Sometimes the best leaders are the ones at the back of the pack, helping to drive everything forward and sometimes they are out front, and other times it benefits to be both, just like AirBnb. Today’s post is by Joseph Michelli, author of The AirBnb Way (CLICK HERE to get your copy). Around 2007, Simon Cooper was the CEO of the Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, where I was working with their senior leadership team. Simon and I were exploring how Ritz-Carlton could adapt to meet the needs of changing luxury travelers without losing the company’s legacy customer base. Simon offered an example of the challenges faced by the luxury hotel company in 2008, “I had a guest complain to me that he saw one of our bartenders serve a young guest a bottle of beer without a glass. When I looked into it, I informed the complaining guest that the service was a result of the young guest having asked for his beer to be served that way a day before. That is the challenge … to customize the experience to the guest, ensuring that traditional and new-generation guests are each treated respectfully in accord with their wishes.” In that same year, two men in San Francisco (Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia) were facing a very different accommodation challenge. They were trying to make rent for their apartment after a third roommate moved out. Since Brian and Joe had recently graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design and given that a design conference was coming to San Francisco, the roommates decided to create a make-shift website targeted to conference attendees. They planned to place three air mattresses in the spare room and offer breakfast (in the form of uncooked pop tarts) for $80 per night, per guest, for the duration […]
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Entries by Ryan Shaw
Our reader poll today asks: How important is it to your employees that you treat them consistently with one another? Extremely: They want everyone to always be treated equally: 51.14% Very: They’ll tolerate some special treatment but not very much: 31.99% Somewhat: Some want consistent treatment, while others don’t seem to care: 11.34% Not very: Most of them only worry about how they’re treated themselves: 4.28% Not at all: Special and different treatment is an accepted norm: 1.25% Fair versus equal? The majority of you said your team members want consistency and equal treatment. Be sure you have a perspective on equal versus fair though. Should a new hire be held to the same equal standards of performance as a senior peer in a similar role? Should someone be given time off to handle a personal issue while another person who doesn’t have a personal issue be denied the same time off? Equality absolutely matters on the vast majority of topics. Your challenge is figuring out when fairness comes into play and how to apply it. A big part of doing that right is explaining the difference to people and when you make decisions that aren’t necessarily equal or consistent that you’re able to explain to them why you did what you did and why it is fair. These are challenging topics to navigate. As long as you’re doing what is right and explain things, you can have a productive conversation. Also be open to other perspectives on how to handle the situation because “fair” to you might not seem fair to someone else. Enlist the aid of trusted advisers for those challenging situations. 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 […]
Career burnout is in no shortage in America, catch it early and recover quick with these tips. Today’s post is by thoughtLEADERS principal Jon Wortmann. How tired are you? I ask because even if you practice the best self-care, set boundaries with your time, and manage your exposure to the inevitable conflicts and stress of working with people, you get tired. Performers, leaders, and managers who want to succeed and win will inevitably have tired days. The problem with tired is that it can also go too far. Are you so tired you are burned out? I have had the privilege of working with diverse school districts and education leaders over the past decade. In preparation for one of my workshops I came across this study. Summary: 93% of the elementary school teachers surveyed were stressed, couldn’t cope, and felt burned out. Only 7% of the cohort had low stress, high abilities to cope, and a low experience of burnout. Is it the same in every industry? At every level of organizations? Do professional athletes and musicians experience the same struggles? It doesn’t have to be.
More women in the workforce will impact your culture and leadership. Understanding the needs of this new model will put you far ahead of your competition. Today’s post is by Andreas Wilderer, author of Lean On (CLICK HERE to get your copy). The number of women in the American workforce has now edged past the number of men for only the second time ever, according to a recent Washington Post article, and we have reason to believe this trend is here to stay. In fact, in 2016 and 2017 the number of women receiving bachelor’s degrees surpassed men by 14 percent. Meanwhile, over the last 30 years, the percentage of stay-at-home dads has also risen. In the U.S. these numbers have steadily increased from 4 percent to 7 percent, according to the Pew Research Center. In Canada reports show that fathers account for 10 percent of all stay-at-home parents. This is undoubtedly another clear indication that times are changing and that families are beginning to embrace non-traditional roles. The question is, is everyone else? In my book Lean On, I tell my story about being a stay-at-home dad, married to a successful female executive. Having been in the stay-at-home-dad role for 13 years, I have experienced what it is like for those living in a non-traditional family model.
Our reader poll today asks: How do you handle distractions that break your concentration and focus? I ignore them as best I can and press on: 14.75% I accept the interruption, take a break, then get back to work: 76.75% Nothing ever distracts me enough to break concentration: 1.89% I completely lose focus and give up on the task for a long time: 6.61% Deal with it and move on. Interruptions are a part of life and they’re pervasive both at work and at home (especially when working from home). The vast majority of you see them as a cue to take a break then get back to work. Just be careful that it doesn’t sap your productivity. Do what you can to minimize interruptions because you’re not only giving up the time of the break but also time to get your mind back in the mode of what it was working on. Find a dedicated work space and make an agreement with those who might interrupt you as to when it is or isn’t OK to interrupt. You have to take active control over your work environment lest it end up dictating how productive or unproductive you are. 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!
Paul Smith, thoughtLEADERS Principal, sat down with Jim and Jan of The Leadership Podcast to discuss storytelling and how it can apply to your leadership ability and skill In continuation of our new collaboration with The Leadership Podcast, Paul breaks down just how storytelling can make you a better leader in this short form “chalk talk.” These chalk talk series are bitesize sessions on a common (but challenging) leadership issue. Paul gives Jim and Jan some background on the current renaissance and rediscovery that is happening in relation to the power of storytelling, and the distancing away from the heavy focus on analytics that happened around the same time as the expansion of the digital age, and the return to a more human-centered approach. Paul elaborates on the definition he shares with executives and leaders on what exactly ‘storytelling’ is, and how we can continue to blend the two worlds of data-centric and human-centric to tell better, more compelling stories. Stay tuned for more of these brief Chalk Talks featuring Paul, as well as many more members of the thoughtLEADERS team.