It’s been a crazy year. Bank implosions, wars, Adam Lambert not winning American Idol… craziness I tell you! It has also been a crazy year for leaders. Leading organizations through a turbulent economy has been a Herculean effort. Fortunately for me, I sit in a position where I can watch leadership trends unfold across the many industries and companies we work with here at thoughtLEADERS. We’re blessed to have the opportunity to train some of the brightest client organizations out there. This year, we’ve seen four major trends take center stage. If you’ve missed them, you’re missing huge opportunities to improve your organization. As a leader, you need every edge you can get so I encourage you to explore these trends and figure out how you can take advantage of them. So in no particular order, here are trends you can’t miss as a leader:
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-11-23 06:02:002018-06-21 18:52:25Did You Blink? 4 Leadership Trends You Can’t Afford to Miss
My favorite time of year is rolling around (and no, it’s not the holidays with their nauseatingly excessive tinsel-before-turkey consumerism). I’m talking about time for end of year progress reviews. They’re those agonizing, mandatory, and often confusing reams of paper we’re forced to suffer through. Many times you’ll find yourself nervously wringing your hands wondering what’s going to be on the form that determines whether you get a 1.63% raise or a 1.67% one. Once you get your review, I’m sure you’ve wondered more than once if you received someone else’s because nothing on the form looks remotely familiar. Ah yes… the joys of working in Corporate America. But you don’t have to subject yourself to this pain. You actually have a tremendous say in what ends up on that form but you’ve likely been too lazy or timid to take advantage of the opportunity. There’s one very easy way to ensure you get a fair review that shows you in the best light possible… Write it yourself. Crazy? Maybe, but let’s analyze this situation:
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-11-16 06:05:002018-12-21 14:57:24Want A Great Year-End Review? Write It Yourself
You have a brilliant idea. It’s going to transform your business. It will help you get a huge leg up on your competitors and drive tons of money to the bottom line. Heck, if you can get this thing implemented you’ll probably get a big fat bonus and it’ll be a great holiday season at your house. Here’s the catch – this idea is a little risky. It’s not fully proven in the market. There’s a chance of failure and with it, the loss of any investment the business makes. On balance, the risk-adjusted return from the project is astronomical but you have to get past the most difficult gate of all: the senior decision maker who has to approve the idea. That’s no mean feat. Realize that many of these decision makers are busy and they might not have the same risk appetite you do. They might have a strong financial interest to NOT take on large risks (e.g., they have a large bonus coming if they hit their numbers this year and the risk of losing the investment you’re seeking would torpedo that bonus). So how can you move the business forward in a climate where senior management is slow or hesitant to make a decision? Here are three things I’ve found to be extremely helpful in those situations.
Today’s guest post is written by Brian Ahearn (no, that’s not his picture at left). Brian’s one of the most knowledgeable guys I know on the subject of influencing people (which is why he’s been a guest here before). Enjoy! I conducted a workshop recently called Principles of Persuasion. During a break, one of the students said she’d had a conversation with her five-year-old son and expressed parental surprise over something he said. She told him she was going to a meeting about leadership at work. He told her they had talked about leadership at school and he knew what a leader was. He said leaders were people who had followers. Simple and to the point, his definition was right on. Out of the mouth of babes! Let’s look at this leader/follower idea as it applies to the online world. If you’re on Twitter then you follow people and people follow you. In a sense, for those who follow you, you’re a leader. You might be a leader by virtue of your expertise in an area or simply because people find you interesting. But, by definition of our young friend, people have chosen to follow you and therefore you’re a leader.
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-11-04 15:01:002018-06-21 18:47:06Lessons from Leonidas the Spartan King: Why Shrinking Your Business is Smart
If you have kids, you know the nauseating feeling of one of your kids going down for the count and having to rush to the emergency room. I had that wonderful experience very recently. What I learned from that visit to the ER is businesses can make very strong statements about how little they care about their customers simply through the processes they use to run the organization. I’m betting you have a few standard business processes that leave your customers and prospects feeling like you don’t care if they die. First let’s understand the ER story then evaluate how it might apply to your organization. Yes, I’m back on the kick of talking about how stupid policies can destroy customer relationships. My daughter was curled up in a ball on our couch. She was grabbing her stomach and howling in pain. After a quick set of questions, I made the decision to take her to the ER. I’ve done some consulting work in health care so I understand and appreciate that the ER is also a business. Once we arrived, she laid down on a couch howling in pain while I was subjected to a barrage of questions to get her registered. Net time: 5 minutes. We then headed to triage. That’s when it started getting stupid and infuriating.
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-11-02 06:05:002018-12-21 14:56:41Are You Telling Customers You Don't Care if They Die?
An internship program can be great for your company, but don’t do it simply because everyone else is. Just like Mom used to ask, “If everyone jumped off a cliff, would you?” Make sure you can provide a mutually beneficial opportunity, and make sure you’re thinking from both perspectives – the employer and the intern – when you’re developing your program. One of my favorite references of real-life internship nightmares (and how to prevent them) is Krista Reaves’ “Do Interns Take Lunch Breaks, Too?” It’s a pretty candid look at shocking internship debacles, including some of these common mistakes:
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-10-28 15:02:002018-12-21 14:56:204 Ways NOT to Run an Internship Program
Last week I pounded on folks for being wimps and not making decisions. Out of fairness, many of you want to move your organizations forward but might not have all the tools or resources to do so, Given that, I’d like to provide you some explosives. These are the good kind of explosives. The kind that enable you to blow up your business model and find innovative new ways of doing things. Too many times we get trapped by our routines. Have you ever tried to change your personal routine? Uncomfortable and difficult, right? Now multiply that by the number of people in your organization and you have a sense for why nothing ever changes. Sometimes the only way to change things is to (mentally) throw away everything you’re doing and declare a “do over.” In doing so, new opportunities might pop out and innovative ways of doing things can emerge. Far too often, we wave our arms at innovation. We spew consultospeak like “think outside the box, push the envelope, and break the paradigm” with absolutely no clue what those words mean or how to do pursue those tasks. For those of you who know thoughtLEADERS well, we see it as our charge to provide you practical tools for taking action (shameless plug: we teach classes on this stuff too). Enough blathering – here’s how you can (constructively) blow up your business and find potentially innovative new ideas:
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-10-26 05:03:002018-06-21 18:41:03How Blowing Up Your Business Can Drive Innovation
Please give a warm welcome to our guest blogger Chandra Clarke who is the founder and president of Scribendi.com. It’s cool to complain about “information overload.” It’s less cool to realize you’re a big part of the problem. Yes, you. When we think about information overload, we tend to think about web sites, RSS feeds, videos, and podcasts – things other people produce. But you know what? You produce information too. Tons of it. Go have a quick look at your outbox. How many e-mails, memos, manuals, and reports have you sent out today? Know what else? Nobody is reading it. Here’s why:
https://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.png00Mike Figliuolohttps://thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/logo.pngMike Figliuolo2009-10-21 13:25:002013-11-08 18:37:525 Reasons No One Reads Anything You Write