Tag Archives: leadership

Leading a Team During Organizational Change

One of the most difficult times a leader faces during the course of a career is dealing with change within an organization. From company mergers and account closings to employment shifts and adopting hybrid workforce solutions, leading a team through the uncertainty of change and company transformation can be challenging. However, leaders can expect at one time or another, they will have to face change head on.

According to a study by Garter, organizations have averaged five major companywide changes in the past three years, and surprisingly, not including changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Moreover, 75% of companies expect major change initiatives to increase in the near future. With change affecting organizations across North America, leaders will have to embrace a few techniques to ensure successful transitions for their teams. (more…)

Leaders: Four Things to Do Today to Ensure a Successful New Year

The new year is just around the corner, and with it comes newly realized optimism and strong goal-oriented determination. But to ensure your team is successful in the new year, it’s imperative to focus on the right things that will have positive impacts on your workplace objectives. Check out these four things to do today to ensure a successful new year!

Create Realistic Goals

When creating plans for the new year, one of the best things you can do is create ambitious, but realistic goals. According to a study from the University of Scranton, 92% of people fail to achieve their goals for the new year. That doesn’t create good odds for success. However, there’s a simple way to beat the odds: follow the S.M.A.R.T. goal-making plan. Make sure your goals are specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and time sensitive. (more…)

Four Cs to Lead By

In addition to being known as a pioneer in animation, as well as film, and the creator of some of the most beloved and recognizable characters in the world, Walt Disney was also responsible for leading and inspiring an innovative, industry-defining studio of “dreamers.”

“Somehow I can’t believe that there are any heights that can’t be scaled by a man who knows the secrets of making dreams come true. This special secret, it seems to me, can be summarized in four Cs. They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy, and the greatest of all is confidence. When you believe in a thing, believe in it all the way, implicitly and unquestionable.”
― Walt Disney

Although, in Disney’s words, the four Cs are the secret to making dreams come true, they’re just as easily applied to leadership and employee development. (more…)

What Companies Can Do to Develop the Next Generation of Leaders

Organizational success begins with having the right people. And while cultivating a core workforce is essential to maintain production, developing leaders within a company to bring the business to next-level success is imperative in the ever-changing business climate. A company’s workforce could have up to five generations working side-by-side; however, by 2024 41% of the workforce will be over the age of 55, with the majority of Baby Boomers expected to be out of the workforce in the next decade, according to a BLS report. As more experienced professionals retire, the leadership gap they leave behind could be an issue for businesses in North America. (more…)

What To Do When Your Boss is Laid Off

Your world just got shaken up; how do you handle it?

You walk into work as usual, but your boss isn’t there. You figure they’re at a doctor’s appointment, or maybe they had to bring their kid to school, so you go about your day like any other day. But they never show up. Eventually your boss’ boss calls you in for a discussion, and that’s when you find out they’ve been let go.

Maybe they did something wrong, or maybe it was a mutual decision. Regardless of the reason, your job is in for some major changes, at least in the short term, and probably a new boss.

What questions should you ask yourself? What does this mean for your job? Take a deep breath and review these tips.

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Does Your CEO Connect with Frontline Workers?

Most companies dedicate substantial time and energy to researching, planning, and implementing communication strategies that build stronger relationships with their customers, but the most successful also dedicate an equally significant amount of energy to communicating with their employees.

Legendary former General Electric CEO Jack Welch once said, “There are only three measurements that tell you nearly everything you need to know about your organization’s overall performance: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow. It goes without saying that no company, small or large, can win over the long run without energized employees who believe in the mission and understand how to achieve it.”

Why Employee Communication Matters

Employee communication is vitally important to building a successful company. In addition to building an informed workforce that clearly understands the why and how of the work they do each day, effective and genuine communication between a company’s senior leadership and its frontline workers can make or break employee engagement. For instance, if your CEO sees you in the hall every day and never remembers your name, you’re probably not going to feel valued as an employee. But if he or she both knows your name and asks for your opinion on big company changes? You’ll know you’re valued, and have a tangible company goal to work toward.

According to a Gallup study, only 22% of employees “strongly agree that their company’s leaders have a clear direction for their organization. And only 13% strongly agree that their organization’s leadership communicates effectively.” Similarly, a study by IBM and Globoforce found that “44% of employees do not feel their senior leaders provide clear direction about where the organization is headed.”

In many cases, a company’s senior leadership may very well have a detailed plan for the organization’s future, however, if it’s not being effectively communicated down the line to workers like you, it’s more difficult for employees to rally around a common goal. Opening the lines of communication with frontline workers makes it easier for everyone to work together toward a common goal.

Where Companies Fall Short in Their Communication Strategies

A poll from the Harvard Business Review highlighted some of the top communication issues that prevent effective leadership, including “not recognizing employee achievements” (63%), “not giving clear directions” (57%), “not having time to meet with employees” (52%), “not knowing employees’ names” (36%), and “not asking about employees’ lives outside of work” (23%).

The Solution

Whether it’s implementing a formal internal communication tool or organizing a weekly “coffee with the CEO” roundtable in the breakroom, it’s in a company’s best interest to make a deliberate and genuine effort to bridge the gap between the “C-suite” and frontline workers.

In fact, according to a study from Towers Watson on how businesses capitalize on effective communication, “Companies that are highly effective communicators had 47% higher total returns to shareholders over the last five years compared with firms that are the least effective communicators.”

Bottom line, employees care more when leadership takes the time to get to know them. They want to know where the company is headed. The less mystery, the better.

Does your CEO care about frontline workers? Let us know in the comments below!

4 Secrets to Getting a Promotion

Get Your Dream Position with These Quick Tips

Getting a promotion isn’t easy. There are only so many upper level positions, and competition is fierce. It’s important to be ready when those openings arise.

How? By being prepared. Earning the right to ask for a promotion isn’t a question of tenure or age—it’s a byproduct of knowing not only the inner workings of your own job, but also those of the company you work for and the position you want.

Here are four secrets to getting a promotion.

Know What You Want

Management isn’t for everyone. Before you ask for a promotion, ask yourself if being a leader is what you want. Do you desire the position for the title and accolades or because you truly want to manage and inspire others? If it’s just for financial reasons, consider asking for a raise instead. You may also want to consider applying for a position in another department, depending on your interests.

Management isn’t easy. Leadership can seem fun, but there are numerous responsibilities that come with such status, including handling billing and budgets, managing deadlines, and dealing with unhappy or sick employees. And that’s only a partial list!

Speak with Leadership

Once you’ve been at the company for some time and have earned your stripes with proven performance and knowledge of the company, talk to your manager. Let them know you’re out to achieve a promotion if the opportunity arises. Come with proven examples of your ability to rally, push, and inspire others, as well as metrics regarding your own performance.

Find a mentor at your company who can push you to succeed and speak candidly about areas in which you need improvement. Not every leadership experience is going to be a great one. A mentor can help you realize what went wrong and what you can do in the future to minimize those problems. Leaders don’t want novices in management roles; they promote those with demonstrated performance.

Be Prepared

A management position could open at any time. Therefore, preparation is key. A promotion isn’t something you get because you’ve been working at the company a certain amount of time. You only get the job if you’re the right fit at the right time.

Watch those who hold positions that may be attainable in the not so distant future. Unless your department expands, these are most likely your only options. Although you don’t want to be a direct copy of the individual currently in the position, make sure you exemplify the qualities of the role. Do your research! If they started working 15 years ago, you’ll need to know everything they learned in those 15 years.

Seek out team leader roles in projects and take initiative to show you can lead a team. This also gives you time to discover your own leadership style, and how to handle appropriate conversations with others in your team.

Apply

At the end of the day, you have to make your case. That means waiting for an opening or proving there is currently a need for a new management position. If you aren’t up to creating your own role (with detailed metrics regarding why that role needs to exist), you must wait.

If the leadership role is open to everyone, you’ll be able to apply. If it’s only open to a select few, you’ll have to hope your prior discussion with leadership will cause them to notice you as a great candidate.

Have you ever gotten a promotion? How did you achieve it? Let us know in the comments below!