Lessons For Leaders From The Pandemic

Lesson for leaders from the pandemic

It was a privilege to be asked by a colleague and good friend of mine, Gary Ryan, to write and record the forward to his book “Disruption Leadership Matters – lessons for leaders from the pandemic”.

Gary’s book went on to become an Amazon Number #1 Best Seller on Kindle. I am sure many of the people in my People Empowered Community would be interesed in Gary’s book. I am forwarding you a copy of my Forward and the audio version of it. I hope it inspires you to buy Gary’s book in what ever version most resonates with you.

Read More

What Now After the Death of the Annual Performance Appraisal?

having performance conversations

Many organisations are not aware of the death of the annual performance appraisal. The main reason is that it no longer, if it ever did, produces the outcomes it sets for itself. There are still too many organisations using them to develop, enhance and assess the performance of their people. There is an alternative, moving from Performance Management to Performance Leadership. This is a move to on-going daily or weekly performance conversations that give feedback on the spot or certainly on a very regular basis, rather than the retrospective feedback that comes with an annual appraisal.

Read More

Take Your Foot Off the Brake – Create a New Story.

Create a New Story

How often do you look outside yourself for the reasons why you don’t achieve your goals and dreams? How often do you blame those external factors for obstructing your success, or for making it impossible?

It’s so much easier to do that than look inside yourself, to go down deep and discover what is crippling your spirit and your soul, what has stolen your drive to be fully who you can be. That takes you right outside your comfort zone. That is hard work.

You immortalise the story of your life and you hold on to it because it gives you a reason to stay stuck where you are. But it is only a story, to which you have given more weight and power than it actually has.Take your foot off the brake and create a new story for yourself.

Read More

Be Difference Makers and Put A Dent in the Universe

Be Difference Makers

This was an article I wrote 5 years ago and having re-read it recently I was surpised at how relevant it still is. Its message is particularly relevant in this new normal COVID world. It was Steve Jobs who famously said: “We are here to put a dent in the Universe”. To make sure, that when we do, our dent has our our unique name on it is a challenge. It’s an even bigger challenge to know what we need to do to put the dent there in the first place. This is what being Difference Makers is about. There are 6 attributes that make Difference Makers.

Read More

Mentoring A Low Performer Can Help Her Achieve Her Goal.

Mentoring a Low Performer

There are some universal themes and issues that keep coming up over and over in the work I do. Mentoring the low performer is one of these. It creates anxiety and fear into the heart of every leader and manager who feels they need to do it. But it doesn’t have to be that way as Mike’s experience shows.

This was a mentoring experience I had a number of years ago and last week (and many times in between)  I had almost the exact experience again so I recovered this post and revised it, knowing that it could be valuable for so many leaders and managers facing this situation.
In my workshops, I always offer the participants the opportunity to contact me after the workshop by email if they have any questions or want to discuss anything from the workshop.
This email I had from Mike was one of those situations. Both Mike (not his real name) and his employee have allowed me to tell this story and use it as a learning experience for others.
Rather than follow up by email, I actually phoned Mike to talk about this and made some suggestions for how he could handle it and about 12 months later when our paths crossed he gave me some feedback on what happened. I thought it was a good case study to present here.

Read More

Will Ageism Affect Your Professional Future?

Will Ageism Affect Your Professional Future

It can rear its threatening head as early as 50 and it’s certainly expressing itself loudly by 60. It can become like a ball and chain that stops us moving forward, or even moving at all. At least that is what the mentoring I do with this group of people tells me. Yes, I’m talking about ageism, that prejudicial and discriminatory belief system that stereotypes people on the basis of their age. It can happen at any stage of our lives, but my professional experience has been with people at the 50-70 + age bracket and that’s what I want to focus on here.

These are the people who are considered “too old”, with little to contribute to the future growth of their organisations. They are seen to be out of date, not “with it”. They do not represent the image that their organisation wants to portray to the world. They are often perceived to be at the end of their professional lives and therefore are not give opportunities for career or professional development. This last point I make is crucial to this discussion because many in this age bracket do rely too heavily on their decades of experience, their tried and true methods, systems and processes. They do not see the need to keep on learning and growing if they are to make a difference in this world where change and unpredictability are the only certainties.
But there is a growing number of people in their 60s becoming seniorpreneurs, who have refused to buy into the stereotype that is ageism.

Read More

Your Priorities are Important

Priority And Option

The fastest way to lose respect is to allow someone to be your priority while allowing yourself to be their option. It rings of neediness, even though we may think we are doing it to be helpful. Initially you may get accolades for being such a “good person”, so co-operative, great to have around, willing and able to do and be everything for everyone. It is unlikely, however, that this behaviour will take you from where you are to where you want to be. So what can you do about it? Become assertive.

Read More

Focus on Creating Habits rather than Setting Goals

Creating Habits rather than Setting Goals

It’s that time of the year again. It’s that time when we stop – sometimes not long enough – to think about the ways we want this new year to look different from the last one. We usually think about setting goals that we want to achieve by December 31, 2022. I want to set you thinking in a different direction. I want to suggest that creating habits is much more effective and productive than setting goals.

There is plenty of anecdotal and researched evidence that tells us that most people abandon the goals they set within a very short time of making them. Life gets in the way and we revert back to the people we were last year, doing things the way we did them then. Why does this happen?

If we keep doing what we are doing,
we will keep getting what we are getting.

Read More

Being Skilled at Setting Priorities is More Important than Time Management Skills.

Prioritise Your Life

This is a message worth repeating. I have found in my mentoring that when stress and overwhelm take control of leaders’ lives, they tend to automatically think that the way to manage it is to develop better time management skills. That’s my experience with leaders who come to me for help. The way through, however, is about being very skilled at setting priorities.

But this requires leaders to have a clear mind and that is not possible when they are stressed and overwhelmed and attempt to set priorities on the fly. This is why the first step they need to take is to Stop, Step Back and Recharge . That recharged space is not just for relaxing and reducing the stress, it is also about reflecting on what kind of leader they want to be. When they have the answer to that they will then be able to better discern their priorities, aligning them with who they want to BE as a leader, not just with all the things they need to DO as a leader. Here are 3 guidelines for your consideration in setting your priorities.

Read More

How the Super Busy Leader Can Recharge by Half-Stopping

Recharge space

Half-stopping – have you ever heard of that as a way for super busy leaders to recharge? I hadn’t. Be inspired then by David Rock’s “Half-Time August”. As a super busy USA leader he says he cannot take a fortnight’s holiday without being very stressed before hand and afterwards. He can, however, take a month’s holiday with his family and work half-time. For all you leaders in the Southern Hemisphere, this is your “Half-Time January”. David solves the super busy leader’s dilemma of not being able to stop work, as well as the work-life integration dilemma. He goes off with his family for a month – works half time and spends the other half with his family. He will often work 2-3 days and then takes long week-ends of 3-4 days when he does no work. Or he works half days and then spends the rest of the day with family.

Read More