Bridging the Growth Gap

Recently, we provided our Emerging Leader Development training to a group of 15 or so managers and supervisors.  One of my (Cindy) favorite parts we’ll land on next week with this group is on the topic of having a growth plan.  With this, we explain some of the gaps each of us face as we step out to grow.  One of these being The Assumption Gap adapted from the 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth.

The Assumption Gap says, “I assume I will automatically grow.”  I believe most people have good intentions and assume those good intentions will become great deeds done.  But how many times have you intended to call a friend, family member, or co-worker who had been sick or could use an encouraging word, only to let time pass and your good intention never happened?

It’s no different with personal growth.  Unless we schedule time for growth it won’t happen in our day to day journey and we can find ourselves drifting along in life with no...

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Professional Development Examples

Leading up to this point, we’ve looked at several answers to Why is Professional Development Important? and we’ve worked through several key things we each need to consider as we set our Professional Development Goals. While that should serve as a reasonable foundation that we can build on as we’re intentional about growing professionally, there’s no reason we should feel like we’re alone in the process! Having strong examples to follow can help the process go much more smoothly…

Let’s face it, no two people will follow the exact same journey when it comes to their professional development. We all have different experiences we’re building on and it’s extremely rare for any of us to have the same long term goals - especially when we’ve invested the time and energy necessary to gain the kind of specificity my friend challenged me to get. But regardless of where we’re coming from or where we’re heading,...

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Professional Development Goals

Through the last few messages, we’ve taken a look at some data answering the question Why is Professional Development Important?... I closed last time by emphasizing that there’s no such thing as a one-size-fits-all approach and promised to work through some things each of us need to consider as we’re moving down our own growth path. But before I cover a few examples, let’s be sure we’ve all got the right thought process. Without that, the rest may not even matter…

More than a century ago, James Allen said that “people are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves; they therefore remain bound.” Oh my goodness! What if Mr. Allen was around to see the mess we’re dealing with today… 

All too often, folks want to be respected as a leader before they take full responsibility for leading. But that’s not where it stops! How often have you heard someone say that they’d be...

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Speaking of Benjamin Franklin...

I closed the last post with a quote from Benjamin Franklin, “an investment in knowledge always pays the best interest,” and I promised to circle back with a look at how we can each expect to get a solid return on what we invest, personally and in our organizations. Interestingly enough, that same idea was the topic of conversation for me and Cindy earlier today as we filtered through a massive amount of junk mail and looked at the two pieces that actually had a bit of relevance; our quarterly IRA statements…

As we each made career changes over the last several years, we’ve rolled what we had in our respective 401(k) plans into IRAs; partly to avoid the crazy tax hit we’d take with an early withdrawal and partly to maintain some potential to recognize some level of ongoing interest. While our risk tolerance for our investments are nearly as different as our behavioral styles, the historic return on our plans have been nearly identical. Cindy’s,...

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How to Improve the Recruitment Process

We’ve recently looked at the importance of recruitment and retention and we’ve dug into some key recruitment and retention strategies. Since much of that was focused on how much getting good at retaining great people can eliminate much of the pressure to fill a position with nearly anyone who has a pulse, we’ll change gears now to key in on how to improve our recruitment process so we’re reaching the right people; the ones who have the most potential to be a great, long term fit in the culture we’re so intentional about creating.

In a session that Cindy and I built called Building Buy-In Around a Clear Mission & Vision, we emphasize how important it is for the leaders in an organization to be extremely specific in detailing how the work that each team member is responsible for ties into to the end product or services the company provides, and just how much impact that has and everyone else it touches. (If you’ve not had a chance to catch that...

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Add This to Your Daily Habits & Win Big!

In creating a lesson for our Leading at the Next Level courses around the Law of the Rubberband, I’m reminded more every day on the benefits of stretching ourselves in order to grow.  This law says, “growth stops when you lose the tension between where you are and where you want to be.” There are the basic benefits from our own experiences in life but it’s not until we pause to consider how the stretches we have made in life changed our trajectory; that we are able to see the full scope of their impact.

If you have taught, trained, or spoken on a topic or engaged in a deep dive for another reason; you may be like me and realize how much deeper you learn when you need to research, compile, and articulate the information.  And not just the information, but the best parts of the information in a way that is interesting and relevant to your audience or learning.  And be sure to add your own experiences which allows your message to resonate at a...

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The Secret to Consistently Moving Forward

In James Allen’s As a Man Thinketh he shares, “People are anxious to improve their circumstances but are unwilling to improve themselves; they therefore remain bound.” 

When this quote comes to mind, entire periods of my life do as well because these are times I (Cindy) chose to remain bound.  In my defense, I had not yet learned about personal growth but I certainly knew I wasn’t where I wanted to be. I also knew I was choosing to maintain in life rather than get far enough out of my comfort zone to create the change needed.  

Suddenly, a life event threw me out of my comfort zone - like overnight. Not long after, I learned about personal growth and everything started changing for the better. Before I learned about personal growth and started applying growth principles to my life, I was filled with ambition without guidance and worse yet, without the willingness to get out of my comfort zone where all my dreams and goals were!  This...

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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.

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How Well Is Your System Working?

I remember learning the Law of Design which says, to maximize growth, develop strategies.  What a relief… I had strategies!  At the time, I had a system that allowed me to get two young children up each morning, safely delivered to school or childcare, as a single Mom and even get some form of exercise before they woke.  Granted, this was on days when no one was sick, had a bad night, or mornings when I faced a child who was attempting to be in charge of the house… and everything else for that matter. 

Life felt more like survival than a sense of thriving but at least I had a system, right?!  I didn’t say it was always pretty but it was always attempted and helped us have structure even on the tough days.  It wasn’t until I delegated responsibility to my children that we were able to create good habits and have a smoother transition each morning, not to mention more fun together!

The truth is…we all have a system. ...

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A Firm Grip on an Empty Sack...

I had worked hard, doing all I could to hone the skills I needed to become truly effective in the role I held. I had really studied some of the most effective trainers, both within and outside of the behavior-based safety world, so I could excel in something that was incredibly difficult for me just a few years earlier. As I shared in the last post, it wasn’t long after I had really immersed myself in this process that I found myself traveling to facilities across North America to train other teams on the process itself and the successes we were beginning to have at my home facility. 

High school educated (kinda) and in my mid 20s, regularly meeting with plant managers and their executive teams, corporate leadership, and other high falutin folks, giving them my advice on what their next steps should be to get results with their struggling behavior-based safety initiatives… I don’t remember being tagged in my senior yearbook as being “most likely”...

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