September 27, 2013

Learn, Lead, Share, Repeat

Leadership is a complex and iterative journey. It would be simple to look back at when you got a raise or promotion or that first big client as moments of growth. But when you look deeper, it's often before and after those events where you can see the change.

Since we aren't machines nor are our co-workers and fellow stakeholders, we need to keep a keen eye on human elements and interaction. So if we pause for moment and look at those times in our career where we felt hampered perhaps in a restricted environment, were those possible learning opportunities or obstacles?

Two-Way Leader

If you feel you need to be strong, even when you aren't sure, then you may be setting yourself up for future problems. If you think you may appear weak if you need help, trouble may be imminent.

Life can be an overwhelming place at times and none of us get through it without challenges. There is often little allowance to pause when the pressures of the day need our attention. But we need to keep trying to find think time to grow. And asking for help is a sign of strength. None of us has all the answers.

Ask someone on your team for help. Be open to their ideas and experience. The results may surprise you.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

istock

September 24, 2013

Do You Enjoy Your Work?

Millions of employee surveys have been conducted in our time on this planet.  The usual issues come up in every one – our compensation, ability to advance, appreciated talents, and purpose realized. The interesting discovery in most studies is that someone's salary is usually not the source of their biggest grievances.

I'm sure you know someone (I hope it’s not you!) who is unhappy at work. It could be the work, but it’s quite often the stuff around the work – leadership, culture, people, collaboration, communication, and other human elements. Malcolm Gladwell in Outliers writes; “Hard work is a prison sentence only if it does not have meaning.”

Dan Arielya professor of psychology and behavioral economicsexplains some of the elements that make people happy or unhappy at work.


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

TED | Dan Ariely

September 20, 2013

Taking Our Own Advice

I've run into more and more people suffering the fate of the cobbler. Something we all have to manage. It's the story of the shoemaker who works hard but has no time to make shoes for his own children.

It's also the story of us. It's the story of how we feel the need to constantly keep up, have more meetings, be on more channels, do more stuff, tweet, meet, check email, and keep busy busy. One hundred years ago, there was the same number of hours in the calendar week yet we foolishly think we can cram more into it and still be efficient.

Take a Number

Customers were waiting for their orders so the cobbler will have to wait until tomorrow to fix his children's tattered boots. There's a meeting at 10 that conflicts with a conference call at 10:30, but you can't move it to 11 because there's a client coming in, so your 1:30 will have to be changed to tomorrow because the boss is going over every single client file which will take well over three hours to resolve nothing. But you answer four more emails on your way to grab a coffee before the meeting.

The shoemaker has one more order then he may finally make a pair for himself this time. But the familiar bell rings on the shop front door and those shoes will have to wait. You know indistinctly those meetings could be half as long to give you more time to help your team and clear your head yet you go headlong into another day full of them.

Maybe there will be time tomorrow.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

timesunion

September 17, 2013

Change: It Looks Great on a T-Shirt

Change is a concept that seems to drive us, win elections and create stress. We hear the word and feel two immediate and visceral responses: things will improve for us and everyone will need to change but us. We think change will bring about success but it may also bring uncertainty.

Change Cannot Be Measured

You can’t grab yourself a nice cold refreshing tall glass of change. Your closet cannot be filled with long sleeved hand sewn change. Driving to your next appointment won’t happen in the comforts of your brand new two-door Change. But we love the idea of it, the non-committal nature of talking about it. "They need to change." "We need to bring about change." "Change is gonna come." It all sounds good.

To most, change is about control and standing still while others make the shift. You may be one who thrives on change but be careful when you want to instil it on others. They too may like the theory but will define it to fit their own convenience.  And who among us admits to be part of the problem?

Cause and Effect

If we eat cheeseburgers and sit on the couch, there is a pretty good scientific chance we will gain weight. If we work hard and focus on our goals, there is a better chance of success than tweeting all day about being busy. Complaining about the current state verses accepting responsibility and offering solutions may slow down our progress and goals as well.

We want things to change but often under our rules and our guidelines. And whenever you include anything or anyone outside of your own mind, the grip must be loosened or collaboration becomes a challenge.

Moving change from concept to reality is the tough part.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

callcentrehelper

September 12, 2013

Lead Through Doodling

It begins before we can speak and, in some cases, continues for life. People do it in public, in private, at meetings, in airports, at family gatherings, or any other place where a writing implement can be found. Great ideas are discovered through it, strategic plans are mapped out by it, businesses have been created from it.

Sunni Brown is the leader of the Doodle Revolution. In her TEDTalk, Sunni explains why we must continue to doodle.

You may need some paper and a pen.


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

Sunni Brown | TED

September 11, 2013

12 Years Since

12 years since that crisp blue Tuesday morning sky was shattered. 12 years since confusion commenced while anger and fear increased.

12 years since terrorists cut almost 3,000 lives short and injured 6,000. 12 years since, there have been many tragedies, wars, victims, and death.

12 years since we remember where we were that fateful day. 12 years since we vowed we would be kinder and gentler to each other. 12 years since we were reminded of the fragility of life and to live every last moment.

12 years since, there have been many happy moments, great victories, and incredible advancements. 12 years since we promised to be better to each other.

12 years since, let's keep that promise.
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Kneale Mann

September 11 Memorial

September 9, 2013

Let's Go For Coffee

Wanna get together for coffee? How about we meet for coffee? Let's book coffee some time. Where are we meeting for coffee? We know it's about much more than coffee.

Steven Johnson explains.


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

Steven Johnson | TED

September 6, 2013

Put the Phone Away

Marketers will tell you all about the overwhelming metrics on cell use. Conservative estimates say we will have more activated mobile devices this year than people living on the planet. We are using them to do just about everything in our lives and the time we spend on them increases with every passing day.

We’re in meetings sitting right beside each other mesmerized by that little screen in our hands. We’re checking email at stop lights. We’re ensuring we didn't miss something while we wait for our flight. Look around a public place and count the number of people not on their device. They are the endangered species.

I was having lunch with a client recently and he just about lost his mind because he forgot his phone at the office. And we wonder why we have disengaged employees, connections, and relationships. We're vacant in a connected world.

Charlene deGuzman forgot her phone and discovered something interesting.


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

Charlene deGuzman

September 4, 2013

Too Busy to Get it Done

You are a busy person doing busy things. After all, the job description said you would have to work independently in a fast paced environment handling many duties at once with a calm demeanour. Emails come at you all day and you’re expected to respond to that urgent text you received last night at 9:37 during your one hour of television this week void of interruptions. The promise of a paperless world with a four-day work week has been replaced with much busyness and still no jet packs.

There are meetings and deliverables, research and decisions. And when you get a moment, you check on your social streams. You haven't tweeted in well over an hour and people may have commented on that article you shared on Google+. Your friends on Facebook want your thoughts on the best sushi in town and there hasn't been a fresh blog post on your site in almost two whole days.

Here's Where We Get into Trouble

We are so afraid to miss something we tend to skim over everything. You're probably doing it with this post. Our lives are 140 characters or acronyms on the smartphone. It's okay, they're busy too and we added that semi-colon and a closed parenthesis so they know we're kidding, right?

In your quest to stay on top of everything, shortcuts are taken and suddenly a friend contacts you through one of the eleven ways they can and mentions that your last response seemed a bit dismissive. Suddenly a dozen messages back and forth could have be more enjoyable and far less misunderstood with a phone call. Or perhaps we have strapped on the suit called busy because it's what others think we should.

A Mile Wide and an Inch Deep

There is certainly no time to have a meaningful conversation, we are far too busy for that. And we wouldn't dare show up for that dinner engagement without our mobile device so we can check it half a dozen times before the appetizers arrive.

Business Week recently published a study stating that only 38% of people can make effective decisions today due to the overwhelming amount of data which is increasing at a rate of 60% a year. It may be time for us to have less meetings, put our phones away, and have more meaningful interaction.

Or perhaps we're too busy for that.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

fototastic

September 1, 2013

Thirty-One and Counting

It’s a daily thing that started a couple of years ago. Each morning on Twitter, I post a thought or quip, idea or quote, comment or idea that strikes me.

Here are some of the highlights from August 2013

Heavy givers are light complainers. You were born to lead in your own way.

The best time to start is that place between tomorrow and yesterday.

Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.
Corrie Ten Boom

You have all you need to succeed if you look hard enough.
If it doesn't help you grow, get rid of it. 

The past has passed. Life begins at the end of your comfort zone. Neale Walsh

The choice is yours. You will never get it perfect and that's okay.
Self praise is no recommendation.

There are people in your life right now ready to help you if you ask.

Most of our assumptions have outlived their uselessness.
Marshall McLuhan


Don't give naysayers their audience they crave.
That idea you keep putting on hold is ready to ship.

No one can make you feel inferior without your consent.
Eleanor Roosevelt


Life is an experience in progress.

If you raise the bar, your top performers will soar.
If you lower the bar, they will leave.

If you want something you've never had, you must be willing to do something you've never done. Thomas Jefferson

Pick five people you connect with online. Give them each a call.

Once you make a decision, the universe conspires to make it happen.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Know-it-alls usually know a lot less than all. Success is a decision. If you're sorry you didn't take a chance in the past, don't repeat history today.

What obstacle will you remove today? Learn from a child.

You need to be the one who will create the change you need.
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Kneale Mann | Leadership Strategist, consultant, writer, speaker, executive coach facilitating performance growth with leaders, management, and teams.

timeninja
 
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