You’ve most likely heard a Dr. Seuss poem in your early life, and maybe the following lines are reminiscent:
“You can steer yourself any direction you choose.
You’re on your own. And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy who’ll decide where to go”
(Dr. Seuss “Oh The Places You’ll Go”)
Dr. Suess makes the point that applies to how you get motivated – you have the ability to take control and steer yourself on the course of your choosing.
As you begin a new year, you set goals, but how effective are they? Are they “setting your course” and moving you in the direction you want to go? Effective goals are:
When you set S.M.A.R.T goals, you follow the above criteria. In order to implement them, it involves creating a plan. “Life’s a great balancing act” according to Dr. Seuss, and when you plan with intention and focus, you are able to balance all your priorities.
Let’s get S.M.A.R.T. Share with me your ideas on how to be more successful in following through on your plans. I will gather the results and post them here.
Set your goals, plan your actions and stay focused – Great success to you!
Quoting from Dr. Seuss’ poem “Oh, The Places You’ll Go,” …..”Life’s a great balancing act…” and if you have intention and focus you can balance your priorities. Are you concerned about losing your good staff and strong performers with their customer service skills? Do they feel “left out?” Planning specific programs to help these people grow will show them that you value their work. Help them create a “plan” for their work that engages them and makes them part of the overall property’s performance plan. Planning brings balance to your work life as well as personal life. Remember the Pareto Principle, also known as the 80/20 rule? It states that 80% of the results you get are from 20% of your actual efforts – so that makes it an effective tool for understanding how to manage your staff and your time. When you have established a performance plan or an operational time line, you can use an Outlook calendar, or similar tool, to make the plan a “reality” for everyone to work towards. Some tips you can use when planning:
— If possible, plan for the month, and identify important deadlines and the steps you need to do to meet them
— Assign a priority to projects which helps you focus on the highest priorities and aligns the weekly tasks with your goals
— Write the strategies for completing the tasks that are unique for your job
Make the staff an integral part of your planning process so they know how their job fits into the overall picture for your property, or your organization. Whether you’re dealing with multiple projects or improving your effectiveness at meeting deadlines, empower yourself and your staff with maximum control over their work. “Life’s a great balancing act….” and you have control – share that control within your organization and you’ll have the support of your key employees. When they’re involved and have some control over their job, they’ll want to stay.
Kick It Up for Top Performance!
Copyright Bonnie F. Mattick, 2013
I recently chatted with Ken Bossone, host of World of Positive Thinkers Radio Show, and guest facilitator, Pam Lontos. Their topic for the show that day was how to help companies who want to improve employee performance and have employees who want to be happier in their jobs. I showed them how employees who feel empowered in their jobs are more positive in their work performance and carry that positive attitude into their personal life as well. In the opinions I shared were three of the best reasons for getting employees actively engaged in their job. Employees who are engaged will:
1. Feel empowered when they are more involved in the business of their company;
2. Be more productive and effective with co-workers and customers;
3. Demonstrate management’s intention and follow-through with it.
I shared an experience I had with a concierge at a major hotel in Chicago, while I was speaking at a conference. When I asked to have my boarding pass printed out at a specified time, the concierge responded in a negative manner and let me know that was not one of her job duties. When I took the request to a “front desk supervisor”, the individual said she was “more than happy” to accommodate my request and would see that I received the boarding pass at the end of the day when I returned to the hotel. One of these employees was not enthusiastic about her work and certainly was not engaged in her job. She had a limited scope on what her responsibilities included, and they did not include printing guests’ boarding passes. The other employee goes through her day with enthusiasm and a pleasant manner to make the guests feel “special.”
Employees who take pride in their job, enjoy being recognized for their job performance and gain a sense of personal achievement when they receive it. Their positive attitudes are contagious in the work place and affect the work of others. Here’s a link to the radio show that was recorded the day of my interview:
Remember: “Creative ideas flourish best in a shop which preserves some spirit of fun.” – Leo Burnett
Kick it Up for Employee Engagement!
Copyright Bonnie F. Mattick, Unforgettable Outcomes Intl 2013
Do you have employees who are excited about their work? When managers share the goals and vision for the company, employees better understand how their role makes a difference. If you follow Harvey Mackay, consultant on employee development, you may have seen a recent column he wrote. He states “People have a way of becoming what you encourage them to be.”
I recommend you make employees aware of programs where their input cam be valuable and recognize them for supporting the mission of the company. Empower your employees and encourage positive behavior!
“Creative ideas flourish best in a shop which preserves some spirit of fun. Nobody is in the business for fun, but that does not mean there cannot be fun in business.” – Leo Burnett
As an employee, or a self-employed entrepreneur, you need to use a variety of skills in order to meet your goals, accomplish your job and have more fun at work. You are more engaged with your work when you are using multiple ways to think creatively – like an artist works.
I compare your creativity to Picasso, a classic, fine artist – he extracted his inspiration for paintings and sculptures from his life experiences. And in the same way, you may get your inspiration from your environment or in different forms. You may not be inspired at the time you most need it but if you consider that your creativity is affected by your life experiences, you gain insight into a valuable resource. In an article for Speaker Magazine (May 2012), “Come to Your Other Senses,” I share three different views on how artistic techniques can create exceptional experiences for others. Creativity occurs when you use your imagination and generate new ideas or create new uses from old ideas.
Psychologist, Barbara Frederickson, Ph.D. has researched a link between creativity and happiness. (Described in her book Positivity) Dr. Fredrickson says exploring ideas and using our imagination makes us “feel open and alive. Being creative makes us happy,” and I agree. Just imagine how passionate you could be about going to work if you knew you would have an enjoyable day and make a difference with other employees in your workplace?
You too can be creative with your work when you open your mind to view things from a different perspective. Everyone can nurture his or her creativity. Brainstorm ideas with your co-workers, family and friends and engage them in the process. It doesn’t take a Picasso painting to make your work have an emotional impact in your attitude toward your work. You will have positive outcomes that benefit you personally as well as the bottom line for your company.
Copyright Unforgettable Outcomes, Intl® 2013
By Bonnie F. Mattick
What are you doing to get buy-in for your work projects? Perhaps you have identified corrections or changes in processes that would increase your business results and you need support for the changes. Make sure all people affected are aware of the changes you want to make. Get their involvement in the implementation, and if one or more individuals aren’t on board, hold a discussion or focus group meeting to determine possible solutions.
In a similar situation at a client’s site, we had one employee who was unengaged in the process and was unwilling to provide input to help the others succeed with the changes they needed to make. This person resisted the change in their business process until we gave them some new parameters that let them know there were high expectations, top level management support and follow-through to ensure success for the project.
You can have the best design, the most creative presentation, but the project can be slowed down and disrupted if you don’t have buy-in from the people in the group…… and complete participation by the people at the top!
Use the following 3 steps and you will raise your success rate:
1. Tell the participants of the program you have high expectations for success in terms of value to individuals and to the company.
2. Ensure you have strong management support by linking the project to the priorities of the company and by defining the outcomes of the project as it relates to the business.
3. Give the participants assurance for follow-through and continued support of the program. They need to believe that the time and effort they invest will be worth it.
Be an engaged leader and you will gain success!
While preparing to facilitate an association board retreat recently, I was referred to an article on how the members of a board of directors interact.
The article compared ineffective versus effective team behaviors in meetings. It emphasized that board members need to “promote and implement” the contributions of all members.” To review some of the key points made, I’d like to ask you to consider the following questions?
1. Do your board members give everyone a chance to join in on the discussion?
2. Are people listening to what others say, or do they just nod their head in agreement, and go on talking about another topic?
3. When listening to comments made, do members contribute to those comments and agree or express disagreement in a meaningful way?
4. How engaged are the board members during the meeting?
5. Are there individuals (leaders or committee chairpersons) who contiribute by motivating others with positive feedback?
Share your ideas and give me another question you think I should add to this list – I’ll post it here. And, I value your feedback.
We lost a motivational leader and “giant” today – Zig Ziglar passed away November 28, 2012 and left a huge legacy. Many speakers, trainers and corporate leaders have been mentored and guided by this man. The imprint he left on people will last forever as he’s quoted and referenced in numerous places. He lived his stories and led by example with his character and values – very simple and straight forward.
One of my favorite Zig Ziglar quotes is:
“Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.”
He was an engaged leader and inspiring individual who is unforgettable!
At this point in our history and time of elections for the leader, I went back to review our roots and the foundation of our nation. I need to review what I’ve learned about the U.S. Constitution. I became acquainted with an outstanding scholar of the U.S. Constitution and through him I’ve learned more than I ever remember learning in my American history classes. Chad Kent, speaker and expert on the U.S. Constitution, is known as “the Constitution Guy” – he helps people understand the intricacies of the Constitution as if he knew the Founding Fathers personally. (learn more at www.ChadKentspeaks.com) He demonstrates a passion for his topic, he shows his passion for liberty and the U.S. Constitution. According to Chad, “the U.S. Constitution and the Declaration of Independence are the greatest documents in political history.” Shouldn’t we all review this prior to going to exercise our right to vote for our leaders of this great nation? It does not matter what political party you belong to, or what candidates are most impressive to you. The most important fact is your right to vote and express your belief in a candidate.
Setting the stage for a culture of accountability and engagement begins with developing leaders as coaches and mentors. If leaders understand the value of engagement and support it by modeling it and fostering mentorship through their managers, those managers in turn can create engaged employees—who foster loyal customers.
Mentoring is just one example of how you can get employees more engaged in a program. The more people involved, the more you will have wanting to get on board with the process. Success increases with numbers. You will see more enthusiasm when employees feel they are part of a successful group.
Likewise, a coaching program can supplement the on-the-job learning. Coaches provide leadership and incentive beyond the formal training process. The coach works in the job setting and observes employees doing their tasks – if tasks are not done correctly, the coach may make a correction or demonstrate the proper way to do it. However, he/she can connect the job task to the classroom training the employee attended and allow the employee opportunity to apply the learning on the job.
Four ways leaders can support managers at all levels:
• Help them believe there is value in supporting the employee development process.
• Help them feel confident that they can effectively provide support.
• Make them aware of the objectives for the mentoring program and the participants.
• Recognize them for providing support to others in their job role.
Leadership makes the difference in either a coaching or mentoring program. It’s not what you say, but what you “model” and the actions you take. As a leader, when you state your intention, demonstrate enthusiasm, and share that passion with others, your enthusiasm builds. You create employees who are passionate about their work and committed to the business. Your enthusiasm will be contagious as you mentor and train others. This energy encourages natural problem solving and stimulates the creativity of your staff. In this way, mentors who encourage employee engagement create bottom-line results for the company. You form a foundation for leader succession. You foster future leaders who are enthusiastic and want to hire others who have similar qualities.
Helping you create an exceptional experience for employees and customers!