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Leaders are permanent learners and many of us were voracious note takers at the university. We have been taught that planning is the key to success and we read the covers of our college texts to cover new knowledge that we could use to orchestrate our success.
The experience has taught me differently.
Parents and students doing research in colleges can visit many campuses, fill out the free application for financial aid and buy ACT study guides. But they can not control the selection process. Leaders introducing a new product can study the competition, target the ideal customer and deploy their campaign. But they can not control the market.
The world is uncontrollable. Life is coming
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Parents can not ensure that the admissions counselor of their student's college of choice offers admission and financial assistance to seal the transaction more than leaders can ensure that consumers flock to their product .
As leaders, we like to control things, do not we? Stop trying to control the results (and people) and focus your energy on something you can control, your behavior.
Put on your pencils. Here are three behaviors under your control to help you get started.
It's hard to persuade others to support your idea, coach a troubled employee toward improvement, or inspire a team to overcome the challenges of internal communication without a story.
In preparing for a high-level review team, I had the daunting task of collecting data on everything related to manpower. In my desire to move forward cleverly, I submitted our 10-page Excel-rich, multi-color, excel journal to answer a question about the recruiting activity. He was quickly returned with a phone call and a question, "Is this the story you want to tell?"
This was not the case. Our recruitment success is the result of the commitment and collaboration between human resources, education, leadership and clinical and non-clinical staff, and union partners. We commit ourselves daily to improve our processes, resolve critical retention issues, plan joint recruitment activities and develop internal and community relationships. It was the story that I told.
At the mention of history, titans like Richard Branson, Oprah Winfrey and Walt Disney come to mind. Yes, they are able to tell their story, but they can not tell yours.
Do not miss the opportunity to tell the story you want people to hear. Think of a time when the project idea of your team has not been taken care of by the team. What story were you telling then and what story would you say now?
A psychology teacher even left me a handwritten message on my last article: "It was a pleasure to have in class, Lisa. It's unfortunate that you do not speak more often in class; you have experiences that others could have learned. "
"Have you waited until now to tell me?" Was quickly followed by regrets. I wanted to do a do-over.
The trouble does not always come.
Real conversations can be embarrassing and uncomfortable. Tell people what you think they want to hear is a bad alternative to express your opinion and your silence because you question the value of your point of view is worse. As entertaining as it may be for your fellow travelers, no one enjoys the second chance conversations you have with you about what you could have or should have said when you returned home.
When you have something to say, ask, "Will what I'm going to say move the conversation forward?" If the answer is yes, talk. If the answer is no, hold that thought. There is a time and a place for a real conversation. There is no shame in pressing the pause button to listen to the conversation and find a suitable place for your comments.
People can handle the truth if they understand it and have leaders who are right with them. Think of a time when it was up to you to talk and you did not do it. How did the course of the conversation or your relationship with a group member change to the positive if you had?
It does not take long for the driver's seat to have the opportunity to see your best-designed plans unravel before your eyes; what seems like a good idea on the part of the office, falls quickly into execution without the commitment of others.
With this in mind, I enjoyed reading a study on private channels and team decision-making . Citing past research, the study authors noted that groups "encourage both expression and consideration of minority dissenting views, no matter how accurate, tend to process more information." in depth, are more creative, learn better. "
Going through the mechanisms of seeking feedback in a meeting you learned in a lecture or lesson is not the same as embracing different thoughts, opinions and perspectives of yours.
What is a real or virtual water cooler, a critical conversation is going on and you have to listen to it. Think of a time when you quickly rejected a difference of opinion. How could you have responded differently? Consider this, if you have not answered at all and simply listened?
Each morning you enter a custom designed leadership learning lab where you can learn from your experiences. Put aside your affinity diagram, your prioritization matrix and project deadlines and do not miss the opportunity to make a real difference to yourself and those around you.