The Best Of The Best Do These Three Things. Do You?

Ever wonder what it takes to truly become the best of the best? For 100 years? If you’re going to be the best, commit to it–not once a year during strategy formulation or an annual event, but everyday in your culture, hiring and financial decisions.

IBM is a global leader that has soared to great heights and grappled with doomed prospects. As the company celebrated the rare feat of 100 years in business, it may be the strongest it has ever been. The following are three things that every company can learn from IBM to contribute to their own success.

  1. Create a Freak Show – In this case freaks are those rare individuals whose unique insights and approaches create an extraordinary impact and singular working environment.
  2. Cultivate Frustration – Frustration is passion combined with impatience. For a company to grow and evolve at a healthy pace, both elements are paramount.
  3. Commit and recommit and recommit

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Prime Yourself For A Career Upgrade

Here are some key questions you to ask yourself to prime you for a career upgrade:

  • Am I truly happy in my current position, and do I see a real future in it?
  • Do I work for an organization I believe in?
  • What work could I really put my heart into?
  • What work would enable me to better utilize my core skills and strengths?
  • What are my innate characteristics, beyond my acquired professional skills, that I can leverage moving forward?
  • How can I tie my core traits to my genuine passions to create a professional situation that I would be happier in?

By doing the work to identify the professional situation that would make you happier your eyes will open to many new opportunities. The surprising news is that some of these may be with your current employer.  You may find that there could be a better fit or a new path for you where you are that would make you more satisfied in an organization you already believe in.

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Popular Myths About Delegating

Myth:  It’s just faster to do a task myself.

Truth:  This is short-term thinking.  Saying this myth to yourself for any longer than two weeks turns an emergency situation into the status quo that permanently limits growth.  (To be clear, I’m not talking about two weeks as a time. I’m talking two weeks period).

Myth: My employees understand what I want without me really having to tell them.

Truth:  Even a team of unusually gifted psychics wouldn’t get things right 100% of the time.   In a situation like this, the leader usually isn’t clear on the desired outcome from the beginning.  This is setting the team up for failure and can lead to high employee turnover rates.

Myth: My way of doing things is the most productive / best method.

Truth: All employees bring their unique abilities and approach to process that creates the result they’re tasked with.   Good managerial coaching may improve these processes as long as the process belongs to the person tasked with creating the outcome. Successful delegation is about results – *what* is to be accomplished instead of *how* to make it happen.

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Toe Curing Vision

First ritual of visioning – kick your shoes off. Think about any of the areas of your life: professional, family, romance, spiritual, fun and recreation… What do you love about them? What inspires you? What are your biggest dreams of personal fulfillment and rewards?

And if you’re hesitating, Just Start! I promise you, it’s the best five minutes you’ll carve out of this day. Visioning is not about being perfect; it’s about letting the inspiration roll out of you.

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What To Do When Interviewers Break The Law

The gut reaction in an interview is a feeling like you’ve got to placate your interviewed to stand a chance to getting the job.  But here’s what I got to say about interviewing.

If successful in landing the job, you are going to be spending most of your waking life with the people you’re interviewing with.  Make sure this interview goes both ways. You’re interviewing them as well.  Show healthy respect for yourself instead of being submissive and placating.

They may not even know a question they’re asking is illegal.  You can help them by saying something like the following:

1. “What is it you’re trying to determine with that question?”

2. “I’d love to answer if there’s a way you could rephrase it” or something like this to help them understand that they need to get on better legal footing.

3. “I’m uncomfortable answering that question.”

Remember you’re not asking for a hand out, you’re offering your skills to a new employer.  Treat yourself like the valuable resource you are!

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Creating The Perfect Culturally Agile Organization

Evolving an organization to become culturally agile is a three-part process.

Understanding

Every person and every organization has a degree of cultural agility. The first step is to understand the current degree of organizational and leadership agility through:

  • Conducting a Cultural Agility Audit of both organizations
  • Assessing preparedness with company leadership
  • Conducting focus groups with current and prospective customers

Development

Based on the Cultural Agility Audit, areas for development can be identified. Development can include:

  • Understanding the impact of culture on working habits, communication and choice of words
  • Training culturally agile skills including self awareness, curiosity, and effective communication
  • Examining the implications on strategy, marketing, organizational development, operations and safety

Reinforce and Grow

Support culturally agile behavior through:

  • Coaching for agility
  • Ongoing training through podcasts, company newsletter, webinars, etc…
  • Assimilating the skills into the DNA of the organization

Leadership’s focus on creating a culturally agile organization must begin early in the acquisition process to achieve maximum impact. The results for the organization are lasting and speed the success of the acquisition and the growth of the organization as a whole.

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Negotiating on the Same Side of the Table

We believe that political leadership is a series of negotiations on the same side of the table. To be clear, a team doesn’t have to agree on everything. In fact, in a democracy it’s important that it doesn’t. This form of government is based in the belief that it’s crucial to pursue healthy debate so that minority opinions are heard and all representatives are able to make their highest contributions. When public collaboration is true teamwork, ideological opponents recognize that they are negotiating on the same side of the table. They then consistently place ego aside to constructively use the best of each other’s ideas and inputs. This vision of collaboration makes party partisans archaic, their obstructive tactics abandoned in favor of thoughtful and productive opposition.

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Coaching Political Leaders

Here are five things it helps to know to effectively coach political leaders:

  1. Time – they have crushing work schedules
  2. The Glass House – there are unique challenges to life in the public eye
  3. Payment and Ethics
  4. Power – they have the power to impact a lot of lives
  5. Coach and Citizen – coaching is about the person, not the politics

There are plenty more considerations when it comes to coaching political leaders, such as staff management, family, and the potential collaboration between coaches and consultants. However, the most important thing to know is that when you’re coaching, your clients are just people.

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