Recent Updates Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • feedwordpress 08:00:17 on 2018/09/20 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , ,   

    How to Stop Thinking Like an Imposter 

    The imposter syndrome is real and relevant.

    All of us at some point or another question our capabilities and competence. It’s easy to start down the path of wondering how you got hired or promoted over others and end up  waiting for people to discover how little you know or how lacking your skills are.

    It can happen to anyone—especially the smartest and most successful—but we live with our thoughts and have to be careful what we tell ourselves. And if you say too many self-effacing things out loud, you project a lack of confidence. Both the internal and external voices can do damage, and you need to shut them down.

    Here are the most common forms of imposter thinkingsee which are the most familiar to you and learn how to pivot your thinking.

    “I’m not as capable as they think I am.” This thinking is damaging not only to your self-esteem but also to your professional relationships. Think back to the last time someone in your workplace made a mistake or didn’t know an answer. Unless it’s a truly toxic environment, it’s unlikely that they were shamed and made to feel inferior for it. Trust your abilities, understand your limits and work to always know more.

    “I got this position because I was just in the right place at the right time. Someone else would do a better job.” Remind yourself how you got the job. If you were hired from outside, think about how hard you worked to prepare for the interview and how many people you beat out. If you were promoted, remember how hard you worked to earn it. Even if you were in the right place at the right time, don’t forget the unspoken part of that equation—you were there with the right preparation and the will to make it happen.

    “I don’t really like talking about it when I get a promotion or receive some kind of recognition.” Discomfort with being recognized for your accomplishments can stem from a sense of unworthiness—it’s not about the recognition but how you feel about yourself. Instead of dwelling on what you do and don’t deserve, focus on accepting what you have to offer and finding ways to use it productively.

    “I only got the assignment because everyone else was too busy.” Imposter syndrome can prevent you from seeing yourself as special in any way. You may be constantly telling yourself and others, “Oh, that was nothing. I’m sure anyone could have done it.” When this thinking strikes you, focus on doing your absolute best. Sure, lots of people can hit a baseball, but you’re the one who actually stepped up to the plate.

    “My success is nothing but luck.” If you attribute your accomplishments to luck, you may fear that you won’t be able to continue your success, which ties in to the idea that your achievements have nothing to do with your  competence or capabilities. Luck does play a role in every success story. If you’re reading this, for example, you’ve had access to education and technology—which puts you ahead of many people right out of the gate. Be grateful for your good fortune, but recognize too that what you’ve done with those gifts is equally important in your success.

    “It’s all my fault this didn’t turn out right.” Perfectionism and impostor syndrome often go hand in hand. The only cure for perfectionism is to remind yourself—as often as it takes—that perfection is a myth. If you’re human, you’re imperfect. Give yourself a break, acknowledge your imperfections, celebrate your wins and work on the things that you want to improve.

    “It’s all been a mistake.” The feeling that your success is in error is another way of discounting your own abilities and efforts. To help take ownership of your achievements, deconstruct them and think about all the learning and hard work that went into them. Those weren’t mistakes.

    Lead from within: The imposter within you has to start believing in yourself and stop thinking about what others are achieving if you want to succeed.



    N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: iStock Photo

    The post How to Stop Thinking Like an Imposter appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 16:15:33 on 2018/09/19 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , ,   

    Choose A Positive Attitude 

    From Joan Burge’s new book, Joan’s Greatest Administrative Secrets Revealed (2018)

    I HAVE BEEN SPEAKING on attitude since 1990. What I said in 1990 still holds true today. You have a choice when it comes to your attitude. You are not a victim of your circumstances. It is not what others do or say that matters; it’s what you choose to do with what you have and choose how you want to respond.

    Regardless of our individual circumstances, we all have one thing in common—we choose our attitude. That is great news because it means we can change it any time. If we feel the urge to get upset at someone, we can say to ourselves, “That’s not going to help the situation any. I am going to stop, think, and then speak.”

    Our attitudes are delicate and fragile. If we do not take care of them, we are sure to feel the effects—everything from the quality of our work degrading to fading relationships. Did you know that your attitude also affects your health and even longevity?

    The challenge people face with attitude is they read books, listen to podcasts, watch Facebook videos, or hear motivational speakers on the subject but have a difficult time truly implement­ing it. That is because motivation is an inside job. It isn’t something that happens to us; we have to create it. So, what can you do?


    Combat negativity

    Listen to what you’re saying to yourself. Instead of saying, “Nothing seems to be going right today,” mentally rephrase it to, “Wow, I’m really being challenged today to think creatively.” You are in control of your own thinking. You can change that old record and stop feeling like a victim. You can get support from family and friends, but you ultimately must take responsibility for your own attitude. Your sister may tell you that you look happy in the com­pany photograph but if you tell yourself … ‘happy’ helps her avoid telling me that I gained weight, you sabotage a compliment. Don’t.


    Set goals and make a specific plan for your career

    When you measure progress you feel in control. If your company offers continuing education opportunities, for example, and you complete two out of four successfully, ‘notify’ yourself that you’re halfway through the program. The proverbial glass is half-full and not half-empty. Most importantly, this is a solid achievement—one that is easily measured so you can hardly argue the point.


    Don’t belittle your job or employer

    Work provides you with a purpose, challenges you, puts food on your table, enables growth, and stimulates your thinking. Look at work as a gift. Be happy you have a job. It may not be ideal, but let’s be realistic, no job is ideal. If you aren’t feeling energy from your work, maybe it’s because you aren’t putting creative, positive energy into it.




    The post Choose A Positive Attitude appeared first on Office Dynamics.

  • feedwordpress 13:50:06 on 2018/09/18 Permalink
    Tags: ,   

    Impression Management 

    The client wanted me to turn eight unprofessional storytellers into professional storytellers in four hours. At completion, her company had hired a professional video crew to tape these people telling their stories in two minutes or less, based on the tips we shared with them. The plan was to show their finished video stories at a corporate meeting. The crew was available for two hours, so the client said surely, I had plenty of time.

    Realizing she didn’t understand the time frame wasn’t realistic, I offered options including bringing multiple coaches with me, so we had more time to help each individual shape, craft and practice delivering their stories.

    The client didn’t want to pay for multiple coaches.

    I suggested that we prepare over multiple days.

    The client said they didn’t have more than a day. She said when they recorded their stories on video, I would be there to coach them through, so they would be receiving professional help.

    Besides, she wondered, if eight stories are less than two minutes long, that’s sixteen minutes. She pointed out the camera crew is there for two hours, so even if it takes some longer than others, it shouldn’t take more than an hour to have everyone tape their stories. She said that’s what her boss wants.

    No matter who her boss is, it’s not realistic.

    Telling a clear, crisp concise story is not a born trait. It’s something learned, honed and practiced. With instruction, worksheets, some pre-work and a very structured session plan, I was confident I could help them tell their stories more effectively than when they first walked into the room.

    However, even seasoned professionals often need multiple takes and on-the-spot coaching requires starting and stopping. Expecting people with no real experience to sit in front of a camera and recite their stories on video to be shown at a corporate meeting is completely unrealistic.

    My client is what some would call a very ambitious worker who simply wants to know how to move a project forward in a way that gives the impression she is right on top of it. She wants to appear cutting edge.  The one who comes through. The term for this is impression management.

    There is nothing wrong with wanting to make a great impression. Most of us try to put our best foot forward so people will like us or feel they can count on us. Impression management is very important for leaders who want others to follow. But there must be a balance between authenticity and impression.

    In this case, the client could inadvertently be setting me up to fail, which will backfire on her. Instead of nailing it and impressing her boss, if we don’t deliver exactly what she wants, she will look bad. She will blame poor outcomes on us, even though she failed to heed our advice or speak up on our behalf.

    Impression management is defined as: “a process whereby someone tries to influence the observations and opinions of others about something”. For example, a manager might attempt to control information provided by a consultant, to give their boss the most favorable impression about what they can deliver.

    Baylor University Professor John Carlson has studied this behavior in the workplace and calls it “deceptive impression”. In his research, he labels people like my client “sycophant” which typically means brown noser. Carlson calls sycophancy the most highly used form of impression deception. He says these people do not provide genuine opinions or honest feedback to their superiors, for example, enthusiastically endorsing their superior’s idea even when they don’t like it.

    Interestingly, he concludes that sycophancy, has no significant effects on the relationship between the supervisor and supervisor’s evaluation of the subordinate’s performance.

    That leads me to believe the real losers are program participants and other employees, who could be reaping far more benefits if their superiors communicated clearly.

    In a similar event earlier this year, our team was hired to provide presentation training for a senior group of leaders. The client wanted us to teach her team how to become better presenters and provide “techniques to communicate messages”. Yet, she was unavailable for planning calls, didn’t respond to e-mails and despite repeated calls, failed to provide materials to help us prepare.

    After the program she said, “this was a terrific program and we all benefited greatly”, but observed the agenda “didn’t allow enough time for new comprehensive message development to be incorporated into the training”.

    On Sunday night, the evening before the program, she sent our lead trainer a multi-page wordy document of talking points and potential messages. No direction, no context. It was lengthy, written in corporate speak and difficult to understand. Then, without informing us, she sent the same document to her team. She instructed them to read it, use it to develop and write their own messages and bring it with them the next morning.

    These are people who have no experience with message development. They came to the program confused, stating they didn’t understand what they were supposed to do.

    What the client wanted and what she communicated to us were very different. Had she explained she was after comprehensive message development and subsequent presentation of those messages, we would have advised and structured differently.

    Like storytelling, message development takes time and is critical to an organization’s branding and marketing. Trying to do everything in one day is not realistic.

    Marge Piercy wrote a poem called To be of use. In it, she talks of people who strain in the mud and muck to move things forward. She writes “The work of the world is common as mud. Botched, it smears the hands, crumbles to dust. But the thing worth doing well done has a shape that satisfies, clean and evident.”

    Chances are, both clients want to do well. Like many, they are probably inundated, overwhelmed and buried in more work than they can handle. Hiring you is something they were told to do. Now that they’ve checked that box, they just want you to show up and deliver so they can focus on other things.

    The key to any successful project is clear concise communication. If outcomes fall short, sometimes it’s not a reflection on the work your team is doing, which is not to say that all of us should always be open to suggestions that help us improve.

    In case you’re wondering, the storytelling program was a huge success. Given the limited amount of time to turn inexperienced communicators into great storytellers, they did exceptionally well. The client said she was happy and her boss was pleased. However, she added, this should have been spread out over several days as they really needed more time.

    As for the other client, who was also trying to do so much in so little time, we set up a call and she took our advice. She wants us to allocate more time to facilitate message development with multiple teams before trying to help them deliver.

    Go figure. Sometimes, things just work out as they should.

  • feedwordpress 12:28:18 on 2018/09/18 Permalink

    Quick Tip #81: Boring to Brilliant – Use Strong Words 

    Turn boring into brilliant by eliminating weak words and replacing them with strong words to give you more command, authority and presence.

  • feedwordpress 08:00:45 on 2018/09/18 Permalink
    Tags: , , , Important, , , , ,   

    10 Ways to Make Your Team Feel Appreciated and Important 

    Whatever we learned about leadership even a decade ago is outdated. Under the old model, leaders made all the decisions and the rest of the team went along.

    Today the concept of employee empowerment is changing the game. Giving front-line employees the authority to make decisions once reserved only for managers and leaders brings them a sense of ownership and gives consumers the experience of a responsive, caring organization.

    Here are some ways to make your team feel appreciated and important under the new model:

    Offer them safety. People will entrust their future only to someone they consider reliable; they want to know they can count on someone trustworthy, someone who will have their back when things go wrong . if you want to empower your people make them feel safe.

    Speak with kindness. It takes wisdom and determination to lead others not through power and authority but by inspiring and motivating them with words that are both truthful and kind. Kindness makes anyone feel valued and respected.

    Accept them for who they are. We have an all-too-human inclination to judge others, and overcoming it can be difficult. But the best leaders are those who don’t judge but unconditionally accept others, with all their strengths and weaknesses. It’s an approach that raises people’s self-esteem, reinforces their self-image and makes them enthusiastic members of the team.

    Demonstrate that you trust them.  Let them make decisions that matter and can impact the company. Verbal appreciation is important, and bonuses and other perks are always welcome—but ultimately, showing someone that you trust their opinion and expertise is the most valuable form of appreciation you can give.

    Be available and accessible. Adopting an open-door policy shows that you care about your team by being available and accessible enough that  they can always come to you with their input and insights. Let them know their opinions are valued and appreciated. Whether you regularly walk around or simply leave your door open, show your team that you’re there for them.

    Appreciate their efforts. Many leaders appreciate people for obtaining results, but the best kind of leader appreciates people for their effort. Letting your team know they’re doing a great job will not only ensure they continue to produce high-quality work but also increase their satisfaction.

    If you want to speed processes and still produce quality materials and services, focus on making your team feel appreciated and important. In return, they will reward you with hard work and loyalty.

    Lead from within: Leadership at its core can make or break teams. As a leader, you have the power to make people feel important and appreciated or overlooked and ungrateful. It’s your choice.



    N A T I O N A L   B E S T S E L L E R
    The Leadership Gap: What Gets Between You and Your Greatness

    After decades of coaching powerful executives around the world, Lolly Daskal has observed that leaders rise to their positions relying on a specific set of values and traits. But in time, every executive reaches a point when their performance suffers and failure persists. Very few understand why or how to prevent it.

    buy now


    Additional Reading you might enjoy:


    Photo Credit: Getty Images

    The post 10 Ways to Make Your Team Feel Appreciated and Important appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

compose new post
next post/next comment
previous post/previous comment
show/hide comments
go to top
go to login
show/hide help