What causes a leader to fail?
The truth is, there are many things that cause failure at all levels of leadership. There is not a specific “formula” for leadership failure, just as there is not a specific “formula” for leadership success. There are however, actions or behaviors that drive a leader toward the path of success or failure.
What sets one leader apart from another leader? Why do some leaders have an ability to motivate themselves and those around them to accomplish great things?
There are several factors that create success for a leader; however, Emotional Intelligence is being quickly rated among the top indicators. In the article "EQ vs. IQ - emotional intelligence, intelligence quotient", Cynthia L. Kemper states, “For those in leadership positions, emotional intelligence skills account for close to 90 percent of what distinguishes outstanding leaders from those judged as average.”
Great leaders love and champion change…well, at least that’s what most business articles would have you believe. I believe that the question begs a more complex answer to provide true guidance. As managers, we can each “champion” change, what we need to explore is how to develop our personal skills and how this becomes part of our leadership journey.
So what do we mean by “championing change”? Change Champions are leaders selected and trained to manage the inevitable uncertainty that is bound to arise within your team when faced with a program of change. To consider your role, I will examine change at three core levels: Championing a Quality Culture for Change; Leading your Team through Change; and Your Role as a Change Champion.
Visionary Leaders are often identified as innovative, out of the box thinkers, risk takers and able to see the possibilities for the future. While all of these things are typically true of visionary leaders, they show up as outward attributes that make the visionary leader successful. These things are the aspects of the process that goes on internally within the leader individually. There is another key aspect to being a visionary leader that does not get as much attention or "flair." This other aspect of visionary leadership is knowing how to empower others. This attribute of empowering is not only essential to one's development, but it is also important to the success of relationships.
Often, leadership training focuses on one’s ability to define a vision, lay out plans and motivate people to work hard and achieve purposeful goals. Effective leadership also requires an appreciation of the people we are to lead and the cognitive reserves they require to effectively carry out their assigned roles. In our 24/7 society many things compete for the time and mental capacity of our people. As sleep gives way to social media and work, our reserves dwindle, we become fatigued and we cannot perform at our best. This webinar will introduce leaders to the physiological attributes of fatigue that we all share and those that make us unique. It will then discuss how leaders can get to know the unique nature of their staff, and provide the support they need to perform at their very best.
When we speak and write, we are competing with highly compelling stimuli: smartphones, social media, information overload already living in the swirling brains of our listeners and readers. What if you shared your ideas in a way that makes it impossible for them to NOT listen? You’ll get a bunch of those strategies in this webinar. Prepare to be listened to like never before – and to inspire real action, too.
Michelle Barry Franco, MBF Professional Development & Consulting
- Spent the last 13 years helping entrepreneurs, people inside companies, and college students to hit the speaking stage and the meeting room with more authenticity and impact
- author of Soul Power to Your Message
According to a study conducted in 2008 by PriceWaterHouseCoopers and Association Resource Centre, Inc., companies that use professional coaching reported a median return on investment of seven times their initial investment. The study was the result of a survey of corporate and individual clients of ICF (International Coach Federation) member coaches. It also found that individuals who participated in coaching reported a median return on investment of 3.44 times their investment...
Duration: 65 minutes
What will you be known for in your organization?
PERSONAL BRAND . . . a trendy phrase or something of value? We’re all very familiar with corporate brands; Coke, Disney and McDonalds to name a few. But what about a personal brand and do you really need to be concerned about having one? Whether you are a student, searching for your next job or already employed, it’s important for you to be able to articulate your unique value proposition.
View this engaging session to learn:
- Why it’s important to your success at “Me, Inc.”
- How to create an effective personal brand statement.
- How to manage your brand with social media.
- What return you receive from living your brand.
Duration: 58 minutes
As we navigate the intricacies and difficulties of the business environment, it becomes harder to have clear, uncluttered relationships and peace in the office.
Did you know that unforgiveness is a significant factor in decreased physical health among active, working adults? Leaders and team members alike need proactive, valuable tools to deal with difficult employees, workplace resentments, and problems of the day in order to stay healthier throughout their careers.
Taylor Tagg worked for over twenty years in Corporate America at such companies as AutoZone, ServiceMaster, and FedEx in Sr. Finance and Accounting before making a big change. Taylor Tagg is an Emotional Intelligence trainer, two-time author, international speaker, and radio and TV host. Taylor is certified by the Midwest Institute for Forgiveness Training as a Forgiveness Coach and the Napoleon Hill Foundation as a Success Leadership Trainer. He is also a lead instructor for the impactful Industrial Readiness Training program at Southwest Tennessee Community College. Taylor has authored two inspirational books, Enrich Your Sunrise and The Path to a Peaceful Heart. His third book on Lessons from Adversity and Defeat is due out in this fall. Taylor also hosts a BlogTalkRadio Show called Journey to Success and an internet TV program called Forgiveness Moments.
Have you ever given or received feedback and it did not turn out at all the way you expected? In this webinar we will explore the SBI feedback model. This model is a powerful and useful tool in leadership and life for giving and receiving feedback in a safe manner. SBI is a model designed by the Center for Creative Leadership for self-evaluation and giving feedback to others.
SBI is an acronym that is defined below:
- Situation: Describe the situation where the observed behavior occurred.
- Behavior: Describe the person’s behavior (or your behavior) – physical, observable action.
- Impact: Share with the person (or yourself) the impact of their behavior on you and others present.
There are several ways to engage the SBI model in your leadership. You can use it to observe yourself as a leader, work with your team, colleagues and boss. In this webinar we will take a deeper dive into using the SBI model, discuss how to use it effectively in your leadership.
I was looking for a particular book for a client and during my search in my library of way too many books, I spotted the book Art of Possibilities. I read it several years ago and have often recited some of my key learnings to leaders that I thought could benefit from Ben Zander’s approach to leadership.
As I thumbed through the book, one of Zander’s key concepts caught my attention – the downward spiral. That was it – the “thing” that my client was caught in. We had been discussing for months possible solutions for a very specific issue. Although we had brainstormed several potential solutions, it seemed each of them had major flaws or “just wouldn’t work”. I realized the leader was in a constant downward spiral and I had joined him. In case you’re wondering exactly what I mean by downward spiral – it is that tendency to get caught up in “what’s wrong” and “why it’s wrong” conversations thus spiraling into negativity. And when you are in a negative spiral, possibility doesn’t exist.
So how do you stop the spiral and get unstuck? Here are five ways to avoid the downward spiral:
- Recognize that you’re in a downward spiral. Some people don’t realize or not willing to admit that they are in a downward spiral. So a little self-awareness: if someone offers a potential solution, and you’re first thought or comment is how it will not work or the potential problems you already see, you could be in a downward spiral.
- Stop the negative chatter in your head. When you think about a problem, examine the facts. What are the concrete facts? When we judge people’s intent, character, and abilities, facts can become distorted and overstated.
- State the problem without assigning it to a person or particular group. Example: Joe and his team failed to meet their sales goal this month. Possible restatement: We had a sales goal of $____ and the month-end result was $____. In the first example, you can easily move into a downward spiral with a focus on Joe and the team. The second example, the facts speak for themselves and puts the emphasis on the goal. You want Joe and his team to make goal not spend energy and time trying to defend their character and abilities.
- Have a “possibility” brainstorming session with the team. Give everyone a 2-3 day notice to come to the session with suggestions and ideas about how to resolve the problem. The key to the success of this approach is to take all ideas/suggestions without any discussion of their potential or viability. This will keep the ideas/suggestions coming and prevents those downward spiral conversations. Once you get all the possibilities listed, then you look at viability. Again, keep the conversation centered on how you could make it work. Don’t allow anyone to “shoot holes” into the ideas. Those holes will become evident if they exist during the process. Narrow the ideas/suggestions to the top 2-3 and create an action plan.
- Once you create the action plan with the potential solutions, enroll people into the plan. A good way to create buy-in is to invite people to give frequent feedback on how the plan is going. Encourage them to speak-up if there is a need to “tweak” something.
- Celebrate the successes along the way and continually ask for input on ways to improve the workplace.
Often leaders wait too long to address a problem or is only made aware of a problem when it has reached a near crisis. This creates a stressful environment for everyone. And a stressful environment creates downward spirals. Good leaders create environments that exudes, “We are in this together.” When leadership and associates work as a team in an environment of trust and individual value – the possibilities are endless.
For strategy, Dr. Seuss said it best…. “You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose...”
When I first started working in strategic planning, this became my favorite quote. Meetings were a sea of vague but lofty strategic terms. Discussions focused on visionaries who could see and define a future the rest of us could not. I cringed at critical assessments such as “she can’t think strategically” or “he doesn’t have vision”. I was frustrated by the conflict between this elite view of strategy and my values that each individual has insights to contribute to future planning. I see this collaboration as the very essence of a leadership planning model.
My work is energized by a much simpler and more basic view of what is important for effective strategy…an engaged team that understands and contributes to a common future vision. In one of my favorite books, Being Strategic, Erica Anderson has a quote “Being strategic means consistently making those core directional choices that will best move you toward your hoped-for future”. This simple definition in a complex world of business, knits operations and strategy into cohesive future direction. If you can create actionable strategy that your whole team understands, you create communication to power your organization.
So how do you actually build effective strategy? Like any team effort, diverse thinking builds a better product. Committing the time and effort for the process is critical and well worth the investment. Invest your time for strategy in the following ways
- Solicit input from a broad group of constituents – include time for surveys, brainstorming, and research to fuel creative thinking.
- Revisit and refine your Mission – The mission statement can provide a bright light for your planning, so take the time to work with it.
- Actively listen to your clients – Remember why you exist and who you are serving. Don’t rely on dated input and information. Bring in new opinions.
- Define 3-5 high level goals, themes, or objectives for dynamic progress – Be sure to take the time to synthesize to this manageable number. This focus is critical for action.
- Define process checkpoints to discuss and measure progress. A great strategic plan that is left on the shelf is meaningless. Inclusive strategy needs to be reviewed regularly to stay on course.
The business world of today is powered by diverse teams. Success is driven by passion, commitment, and a plan. Strategy is the plan to energize and empower the people in your organization “in any direction you choose”. Hats off to Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel for saying it best. Use your strategy to “steer you in any direction you choose”.
We would probably agree that there is not a lack of communication in our culture today. So much information that at times we just tune-out, skim over, ignore or delete out of exhaustion and frustration. As daunting as the 24/7 influx of information can be the real struggle has become how to make communication effective and affective. How do we convey important information so that people will grasp the message and more importantly – act on it.
In this webinar we will:
- Differentiate between effective and ineffective communication
- Define A-ffective communication
- Identify appropriate mediums for different types messages
- Create a template that will enable effective and affective communication
We will learn how to recognize when difficult conversations need to happen- why we avoid them and how/when we have them successfully.
Have you ever found yourself making this statement, “I just call it like I see it” or have you known a leader, friend or family member who says this?
Calling something as you “see” it can be strength. People are not left wondering what you think or how you feel, which can be refreshing and provide clear communication. So many leaders “beat around the bush” and their teams are not clear on what they want.
The challenge in “calling it like I see it” is one key word, “I.” We all see things differently in the world. One of the most thought provoking movies I have seen that illustrates this is the movie, Crash. If you have not seen the movie, I highly recommend it. It will open your eyes to your own personal judgments and the importance of creating strong paradigm shifts. Just about the time you think you have a character figured out in the movie, something shifts and your paradigm is rocked. You will find yourself in deep thought and mentally stimulated at the end of the movie.
Similar to Crash, in our leadership when we “call it like I see it,” we may learn that the way we see it could be very different from how another person sees it based upon their perspective.
I could place 5 people at 5 different vantage points to view an automobile accident. Each person would come back with a different story of what happened, simply based on the location from where they were able to view the accident. I am confident each person viewing the accident in this experiment would feel quite confident in their story based upon what they saw. They would each be “calling it like I see it.”
As leaders we need to guard against “calling it like I see it” until we know exactly what “it” is that “I” just “saw.” To help you, try the stop, look and listen technique:
- Stop – and think before you judge or speak and ask yourself “is there another way to see this?”
- Look – inside to determine how your beliefs, judgments and personal opinions could be affecting your response
- Listen – ask someone else what they think, saw or concluded about the situation
Thinking before speaking, drawing judgment and conclusions will help in the following areas:
- You will reduce the times you have to come back and clean up a mess made based upon wrong assumptions you made
- You will build trust with people by not going straight to conclusions
- You will learn to broadly scan and take in all that could be going on and not just what you see from where you stand
- You will build relationships through asking for feedback to learn whether what you saw, judged, viewed, etc., is the same as what others observed.
I am sure there are other benefits to thinking before speaking, judging or drawing conclusions. What are your thoughts?