12 Annoying Things That Smart Leaders Say

Words are powerful and can have a long-lasting effect on people…

Leaders are responsible for employee engagement, for setting goals, giving feedback and reinforce positive feedbacks.

Therefore, leaders have to be careful of the words that come out their mouth.

On one hand, they can say annoying things from time to time.

On the other hand, it’s not always easy to find the right thing to say.

Wondering what are the most annoying things that leaders usually say? 

12 Annoying Things That Smart Leaders Say #words #wordstolive by #leadership #leadershipskills #leadershipcompetencies journeytoleadershipblog.com

1. “It’s my way or the high way!”

Leaders who want everything they way tend to hire talented individuals to do the job but don’t trust them to do so or don’t give them the opportunity to exercise their expertise. By doing so, their team gradually lose confidence and morale.

2. “You’re wrong” or “Why didn’t you do this instead?”

There is more than one solution to a problem and there is more than one way than doing things.

3. “It’s none of your business” or “Stay in your lane”

Leaders who pull rank or hold back information try to retain power as much as they can and wish to establish a certain distance between themselves and their team.

4. “Let me finish…” or Interrupt people while the are talking…

It is important for leaders to actively listen before they speak and to value their team’s knowledge.

5. “I don’t pay you to think!”

By saying that, leaders reduce their team members to mere tools or objects.

6. “I’m not going to do your job for you” 

Team members usually come to leaders for advice and reassurance but don’t require those same leaders to do their job for them.

7. “Don’t waste my time”

Time is indeed a precious commodity but by saying that leaders impeded their team from suggesting innovative ideas.

8. “I don’t have time right now”

Leaders are definitely busy bodies but they make time for what is important.

9. “That’s not important…”

This statement has a tendency of devaluing team members.

10. “I don’t care” or “That’s not my problem”

Helping team members find solutions to problems is part of the job description of leaders.

11. “You are not as good as you think” or “You are lucky to even be here”

If a leader needs to remind a team member how great his or her job is then it is not that great to begin with.

12. “We have always done it that way”

Through that statement, leaders emphasize that there is no room for improvement or innovation.

Last words of advice!

When you have said a few annoying things, you can always recover by:

  • Being aware of your words.
  • Observing the impact of your words
  • Admitting your mistakes.
  • Calmly explaining yourself.
  • Letting go and moving on.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

 

 

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2021

Exactly What To Say: The Magic Words For Influence and Impact By Phil M. Jones

Most people don’t share their ideas or go after what they truly want because they are afraid of rejection and don’t know how to use the right words at the right time…

Below are 23 magical phrases that will get you to start conversations, share ideas, influence people, assist people in taking decisions and achieve personal success.

Exactly What To Say: The Magic Words For Influence and Impact By Phil M. Jones #book #books #bookreviews #influence #impact #,negotiation #negotiationskills https://journeytoleadershipblog.com

1. “I’m Not Sure If It’s for You, But”

This phrase is an opening statement, used to introduce a person, an idea, product or service, to remove pressure and to spike interest without going through rejection.

2. “How Open-Minded Are You?”

In general, people love to think of themselves as open-minded. Everybody wants to be open-minded.
Before making any statement, asking people whether or not they are open-minded allows you to introduce new ideas, gain their support, and having them agree with you.

3. “What Do You Know?”

When sharing ideas, some people feel the need to be right or demonstrate that they know best. By finding out what the other person knows before sharing your knowledge, this statement helps you overcome preconceptions, avoid debates and arguments when trying to share new concepts.

4. “How Would You Feel If?”

“How Would You Feel If?” allows you to understand what motivates people and what emotions trigger their decision making process.

The truth is that emotions and motivation tactics are used in all “areas of negotiation, influence and persuasion”.
Indeed, motivation is a reason to step into action and emotions are reason enough to make a decision.
Used effectively, motivation and emotions can be used to make people step into action.

5. “Just Imagine”

“Just Imagine” is employed to use people’s creative mind, to prop people into action by setting a powerful preface and to bring a decision into reality.

People tend to imagine the outcome of a decision in their mind before actually implementing that decision in reality.
That is why sharing a story before asking someone to make a decision is helpful and creates a picture in the mind of the other person.

6. “When Would Be a Good Time?”

This phrase prevents people from telling you that they don’t have the time to listen to you and subconsciously sets the idea that their will be a good time for you to make your point.

7. “I’m Guessing You Haven’t Got Around To”

“I’m Guessing You Haven’t Got Around To” is used when you want to indirectly ask someone whether or not they have gotten the time to do what you asked.

“I’m Guessing You Haven’t Got Around To” allows the other person to feel proud if they have accomplished what you have asked for or it allows them to save face and it gives them the opportunity to step up to the plate.

8. Simple swaps

Asking open-ended questions instead of closed ended questions is more effective for conversation-making.

9. “You Have Three Options”

Presenting people with three options reduces their choices and subsequently helps them through the decision-making process.

10. “There are two types of people in this world”

“There are two types of people in this world” is a sentence that assists people in making up their minds by making wonder what kind of people they actually are, by reducing their choices and allowing them to choose.

11. “I Bet You’re a Bit Like Me”

“I Bet You’re a Bit Like Me” is an opening statement that gets people to quickly agree with you.

12. “If… Then”

“If you don’t do this, then this will happen!” are conditional statements that we have heard since childhood, that most people still believe in and that will guarantee an outcome.

13. “Don’t Worry”

This phrase helps in keeping a highly stressful situation under control and improve someone else’s level of anxiety.

14. “Most People”

Putting “Most People” in front of any sentence, when making a case, makes people feel confident about their decisions.

15. “The Good News”

“The Good News” puts a positive spin on a negative situation and shifts people’s perspective.

16. “What Happens Next”

This statement explains the next stages of the interaction and leads the conversation towards a conclusion.

17. “What Makes You Say That?”

“What Makes You Say That?” maintains control over the conversation, allows the other person to openly express their objections and make a decision.

18. “Before You Make Your Mind Up”

The phrase “Before You Make Your Mind Up” is useful to make someone change their minds, switch their refusal to a potential agreement.

19. “If I Can, Will You?”

Some people find excuses or reasons why they cannot go along with the suggested idea.
Asking “If I can do this for you, will you do this for me?” opens the door for more agreement.

20. “Enough”

Finding out what someone else considers to be enough can encourage them to agree with you or your concept.

21. “Just One More Thing”

The words “Just One More Thing” allow the continuation of the conversation and the introduction of an alternative idea.

22. “A Favor”

People secretly wish that someone would do them a favor and make their lives easier.
Therefore, when someone ask them for a favor, people oftentimes commit to the task at hand or tend to agree with the idea.

23. “Just Out of Curiosity”

“Just Out of Curiosity” provides clarity on the other person’s thought process.

Review

In Exactly What To Say: The Magic Words For Influence and Impact, after years of studies, Phil M. Jones shares the chosen words that are able to create results, help influence and direct conversation. These 23 magical phrases could be used personally and professionally, in all areas of leadership, negotiation, and sales.

This book is recommended for people who:

  • Regularly speak for a living, who want to change the way they speak and are serious about their personal success.
  • Want to know what to say, how to say it and to whom in every situation.
  • Always wish to be prepared for almost every conversation.

Exactly What To Say: The Magic Words For Influence and Impact by Phil M. Jones is a demonstration of the power or words and the reason why they have to be used carefully.

Let me know below what you think about this book!

Favorite quote(s)

The subconscious brain is a powerful tool in decision-making because it is preprogrammed through our conditioning to make decisions without overanalyzing them.

Success in life and business is rarely achieved without the support of others. If you can do things that allow other people to help you achieve your goals, then the chances of you reaching them significantly increase.

Ratings 3.5/5

Author

Phil M. Jones

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2021

Phil M. Jones

Meet the author #author #biography #book #books #bookreviews #leadership journeytoleadershipblog.comPhil M. Jones is a motivational speaker, leadership and business growth expert.

Phil M. Jones is also the author of Exactly What To Say: The Magic Words For Influence and Impact.

Digiprove sealCopyright secured by Digiprove © 2021

4 Essential Learning Skills Every Leader Needs To Know Right Now

Throughout our life, we never stop learning.

By continually learning, you grow and open yourself up to new experiences and ideas.

Acquiring good learning skills builds up your confidence and your willingness to explore.

Wondering what are the essential learning skills that every leader should know?

4 Essential Learning Skills Every Leader Needs To Know Right Now #leaders #leadership #leadershipskills #learningskills #communicationskills #organizationskills #creativity #creativethinking #criticalthinking https://journeytoleadershipblog.com

What are learning skills? 

Learning skills are thinking skills and habits that you acquire in your childhood to help you learn and that you can perfect in adulthood.

Furthermore, learning skills is all about processing useful information, acquiring knowledge, self-regulating and making a sound decision.

Learning include reading, listening, focusing, remembering, confronting your understanding, practicing what you have learned, using the right tools and using time effectively.

1. Critical Thinking Skills

Learning is acquiring knowledge but not all knowledge is useful or will have a positive impact.

Therefore, leaders must develop critical thinking, become attentive to details, be selective of the knowledge that you acquire and store in your brain.

They must be able to think critically, make their own opinion and think independently, create their own experiences and increase self-awareness. They must also be able to classify and track their thoughts and ideas.

Furthermore, leaders must be able to break down, analyze, compare and understand a situation, an event or concept in order to reach a conclusion and take a measured decision.

2. Creative Thinking Skills

Creative thinking is the ability to be creative and to generate ideas.

With a sense of creativity, leaders are authentic, curious, open-minded, adapt easily and are capable of expressing themselves.

They are able to innovate, brainstorm with others, creatively assess a problem and come up with new and out of the box solutions.

3. Communication Skills

There are several ways to convey a message. Some leaders enjoy public speaking, some one on one conversations and others prefer reading or writing down their thoughts.

Leaders must be able to describe, share, argue, persuade, clarify, defend an idea, explain themselves and reach a solid conclusion. That way, they confront their own ideas and understanding.

They are also able to actively listen, evaluate an idea and engage with it.

4. Organizational skills

Organizational skills include time management, goal setting, schedule and event planning, productivity tracking, and progress measurement.

When leaders are organized, they tend to favor a clean and tidy workspace.

Being organized helps them alleviate the mental load, organize their thoughts, focus on the tasks at hand and meet their deadlines.

Organized leaders run the day and don’t let the day run them.

Last Words Of Advice!

Everybody learns differently.

It becomes useful to identify your preferred learning style as soon as possible.

 

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

 

 

Subscribe to Journey To Leadership

 

22 Things You Should Never Say At Work

If you are like me, then you have a serious case of the “Foot In Mouth Syndrome” which consists of saying things that inadvertently offend or embarrass people or yourself.

It is basically the art of saying things that you regret.

It is a real disease that plagues some of us, whether you are talkative or not, introverted or extroverted, thoughtful or not, mature or not.

To overcome this issue, we have to develop communication skills and tactfulness.

We just have to be extra careful to who we talk to, how we talk and what we say.

We just have to constantly monitor ourselves, filter ourselves more than usual, be more quiet than necessary, educate ourselves on our audience at all times.

We spend time fixing things and explaining what we meant.

We spend time avoiding expressions, topics and certain people.

22 Things You Should Never Say At Work

In the workplace, there are a few phrases that are tactless and unforgivable and that you must avoid at all cost.

1. Silence as a cure

Staying silent doesn’t help circumvent the issue.

I have learnt this the hard way.

When you are too quiet, people will usually fill in the blanks with negative thoughts. Nobody will say: Tim is quiet because he is shy, introverted or cares a lot about the words that come out his mouth. Instead, they will say: Tim doesn’t speak to us because he doesn’t like us or because he thinks he is better than us.

Moreover, when you are too quiet, people will soon disregard you and forget that you exist.

It is better to minimize or actively filter the words you say than to stay silent.

People make mistakes all the time. You will just apologize if you have to.

2. Unintelligible speech

Fear of saying something unforgivable can make us do crazy things like speaking unintelligibly.

Fear can make us do crazy things. Period.

Speaking unintelligibly constitutes an attitude of avoidance. By doing this, you are straining your interlocutor and creating misunderstandings.

Very soon, nobody will want to talk to you. It becomes imperative that you build up some confidence, articulate and speak at a respectable volume.

3. Offensive speech

When we find ourselves in a stressful situations, it feels convenient and relieving to swear.

Studies show that the people who swear the most are very honest (very honest about their feelings, I’d say).

However, in the workplace, not everybody is comfortable with offensive language and you wouldn’t want to damage your self-image.

The best option is to stay from curse words all together or replace them with better language.

4. “It’s not fair”

Life is hard. Everybody has their personal challenges and unfair moments.

If you have put in the work and have not been recognized or recompensed, it’s OK. Your prince will come someday.

Sometimes, you have been doing something wrong that you are not fully aware of and you may want to discuss your performance with your trusted circle.

If you have been on the receiving end of continual unfair treatment, it’s time to move on to another job where you can put your skills to work.

5. “I didn’t double check that”

Unless you are the most perfect being walking the face of the earth, you will want to double check your work.

This comment makes you seem full of yourself and you open yourself up to criticism.

Everybody is susceptible to mistakes and need to pay attention to details.

6. “I’m busy” or “I don’t have time for this”

In the workplace, you should be able to prioritize your tasks and manage your own time.

By saying this, you are stating your incompetence, your lack of organizational skills, lack of patience or your laziness.

You can find ways to communicate your business without being rude or ask to reschedule.

That being said, some toxic leaders give their employees more work load than a regular person can handle. If you have a toxic leader, just make it clear that the task is not feasible in the time demanded.

7. “I’m bored” or “I have nothing else to do”

If you are bored at work, then you are in the wrong job or you are not being challenged enough.

To get out your boredom, you can either ask for more responsibilities, show some initiative or just be quiet about it.

8. “I’ll try”

This phrase implies the possibility of failure.

It is better to say “I will” or “I’ll do my best” because you make yourself accountable for your actions and means that you will put your best foot forward to succeed.

The worst that can happen is that you fail to deliver. But, you did your best, you will learn from your mistakes and grow as a person.

9. “That’s impossible” or “There’s nothing I can do”

That is a self-defeating and limiting phrase.

It means that you are not solution oriented and that you don’t even want to try.

10. “But we’ve always done it that way”

Well, this phrase might sound familiar to a lot of people.

It has been said by a lot of people, especially if they are experts, have been in the same position for the longest while or are resistant to change.

Truth is, not because you have been doing it one way that it is the only or that it is the right way.

Instead, it is best to state the reasons why you may want to keep doing it that way.

11. “I know that”

No, you don’t know. Stop.

If you did, you would be working for yourself and conversing with yourself. You wouldn’t need to exchange information with somebody. You would be the greatest and surest source of information of the universe.

Even if you really did know something, you should discipline your ego and your need to demonstrate your intellect.

Chances are the person sharing information with you will not want to share again.

Chances are when you will want information, people will assume that you already know.

Chances are when you will want information, you will feel embarrassed to come forward.

12. Strong No

There is an unwritten rule in the workplace which is to never openly use the word no.

If you are a straightforward person, you might be tempted to use it. You may think that you are decisive and that you know what you want or don’t want.

However, you will look harsh and it would be very hard to come back on the no without looking indecisive.

There are different ways that you can say no without employing the word in itself.

You can simply give the real reason why you are implicitly saying no or say something to effect of “I have prior engagement” or “I’ll think about it”.

13. Unwilling yes

Saying yes especially when you don’t want to oblige may be just as bad as saying no.

It is better to grow a backbone, stop people pleasing (easier said than done) and learn different ways to say no.

14. “Sorry but…”

You can apologize sincerely (once) if you have made a mistake but sorry is rarely enough and you will have to put in the work to fix things.

There is no need to beg for forgiveness because the best apology is changed behavior.

15. “That’s not my problem”, “That’s not in my job description” or “I don’t get paid enough for this”

I understand this approach or why someone would use these phrases.

Sometimes, we want to mind our business, don’t want to step on people’s toes and get out the scope of our job descriptions. Meddling in others activities can be a huge source of conflict or seeming to eager to please can lead you to be overworked and underpaid.

However, these specific phrases give off the vibe that you don’t care, that you hate your job or that you don’t want more responsibilities. If there is an opportunity to evolve, you will not be chosen.

Instead, you can recommend someone for this task, express that you will take care of this as soon as you finish your more urgent and adequate tasks (which may take a while).

Appreciate the situation for what it is and take the opportunity to try new things and get out of your comfort zone.

16. “I don’t need help”

Employers value people who are autonomous, who don’t expect hand-holding or for other people to do their job.

The reality is we all need help from time to time whether we want to admit it or not.

Permanently locking yourself off is simply an ego move and asking for help sometimes is OK.

Furthermore, people will like you more if you ask them for favors or for help.

17. “You are wrong”, “You make no sense”, and “You misunderstood”

Even if this is true and even if the situation is heated, there is no need play the blame game.

The blame game never results in resolve but in more blame shifting.

When in conflict, you either want to convince the other person of your point of view or put an end to all exchange.

The easiest way out is to ask for further clarification or clarify your point of view and move on.

18. “You should have…” or “You could have…”

These phrases are confidence killers whether you say them to yourself or to someone else. Relax, mistakes happen all the time and eventually you have to keep swimming.

The most important part is to take responsibility for your mistakes and quickly find solutions to the problem.

19. “I may be wrong, but…” or “I don’t want to steer you in the wrong direction, but…”

These phrases denote your lack of confidence.

The truth is that you dismiss yourself before others do.

To boost your confidence, just state what you are thinking. If your statement is wrong, then it is wrong. There is no need for a full disclaimer.

20. “It’s not my fault” and “I am only following orders”

Well that’s an easy way out!

Some people refrain from taking initiative or making decision just so they can shift blame.

Shifting blame is the fastest to create tension in the workplace. Even if you have nothing to do with the mistake, find different ways to fix the situation.

21. “At my last job…”

This statement immediately puts people in defense mode whether you or talking about people or work processes because you start gossiping, comparing and criticizing.

It implies that you feel like you have been better places and you are not able or willing to adapt to your new environment.

Making nonconstructive or judgmental statements can ruin a career.

22. “I quit”

Sometimes, you are just going through a phase where you want to quit and give up.

There is no need to speak your mind out loud and let everybody know that you are on the brink of quitting.

Instead, take a break from what you are doing and if you are about to quit, move in silence.

Last Words Of Advice!

Communicating with tact is a skill that you can acquire with time.

Everybody puts their feet in their mouth from time to time.

So, don’t beat yourself up.

 

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

 

 

Subscribe to Journey To Leadership

 

10 Reasons Empathy Matters In Leadership

Most people believe that the best leaders have the highest IQ, are emotionless and analytical.

Indeed, empathy is seen as a weakness in the workplace. The less you have, the more you will succeed.

The truth is the best leaders are empathetic, compassionate, highly sensitive and have high level of emotional intelligence.

Wondering why empathetic people make the best leaders?

10 Reasons Empathy Matters In Leadership

Empathy is a strong leadership skill that helps leaders to connect with people.

Empathy builds compassionate leaders which consequently improves the health of workplaces.

Empathetic leaders understand what others need, are feeling emotionally and physically.

They rather listen than speak, they don’t need to communicate verbally because they pick up on verbal and non verbal cues.

#1. Empathetic leaders pick up on the emotions of others

Empathetic leaders are self-aware.

They understand themselves, pay attention to people’s non verbal cues and are able to perceive the emotions of others. As a result, they are able to easily relate to people.

#2. Empathetic leaders are a great judge of character

Empathetic leaders are true to themselves and notice inauthentic people.

They can easily distinguish a lie from the truth, which makes them highly ethical.

#3. Empathetic leaders are people persons

They put people first and use servant leadership style.

For the main part, they direct their attention on people and not on results.

They understand people and the motivations behind their behaviors. This also gives them an ability to build good relationships and avoid bad ones.

#4. Empathetic leaders are present

Empathetic leaders live in the present.

When someone is talking to them, they give them their full attention in order to sense their feelings and to access their emotions.

#5. Empathetic leaders are peace makers

Empathetic leaders enjoy their peace of mind. They want to get rid of conflicts or negative situation at all costs.

They cannot stand chaos or conflicts. So whenever a negative situation arises or whenever they sense negative emotions, they take it upon yourself to restore peace.

#6. Empathetic leaders create a healthy workplace

Being an empathetic leader is critical to the workplace.

Empathetic leaders have a tendency to calm people down and to build trust.

They set up their environment so that everyone can succeed.

Their behavior induces greater collaboration, increase performance and creates a healthier workplace.

#7. You are ethical

They have strong core values.

They follow ethics and work for the greater good.

#8. Empathetic leaders give good advice

Because empathetic leaders understand the origin of problems so well, because they know how to listen, people come to them for advice.

They usually are wise, solution-oriented, and possess the answer to most problems.

#9. Empathetic leaders lead with their intuition

Empathetic leaders lead with intuition to make important decisions. You sense where to go and what to do.

They have strong gut feelings and their gut is always right.

#10. Empathetic leaders know how to influence and how to motivate

They are attuned to what your team secretly needs and wants to succeed.

They know how to persuade and motivate people.

As much as they can step in other people’s shoes, they can change your point of view and influence you towards the same goals.

Last Words Of Advice!

Some empathetic leaders have roles that require their full attention and that challenge their empathy.

For that reason, most empathetic leaders evolve towards liberal and helping professions.

It is important for them to learn how to navigate people and negative situations.

  1. Spend time a few hours a day alone.
  2. Discipline your emotions.
  3. Observe the company culture and see how you can employ your empathetic leadership style.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

Acquiring Impressive Problem-Solving Skills In 6 Steps

Leaders are often faced with recurring issues in their personal and in their professional lives.

On a daily basis, they fight to retain talent, to keep their businesses alive, to keep up with the market, to increase their return on investment, to deal with clients, to evolve and to encourage growth.

Problems arise when there is a discrepancy between reality and expectations, when leaders are unable to successfully reach their goals.

Their ability to anticipate and to solve problems will determine their success and will increase their chances for promotion.

Wondering how to acquire problem-solving skills?

Acquiring Impressive Problem-Solving Skills In 6 Steps

What is problem-solving?

Problem-solving is a cognitive skill that is useful in challenging, problematic and uncertain situations that require resolution.

Problem-solving is uncomfortable, takes time, requires practice and need constant monitoring. This intuitive skill is also sharpened by mistakes and failures.

Furthermore, problems encourage growth and change in us. That is why problem-solving requires facing inner demons.

It also helps us acquire innovative skills, people skills, communication skills, data gathering, conflict management and analytical skills.

How to actually solve problems?

Problem-solving gives leaders the opportunity to deal with change, to handle conflict, to delegate, to humbly ask for help.

Leaders who are unable to effectively solve problems lack knowledge in their respective fields, don’t establish practical methods, don’t commit to one solution, fail to implement their vision or to understand the problem all together.

STEP #1 Work on your character

You cannot control most of the situations that you will face in life. However, you can control how you react to them. It is therefore necessary to work on your character and to:

  1. Know yourself, trust your intuition and understand that your ideas are valuable.
  2. Be mindful that problems arise every day and that you cannot solve everything all at once.
  3. Write down all the rules and core values that guide you so you can remember them in time of need.
  4. Be open-minded, explore other fields than your own and to frequent people from other industries.
  5. Educate yourself on your business. Read books and articles on your field.
  6. Avoid jumping to conclusions. Challenge your assumptions before you restrict your opportunities
  7. Be patient but take action before it’s too late and before the opportunity expires.
  8. Pay attention to other people’s opinion but don’t worry too much about the naysayers.
  9. Admit if you have made a mistake. Great leaders are able to face issues without shifting blame and shifting values.
  10. Embrace change and avoid criticizing new ideas.
  11. Welcome failure. Don’t beat yourself up or don’t blame yourself for failure. Most successes or most innovations have broken through from failures.

STEP #2 Defining & Understanding the problem

Problems are synonymous with difficulty, issue, trouble, worry, complication, obstacle or setback. Problems trigger fight or flight response when handling a problematic situations.

There is no need to immediately appear decisive or to impress people. You must first define and understand the problem:

  1. Get the information about the problem.
  2. Identify the complexity, the symptoms, effects and root causes of the problem.
  3. Take time to reflect on your situation and to observe.
  4. Talk to the people implicated in the situation.
  5. Look for patterns and for trends.
  6. Find analogies to your situation that can help spark ideas.
  7. Reverse the problem: find the opposite problem or envision a worse problem.

STEP #3 Solutioning

Anticipating problems is the best option. But, the key is to staying focused or finding a solution. You must be able to study all the possible solutions of the problem:

  1. Explore all ideas even if you think that they won’t work.
  2. Suggest solutions that would make the problem worse.
  3. Think about your past experiences when you have been put in sticky situations. It can be a conflict with your coworkers, It can be a discussion with your clients or situations with your family.
  4. Look at what is being done by experts and evaluate the opposite solution.
  5. Ask for help from people around you. You can use brainstorming, mind mapping or road mapping techniques.
  6. Remove yourself from the situation to clear your mind and gain a different perspective.
  7. Break down the situation into simpler components.
  8. Write down pros and cons of the solutions.
  9. Clarify the criteria that your solution must meet.
  10. Test the feasibility of the solution.
  11. Organize your thoughts and pick the solution that will maximize your return.

STEP #4 Making a decision

When you have evaluated all the solutions, it’s time to make a decision. One decision is better than none.

  1. Look up the “unwritten rules that you are about to break before making a decision.
  2. Weigh in the consequences of your decisions. Rapid decisions can have serious implications, especially if you are a leader. So, be aware of the economic, social, political challenges of your decisions.
  3. Luckily, the leader does not have to resolve every problem on their own. To make better decisions, involve your team in the decision-making process. However, the final decisions is up to you.
  4. Seek to solve the problem long-term.
  5. Take the necessary time to make the right decision. You don’t need to impress or to act fast, you need to act right.

STEP #5 Executing the decision

After finding the perfect solution and making your decision, start implementing it:

  1. Set goals and deadlines that align with your goals.
  2. Keep your goals in mind.
  3. Focus on the outcomes of the solution and visualize the best scenario.

STEP #6 Measuring your progress & Monitoring the problem

Unfortunately, problems don’t solve themselves and can grow as time passes by. If the roots of the problem still persist:

  1. Assess the impact of your current decision.
  2. Reward yourself if your solution is bringing positive results.
  3. If your plan doesn’t work, cut the losses and get back up.
  4. Ask for additional help. 
  5. Execute your plan B if you have one. Revisit the problem, start over the solving process otherwise.
  6. Take a break before moving on to the next problem.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

Empowering Your Team & Retaining Talent

Keeping a job for a lifetime at the same company is no longer a concern for employees. Nowadays, most employees are looking to explore, to evolve professionally, to grow personally and do not depend on one company to do so. 

With the amount of layoffs in the last generation, employees have learnt to mistrust leaders and corporations. They no longer feel empowered, committed, engaged, aligned with their organization or no longer think that leaders have their best interest at heart.

However, good employees are needed to reach company goals. Leaders should be concerned when several good employees leave in a matter of weeks, when employees start performing poorly, act disengaged, take too many sick leaves, skip meetings, arrive late, are unmotivated, are overworked, unproductive or underpaid.

Wondering what are the strategies and tactics to empower your team, to maintain a trust climate, increase employee alignment and retain talent?

Empowering Your Team & Retaining Talent

What is employee empowerment?

Employee empowerment is a loosely used term.

It mostly designates the way people feel about themselves at work, the ease with which they are able to use their strengths, to freely demonstrate their talents, to achieve their purpose, to find meaning and satisfaction in their jobs.

It also stems from their ability to feel productive, confident and in control in the workplace.

Furthermore, employee empowerment is a leadership style. Leaders must feel empowered in order to empower. Indeed, they must be able to maintain self-confidence, to manage their time, to gain influence, to effectively communicate, to listen, to reach their goals and to be open to learn.

In addition, an empowered employee doesn’t need permission to do his or her work, to create an appropriate process, to control the outcomes of his or her work, to develop a personal scope.

On the other hand, employees who are disempowered don’t openly critique the organization, don’t make open suggestions, don’t challenge the status quo, don’t know what is expected of them, and are often blindsided. When employees don’t feel empowered, they tend to leave.

What are the challenges of employee empowerment?

Deciding to quit is a long process that can be triggered by various traumatic, memorable and emotional events:

  • Lack of empowerment, of recognition, validation or compensation.
  • Lack of career opportunities and possibilities of growth.
  • Lack of challenge. This creates boredom, a need for a career change and a need for more responsibility.
  • Lack of purpose. In this case, employees feel like they are not operating at their maximum potential, that their strengths are not properly used, that their jobs don’t have meaning and don’t bring them satisfactionWork constitutes an important part of your life. Therefore, making it meaningful and empowering is necessary.
  • Career disillusionment. Employees feel like their career path is not as they believed it to be.
  • Workplace toxicity and leader’s unethical behavior. Workplace toxicity comes from the fact that core values and trust have not been instilled. This can result in being influenced, in spreading toxic behavior, in feelings of being marginalized or harassed.
  • Aggressive office politics.
  • Poor communication with higher-ups.
  • Work-life imbalance and lack of flexible hours.
  • Change in personal situation (health, family, …).
  • New sudden career opportunities.

Should you hold back employees who want to leave?

Retaining young employees is the most difficult because they need more care, more validation and more training.

To increase employee engagement and to compete for talents, most organizations resort to quick fixes that provide short them results. It is essential to:

  • Accept that employees are going to leave no matter what.
  • Accept that employees who are leaving are sure about their decision.
  • Accept that the decision to leave is potentially connected to your behavior, to the company’s policy and culture.
  • Hire appropriate employees for the job in the first place by directly asking them about their needs.
  • Conduct an employee exit interview and ask your employees why they want to leave. Doing so will help you fix recurring problems within the organization and reduce employee turnover.

How to empower employees and prevent them from leaving?

To decrease employee turnover, leaders must change their mindset and rethink the company culture. Empowerment can lead to higher levels of commitment, innovation, motivation, more productivity and better relationships.

  • Determine your core values. Have enough integrity to share and demonstrate your values.
  • Be an example, demonstrate the benefits of empowerment, act ethically and a teacher to your team.
  • Assess and improve your communication style.
  • Be fair at all times and don’t pick favorites.
  • Learn to cope with change. Don’t expect immediate change and the change you envisioned.
  • Build an environment that promotes inclusiveness and unity. For example, remove the traditional organizational structures to improve communication among workers.
  • Value your employees and their expertise.
  • Listen to your employees. Ask them for advice, let them speak freely and truly consider their responses.
  • Share your vision and your story with your team in order to motivate them towards a unique goal and to check if they align with it.
  • Set high but achievable expectations for your team. Let them know about it.
  • Clearly define everyone’s activities so they don’t step on other people’s toes.
  • Help your employees identify their purpose, even if their calling is not in the organization. It would be more rewarding for them and more effective for you to remove them from the team and give them some indication of an ideal career path.
  • Increase your employees awareness. Share information about organizational policies, processes, structures, standards, decisions.
  • Involve your employees in the decision-making process
  • Learn to delegate. There is nothing more frustrating than a leader who micromanages, who needs to approve every stage of the process, who doesn’t think that their team can have the workload without them.
  • Encourage people to take initiative and to solve their own problems.
  • Give your employees autonomy and more ownership of their work. Give them the freedom to reach the company’s objectives.
  • Allow people to take risks and to make mistakes.
  • Increase accountability and avoid the blame game at all cost, especially when something goes wrong.
  • Recognize, reward your employees and show appreciation for the work that your team puts in. Help them understand that their contributions at work have a real impact.
  • Request and provide feedback often. Give credit when it is due, provide coaching and training.
  • Have an open door policy, if possible.
  • Help your employees grow professionally and personally. Allow them to succeed and be the best. Make them look good and they will reward you with good work
  • Increase benefits, avoid overwork, allow flexible hours and leaves of absence.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.

The Importance Of Innovation In Leadership

Welcoming innovation and creating an overall innovation culture at work is not easy but necessary.

Most company cultures have very limiting unwritten rules when it comes to innovation. For the most part, innovators in corporate culture are seen as irresponsible, unmindful, nonconformist and disruptive. For instance, some organizations will not hesitate to shut down dissident voices and to punish rules breakers.

Furthermore, the longer you have been in a leadership position, the more you become complacent, the more you get stuck in your ways, the more you start believing in erroneous paradigms, the less you are willing to take risks, to change your processes and to innovate.

Wondering how to avoid complacency and to enable the innovation process?

Innovation Leadership

What is innovation?

Innovation is a natural or acquired process that is present as a core value in most organization and that can make all the difference. It is the ability to deliver new positive data, value, concepts and systems. Somewhat, innovation implies creativity but not the other way around.

Furthermore, innovation is a mindset but not everyone is able to trigger innovation. Innovative leaders are capable of:

  • Self-awareness and of assessing situations.
  • Creativity and of generating new opportunities for themselves.
  • Identifying issues, understanding them and exploring different perspectives.
  • Finding long-term solutions to problem and making strategic decisions.
  • Having a vision, short and long-term goals.
  • Performing at a higher level, effectively restructuring organization, implementing a vision and appropriately using their resources.
  • Communicating effectively.
  • Adapting to different circumstances, taking action despite the circumstances and reinventing themselves.
  • Taking charge of their behavior and their emotions.
  • Adequately handling failure and success.

Why innovate?

Leaders feel pressure to adapt to the market, to create new products, to maintain a stable work environment, stable results and still welcome innovation. Jump starting the innovation process within your organization will help you and your organization:

  • Stay relevant.
  • Gain a competitive advantage.
  • Remember that what worked in the past, will not necessarily work right now.
  • Demonstrates your effectiveness, adaptability, capacity to handle issues and to overcome challenges.
  • Pay close attention to the customers.

How to trigger and maintain an innovation culture?

Every organization has their own culture and every leader has their own norms. So, in order to avoid complacency and to trigger an innovative spirit:

  1. Live a healthy Work-Life Balance.
  2. Identify new ideas to integrate into your leadership style
  3. Keep an open mind, focus on the positive, give yourself the time and the opportunity to explore, always ask questions and always be open to learn. Pursue truth and knowledge.
  4. Challenge your own knowledge, your assumptions and your preconceived notions.
  5. Avoid using your life and work experiences to drive innovationQuestion and learn from everything: read, observe and explore more than usual. You can even look at other innovative ideas and see if they fir your situation.
  6. Get out of your comfort zonechallenge conventional wisdom and the status quo.
  7. Create a personal mission statement that measure your progress, that helps you follow through on your commitments and that incorporates your willingness to innovate.
  8. Rephrase a same issue multiple times to gain more clarification.
  9. Don’t hesitate to break societal rules to get where you want to go.
  10. Demonstrate that innovation is necessary. Incorporate it in your core values and in your actions.
  11. Listen to different ideas and appreciate other people point of views, especially if they are not related to the issue. However, this doesn’t mean that you will need to apply their point of view.
  12. Be confident in your vision and embrace change.
  13. Write down every idea that comes to you even if you don’t have the opportunity to use them.
  14. Learn to take calculated risks, to handle failure as well as success, to plan for the unknown and for failures, to celebrate success. Failure and success can inhibit your ability to innovate because you are constantly thinking of what could go wrong. It is therefore important to see failure as an opportunity to grow and to get closer to success.
  15. Analyze the time and the cost needed to implement your innovative idea.
  16. Identify the passionate people and change agents on your team. Besides, expecting people to be passionate, demonstrate your own passion and convey it to your team.
  17. Identify the people who are blocking your ideas in the organizationIt would be wise to share your vision with them and try to convince them.
  18. Ask for constant feedback and give feedback yourself.
  19. Empower your team at all levels, trust them, allow them to speak their minds, to find different alternatives to a problem and help them achieve their goals.
  20. Encourage dissenting voices who can challenge in new ideas and analyze their every aspect, who can identify areas in the organization that need optimization.
  21. Welcome brainstorming activities and filter out ideas with potential.
  22. Set deadlines to build pressure and to get more out of your team.
  23. Train your employees to hone their skills, to appreciate change and set high expectations for them.
  24. Avoid criticizing your team when they come up with new ideas and avoid shifting blame when something goes wrong.
  25. Remove your ego and potentially collaborate with your competitor.

Hope that I’ve helped you get it together on your way to leadership!

Don’t forget to like, share and leave a comment below.