You may be trying to operate your own business, but it just doesn’t seem to be working. You know something’s wrong, but you don’t know what. What I’ve written in this post expands on the post in pt I of this series, and will help you discern if you’re out of position. Meaning you’re in the wrong role for what naturally fits you. (Now I’m all for temporarily doing this to gain great perspective, and acquire new skills. However, stay in the wrong roll too long, and it’s called STRESS!) Don’t lose hope though, I run into entrepreneurs all the time who struggle with this very issue, and yet gained the necessary assistance and are now highly successful. One way, is to create a culture of accountability, and then to plug into it. There are ways you can make a position that doesn’t fit you, still work! But first you have to recognize the cold hard facts, be brutally honest with yourself. Then you can create an action plan that works, and fits you. So, if you’re ready to discern your situation, let me ask you if any of the below scenarios and/or feelings sound like you?
You have employees to supervise, but you loathe, no you despise confrontation and avoid it at all cost!
You prefer instead, to allow things to work out on their own.
How’s that working for you? Things won’t work out on their own-they usually escalate and get worse.
In fact, you know you’ve got someone out of position, when a company-wide policy is made for everyone, instead of correcting to the one person abusing the system.
You’d rather fix things, and work around the facility, than deal with people, avoiding them until absolutely necessary.
You don’t have a natural sense of what to do to motivate, lead, and redirect those in your charge. Worse yet, you’ve never been given any formal training on how to be a successful leader – manager. If this is the case, please HEAR ME. This was not your fault! Let me say that again, “You are not to blame for being in this position!” However, that said, you have no excuse to not take the responsibility to obtain the tools and skills necessary to successfully influence and lead, even if you only have two employees! In fact, every personality style can be an effective, successful leader, by using their personality style appropriately, along with maximizing their strengths, while delegating or eliminating their weaknesses! In fact, what some would consider natural leaders, can be the very worst leaders, leading like a bull in a china shop! I liken this to a strong willed horse that’s never been broken. They’ve never learned to bring their strengths “Under Control” to best utilize them. Luckily, we live in a day and age where resources on this topic are in abundance! GREAT materials, books, DVD’s, mp3′s, and podcasts on the subject are prolific, especially at our public library. In fact, go to my LinkedIn profile and you can see my reading list filled with some of the best in leadership.
Stay tuned. In part III of this leadership series, you’ll find how and when it’s time to move on, or step down from the frustration of trying to be something you have never enjoyed, and have never felt successful doing! You will also discover how to best adapt your style to be the best leader/manager you can be, and how and why a Business Development Coach or Executive Coach can be your best resource to assist you and your organization in establishing successful leaders and managers of every behavioral style.
What are the Necessary Elements You Need, as a Leader, to Attract, Motivate, and Keep the Most Talented Employees?
The Gallop organization discovered that the employees who rated the questions below more positively , had a company with much higher levels of productivity, greater profit, higher retention and more satisfied customer service.
To build a productive, collaborative, positive climate, the questions below will guide your actions toward retention. Find a way to keep your pulse on how your employees are “really” doing, will take some tact, and even some investigation. Those on their way out won’t as readily or honestly share how they’re doing. They won’t want to tip you off. Be creative, but not sneaky in your effort to learn the answers to these questions.
- Do I know what is expected of me at work?
- Do I have the materials and equipment I need to do my work right?
- At work, do I have the opportunity to do what I do best every day?
- In the last seven days, have I received recognition or praise for doing good work?
- Does my supervisor, or someone at work, seem to care about me as a person?
- Is there someone at work who encourages my development?
- At work, do my opinions seem to count?
- Does the mission/purpose of my company make me feel my job is important?
- Are my co-workers committed to doing quality work?
- Do I have a best friend at work?
- In the last six months, has someone at work talked to me about my progress?
- This last year, have I had opportunities at work to learn and grow.
At Starbucks, they are ingenious in the way they gather this kind of information. They conduct “skip level” interviews. This alone elicits a natural accountability, as they do it often enough that those who work at Starbucks, and both my children have been “shifts” at Starbucks, know their actions will be disclosed to the powers that be, hence some of why you have positive, friendly employees that are known as partners, and truly treated as such.
In preparing for a strategic planning retreat with a nonprofit next week, who is looking to recruit, retain, and motivate the next generations, Generation “X” and Generation “We” or also called the Millennial generation, I discovered this phenomenal video. Watch it, be inspired, and, if you are of the “Boomer Generation” lament over the world we are turning over to our children and grandchildren, and then join me in doing something about it!
This is a powerful reminder that what we do today, not only reflects on tomorrow, but has perilous consequences for our children, our planet, and the future. Leadership is about change, and change just may take a new generation at the helm, who have more at stake than any other generation that has gone before them. Without a generation that is passionate to make a difference, this could be our last! Yet, if you’re like me, you’ll want to join their efforts, in whatever way possible, and “Be” the difference NOW.
One way I am working on making a difference is through training that inspires the generations on how to effectively work “with” one another, in order to engendering collaboration which elicit environments where creativity is used to discover the answers to the dilemmas we have created.
WITHOUT THIS YOU WON’T GO FAR AS A LEADER
You might think it’s having vision, or big picture thinking. You may ascertain it’s reading a financial spread sheet, or negotiating a big deal, but there’s one thing that will break you quicker than anything else, whether you’re a leader of a large corporation, or the owner of a small start up. This skill has come to the forefront only in the past few years and demanded attention. It is none other than “people skills”. When I discover a leader that takes the time to understand, listen to, direct, motivate, coach, and correct their staff in a way that brings out the best in them, I rarely find they need my coaching or consulting expertise. You might be thinking “Sue, you’ve got to be kidding me”. No, really I’m not. You see, I remember meeting a high level executive from a very prominent project and I told him, “You know, John” (you realize I’m not using his real name) if you would meet with your secretary regularly (because she was the company gate-keeper,) and ask her questions about what’s going on around the company, you’d have all the information I’m using to assist you in creating a Strategic Plan”. I’m telling you, you could save yourselves a lot of heartache and hundreds of thousands of company dollars by growing in the ability to understand people. And by focusing a bit more on them, you’ll gain leadership confidence in the process. Besides that, you’ll find the trickle-down filtering into your family life, and I’ve been told, that’s priceless.