December 30, 2013

Compassionate Leadership

The sugar buzz from the Holidays may not have worn off yet but it is almost back to business. To many, this will be the toughest stretch of the year. Shortbread cookies and turkey comas are replaced by a look at a few months of work before the Spring or Summer breaks. To many, the cold reality of winter can seep into the consciousness.

So it's soon back to products, sales, marketing, people, share price, competition and many other factors that keep us up at night. As the 10 year anniversary comes up, a look back at the documentary The Corporation which examined the modern-day company. They evaluated its behaviour as a psychiatrist might evaluate you and me.

The Bottom Line

They concluded if the corporation was human, her ultimate goal would be to make money above all else. If that is the sole purpose of your company, be nervous. Fiscal health is imperative but without strong internal customer service, it will be a struggle.

We all share an inherent human need to belong which doesn't stop when entering the work area. Or again, think back a few days or weeks when people were a bit more relaxed and in better moods. We don't need eggnog and brightly colored ornaments to remember the importance of human connections.

Leading with compassion will serve you well.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

buyusedoffice

December 26, 2013

Our Spirit and Time

Google has been preparing a year-end review since 2001. They call it Zeitgeist which means spirit of the time or spirit of age. It's a look at our world in a couple of minutes. It's a snapshot of you and me. Here are the year-end lists since the company started compiling them and here's to a inspiring 2014!

Search on...






20092008200720062005
2004200320022001
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

Google Zeitgeist

December 23, 2013

A Gift Idea

Canadian television personality and comedian Rick Mercer has a wonderful gift idea this year for all of us. We have enough coffee mugs.

Watch this


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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

Rick Mercer

December 22, 2013

Curiosity Has No Age Limit

I posted this a few years ago and showed it to a client recently. If you visit here once in a while, you know I have a passion for leadership and culture. I also think it's a shame we begin talking about these topics far later in life than we should because they're important to people of all ages.

Meet Adora Svitak


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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

TED | Adora Svitak

December 19, 2013

Thanking Your Team

While many are enjoying the festive joy of the season of merriment (please don't drink and drive!), it is also the more reflective time of the year for most people. It’s the end of another year when we may take pause on our accomplishments and challenges from the past twelve months while looking toward some goals and plans for 2014.

While everyone is egg nogging and fruit caking, take a moment today and thank your team. They actually are your biggest asset and appreciating they show up every day and give their best is what sets your company apart.

Two simple words go a long way – thank-you.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

istock

December 14, 2013

Inquisitive Intuition

The intuitive mind is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant. We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift. Albert Einstein

It’s often said that things happen for a reason. It’s often said that we adapt to the result with which we’re faced with at any given time. This is not a work thing, it’s a life thing. We create what we want – even when it doesn't feel like it. Our energy pulls in what we focus on which can be what we want or what we don't want.

As children, one of the first words we learn is "no". Words such as; yes, imagine, how, create, come much later which may be why we gravitate to "can't" far too often. That may be why we first hear no in our minds soon after the idea. As leaders, we need to make sound decisions, but nothing is guaranteed so there is always be a chance of a misstep. But taking chances is where growth thrives.

First Impressions

Malcolm Gladwell talks about that feeling you get in your gut when you know you’re right in his book Blink. It happens to all of us. We sense there’s an opportunity, we feel it’s a good one, and then justify the reasons not to act. Our reflection then creates the "I knew it!" moment.

We have to be careful not to build in failure at the design stage then work toward fulfilling that prescribed inevitability. What we need to do is learn from past challenges but focus on successes. Food for thought for the next time you get that nagging urge to act yet find some excuse stop yourself.

Let's listen to our intuition more and stop thinking so much.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

microsoft

December 11, 2013

Action Vs Noise

Imagine working where ideas are shared and appreciated, each and every person in the organization is valued, and progress is measured not by empty promises and well crafted corporate speak but by the accomplishments of everyone involved. For real!

When you have a roomful of opinions all fighting for a voice in a decision making process, the result is often a lot of indecision. Each of us is entitled to our thesis but this is where the water gets murky. But if you can take time to entertain new ideas then move them forward with a clear plan and data to in turn shape the idea into something tangible while including input from all involved. You will see stronger ideas for your business and a much more engaged team.

Uncharted Territory 

This approach makes some people nervous because the process may seem laborious and could perhaps slow down results when you just want things done. It takes some time to get used to finding room for many voices and opinions while remaining on track.

If it's new to your team, the process won't be perfect, nothing is, but fresh thinking doesn't survive in status quo so it is worth the effort. Let someone on the team facilitate the first few times - not the highest ranking member of the team - and take it slow. Keep things factual and don't make it personal. Your business will be a more collaborative atmosphere where employees can offer opinions and ideas are considered.

People and Profits 

When we meet with a business leader who wants to improve the bottom line, it's usually much more than a revenue issue and it often begins with internal customer service. The relationships you build and nurture inside your business can represent 90% of your bottom line yet far too many companies view it as unimportant.

We work an average of 1,800 hours each year and that number is growing. Collaboration and communication remain critical building blocks for any leader who desires success. But you and I just talking about it won't make it happen.

Let's get to work!
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

emoclear

December 9, 2013

Yeah, But Why?

If you have kids, you have experienced the why game. A four year old won't just accept "because" or "it just is" or "just do it, I'm your mother" and let it go. But we slowly let that inquisitive process slip away as we get older.

Then we may stop asking why. 

Change is not easy but status quo can appear safe. Our inner four year old needs to show up more often so we can discover why do we do what we do.

Tony Robbins shares his thoughts.


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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

TED | Tony Robbins

December 6, 2013

Madiba

The father of democracy in South Africa and beloved man around the world died yesterday with the same dignity that gave him the strength to endure 27 years of imprisonment then emerge as the first black president of his country, the key figure in the ending of apartheid, and the recipient of the Noble Peace Prize.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela's poise, grace, and leadership inspired billions and will do so for generations to come.

PBS tells Mandela's story.


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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela | PBS

December 5, 2013

Do You Cause Trouble?

If you are not willing to risk the unusual, you will have to settle for the ordinary.
Jim Rohn

When we look at history, how often do we praise those who stayed between the lines? When did we last commend those who played by the rules and did what they were told? And where is the museum dedicated to those fearful of pushing boundaries?

No idea has ever been universally embraced from day one but that’s around the time most give up. We’ve all done it. We get an idea, someone says it’s dumb, and it dies. In order for a new idea to grow and survive; minds needs changing, focus needs realignment, and bias challenged. Courageous moves, valiant ideas, and brave action create that type of result. But that’s for other people to worry about, not us, right?

If you obey all the rules you miss all the fun.
Katharine Hepburn

We admire those who have guts to take chances. We like people who make a splash and blaze a path. But we subscribe to the “I really really really hope things will get better” strategy. Sure, the troublemakers do all the heavy lifting and change the world, but we’re not them. We prefer to tuck ourselves comfortably into what is expected of us and keep our desires for the wish list. It’s much easier to cite myriad reasons it didn’t go our way than take a chance and face ridicule. Who wants that?

Visualizing the solution before it arrives has been necessary for every idea that has ever seen the light of day. And then it has required help from others to see it through. But we couldn't possibly share our ideas and change the world. That will never work. We have rules to follow and protocol to respect.

Society honors its living conformists and its dead troublemakers. Mignon McLaughlin

There are people working on ideas right now that will change the world. But only those who share those ideas will actually accomplish them. We all have a warehouse full of cool ideas we didn't have the guts to step up and share and what good have those done for any of us?

Leadership is not about covering your corporate backside so you get that bonus and the VP stripes next quarter. It is about providing an atmosphere where ideas can be shared and true growth can happen because finding the no’s is easy. Putting in the time to find another yes requires work. So let’s get to work and share our ideas.

Unless you don’t want to cause any trouble.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

turbosquid

December 3, 2013

Learning and Other Bright Ideas

A couple of years ago, I began posting quotes, ideas, and thoughts on Twitter each morning that could be silly, life changing, or anything in between.

Some from December 2013

Flexibility will garner better results. You don’t need to make every decision.

Show grace under pressure.

If people call you sensitive, thank them.
It's better than being insensitive.

Turn your wounds into wisdom.
Oprah Winfrey

Don't let job titles get in your way.
Trust your gut.

Resist the temptation to take all the credit.
Fall seven times, stand up eight. (Proverb)

A short no is often preferred over a long maybe.
Bury the past. Laugh at least once a day.

We acquire the strength we have overcome.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Don’t hesitate this time. Be honest about your efforts.
No is a perfectly acceptable response.

Respect is how to treat everyone, not just those you want to impress.
Richard Branson

Balance confidence with competence.
Self-doubt serves no one.

Lower the bar and your best people will leave.
The culture begins with you. Own your decisions.

The purpose of our lives is to be happy.
Dalai Lama

Imagine. Create. Share. Lead.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

 
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