The new beginnings start now. Ok, so now the holiday binge has passed and today is the first ‘real’ work week of the year.
What do you have on deck for the year? What is going to be the same, different or better this year? Now is the time to hit ultimate reset button because nobody will judge you if you want to reinvent yourself.
As for me, this is going to be the year I am going to get out of fourth gear and shift into overdrive. I participated in a great discussion at church facilitated by a friend of mine that reminded me of a few things you
should keep in mind when deciding to make changes:
1.) Motivation: Why? Is it out of fear, duty or love? Hyrum Smith formerly from the Franklin Covey empire talks a
lot about this and references Ben Franklin’s 13 moral virtues. Love is the ultimate motivation to help you overcome obstacles—even if it is love of yourself that motivates you to set down the pizza slice and go and exercise (in my case).
2.) Hope or vision: Part of the “SMART” goal setting process talks about having goals that are achievable
(the A). If you don’t really believe that your life can improve or that the goals are achievable, then quit now or drink a big swig of hope. Adversity will occur but if you have hope that once you turn the corner it will get better, it does amazing things to keep your heart in the game.
3.) Faith: Faith is a principle of action and by having faith in a process or a program is to say that you are willing to act or to do all that it asked. Sometimes just putting yourself in the right environment will get you started. Nobody drives all the way to the gym, climbs on a treadmill just to stand there. This is the Just Do It plug because without action you are just someone that loves yourself and loves to dream.
Best of luck to all of you this year! Remember to love yourself, don’t lose your hope and do it.
Happy Full Throttle Monday!
In honor of the new Star Wars movie, this article the came to mind the other day by James Altucher entitled “7 Things “Star Wars” Taught Me About Productivity.” This article is a cool reminder of axioms that can help all of us be more productive.
In the spirit of that article and wielding my inner Jedi, I will add 3 more things “Star Wars” taught me about productivity.
Just a few ideas, I am interested in feedback, and may the Force be with you.
“In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists.” -Eric Hoffer (Medal of Freedom winning Author)
As a learning professional, the most common excuse I hear is “I am just too busy to go training.” This excuse, to me, is a real head scratcher. With the world changing so fast, I don’t think we have the luxury of being too busy to learn; otherwise we may suffer the same fate of those struggling to stay relevant in today’s business world. Now please understand, I get it…we all get busy and need more time in the day, we’ve all been there.
With everyone being so busy, I wanted to share two tips I picked up from an article I read about how to overcome the most common barrier that extinguishes the fire of the life-long learner.
#1 Make it a priority
In most cases, we get to choose how you spend your time. Choices we make every day dictate how much or how little time we get to focus on a project. Learning is no different except there is no deadline on your education; spending 30 minutes here and there is not a huge sacrifice IF you make it priority. Mobile learning such as podcasts or audio books are easy to listen to while you are crunching numbers or working on a project. If you make a conscious decision to make learning a priority, the time will be there.
#2 Change your idea of learning
Learning does not always mean attending a class. In fact most learning happens outside the walls of a classroom or via online training. We can create opportunities to learn new skills by perhaps re-engineering the way we do our work/project or to go to lunch with a mentor, coach or friend just to discover solutions to work/life challenges. On our individual development plans IHS prescribes the 70/20/10 model to learning. This model suggests that our learning should come from 70% is on-the-job, 20% from others and 10% from class.
As a Talent Development partner, I am committed to helping YOU and YOUR team being the best in your field. I would invite you to consider how you view and prioritize learning and perhaps consider how to reignite the fire for learning that you once had.
For the rest of the article I referred to here is the link (it’s a long article, just a warning):
I recently listened to a leadership training conference and I was reminded about some of the most important factors that go into developing leaders. Sometimes when leaders are thrown into the fire they experience a significant growth but it comes at a huge cost or major brain damage to the individual or the company. Here are three suggestions to help build more effective leaders without all the mess:
1.) Give them, tell them, and show them the love and trust. What I mean by trust, give them the ball and let them run. Micromanaging, constantly questioning decisions or methodologies will paralyze your leader and will likely make them underperform because they will just wait for you to tell them what to vs. taking action.
2.) Be clear about expectations. This relates to point number 1. If you have an idea of how something is supposed to look when completed or what success looks like, tell
them! Be very clear about the end result and then let them fly. Just remember, if they fail or the results don’t look right, if you did not take the time to spell out the expectations, whose fault is it?
3.) Train, train, train! Take the time to train your people. Make the investment in your
team. No professional ever achieved success without having the necessary tools
and training. Even Michael Jordan had to be taught the rules of the game. The
business world is way too fast and too much is at stake to hope that good ole on
the job training will be enough. As Stephen Covey would say, “if I had two hours
to cut down a tree, I would spend one hour sharpening the saw.” While this
statement can have other applications, it seems to be very appropriate when it
relates to training new leaders.
There is a ton of great talent out there in the job market; it just often needs just needs a bit of polish and for someone to take the time to develop and coach. So when you find that potential leader, show them that you trust them, clearly spell out the expectations and provide them the training they need and you are on your way to creating a work-place culture people want to be a part of.
Inspired a bit by a quote I read by Richard Branson….
“If someone offers you an amazing opportunity and you’re not sure you can do it, say yes—then learn how to do it later.”
Say yes, and then figure it out. I love it, what a great attitude! Often times I feel that amazing opportunities either pass us up or we consciously pass up because we are afraid. Now many of you would say, I am not afraid, well here is how fear sows up: fear in the form of reluctance, fear in the form of lack of faith in self or your support network, fear of being ridiculed or lose position, fear of failure.
Be not afraid. The world is ours to conquer and by going out and taking new opportunities you may discover new strengths or new paths that will ultimately lead you to greater heights or exposed to talents that lay dormant.
So what do you do if do say yes and you are in over your head? Here are a three tips:
From time to time you find yourself going off on weird paths or derailing from your ‘big plans’ or goals. It is in those moments you have to figure out how to hang on tight, survive and dig out. The secret is to just do it! I find that the times that I sit around and plan or strategize are just wasted. I have countless pages in my journals and thought books outlining how I am
going to do to _____ only to discover that a week or so later I am failing or falling short.
Here are a few tips to share if you struggle like I do:
1.) Stop fretting about barriers: there are a million and one reasons
to not _____(fill in the blank). By fretting about potential barriers you are essentially handicapping yourself and limiting yourself from doing something that you know if your heart is possible. Stop telling yourself why you can’t and tell yourself why you can.
2.) Clarify your goals: having a crystal clear picture of what you want, to the extent that you can see, hear, taste, feel that the goal has already been achieved is key to the success. I have shared this before; if you don’t think that the goal is possible or all you see are the reasons that you can’t achieve, you will never achieve the goal (or at least not on purpose). So, sit down, go for a run, roll around or do whatever you have to do to get crystal clear on your goals.
3.) Act first, analyze later: I can’t think of how many times I have dragged my butt to the gym or just sat down to write and by in the doing of the action I find the joy/passion/energy. If I sit around and think about it too long, the moment passes and I get pulled in another direction. Personal example: I really really hate heights. I have gone cliff jump serveral times in my life and my strategy is to climb to the top and just jump. The longer I look at that water, the worse it is...I just climb and jump. I don't enjoy it at all, still, but I do it.
I hope this helps! Get and stay engaged!
Happy Full Throttle Monday!
NOTE: If I am offering obvious advice, send this to a friend or family member that hasn’t quite discovered the secret that you have.
One of the things I have noticed a lot when working with teams leads is the desire for control; the need to know what is going on at all times, to have an opinion on all decisions and to sign off on all transactions. Now, to be fair there are quite a few things that do need supervising and approval, but it is not everything.
One of the characteristics of high performing companies and organizations is a clearly defined set of principles and beliefs (P&B) that motivate and dictate all decisions made by both management and associates. If you want some good examples of this, check out Outback Steakhouse and Marriott International. These P&B’s need to published everyone, used for new hire selection and on boarding engraved into associates where they become part of everyday vocabulary. I have seen first-hand how powerful this can be…and more importantly as a manager it saves you from a ton of “may I speak to the manager?” requests from customers.
A wise man once said about how he governed (managed) a large group of people, “I teach correct principles and they govern themselves…” If you teach your people correct principles and allow them to make decisions that will help generate success, however you define it, you will find that your business will flourish and grow in ways you never thought possible because you have a team of ambassadors of your business plan and ideals. If you clamp them down and put policy and procedures ahead of people…you will find much frustration and lack-luster engagement (even if they don’t show it).
So, let them fly; be ok with a little less control than you may like but protect your investment by giving them a set of P&B’s they can follow and own, the tools to be successful and you results will be amplified.
As I was talking to my son tonight, I shared with him the idea that you are
truly in charge of your life and nobody else. I believe this to be true, however
for whatever reason we sometimes wake up to find ourselves victims of external influences and we developed behaviors or habits that we never thought we would have.
How do we break from these? I won’t go academic and to state some statistic that states it takes 14 days or 30 days to create a new habit or any of the other cliché advice, but I will share four tips that have helped me when I have wanted to create a new habit (or ditch a bad one).
1.) Define the habit you want to develop. Not only state it, but actually flesh it completely out to the extent that you can see
it, taste it, hear it, etc. It needs to be so crystal clear in your mind that it as if you already possess the habit. When it comes to our personal behavior or goals, our brains don’t necessary the difference between fantasy and reality. Meaning: if you can see
it, you can do it.
2.) Whether it’s true or not, I love the concept of the vikings who, when attacking a village, would go ashore and burn their ships so that there would be no option for retreat. If there is anything that would be a road block for you to your new habit, get rid
of it. For example, if you are trying to stop eating junk food, rid your house completely of all junk food. The fast track back to the old habit is to be surrounded by the cues that contribute to the old habit. Burn the ships!
3.) Start changing your behavior NOW. I meet people all the time that want complete a triathlon or run a marathon. My first piece of advice is simply sign up, pay your money. If you are serious about change do whatever you have to do NOW, to commit. If you are going to change, don’t allow yourself to have more time for excuses.
4.) Build your all-star team. If you consider anyone that has won a gold medal, they usually have a huge support team that are just as much (if not more) invested in the success of the athlete as the athlete. Share your goal habit, share your potential pit-falls and road blocks, ask for help and enroll your team to help.
You have the power to be whoever you want to be. If you don’t like who you are or what you are all
about, change it…today!