Creating a culture of overt collaboration is foundational to an organizations ability to maximize results. Today’s post is by thoughtLEADERS principal Maureen Metcalf. In the United States, where we recently came out of a challenging election season, a concern for many leaders in the last few months has been creating workplaces where all employees are focused on the mission of the organization and not distracted by the political views of their colleagues. It seems that with this election, we are seeing a decrease in civility, openness and appreciation for alternate points of view. While this problem is accelerated by the recent election in the U.S., we are seeing similar concerns globally as we experience factions pushing toward globalism while others move toward localism. For example: Bill is leading a group of technology professionals. They come from diverse backgrounds, and many are new to the organization. They are focused on IT security, a field that is evolving quickly. This group is continually faced with challenges they have not seen, and they are one of the top organizations among their peers. They are encouraged to attend conferences, read, talk to people in different industries and talk to thought leaders. Their only limitations in their interactions are time and money—the same limitations we all face. In addition to being encouraged to solicit information continually, they are explicit about their culture. They have discussed how they will work together and define the elements that support a highly effective culture. These agreements are foundational to their ability to think and behave collaboratively as their primary approach to problem-solving.
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Leadership cannot be do as I say, leadership must also be do as I do, show your team how you want to operate. Today’s post is by Pat McManamon, author of The Intentional Sales Manager (CLICK HERE to get your copy). As a sales leader, you have to admit it’s been an interesting year. You’ve been faced with business challenges you never even imagined you would encounter. Guess what? Your sales people are in the same situation! Your decisions, like theirs, are going to be crucial. What criteria will you use to make them? Business is still being conducted; prospects are reaching out; your competition is on the phones and on the streets; customers are buying. Many companies I’ve spoken to had a record month in March despite the disruption of a nationwide shutdown. All signs point to a strong recovery in the near future for those who are prepared. But we must be prepared to make constructive changes, and we must accept that the most important change starts with us!
The top-down hierarchical structure of organizations is limited and outdated. Here are four tips for leaders to adjust their strategic planning process to support a networked model. Today’s post is by Chris Yates, author of Share (CLICK HERE to get your copy). During my work from home life, kids have been teaching me how to win Battle Royale in Fortnite. For my 10-year old son, it’s all about taking the high ground to snipe at your opponents. My 12-year old daughter, on the other hand, builds networks and alliances. She is already conditioned by societal gender stereotyping to win not through force or the relentless focus on the high ground. She seldom loses, and is perhaps better prepared by that same stereotyping to win in a future world. In most organizations, there is a basic assumption that the hierarchy of titles represents the hierarchy of information. Bosses know best because they’ve taken the high ground. Most management books, gurus, and models created to date have been based on the same premise of a vertical organization with a hierarchy of power. Recently, management theory has been about creating a more effective pyramid, by turning it upside down and calling it servant leadership. Nevertheless, it’s still a pyramid.
Our reader poll today asks: When someone on your team pesters you to get something low priority completed, how do you react? I firmly tell them, “No, I’ll do it when it’s time. Please don’t mention it again.” 34% I ignore their pestering and get to it when I get to it. 22% placate them and keep saying “I’ll get to it soon.” 32% I give in and just do it. Anything to get them to stop pestering me. 11% Maintaining focus and priorities. It looks like most of you try to get the distraction to stop – either by being direct, ignoring the distraction, or placating with a “not now” response. Recognize that if they’re pestering you, they likely won’t stop until they get a firm answer either way. Whether that’s you giving in and just doing it or firmly telling them “no” they’ll need a definitive result and will keep bringing it up until they have resolution. Try giving them definitive answers. If the answer is “no” or “not now” then just say so. Ignoring them or placating them doesn’t stop the distractions and those distractions impact your productivity significantly. Step up and assert your priorities. It will alleviate anxiety for them and will reduce interruptions for you. 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!
In this episode of Innovating Leadership Maureen Metcalf, thoughtLEADERS Principal, sits down to discuss with Paul Smith, a fellow thoughtLEADERS Principal, about the power of stories. Paul talks with Maureen about his perspective and thought process on the power of story for leaders. He shares his insights about what works, why it works and how you will be more effective as a leader if you master the use of story as one of your skills. Paul recounts a compelling story told by Bob McDonald, CEO of Proctor and Gamble and connects it to a primary leadership and parenting lesson for him. Through his use of story he illustrates a couple of things like what is a great leadership story? What are the primary elements the make up a great leadership story? He also breakdown why you should use stories to lead and sell and just what are the most common mistakes of using stories. This discussion will have you walking away with the foundations of using and telling your personal leadership story. Stay tuned for more of these leadership discussions between Maureen and Paul, along with a few other team members from thoughtLEADERS, being featured on the Innovating Leadership podcast.
A critical part of effective leadership and success means the understanding of including all stakeholders and total collaboration in your leadership model. Today’s post is by Antonio Garrido, author of The 21st Century Ride Along (CLICK HERE to get your copy). Ask a bunch of top executives who they believe is the best coach in the world, and they will likely reel off the names of ‘the usual suspects’ – you know, the ones that pay millions a year to their SEO-agency in order to occupy that cherished top spot on any of the most common coach-related web-searches. …And, they’d all be wrong. The very best coach that you (or anyone else, for that matter) ever knew was your mom – or whichever family member spent the most time bringing you up when you were a tiny tot: the one who was with you when you learned to walk, talk, read, and write. Heck, it took an age to get you to tie a shoelace, brush your teeth, ride a bike, and master the use of a fork, and you’re a real smarty-pants, right? Let’s not forget, forks can be tricky, of course. Here’s the thing, the reason that your mom was the best coach you ever knew is because of her willingness to see you grow and develop and thrive. It was more important to her to see you do well than her own level of discomfort in getting you there: she cared more about your progress than the limits of her own patience and well-being, and that’s the mark of any great coach. If you are not prepared to invest heavily in the growth and development of your team, you’re not being a good coach (parent).