Why Energy Makes a Difference

When I served as a leader, it was the more challenging times that reminded me how vital were the contributions of our people in sustaining the business. It was evident after 9-11 when our business slowed dramatically and Steve volunteered to remain on site after hours to support a customer in crisis several times zones away. Or, while serving with a different organization, I discovered that Marilyn had invested her own time, after already working a …

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3 Team Characteristics That Drive Change

Successfully tackling change initiatives is most often due to these team characteristics than it is to the types of individuals on the team: Accountability: Team members are comfortable taking risks; the team relies on its leader for support and on each other to act with urgency, commitment and thoroughness.  Clarity: Team roles, goals, and implementation plans are clearly documented and understood.  Impact: The project goals are personally important for each team member; they feel valued and believe that their efforts will make a difference for customers …

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Considering Problems and Opportunities

There are always problems – a parade of challenges that command your attention. Systems are down, people or organizations are working against you, or there’s a compelling difficulty without a resolution.  There are always opportunities – innovative ideas or new relationships waiting to be embraced. These are chances to create value, to share or give, to move faster or make something better.  And there are always limits – limited time, energy, money and other resources.  Where do you …

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Two Paths for Accountability

The recent celebration of our nation’s birthday prompts reflection about our distinctive idea of individual freedom, and our persistent pursuit of the aspirational vision and values so perfectly expressed in our founding documents. During our journey, we’ve celebrated achievements and suffered failures, but we persevere, continuing to experiment, to learn, to evolve and to improve as we strive to fulfill the promises that sustain our unprecedented liberty.  Being a free people, we have the option of choosing, …

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Two Points That Make Performance Discussions Matter

Bob Schultek Author of The Gauntlet With the year-end approaching, ’tis the season of performance evaluations. Some organizations have abandoned the regimen of formal performance discussions, while others preserve a review process, often replacing annual discussions with quarterly or semi-annual ones. Opinions and rationales vary about the value of these individual assessments. But in this age of perpetual change, with its organizational demands for greater agility, innovation and improvement, the case for observing some performance management protocol is …

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3 Questions About Choosing to Follow

Bob Schultek Author of The Gauntlet rschultek@staging.elfin-bead.flywheelsites.com 216-272-4449     People act in their own best interest. Before choosing to follow your lead, your team will assess your credibility (are you genuine?) and your intentions (why should I follow you?), asking themselves these 3 questions: 1. “Can you help me?” The number one reason that people choose to follow is because the leader is credible. More than vision, or communication skills, or other effective leadership characteristics, people need to believe that a leader has the credibility …

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Going First

Bob Schultek Author of The Gauntlet Credibility is the number one reason people choose to follow their leaders. That credibility is based on the leader’s behaviors, transparency and accountability. How they walk the talk, keep promises, lead from the front. To build a vibrant organizational culture, leaders must go first. They are the first to make sacrifices, the first to take risks, and the first to feel consequences. They are the first to model the company’s values, first …

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Leaders Enable Team Success

Bob Schultek Author of The Gauntlet Leaders want their people to succeed; success lifts the person and the leader. Leaders cannot succeed if those they lead fail. The most effective leaders invest significant time engaging and coaching their people. Exceptional leaders appreciate that empathy and emotional intelligence, paired with experience and intellect, enable them to engage and collaborate with their employees such that those they lead gain awareness about how each person makes a difference. This truth is what …

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3 Questions People Ask About You

Bob Schultek rschultek@staging.elfin-bead.flywheelsites.com 216-272-4449     People take action because it benefits them. If you’re a leader or a salesperson trying to connect with others, your focus must be on them. It’s a simple truth that is often forgotten. Your target audience will ask themselves 3 questions to discover your intentions: 1. “Do you care about me?” Mutual interest is the impetus for establishing a connection. Trying to learn another person’s perspective regarding a shared goal or concern …

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Building Initiative Momentum

Leaders typically encourage their personnel to demonstrate initiative. They need processes to be improved, problems to be solved and changes to be implemented, which can only occur when their teams are willing to invest additional time and discretionary effort. How do you encourage initiative? How do you overcome reluctance to propose a new idea or method? How do you inspire discretionary effort? Most employees want new challenges; it increases the meaningfulness of their work and …

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