Posts Tagged ‘contribution’

Why Great Leaders Are Amplifiers

February 6th, 2018

‘Amplifiers are the rare and extraordinary leaders who amplify the best in themselves and others. They amplify the messages that matter, amplify the positive mood in a culture and amplify the results achieved.’

– Matt Church

In a world that seems to feed off of negativity, drama and hype our ability to amplify the positive stories, opportunities and results around us has never been so important. Unfortunately for many, living and working in environments that predominately focus and feed on the failures and barriers that get in the way of success is all too familiar. The reality though is that there are many extraordinary events happening, results being produced and opportunities arising every day. We just need help in seeing and hearing about them – especially with the pace and diversity at which we have now become accustomed to operating in.

Great leaders know this. Not only do they recognize their occurrence but they proactively seek to highlight them and in doing so have a significant impact on those around them and their outcomes. Great leaders are like amplifiers who know how to effectively increase the volume and quality of sound whilst minimizing distortion and unwanted feedback.  They amplify the highest of qualities and eliminate the distractions and unwanted noise.

Leaders who can help others recognize this, be it for themselves, their teams or their customers and clients are invaluable. People feel more energized by their presence and more confident that success can be achieved with the right focus. They are driven to put their best foot forward and be a part of the ‘extraordinary’. Just as success creates success so to does the habit of belief that extraordinary results are possible.

To build high performance, we as leaders we need to ensure that our focus is on amplifying the individual strengths, extraordinary results and constructive behaviours that contribute to ongoing success. To do this we need to make sure we are attracting and employing the right people for our organisations and teams; that we are creating workplace cultures that recognise individual contributions and reward healthy positive behaviours (and importantly remove that are not); and that we give people the freedom to operate from a place of strength.

However as Jon Stewart so aptly notes ‘if we amplify everything, we hear nothing’. As such we need to learn to be discerning about what constitutes the ‘extraordinary and successful’. We also need to be brave enough to address the results and behaviours that detract us from achieving what we set out to do. Failing to do so results in a culture of ‘anything goes’ where the lines between success and status quo or healthy and unhealthy prevail.

As leaders I would encourage you to reflect on how you amplify the following 5 areas in order to build individual, team and organisational success:

  • Strengths: Tom Rath & Barrie Conchie, authors of Strength Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams and Why People Follow – conducted studies that revealed engagement increased eightfold when leaders focused on their employee’s strengths as well as their own increasing from 9% to 73%.
  • Behaviours: How we act and behave in our workplace is fundamental to success our individual and overall success. Invariably they are the ‘linchpin’ not only in our abilities to deliver but in the timeliness and quality the results produced.
  • Results: Recognising and applauding results – both incrementally and at the point of final delivery – is important in helping to define what ‘great’ looks like. Amplifying great results also helps drive engagement, energy and productivity.
  • Contributions: Often success is the ‘sum or parts’ where a number of individuals have played a role in supporting the overall delivery. Learning to acknowledge the contributions of others is fundamental to elevating healthy workplace performance.
  • Learning: Not everything we undertake is considered a success. How we embrace failure, recognise it and learn from it is fundamentally important to creating healthy environments that encourage us to step out of our comfort zone. It also supports our efforts to create new ways of working, innovate and problem solve.

As always I would love to hear your thoughts.

Margot

Why Great Leaders Are Amplifiers

July 19th, 2016

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“Amplifiers are the rare and extraordinary leaders who amplify the best in themselves and others. They amplify the messages that matter, amplify the positive mood in a culture and amplify the results achieved.” 
– Matt Church
In a world that seems to feed off of negativity, drama and hype our ability to amplify the ‘good news stories’ and positive opportunities around us has never been so important. Unfortunately for many, living and working in environments that predominately focus and feed on the failures, problems and barriers that get in the way of success is all too common. The reality though is that there are many extraordinary events happening, results being produced and acts of genuine kindness being delivered every day. We just need help in seeing and hearing about them – especially with the pace and diversity at which we have now become accustomed to operating at.

Great leaders know this. Not only do they recognize their occurrence but they proactively seek to highlight them and in doing so have a significant impact on those around them and their outcomes. Great leaders are like amplifiers who know how to effectively increase the volume and quality of sound whilst minimizing distortion and unwanted feedback.  They amplify the highest of qualities and eliminate the distractions and unwanted noise.

Leaders who can help others recognize this, be it for themselves, their teams or their customers and clients are invaluable. People feel more energized by their presence and more confident that success can be achieved with the right focus. They are driven to put their best foot forward and be a part of the ‘extraordinary’. Just as success creates success so to does the habit of belief that extraordinary results are possible.

Interestingly our minds seem to work a lot like amplifiers– whatever we choose to listen to and focus on, the more enlarged the sound and impact seems to become in our mind. This is why it is so important to ensure that we focus our energy on amplifying the right things. Dwelling on the wrong things can set our career (and life) on a very different path or trajectory to the one that is possible if we choose to focus on the right things.

To build high performance, we as leaders need to ensure that we are focused on amplifying the individual strengths, extraordinary results and constructive behaviours that contribute to ongoing success. To do this we need to ensure that we are attracting and employing the right people for our organisations and teams; that we are creating workplace cultures that recognise individual contributions and reward healthy positive behaviours (and importantly remove that are not); and that we give people the freedom to operate from a place of strength.

However as Jon Stewart so aptly notes ‘if we amplify everything, we hear nothing’. As such we need to learn to be discerning about what constitutes the ‘extraordinary and successful’. We also need to be brave enough to address the results and behaviours that detract us from achieving what we set out to do. Failing to do so results in a culture of ‘anything goes’ where the lines between success and status quo or healthy and unhealthy prevail.

As leaders I would encourage you to reflect on how you amplify the following 5 areas in order to build individual, team and organisational success:

  • Strengths: Tom Rath & Barrie Conchie, authors of Strength Based Leadership: Great Leaders, Teams and Why People Follow – conducted studies that revealed engagement increased eightfold when leaders focused on their employee’s strengths as well as their own increasing from 9% to 73%.
  • Behaviours: How we act and behave in our workplace is fundamental to success – both our individual and overall team and organisational success. Invariably they are the ‘linchpin’ not only in our abilities to deliver but in the timeliness and quality the results produced.
  • Results: Recognising and applauding results – both incrementally and at the point of final delivery – is important in helping to define what ‘great’ looks like. Amplifying great results also helps drive engagement, energy and productivity.
  • Contributions: Often success is the ‘sum or parts’ where a number of individuals have played a role in supporting the overall delivery. Learning to acknowledge the contributions of others is fundamental to elevating healthy workplace performance.
  • Learning: Not everything we undertake is considered a success. How we embrace failure, recognise it and learn from it is fundamentally important to creating healthy environments that encourage us to step out of our comfort zone. It also supports our efforts to create new ways of working, innovate and problem solve.

As always I would love to hear your thoughts.

Margot Andersen

If you would like to explore ways to amplify your leadership capability or that of your team, please contact Margot on 0400 336 318.

Leading Others To Shine

June 22nd, 2016

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 “People who shine from within don’t need the spotlight” – Anon
We all know that the best leaders bring out the best in their people. Be it sporting leaders, cultural and community leaders or organizational leaders, they all somehow seem to possess the keys to unlocking the ‘shine’ in those who are fortunate enough to work with and for them.

In today’s rapidly changing world, this commitment to unlocking the shine in others has never been so great. Why? Because when individuals shine, they maximize not only their performance and efficiency but also their fulfillment, commitment and influence. When we have a whole team that shines we maximize organisational performance and by default our own capability and leadership potential.

All to often we hear about the need for more leaders but really what we need is more leadership. Leadership is most powerful when used as a verb and not merely a noun. It’s true effectiveness lies in the every day actions we take to grow capability, create options, problem solve and inspire others to achieve more.

Edward Hallowell, author of Shine: Using Brain Science To Get The Best From Your People notes that “All people want to work hard and will work hard, given the right job and the right conditions, because it feels supremely good to excel. Deep within us all beats a primal desire to contribute something of value to this world and to stand out as a positive person in the eyes of others. Great leaders and managers make this happen.”

Like a puzzle we therefore need to firstly make sure that we have the right people, in the right place at the right time. This can be easier said than done, especially when you have a change in business direction that requires new and different roles and a loyal workforce that has become comfortable in what and how they do things. Failing to address these changes though is like death by a thousand paper cuts that slowly bleeds away all elements of success, fulfillment and potential at both an individual and organisational level. As Edward Hallowell notes, it is only when people are in the right jobs that their brains light up.

So what can we as leaders do to create opportunities for others to shine? Consider the following 7 steps:

  1. Get clear on your business/team goals: In order to create opportunities for those in our team, we need to crystal clear on what it is we need to do, the timeframes and why.
  2. Know your own strengths and those of your team: Understanding your strengths (and blind spots) allows you to operate with not only a higher degree of productivity but also bravery and curiosity. When you and your team are able to be honest and transparent about what you do well, you will attract opportunities that capitalize on your individual and collective talents and passions.
  3. Align talents with opportunities: Complete the jigsaw – match individual talents with business opportunities. It is only when we do that the best in each individual will be bought to light.
  4. Build connection: It is important that individuals build connection between what they do and why as well as with whom they do it. Identifying and building this connection is of paramount importance if we are to building lasting success. Great leaders create a connection to what is possible: too many people in our workforce are disconnected with themselves and what they do because they no can longer see or believe what is possible.
  5. Create a ‘psychologically safe’ workplace: If we are to commit to growth and innovation we need to create workplaces that allow us to explore, ideate and become curious without the fear of retribution or penalty. It is only when feel safe that we are prepared to take the risk to try new things!
  6. Recognise valuable contribution: Creating a culture that recognizes valuable contributions, motivates others to strive for greatness and peak performance. Creating a culture that helps people to shine is a catalyst for future success.

As always I would love to hear your thoughts.

Margot Anderson[vcex_divider style=”solid” icon_color=”#000000″ icon_size=”14px” margin_top=”20px” margin_bottom=”20px”][vc_single_image image=”126″ border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” alignment=”none”]

If you would like to explore ways to help you and your team to shine, please contact Margot on 0400 336 318.

Developing The Habit Of Acknowledgement

May 10th, 2016

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 “Those who drink the water

must remember those who dug the well”

-Chinese Proverb
Acknowledgement is one of those things that you often don’t miss until it’s not given. Be it in the acknowledgement of someone as they walk into a room, an email received, a mistake made, the contribution of others or great work delivered, failing to acknowledge can be frustrating, demotivating and at times simply rude. Most of us don’t need to think too hard or long about a situation that could have been transformed if we had simply been acknowledged.

Yet acknowledgement is something that is so easy to give. It doesn’t cost us anything, is not time consuming and the benefits yielded for both the recipient and the person making the acknowledgement can be far reaching. For most of us learning the act of acknowledgement was an integral part of our upbringing – learning to say ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, greeting others in a genuine and interested manner and showing respect to others by acknowledging them and their efforts. Unfortunately however whilst it is still taught it no longer seems to be a ‘norm’ in many of today’s organisational cultures.

With many organisations formally implementing reward and recognition programs there is no doubt that at some level, acknowledgment is valued. However this formal process should not and cannot replace the personal responsibility we have to acknowledge those around us and their contributions in our everyday actions. As leaders it is one of our greatest tools for building motivated, engaged and connected individuals and teams. Leaders with the greatest following are the ones who personally acknowledge others, appreciate their work and guide them to leverage their contributions. This act of personal acknowledgement not only helps to forge stronger relationships by building loyalty and trust with the individuals who work with us, but also helps to enable more productive and timely results.

So considering all the benefits why does the act of acknowledgement seem to be disappearing? Judy Umlas, author of The Power of Acknowledgement believes it is a new set of habits that need to be developed and cultivated for today’s way of working. All too often we fail or forget to acknowledge others, not because we are thoughtless or unkind, but simply because we can’t always see what warrants it and our more traditional ways of recognising it no longer apply. As such we no longer acknowledge it. Bob Nelson, a leading engagement expert argues that the habit of acknowledgement is simply disappearing from our culture. We have become so use to not giving or receiving it that we no longer look for ways to give it.

There is no doubt that the fast paced and often frenetic ways that we now work require us to learn to ‘see’ what is happening around us in a different way. Coupled with the impact of technology, flexible and remote work environments and the ways we communicate, the way in which we observe each other’s contribution and the way we acknowledge has certainly changed enormously. However despite all these changes we still need to be acknowledged for what we have done. We need to feel connected to what we do, who we do it with and how we offer value to the team and organisational purpose.

So how do you cultivate the habit of acknowledgement? I would encourage you to consider the following seven steps:

Commit To Looking For Opportunities:  To identify them you need to firstly commit to looking for them. Reflect on each of your team members and stakeholders and consider what they are currently working on, what they have delivered and where their high value contribution is.

Audit Your Daily Routine: Often there are numerous opportunities to acknowledge others in our every day routines. The people you walk past on your way to your desk each morning, the commencement of meetings, the incidental tasks that others just naturally assume responsibility for, your regular client and supplier conversations.

Be Genuine: As with all communication, the benefits of acknowledging of others lies in the sincerity and purpose in which it is given. Be considered with you are acknowledging and how.

Be Timely: Don’t wait! Like feedback, acknowledgement is best given as close to the result is delivered or event occurs. The timeliness reinforces the value of the contribution to the here and now and often serves as a motivator for further effort.

Don’t Delegate It: Personal acknowledgement is just that – personal! It can’t be delivered with as much impact if delivered by your assistant or colleagues. You need to take ownership of your appreciation.

Consider How: To deliver meaningful acknowledgement you need to consider both who you are delivering it too and what the most appropriate format is for that person. If they hate public acknowledgement, think of something that will hold real meaning for them. Sometimes the value of a hand written card can’t be under-estimated!

Like all habits that need developing, we need to prioritise and practice the act of acknowledging others. However when we do, the benefits are enormous, both for us as individuals and for the people who we lead.

As always I would love to hear your thoughts.

Margot Andersen

If you would like to explore ways to reinvigorate your career with confidence, clarity and purpose, please contact Margot on 0400 336 318.

The Power of Thought Leadership

August 25th, 2015

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“Leadership is bringing people into new realms of excellence and challenging them to become distinguished in their chosen field ”

-Onyi Anyado
What we do matters. Not only have most of us spent considerable time, energy and investment honing our skillsets, mindsets, and careers, we have no doubt spent numerous hours deliberating, stressing over and/or celebrating many of our decisions, actions and achievements. Why? Quite simply it is because when we invest so heavily in what we do it becomes an extension of who we are and what we value.

So how is it that some people seem to become more highly regarded for this whilst others (who have the same knowledge, skillsets and drive) don’t? The answer lies in their positioning as Thought Leaders.

Thought Leaders are the ‘go-to’ people and informed opinion leaders in their industry or field of expertise. They are fast becoming the movers and shakers of today’s leadership world because they have ability to not only inspire people with innovative thinking but to equip them with the knowledge and tools to turn ideas into reality. They have the ability galvanize thoughts and actions and transform the way things are done. Furthermore they are achieving significant impact by harnessing the belief and engagement of others in what they do and stand for.

Positioning ourselves as thought leaders is one of the most effective ways to future proof our careers. Not only does it lead to exposure for our ideas it increases our ability to influence decisions and thinking at a much higher level, be it within an organisation, industry or community. Rather than us as individuals seeking out opportunities we find that opportunities seek us out. We become much more attractive and valuable in what we do and how.

Importantly, thought leadership is not merely about being known or famous. It is about being known for making a difference. For this reason, becoming a Thought Leader requires time and experience as well as courage to put ourselves into the spotlight. Leveraging our knowledge and backgrounds requires us to commit to showcasing our talents, achievements and successes and sharing a blue print for others to do the same. It is through this replication of success that our positioning as a Thought Leader is cemented.

So how do we position ourselves as thought leaders in our careers?

  1. Identify The Business Of You: To build your unique advantage and position you need to know your strengths, your blind spots and what it is exactly that you stand for. Understand how the ‘business of you’ i.e. your brand is positioned in the market place.
  2. Simplify Your Message & Platform: Effective leaders are able to simplify the ambiguous and the complex and make more sense out of the ordinary. They communicate it in a straightforward manner that helps enable others and turn ideas into a reality.
  3. Build A Strategic Network: Identify your own circle of influencers and align with the right partners, advocates and communities who will elevate you and your message.
  4. Create A Blueprint: Thought leaders not only create opportunities to see and experience a new way of thinking, they create a blueprint for others to follow. They provide frameworks, processes and guides to help others achieve success and in doing so create a community that align with what they do and stand for.
  5. Align Your Brand: To really elevate your professional positioning, your values, knowledge, achievements and behaviours need to align with your messaging. Your LinkedIn profiles, blogs, publications, and other online or print messaging needs to reinforce exactly who you are, what you do and what you stand for.
  6. Contribute & Engage: Identify ways to make meaningful and authentic contributions that consolidate your message, be it through speaking, writing, or your day-to-day engagement as a strategic leader.
  7. Position Yourself For Success: This is not about seeking out opportunities for endless self promotion but opportunities that will show case you and your message; raise your visibility; and allow you to influence and inspire others into new ways of thinking, new pathways and new opportunities.
  8. Scale & Replicate: Build a long term influencing strategy that positions you as the go to person for your industry, your business and your teams.

As leaders, most of us are driven to bring about lasting change that has a legacy long after we have left the building. Knowing that we have created new and sustainable opportunities, and transformed our teams and businesses not only positions us as Thought Leaders or experts in our filed it also raises the degree of personal fulfilment in what we do.

Margot AndersenIf you would like to explore ways to build confidence, clarity and choice in your career please contact Margot on 0400 336 318.

The BBQ Chat

December 9th, 2014

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If you want to go fast, go alone.

If you want to go far, go with others. 

– African Proverb
[vcex_divider style=”solid” icon_color=”#000000″ icon_size=”14px” margin_top=”20px” margin_bottom=”20px”][vcex_spacing size=”10px”]Tis the season to be jolly! For many of us here in Australia, it means beach holidays, summer bbq’s and lazy days where we have the time to really engage with those we want to spend some quality time with.

It is the season to catch up with family, friends, old colleagues and community networks. To reconnect; to reflect on the year that has been and tell a few stories; and to discuss plans, hopes and ambitions for the year ahead. Invariably there will be old university mates; ex colleagues; sporting mates and neighbours in this mix. Familiar faces along with a few new ones who are all an extension of who you know.

It also means it is a perfect time for networking … and networking of the best kind – genuine opportunities to get together because you want to, with people you normally share some degree of common interest with and in environments that see us comfortable, relaxed and with time to engage.

Making the most of these genuine opportunities does mean though that you need to have your ‘bbq story’ ready. How we reflect on the year that has just passed and discuss our opportunities ahead is a critical part of building and establishing our own personal brand. Doing this with the people who are closest to us and who are or can be key influencers can be a challenge for many because the notion of work and life remain two very separate worlds.

True networking is about contribution. It is about the giving and receiving of support, advice and tools to help us be better at what we do and want to do. For most of us, the people that we hold in our inner circle genuinely want to be able to support what we do and our future directions. They can’t however do this if they don’t know what our personal journey is.[vc_single_image image=”433″ border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_blank” alignment=”none” link=”http://talentinsight.com.au/private-coaching/”][vcex_spacing size=”20px”]The way we tell ‘our story’ is a critical part of building our personal brand and reputation. This brand can help build our direction or it can become a hindrance. It is what others seek out to support key decisions, understand more about industries, companies and people. One of the most common misconceptions individuals have about their brand is that it is really only important for when they want to make a shift in their career. The reality is that it supports all phases of our career whether we are looking to grow, consolidate or change.

I believe that there are three key reasons why our BBQ stories are so important:

They demonstrate: capability, resiliency, proactivity and insight

They build: understanding, interest and reason for further connection

They establish: opportunities for follow up

Consider these four tips when building and delivering your BBQ Story:

Think story not pitch: This isn’t the time to ‘sell’ your latest business plan, recruit your team or close a deal. It is however a time to establish interest in what you are doing and share some of the journey of how you are doing it. Offering insights into what you do, your style and your achievements is about establishing rapport and opportunity for future conversations.

Listen more than you talk: Great networkers focus on asking quality questions and stepping back to understand what and how others think, act and behave. Asking questions that are ‘others focused’ allows you to uncover the stories of those around you and understand who might be in a position to help you and your journey and vice versa.

Limit shop-talk: Keeping your discussions focused on scenarios rather than incidents will allow for others to contribute to the conversation. Diving into details that are workplace specific alienates others from the conversation. It can also very quickly lead to compromising discussions that become fodder for gossip and ultimately damaging for you and your personal brand.

Remain future focused: Regardless of how good or bad your past year was, the ability to remain focused on the future and the opportunities ahead is crucial. Positive, proactive and forward thinking people are naturally engaging. Being excited about where you are going and/or new possibilities generates interest from others.

Your BBQ story is not about landing your next job, promotion or recruiting your next team member. It is about creating opportunity for building mutually beneficial relationships that offer support, insight and opportunities for future engagement. These networks like all good relationships require personal connection and time to grow. Taking the time this holiday season to establish or build upon these personal connections is a valuable opportunity to invest in your future career success.[vcex_divider style=”solid” icon_color=”#000000″ icon_size=”14px” margin_top=”20px” margin_bottom=”20px”][vc_single_image image=”126″ border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” alignment=”none”]If you would like to discuss ways to build your personal brand and networking plan, please contact Margot directly on margot@talentinsight.com.au or +61 3 9866 3842.[vcex_divider style=”solid” icon_color=”#000000″ icon_size=”14px” margin_top=”20px” margin_bottom=”20px”][vc_single_image image=”88″ border_color=”grey” img_link_target=”_self” alignment=”none” link=”http://talentinsight.us3.list-manage.com/subscribe?u=961a17dac8287c94458c7983d&id=f81e0aac65″]

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