April 29, 2016

Are You Fearless?

There are plenty of data to show we admire people who take chances as well as create and share new ideas. Work and business can often get in the way of great ideas, collaborative culture, and true leadership. The creation of meaningful experiences is often replaced by fear and inaction.

The intersection of people and business require relationships and the key ingredient is desire. Sir John Hegarty succinctly sums up the importance of culture and creativity.

Watch this with your team.


April 26, 2016

Creating Urgency

We clever humans have tried to fool, cajole, and urge each other to buy things since we showed up on this dust bowl called Earth. Limited time offer, we only have three left on the lot, the sale ends Thursday, one-time exclusive, once in a lifetime opportunity, the list goes on. We try to get each other's attention through the tactic of scarcity.

Our collective busy never seems to subside. We're constantly checking our mobile devices, refreshing the page, ensuring there are no new emails, and all the while our lives are flying by at the speed of that new mobile device that can send presentations to Japan in three seconds.

Slow down

Perhaps it's age; maybe perspective, but I feel myself slowing down. My work ethic hasn't waned; my desire to learn new things hasn't subsided; but a quiet Saturday morning with coffee and music is now just as - if not more - important than answering another email.

To say the world is a busier place today than it was even few years ago in some ways may be a safe assessment. All you need to do is walk through an major airport around 7 on any Monday morning and you can see the mayhem that is business travel. But the lingering question remains as we check our mobile devices at traffic lights and push our way to the connecting flight...

Are we actually getting any more done?

April 24, 2016

Measuring Your LIfe

How do you measure your worth? What metrics do you apply to your experience? Where do you see your value? David Brooks poses an important question. Do we measure ourselves by what we do or who we are?

Watch this.


April 21, 2016

Do As You're Told!

I once worked for a "boss" who felt compelled to remind people his title and raised his voice every time he didn't get his way like a five year old who can't have ice cream. Perhaps you've met this guy.

A lot is written and said about the power of human connection but we need to mean it and dig deep on it and live it and embrace it for real. No stakeholder will believe a well-crafted mission statement that says people are important if it’s not proven through action. You can’t pretend to care simply to get someone to do their job. Yelling guy did't care about us.

The human network is more vital than ever before. 

If you have kids, you have experienced a time when they defied you, acted up against your direction or disobeyed you. Discipline can be a justified response but what is the real issue going on? In the enterprise, if an employee has a temper tantrum, they are often reprimanded and sometimes dismissed. It’s not tolerated. But why is it endured when "the boss" flips out?

Your team does not want a boss. They don’t want to fear you. They don’t want to walk on egg shells around you. They need you to lead and help them grow. People will mess up, because they are people just like you. Your team will make mistakes, just like you. Your company will have challenges, just like you.

Your job title might be on the org chart and your email signature but if you feel compelled to remind your team what it is,,,

You've lost the room.

April 19, 2016

31 Ideas That Can Change Your Life

Embrace there are many things you don't know. Focus on your strengths. Help something without their knowledge. Teach others. Waste no time with naysayers. Skip email for a day. Build a mastermind group. Take time for you.

Let others make time to them. Be known for something. Take your vacation. Collaborate. Surround yourself with people smarter than you.

Adopt an open-mind policy. Be true to you. Let your team take credit. Communication consistently. Say thank-you often. Learn from others. Identify specifically what you want. Don't compare yourself to others. Turn off your phone. Spend a day by yourself.

Believe in you. Do what you say you will do. Recognize the efforts of everyone on your team. Disconnect at least once a day. Don't pull rank. Take one think day every month. Pay it forward. Read and seek knowledge daily.

April 15, 2016

The Human View

The topic of what makes a great leader has been debated forever. When you think of the values a mentor has brought to you, it’s often those intangible aspects which are more difficult to define.

In business, it's tough to be thrown into a new role when you may be good at the work but not as well versed at the people part. It's easy to point to those who have handled leadership with grace but it's not a skill you learn in short order. And it can certainly be a balancing act when the organization continually reminds you profit is the goal.

Fear can be why strong leadership is often as rare as great customer service. The five C's can help...

Communicate - To impart knowledge or to make known.
Collaborate - To work and learn with another.
Cooperate - To act together for a common purpose or benefit.
Considerate - To show awareness or regard for another's feelings.
Compassionate - To have a feeling of sympathy for another.

Without human elements, your results will remain a mystery.

April 12, 2016

Do You Ever Feel Vulnerable?

Dr. Brené Brown, a research professor at the University of Houston has been studying a topic most of us have trouble discussing - vulnerability. It appears in many forms; imposer syndrome, feeling inadequate, feeling like a fake, not knowing the answer, etc.

We all have moments when we feel emotionally weakened.

Dr. Brown explains how it affects all aspects of our lives while being authentic can help those same areas.


April 8, 2016

Gadgets v People

We live in a plug-in-play world. The gadget comes with an instructional manual but few of us take the time to read it. Our collective impatience is too strong. We want to open the box and start using it. If there’s a problem, we’ll call someone or research the answer online. But what do we do when we can’t figure out how people work?

There is no owner’s manual with human interaction and relationships. Decades of experience can only give us a guide but each person is wired and motivated differently. We can’t simply apply one rule for all yet often the business world tries to do just that.

Leadership is Complex

If you have kids, you may have taught them how to ride a bike. At first, you put on training wheels, and then over time you raised them off the ground so your child could slowly learn how to balance.

Then the day came when the training wheels were removed. You may have stood nervously as they started to pedal off without your help or the help of two extra wheels. That’s trust in them, the system, and yourself. You gave them the tools but eventually had to let them find their way.

Without investing time in people's motivation, we may never know how the gadget works.

April 4, 2016

Be Human. The End.

There are over seven billion of us on this planet, over two billion online, and the noise is unbearable most days. Look at this, click on that, check my offer, attend this event, go to that store, read this article, buy that cool gadget, the list is endless. Then we're expected to share it, text it, tweet it, connect it, friend it, email it, or blog it.

The cries for attention seem unrelenting and perhaps as we have trained ourselves to sift through endless data, content, and advertising, we have forgotten ourselves? But it would be good to think we take more care with our relationships and careers. This creates strong bonds, great friendships, and successful companies.

Culture Matters

Leadership and culture are not job titles and your team is not a group of robots carrying out mindless tasks to grow the revenue for your shareholders. Like you, they have dreams and goals and a need for more meaning and passion in their work.

If you focus on the meaning of your business, significance of your people, and importance of creating a collaborative culture, the focus on revenue will no longer get in the way of creating all of your goals.

Daily Care

If you feel yourself wanting more on a deeper level, it’s safe to say so does every person you work with, every partner you do business with, and every connection. In a busy world with too much going on, keeping relationships our biggest priority will serve us well. Letting the distractions replace the interactions is dangerous.

If you understand that everyone around you is not too different than you, have a need to belong like you, and want contribute and be a part of something like you, that will go a long way. As a leader, be human.

Your team will thank you.
© Kneale Mann knealemann@gmail.com people + priority = profit
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leadership development business culture talent development human capital