June 30, 2013

Your Gut is Your Best Guide

I like to share a daily thought, idea, quote, or quip on Twitter.

Here are some highlights from June 2013

Imagine the possibilities. You can choose or someone will choose for you. It’s not how big your share is, it’s how much you can share. Eddi Reader

There is a chasm between confidence and arrogance. If you want your team to make you a priority, you must make them a priority.

The most effective way to do it is to do it. Amelia Earhart

Attempting shortcuts can often lengthen the process. Our perspective and reality can sometimes be a coincidence. Never underestimate yourself. Ever.

Keeping an open mind can open up a lot of doors. Never underestimate the wonderment of children.

Your gut is often your best guide. The imagination is powerful. Einstein

Diligence is the architect of good luck. The reason why worry kills more people than work is that more people worry than work. Robert Frost

Live well. Share well. Care well. Be well.

If you truly want someone's opinion, be prepared to hear their opinion. All we have is now. Asking for help is a sign of strength.

Collaboration only thrives on a two-way street. If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old. Peter Drucker

Imagine. Create. Share. Repeat.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

shutterstock

June 25, 2013

Leading Your Culture Plan

Think back to your best bosses or beloved mentors. Did they remind you of all the doom and gloom? Was it their quest to constantly point out and highlight your flaws and shortcomings? Or did they steer you to focus on your strengths and talents?

Businesses, as with each of us, have plans in place to succeed. No one makes a habit of navigating their work into the proverbial rocks. Yet it happens.

It’s not that we make a plan; it’s that we may not even have the challenges facing in the direction. Whatever gets our attention gets our energy. We often see companies that are risk averse or investors who don't want to lose more money.

Mean What We Do

Imagine you’re at an amusement park enjoying a summer afternoon eating junk food, playing games and enjoying some rides with friends. Suddenly you hear a man yelling. As you get closer, you see he is actually screaming at his two young children. As you get closer still, you can make out what he’s saying; “Get on that ride and have fun!” What do you imagine is the kids reaction?

Having a plan that is flexible is essential. But often we can do what we think we need to do and remain stuck. As leaders, we can push our people to work harder without really knowing that we’re even working in the right direction. Activity and progress can get lost in our pursuit to improve. If our plan is flawed, changing the tactics may not help.

Are your best laid plans and your goals aligned?
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

formspring

June 22, 2013

Choices

One evening a man told his grandson about a struggle that goes on inside people. He wanted to illustrate the internal conflict each of us has and the choices we make to navigate that battle. The story can help us in life, in business, and in ourselves.

He said; “The battle is between two wolves inside us all. One is evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego. The other is good. It is joy, peace, love, serenity, humility, hope, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, compassion and faith.”

The grandson then asked; “Which wolf wins?”
The man replied; “The one you feed.”

In our lives, careers, or businesses, the choice is up to us. 
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

istock

June 19, 2013

Are You a Good Citizen?

If you visit here regularly, you may have gathered I have deep passion to help managers become stronger leaders and companies to have collaborative culture. There is ample measurable data available to show any naysayer that a happy workplace creates a more profitable enterprise. This is the work we love doing with clients at the Heart of Culture.

Dr. Bret L Simmons is a professor at the University of Reno. We met years ago through Twitter. We have since connected on the phone to discuss our passions for helping people grow, leadership, organizational development, and culture. I look forward to more chats.

His TEDx Reno keynote takes it one critical step forward.  


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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

Bret L Simmons | TEDx Reno

June 17, 2013

Seven Percent

Communication is at the cornerstone of our lives. We email, text, phone, meet, talk, and connect because we have an inherent need to belong. And there are countless studies out there that point to the way we receive communication.

One of the most adopted and accepted appeared in a book by Albert Mehrabian entitled Silent Messages. His research found that the person receiving our messages gives 55% of their attention on our body language and eye contact, 38% to our tone, and just 7% to our words. So how we say it carries more weight than what we say.

What do you mean?

It becomes even trickier with the myriad technology and platforms we use to communicate. This explains a lot of misunderstood emails which we've all received and sent. Sometimes a simple :-) can save a lot of grief.

According to Mehrabian and many others, non-verbal cues carry 93% of the weight of any communication. So if you’re in a leadership role, think about how that can help you strengthen or hinder the culture in your business.

Something to gesture about.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

agilitrix

June 16, 2013

Thanks Dads!

The family unit is something we seem to redefine all the time. The days of mom and dad and two kids and a dog and the white picket fence are not as common as they used to be and things have changed over the last half century or so. Divorce, second and third marriages, step kids, half siblings, extended family units, same sex marriages, adoption, etc., all shift our definition of family.

So when we look at long standing traditions like Mother’s Day last month (thanks mom, you rock!) and in many countries around the world, Father’s Day today, we can think of the people not the situation and give pause to the relationship we have or had with him. And thanks to Sonora Smart Dodd who founded Father's Day at the YMCA in Spokane, Washington in 1910.

A few words as we raise a mug to dads today...

Any man can be a father. It takes someone special to be a dad.

We never know the love of a parent till we become parents ourselves.
Henry Ward Beecher

When I was a boy of 14, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be 21, I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years. Mark Twain

Never raise your hand to kids. It leaves your groin unprotected. Red Buttons

It is not flesh and blood but the heart which makes us fathers and sons. Johann Schiller

My father gave me the greatest gift anyone could give another person,
he believed in me. Jim Valvano

The older I get, the smarter my father seems to get. Tim Russert

Thanks dad!
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

visualphotos

June 11, 2013

A 12-Step Program for Leaders

We like lists. They’re nice and tidy. We can agree or argue over the content or order, but they certainly start conversations. They could be the 10 best restaurants in Philadelphia, the most desirable countries in which to live, the biggest sporting breakdowns in history, etc.

As someone who loves helping and coaching leaders, I thought it was time for another list. Argue, discuss, debunk, or perhaps make your own list for leaders.

These are in no particular order...

• It begins inside us
• We're not supposed to have all the answers
• Understand what we need and then ask what they need
• Bring our life to work so we can bring our work to life
• What got us here won’t get us there
• Reserve at least 30% of our time to help our team, group, department
• Our best work is ahead of us
• Internal customer service begins with us
• Leadership is verb
• Understand collaboration is keeping our mind open to others’ ideas and input
• We must make time for think time
• There are many I’s in team – inspire, insight, include, integrate, idea
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture Strategist, Writer, Speaker, Executive Coach engaging leaders to build successful talent and profitable business.

keaggy

June 7, 2013

Workplace Perspective

We live in an era where there could be four or five generations in your company. This creates an interesting tapestry of experience and viewpoints which can be both a challenge and an opportunity. Senior leadership could be in their 50's and 60’s while new recruits might be starting their career.

Older stakeholders may remember a time when we got our news from a paper and phones had to be hardwired into a wall while younger employees communicate and share through their mobile devices with ease. Junior associates may work quickly through the social web and shorthand texting while management who have been in the workforce for decades may want it to be the way it’s always been.

View From the Top

Some senior leaders experience difficulty keeping up with the velocity of today but often forget they were once the new stakeholders who were trying out the new channels and concepts of their day. We are seeing thousands of people retiring every day yet those numbers aren't being replaced in the younger demos at the same rate. This is creating a talent shortage and generational shift. Mitch Joel in his book Ctrl Alt Delete suggests we need to reboot our businesses and our lives depend on it.

When we speak with companies about their key issues, talent acquisition and retention are usually high on their list. They want the best and they want to keep the best. I’m sure you’re the same. But if we don’t grasp that our perspective is not the only one available, we can struggle with what other generations may want and need. But with ongoing education, we can help each other learn from each other.

Age and Perception

Culture can be demographic, geographic, or psychographic. It is the characteristics of a particular group of people, defined by everything from language, religion, cuisine, social habits, music and arts. And as leaders, we need to recognize the different standpoint within our organizations to tap into its greatest potential.

If we want to improve our companies, embracing and celebrating our differences can be well worth the effort.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

creativecow

June 5, 2013

Who Are You?

As we hit the halfway point of 2013, I thought I'd have a quick look at something we posted back on New Year's Day. Perhaps we're braver around year's end when lists and promises are everywhere. Here's the post for perspective.

Dr. Theodor Seuss Geisel was a clever yet shy raconteur who created timeless work. For example; "Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind."

It's one of my all-time favorite sayings and it's brilliant. It's not suggesting we disrespect those around us and for us to become unbearably arrogant. It points to the simple genius that says we need not worry so much about what others think about us. There will always be naysayers and complainers. You rarely need travel far to find someone with an opinion or criticism.

Don't Matter. Don't Mind.

Simon Sinek says leaders find others who believe in what they believe. Tom Peters says leadership is not about creating followers, it's about creating more leaders.

Seldom does someone who fails to stand for something, find others who are interested in what they have to say or offer. So be bold, be yourself and take charge. Respect those around you - most importantly yourself.

Be who you are, and say what you mean, or someone else may try and make that decision for you.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

ddtopyaps

June 3, 2013

What Could We Do Today?

Today we could worry less. Today we could recognize our goals are not their priority. Today we could exceed expectations.

Today we could stop making excuses. Today we could listen to our own opinion.

Today we could stretch a little more. Today we could make another phone call. Today we could not be so hard on ourselves. Today we could lead by example. Today we could create an open collaborative corporate culture.

Today we could not put it off until tomorrow. Today we could listen more. Today we could be the director of our own lives. Today we could stop blaming others.

Today we could stop worrying about what others think of us. Today we could help someone. Today we could let someone else's idea take the lead. Today we could let others have a voice.

Today we could take a step forward. Today we could not think too much. Today we could laugh at ourselves. Today we could understand this may take a while.

Today we could be less cautious. Today we could be open minded.

Today we could but that's up to us.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

istock

June 1, 2013

The Power of Wisdom

Sometimes silly, perhaps thoughtful, possibly useful, each morning I post a quick comment on Twitter.

Here are some highlights from May 2013.

The voice of doubt will try and derail you, ignore it. Bring your life to work so you can bring your work to life. A fantastic model of collaboration: thinking partners who aren't echo chambers - Margaret Heffernan.

May the fourth be with you. The heart of culture begins with you.

 Let's give our attention to good intentions and co-create great inventions.

To become really good, you need to live it and sleep it - Tony Hsieh (Zappos).Thank those who helped you get here. 

When was the last time you had a think day? Misunderstanding can often be an insider

Chocolate solves almost everything. Life can often be about enjoying the cast and not always understanding the plot. You are what you choose to be today, not what you've chosen to be before - Dr. Wayne Dyer.

"Always" or "never" are rarely either.
If you want your team to bring their best, bring your best.

If you want collaboration, first be open to others' point of view. Persons appear to us according to the light we throw upon them from our own minds - Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Your USP is you. Two key elements of customer service are service and customer. There are many I's in team - invite, imagine, include, ignite, involve.

The most powerful force ever known on this planet is human cooperation - Jonathan Haidt.

No regrets. It’s better to have a life full of what you like doing, than a life spent in a miserable way - Alan Watts.

The best day to start is yesterday. The second best is today. You may have five generations in your company; ensure you don't just listen to your voice.

Live in the moment and make mistakes. Einstein
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Kneale Mann | Leadership and Culture strategist, writer, speaker, executive coach engaging leaders, collaborative teams, and strong business results.

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