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  • feedwordpress 09:00:31 on 2018/04/17 Permalink
    Tags: Blog, , , , , , Who's In Your Corner   

    The People You Have in Your Corner Matter 

    We’re surrounded with people most of the time—the people we work with, family, friends, romantic partners. Whether we’re aware of it or not, these people all have a tremendous impact on our thinking, being and living. That makes it worth pausing to ask yourself, Are these the people I want in my corner?

    Here are a few of the different kinds of people who may have an effect on your life. See if any of them seem familiar, and then decide how much influence you want them to hold over you. Remember that it matters who you surround yourself with.

    People who bring value. Many people in this world desire to help others. They are the makers—the ones who are all about bringing and adding value. They understand that the purpose of our lives is to add value to the people around us. They’re a consistently valuable presence in your life, so make sure you bring value to them as well.

    People who take from you. Most people are fairly quick to give and a few are wildly generous, but there will always be some who are wholly devoted to taking. They’re the ones who put on a warm friendly exterior to hide their calculated motives. It’s not unusual to have a taker somewhere in your life, but you can set firm boundaries to limit their influence and keep them from draining you.

    People who expand you. Some people seem to have a gift for building others up. Their faith in you makes you feel you can be bigger, stretch further, achieve more than you ever have. They’re constantly challenging you to be your best as they help you embrace your weaknesses and maximize your strengths. If you’re fortunate enough to have one of these people in your life, consider their influence a treasure and keep them close.

    People who shrink you. It’s rarely intentional, but some people have a way of letting you know you’ll never be quite good enough or smart enough for them, that you’re not living up to their idea of your potential. They behave in ways that are hurtful and harmful, all in the guise of caring about you. If you’re close to someone like this, it can be painful to realize their true nature. It requires that you be strong and consistently resist their messages, both the subtle and the not-so-subtle. You never know—sometimes the best path to connecting with your own strengths is for someone else to try to take advantage of you.

    Who’s in your corner? What kind of people do you surround yourself with? Remember that while everyone in your life is there for a reason, you need to know whose influence to embrace and whose to resist.

    Lead from within: Be picky about the people who you keep around you. You are a product of those you surround yourself with, so make sure it’s the best people.


    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 The People You Have in Your Corner Matter appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:00:39 on 2018/04/10 Permalink
    Tags: Blog, , , , ,   

    How to Lead People Who Are Smarter Than You 

    Steve Jobs, who was famous for his hiring and recruiting practices, believed a small team of A+ players could run circles around a giant team of B and C players. He was thoroughly convinced that the quality of the team was everything.

    Many leaders are reluctant to hire as Jobs did. They settle for dependable but less stellar teams—in part because they feel threatened or intimidated at the prospect of leading someone smarter than they are.

    Leading a team of exceptionally bright people does require skill, but as Jobs proved again and again, the payoff is well worth it. Here are some pointers for getting the most out of your own A+ employees:

    Don’t be intimidated. Leaders tend to think they need to have all the answers—and to be terrified when they don’t. But your role as leader is not to know everything; it’s to set the stage. That means working to sustain and support people who are more experienced, up to date and talented than you. It may feel disconcerting at first, but it will serve you well in the future. You do have to know enough to be conversant—so let your stars take center stage while you ask the questions, do the reading, learn and investigate.

    Confront your fears. It’s natural to feel fearful when you are leading people who are smarter than you. Whether you’re afraid of being shown up, of looking unprepared and foolish, or even of being passed over for advancement while someone who was below you rises above, face your fears and work through them. Then remember that hiring the smartest people is ultimately an act of confidence and smart leadership.

    Don’t micromanage. I’ve seen this happen a lot: a leader feels insecure so they overcompensate for what they don’t know by becoming a controlling micromanager. Remember, your role as leader is to allow the smart people to do what they do best. Support them but don’t hover. Keep your actions empowering and maintain strong relationships with your team members by providing support and resources and then stepping aside.

    Get educated. I believe it always helps to have a learner’s inquisitive mindset. If you consider yourself a student rather than an authority figure, you can more easily share your concerns and ask others to include you in discussions that will help you learn. Let those around you know you want to learn from them and be deliberate about creating opportunities to make it happen. You don’t have to try and become an expert, but gain insight into what your people do and it will give you the acumen you need to keep up with those around you.

    Stay vulnerable. If you hear that people are questioning your leadership capabilities, be transparent with what you’ve heard, and what you think, and what you plan on doing about it. Don’t go in trying to safeguard your ego. Instead, approach the situation with a mix of vulnerability and strength, and figure out how you are going to work together and support each other.

    Seek good counsel. Find someone who can listen to and advise you. It may be a peer, a coach, or a mentor. Speak to them candidly, share your concerns, ask for help. Sitting with fearful or anxious feelings often makes things worse, but seeking counsel might help ease your emotional load.

    Add value. As a leader, your role is best served when you are able to bring people together and be there for them in ways no one else can. The best leaders don’t always coach, but they do consistently add value by providing support and resources to their team.

    Lead from within: You don’t always have to be the smartest person in the room—you just have to have that person on your team, give them the support they need, and get out of their way.


    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:

     

    The post How to Lead People Who Are Smarter Than You appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:00:46 on 2018/04/03 Permalink
    Tags: Blog, , , Self Awareness.   

    The Most Challenging Leadership Skill of All 

    There are a lot of skills that make up good leadership, but there is one quality that is possibly the most challenging, that is self-awareness, because self-awareness requires you to focus on yourself—not the easiest thing to do for an outwardly focused leader.

    Why is self-awareness even important to leaders? Because when you understand your own motivations, you’re able to better understand the motivations of others. When you understand your own shortcomings and the struggle to overcome them, you can better coach others. When you can manage your own emotions, you can better control the emotional climate of your organization.

    Self-awareness makes you a more effective leader in numerous important ways. Here are just a few:

    You can relate to others. When you are self-aware, you understand how you instinctively think, and you’re able to relate to others. Your communication is deeper and your relationships are more meaningful. People gravitate toward leaders who can relate to them and their struggles.

    You can focus on others. A big part of successful leadership involves taking the spotlight off yourself and shining it on others. When you have self-awareness, you’re conscious of how your words and actions influence others. You weigh your words carefully and think about their effect, and you don’t alienate yourself from those around you by taking out your stress, anger, or frustrations on them. You tend to stay positive even in tough situations.

    You can empathize with others. Empathy is the oil that keeps relationships running smoothly and the fuel that keeps leadership going—it’s an ability that’s well worth cultivating. Empathy may feel like a soft, sometimes abstract tool, but it leads to hard tangible results. It allows us to create bonds of trust and gives us insight into what others are feeling or thinking. It sharpens our acumen about people and it informs our decisions. Empathy is more than just sympathizing—it means using your own knowledge of how something feels to improve relationships, situations and circumstances.

    You can receive feedback from others. Feedback is important for developing self-awareness—it’s often the only way you can find out how others perceive you. We all need people who will give us feedback; that’s how we improve, one of the most tried and true forms of leadership. Without it, you’ll find yourself operating in a bubble and not really knowing how well others are doing—or, for that matter, yourself.

    You can coach others. When you’re the kind of leader who understands yourself and what drives you, your team will respect you when you coach them about drive and motivation. This aspect of leadership is so important that the best thing you can do to prepare for coaching is to get a coach yourself. Coaching is great for developing your own self-awareness and helping others develop theirs in turn.

    You can lead others. Once you become aware of your own strengths and weaknesses, you have the power to use your strengths intentionally and to manage or leverage your weaknesses. When you can admit what you don’t know and you have the humility to ask for help when you need it, you increase your credibility. Leadership isn’t about being perfect; it’s about admitting what you don’t know and seeking help from others so you can lead each other to success.

    As leaders, we’re inclined to focus on others rather than ourselves. But turning your focus inward is beneficial in numerous ways. By developing self-awareness, you get to know what does and doesn’t work for you, and you learn how to manage your impact on others. Leaders with high levels of self-awareness have a deeper understanding of human nature and are more effective as leaders, because they deal with people positively and inspire trust and credibility.

    Lead from within: Self-awareness is one of the most important qualities you can have as a leader, and developing self-awareness is important in both your personal and professional life.


    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 The Most Challenging Leadership Skill of All appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:00:43 on 2018/03/13 Permalink
    Tags: Blog, , , ,   

    Getting Everyone on the Same Page (Does More Harm Than Good) 

    Getting everyone on the same page—that is, creating unity of thought and opinion—is a concept that’s highly valued by many leaders. It’s widely thought to make teams more productive and creative. But in my years of experience, that connection is far from reliable. If anything, just the opposite applies: getting everyone on the same page does more harm than good.

    The idea behind this “same page” fixation is that a unified team culture is superior. And that’s true to a limited degree—for example, a sense of shared purpose lends strength to any team. But when you don’t invite and accept differences you weaken creativity, you decrease innovation, and you reduce individuality.

    When you try to make everyone think alike, work alike, and believe alike, you weaken and demotivate the talented and skilled people you’ve hired. You may think you’re building a team, but in reality you’re undermining them.

    Don’t allow yourself to be lured into the “everybody on the same page” trap. Instead, commit to the kind of leadership that builds unity through diversity on your team, by doing the following:

    Appreciate each person for who they are, not who you want them to be. Recognition is motivating, and great leaders appreciate their people for who they are. Instead of trying to mold them into an image of what you want them to be, learn to appreciate their authentic selves, their individual backgrounds, and their capabilities. A solid mix of talents makes for stronger teams and more innovative organizations. Being appreciated for their true self is incredibly uplifting for any employee.

    Identify individual’s strengths and push boundaries. Get to know each individual person’s strengths, then motivate and inspire them to raise their own standards. When you believe in people they will do what they can to come through for you. Work to understand, encourage, and develop your team members’ skills and potential.

    Invite each to contribute and collaborate in notable ways: Too often leaders feel threatened by their people’s capabilities and talents and may even work to suppress them. But encouraging people to excel at what they do best is the soul of leadership—and it leads to great results. Maximizing and meshing talents is how projects get done seamlessly. It’s how you meet deadlines and develop innovative solutions. Collaboration is what teams are built to do.

    Have everyone own their leadership. Work to have everyone find ways to step up and show leadership at some point. Start by assigning them leadership over small projects involving a handful of people. When you do, you build not only a team but a team of leaders—inspiring growth and helping your people advance. Leaders aren’t born, they’re made when you allow them to own their identity and capabilities.

    Great companies, leaders and managers all focus on collaboration and on developing each person’s capacities and having them bring their individual gifts to the collective effort.

    Lead from within: People who come together create progress, and succeed together, but it takes a diverse group to make it happen.

     


    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 Getting Everyone on the Same Page (Does More Harm Than Good) appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 09:29:09 on 2018/03/06 Permalink
    Tags: Blog, Demanding Roles, , , , ,   

    How to Be Your Best In an Emotionally Demanding Role  

    I think most of us in leadership can relate to the experience of emotionally demands in the workplace. It may be more closely tied with some roles than others, but it’s common in every field among leaders and others who give themselves fully to the work they do.

    But it doesn’t come easily. An emotionally demanding role can leave you feeling physically and mentally drained. Work may become less satisfying and you may have problems focusing or thinking creatively—which in turn can lead to irritability, frustration and even depression.

    There are things you can do to help yourself—for your own well-being, and so you and your team can keep bringing your best every day. Here are some of the top techniques I discuss with the leaders I coach:

    Identify your strengths. Emotional demands can tax your confidence and self-esteem, so it’s important to know your strengths and build on them. When you make the best use of your inner resources, you gain power that will bring you through low times and difficult situations.

    Leverage your weaknesses. We all naturally prefer to concentrate on our strengths instead of our weaknesses. But—as you already know if you’ve read The Leadership Gap—I’m a big believer in learning to leverage your own weaknesses. As you go through challenging times, your strength will come not only from what you are strong in but also from the things you struggle with, from overcoming the things you thought you couldn’t do.

    Practice radical honesty. Studies have found that you can alleviate stress and emotional burnout by creating a climate of radically honesty—in short, being as honest and authentic as you can be. When people feel free to be themselves and to communicate their emotions, both positive and negative, workplace tension is reduced.

    Work on conflict resolution. In conflict, don’t let the little things divide you when agreement on the big things can bind you. Escalate or evaluate until you come to a resolution. Being stuck is among the worst things that can happen when you have a lot going on and you’re trying to be productive.

    Know your role. Think about whether in your current situation you’re acting as a teacher, a student, or a peer, and whether you should be teaching, asking questions, or debating. Knowing your specific role is especially important in times of high emotional demands, allowing you to bring people together in a shared spirit of humility and open-mindedness.

    Use your empathy. When your environment and culture are demanding, empathy is especially important. It isn’t always easy to show empathy, especially when situations are challenging or taxing. But seeing through the eyes of another and working to truly understand how they feel will help you connect on a deeper level and cultivate a more meaningful relationship.

    Learn from your mistakes. Great leaders are big enough to admit their mistakes, smart enough to profit from them and strong enough to correct them. We all make mistakes—we all have struggles and challenges and even some regrets. You are not your mistakes, and you are not your struggles. Instead of letting mistakes bring you down, use them to take full ownership of your potential.

    Connect with your purpose. Purpose is incredibly important, not just to leaders but to team members at every level. When work becomes emotionally charged it can be harder to find that purpose or understand the meaning. Doing so may require that you shift your thinking and challenge any entrenched mindsets—individually and as a group—so you can identify how your work makes an impact on others, on the community, on society, and in the world.

    Leading through emotionally demands is often difficult, but the process can help you guide yourself and your team toward new ways to give your best selves in service.

    Lead from within: As a leader, the meaning of your life is to find your gift and the purpose of your life is to share it with others, challenging or not. Too many people have the means to live, but little meaning to live for.


    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 How to Be Your Best In an Emotionally Demanding Role  appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
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