pebble in the water pitcher so to speak, “I am here to help your day get a lot better.” She was unmoved. One of the pharmacy assistants nervously smiled at my way-too-obvious attempt to get her “happy water” to rise in the pitcher. “How much would this ointment cost without insurance?” I asked her in my very best happy-go-lucky cheerleader voice. I had Googled the answer in advance. “Three hundred and fifty dollars,” she answered. “Gee whiz,” I teased. “How much would it cost just to get new eyes?” The other pharmacy assistant laughed to herself without looking up. But the cashier was […]
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-21 08:00:122019-05-06 09:49:58How Leaders Quench the Service Thirst of Customers
Our reader poll today asks: How well does your organization do with diversity and inclusion? We’re great. We’re very diverse and inclusive: 34% We’re okay. We actively manage D&I but have some opportunities: 35% We’re fair. We know we have issues and are working on them: 18% We’re poor. We hardly know what D&I stands for: 12% D&I takes effort but is worth it. Focusing on diversity and inclusion takes effort and is a mindset. The benefits are clear — broader ideas, wider perspectives, better results. Living and working in a bubble can cause you to miss opportunities and lose good employees and customers. Recognize D&I isn’t some corporate program. It’s about openness to bringing in new people with backgrounds different than yours and making them an integral part of everything you do. If your organization isn’t very good at this yet, go interview people at organizations that excel at it. Learn everything you can on the subject. Embrace opportunities to interview, hire and include people different than you are. Over time this mindset will take hold in your organization and the benefits follow. But don’t do it only for the benefits — do it because it’s the right thing to do. We’re all occupying the same world. We need to act accordingly. Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below! – Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC Did you enjoy this post? If so, I highly encourage you to take about 30 seconds to become a regular subscriber to this blog. It’s free, fun, practical, and only a few emails a week (I promise!). SIGN UP HERE to get the thoughtLEADERS blog conveniently delivered right to your inbox!
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-17 13:00:242019-07-26 23:14:09How well does your organization do with diversity and inclusion?
Almost all industries are segmented, but sometimes big changes require creating a team with representation from all sides of the business. Here are the basics of working with cross-functional teams. Today’s post is by Mike Figliuolo, Managing Director of thoughtLEADERS. Imagine an orchestra made up of nothing but trumpets. Imagine a baseball team of all catchers. Imagine a medical team that’s nothing but radiologists. Those aren’t good situations. A cross-functional team is a group of people with different functional expertise working toward a common goal. It can include people from finance, marketing, operations and HR, and other key functional areas. Employees from different levels usually participate on a cross-functional team. The team might include frontline operators, managers and directors, you may have analysts and project managers on the team. There may be other job families involved. These teams can also include people from outside the organization like suppliers, customers, or consultants. The important thing to note about a cross-functional team is you’re bringing together people with different experiences, different perspectives, and different skill sets to jointly solve a problem or implement an initiative. Different perspectives and skills are designed to give you a higher chance of success since you’re involving relevant experts from relevant areas. If you get the opportunity to lead a cross-functional team, I encourage you to jump at that chance. You’re going to learn so much about different functions that you may never have experienced before and you’re going to see the power of bringing together those diverse perspectives and experiences and pointing them toward a common objective.
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-16 06:30:072019-08-13 11:49:35The Basics of a Cross-Functional Team
Engagement continues to be more and more difficult in a growing world with more distractions, here are a few ways to increase yours. Today’s post is by Eric Stutzman, co-author of The Culture Question (CLICK HERE to get your copy). On a recent trip, I took a cab ride where the driver complained loudly about unmotivated and overpaid government workers in his city. Then he went on to share that both of his daughters work for the government. He explained how they complain to him about wanting to do some good and pursue their careers in government, but how hard that can be sometimes. “So,” says my driver, “I tell them not to worry about it. I tell them that they should just sit back, collect a paycheck, keep their eyes on their pension, and not rock the boat.” His advice to his daughters seemed tragic to me. He was advising them to accept the “golden handcuffs” and perform in exactly the same way that he was just complaining about. However, I would guess that he doesn’t want his daughters to work jobs that numb their hopes, disengage their minds, and dull their energy so that they can collect a good pension for a few short years at the end of it all. I wonder if he would give different advice if he were to step back for a moment to consider his hopes and dreams for his daughters. I realize that bureaucracy has the capacity to frustrate people, but I don’t believe anyone should have to succumb to a mediocre work environment. As far as I know, my cab driver’s daughters only have one life to live, and the only time they have for sure is the time they are living right now. None of us can predict how […]
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-14 08:00:372019-05-06 09:28:51Four Ways to Increase Your Personal Engagement
Our reader poll today asks: What portion of your team’s work is done remotely? Over 90%. My team is all over and we use calls/virtual tools for almost everything: 12% 60-90%. We do a substantial amount of work remotely: 10% 40-60%. Around half of what we do is done remotely: 12% 20-40%. We don’t do a lot remotely. Most work is face to face: 18% Less than 20%. We are almost always working together in person: 48% Remote work is substantial. While two-thirds of you still do most or all of your work face-to-face, it’s hard to ignore how much work has shifted to being remote. While the nature of your business obviously dictates how large or small the opportunity is to work remotely, ask yourself if you’re actively pursuing those opportunities. Remote work can improve productivity (e.g., it eliminates commuting, improves morale, etc.) and cut costs. Given the quality of tools available for video conferencing, document sharing and collaboration, and workflow management, moving some of your work to remote channels is an opportunity you can’t ignore. Take a moment to review your business processes and see which ones can be changed and supported by remote work. Run a pilot. Monitor results. You might be very pleased with what happens. Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below! – Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC Did you enjoy this post? If so, I highly encourage you to take about 30 seconds to become a regular subscriber to this blog. It’s free, fun, practical, and only a few emails a week (I promise!). SIGN UP HERE to get the thoughtLEADERS blog conveniently delivered right to your inbox!
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-10 13:00:592019-07-09 11:32:39What portion of your team's work is done remotely?
Taking a few lessons from Nature about how to keep and engage employees. Today’s post is by Dr. Kathleen E. Allen, author of Leading from the Roots (CLICK HERE to get your copy). Most organizations struggle with generating authentic employee engagement. There is an unlikely teacher, however, that can provide some interesting strategies on creating stronger engagement within any team, business, or otherwise. That teacher is nature. Entities that are managed and led based on nature are considered “living systems” rather than objectified organizations. Living systems are much more agile, and respond to feedback much more rapidly. As a result, those working within these organizations often feel they have a stronger voice within the operation – which leads to stronger engagement. The idea of creating a “living system” organization might seem overwhelming or too abstract of a goal. Yet most companies that reflect these types of values started with very small steps. And engagement is an excellent place to start. When it comes to using nature’s principles as a model for business, here are four significant lessons that could help boost employee engagement: ONE: Design the organization so engagement is essential. Nature is designed from the start by the relationship between sunlight and photosynthesis. Sunlight is a free resource that sends energy to the earth. It only works, however, if there are leaves, algae, and grass that photosynthesize the energy of the sun into life-giving nutrients.
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-07 08:00:082019-05-06 09:28:36Four Lessons in Employee Engagement We Can Learn from Nature
Our reader poll today asks: When budgets get cut, how do you handle investing in your people? All training and development is the first thing we cut: 15% We cut some training and development but leave critical stuff in place: 28% We cut some “nice to have” training but really protect the core offerings: 40% We cut elsewhere because people are truly our most important resource: 16% Continue investing in people. It’s encouraging to see a strong commitment to training even in the face of economic challenges. Your people always need to grow and develop. You made a commitment to help them do that on the day you hired them. They see it when you take those things away and it enters their decision-making process as to where they want to work the next day. Understand there is a huge cost to pulling back on their development. Their performance will eventually suffer. That will spill over into your business’ performance. That will lead to worse economic performance and more budget cuts. The downward cycle is obvious. Do all you can to protect your investments in your people. Your competitors are. They’re also telling your people to come join them in an organization that continues to invest in development. Investing in people is one of the wisest decisions you can make. Do you agree with these poll results? Let us know in the comments below! – Mike Figliuolo at thoughtLEADERS, LLC Did you enjoy this post? If so, I highly encourage you to take about 30 seconds to become a regular subscriber to this blog. It’s free, fun, practical, and only a few emails a week (I promise!). SIGN UP HERE to get the thoughtLEADERS blog conveniently delivered right to your inbox!
http://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Ryan Shawhttp://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngRyan Shaw2019-10-03 13:00:172019-07-09 11:29:28When budgets get cut, how do you handle investing in your people?