I recently worked with a leader who had strong technical skills but kept getting stuck on one specific procedure that he performed daily. He possessed all the background needed to master his challenging tasks but repeatedly became overwhelmed when he reached a certain point. He threw his hands up when we spoke:
“I just can’t figure out how to get over this hurdle. I need to learn this step but I have a block. Why can’t someone else just do it?”
As I listened to his frustrations I kept thinking about all his knowledge and abilities. They were all there. What was preventing him from being successful? What was holding him back? He lacked… Continue reading | 8 Comments
Independence Day is upon us in the United States and many will celebrate with fireworks, social gatherings and plenty of barbecued food. It is a joyous time as we honor those who helped create a country of freedom and choice. Along with having the many opportunities, comes a great deal of responsibility and expectation. We need to be open to different points of view and be willing to hear all sides of an issue before declaring our stand. But what is most fascinating about this process is that once you actually behave this way, it becomes a way of life naturally.
The same is true for any team or organization. When individuals embrace a free… Continue reading | 4 Comments
Rituals are important to the survival of any organization as they contribute to the unique culture of a workplace. Rituals can mean honoring our co-workers’ birthdays with cards that everyone signs and a special birthday cake or making Wednesday “Bagel Day” for the firm. Some teams embrace the ritual of a monthly Happy Hour to connect with everyone in a less formal setting while other teams support a “Field Day” filled with outdoor activities to get to know one another better. Whatever the ritual, to feel part of our work worlds we honor those routines and behaviors.
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Rituals are also the key to i… Continue reading | 2 Comments
Let’s face it; many of us are continually in search for that perfect job or career. We aren’t totally unhappy where we are now, but we also aren’t feeling completely fulfilled in our professional choices. We listen enviously as some of our colleagues and friends share their work stories with passion and excitement. We wonder if we will ever find that magical place. Some of these leaders are new to their careers while others have been in their jobs for many years. It doesn’t matter how long we have been in our jobs if something is missing or just doesn’t meet the expectations we might have.
These past few weeks I have heard many… Continue reading | 6 Comments
My Problem-Solving workshops always bring a lot of laughter when leaders explore the good and the ugly of challenges they face in their workplaces. It is a great opportunity for participants to take a down and dirty look at ways to overcome roadblocks. In one of the programs we spent a great deal of time working on ways to improve communication flow from customers to team members. Information wasn’t being disseminated effectively so both customers and team members were constantly frustrated. In another organization only a small number of people ended up contributing to a solution and there wasn’t a great deal of buy-in. Although decisions were made, team members often did not utilize… Continue reading | 6 Comments