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Category: teams

Want Your Best Employees to Never Leave You? Give Them the 7 Things They Need the Most

Filed under: company culture, Leadership, teams

In the quest to crack the code on employee engagement, companies spend hundreds of thousands of dollars each year on wasted efforts to “develop their leaders.”

Since leadership development is broad, it needs to be clearly defined for business outcomes. The common denominator is teaching managers the fine art of people skills. After all, leading an organization is still mostly about people — its most important asset. Without mastering people skills, you simply cannot be a good leader.

But to do that, managers must have a basic understanding of human behavior. What science has already found is that positive emotions are at the root of human motivation. We are wired for it in our creation design.

Therefore, managers must acquire the knowledge of what makes people tick and what inspires human beings to perform at a high level.

1. People at work need to feel safe.
This is true especially as they start a new role or job. They need confidence boosters from their leaders. Emotionally intelligent leaders will build them up through encouragement, praise, and positive affirmation. They will show them hope for the future, ask them about their goals and interests, and give them assurance of a career path. Safety is a basic human need and the best employees want to know where they stand — now and in the future. The best leaders give them that hope by speaking to their needs.

2. People at work need compliments.
“I don’t like to be recognized,” said no human being, ever. Managers have to get into the habit of praising and complimenting their people for their good qualities and work. The companies in Gallup’s study with the highest engagement levels use recognition and praise as a powerful motivator to get their commitment. They found that employees who receive it on a regular basis increase their individual productivity, receive higher loyalty and satisfaction scores from customers, and are more likely to stay with their organization. How regular are we talking? Praise should be given once per week, according to Gallup.

Continue reading on Inc. >>

What Entrepreneurs can Learn About Brainstorming from TV Writers

Filed under: Communication, Productivity, teams

Wendy Calhoun is a veteran TV writer, who has worked on hit shows including Empire, Justified, and Nashville. Which sounds like a fun gig, but why did she recently spend time talking to Google employees at the company’s re:Work 2016 event?

Because, as Calhoun makes plain in the first minutes of her Google presentation, writing for TV these days isn’t the lonely pursuit many of the uninitiated expect it to be. Rather than hunkering down alone with a computer, their own creativity, and endless cups of coffee, TV writers mostly spend their days hammering out ideas in collaboration with others in a writers’ room.

And from this deep experience with creative collaboration (as well as diverse, and probably occasionally difficult) personalities, Calhoun and TV writers like her have become world-class experts on the finer points of creative teamwork and effective brainstorming. At the Google event, she shared several of her top lessons for any group trying to come up with better ideas, including these.

1. Warm up.
Just like athletes, creative minds can’t just go from stock still to top speed in seconds. They need to gradually warm up to reach their full capabilities. Different creative teams use different techniques, but Calhoun insists that, if you want to get the best from your people, you should kick things off with a fun activity that flexes their innovation muscles in a fun way.

Click here to read the rest on Inc. >> 

9 Players You Need on Your Management Dream Team

Filed under: Decision Making, Leadership, Relationships, Strategy, teams

I’d like to believe that over the course of 20 years, my co-founder and I have done a fairly competent job of building a senior management dream team.

In doing so, we’ve borrowed liberally from the vernacular of baseball, track, football and basketball to define and describe the exact qualities and characteristics we sought in building the team. Here are the players I think you’ll need to win the next Super Bowl.

1. The five-skill player

In baseball, a five-tool player is someone who can run, throw, field, hit and hit with power. In my business, PR, a five-skill player can attract new business, deepen existing client relationships, help set the agency’s strategic vision, write, and edit.

2. The rabbit

In group track-and-field events, every team needs a rabbit. The rabbit is the person who sets an incredibly fast pace early in the race. She forces the real stars to keep up, enables them to finish strong and, hopefully, set a new world’s record in the process. She’ll constantly be smiling-and-dialing, attending conferences, brunching with prospects and, in short, doing everything in her power to speed up the business development process.

Click here to read the rest on Inc. >>

Are You Really a Good Team Player?

Filed under: Attitude, Behavior in the Workplace, Good Habits, Professional Development, Relationships, teams

“Are you a good team player?” I’m sure you’ve been asked that question in an interview before, and it’s highly likely you’ve posed it to someone else too. It has truly become one of those commonplace questions where the response “yes I am” is often delivered, as if on autopilot.

Rating oneself as an effective collaborator shouldn’t be taken lightly. This is because if you meet an interviewer or manager like me, you’re going to be challenged for proof as to why you believe you are. I’m going to dig for evidence.

So where does this evidence come from?

Funnily enough, it often comes from experiencing a dysfunctional team scenario. Whether it’s working in an environment rife with negative internal politics, perpetual personal show-boating or personality clashes, whatever the scenario, if you can articulate or demonstrate your ability to set aside personal differences to achieve a collective goal, you’ve got my attention.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

Top 5 Reasons Employees Love Their Boss – and How to Be More Loved

Filed under: Behavior in the Workplace, Good Habits, Happiness, Leadership and Management, teams

According to a study from Gallup, fully half of all employees in the U.S. have left a job because of problems with their manager.

That means that being a great boss — a likeable, even loveable boss — isn’t just about being popular or being “nice.” Rather, it’s a retention issue.

Improving your skills as a manager should be as important a part of your job as helping your employees improve their skills. If you’re ready to become everybody’s favorite boss, try adding these skills to your repertoire:

  1. Consistent and meaningful communication.

The number 1 problem people cite with their bosses and managers is a lack of communication. If you can improve your communication skills and create a culture of open communication with your team, you will go a long way to improving your relationship with your employees. Most important, people want clear expectations and updates when it comes to what’s expected of them.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>

Can You Be Ambitious AND A Team Player?

Filed under: ambition, Behavior in the Workplace, Career Advice, teams

Any manager or chief executive will tell you that the key to success in business is the people you have working for you. I have said before that ambitious firms will look to attract like-minded individuals, and if you have people like this on your staff then your business will benefit.

But it also stands to reason that if you really want to be working at your full potential you need to have your staff all pulling in the same direction. Teamwork is an essential ingredient in the recipe for success and it is the job of a good manager to foster and build that sense of unity.

If you’re looking to take on bright, driven and ambitious people then there is an argument that what you are effectively is doing is creating problems for yourself as a manager. By its very nature, ambition can lead to competition and people putting themselves first. However competition isn’t necessarily a bad thing, and sometimes setting targets and challenges can be a great motivator.

Click here to read the rest on LinkedIn >>