As a leader you can’t change a person but you can change their context.

Culture and Brilliant Execution
You Can Create a Workplace Context Where People Thrive, and Execute Brilliantly

A critical part of a leader’s role is to build others up. Great leaders are highly skilled at this. Good leaders sometimes give up because they are not yet skilled in communicating in a way that empowers and inspires others. This is a skill worth developing.

“You cannot change a person, but you can change their context.”

~Lori Michele Leavitt, The Pivot: Orchestrating Extraordinary Business Momentum

You can create a safe place in which you and others become aware of how you each see the world. You can adjust how you communicate so that there is understanding of what you say, in the way you intended it, and that you care.

My intention is to speak to leaders, developing leaders and those who support leaders. My intention in sharing this video is not political (given our country’s turmoil from miscommunications and hate, I need to make clear that I am not speaking directly to this). Please watch and listen to JFK in the video below, perhaps more than once, and consider how your own communications might combine power and caring, as he does:

Continue reading “As a leader you can’t change a person but you can change their context.”

Alignment Series #1: How to align people with strategy

Strategies change.  At least they should – in order to even just keep up with the change around us.

This series addresses Alignment.  How can you align your people with strategy?  How do you know when strategy must change? (even when it hasn’t been a year)?  How do you re-align people when strategy must change in a way that changes their daily work?

Let’s talk about the first step – aligning people with strategy (when the strategy does not require significant change in roles or the work people do).   Continue reading “Alignment Series #1: How to align people with strategy”

Wow! Teamwork in hard times

What does teamwork really mean? Would the U.S. economy be where it is today if we really had this? Ok, the U.S. economy is for another post. This post is about us, and how in bad times we are becoming a better and more focused team.

This Wow! was hard to write. It was also exciting to write. It exposes leadership weaknesses (clarity, verification). It also cheers leadership strengths (vision, empathy, persistence) that compel people to do the right thing right…to keep the business – our ship- clipping along in or toward a blue ocean (niche success!), even in the midst of chaos…

Here’s our “wow” for this week: This Wow! goes to my team. This month every single person on the team deferred their pay until the work they have in progress is completed. The only exceptions made were for part-time team members who completed short projects.

Why is this “wow!”? I look around and see that we are not the only team not completely in check with our strategy day to day. There’s a better way and we are moving to it…and ready to help others do the same.

If people stop doing the right things right, the ship stops, or at least stalls and goes off course.

We didn’t stop…thanks to the team. The communication is becoming clearer every day. And we are making the small yet continuous adjustments needed to keep on course. Continue reading “Wow! Teamwork in hard times”

Wow! Righting the Weakness…in Strengths

Have you ever leaned toward avoidance when you haven’t delivered because you “know” the person you must speak to is going to be disappointed? Getting past this block can be difficult.

Here’s our “wow” for this week: This Wow! goes to two team members who tend to be troubleshooters and do-it-yourselfers. You did it! No, not what you expected. You crossed a barrier for you – and got in touch with me even though you did not have the news/deliveries you wanted to give. Now we are moving forward again. Continue reading “Wow! Righting the Weakness…in Strengths”

Wow! Taking initiative

I really have to say “Wow!”  We have had a great show of team work this week.

As you may know, we have two themes going this year:

For our front lines the theme is “Visibility!” and involves gaining online traffic, reaching out also through direct mail and word-of-mouth referrals, engaging prospects and customers through continuous communication, converting leads to sales, and following up in a way that makes our customers say “wow.”

For our support team the theme is “Stability!” and involves not simply knowing what to do, but having the initiative to take responsibility and action, excel at teamwork (everyone can be a mentor), learn with an aim to enhance yourself while adding more value to the company, be accessible and communicate, communicate, communicate!

Continue reading “Wow! Taking initiative”