Is Your Company a Club or a Prison?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading
Reading time: 2 min.

(Spoiler: neither is good.)

We can limit the health and growth of our companies by treating them like a club or like a prison. In a club, things are fun and free but very little is structured, communication is strictly informal, and behavior norms match those of the leader–quirks and all. Growth stops because we can’t act much outside the leader’s personal scope.

In a prison (or any strict bureaucracy), fun and free are not valued. Everything is systematized, communication is strictly formal, and behavior norms reflect everyone’s fear of things getting screwed up. The organization can act beyond the personal scope of the leader. But growth still stops here because we can’t change to match what we and our clients need, want, and desire.

As our organizations grow, we can add just the right amount of structure and while promoting happiness, growth, and freedom for us, our clients, and our partners. Our job as leaders is to find that balancing point. We can tell it’s working because all who matter are happy and we are growing revenue, profit, and/or impact.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Thomas Hawk Most Exclusive Mobil Home Park in All of Mendocino County via photopin (license)

The Value of Value

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Hiring, Leading, Money, We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

Hire this person who has the experience or wait to find someone who fits our culture? Discount out of fear that this client will leave or hold out for clients who appreciate and pay for our value?

If we make decisions for expediency and against our values, we give away the value of our values.

Right?

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: BullionVault Bullion bar in sea of coin via photopin (license)

What’s Really Possible

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, What=Compelling Focus, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

We learned all about what’s possible and what’s not from the well-meaning people around us especially family, teachers, and friends. But for the most part, they didn’t know and we ended up with a limited sense of things.

Much, much more is possible than we have allowed ourselves to dream. The wiser part of us knows this and knows what to do next about it.

Go within.

 

In your corner,

Mike

Choose to Encourage

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading
Reading time: 1 min.

Encouragement works far better than criticism or, said euphemistically, “feedback.” Criticism causes resistance. Encouragement opens. It is the wiser, more capable part of us reminding them of their wiser, more capable part of themselves.

Try it and watch them shine.

 

In your corner,

Mike

What Do We Do When Something Goes Wrong? 

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading
Reading time: 1 min.

If we want to forever be in charge of fixing the problems, then we should give lectures, orders, and consequences.

If we want others to take it on, then we should should call out the deviations from goals and coach people to solve the situations themselves.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: This is easy to forget. But we really don’t want to be in charge of all that stuff, ya?

Today’s photo credit: chriscardinal 2008 05 03_2707 via photopin (license)

Getting Others to See It Your Way

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Sales and Influence, We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 1 min.

To get others to see things our way, we can try being louder, more energetic, more logical, more polite, or more correct.

Or (and this is much faster) we can first demonstrate to their satisfaction that we understand their way of seeing it.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: jimsheaffer Disco Ball via photopin (license)

When You Want to Knock Heads About

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading
Reading time: 1 min.

We leaders spend a lot of time dealing with other people’s behaviors. But we can not blame them or use their behaviors to justify our reactions. Our reactions always only ours.

We can, however, choose to see our reactions as signals.  These–and all bad feelings–are signals that we are out of step with what the wiser parts of us know to be truer, better-feeling perspectives.

Since our reactions are the only thing we can ever control, we all are able to heed those signals. We then pause and listen for the that wiser part’s always more productive and efficient way of handling things.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: And don’t worry. All of us from time to time think, “But isn’t it faster and easier to just knock some heads about? Can’t I guilt, coerce, demand, or manipulate them into doing what’s needed?” No, that’s never faster or easier; it’s always less effective. We all know this and just need an occasional reminder.

 

Today’s photo credit: McBeth Marcus gets some sah-weet action with the ladies via photopin (license)

Lack of Progress?

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

Lack of progress anywhere at work and in life feels bad not because there’s something broken but because we fear we can’t keep up or handle it.

But we can.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: No, it’s not those other people’s actions or attitudes. It’s us, the leaders.

PPS: If we pause for a minute and let the idea of growth or progress (or whatever we think is stopping our progress) just hit us, we’ll soon see that we can handle it. In fact, we can handle anything that may come up when it does and if it does.

Today’s photo credit: Russ Allison Loar Directions via photopin (license)

Facing Reality

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1 min.

Facing reality sounds like the right and proper thing to do. And it is if we think the opposite of facing reality is sticking our heads in the sand.

If, however, we think the opposite of facing reality is creating reality, then facing reality is a career limiting move.

Be the change.

 

In your corner,

Mike

PS: When we get stuck on what is, it’s really hard for us to focus on and create what we want to be.

 

Today’s photo credit: blakeimeson Don’t stick your head in the sand… via photopin (license)

Certain Change Leaders

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Leading
Reading time: 1 min.

Some leaders are comfortable with and even thrive in uncertainty and change. We see them being strategic, inspirational, and courageous. They help us find our next best markets, positioning, and offers. Their blind spot is getting to the end zone before everyone else and wondering why no one has followed them.

Other leaders demand certainty and resist change. This appears as fighting for the status quo, having finance dictate strategy, and focusing on operational efficiency. They help us preserve the familiar. Their blind spot is thinking that holding back change is healthy or even possible.

So which type of leader do we need more in our world today? Actually, we need both. Most importantly, we need leaders who can be a strong bridge between the vision-and-progress types and the steady-and-safe types. These certain+change leaders support the vision, understand that change is certain, and help those who crave certainty take a well-lit path to the new normal.

 

In your corner,

Mike

 

Today’s photo credit: Paulo Etxeberria Argi eta garbi via photopin (license)