“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed By their creator with certain unalienable rights that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of happiness.”
The Declaration of Independence does not guarantee happiness. It does, however, make it very clear that it is our responsibility to pursue our own happiness. Only we can see our dreams and only we can live them. And if we can’t make ourselves happy, or be happy with ourselves, it’s a good bet that we will not be able to help anyone else.
Making yourself happy can be difficult today with all of the business challenges that surround us. We are being bombarded every day to the point that we sometimes find it hard to fight off negative distractions and stay focused. When this happens we allow ourselves to be the victim of ours, or others, circumstances as opposed to being the master of them. We rapidly approach overload and get consumed with minutia, worrying about what will happen next! We start to lose sight of our ability to achieve our goals. When this happens, our first priority is to gain back control, get back on track, and take charge of our destiny. Continue reading →
We are all challenged daily to not only make plans, but to actually “be in the moment” and keep the commitments inherent in those plans. We find ourselves constantly pulled in a number of competing directions – that we bring upon ourselves – with the result being we just can’t do it all. The results are sad: business opportunities are missed, we disappoint customers, co-workers and even our family and friends. When will it stop?
It stops when you exercise a healthy dose of self-discipline and make the decision – no the commitment – to stop! Start by stepping back and getting clarity on what’s important in that “moment.” You have to be 100% committed and present when at work and then 100% committed and present in your personal family life. Wherever you are, or whatever you’re doing, “Be in the Moment” to make the most of it.
Stop looking “to find or squeeze in” those important business appointments or special family moments between your self-imposed impossible schedule. Start by first determining what those important things are and then book them on your calendar right now! Stop waiting for the last minute to book it or when you happen to remember that you have to do something or be somewhere.
If you’re in a leadership role, it’s your responsibility to find that “common ground” when you are communicating with a team member. A “one-size-fits-all” approach to communication does not work, especially when you’re delegating work to be done and attempting to set specific expectations.
Far too often, non-performing leaders give minimal instructions (that only they understand) and quickly move on. They do no training. They then get frustrated when the work doesn’t get done properly and then launch a personal attack on their team member. They are also extremely good at writing vicious e-mails condemning an individual—who may in fact be deficient. Non-performing leader are basically insecure in their own abilities and compensate for their insecurity by attacking others.
Non-performing leaders tend to do things “to people” as opposed to working “with people.” Continue reading →
As I look at the most successful clients I have worked with, the one common link between them is their ability to make timely and quick decisions even in the face of incomplete or imperfect information. They know that decisions result in action which can lead to the growth of their business. Hence, the quicker they make the decision and act on it, the faster they will be able to put their business on a growth path.
Given how quickly the competitive landscape changes, taking too long to make needed decisions can be a business killer. Some will justify their reason to decide and act slowly as their need to “get it right.” In fact, they are really showing their aversion to risk and their need to want to be perfect. Trying to be perfect is also a business killer.
When running a business, nothing is ever perfect. You collect and evaluate the information you have, come up with a plan, decide and then take action. If you make the wrong decision, you make another one to make it right. It’s that simple. There is no need to study all of the sides of a circle!
“Yeah Right!?” That’s what I sometimes hear from certain business leaders when I talk about creating a “no excuse” culture within their organization. I’m then “reminded” that excuses are part of the game and you just have to accept them. From my perspective, accepting that “excuse making” comes with the territory is, well…an excuse not to take action!
Effective leaders know that building and sustaining a “no excuse” culture can be done – not overnight – but as a result of the combination of several distinct (but related) tactics. These tactics include: Continue reading →
A while ago, I wrote about “quiet confidence.” In that Wake-Up Call, I stated that quiet confidence means that you consistently believe in yourself – 100% – to the point where you know that success is the only outcome. Individuals who possess quiet confidence know exactly what they have to do to achieve their goals. They don’t talk about what they’re going to do, they let their actions (and results) speak for them. Individuals who practice quiet confidence possess a healthy dose of self-confidence.
Self-confidence is an important element of success. When you have it, you’re bold and are willing to take smart risks. You’re willing to question the “status quo” and try new approaches if that’s what it takes to be successful. You compete with yourself to be better from one day to the next.
If you’re a leader, you have the responsibility to instill self-confidence in each of the members of your team if you want them to perform at an effective level. Some leaders don’t see instilling self-confidence in their team as a necessary part of their role. That’s too bad because individuals who have doubts about their abilities do not perform at 100%. This could drag down the performance (and results) of the entire team.
Some of the ways a leader can pump up their team’s self-confidence are: Continue reading →
Over the span of my business career – and more recently in my role as an executive/business coach – I’ve witnessed what business owners have done to hurt their businesses and themselves. In some cases, they’ve even managed to run the business down to such a level that there was no way to recover.
Here are 3 ways to “kill” your business. Hopefully from this advice you’ll do the opposite. Yet, I know out there, there are some of you who unfortunately need to experience the pain before you realize that it is too late. Continue reading →
One of the keys to having a productive team is to create a work culture that possesses a clear vision; one built on strong values and demonstrates that you, the leader, genuinely care. Let’s talk about the “caring” part. To show your team that you care for them demands that you focus on “what makes them tick” as people, both individually and collectively. After all, they are people who are on your team.
Occasionally in business, we experience mistakes or missteps, breakdowns in communications or service breakdowns that result in “surprises” and serious business challenges (i.e., problems that need to be solved).
Similarly, in our personal lives we experience events or illnesses for ourselves or family members which result in a family crisis.
In many cases, whether in business or in our personal lives, when something unexpected and usually bad occurs, our first reaction is to ask “why.” When we ask “why,” there usually isn’t a very clear-cut answer or explanation. Asking “why” doesn’t offer solutions. It leads to guilt, blame, anger or frustration. When we experience these feelings, they eat at us and consume us emotionally, and eventually, physically. Asking “why” even leads to excuses being made, which really don’t help relieve the pain you may be feeling.