“The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.”
– William Arthur Ward
When it comes to effectively leading teams and organizations in today’s fast-paced, 24/7 global economy, it’s becoming more and more evident that the days of command-and-control leadership are well behind us. That – to paraphrase the quote above – organizations need leaders who don’t just explain or demonstrate the relevance of their vision to those they lead. Rather, what organizations require are leaders who can inspire employees to commit themselves wholeheartedly to making this vision a reality.
It’s a recurring theme found in some of the talks I’ve given this year, going from my keynote speech given at a leadership conference in Chicago last month to my next presentation in Utah in September: that as leaders, we need to do more than simply paint grand visions of the future; we also have to provide an environment where our employees can see the opportunity to grow, evolve, and help build the kind of future that they want to be a part of.
As I prepare for my talk next month on how leaders can help their organizations to shift from relying solely on training programs to promoting a continuous learning environment, I’d like to share the following 3 measures to provide some insights on how you can do the same in your organization.
1. Encourage your employees to challenge their assumptions
One of the first things we have to do to promote continuous learning in our organization is to encourage our employees to challenge their assumptions of their capabilities as well as of what’s possible. To understand the importance of this step to creating a continuous learning environment, we need to first understand how our brain performs tasks.
When our brain performs tasks or makes decisions, it not only taps into the Click here to continue reading »”How To Promote Continuous Learning In Your Organization”
The following is a guest piece by Jesse Newton and Josh Davis.
If you’re trying to instill organizational change in your company, then you face not just a logistical shift, but a cultural challenge as well. Employees will have to think differently, see people differently, and act in new ways. Employees also need to continually reinforce the right habits in one another so that the customer experience is on their minds everywhere.
One method that can help is known as pride building. This is a cultural intervention in which leaders seek out a few employees who are already known to be master motivators, adept at inspiring strategic awareness among their colleagues. These master motivators are invited to recommend specific measures that enable better ways of working.
Pride builders in a wide variety of companies and industries tend to recommend three specific measures time and time again: (1) giving more autonomy to frontline workers, (2) clearly explaining to staff members the significance and Click here to continue reading »”3 Valuable Insights Leaders Can Learn From Neuroscience”
One of the things I enjoy in writing about leadership is looking out for new insights into how we can become a better leader to those we serve, as well as discovering new examples that can help to illustrate what those measures might look like in action. The most recent example of this came courtesy of my daughter Alya’s dance recital, a show she had to participate in as part of her dance class curriculum.
Now granted, as her father it’s only natural that my focus and attention would be on watching my daughter and being dazzled by her performance. But outside of that typical parental pride, there was one thing that was unmistakable about Alya’s performance – as she danced on that stage, it was clear to everyone that she was having fun.
What was particularly noteworthy about this is that in openly expressing her joy while she danced – irrespective of whether she was the best dancer on stage or not – she actually made her performance that much more enjoyable because her emotional expressiveness drew the audience in. Indeed, after the show, a few of the other parents came up to me to pass along a message to Alya about how much they enjoyed her dance because they appreciated the obvious enthusiasm she brought to the stage.
Hearing these comments made me realize that this is something leaders tend to overlook or fail to take into consideration regarding not only how they communicate to their employees, but also what efforts they make to better relate to those under their care.
More specifically, as leaders, we know the value of the vision or the change initiatives we want to push through our organization. But how many of us can say that our employees see and understand the value behind our collective efforts as well?
In looking at the various studies on employee morale and engagement levels in today’s workplaces, the answer to this question is Click here to continue reading »”Are You Creating Value Through Your Leadership?”
The following is a guest piece by G5 Learning co-founder and author Steven Smith.
Everyone wonders where their true strengths lie. Each year millions devote themselves to discovering those strengths for the first time, and building those strengths into true potential. What most people don’t realize is the level of confidence it takes to get there.
And that limits them.
In spite of decades of clichés and motivational speeches about confidence, true confidence has a radically different set of rules than what tradition tells us. As perhaps the greatest catalyst of human achievement, one that has the capacity to impact everything we do to realize potential, confidence deserves a closer look and undivided attention.
A Choice, Not a Symptom
“Confidence is a choice,” wrote marketing savant Seth Godin, “not a symptom.” Godin’s statement resonates because it’s true. It’s powerful because that truth changes everything. But if confidence is a choice rather than a symptom, then how we make those choices is vital.
It’s not enough to claim confidence as a choice and expect it to appear. If confidence is to be Click here to continue reading »”The One Ingredient Your Strengths May Be Missing”
The following is a guest piece by Al Switzler.
At some point during the work week, most of us face a gap—the difference between what was expected and what was actually delivered. Gaps, in a nutshell, include violated expectations, broken commitments and bad behaviour. If you’ve felt let down, disappointed or offended, you have experienced a gap. How you deal with gaps makes a huge difference on the quality of relationships and results as a whole.
So how do most respond when faced with a gap? Let’s look at the three options for dealing with gaps and highlight the consequences of each.
1. You see a gap and don’t speak up
You give permission for what’s happening when you remain silent. By saying nothing, you vote for the status quo. Silence is seldom golden; it is almost always interpreted as approval. By not speaking up, you typically act out in other ways.
Your non-verbals, like frowning, rolling your eyes and gossiping, tend to leak out and eventually erode trust and respect. If you let thoughts and emotions build up until you explode, you may say and do things that further hurt the relationship. This leads to the second option. Click here to continue reading »”Accountability At Work – How To Describe The Gap”