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  • feedwordpress 20:39:21 on 2018/12/18 Permalink
    Tags: , , satisfaction,   

    Lessons Learned at UPS: Keep Calm and Carry On 

    2:11 p.m.

    I went to the UPS office to ship a small package before 3:00 p.m. which was the last pick up of the day. One woman was being waited on and there were two other people in front of me. However, the counter clerk appeared efficient, so I assumed the line would move quickly.

    Assumptions can be dangerous.

    The woman being waited on said she didn’t want to send her package through UPS. She just wanted to know what it would cost so she could compare it to other services. The employee was trying to determine a price but needed to enter information into the computer to be accurate. She didn’t have the information he needed and became irritated at him. Still trying to help her, he Facetimed with his supervisor. The supervisor couldn’t fix it, so he called a technician who promised to be at the store within ten minutes.

    At this point, the woman chastised the employee, said she didn’t understand why he couldn’t understand what she was saying and stormed out of the store.

    2:31 p.m.

    Next customer. This man gave the UPS clerk a package sealed in a United States Postal Service (USPS) envelope. The clerk explained that it couldn’t be sent in a USPS envelope from a UPS office as they were two different organizations. Clearly irritated, he began to give the worker a hard time. Once again, calm, polite and patient, the UPS man tried to find a solution and asked the customer if he had ever sent anything from UPS before. This way, he explained, he could look the account up in the computer and see what he could do. The customer responded, “let’s just pretend I have.” More explaining from the clerk. More defiance from the customer.

    2:50 p.m.

    Enter the UPS delivery man. He came to collect packages for his final pick up of the day. The woman in front of me interrupted the man in front of her to ask the clerk if she could get her package onto the truck. I said I had also come early to make sure my package went out today.

    The defiant customer turned toward me and exclaimed “are you blaming me for the delay?” Not wanting to end up as a post on social media that might go viral, I calmly said I wasn’t blaming anyone and just wanted to get my package out. The insolent customer muttered something to the clerk and stormed out of the store. The clerk thanked her for coming.

    Two down. One to go.

    3:04 p.m.

    The woman in front of me was returning a pair of shoes. Easy. I’d be waited on in no time. So, I thought. She originally purchased the shoes in a size 7 she told the clerk. Those were too small she continued, so she ordered them in an 8. They were shipped to her boyfriend’s house in another state, but her boyfriend broke up with her. She thought he loved her, but it turned out he has mental problems. He’s a mental health counselor, but in her opinion, he is the one who needs counseling. Anyway, she continued explaining to the UPS person behind the counter, she’s returning the size 8 because she thinks they are too big, but she’s not sure. They fit correctly at the toe, but her heels kept popping out. She wants to make sure that the return package shows her address and not the ex-boyfriend’s address.

    3:12 p.m.

    She also wrote a note explaining the situation that she’s included in the package. Would he like to hear it? Well, she’ll read it to him to see what he thinks. When she was done, she asked him if he thought it sounded okay. He nodded.

    At this point, I wasn’t sure whether I was really awake, or I was having a bad dream.

    3:22 p.m.

    The delivery driver returns. The shoe woman leaves. My turn. The clerk asks me if I’ve ever shipped from UPS before. I reply, “let’s pretend I have.” Not understanding my attempt at humor, I provided the information he needed, and he quickly completed the transaction.

    3:29 p.m.

    More than one hour later, I finally leave the store.

    Talking does not equal communication. Yet, many of us provide too many details, tend to over-explain, send long wordy emails and deliver hour long presentations that could have been presented in fifteen minutes. The results, especially at work, could be significant.

    If you’re not fully attentive, you may miss an email with important information. If you’re too busy talking and not listening, you may botch an important deal. If you’re too long winded, you could blow a job interview because you’re rambling, instead of making key points. Besides, according to author Joseph McCormack, our brains can’t handle it.

    McCormack says the human brain has the capacity to absorb 750 words per minute, but the average person can only speak 150 words per minute. That means an extra 600 words are floating around in there which gives us more time to tune out and get bored. So, if we’re chastising a worker, babbling to a clerk or taking too long to get to the point, chances are that person isn’t really hearing us.

    What’s the fix?

    Time Testing

    In our programs, we challenge people to present information in different time increments. For example, if their presentation is thirty minutes, we ask them to deliver it in thirty, twenty and even ten minutes. The results are typically astounding. Speakers start honing in on what’s important, eliminate unnecessary details and command attention for longer periods of time.

    Hit the Headline

    Since attention spans start dwindling after ten seconds, it’s important to grab attention as soon as you speak. Like a great headline that draws you in, your first few words should do the same. Make your most important point as soon as you start talking.


    There are many reasons people ramble including nerves, trying to impress and being unsure of how to draw others out. In business however, we observe the lack of preparation techniques. That’s not to say people don’t prepare. They do. But, instead of trying to cram ten pounds of information into a two-pound bag, learning how to effectively use message models will help even the most seasoned presenters condense information.

    Back to the UPS office. Perhaps the real communication lesson learned is from the UPS clerk. Attentive, calm, resourceful and patient. He was also outwardly non-judgmental, which is difficult when people appear hostile. He showed us that it’s important to take all kinds of communication seriously, but not personally. He barely talked. He just listened, which signals he understood their frustration even if he couldn’t fix the problem to their satisfaction.

  • feedwordpress 09:00:22 on 2018/12/18 Permalink
    Tags: Complaint, , ,   

    11 Things Employees Complain Most About Their Leaders 

    As a leadership coach, I constantly hear people complaining—sometimes with good reason. Here are some of the top complaints I hear about leaders, with a positive action for each. Ask yourself if any of these sound like something you and your coworkers say. If so, start working to create the change you need.

    My leader makes everything urgent. When everything is always top priority, nothing ever really gets done. Let your boss know that you need to understand priorities so you can focus on the most important things.

    My leader is controlling. It’s always demoralizing when decisions are made and announced without any input from others. Demonstrate for your boss that inclusion is the secret to innovation and creativity.

    My leader is not genuine. Sometimes there’s a disconnect between who a person says they are and what they demonstrate. Things don’t match up. Make sure you maintain for yourself the importance of authenticity in words and actions.

    My leader is unpredictable. With this kind of leader there’s never a dull moment, but not in the good way. Inconsistency causes people to always be on edge. Do everything you can to steer your organization—or at least your team—toward consistency.

    My leader micromanages. If the leader always thinks they can do everything better than anyone else, why should employees put forth an effort? Starting with small projects, try to persuade your boss to let you go at things on your own.

    My leader is never satisfied. It doesn’t matter how much you do, this leader is always saying, “You could have done better.” Ask your boss in advance about expectations for success.

    My leader is indecisive. Too many leaders that have “paralysis of analysis” and can’t make a decision. And everyone waits. And waits. And everything feels stuck. Help your boss with making decisions by talking them through and guiding them to a conclusion.

    My leader withholds information. When you don’t have all the information you need, you can’t succeed. Ask specific questions and offer to help with fact-finding.

    My leader gets defensive. When you can’t talk to your leader about a problem without a defensive response, it’s time for a different approach. Instead of bringing the problem, approach your boss with lots of potential solutions—even if you have to call them directions or strategies.

    My leader is lazy. With some leaders, it’s not “Do as I do” but “Do as I say, because I’m not doing anything.” Challenge them to become a co-creator on your projects.

    My leader is always distracted. Sometimes leaders appear so busy that no one ever seems to have their full attention. Make sure your boss is present and attentive by catching them at the right moment and grabbing their attention with a well-organized set of questions and ideas.

    Negativity in the workplace costs billions of dollars and impacts the morale, productivity and health of individuals and teams. We all have complaints about our leaders and bosses, and many are warranted. But whether the complaints are mild or serious, we don’t have to become the victim of our circumstances—we can always do something about it.

    Lead from within: Complaining is never an effective strategy. There is always a positive action you can take to deal with any complaint you have about your leader.


    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 11 Things Employees Complain Most About Their Leaders appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 09:00:47 on 2018/12/17 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , , Retirement,   

    The Difficult Day Every Leader Has to Face 

    At some point every leader has to face what is for many a difficult day—the day they are no longer the leader. Maybe they’re retiring or just slowing down or moving on to something new.

    The reason for the departure isn’t as important as the work that precedes it. Every leader should have a succession plan in place. (Even if you’re young and plan to stay where you are, you should still prepare for the remote possibility of a sudden illness or accident.) If you haven’t yet made a plan, here are some guidelines that can help:

    Take your time. A great plan can’t be put together overnight, but the time to start is today. Start by sketching out your areas of responsibility, the reporting and governance structure of your organization, and any parties—team members, colleagues, board members—you want to have input into your planning.

    Groom those with potential. Identify the people in your organization you believe have the potential to be great leaders and begin to teach, coach and prep them. When you invest in your organization’s future leadership, your influence remains long after you’ve left.

    Recognize your emotions (and understand they’re normal). As in many other areas, the best leaders are those who know how to manage their emotions. They don’t allow themselves to be blindsided; they give themselves healthy outlets for voicing and expressing what they’re feeling so when the day does come, the emotions aren’t overwhelming.

    Map your second purpose. I believe our lives comes in stages. For many of us, the first purpose consists doing what’s expected of us, and our work life is driven by the arc of our career. When that stage is over we can move on to our second purpose, where things slow down and we spend our time on things that align with our values.  It’s time to be intentional about where you spend your time and energy.

    Let go and move on. Once you’ve decided to move on, the worst thing you can do is to not let go. Trying to keep hold of the reins leaves you—and everyone around you—in limbo. Especially if you’ve spent years or decades in control, it may be among the most difficult challenges of your life—that’s why you have to prepare far in advance.

    Learn your lessons. Sometimes looking back can help you move forward. Reflect on all the struggles, the lessons you’ve learned, the strengths you’ve developed, all the connection and growth and regrets of your career as leader, and you’ll attain a greater awareness of yourself and where you’re headed.

    When the day comes that it’s time to change seasons, it will be a much easier and more fulfilling transition if it’s handled with care for all concerned—yourself, your organization, and the new leadership.

    Lead from within: Every succession plan will be different, but the only way to know what’s next is to be prepared long before the day arrives and it becomes difficult.


    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 The Difficult Day Every Leader Has to Face appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

  • feedwordpress 21:00:38 on 2018/12/12 Permalink
    Tags: , , , ,   

    Joan’s Naughty and Nice List for Assistants 


    During a Facebook Live event Joan Burge, Founder and CEO of Office Dynamics International, had discussed her Naughty and Nice List for Assistants. This discussion highlighted many great things that can be practiced in the office as well as actions that should be avoided. In the middle of the live stream, Joan asked the viewers to give her some examples of naughty behavior practiced in the office as well as some nice behaviors.

    Be sure to watch the video for some great, funny, and “oh my gosh” kind of answers.  Special guest appearance by Melia!


    And here is Joan’s list!


    • Not adequately preparing your executive for a trip
    • Gossip about your peers (or anyone else)
    • Take on too much work
    • Multi-task
    • Bring your bad attitude to work
    • Not be a team player
    • Withhold information from others
    • Be stagnant in your growth or education
    • Text or read messages while others are talking to you
    • Ignore signals that you are under too much stress
    • Intentionally not give your boss an important message
    • Spike your boss’s coffee



    • Give your best every day
    • Be patient with others
    • Care about your executive’s success
    • Take the initiative
    • Remind your executive of important meetings
    • Share your knowledge with your peers
    • Be a leader
    • Champion a cause
    • Make time for yourself
    • Make others look good
    • Listen to others when your opinions are different
    • Be organized and ready for your day
    • Gather a group of your peers for a mini training session
    • Let your executive know that you appreciate him or her
    • Give yourself a BIG pat on the back at the end of the day!


    ©Copyright Office Dynamics International 2018.

    The post Joan’s Naughty and Nice List for Assistants appeared first on Office Dynamics.

  • feedwordpress 09:00:09 on 2018/12/12 Permalink
    Tags: , , , , , , Performance Reviews,   

    Why You Should Ditch Your Performance Reviews 

    Every year, more and more organizations are ditching annual performance reviews. If your company is still holding on to this outdated practice, maybe this should be the year you let it go.

    Think back over the process for annual reviews and how much time and effort they take—preparing the reviews, discussing them, writing them up, sending them through approvals. It’s a huge chore, a big commitment of time that you (or someone else) can’t devote to the things you’re supposed to be accomplishing.

    The biggest problem with annual performance reviews,however, isn’t that they’re time-consuming. It’s that they’re done once a year,so important feedback occurs at a single point in the year instead of being given along the way. It’s a system that doesn’t allow people to improve in real time, making it frustrating for everyone involved.

    A better alternative is a frequent check-in,held monthly or weekly or at the end of each project, or on whatever time table works for your people, in which the employee answers six questions:

    What are your short- and long-term goals? Leaders should be aware of their people’s goals so there are no hiccups or surprises for anyone. Asking people to outline their goals for the immediate future and for the long run keeps you informed and—just as important—it keeps them focused.

    Are you satisfied with your role and responsibilities? There are always expectations of what needs to happen, and people can situate themselves for success if they know how their performance aligns with the company’s objectives, goals and purpose. Regular check-ins allow you to assess performance and provide support and guidance when they’re needed—not when the calendar says it’s time.

    What challenges are you facing? The quickest way to overcome a challenge is to treat it not as something to avoid or shy away from but to truly take it on and work through it. When people are facing particularly challenging times, a weekly or monthly check-in it will help you connect them with coaching and guidance, giving them a chance to think of the issues in a new way and keep things moving forward.  

    What can be improved or fixed? Encourage people to speak up on process issues, whether they’re simple or complex. When you do, you foster engagement and keep them thinking of ways to make things better. It’s great when people can have a say on how to improve things, not only for themselves but for everyone—and no one is in a better position to see where improvements are needed than the people on the ground.

    How can I support you? People work hard and put in tremendous effort,and knowing their leader cares will inspire them to do even more—not once a year until the good feeling wears off, but weekly and even daily. Listening deeply, taking in everything that’s being said and addressing concerns bring benefits to everyone involved.

    Are you engaged and satisfied? Engagement and satisfaction have an important influence on performance, and regular check-ins provide leaders with a way to assess and evaluate people’s satisfaction. Engagement and satisfaction should be assessed frequently so any issues can be caught early.

    Using frequent check-ins instead of annual performance reviews can provide better communication and constant feedback on an employee’s performance and engagement.

    Regular communication results in mutual understanding, and there’s no telling how much an individual will contribute to the team, the company and their own leadership when they are constantly being supported and guided.

    Lead from Within: Consider doing away with performance reviews and instead work to build a better relationship with those who work hard and put in tremendous effort. The happier your people are, the longer they will stay and the better they will perform.


    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 Why You Should Ditch Your Performance Reviews appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

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