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  • feedwordpress 08:00:13 on 2020/07/09 Permalink
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    How to Know You’re About To Make A Bad Leadership Decision 


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    Do you know a successful leader who’s made bad decisions? The answer is almost certainly “yes.”

    Decision making is a big part of leadership, and strong leaders pride themselves on their judgment and decisiveness. But even the best of them have made bad decisions at some point—and some of those mistakes were preventable.

    Here are the top red flags that can warn you that you may be making a bad choice. Watch for them in your day-to-day decision making and if you see cause for concern, take some time to reconsider. No decision is without risk, but if you’re thoughtful and deliberate in your decision making, you’ll be right more often than not.

    If you don’t ask for other opinions. Many leaders make the mistake of thinking they have to make decisions on their own. But especially when you’re faced with an important decision, it’s smart to seek out the counsel of others. Talking through the issues with someone you trust can bring clarity and new insights.

    If you decide too quickly. We live in an age where everything seems to require an instant response. The need to make decisions on the fly can lead to mistakes even for the best leaders. Some situations require swift action, but whenever possible give yourself time to process and think.

    If you don’t have all the information you need. The devil is in the details, as the old saying goes, and it’s hard to make a sound decision when you don’t have access to information you need. Carry out your due diligence and do your research. You can’t remove uncertainty from decision making, but you can minimize it by making informed choices.

    If you only want to follow your gut. Many leaders pride themselves on following their gut instinct. For the best, those instincts are grounded in years of education and experience. For most of us, though, our instincts need backup. If all the evidence and facts point in one direction, and your gut disagrees, ask yourself if something else is at work—maybe denial, wishful thinking, or bias. In most situations where you’re facing a significant decision, trust your head more than your gut.

    If you’re too emotional. As a leader, your decisions may be bold, but they also need to be rational. Decisions based on emotion and carried out in the fervent heat of the moment may feel good in the short run, but they aren’t likely to bring good results. Especially if it’s an important decision, take a break and slow things down. Buy yourself some time to quiet your emotions and think things through.

    Making good decisions is not always easy, but heeding the warning signs can help keep you from making bad ones.

    Lead from within: We all make choices, and in the end our choices make us who we are as leaders.

     


    #1 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: iStockPhotos

    The post How to Know You’re About To Make A Bad Leadership Decision appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:10 on 2020/06/30 Permalink
    Tags: , , communication, , , , , , , , , , ,   

    Why Every Leader Needs to Spend Time Alone 


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    Studies have long shown that chronic loneliness and isolation are damaging to people’s mental and physical health. But a balanced amount of time spent alone has clear benefits—and depending on your temperament, it may be a necessity. It can even help strengthen your leadership. Here’s how:

    Improved social relationships. At first glance, it doesn’t make sense to improve your social relationships by being alone . But when you take the time to look inward, defining your needs and priorities, your social life will be better spent. Similarly, time alone can improve your relationships at work. And the better your relationships, the happier and more productive you’ll be—as a human and as a leader.

    Improved creativity. The best way to foster creativity is to take the time to give yourself a framework of goals, outcomes, objectives and results. If you don’t slow down to do this work you will find yourself going around in circles. And once you’ve determined a destination, getting and staying in touch with your creativity requires the kind of deep dives that are best accomplished alone.

    Improved confidence. Many leaders subscribe to the mantra fake it till you make it, but as a leadership coach I have seen this approach cause far too many implosions. Instead, lead from within by developing an understanding of who you are and what you’re good at. From there you can build on your strengths and leverage your weaknesses in authentic ways that benefit both you and those you lead. It’s a deeply rewarding process, one that will benefit you in every way, and it requires spending the kind of focused time and energy that you can find only when you’re alone.

    Improved emotional regulation. Most leaders have a thousand things coming at them all at once. Those who spend some daily time centering themselves in quiet meditation, prayer, or thought are able take it in stride. Those who never give their nerves a break from the constant overstimulation and chaos of the work day are far more likely to react badly as soon as something goes off track.

    Improved decision making. When decisions need to be made—and especially when they need to be made quickly—the best leaders take a moment to themselves. They aren’t stalling—they’re making a peaceful space to review their options, make sure they’re thinking clearly and accounting for everything. A little focused time yields clear, well-thought-out decisions.

    Many people, especially those who are extroverts by nature, may find it hard to spend time alone. But if you can develop a regular practice of closing your door to the world, you’ll give yourself time with your thoughts and a space for your mind to wander in new directions. Time alone can be restorative, building your confidence, creativity, and productivity, and helping you better engage with others.

    Lead from within: Give yourself a break and spend some more time alone so you can become the leader you are meant to be.

     


    #1 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: iStockPhotos

    The post Why Every Leader Needs to Spend Time Alone appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:43 on 2020/06/25 Permalink
    Tags: , , , communication, , , , , , , , ,   

    What is the Worst Leadership Styles and Why 


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    People who study leadership theory learn about numerous styles of leadership: autocratic, democratic, strategic, transformational—on and on. It can be interesting to debate the pros and cons of each.

    But whatever theory you subscribe to—or if you’re a self-taught leader who doesn’t believe in theories—there are some styles of leadership that are always detrimental. Here are a few of the worst:

    Know-it-all leadership. People don’t admire leaders who pretend to know everything and insist that whatever they do is right. Leaders who think they’re smarter than everyone else create isolation and quickly come to be resented by their peers and the people on their team.

    Absent leadership. Some leaders are physically absent—always away at a meeting or conference, wandering somewhere else in the building or working from home. Many more are physically present and may even pride themselves on being accessible because their office door is always open. But if they’re distracted and checked out, never really listening or pitching in, they might as well be somewhere else.

    Inflexible leadership. A leader’s behavior is the single biggest factor they bring to bear on influencing others. Agile, creative leadership has the power to energize, engage and motivate people to go the extra mile for their organization. But a leader who’s inflexible and stubborn creates demotivation, poor performance, frequent absences, and high turnover.

    Micromanaging leadership. Micromanagement has a devastating effect on even the best teams, destroying morale and productivity. Part of the problem is that most micromanagers aren’t even aware of what they’re doing. They’re often the ones saying “I don’t believe in micromanagement, but…”. Effective leadership means a commitment to focus on the big picture and on motivating employees, not standing over their shoulder.

    Self-serving leadership. Ego can undermine leadership in two ways. The first is false pride, when you focus on self-promotion and making yourself look good even at the expense of your team or peers. The second is self-doubt or fear, when you lose confidence and question yourself and your abilities. They move in different directions, but they’re equally destructive.

    Leadership by intimidation. Those who lead from fear are often terrified of looking weak, but in trying to look strong they fail themselves and their team. Instead of sharing a vision that motivates, they threaten and complain. Instead of analyzing problems and looking for solutions, they focus on placing blame. Talented team members find new options, leaving only mediocre performers who are lacking enough in confidence to allow themselves to be bullied on a daily basis.

    At the end of the day, every leader has their own preferred style. The important thing is to be aware of what style you’re putting out there and to check in periodically to make sure it’s serving your team and yourself well.

    Lead from within: It’s said that the best sign of a good leader is not how many followers they have, but how many leaders they create. If your leadership style is right, your influence will quickly spread.

     


    #1 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: iStockPhotos

    The post What is the Worst Leadership Styles and Why appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:07 on 2020/06/18 Permalink
    Tags: , , communication, , , , , , , , ,   

    How to Prepare Your People for the New Normal 


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    As a coach working with CEOs and other leaders, I help my clients learn to be ready for what the future is likely to bring—and for the possibilities that they can’t see coming. Lately I’ve been focusing on helping them prepare themselves and their people for what’s being called the new normal—life after this initial phase of the crisis is over, when we return to a workplace that in many ways won’t be the same as the one we left.

    Here are some of the most important things you need to consider as you prepare your team for the weeks and months to come:

    If the team was struggling before, now they will be challenged even more. If your team found working together to be a struggle before the pandemic, they’ll be more challenged than ever. Even for those who come back in to work, office life will be different. Anything new takes extra effort and adds extra stress, so provide plenty of clarity and patience.

    If the team was used to a set process before, now they will need to make adjustments. A wide reassessment is happening everywhere: Is what we did six months ago still relevant today? Many teams will be required to pivot or revise their projects and projections. Not only processes but also organizational priorities and needs are changing.

    If the team was only semi-engaged before, now they will have to tune in more than ever. Even in the best teams, there are disagreements and conflicts. Where before people could work things out face to face, reconciling differences is going to remain difficult. Leaders must prepare their people to tune in to one another even more and find room to agree before disengagement can even begin.

    If the team had a hard time with accountability before, now they will have to be more responsible than ever. Change and uncertainty lead to anxiety and stress—which means no one on your team is likely to be at their best and problems become magnified. People who struggled with accountability before will be more likely to blame others. Coach your team to take ownership and model accountability for them.

    If decisions always came from the top before, now teams will have to learn to make them together. If there’s a silver lining to crisis, it’s that it shakes up structure. In the past weeks many teams have seen people across functions step up and speak up with effective results—and now that they’ve found their voices, taking them away would be both difficult and wrong. Leaders and teams alike need to learn a new style of collaborative decision making.

    The best leaders are preparing their people for the new normal, because they know that if their people are prepared, the rest of the organization will be aligned.

    Lead from within: Preparation is everything. Leaders know that when you fail to prepare, you are preparing to fail.

     

     


    #1 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: iStockPhotos

    The post How to Prepare Your People for the New Normal appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
  • feedwordpress 08:00:36 on 2020/06/11 Permalink
    Tags: , , , communication, , , , , , ,   

    How The Best Leaders Manage Their Anxiety 


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    I can tell you from my experience as a leadership coach that many leaders suffer from anxiety. If we’re being honest, everyone experiences anxiety to some degree. I make sure my coaching clients have the tools they need to manage their anxiety because left unchecked, it can do great damage to their decision-making ability and overall effectiveness. Here are some of the techniques I share with them for managing anxiety:

    Acknowledge your anxiety without denying it. Anxiety never shows up without a reason. So invite it in and try to understand why it’s manifesting right now. Ignoring your feelings and pushing them away never works. Instead, acknowledge your anxiety so you can begin to address it and manage it.

    Accept your anxiety without attachment. It’s not unusual to internalize anger along with anxiety. But the best way to ease the stress is to accept it without blame. If it makes you uncomfortable, name it. Because the more you try to control your anxiety, the harder it fights back. Avoid the tug of war by learning how to detach yourself and accept your anxiety. When you do, you’ve already made progress in moving through it.

    Surf the wave without getting swallowed up by the current. It may be impossible to get rid of your anxiety. As frustrating as that can feel, part of managing anxiety is understanding that you may not be in top form until things settle down. The goal is to learn to surf the waves of distress without being overwhelmed by their power.

    Watch for patterns and label your feelings. For most of us, anxiety comes with a pattern. It may be that stress leads to fear which leads to anxiety. Or it may be that something doesn’t work out, your perfectionist tendencies lead you to anger, and anxiety follows. Look for your individual patterns so you can label and understand the events and emotions that lead up to anxiety.

    Learn your telltale signs. When you’re feeling anxious, take note of your physical reactions. They often function as an early warning system to alert you to imminent anxiety. It might be a stomach flip, tense shoulders, or an inability to focus. Once you learn to recognize your physical symptoms, you can catch anxiety before it overtakes you.

    Let go of controlling anxiety and work to manage it. Victor Frankl famously said, “Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” Instead of working to control the situation, choose your response. Make a conscious decision to manage your anxiety by breathing, shifting your attention, and taking small purposeful actions.

    Many leaders emphasize their strength, competence, and credentials in the workplace. Wouldn’t it be great if more of them opened up about how they learned to manage anxiety?

    Lead from within: Anxiety makes leadership interesting, but managing anxiety makes leadership meaningful—for you and for those you lead.

     

     


    #1 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: iStockPhotos

    The post How The Best Leaders Manage Their Anxiety appeared first on Lolly Daskal.

     
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