Category Archives: Leadership

Ask Me Nicely

We all need a favor from time to time. How often are we so paralyzed by the fears of perceived failure that we choose to pursue the outcome we require via conflict rather than collaboration. When you need a favor from a colleague, do you find yourself bullying them to get your way? Or do you argue for your position’s superiority to theirs?

Why not start by searching for that win-win? and when what isn’t readily available and it is going to have to be a ‘your loss – my gain’ why not frame it as a favor, always prefaced with a “PLEASE”.

It all comes around folks.

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Curious outcomes and questionable decisions – What’s the REAL reason?

Have you ever been in a situation where you anticipated a certain outcome or reaction from an individual and experienced quite another? If you were pleasantly surprised, perhaps you smiled then shrugged and never gave it another thought. If you were disappointed, perhaps you furrowed your brow, then puffed up, then stewed over the terrible personal injustice you just suffered for months.

Sound familiar?

Let’s assume that you had (somewhat) carefully analyzed the situation before reaching your expected outcome. All things being equal, you missed something. Conspiracy theorists run-wild, there is still a factor which was misjudged or missed entirely. The question is rarely apparent, and occasionally not even fully known by the second party. However, the starting point for analysis must be inward.

What was it about your approach to the situation that set the stage for the response you received? Was it your tone, posture or attire? Was it the words you chose? Did your biases influence your evaluation of the known factors in analyzing their position (rather, did you undervalue or dismiss factors important to the second party due to your own position). In careful analysis or post analysis it is critical that not only do you consider all factors possible, but that you unburden your evaluation of your own perspective to reach an accurate assessment of their position.

Finally, when things don’t go your way and you may never know why, don’t take it personal. If Michael Jordan fabricated imagined grudges against opponents to summon deep seeded vendetta driven motivation, than you can do the opposite. This person doesn’t hate me; they actually are just having a rough time at home. Or this person doesn’t hate me; they just have a sore back today and are grump as hell.

These may not be true, but if you will never know the origins and have completed your unbiased analysis, rather than letting your conspiracy-theory-devil-inside run amuck with your self-confidence, imagine an external influence beyond your control ( a hypothetical scapegoat ) and move on. Some days just aren’t your days.

Not only is everyone Watching – everyone is also Talking

I have blogged about this before, but I wanted to put a small twist on it. Within your office and your regional business community, as a leader, not only is everyone watching what you do and say, they are also telling their colleagues. Count on it.

Good, Bad, or Indifferent. Your reputation is out there. It may go viral on social media and it may come back to you locally due to your online brand, but never forget that what you do and what you say is seen and repeated every day in the office. The question can then be asked, should you care?

Of course you should care, but how to concern yourself with the goings on of others without it paralyzing your true nature and muting your true value? For me, it is a delicate balance between keeping a healthy respect for the title of this blog while acting and looking the part at all times. That’s where the over analysis ends.

I know everyone is watching and telling their friends. I can’t change that. What I can do is walk the walk every minute of every day. What you see is what you get and I care what you get. If you are honest in your presentation, fair in your statements and judgments people will respect that. Outliers be damned. So make sure you can look yourself square in the eye every morning and every night and know that you were honest and did your best.

Bring your “A” game every day. Period. People are going to say what they are going to say.