Sunday Funnies: Dilbert & The Cure for Foot-In-Mouth Disease

Angie, from NY, admitted during one of our past First Friday Breakthrough webinars that, although a successful CEO, she had a recent revelation that she finds it difficult to “know when to speak and when to shut up during development meetings and conversations with investors.” She wasn’t sure whether it was nerves, or some neurological dysfunction.

While we can’t address the possibility of a medical problem, we were reminded of some wisdom a friend shared with us about how to conduct oneself during meetings. Are you ready? If you blink, you might miss these four simple questions to ask yourself.

1. Is what I want to say kind, truthful, and helpful to the cause?

2. Does what I want to say need to be said?

3. Does what I want to say need to be said right now?

4. If it needs to be said right now, does it need to be said by me?

That’s it. Just the way we like it. Simple. Poignant. Effective.

Has your habit of trying to out-do others, or your inability to keep quiet during meetings caused problems for your career?  We’d love to hear about it.  Let us know by leaving a comment here, or on Facebook.

FLASHPOINTS: Are You LISTENING To Your Team?

BAG Screen shot 111213

Communication is an exchange of ideas, both verbal and non-verbal.

Gone is the day when a command & control leadership style of barking orders in a morning meeting effectively directs workflow for the day.  Long gone is the day when being a good manager simply meant having the right answer.  We simply can’t do it all alone!  Inspiring those around us to become proactive, critical thinkers & independent leaders means we must involve them in the creative & problem-solving process.  Remember though, effective communication is a two-way street.  To make and sustain significant change, it’s important to listen.  Sounds easy, but listening is so much more than just hearing what people say.  Can you sense their stress, loss of motivation, feelings of purpose, excitements, disappointments, and fears – even when they’re not spoken aloud?  Can you hear me now?

How Do You Improve Team Engagement and Connection?

Participate People Climbing Gears Join Engage Involve“How do you improve team engagement and connection?” 

From caller Andi in Il “My call center company is 4 years old and my hard work is paying off with some new clients about to execute long term agreements. I am very concerned (even resentful) about the lack of energy I witness among some of my team, and that very few are as committed to our success as I am. What can I do to improve energy and engagement?”

If you want to listen to the full audio reply of Andi’s question, please click this link!

 

This will require some tough love.

If you are resentful ~you need to own the fact that you may be part of the problem. It’s hard leading teams but absolutely necessary to look in the mirror and see the reflection first.

Here are some positive steps to take in the interim:

  • catch people doing the right thing
  • help the team grow, they need to know how their good efforts are affecting the team
  • trust the team after they’ve been placed on the right seat on the bus, give them the benefit of the doubt.
  • build a sense of community, social activities, encourage community service as a team
  • most important: communicate, communicate, communicate!!

It’s important to remember the 70% of workers surveyed in US feel disengaged or actively disengaged in their jobs and company’s. It is your job to build an engaged workplace

To listen to the full audio reply to Andi’s question please click here!

 

Dilbert & The Cure for Foot-In-Mouth Disease

Angie, from NY, admitted on our First Friday Breakthrough Webinar back in October that, although a successful CEO, she had a recent revelation that she finds it difficult to “know when to speak and when to shut up during development meetings and conversations with investors.” She wasn’t sure whether it was nerves, or some neurological dysfunction.

While we can’t address the possibility of a medical problem, we were reminded of some wisdom a friend shared with us about how to conduct oneself during meetings. Are you ready? If you blink, you might miss these four simple questions to ask yourself.

1. Is what I want to say kind, truthful, and helpful to the cause?

2. Does what I want to say need to be said?

3. Does what I want to say need to be said right now?

4. If it needs to be said right now, does it need to be said by me?

That’s it. Just the way we like it. Simple. Poignant. Effective.

Has your habit of trying to out-do others, or your inability to keep quiet during meetings caused problems for your career? We’d love to hear about it. Let us know by leaving a comment here, or on Facebook.

Flashpoints: How Did You Communicate Today?

The biggest problem with email is the illusion that it’s communication.

Emailing has certainly sped up decision making in the workplace, but is it really the most effective way to communicate with your team?  I can think of hundreds of scenarios where emailing has made life easier for leaders & achievers—saving time and resources.  There are, however, times when email causes more problems than it solves.  For example, you can’t easily communicate genuine excitement or passions with it.  Emotions and feelings don’t always translate accurately; and this can become a barrier for motivating & inspiring your team.  That barely coherent email you sent your assistant late last night could have been communicated better in person, by phone, or video chat this morning, couldn’t it?  Before you hit send, ask yourself, “Is there a better way to communicate this more effectively?”

FLASHPOINTS: The Language Of Leaders

Poor communication damages relationships and limits growth.  Effective communication is the language of leadership.

When it comes to communication, simplicity works best. To effectively improve loyalty, relationships and growth through communication, leave your industry jargon and hyperbole at the door.  When you over communicate while introducing yourself, or when describing your products and services, people get confused.  Remember this: confused minds don’t buy.  So, keep it simple.  To simplify how you describe the benefits of your service or product, present them as if communicating with a child. Kids have an amazing ability to be genuinely straightforward and simplistic, don’t they?  We could all learn a little from this.  Stick to using language most people can understand, that way your message can reach your audience in a way they can actually relate to. How simply can you describe your products and services?

 

7 Keys to Organizational Excellence

There are plenty of examples of bosses, leaders and organizations who fall short of their potential, and never meet the expectations of those in their charge.  Scott Adams has made a living pointing these folks out with his wildly popular Dilbert character.  Just as often, however, there are those who get stuck in a loop of inaction, for fear of falling short of perfection.  The pursuit of excellence, not perfection, should be the goal of every organization and leader.  With that in mind, here are 7 keys that will unlock the potential found in every organization.

1. Capture the hearts and minds of all team members & clients with a unique and compelling vision. “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” Proverbs 29:18

2. Encourage open communication between all levels of the organization.

3. Create partnerships between all team members built upon trust, equality, and sharing.

4. Drive learning into every nook and cranny of the organization.

5. Emancipate & reward the action of every team member to increase service and profits.  (Watch Dibert’s experience with rewards and bonuses before going on.)

6. Value an appropriate balance between work and family. The single greatest element of high-energy living is finding and respecting that “balance.”

7. Celebrate & have fun! When you stop laughing, you stop thinking. When you stop thinking, you stop learning.

FLASHPOINTS: What You Don’t See With Your Eyes

What you don’t see with your eyes, don’t witness with your mouth.

It’s likely we’ve all worked in environments where behind-the-back gossip is rife and sometimes raw. Just because it’s prevalent doesn’t make it right, or any easier to deal with. Here’s how simple office communication should be: we have a problem to discuss, or a comment to make, we go straight to the person it involves and address the issue. Although not as salacious or intriguing, it’s much easier to solve a problem when we go directly to the source…plus it protects morale, saves time and energy, and we avoid blowing things out of proportion. When you’re on the receiving end of gossip, it shows true fortitude and leadership to challenge opinions and deal only with the facts. How do you deal with gossip in your workplace?