Differentiation

differentcolinoobpixabayDifferentiate: to become unlike or dissimilar; to change in character; to make a distinction.

Conformity alone is rewarded in many workplaces. The rewards, however, come at a price. Your conformity robs the world of your unique gifts and talents. How do you balance conformity and differentiation? A bit of each is necessary for your success and fulfillment.

Conformity has to do with knowing the realities of your work world and its expectations of you. Differentiation has to do with bringing your unique perspective to your work. It is an art to balance the two.

You can do it. Start with some experimentation. Bring your unique perspective to projects or issues you deal with in your work. See how it is received and which ideas are successful. There is room for many voices and, when they are heard, you discover the best solutions and approaches.

What new perspectives can you bring to your work today?

 

photo: ColiNOOB, pixabay.com

What’s Your Best Skill?

skillskeezepixabayIt is good to be self-aware and to know your strengths. What do you think is your best skill – communication and interpersonal relationships, leadership, specific technical or operating ability, sales, management, organizing?

When you know your strengths (and weaknesses) you can address your weaknesses and build on your strengths. It helps you set your career direction and to find the best fit for you.

 

photo: skeeze, pixabay.com

Every Day – A Challenge

challengepexelsIs there something you could do each day in August to create a positive transformation? What you do can be big or small, easy or difficult – what matters is that you transform an aspect of your life or work by taking one step toward the transformation every day this month.

You may, for example, want to be more organized in your work. Each day you could do something towards that aim – declutter, organize or change a perspective you have. By the end of the month, the result can be that you are there – much more organized than when you started the month. Or, you could focus on transforming your interrelationships at work, creating more balance in your life or building a specific skill.

Will you take this on? Vision the end of this month and how good you may feel having met this challenge. As you begin your challenge, feel free to e mail me and I will hold your intention and cheer you on. You can do this!

 

photo: pexels.com

What Tools Work Best For You?

PexelstoolsTools are devices you use to carry out functions efficiently. Tools aid you in getting things done. To succeed in your work, tools are essential. They supplement and enhance your own skills and capabilities. You must keep your tools sharp and in working order for them to be useful. Often, you have to adapt them to fit your needs and style.

Tools can range from apps that keep you organized, to methods to track projects and performance, to specific approaches to interviewing and hiring, for example. There are many places where tools are defined and recommended for you. One of my favorites is www.manager-tools.com.

What tools do you employ? What tools work best for you?

 

Photo: pexels.com

Manager Coaching Skills : Action Plans

actionjamolukpixabayCoaching meetings succeed when there is meaningful follow-through. Within a coaching meeting, you create a place of safety, focus and transparency. When your team member re-enters their everyday work life, structure and support are needed for results to manifest. An action plan is one way of providing that structure and support.

Action plans should suit the individual situation and be a formal agreement on how your team member will move forward on the items discussed in the coaching meeting. Goals and outcomes should be created collaboratively and fully agreed to by your team member. If there is a disciplinary or low performance issue involved, agreement is needed with the team member that they understand stretching their performance is necessary and the action plan gives them the opportunity to do so. Check-in meetings should be scheduled. As coach, you hold the goals and outcomes at all times. It’s best to not let time slip away, causing missed goals and outcomes.

When individual goals and outcomes are reached, acknowledgement and positive feedback should be given. Formal “closure” should be made when the action plan is completed. In the event of non-performance on the action plan, you can decide next steps.

Action plans are a great tool for clearly setting expectations, encouraging team members to grow and creating movement. Let action plans help fuel the development of your team.

 

photo: jamoluk, pixabay.com

Noticing

dreamstime_xs_50105419There are many ways people communicate that go beyond basic verbal communication. To be in tune with others, it is crucial to “notice” these other means of communicating. What are they? People communicate in many ways – with facial gestures, body language, tone of voice, choice of words, eye contact or lack of it, posture, touch and allowing or not allowing personal space. How often do you pay attention to another person’s non-verbal communication?

Over the next week, take some time to sharpen your ability to notice both your and others’ non-verbal communication. Try to discern what is being said beyond surface verbal communications. Noticing helps you increase your understanding of yourself and the people you interact with, resulting in better decisions, more effective communication and better managing.

 

photo: smarned, freedigitalphotos.net

Balancing Mind And Emotions When You Are Managing

ID-100273546Most people favor either their mind or their emotions over the other. It’s a matter of orientation, situation and preference. Do you favor your mind or your emotions when you are managing? I do not have to explain the difference in the two approaches. However, your choice (and it is a choice) does impact your managing style and results. The ideal approach is to balance your mind and emotions when managing.

Can you think of a time you were managing and favored your emotions? Can you think of another time you favored your mind? How did they work out? Were you in control or did they run away with you? Of prime importance, as a manager, is to use your mind and emotions with full awareness. They are great tools, but they need to be managed, too.

Balancing your mind and emotions when you are managing is a skill that will make you a better and happier manager.

I wrote another post on this subject a while back titled Balancing Mind And Emotions When You Fire Someone. You can find it here.

 

photo: Stuart Miles, FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Manager Coaching Skills: The Ability To Inspire

ID-100295019We all need inspiration, especially when we are stretching ourselves. Team members may come to coaching discouraged or unmotivated or daunted by what is expected of them. One very effective way to inspire is to lead by example. Show your team members that you are willing to do what it takes to excel and that they can too. Be a role model. Another way to inspire is to help individuals to see their strengths and the possibilities that lie before them. Show your faith in their ability to excel and face challenges. Inspire them by providing insights and suggesting strategies that help them move forward. Show your enthusiasm for their advancement.

Inspiration, by its very definition, makes someone want to do or create something they may not have considered before. Coaching is about advancement. Developing the ability to inspire is a win-win for both you and the team members that you coach.

 

photo: chatchai_stocker, FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Manager Coaching Skills: Getting Hooked

ID-100265536When you are coaching, “issues” are bound to come up. By issues, I mean topics that evoke emotions, anxieties, strong opinions and the like in the person you are coaching or yourself. When issues are introduced, you can get “hooked” by your own reactions to them. When this happens, you as coach have to maintain an objective presence and continue your coaching with a focus on the person you are coaching, not yourself. This can be a challenging thing to do.

Of highest importance is your level of self-awareness. You need to be able to discern very quickly when your own emotions start coming into play. If you feel yourself getting hooked in a coaching conversation, pull yourself back and regroup. Find ways to do this as quickly as you can. If you find you cannot, suggest a short break. Then, return to the coaching with your focus restored. After the coaching ends, you can deal with what happened. Getting hooked serves no one and damages your effectiveness as a coach.

 

photo: Stuart Miles, FreeDigitalPhotos.net