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Once & For All: Stopping Sexual Harassment at Work

Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

Team Empowerment Basics

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Empowering EmployeesEmpowerment is different from delegation. Delegation is entrusting a task to a team while still retaining all the decision making control. Empowerment, however, requires that a certain amount of responsibility and decision making capability is vested in the team. Assigning responsibility implies confidence in the team and confidence in its ability to take certain decisions on its own. It gives the team the independence to formulate an action plan and then implement that plan.

Empowered teams can work in several situations; here are some examples of a few:

Empowered product marketing teams are able to come up with ideas that help create better products and services in line with customer expectations.
Empowered teams in the services sector can help to bring about greater customer satisfaction and retention levels.
Empowered sales teams are better at achieving their targets and forming long-term partnerships with clients.
Let’s look at an example of a customer services team at a hotel: (more…)

6 Ways to Empower Your Employees

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

The term “empowerment” rose to prominence in the late 1980s and saw considerable use through the 1990s in conjunctionEmpowering Your Employees with the total quality management (TQM) movement. Its use has been so widespread that the term itself has become a buzzword. We’re told repeatedly that we must empower employees to enable them to make their best possible contributions to organizational success; we’re told this as though it were something new, some late-twentieth-century discovery.

The verb “empower” contains its own simple definition: to give power to. A look into any dictionary or thesaurus reveals that one of the several synonyms for “empowerment” is “delegation.” A similar look at “delegation” shows “empowerment” as a synonym. Delegation and empowerment have essentially the same meaning, yet many present day experts tell us: Don’t just delegate to employees–empower them.

Although empowerment may be described in a variety of ways, its essence remains giving employees control of their jobs and letting them make their own decisions and solve their own problems. Therefore, there’s no difference between empowerment and proper delegation. Therein lies the problem; delegation has been so widely misused and abused that the term itself has become hopelessly tarnished. The conscientious delegating manager—or honest empowering manager—clearly defines employees’ limits and keeps hands off as long as they operate within these limits and deliver the expected results.

(more…)

Communicating the Vision

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

A leader’s vision isn’t worth much if it doesn’t take hold in the organization. And it won’t go far without effective communication. A vision describes some achievement or future state that the organization will accomplish or realize. A vision has to be shared in order to do what it is meant to do: inspire, clarify and focus the work.

“Part of your job as a leader is to generate commitment to your organization’s vision. To do this, you have to communicate the vision in a way that matters to people,” says Talula Cartwright, co-author of Communicating Your Vision (Center for Creative Leadership, 2006). “Communicating a vision is like making a sales pitch,” explains Cartwright. “You want people in the organization to believe the vision and to pass it on to others.” Leaders need to get the word out about the organization’s vision in multiple ways – and keep the message going. Tactics to consider include:

Stories. When you tell a good story, you give life to a vision. The telling of stories creates trust, captures hearts and minds, and serves as a reminder of the vision. Plus, people find it easier to repeat a story than talk about a vision statement.

The elevator speech. Every leader needs to be able to communicate the vision in a clear, brief way. What compelling vision can you describe in the amount of time you have during a typical elevator ride? Be prepared to reinforce the vision in line at the cafeteria, when you visit the customer service department, and even walking through the parking lot at the end of the day.

Multiple media. The more channels of communication you use, the better your chance of creating an organization that “gets” the vision. Use the newest communication technologies, but don’t forget the tangibles: coffee mugs, t-shirts, luggage tags and whatever else you can think of that will keep the message in circulation. (more…)

Positive Discipline

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

CRM Learning Positive Discipline Training VideosMost managers agree that the worst part of their jobs is taking disciplinary action when an employee’s performance is not where it needs to be.  In fact, many managers hate it so much, they’ll look for excuses not to do it.  Some of the common rationalizations people use to avoid confronting a performance problem include: “the employee’s performance isn’t that bad”,  “eventually, this problem will go away on its own”, or,  “I’m too busy to deal with this.”   What’s really going on, in most cases, however, is that the manager simply doesn’t know how to handle the situation.

Helping managers develop the confidence and competence they need in this area requires that they learn how to minimize the negative emotions that typically accompany performance discrepancies. (more…)

Leadership and Self Deception

Wednesday, December 25th, 2013

Leadership Training VideosIt is human nature to want to to blame others for our problems or to attribute them to circumstances “beyond our control”.   But, in many cases, when we do this, we miss the opportunity to actually solve the problem.  Why?  Because in many cases the root cause of the problem is us!

In the workplace, leaders engage in this type of avoidance all the time. It’s called self deception and it is said to be the #1 cause of organizational ineffectiveness.

Based on the bestselling book by the same name, the thought-provoking video training program Leadership and Self Deception helps people examine the role they play in recurring problems.  Trainees gain awareness into what they can do to break through this barrier and, in the process, increase productivity and improve workplace relationships.   The program’s video features a dramatic reenactment of 19th century physician Ignaz Semmelweiss’ profound discovery surrounding the root cause of certain diseases.  This video, along with comprehensive workshop materials, sets the stage for breakthrough group discussion and personal growth and discovery. (more…)

4 Causes of Ineffectiveness in Empowered Teams

Monday, September 2nd, 2013

Business training - Group ThinkTeam empowerment can prove to be completely ineffective and meaningless if an organization does not support empowerment with a few key factors:

 

Inadequate Investment in Training and Development: Training and development is an essential ingredient for the effectiveness of team empowerment so that the team is geared to take on the challenge of their new role. Without training the members to the standard they are expected to deliver it is unlikely the team will produce the results desired.

 

Inadequate Access to Information and Other Resources: Without access to the latest information an empowered team will not be able to make quick decisions. If they don’t have adequate financial, technological or human resources at their disposal then they can’t implement their decisions properly. Even technical experts within the company are an important resource. For example, if sales teams can invite company experts such as engineers who have direct knowledge of the product to important sales meetings, it might help them immensely in closing the deal. If they have access to a CRM database they can create better selling strategies and even design innovative sales approaches like upselling, cross selling or bundling.

(more…)

Making the Impossible POSSIBLE

Thursday, July 18th, 2013

Business people meeting in the officeBig goals and big challenges often feel overwhelming simply because they’re so big.

They can also feel overwhelming if we’re uninspired by the potential outcome.  When we’re not intrigued by what might happen, we’re not engaged – and when we’re not engaged, finding solutions and doing what it takes to create success is very hard work. (more…)

The One Thing that Changes Everything

Tuesday, April 30th, 2013

Both customers and employees need to feel that they can trust an organization’s leadership to make sound decisions, communicate clearly, and respond swiftly and appropriately to challenges and opportunities.  Leadership carries many responsibilities, and the first and foremost of these responsibilities is trustworthiness.  When trust breaks down, customers leave and employees disengage.

It’s commonly thought that once trust has been lost, it cannot be regained.  Fortunately, that’s not true.  These three steps can help increase trust in your organization, no matter where you and your leadership are on the relative scale of trustworthiness. (more…)

How Stories Inspire Action

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

“Once upon a time…”

What child doesn’t love and look forward to story-time?  Whether at the library, in the classroom, or curled up on the couch with a parent or elder sibling, story-time is a time for imagination and dreams.

And story-time is a time for learning.  The classic stories, from Grimm’s fairy tales to Dr. Seuss’s flights of fancy, teach important lessons to children even as they entrance and entertain.

As adults, we still love story-time – we just call it watching television, reading books, or going to the movies.  Even if the book we’re reading or program we’re watching falls into a nonfiction category, there are still stories being told; and even if it’s the most far-out fiction, there are still important lessons being learned and ideas being conveyed.

Of course marketing professionals are well aware of the power of a good story.  After all, what’s a product testimonial or case study but a story?  And in all areas of business, leaders who use storytelling to inspire action are leaders who know how to communicate effectively, motivating and engaging their employees to work towards organizational goals. (more…)


 

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