It Won’t Just Magically Happen!

We started defining leadership development in the last post by looking at the importance of truly serving our team members rather than barking commands. While that’s quite the noble concept, it’s far from natural for almost anyone moving into their first position with leadership responsibility. I’ve rarely seen someone promoted because of how effective they’ve proven to be in serving the people around them. Unfortunately, that kind of servant leadership prior to being in a position of authority is often overlooked completely or taken for granted. Have you ever heard anyone say “nice guys finish last”?

In almost every scenario I’ve seen where someone earned a promotion to a position where they now had responsibility for leading a team of people, it was based primarily on a strong ethic and excellent technical skills - both of which are extremely valuable in any field! But having those two important traits doesn’t necessarily translate...

Continue Reading...

Defining Leadership Development

Through the last several posts, we worked through just a few answers to the question Why is leadership development important? In that process, I share some statistics from a few different studies citing costs organizations encounter when they don’t put a priority on developing the people filling their leadership roles; costs that are rarely tracked and even more rarely understood or tied directly back to a failure in developing leaders… If you missed any of that, you’re welcome to circle back to a page I put together compiling it all

Let’s take the next step through by clearly defining leadership development… Promoting someone into a leadership role doesn’t make them a leader anymore than selling them at McDonald’s would make them a hamburger! (I considered substituting milkshake for hamburger but I think it’s been years since a milkshake machine has worked at any McDonald’s worldwide…) And hearing a group...

Continue Reading...

Managing Bad Experiences

We have all been through painful experiences and will go through more. They seem to be an inevitable part of life but also offer some of our best opportunities to learn. The question is not will we go through painful experiences but will we grow through them.

Since the Law of Pain tells us, Good Management of Bad Experiences Leads to Great Growth, let’s ask ourselves the question: How are you choosing to grow through a bad experience? It’s also important to know where we have fallen short during a bad experience so we can determine to grow and be a better version of ourselves moving forward.

At times the only good that comes from a painful experience is GROWTH. And depending on the pain, sometimes that growth is in just getting up off the floor. Standing again. I (Cindy) have been there and not just once! Standing again. Eventually gaining strength to start moving even if you can't see the way. And the courage to believe in and take action towards a better future.

...

Continue Reading...

Can We Afford Not To…?

I closed the last post by mentioning how many organizations view “soft skills” training as something that’s nice to do when there’s time but far less critical to the day to day operation of the business than any technical training tying directly back to their specific industry. But is that the right decision?

In chapter 16 of Leadership Gold, People Quit People, Not Companies, John Maxwell says “Some sources estimate that as many as 65% of people leaving companies do so because of their managers… The ‘company’ doesn’t do anything negative to them, people do.” In many cases, these are the same managers that have risen through the ranks of that company as they’ve developed strong technical skills and became some of the organization’s top producers. But as we discussed in the last post with regards to just how that can impact communication, being great at doing doesn’t always translate to being effective in...

Continue Reading...

It’s HOW You Say It...

If I only had a dollar for each time Cindy’s told me, “It’s not what you say, it’s HOW you say it…” Can you relate - with me or with Cindy??? I can sure think of a bunch of times where I’ve felt that same way!

In providing yet another answer to the question we’ve looked at in the last two posts, Why is leadership development important?, let’s take a look at how much effective communication matters… In doing that, we almost have to consider just how little attention this gets as outstanding individual contributors climb through the ranks in their organization - until something crazy happens that shines a spotlight on the issue!

As I think back to all the times Cindy has made that comment to me, I know there were a bunch of instances where I simply brushed her off by saying, “That’s just how I am.” While that is indeed the case, it wasn’t until I learned how to understand and apply The Model of Human...

Continue Reading...

I Don’t Have Time for This!

Be honest, how many times have you muttered “I don’t have time for this!” under your breath, or even said it directly to someone on your team as you were showing them how to perform a task one more time? To be completely transparent with you, I’m not even going to try to count the times I’ve said. For that matter, I don’t think I can count high even to reach the number of times I’ve been responsible for someone else saying it…

And in most of the cases where we’ve each felt that way, how often would it have been easier to have that person we’re training step aside and watch while we get the job done ourselves? If you’ve read more than a few of these posts, you know that’s one of those rhetorical questions! It’s almost always easier to have the team member step aside, or in some cases gently nudge them aside, so we can get the task knocked out and get back to what we were involved in. If they’d only...

Continue Reading...

Why is Leadership Development Important?

Picture this.. Joe is offered an entry level position with a company as he begins his career. In the months that follow, he works as hard as he possibly can to develop the skills necessary to excel in his new role. Joe is extremely dependable and is outperforming most of his peers by the end of his first year in the organization. 

About 18 months in, Joe’s supervisor accepts a position with another company. Based on everything he’s done to hone his technical skills and learn the ins and outs of the process, Joe is offered the supervisor spot! 

Mary graduated at the top of her class with an expertise that resulted in several employers making her outstanding offers right away. She chose the one that was the best fit for her and she’s been one of their top performers for more than a decade. While she’s an absolute master of her craft and gets genuine fulfillment from everything involved, there have been times where she’s considered taking that...

Continue Reading...

The Top Trait Universally Valued By People

A study mentioned in the 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth states, HONESTY is the top trait universally valued by people.  Good to know and not a real surprise! As we are leading ourselves and leading others we are always honest, right?  But how many times have you seen this and maybe it even happened to you: a stretch of the truth, a white lie, a version of truth, can hurt people and is not the truth. Of course, we have to stay away from any variance that is untrue and stay above board in all things.

The good news is our inside development is totally within our control. We will each face character choices determining not only our own growth but the value we can add to people. The right choices allow us to help people and not hurt them!  Plus, the growth within ourselves is priceless.

In a recent Leading at the Next Level lesson, I (Cindy) shared the Law of Solid Ground which says, trust is the foundation of leadership.  This particular lesson delved into What the...

Continue Reading...

I Am Responsible!

Let’s dive right in where we left off in the last post with an experience I had recently while helping my mom with something. We had attempted to use an online service to fill a very specific need that should have been fairly simple. We took the necessary hour or so to work through the questionnaire tool on the company’s website and received a message that we’d be receiving the legal documents we needed within a few hours. Simple enough…

Except it wasn’t!

In reviewing the documents, almost none of the details we provided were included. For that matter, the title of what we received didn’t even resemble the selection we made when we started the online process. I submitted a help ticket clarifying what we were looking for and received a response from what seemed to be a real person almost immediately outlining the exact step necessary to get what we were looking for. The only problem was that those were the same steps we had taken on our own to...

Continue Reading...

Who’s to Blame?

While I know the same thing can’t be said for everyone on the planet, those of us who are blessed to live in the United States have very few reasons for pointing a finger at someone or something as the cause of our limitations or failures. Not only do I believe that we have some of the most amazing opportunities on the planet, I also believe that the resources we have direct access to - many at no cost whatsoever - are second to none!

Let’s pretend for just a few minutes that what I’m fairly accurate in this assumption… How many people do you personally know who absolutely refuse to take advantage of the tools that are almost always at their fingertips in order to drive positive improvement in their personal or professional situation and constantly point a finger of blame for their lot in life?

Please don’t respond to this with their names! That’s not my goal here… I just wanted to get you thinking. That said, I do genuinely appreciate the...

Continue Reading...
Close

50% Complete

Let's Talk!

Complete this form and we'll be in touch soon to set up a time to discuss how we can serve you.