Monday, November 18, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Become a More Effective Leader




Tell them what you want,
reward them for giving it to you,
and get out of the way.
That’s my strategy in a nutshell.
--- Gordon Bethune, former CEO, Continental Airlines

In today’s economy, we employ ‘knowledge workers.’ They control the means of production – their knowledge. They become valuable by occupying a specialized niche of knowledge and developing it further than anyone else. You can’t do the same work your employees – the knowledge workers – can do any more than the art gallery owner can paint a masterpiece, or the NFL manager can run a football through a strong defense, or the hospital CEO can perform a heart transplant. Those tasks are the specialized functions of the artist, the running back and the surgeon. Yet you have to lead these people. Your role is to inspire them to achieve spectacular results, to standardize and measure those results, to let them know the score (e.g. who has brought in what results) and to reward those who have scored high. Write down a few ways of interacting with your team members that will bring out the unique creativity of each individual and inspire them to apply their ingenuity toward achieving your collective goals.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, November 11, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Build Meaningful Relationships



Strike when the iron is cold.
--- Harriet Lerner

If you are crossing the street, do you walk when there are a lot of cars speeding in front of you, or do you wait until they pass? Just as you wouldn’t cross a street if there were cars racing through it, don’t express how you feel when the other person has strong emotions of anger, irritation, insecurity, jealousy or fear racing through their body. Each emotional charge the other person feels is like a car. If you want to get your point across, wait until the coast is clear. Allow their strong emotions to pass. Once they do, they will be ready to hear you again; but not until then. If you have spent time in Hawaii, you know there are times when the waves are too rough to swim. Like the cars on a busy street, the waves are also like the other person’s negative emotions. Being authentic about how you feel is an attempt to get your needs met. When the other person is experiencing a strong negative emotion, they become disconnected from their authentic Self, defensive, and unwilling to meet your needs. Be patient. The waves will subside, and the ocean will become calm again. Then it will be a good time to go swimming. Be attentive this week to the emotions of the people around you. Use your good judgment and attunement to their emotional state to determine the right time to once again be assertive about what you need.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).

Monday, November 4, 2013

Smile, It’s Monday: Your Weekly Wake-up Call to Live the Life You Have Imagined




Passion gets you out of the starting gate,
but not across the finish line.

--- Anthony Silard

Passion alone is not enough to achieve our goals. We also have to be strategic. As I see it, there are three goals of work: to do good (create a social impact), do well (generate revenues that enable us to earn a decent livelihood and continue doing our work) and do right (treat our team members and customers with dignity and respect along the way). To achieve these three goals in the third millennium, we must recognize that we now live in a society rooted in the intersection of knowledge and passion. To survive and thrive, you must corner a specific niche of knowledge that has a high barrier to entry (i.e. that no one else has or can easily obtain) and utilize this knowledge to serve a strong customer need. Yet regurgitating knowledge alone doesn’t work; it must emanate from your heart and tap the reserve of passion within you. To get started, identify the critical needs of a customer group that won’t go away anytime soon. In other words, name their pain. Then ask yourself this question: “How can I serve their needs in a way that I am personally, deeply passionate about and that applies specific, nuanced knowledge that I and I alone possess?” Brainstorm a few ideas this week to reflect upon as you consider the direction you want to move your career in.

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Anthony Silard is the president of The Global Leadership Institute and the author of the Simon & Schuster book The Connection: Link Your Passion, Purpose, and Actions to Make a Difference in the World. To receive Smile, It's Monday each week in your inbox and a free copy of Anthony's new audio CD, "The Surprising Source of Your Passion", enter your email here (1-step only).