Posted by Louellen Essex on July 10, 2015 in Change Management, Communication, Team Development
Whether you move to a new organization or transit within your current place of work, the approach you use to begin a new leadership role can help or hinder your success. To staff members, a new leader is the source of hope as well as fear. Will you bring new insight and needed change? Or, will valued practices and relationships be damaged or destroyed? Make sure you send the right signals that calm staff anxiety and focus on building an effective collaboration that leads to a productive work environment. Here’s how.
Posted by Louellen Essex on June 09, 2015 in Performance Management, Team Development
What happens if you or other key players in your organization leave? Better job offers, retirements, extended illness, or unanticipated death can cause undue chaos if succession plans are not in place. Yet, many organizations fail to create them, at great expense to their business outcomes and the staff who struggle to fill the gaps. Consider, when developing succession plans, not only leadership positions, but also other roles that are integral to the organization’s success. Use the following guidelines to make sure you have the talent in place to keep your organization vital, whatever the future may bring.
Posted by Louellen Essex on May 07, 2015 in Leadership, Performance Management
Most leaders say that coaching is an important part of their role in developing staff. Few, however, find the time to do it well. Yet, employees of all ages and performance levels say they want more coaching from leaders they respect. Through feedback and advice giving they hope to learn how to become better at their work and advance their careers. Leaders often think of coaching in a limited way – as a joint problem solving session held with individuals to discuss their concerns or performance issues. Expand your coaching repertoire by using the following methods most certain to give your staff a developmental boost.
Posted by Louellen Essex on April 03, 2015 in Change Management, Communication, Team Development
Change is continual in most of today’s organizations. Some change may be met with applause, especially when bringing desired benefits. But, often the upshot is significant resistance. Most staff resist when they perceive they are losing something to which they are attached: i.e., relationships, status, physical surroundings, work processes, technology. But the blow is worsened when those initiating the change make these critical mistakes, reducing their credibility and trust.
Posted by Louellen Essex on March 09, 2015 in Managing Difficult Situations, Performance Management, Team Development
Motivation is a complex topic. Because each employee has differing needs and drives, one size doesn’t fit all. Yet, everyone has a handful of basic desires: to make a contribution, to feel part of something meaningful, and to be acknowledged. Sometimes leaders forget to utilize those fundamental principles to create a motivating work environment. Here are some things you can do to energize your workforce.
Posted by Louellen Essex on February 19, 2015 in Communication, Managing Difficult Situations
No leader does everything correctly all of the time. Mistakes most typically involve misinterpretation of information leading to poor decision-making, not including the right people at the right time in important initiatives, intervening too late in a situation, demonstrating poor interpersonal behaviors that create defensiveness and a climate of disrespect, or not using resources wisely. A poorly executed recovery can make things worse, destroying the leader’s credibility and perceived trustworthiness. Consider the following “AAA” guidelines if you find yourself in the challenging aftermath of making a critical mistake.
Posted by Louellen Essex on February 03, 2015 in Managing Difficult Situations, Team Development
Trust is essential to a productive relationship between leaders and their staff members. Without it, the work environment becomes filled with fear and uncertainty. Trust is built through a pattern of trustworthy behavior that occurs consistently over a period of time. It can, however, be destroyed in a matter of minutes. Be aware of and avoid these trust-busting behaviors.
Posted by Louellen Essex on January 08, 2015 in Leadership
While the New Year is a time to set goals and plan ahead, what about staying in the present, focused on the here and now? Mindfulness is a conscious effort to be completely present, setting aside worries, expectations, judgment, and other thoughts and emotions to be fully aware of the current moment. It’s the opposite of automatic functioning, going through routines without thinking or noticing what is going on around you. For leaders, this means giving your full attention to the events occurring now, pushing aside distraction. Here’s how you can put this concept into practice.
Posted by Louellen Essex on December 11, 2014 in Change Management, Communication, Managing Difficult Situations
We’ve all had encounters with co-workers that didn’t go well, yielding lasting negative consequences. The resulting tension in the air makes communication awkward and productivity often wanes. Realistically, some relationships are easier to repair than others, since you can’t force reconciliation. Making a sincere attempt to restore a damaged relationship, however, has a good chance of success if you follow these guidelines.
Posted by Louellen Essex on November 21, 2014 in Managing Difficult Situations, Team Development
With Thanksgiving around the corner, now is a good time to think carefully about how you show gratitude to your staff for their contributions to the work environment. Research tells us time and time again that many don’t feel they are appreciated for their efforts, particularly as the pace of change accelerates in many organizations, causing long hours and extra demands. Make sure your employees know they are not taken for granted. Tell them, through words and deeds, that you value their presence, their work, and their dedication. Here’s how.