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.
Communication is not only a necessary skill, but it can be the difference between getting the job, saving your company millions, and ultimate workplace harmony. Today’s post is by Katy Kvalvik. To be an effective leader, you must be an effective communicator. To be an effective communicator, you must believe in the value of every conversation. Improving the way you communicate can evoke a greater connection in all of your personal relationships and have a positive impact on your professional interactions. According to a new worldwide survey, communication is one of the most highly prized soft skills for talent today. When the stakes are high, solidify your role as a team player, problem-solver, or indispensable leader by honing these five essential communication skills: Listen and Be Present In order to communicate effectively, it is important that you have genuine respect for the other person’s view of the world. All people have different ways of experiencing life and the world around them (different beliefs, values, filters, etc.). By listening deeply in order to understand and respect these differences instead of judging, better and more efficient communication will occur. Effective, deep listening promotes better understanding, reduces conflict, and enhances relationships. You can improve your listening skills by practicing Objective Active and Intuitive Listening. Objective Active listening is being in the moment and completely focused on the other person. You’re getting the facts versus getting all the details of a subjective story. It’s very effective for problem-solving. Using it in a professional environment helps the listener see facts clearly and arrive at timely, accurate solutions that maximize results.
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Our reader poll today asks: What is the biggest impediment to you making a big change in the way you work? I like my routine and simply don’t want to change. 16.10% I don’t know how to make the required changes. 9.52% People around me refuse to change with me. 20.49% I’m afraid to change. I might fail or things won’t go well. 6.82% I don’t have the resources I need to make the change. 17.56% I love change and always embrace it. 29.51% Many obstacles to change. There isn’t a dominant reason for change resistance, apparently. Sometimes it’s our desire for routine or it’s others’ desires not to change. Whatever the reason for change resistance, identify it, give it a name, and compare the cost of not changing with what the value of the obstacle is. Many times we don’t do this math and we let inertia lead us to a bad outcome. For the 30% of you who love and embrace change, help those around you do the same. Share the techniques you use to overcome fear or routine inertia. Don’t push them to change — lead them to change. Also don’t let your love of change turn into change for the sake of change. Some of us love change too much and make changes that might not be necessary. Understand this is a risk for you 30% and could cause unnecessary turmoil for the 70% of your colleagues. 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 […]
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Devin Singh, thoughtLEADERS Principal, sat down with Jim and Jan of The Leadership Podcast to discuss his thoughts on transforming misunderstanding. In continuation of our new collaboration with The Leadership Podcast, Devin gives his tips and tricks for transforming misunderstanding into trust in this short form “chalk talk.” These chalk talk series are bitesize sessions on a common (but challenging) leadership issue. Misunderstanding is not an uncommon part of any environment, especially business, but Devin breaks down that we have tools to break down these misunderstandings and how it can lead to greater innovation, happier workplaces, and deeper relationships. Jim and Jan ask Devin where he starts when he is working through this course material with people, asking if he starts at the base level that all of our memories are flawed and tainted. Devin goes further into some of his basic tools for trying to mitigate misunderstanding and how to recover and move forward with it after the fact. Stay tuned for more of these brief Chalk Talks featuring Devin, as well as many more members of the thoughtLEADERS team.
The difference between a good leader and a great leader may be their ability to be authentic. Today’s post is by Katy McQuaid, author of Everybody Loves Grace (CLICK HERE to get your copy). If you’ve ever worked with an authentic leader, you understand how empowering it can be. Authentic leaders aren’t very common and once you’ve worked with one, you’ll never want to work with anyone but an authentic leader again. Why is that? Because authentic leaders are self-aware, genuine and they lead from the heart – they bring out the best in people. Most importantly, they can be counted on to do the right thing because they know their core values and live by them. Authentic leaders create an environment where their values are known and they are willing to be held accountable to them; they are transparent. Ultimately, an authentic leader inspires trust, loyalty, and confidence within their workforce which drives optimal results, mission success, and personal growth. They create an environment where employees can grow and learn by taking risks. In addition, the authentic leader understands the need to focus on the long-term. He or she will not sacrifice their long-term vision for a short-term quick win.
In this episode of Innovating Leadership, Maureen Metcalf, thoughtLEADERS Principal, interviews Mike Figliuolo, thoughtLEADERS Managing Director, about what it means to lead inside the box. Mike will talk about his book: Lead Inside the Box: How Smart Leaders Guide Their Teams to Exceptional Results. In this episode Mike will discuss his thoughts and perspectives on a few of the following topics: Why he decided to write this book What he hopes readers take away from it The questions the book answers that successful people need to know His Top 3 points he wants readers to take away that will encourage them to learn more What guidance he would give leaders based on his experience Mike will further discuss his legacy as a leader, the way thoughtLEADERS operates as an organization, and how thinks of training and development in a very easy to apply and practical manner. Mike uses this time to share more depth to his experience with some easy practices for leaders at any level to apply to become more effective. Stay tuned for more of these leadership discussions between Maureen and Mike, along with a few other team members from thoughtLEADERS , being featured on the Innovating Leadership podcast.
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Three proven ways to win hearts at work with the 3Ps of Balanced Accountability in the workplace: Personal, Positive, and Performance. Today’s post is by Jeff Bennett. When my sons were about 6 and 8 years old, in an effort to create an alternative to video games, I taught them to play poker. Okay, so that admission probably disqualifies me from any ‘father of the year’ awards. But in the process of watching them learn to play, I gained some fascinating insights both about how novices approach poker and, by analogy, how many companies appear to approach strategy. It didn’t take too long for my children to get a grasp of the basic rules and hand rankings (three of a kind beats two pair, etc.), but even with this working knowledge, they weren’t very good at the game. What I realized is that without an intuitive knowledge of probabilities, they were focused only on what was possible, and not what was likely. This caused them to rack up big losses because they would keep betting on a bad hand long after an experienced player would have folded. In short, they hadn’t taken Kenny Rogers’ advice in The Gambler: “you’ve got to know when to hold ‘em and when to fold ‘em…” When I asked them to describe their thinking, it was something like: “I will stay in, because if the last card is an eight I will have a straight and will likely win.” Whereas an experienced player would have looked at the same cards and said: “I am going to fold because if the last card is anything other than an eight, I will have nothing and will certainly lose.” My children were focused on the possibility that the outcome they desired would occur, whereas the experienced player is […]
Our reader poll today asks: When your annual plan goes off the rails, how does your organization react? We try desperately and in vain to make the plan happen. 13% We keep the plan but accept that we’ll fail. 6.3% We tweak the plan and do the best that we can. 66% We disregard the plan and write an entirely new one. 14.6% Are tweaks enough? When bad things happen to good strategic and annual plans, the vast majority of you say you “tweak it and do the best you can.” You might be missing great opportunities or assuming gigantic risks with that approach. Usually when a plan goes off the rails it’s because of a massive external dislocation. Those can be opportunities to reassess everything you’re doing and plot a new course. Your competitors are reeling from those challenges, too, and while they’re taking a “tweak and hope” approach, you have a real opportunity to compete differently in a new market environment. Press pause on the plan. Do a fundamental reassessment of your strategy given the new realities of the market. Make the changes you need to make today, and do so of your own volition rather than tweaking, hoping and waiting. Because the market will ultimately force you to change, and that’s a lot less pleasant than making the change on your own terms. 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!
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