Succession planning is critical to ensuring the talent gaps are short when a key player leaves or gets promoted. One of the great things about leading a high performing team is that people grow and they grow very quickly. The problem with that is they’re always looking for new opportunities. You’re always at risk of losing someone either to a promotion within the organization or they move on to bigger and better things outside of your company. As a leader, you need to be prepared for these changes because over-reliance on an individual player can be extremely dangerous. For example, my dad was in the Navy and he was on a submarine, and they had a badge that was called the Dolphins. And the way it worked was that every individual in the crew had to know and be able to perform the jobs of every single other crew member. Because think about it—on a submarine if someone got injured or went down, you couldn’t have the rest of the crew not know how to perform that role because it would put the entire organization at risk. There are huge benefits to cross-training. First, it builds redundancy. If someone leaves your organization, you have someone else who can step in and fulfill those responsibilities because the business needs to continue operating. Second, cross-training gives people a development opportunity so they can grow. And third, the people conducting that cross-training are learning how to train and develop others. So you’re doing two things at the same time. That individual is learning a new skill and the person teaching it is learning the skill of developing others. Succession planning is critical to ensuring the talent gaps are short when a key player leaves or gets promoted. As a leader, you need to start […]
https://i0.wp.com/www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/08/20230809-Row-of-Office-Workers.jpg?fit=1920%2C1280&ssl=112801920Trevor Joneshttps://www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/logo.pngTrevor Jones2023-08-09 06:32:142023-08-09 00:36:13Building Bench Strength and Succession Plans for Your Team
Learning to ask the right questions in the right way is a key technique for surfacing blindspots that can easily be overlooked. The best leaders know that the questions they ask are as important as the answers they provide. Today’s post is by Robert Bruce Shaw, author of Leadership Blindspots: How Successful Leaders Identify and Overcome the Weaknesses That Matter (CLICK HERE to get your copy). Leaders are faced with two conflicting needs. The first is to act with a deep confidence in their abilities and the strategies they are implementing. This allows them to pursue audacious goals and persevere when faced with adversity. The second is to be aware of their vulnerabilities and the need for a healthy dose of self-doubt. This allows them to see themselves and their situations accurately — avoiding, in particular, the hazards of over-confidence and excessive optimism. Those who fail to do so run the risk of having blindspots — which are the unrecognized weaknesses or threats that have the potential to harm a leader and his or her company. Savvy leaders understand that blindspots, while they vary in severity and are different for each individual, are not the exception — instead, they “come with the territory.” The question then becomes: How do I surface and address the blindspots that matter? One way is to ask the right questions in the right way. Here are some guidelines for identifying blindspots: 1. Avoid yes-or-no questions. Closed-end questions (those that can answered yes or no) are efficient, but don’t surface information that may be critical to understanding a potential weakness or threat. Questions are called open-ended when they allow for a variety of responses and provoke a fuller discussion. For example, a closed-end question might be, “Are you going to deliver your business plan this year?” […]
Our reader poll today asks: How clearly is your organization’s culture articulated and disseminated through the company? Very: we have clear statements of our culture and everyone knows and understands it 38.59% Somewhat: people generally know what our culture is but there is some lack of clarity 34.65% Not very: we have conflicting views of culture and no one can really articulate it 20.47% Not at all: what’s culture? 6.29% Culture drives execution. Culture is the sum of your daily actions. If your desired culture isn’t clearly defined and disseminated, you’re leaving it up to people’s discretion and judgment as to how they should act. Absent guidance, they’ll do the best they can but their choices might not be consistent with the culture you’re trying to build. Invest the time in defining that culture. Be clear about what behaviors are or are not acceptable. Help people understand what the aspiration is for how your organization will function. Be sure you’re routinely disseminating and reinforcing that culture. Sharing it once isn’t enough. Those cultural messages need to be projected as often as possible. Remember – you have new hires all the time and people get busy which makes it easy to forget a “culture meeting” you had a month ago. Celebrate when people take actions exemplifying your culture – share those stories so people feel rewarded and others can see what “good” looks like. It will take a while at first to start shifting the culture but eventually the flywheel starts spinning because people see others around them behaving in a culturally-consistent way. – 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 […]
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Explore the transformative journey towards enduring discomfort and uncertainty. Discover the techniques extraordinary individuals use to develop mental resilience. Embrace voluntary hardship and self-accountability to unlock your hidden potential for success. Today’s guest post is by Polina Marinova Pompliano, author of HIDDEN GENIUS: The Secret Ways Of Thinking That Power The World’s Most Successful People (CLICK HERE to get your copy). Mental toughness is a quality that sets extraordinary individuals apart from the rest, enabling them to endure discomfort and uncertainty for extended periods. But what exactly is mental toughness? Can it be achieved without undergoing severe stress and trauma? Why do some people seem to possess it inherently while others struggle to develop it? Delving into the world of mental toughness, I explore techniques used by remarkable individuals to master it. Manufacturing Hardship David Goggins serves as a prime example of someone who has embarked on a transformative journey toward mental toughness. Despite battling asthma, a learning disability, a stutter, and low self-esteem, Goggins found inspiration while watching a show on the Discovery Channel depicting the grueling Navy SEAL Hell Week. Motivated to change his life, he set out to become a Navy SEAL, pushing his physical and mental limits along the way. Goggins recognized that physical fitness alone was not enough; he needed to strengthen his mind as well. Having endured bullying, racism, and abuse throughout his life, he carried deep-seated insecurities. To overcome them, he began participating in extreme endurance races, pushing his body and mind to their limits. He discovered the power of mental tools to endure pain and developed strategies to overcome the barriers that the mind sets. Goggins introduced two crucial tools for mental toughness. The first is what he calls “The 40% Rule.” This rule challenges the common belief that we are done […]
https://i0.wp.com/www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/07/20230731-Meditating-on-Wall.jpg?fit=1920%2C1306&ssl=113061920Trevor Joneshttps://www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/logo.pngTrevor Jones2023-08-01 08:02:322023-08-01 00:00:51The Art of Mental Toughness: How Extraordinary Individuals Thrive in the Face of Adversity
Our reader poll today asks: How effectively does your leadership team function? Extremely — they are a high-performing team 14.60% Very — they generally work well together 35.77% Somewhat — they function but have their issues 30.66% Not very — they struggle to work well together 12.41% Not at all — they’re a dysfunctional team 6.56% Functional versus dysfunctional leadership teams. It’s about 50/50 that leadership teams are functioning well or poorly. Usually their level of performance directly affects the performance of their broader teams. The real question is why are some teams high-functioning and others aren’t. This is usually a matter of trust. That trust is based on how well the team members know one another, can predict each other’s behaviors, and have team/individual goals that are aligned with organizational goals. How well do your leadership team members really know one another? This is more than happy hour superficial knowledge. It’s about understanding each other’s values, goals, and perspectives. Having a deeper understanding of the individual makes their behaviors more understandable and predictable. That predictability is the basis of trust. If you don’t have this depth of understanding on your leadership team, start building it. Spend time in candid conversations on values, goals, and beliefs. The sooner you improve trust on the team, the sooner you’ll see improved performance. – 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!
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One your biggest responsibilities as a leader is helping your team members identify the places they need to grow and then giving them the opportunities to learn those skills. Even though the members of your team might be high performing, they can always achieve the next level of performance. One your biggest responsibilities as a leader is helping them identify the places they need to grow and then giving them the opportunities to learn those skills. As you think about an individual’s development plan, there are some very clear steps that you can take to help them get to that next level. First, look at the skills that are required based on the competencies defined by that role. Different roles require different sets of skills and you should be able to document for each role what the set of skills is for somebody to perform well in that role. Your job as a leader is to look at the next level of performance that that individual can step into and say at their current level they’re fine and they’re meeting all the competency requirements but if I were to promote them or look at expanded responsibilities for that person, how would they stack up at that next level of performance? Once you’ve identified the gaps, you have to take a moment to think about why the gap exists. Is is that we’ve never trained this person on this skill? Is is they’ve never had an opportunity to demonstrate the skill? Once you have an understanding of why that gap exists, you need to sit down with that individual and discuss why they think the gap exists. Help them understand where they currently perform, where you expect them to perform, and what that gap looks like in terms of actual demonstrable skills that you […]
https://i0.wp.com/www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2023/07/20230726-Two-Women-Using-Laptops.jpg?fit=1920%2C1282&ssl=112821920Trevor Joneshttps://www.thoughtleadersllc.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/04/logo.pngTrevor Jones2023-07-26 06:32:522023-07-26 05:05:17Developing Your Team: Building Individual Capabilities
If you want to grow in your career, it’s essential that you dedicate time to skills such as active listening, direct communication, and giving and receiving constructive feedback. Today’s guest post is by Dr. Laurie Moroco—Certified Business Coach, Keynote Speaker & Corporate Trainer. For many of us, the career ladder feels like a slippery slope. You might feel like you have no control over your career and that the decisions being made over your head aren’t always in your best interest. However, one skill puts the rungs on the ladder of success within your reach. That skill involves how well you communicate with other people on an interpersonal level, and it can make all the difference in growing as a professional. How communication skills promote career growth It’s difficult to find a job description that doesn’t list “excellent communications skills” among its listed requirements, but this is because strong communication skills are crucial in so many aspects of your career. Whether you’re trying to connect with your coworkers, manage a team, or build strong relationships with clients, mastering interpersonal communication will help you on your way. Since childhood, we have found ways to talk with the people around us — yet, somehow, it’s still something that many of us struggle with. When we learn to practice active listening, speaking directly, and how to accept and apply feedback, we can start improving our interpersonal communication skills and positively impacting our professional growth. Start by practicing active listening The first quality that marks strong communicators may be somewhat surprising. Rather than talking, this marker involves knowing when not to talk. Active listening is a skill. It’s not simply about hearing what another person is saying, it’s about understanding them and connecting with the person — the individual — who is speaking to […]
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Our reader poll today asks: Which do you find more challenging: speaking in front of a large group or having a difficult one-on-one conversation? Speaking in front of a large group 40.00% Having a difficult one-on-one conversation 60.00% Having uncomfortable conversations. A significant percentage of you report that the challenging one-on-one conversation is more difficult than speaking in front of a large group. This is most likely because there’s less of an emotional connection with the large group and in the one-on-one discussion, it may feel like you’re hurting someone you care about. To make those one-on-one conversations easier, focus on the facts. Make it about the behaviors, not about the person. Be clear on observable behaviors that are undesirable. Imagine you had a recording of the behavior and you were explaining the video recap of it. Once you’ve established those facts, offer your suggestions on how you want the behavior to change. Emphasize that this isn’t about them as a person. Instead it’s about changing actions to get a better result. Hopefully that approach will make those challenging conversations easier to have. – 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!
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