Building Team ‘Awesome’ – Where Are Your Strengths?

Focusing on building the right team to get the job done often makes us forget one thing … ‘change’ happens!

Focusing on building an ‘awesome’ team to deliver solutions to solve problems embraces the most important thing to remember … ‘change’ happens!

team

Introducing Team ‘Awesome’

  • Team ‘awesome’ is agile enough to be able to be responsive and proactive to change.
  • Team ‘awesome’ is able to recognise and resolve problems by making smart and informed decisions.
  • Team ‘awesome’ delivers relevant and real solutions for customers rather than delivering products and services to customers

How to Start to Build Team ‘Awesome’

Focusing on the behaviours you see, and the problems they present, instead of focusing on what strengths team members may have that are unseen, underutilized or untapped is where the secret to building and ‘awesome’ team lies.

Do you recognize any of these behaviours in your team?

The Procrastinator

Do you have team members who are indecisive and never seem to finish what they start?

  • Are these team members lacking confidence in the tasks they are expected to complete? If so, ask them why they feel this way and how you can help them to believe in themselves, particularly if the expectations in their role have changed.
  • Are these team members expected to complete tasks that they are under-skilled for?  Have you assessed your employee’s capacity and capability before having an expectation of them? If not, they may procrastinate to avoid being seen as incompetent.
  • Are these team members lost in the detail and cannot concentrate long enough to tick all the boxes to get the job done?  Find out if this person needs lots of information to commit or decide, and if so, how can you support this need?
  • Have you spent enough time explaining what you expect from these team members and the timeline you want them to complete tasks within?

The Antagonist

Do you have team members who create havoc and are sometimes a thorn in the side of other members of your team?

  • When this team member behaves this way are they aware of the impact on other team members?  Determine if this is a subconscious behaviour or one that is deliberate, and if so why?
  • Have these team members always behaved this way or has something changed that made their behaviour change, and if so why?
  • Are your antagonist team members bored and creating situations where they are the hero to challenge themselves?  How can you challenge them to refocus their attention?
  • What is the reward that these team members get by behaving this way?  How else can you reward them for other behaviours that are more appropriate, and in ways that will deliver higher productivity and is conducive to a healthy work culture?
  • Are other team members encouraging these behaviours by submitting or even enabling these team members?  Is being seen as having influence and authority the driver for these team members?

The People Pleaser

Nothing is too hard for these team members.  Give them any task and they will do their absolute best to see it through.

  • Are the team members that you identify as people pleasers capable of the tasks they attempt? How can you make these people feel that their contribution is valued while ensuring they are performing the tasks fit with their skill set and experience?
  • What are these team members looking for in your workplace?  Approval, a sense of belonging, popularity, or other drivers compel people pleasers to behave the way they do.  Identifying what the motivation is for the individual is key to ensuring that the potential of that employee is not lost in the effort and whether their behaviour may be more for personal gain than business productivity.
  • People pleasers often behave the way they do through fear and insecurity in the possibility of losing their role. By pleasing others they may feel that they will be liked and needed by the business, protecting them from their role being compromised.
  • If you channelled the energy that people pleasers spend on pleasing, into tasks that enable them to work to their strengths and give them a sense an opportunity to build a reputation on what they accomplish rather than what they do and say, what difference would that make to your business?

The ‘Accidental’ Leader

Have you got team members who have become accidental leaders? The role they are engaged in is not a leadership role but due to the team dynamics, they have had to stand up and take the lead, or maybe they were appointed into a leadership role but it is not their strength?

  • How can you identify who you natural leaders are, and when you do, how can you create an environment where they can lead, creating a more efficient and effective workplace?
  • Role misalignment can see accidental leaders thrust into an environment with an expectation that they are not engaged to perform.  How do you recognize natural leaders and appointed leaders who are misaligned?  When you do, how do you approach the dynamic of the workplace to take advantage of these leaders skills? Consider that working with these leaders strengths may alter or enhance culture with increased productivity and profitability.

The Quiet Achiever

The quiet achiever comes in, puts their head down and gets on with the task at hand.  Often this silent force pushes through workloads that others avoid, without complaint.

  • Is your visibility of the quiet achiever low?  Are you aware of what they have to offer, and if you are not what is your business missing out on?
  • Are your quiet achievers working to their capacity or just pushing through a workload?  Think about how you can start to introduce incentivization for these people to encourage them to challenge themselves and how you will do this.
  • Do your quiet achievers pick up the slack for other team members who may be taking advantage of their goodwill?  If you change how you measure the performance of your team and focus on their strengths to introduce key performance indicators, will this identify gaps in performance and open up opportunities?

The Whinger

Have you got team members who are never satisfied, never happy and always complaining no matter what you do for them?

  • People often whinge because whining about something is often easier than working to fix problems.  You need to discover why this behaviour keeps occurring to be able to establish a new purpose for these employees and to give them a reason why they would want to change their behaviour.
  • Is there a real reason for the whining that is being caused by the work environment that can be addressed rather than being dismissed?
  • Are their triggers that set off the whining, and if so what are that triggers, and what chain of reactions do these triggers put into motion?  Often taking the time to understand why people believe they need to behave a certain way is a great investment in discovering what motivates and what demotivates individuals and your team.

The Clock Watcher

The clock watcher’s timesheets are regimented and this is reflected in when they arrive at work and when they leave on time every day.  The clock watchers in your team may also be the ones who come in on time and then proceed to make their breakfast or socialize, procrastinating before they start work.

  • Why is your clock watcher disengaged? If they are bored and unhappy is it because their role does not challenge them, or are they only there to collect the weekly pay?
  • Clock watching is not only negative for the business but also impacts on the employee and the team collectively, with productivity suffering and everyone is affected. How can you help these employees to re-engage and take ownership of what they contribute?
  • Enriching the clock watchers job and time managing the activities may shine a light on their strengths and weaknesses, helping you support these employees and improve and enable their level of job satisfaction and value of the contribution they make to the business.

The ‘Big Picture’ Person

When it comes to getting things done it may be a challenge for the ‘big picture’ employee. They can see what needs to happen and inspire others to help them understand how this will happen but they may struggle to focus on making it happen.

  • The big picture person is important to encourage the team to work to achieve long-term goals and projects incrementally.  If you have a balance on your team with members who enjoy detail and process, these people will align well with the big picture person.  Who is on your team and is the mix right?
  • How can you embrace the vision of the big picture person to know where the business direction is going at an operational level? If you do this how will this make the employee feel, and what difference will that make to their level of engagement?
  • Often the big picture person is seen as a dreamer and not a doer. Finding the right vehicles for the big picture person to dream and deliver may help your business continue to gain momentum.  Is this important to help your business remain relevant and provide more insight for other employees?

The Manipulator

The manipulator is often the employee who feels that they have to position other team members by any means to make them look good.  This can be harmless or they can be very destructive.

  • If you have identified a manipulator the default is often to discipline them or spend time putting out fires they have started.  What if you looked at how they are manipulating to identify what they are trying to achieve by doing this?
  • If the manipulator is trying to make themselves look like a hero, how can you give them ownership of a task or project or offer them professional learning to teach them how to do this without creating collateral damage.
  • Often the manipulator’s behaviour is a cry for help.  They are feeling insecure or incompetent and this makes them fearful of their longevity and value to the business.  They often do not understand that they are being destructive or causing the behaviour that they do and may be horrified to think that this is what they are known for.  Showing the manipulator how to demonstrate value, how that is measured and rewarded is a learning process that can realign what once was a challenging employee into a champion employee.

The Follower

The follower just wants to be told what to do, how to do it and get on with doing it.

A follower can become stuck in a rut with little thought or attention to detail when they go through the motions to get the job done.  What if you changed some of the tasks or the ways they were to be done and supported this with training and guidance?

  • Often followers are motivated by basic safety needs and not by incentives and rewards.  Reframing their roles to expand what they do may challenge this. If you leverage the strengths and apply them to new job duties they may respond positively because they see themselves as team players. This will only work if they believe you are not trying to take them away from where they know they are capable. This process, if successful, reinforces their roles rather than changes them in their eyes.
  • How often do you see too many followers and inadequate leadership in teams?  When this happens you have a ‘pack mentality’ that is not conducive to productivity or profitability. If you identify the strengths of all your team members could this help you to change this dynamic?
  • Followers need guidelines or they operate by habit.  Is your business structured to facilitate this or do your team members just operate as they see best?

The Bully

These team members are your human resource nightmare.  This type of employee has the potential to create staff complaint or churn.

  • The typical reaction to a bully is negative and often this may just reinforce the bully to keep doing what they are doing. Likewise, calling them on that behaviour could also create a challenge.  Find out why this behaviour is happening in a non-confrontational way and you might find what pieces are missing that is causing this so you can remediate.
  • A bully often behaves this way because they feel inadequate and they are trying to compensate for what they are lacking.  Find out what is lacking and you may be on the way to defusing that behaviour,
  • Bullies often push to get their own way to validate how they think and how they behave.  Creating a collaborative work environment that is KPI’d on both individual and group efforts may help the bully to conform to achieve outcomes or be seen as the problem if they don’t.

The Innovator

Every team needs innovators to shift thinking from delivering services and products to delivering solutions.

  • Innovators are only an asset to a team when they are given the space and opportunity to discover and innovate.  How will you support this?
  • Innovators need to be measured to ensure that they focus on what the business needs to achieve.  How will you measure your innovators’ input and contribution to solutions and team performance?
  • Innovation can detract from the core business.  How can you structure your team aims and objectives to keep that focus while embracing innovation to remain relevant and competitive?

The Attention Seeker

Everyone likes attention but some employees seek it more than others.  These people can consume time and resource if left unchecked.

  • Why is your attention seekers attention seeking?  Are they looking for acknowledgement or recognition, and if so, why?
  • When you identify what the attention seeker’s motivation is you are able to understand what they need to perform effectively without feeling the need to find reassurance and reinforcement.
  • Rewarding autonomy and initiative may assist to reaffirm worth and value for the attention seeker.  This may work so long as that recognition is visible, and positions them as important in the team environment.

The Social Butterfly

Some employees see the workplace as a social environment.  Although it is good to create healthy relationships in the workplace balance is key.

  • What does the social butterfly want from the workplace?  Are they lonely, have low self-esteem or see their workmates as their friends first and foremost?  Workplaces can satisfy the need to belong, but it is important to nurture a culture where an employee feels they belong and are accepted, but are focussed on delivering what the business needs.  How will you elevate the social butterfly from someone who is perceived as someone who spends too much time around the water cooler, to one who is recognized as a productive and valued team member?
  • Harness the social butterflies talents!  Maybe they can run the social club or coordinate events?
  • Tightening the parameters around time management with performance measurement is another option, shining the light on what is really getting done.

The Reclusive

When an employee feels confronted or intimidated they may become reclusive and go within themselves.

Finding out why your team member is reclusive is the first step to understanding how to change that circumstance.

Being reclusive does not have to mean being unproductive, however, you need to be able to have transparency as to what these team members are actually doing.  If this assessment shows a strong work ethic it may not indicate any overarching challenges that exist but may indicate a person who prefers to work this way.

Respecting the reclusive team member is important, regardless of why they are reclusive, as this suggests that this is their natural default behaviour or by circumstance, they behave this way.  Tread carefully to encourage these team members to have a voice and you may learn a lot from what they have to say.

The Imposter

These team members often get promoted or secure a role without really having the qualifications or experience to perform in that role.

  • Imposters spend their time trying not to get found out.  Symptoms of this are poor performance, delegation and micromanagement.  Treating those symptoms may mean professional learning and mentoring or realignment of their roles. Be careful not to treat only the symptoms.  Focus on true change management.
  • The longer an imposter goes unchecked the more they are likely to impact the productivity of the team performance.  Regular team health checks are important.
  • An imposter will have more impact the higher their level of responsibility.  When you look at your team do you see an imposter impeding decision making and actions?  If so, how will you address this?

Team ‘awesome’ is a work in progress!

Profiling your people and making them feel supported as you go through this process will build trust and confidence and allay fears.

This is not about changing the job description but rather changing the job design. Emphasise and measure the strength and offset the impact of weaknesses by enabling other team members who demonstrate that those weaknesses are their strengths to align the team dynamic to compliment.

 

Stand out and learn how to lead from the front!

To stand out from the crowd as a leader is not difficult if you understand how to develop your emotional intelligence.  Your IQ alone is not what will make you a superstar. High emotional intelligence as well as embracing your authenticity will set you apart from other leaders.

“Emotional aptitude is a “meta-ability”, determining how well we can use whatever other skills we have , including raw intellect .”

Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than

What makes you stand out from the crowd

Leaders who stand out from the crowd:

• are approachable and are open at all times to input, ideas and suggestions.
• leave their ego at the front door and lead by example.
• better understand who they are as leaders and how to work with their team to get results that are both desirable and sustainable.
recognize their own and their team’s strengths and weaknesses and use these to nurture a healthy team environment and develop a resilient company culture.
• have the insight and ability to collaborate, align and manage resourceand deliver outcomes for all stakeholders.

“Empathy is the experience of understanding another person’s condition from their perspective. You place yourself in their shoes and  feel what they are feeling.”

Psychology Today

There are 5 questions you need to ask yourself to improve your Emotional Intelligence to start your journey. This will help you to learn how to develop and nurture your Emotional Intelligence and to recognize and reach your potential.

  • Are you paying attention…to yourself?
  • Do you keep your emotions in check?
  • Are you able to walk in other people’s shoes?
  • Where is your focus: Short term or long term goals?
  • Are you a social magnet?

“A high degree of self regulation is one of the vital parts of EQ.”

says Dr Carolyn MacCann PhD, Psychology lecturer at The Univerity of Sydney.

Take this FREE EQ test to help you discover more about your emotional intelligence. This test is not an accurate scoring of you emotional intelligence but maybe used as a tool to use as part of your journey of self-development.

The growth of your emotional intelligence is an ongoing process and an evolution of you as both a leader and a person.

Originally posted 2016-01-08 12:09:36.

Become an emotionally intelligent leader in 5 steps

So your IQ doesn’t indicate you are a genius……..don’t worry!  If you are emotionally intelligent that can help make you a superstar!

become emotionally intelligent in 5 steps

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It turns out your emotional intelligence is what can really set you apart from your peers. If you want to be successful you have to be prepared to embrace change and how you go about getting there.

“Emotional aptitude is a “meta-ability”, determining how well we can use whatever other skills we have , including raw intellect .”

Daniel Goleman, Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ

The 5 steps to improve your Emotional Intelligence is a starting point. This will help you to learn how to develop and nurture your Emotional Intelligence and to recognize and reach your potential.

1. Are you paying attention…to yourself?

If you are pretending to be someone you are not to be accepted, to fit in, or to get ahead you will always fail. Sometimes it is a challenge to be authentic when you aren’t confident in who you are.
Being self-aware should be a priority. Keeping yourself ‘in the moment’ is always a good grounding exercise. If you choose to be confident, how people see you will also change.

Your ‘me’ checklist:

  • Do you love who you are warts and all?
  • Have you ever been caught out pretending to be someone you are not?
  • Do you consciously communicate honestly and openly at all times?
  • Are you willing to change your default behaviour from what you think others want to see to being your authentic self. (this will take some discipline)
  • Are you able to give yourself a break or does your inner voice challenge you? Always forgive yourself and remember that you are a ‘work in progress’.
    If you answered ‘no’ or even a ‘sometimes’ to any of these checklist points you are not paying enough attention to being the best person you can possibly be.

2. Do you keep your emotions in check?

Letting your emotions play a part in your decision making is dangerous and exhausting.

“A high degree of self regulation is one of the vital parts of EQ.”

says Dr Carolyn MacCann PhD, Psychology lecturer at The Univerity of Sydney.

Managing your emotions will empower you to have better outcomes as you will avoid losing perspective and surrendering to what you can’t control by making impulsive decisions to fix a problem.

You will always face situations you can’t control. What you do have control over is how you respond. A considered response is always a responsible one. How you invest your time and energy is vital to your productivity ….and your sanity.

3. Are you able to walk in other people’s shoes?

One of the most challenging things you need to master is to be able to ‘walk in the other person’s shoes’. Empathy is what makes an ordinary manager an extraordinary leader. Recognizing other people’s moods and emotions though their body language, facial expressions and behaviour gives you an EQ tool kit that will enable you to develop positive and strong relationships both at work and at home.

“Empathy is the experience of understanding another person’s condition from their perspective. You place yourself in their shoes and feel what they are feeling.”

Psychology Today

4. Where is your focus: Short term or long term goals?

An emotionally intelligent leader has the discipline and focus to set and work toward achieving long term goals. Short term goals are usually stepping stones for emotionally intelligent leaders with snack size tasks that rewards themselves and their teams to consistently create a culture that supports a high morale and motivation environment.

Emotionally intelligent leaders are:

• Leaders who are approachable and open at all times to input, ideas and suggestions
• Leaders who leave their ego at the front door and teach others to follow so the same
• Leaders who better understand who they are as leaders and how to work with their team to get results that are both desirable and sustainable
• Leaders who recognize their own and their team’s strengths and weaknesses and use this to nurture a healthy team environment and resilient company culture
• Leaders who have the insight and ability to collaborate, align and manage resources to deliver outcomes for all stakeholders.

5. Are you a social magnet?

To be a social magnet you need to be socially in tune with others. So what does ‘being emotionally intelligent’ look like socially?

Feelings – Change the way you speak to people. Be aware of how they are behaving, identify how they are feeling and frame your conversation to create a safe and friendly social settings where they feel relaxed and open.

Empathy – Recognizing how people are feeling and understanding why they are feeling that way and then responding appropriately will create a non-threatening and trust environment.

Engage – People will be more open with you when you appear to understand them and aren’t dismissive of what they see as important. Put their needs first!

Listen and learn – Discover what people perceive and what they see as real and how that impacts their behaviour and performance. This is helpful to learn how to support and work with that person to empower them to reach their potential.

Share – Respect is earnt by sharing ‘your’ experiences: both failures and successes. This shows you are human and you understand where the other person is coming from, what they need to do to help them grow and overcome the barriers that are holding them back.

Take this FREE EQ test to help you discover more about emotional intelligence. This test is not an accurate scoring of you emotional intelligence but a tool to use as part of your journey of self-development.

Originally posted 2016-01-08 10:35:45.

Data discovery: Questions & Answers

Data is a powerful resource to help you capture diverse information for analysis. This resource can be applied to create or enhance outcomes for existing and new brand initiatives and innovations.

data dynamite ready to ignite

 

Below are some basic questions you need to ask yourself to help you determine how, why, where, when and who you need to capture information with and from. I encourage you to add your own questions. Engage with your teams, encourage innovation and initiative. This will ensure that you get a comprehensive insight into how you approach the next steps. This will help you re-define your business strategy.

What do you want your data to help you with?

  1. Monitoring your competitors
  2. Identifying business pain points
  3. Identifying business strengths
  4. Helping with information management
  5. Improving security
  6. Targeting sales and marketing
  7. Diminishing the value of legacy systems
  8. Improving data capture quality
  9. Improving customer conversion
  10. Validation of ROI metrics
  11. Create workplace efficiency
  12. Reduce overheads
  13. PLUS your team’s brainstorming ideas of what else your business needs to understand to grow and prosper.

Want to learn more?

Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die by Eric Siegel

Competing on Analytics by Thomas H Devonport

You now have more information available about your business environment than ever before. Are you using it to “out-think” your rivals? If not, you may be missing out on a potent competitive tool.

In Competing on Analytics: The New Science of Winning, Thomas H. Davenport and Jeanne G. Harris argue that the frontier for using data to make decisions has shifted dramatically. Certain high-performing enterprises are now building their competitive strategies around data-driven insights that in turn generate impressive business results. Their secret weapon? Analytics that deliver sophisticated quantitative and statistical analysis as well as predictive modeling.

Marketing Analytics: Strategic Models and Metrics by Stephan Sorger

Marketing Analytics: Strategic Models and Metrics offers marketing students and professionals a practical guide to strategic decision models and marketing metrics. The tools described in the book will aid marketers in making intelligent decisions to drive revenue and results in their organizations.

Originally posted 2016-01-06 14:18:05.

23 Ways You Could Be Damaging Your Reputation Without Even Knowing It!

How often have you wondered why people behave in different ways when they meet with you, haven’t seen you in a while, or you both know the same person? Often it is your reputation that precedes you.

reputation

23 Ways You Could Be Damaging Your Reputation

1. Dismissing people

  • Do you find that you are always busy and often people become just another source of ‘noise’?
  • Is it easier to prioritize the people that will have an immediate impact on what you, and dismiss others?
  • Are you guilty of reacting to people who become your ‘squeaky wheel’ and ignoring others?

You need to ask yourself what message this is conveying.

2. Giving people ‘lip service’

Are you telling people what you think they want to hear, rather than what they need to hear?

Often we are guilty of doing this, however, this is often because it is an easier way of keeping the momentum going and not getting bogged down in discussions that we may see as unnecessary, or that we feel we do not have enough time for.  

You need to ask yourself if your message is speaking the language your audience understands or are you speaking to them in a language that they need to have interpreted?  

If this is the case your reputation may suggest to people that you are out of touch. 

3. Talking trash

 Have you ever caught yourself listening to what you are saying to others as you are speaking, and said to yourself  …Wow!, that sounded great?

You need to ask yourself that if you felt it sounded great are you framing what you are saying to make yourself look good or are you communicating in a way that will make your audience look or feel good?  

This will leave a lasting impression as to whether your audience feels you are credible.

4. Believing your opinion matters more than others

You know your stuff right!  It is an expectation that you express your educated opinion because that is what you are employed to do isn’t it?

This is a dangerous assumption because you are more than likely to come across as expecting others to conform to the way you think, giving them the impression that their opinions are less important than yours, or worse still that you feel they are irrelevant.

You need to ask yourself what perception you are projecting and how people are interacting with you.  This will give you a good indicator of what your reputation is with the people you interact and engage with.

5. Needing to be right

We all like to think we are right, but the truth is, that more often than not, we may be trying to solve problems with solutions that are ’cause and effect’ only.

This may stem the flow of the problem initially but you will only be treating the symptom and not the disease.

Being ready, willing and able to contemplate, consider and collaborate. This is when your reputation will open doors for you.

You need to ask yourself honestly, does your need to be right means you are sabotaging you and your team’s success? 

6. Making yourself look good

This is often a fear driven behavior.  If we do not look good then people may not believe that we are doing a good job, are capable of being promoted, or of being of significant value to the business or others.

You need to ask yourself are you trying to promote yourself at the expense of others?

Are you excluding others because you feel that if you include them it will take the gloss off you?  

This can be a self-fulfilling prophecy. Ultimately your ‘gloss’ will become tarnished because you cannot be everything to everyone. All you are doing if you are behaving this way is providing an opportunity to showcase your weaknesses.

7. Promising but not delivering

Words are cheap.

Actions speak louder than words.

We have all heard these phrases, but often we don’t pay them enough attention to them and this can be to our detriment.

You need to ask yourself when you suggest, direct or intimate something in conversation do you follow through even if the outcome is not favorable for the person you have spoken to?

 If you don’t, what is the impression you are giving to that person and how do you know that person will not become pivotal in your future direction?

The truth is you don’t know, but you can be assured that they will remember the way you treated them.

8. Not surrounding yourself with people who are smarter than you

Have you ever been guilty of not employing someone because you felt that they might show you up?

Do you ever have that niggling feeling that you might be caught out as an ‘imposter’ in an area that you do not believe you perform as well as you should?

You need to ask yourself if you are missing an opportunity to showcase your leadership skills and team performances all because of lack of confidence in your own individual abilities?

9. Believing that there is an ‘i’ in team

We all joke about this statement because we have all heard it said at training sessions and in motivational speaking forums.

The  ‘i’ is really an ‘e’ and that ‘e’ stands for ego.

You need to ask yourself if you are putting you first when you lead, or the team first and if you are jeopardizing your reputation?

 

Your team will follow if you lead from the front, but will leave you, if you push them from behind.

10. Pretending you know what you are doing when you really don’t

Faking it till you make it may work in some cases but in the long run you will always get caught out and this usually happens when you least expect it.

You need to ask yourself if you are always waiting for that ball to drop, how many others are able to see your vulnerability, exploit you, or pass judgment?

11. Not asking for help when you really should

Flying solo may look attractive but everyone has weaknesses and things that they are not really good at.

You need to ask yourself what will happen when those holes in your armor appear and your team realizes you are only human.  

What message you are sending to the people who are following you? 

12. Fear of failure means you avoid trying new things

Being change-averse and risk-averse means you are stuck.

Being stuck means that others will pass you by and overtake you.

You need to ask yourself if you can afford to be left behind and seen as someone who was not forward thinking. Do you want this to be your legacy?

13. Always doing things the same way as you always have

Habit is a comfortable word.

It is so much easier to repeat the same processes than to learn something new, and often this is why we default to this, often subconsciously.

You need to ask yourself if you are guilty of complacency and recognize that people could see this as your ‘Achilles Heel’ and take advantage.

14. Worried about what others think when you determine how you act

As humans, we are very vulnerable to how we are perceived.

For some of us, this controls our behavior and can, when escalated, paralyze us to act according to what others deem as appropriate and not trust our own instincts and experience.

You need to ask yourself are you allowing your actions to be determined by others, or are you taking responsibility and setting an example.

Do you have a reputation as a leader or one who is being led?

15. Overanalyzing everything

Thinking too much can cause you to overthink and over analyze.

This can lead to doubt and indecision.

You need to ask yourself how you approach your decision making?  

Are you reticent to make any decision and procrastinate because you can’t? 

What impact does this have on your performance and reputation?

16. Communicating what you say will happen, and when it will happen, and then not delivering on that

This is often seen described as time management.

Don’t focus on where you aren’t going to proceed or get outcomes.

However, this approach often means that you, in good faith, promise to come back to someone, follow up, confirm a quote or offer or give them an update within a time frame with some sense of surety and optimism that this will happen.

You need to ask yourself when circumstance and timelines change are you guilty of blowing people off, forgetting to get back to them, dropping them down the priority order or just ignoring them because getting back to them is no longer as important?  

If so what if you need or want something from that person in the future and that is not something you can foresee.  

Will they be there for you?

17. Making decisions on what others say you should do

Following the crowd or winning the popular vote may make you a hero in the short term but when the consequences of decisions that are made, motivated by others opinions, inevitably, you could be the one with egg on your face.

You need to ask yourself are you band-aiding a problem with a solution that you didn’t give consensus on?

18. Making yourself a minority in your mind:  Creating the Victims Syndrome

Society likes to create minority groups, even where they weren’t in existence before.

Why then do we move into the shadow and allow ourselves to be a minority?

You need to ask yourself…

Are you a leader with conviction or a leader without a voice?

You need to be prepared to stand up for your team, be responsible and accountable, to gain their respect and the respect of your peers.

19. Looking at the problem, not the solution

This is more common than most of us want to acknowledge.

It feels so normal to complain about the problem, how it is impacting us and if you give your team a chance they will run with this approach every time.

You need to ask yourself if you are determined to draw a line in the sand.

Expect that your team comes to you with a solution for the problem and never comes to you with the problem for you to solve. 

The solution they offer does not have to be the right one, but it will start them thinking the right way. In time, more often than not, they will be on the right track and be thinking more laterally, than literally.

20. Assuming that the problem cannot ever be part of the solution

Believing that the problem is part of the solution almost sounds like a contradiction for most people, and often it is hard to understand and process.

You need to ask yourself how you can illustrate to your team, and peers, that the problem is a symptom.

To determine the solution, the symptom or symptoms of the problem,  if reverse engineered, could provide valuable insights into the solution or solutions.

The ‘problem’ needs to stop being the barrier between you and the ‘solution’.

21. Doing what you think other people think you should do

Guesswork is about as accurate as being blindfolded and asked to perform a task that requires sight to be successful.  It is not going to end well.

You need to ask yourself if you are prepared to risk your reputation by assuming what you think others think you should do, or be bold enough to find out what should be done and show initiative.  

Travelling with the herd may feel safer but when predators move in you are likely to be trapped.

22. Not investing in yourself as a unique value proposition

Do you pay enough attention to yourself?

If you value what you bring to the table you need to invest in yourself to get the best returns.

Makes sense doesn’t it?

You would do that with any depreciating asset, wouldn’t you?

You need to ask yourself what your strategy is for continual improvement to be at the top of your game or your reputation in your chosen field may suffer.

23. Not believing you can because it is easier to give up

We all get tired living in the human rat race, competing to stay on top of the pack, and to remain relevant.

Sometimes it just seems easier to concede, rather than compete.

You need to ask yourself what the impact will be on your reputation if you choose the easy way out each time.  

You might cruise along for awhile but sure enough, you will hit the rocks if you continue without a rudder to guide you in your strategic decision making.

Your business card is your boarding pass but your reputation is your passport.  If you want to reach the right destinations you need to make sure your journey doesn’t hit turbulence.

 

 

Originally posted 2017-09-07 15:48:57.

Transform Your Business With Data Solutions

How does data transform business?

The ‘d’ stands for determining behaviours and trends that will help transform your business.

The ‘a’ stands for answering questions with clarity that will give you the confidence to transform your business.

The ‘t’ stands for how you will transform your business direction.

The ‘a’ stands for actualizing outcomes as you transform your business.

Transform your business

It is hard to know where to start with data.  It can be a bit daunting for those just starting out.

Below is a 4 part Data for Dummies series by Marc Compeau. This will give you an idea of what your business needs to get started.  Real time data demands your attention. You need to be responsive to the story it is telling you.  Have a look at the data for dummies series to continue to learn more about data capture, analysis and interpretation.

Start with …

A 4 part Data for Dummies Series by Marc Compeau (www.forbes.com)

What does your small business need? Data for Dummies

How will your small business collect data?  Data for Dummies

Small business data analysis strategies  Data for Dummies

Making big data small  Data for Dummies

Read more – 

Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die by Eric Siegel

Explaining Big Data  Explaining Computers

Big Data is the next big thing in computing. This video explains Big Data characteristics, technologies and opportunities.

Kenneth Cukier: Big data is better data 

Self-driving cars were just the start. What’s the future of big data-driven technology and design? In a thrilling science talk, Kenneth Cukier looks at what’s next for machine learning — and human knowledge.

Data is a powerful tool in business transformation that can be harnessed to create customer-centric solutions.  Determine your customer vision for your business, build your strategy with a digital and customer mindset and focus and you will stay one step ahead of the competition.

 

Originally posted 2016-01-04 16:47:43.

Set yourself up for success – Put data in the driver seat!

Data is a 4 letter word that spells ‘success’

In business you need to set yourself up for success because this just won’t happen on its own.  Data is a powerful strategy tool that guides, enlightens and empowers your business to position it for success. Data is indicative and also prescriptive. This allows you to project and measure performance and informs decision making.

personal development success

There may be only 4 letters in the word ‘data’ but the size of the word does not by any means reflect the impact it can have on your business when it is used effectively.

What does data do?

  • Determines behaviours and also impacts trends.
  • Answers questions with clarity and therefore leaves less doubt and ambuguity.
  • Transforms business direction in addition to informing a business ‘current state’.
  • Most noteworthy data actualizes outcomes.

What are some of the benefits data brings to business?

  • It empowers business to stay ahead  of their competitors.
  • It gives clear direction for strategy planning and will therefore set the agenda for the short and long term business goals.
  • Data enables business to set benchmarks which is especially relevant to justify decision making.
  • Business projections and reporting are supported because data enable smart decisions and communications.

Want to learn more to get started…

A 4 part Data for Dummies Series by Marc Compeau (www.forbes.com)

1  What does your small business need – Data for Dummies

2  How will your small business collect data – Data for Dummies

3  Small business data analysis strategies – Data for Dummies

4  Making big data small – Data for Dummies

‘Big data’ therefore, is big business because of its impact on everything we do – 

Big Data: A Revolution That Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think by Viktor Mayer-Schönberger

A revelatory exploration of the hottest trend in technology and the dramatic impact it will have on the economy, science, and society at large.

Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die by Eric Siegel

Transform data into action –  Microsoft for business

With the proliferation of data in today’s connected world, you need a way to put data to work for your business. The Microsoft Cloud helps you unlock key insights to fuel innovation and speed-to-market.

Furthermore, the data you capture, analyse and make decisions from can make or break your business.  How, where, why and when you capture data either enhances your capabilities or detracts from them. Of most importance is the quality of the data you capture. The old saying rubbish in, rubbish out is probably the best analogy to describe the outcome of bad data.

 

Originally posted 2016-01-04 16:14:00.

Networking skills: How strong are yours?

Networking is a skill in itself. How strong is your networking skills? Can you improve them to make the most of your network. Collaborate, endorse, partner and refer to nurture and grow your network to your advantage!

Networking to achieve

Your networking checklist

Choose one of the 4 choices for each question:

1/Do you share your contact details using your business card when you meet someone?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

2/ Do you connect using Linkedin or similar business networking social platforms

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

3/ Do you share your contact details by sending your contact via SMS

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

4/ Do you always arrive on time for networking meetings?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

5/ Do you measure the success of the networking meeting based on whether you make a sale or a referral?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

6/ Do you spend time reaching out to your network?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

7/ Do you attend networking events?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

8/ How often do you communicate with your network?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

9/ Do you put time aside to grow your network?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

10/ Do you value add to your network proactively?

very rarely    rarely    sometimes     always

Your answers:

If most of your answers were ‘sometimes’ or ‘always’, you are well on your way to making the most of your network and positioning yourself to grow your network proactively.  If, on the other hand, you chose more ‘rarely’ or ‘very rarely‘ choices you should be able to see where you can improve your networking performance.

Interested to learn more about networking?

How To Connect With Anyone by SoulPancake

Studies say that 4 minutes of uninterrupted eye contact can increase intimacy. To test this this theory out, we brought in six pairs in different stages of their relationship and had them try it. How do you stay connected?

How to Magically Connect with Anyone by Brian Miller

Magicians have mastered the art of understanding different perspectives in order to create illusions and connect with the audience. Brian Miller explains how he used that skill to create magic for a blind man. Then he shares how you can use the same technique to make better, more meaningful connections with people in your life, personally and professionally.

LinkedIn

The LinkedIn app makes it easier to connect to the people and things that matter in your professional world. Use LinkedIn to build and nurture your professional network, stay up to date with the latest business and industry news, and find your next dream job.

Twitter

Find the best of Twitter in an instant with Moments. Follow top stories through immersive pics, clips, and conversations. Get insights and perspectives you won’t find anywhere else.
Twitter is a free app that lets you connect with people, express yourself, and discover more about all the things you love.

Originally posted 2016-01-04 11:25:22.

Convert a Coffee Connection into a Sale

Meetings can be time consuming. To make sure that you make the most of each and every meeting you should have a plan to convert a prospective customer that you are meeting with to a sale or a referral.  Every meeting presents a new opportunity.

Convert sales over coffee

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Connect and convert over a coffee meeting

1. Understand their problem

Ask the person you are meeting with to describe what the challenges they face in their business are. You need to understand the problem before you can present a solution.

2. Determine their problem

Determine if the person you are meeting with is cash strapped before proposing a solution. This may pose a barrier to the solution you were going to propose. It may be wiser to offer a free trial with a commitment to a contract once you have demonstrated that your solution will work for their business.

3. Create a mindshift

Ask the person you are meeting how their business is travelling. If you get a negative response find out if the reasons are a reflection of the market, If they are not then seize this as an opportunity. Examine how you can create a mind shift by strengthening their belief that if they adopt your solution it will make a real difference to their business. If you get a negative response and the reasons are market indicative then look for practical solutions that will positively impact their business.  These solutions need to be realistic and measurable to reassure them that they can make headway and monitor progress. The value proposition needs to be clear or change will not be supported.

4. Invite them to initiate a solution

Let the person you are meeting with initiate a solution that their business delivers could offer to solve a problem for your business. Once you have done this then reciprocate with a mutual resolution that benefits and grows both businesses. Partnering, even if it is unofficial, builds relationships and commitment. This means you convert your sale and your customer also benefits.

5. Encourage and give referrals

Referrals strengthen sales. You could suggest to the person you are meeting with that you deliver a solution at a discounted price. If their business is happy with the outcome that you have delivered then suggest that they may offer to be a case study or give your business a testimonial. If you show that you are open to do the same for their business this will create a reciprocal relationship that benefits you both.

Want to learn more about networking and connecting?

Social Networking: From Rookie to expert in one week by Tina Bettison

For anyone who wants to understand social networks and how to use them effectively for work and career!

It’s a small world and with the advent of online networks it’s getting smaller. Now we can talk to just about anyone, anywhere, anytime. Who you know has always been as important as what you know, and social or business networks (ie, groups of people connecting together with a common interest) have existed since time began. Your connections are instrumental in everything from business deals or career progression to finding the best restaurant or beach to visit on holiday.

PROsimity: Business Networking by GeoNet Corp

Discover the best networking opportunities while at a conference, trade show, or professional event. We show you the business professionals in close proximity to you, and sort them based on what you’re looking for and what they have to offer.

Networking Basics: 8 Tips to Networking Without Being Fake  by Marie Forleo

Networking basics are important for any entrepreneur to know. If you’ve ever felt like networking is boring and dull, you’ll love this video because you’ll learn some simple strategies for making authentic connections outside of boring hotel conference rooms.

Rather than thinking of networking as an “event”, consider it an ongoing, lifelong process of building new relationships with people you actually like and want to be connected to.

To convert a connection to a sale is a skill and if you practice what to do and what not to do you will see your success rate soar.  Good luck!

Originally posted 2016-01-04 10:03:15.

You, me and coffee …anything is possible

Connecting over a cup of coffee

Catching up and connecting over a cup of coffee in the informal atmosphere of a coffee shop is perfect for conversation and connecting.  These meetings can be very productive and conducive to doing business.

How do you measure the value of the meeting and how do you convert these meetings into sales?

you, me and coffee

Want to learn more about networking and connecting?

Social Networking: From Rookie to expert in one week by Tina Bettison

This book is helpful for anyone who wants to understand social networks and how to use them effectively for work and career!

It’s a small world and with the advent of online networks it’s getting smaller. Now we can talk to just about anyone, anywhere, anytime. Who you know has always been as important as what you know. Social or business networks (ie, groups of people connecting together with a common interest) have existed since time began. Your connections are instrumental in everything from business deals or career progression to finding the best restaurant or beach to visit on holiday.

PROsimity: Business Networking by GeoNet Corp

Discover the best networking opportunities while at a conference, trade show, or professional event. We show you the business professionals in close proximity to you.  You can then sort them based on what you’re looking for and what they have to offer.

Networking Basics: 8 Tips to Networking Without Being Fake  by Marie Forleo

Networking basics are important for any entrepreneur to know. If you’ve ever felt like networking is boring and dull you’ll love this video. You’ll learn some simple strategies for making authentic connections outside of boring hotel conference rooms.

Stop thinking of networking as an “event”. Consider it an ongoing, lifelong process of building new relationships with people you actually like and want to be connected to.

If networking is seen as a relationship building rather than opportunistic it will become mutually beneficial. We are all time poor so you need to be able to measure the effectiveness of your networking.  Take the time to plan who, where and when you network.

Networking and connecting happens in many different environments and not just over a cup of coffee.

 

Originally posted 2016-01-02 15:57:25.