Friday, 31 March 2017

Part 1: The Five Levels of Leadership

Learn from a leadership expert how to take the lid off your leadership level and grow your business or organisation. Really important material if you are a leader of any sort.

Thursday, 30 March 2017

Leadership Exposed: Things You Thought You Knew About Leadership by Tim Maher

This article is about leadership in its different forms such as formal as in politics and business and informal as in the elder of a family. People who have achieved a lot in their field of endeavour have positions of leadership bestowed upon them. Leadership is a process of becoming and it starts with the individual. It is a shared process with a team of people. Depending on circumstances different styles of leadership are required in practice.

Much has been written about leadership: rules, pointers, styles, and biographies of inspiring leaders throughout world history. But there are certain leadership ideas that we ourselves fail to recognize and realize in the course of reading books. Here is a short list of things you thought you knew about leadership.

1. Leaders come in different flavors.
There are different types of leaders and you will probably encounter more than one type in your lifetime. Formal leaders are those we elect into positions or offices such as the senators, congressmen, and presidents of the local clubs. Informal leaders or those we look up to by virtue of their wisdom and experience such as in the case of the elders of a tribe, or our grandparents; or by virtue of their expertise and contribution on a given field such as Albert Einstein in the field of Theoretical Physics and Leonardo da Vinci in the field of the Arts. Both formal and informal leaders practice a combination of leadership styles.
• Lewin's three basic leadership styles – authoritative, participative, and delegative
• Likert's four leadership styles – exploitive authoritative, benevolent authoritative, consultative, and participative
• Goleman's six emotional leadership styles - visionary, coaching, affiliative, democratic, pacesetting, and commanding.

2. Leadership is a process of becoming.
Although certain people seem to be born with innate leadership qualities, without the right environment and exposure, they may fail to develop their full potential. So like learning how to ride a bicycle, you can also learn how to become a leader and hone your leadership abilities. Knowledge on leadership theories and skills may be formally gained by enrolling in leadership seminars, workshops, and

conferences. Daily interactions with people provide the opportunity to observe and practice leadership theories. Together, formal and informal learning will help you gain leadership attitudes, gain leadership insights, and thus furthering the cycle of learning. You do not become a leader in one day and just stop. Life-long learning is important in becoming a good leader for each day brings new experiences that put your knowledge, skills, and attitude to a test.

3. Leadership starts with you.
The best way to develop leadership qualities is to apply it to your own life. As an adage goes "action speaks louder than words." Leaders are always in the limelight. Keep in mind that your credibility as a leader depends much on your actions: your interaction with your family, friends, and co-workers; your way of managing your personal and organizational responsibilities; and even the way you talk with the newspaper vendor across the street. Repeated actions become habits. Habits in turn form a person's character. Steven Covey's book entitled 7 Habits of Highly Effective People provides good insights on how you can achieve personal leadership.

4. Leadership is shared.
Leadership is not the sole responsibility of one person, but rather a shared responsibility among members of an emerging team. A leader belongs to a group. Each member has responsibilities to fulfill. Formal leadership positions are merely added responsibilities aside from their responsibilities as members of the team. Effective leadership requires members to do their share of work. Starting as a mere group of individuals, members and leaders work towards the formation of an effective team. In this light, social interaction plays a major role in leadership. To learn how to work together requires a great deal of trust between and among leaders and members of an emerging team. Trust is built upon actions and not merely on words. When mutual respect exists, trust is fostered and confidence is built.

5. Leadership styles depend on the situation.
How come dictatorship works for Singapore but not in the United States of America? Aside from culture, beliefs, value system, and form of government, the current situation of a nation also affects the leadership styles used by its formal leaders. There is no rule that only one style can be used. Most of the time, leaders employ a combination of leadership styles depending on the situation. In emergency situations such as periods of war and calamity, decision-making is a matter of life and death. Thus, a nation's leader cannot afford to consult with all departments to arrive at crucial decisions. The case is of course different in times of peace and order---different sectors and other branches of government can freely interact and participate in governance. Another case in point is in leading organizations. When the staffs are highly motivated and competent, a combination of high delegative and moderate participative styles of leadership is most appropriate. But if the staffs have low competence and low commitment, a combination of high coaching, high supporting, and high directing behavior from organizational leaders is required.

Now that you are reminded of these things, keep in mind that there are always ideas that we think we already know; concepts we take for granted, but are actually the most useful insights on leadership.

Tuesday, 28 March 2017

The 5 Stages to Start Evidence-Based Leadership by Stacey Barr

Expert Author Stacey BarrThe implementation of evidence-based leadership is iterative. It's too profound a shift to happen in one go. And it will never happen if we wait to thoroughly research our current state, detail a change management plan, save enough budget to resource it all, and delay until the time is just right and the planets have lined up.

Starting at the top is the quickest and easiest way to get rolling on the journey of high performance, because employees follow what leaders do. It's too risky for them to do otherwise. Even if leaders say over and over again 'Start measuring what matters!', nothing will change if they aren't doing it themselves.

Even when it starts from the top, the implementation of evidence-based practice across the organisation will follow iterations. It's not going to happen in one fell swoop. With each iteration, it gets easier and smoother. And changes stick better.

So don't feel overwhelmed by the adoption of evidence-based leadership. Simply focus on the first iteration. Move through the stages, monitor how it works, and see how that informs your next iteration.

There are five stages in the first iteration of implementing evidence-based management across the organisation.

Stage 1: Decide to be evidence-based leaders. 
It's worth having this conversation with your leadership team. And this is a conversation for the whole leadership team, not just part of it. 
It's worth exploring the leadership habits of Direction, Evidence and Execution, and the organisational habits of Decision, Action and Learning. What do they mean to you? How do you see them practised? Where is there the opportunity to practise them more deliberately?

Stage 2: Create a measurable corporate strategy. 
Goals are often immeasurable because of weasel words, an action-orientation, and multi-focused complexity. So goals should be reworded to make their true meaning much more apparent to everyone. This automatically makes them easier to measure. So choose quantitative measures from the evidence that most convinces you of each goal being achieved. And now you have a direction that's easy to communicate, easy to understand, and easy to monitor. It's easy to take seriously!

Stage 3: Cascade the strategy. 
Emailing the strategic plan to everyone, or rolling out a series of presentations about it, isn't going to get the level of buy-in that's necessary to fully execute it. People need to be engaged in a discussion about the strategic plan, they need to ponder it, to ask questions, to challenge it, to explore how they contribute to it. Then they can make it their own. This needs communication that is: two-way, like a dialogue, unstructured to allow for exploration, and flexible so people can join in on their own terms.

Stage 4: Let the cascade flow naturally. 
There's a risk with adopting a new approach to cascading strategy and creating a performance culture. It's to do too much too soon. Starting small with this stage is important to avoid overwhelming people, and burning them out. So start cascading your evidence-based strategy in small bites. One way is to allow teams to pilot-test the new approach to setting goals and measures. Then later they will have more confidence to implement it fully.

Stage 5: Reflect and learn for the next iteration. 
Did you close your performance gaps? What was the return on the investment in doing that? What did you learn about the dynamics driving performance in your processes and systems? What did you learn from failed attempts to close the performance gaps? What did you learn about yourselves? What is the next most important thing to focus on, to close your performance gaps further? These are the questions to ask at this point. Then tweak your approach for another iteration.

Will you start? 
Mastery of something as complex as leading an organisation to true high performance doesn't happen quickly. It's hard, it's challenging, and it's a long road. But we need you on that road.

What have you seen work well to instil evidence-based leadership in an organisation?


Thursday, 23 March 2017

Advice From The Most Successful People On The Planet - Episode 5

Learn the 5 second rule - feel  the fear and do it anyway!

Advice From The Most Successful People On The Planet - Episode 4

To be successful - have confidence to be who you are! Do what your best at!

Advice From The Most Successful People On The Planet - Episode 3

Learn the secrets to success from those who have learnt to be successful!

Advice From The Most Successful People On The Planet - Episode 2

Continue to listen to advice from the most successful people on the planet. Know who you are and build a vision of who you want to become!

Sunday, 19 March 2017

How To Choose A Field For Success by Charles Emory

Expert Author Charles EmoryWhat is success? If you were to ask a dozen people, there would probably be a dozen different answers. Defining success is not like defining an equilateral triangle, which has a precise definition.

Success is different for each of us because we have different values. For some it is determined by how much they have - money, cars, houses, etc. For others it involves accomplishments they have achieved - academic, athletic, or creative. For still others it might reflect simpler ideals - a steady job, a loving family, and well-raised children.

What would make you feel successful? Whatever that is you should pursue it. You should never feel guilty because you are ignoring someone else's idea of success.

Stop and think. What is it that you really want to be doing? One of the best measures of success lies with your ability to work at a job
that you choose and enjoy. If you are able to do that, then you are a success.

Being a success sounds so simple. But it's not. For most of us the ideal job, the one that would bring us so much satisfaction, is not one that's easy to get.

Want to be a world-class athlete? Think of all the years of training and competition needed to become a professional.

Want to be a lawyer? Imagine the years of school, the major expense, and then the bar exam to pass.

Want to be a bestselling novelist like Stephen King? Read about his personal struggles before a publisher finally took a chance on him.

Often there is so much competition for the jobs many of us would enjoy that only the most qualified people are selected for those jobs.

This is where becoming a success starts.

Consider who you are. What are your values? Are you more physical or mental? Would you rather work with other people or alone? Do you want work that involves precise steps, or do you want to be creative?

Knowing who you are, which types of work would be best for you? Which one would you enjoy the most? Which one would you be most willing to prepare for?

Many times making that decision is not easy. When you think about the various aspects involved, it can be confusing.

My advice is this. First, prioritize your values in a list to see what is most important to you. Second, study the requirements needed to qualify for each job. Third, decide which job you would sacrifice time, energy, and money to prepare for. Finally, after looking at all of this information, choose the work you are most passionate about doing.

Your passion for that work will be a key quality to push you to success.

Charles Emory

Article Source

Saturday, 18 March 2017

How to Get Your People Behind You - Genuinely by Paul Furey Ph.D

Expert Author Paul Furey Ph.DSolutions are like antiques - provenance is all. It can look right; it can feel right; it can smell right; it can tick all the logic boxes but it can still turn out to be a fake if you can't prove that it came from the right place. If your way of inventing solutions doesn't involve the people they're meant for, you're in for a rough ride.

After years of wasting money on lawn treatments; miracle granules of one sort or another promising to transform our Ypres-like landscape into verdant weed-free bowling greens, I decided to get some help. I called the number on the card that had dropped through my letterbox a few days before. It promised to maintain my lawn for me more cheaply than I could do it myself. Fat chance!
Nevertheless, an appointment was set and the diagnostician duly turned up to do her stuff. She poked and prodded the patient, took soil samples, and generally had a whole conversation with the lawn along the lines of "I bet you haven't been watered today have you", and "Oooh, you haven't had any fertilizer for years have you - poor thing". Anyway, this tea and sympathy thing went on for about fifteen minutes. She then took her measurements and gave the prognosis. "We can't do miracles but we'll do our best." Sure enough, the patient recovered quickly and is now a spectacle to behold: lots of grass, very little mud, no moles.

Projects are very rarely simply exercises of coming up with a solution and then getting people to do it or buy into it. In fact, I'll stick my neck out: they never are. I had decided to fix the lawn and had not consulted my wife or the children. I had assumed that they would be pleased with the outcome - and indeed they were. But I hadn't needed them to change or to co-operate; it was one of those rare projects were the results were enough. And yet, even in this case, the cracks are showing in my project management. I constantly have to police the lawn, patrolling for paddling pools left in situ for more than a couple of days and for stones plucked from flower beds to make 'really nice shapes on the grass'.

Taking a solution and presenting it to a group, of any size, for implementation or even mere acceptance is a risky business because the implementer never really knows what will happen next. You might intensely dislike being told what to do by someone you've never met; I might refuse to take action merely based upon the fact that I do know the person responsible for the change. Some of our colleagues might down tools merely because they haven't been consulted whilst others might refuse to act on the basis that they just disagree with the decision.
The success of any intervention is not really linked to the intrinsic quality of the idea and it's not in slick execution either. The basis for success lies in the degree to which you have managed to get the subjects for the intervention seriously interested in the problem to begin with. It's only then that you can start to think about inviting them to create a solution. Starbucks employ the notion of the 'servant leader': I, your designated leader, am there to enable you to do your job - I am at your service so that you can be of service to our customers.
I would suggest that change agents of all shapes and sizes might cast themselves in a similar role: I am here to help you to think about and formulate the solution to a problem; you have the solution and I will help you to discover it. You and your colleagues call the shots and I'll let you know if I hear any alarm bells.

So, if you hear a project leader talking about 'buy-in', unless they're talking about some good coffee, they've probably already missed the buy-in boat. Getting people on board is primarily a function of gaining their interest in the problem; they'll take much better care of the solution than you or I ever can.

Article Source

What if You're Not the CEO?

How do you change things in your organisation if you are not the overall leader?

Friday, 17 March 2017

Reinforce Clarity

Clarity is so important - find out how to apply this!

Overcommunicate Clarity

Why over communicating is one of the greatest straights of a healthy leadership and organisation!

You're More Successful Than You Realize (A Social Experiment)

You are more successful than you think!

What is Most Important, Right Now?

How to deal with disunity in your organisation to become very effective!

Wednesday, 15 March 2017

Sunday, 12 March 2017

Team Leadership - Three Key Functions Part 3 by Mark A Frohman

Without clear purpose, process and accountability a team will flounder and fail.

The value of teamwork cannot be overemphasized. All organizations need people willing to share their ideas, listen to others and be involved in the problem solving process. These people provide the operational intelligence to solve problems and shape decisions that improve performance and customer satisfaction.

The benefits of teams can only be achieved with leadership that performs these three key leadership functions: 
1. Setting purpose and direction (Part 1) 
2. Establishing team-based process and decision making (Part 2) 
3. Fostering conventional and nontraditional accountability (Part 3)

To help you lead your team across the chasm from floundering to high performance, we explain creating accountability in this article.

Successful teams set up conventional and nontraditional accountability 
High performance teams need measurements and feedback; this is a must from the beginning to the end. Accountability is simply wishful thinking without good measures; there is simply no way for the team to calibrate itself for high performance. Measurements and feedback enable teams to have accountability-more accountability than can exist in a traditional organization. Yes, more accountability than the hierarchical organization can deliver! Team accountability can have four distinct components:

• Team performance targets and results 
• Team processes factors 
• Peer support 
• Personal initiative

The conventional accountability of teams: 
Performance-based accountability

Performance accountability is the conventional kind. It refers to the tangible outcomes desired from the team and spelled out in the Charter (See Part One of this set of articles.). Developments of a new product, a new or revised safety procedure, a schedule for overtime allocation or reduced cycle time, are all examples of team outcomes. Conventional accountability is what the team is to accomplish and deliver to the organization.

Performance Measures: 
• Focus on charter-directed goals 
• Are customer-based 
• Encompass all functions represented on a team 
• Provide interim feedback mechanisms

The nontraditional accountability in teams:

Process Accountability

"Process" accountability covers how the members work together and manage their team-based relationships with one another. Process accountability includes: 
• Goal Setting 
• Communication 
• Problem Solving and Decision Making 
• Openness 
• Meeting Participation.

Process accountability requires careful definition of key team processes and their measures by the members themselves. At the end og this article is a Process Measurement Worksheet example.

Process Measures: 
• Focus on key team procedures and standards 
• Gauge open and timely communication and decision making 
• Critique interactions and satisfaction with what is going on 
• Gauge implementation of process skills and practices

Peer Accountability. 
In a successful team, members rely on each other to do their part and not let each other down. This is peer accountability when members support each other in getting the work of the team done. When team members discuss their expectations of each other, and accept them as "stakes in the ground" among each other then peer accountability is put into place. Peer accountability and its derivative, peer pressure, are far more effective then orders from the boss.

Peer Support Measures 
• Focus on member expectations of each other 
• Look at hand-offs among members 
• Put the issue of trust on the team agenda 
• Raise the issue of broadened understanding of other functions

Personal Initiative Accountability 
Individual accountability exists when an individual member sets a standard for himself regarding taking initiative to help the team succeed. Team members, seeing what is needed accept a share of the responsibility for results and set the expectation of themselves to act beyond their usual role or the normal call of duty.

For example a mechanical engineer was assigned to a team to redesign an overhead material handling system operating between machining stations. When the team generated the new design, he realized that the substitution of lighter weight plastics for metal could result in a lighter weight and safer system. However, there was little knowledge of plastics in the organization so he took it upon himself to learn more about the application of plastics and did technical cost analyses of substituting plastic for metal. Then he presented his work to the team which incorporated it willingly into their redesign.

The individual initiative was fostered by the desire to support the team in achieving its goals. Individual initiative may and does occur in the hierarchical organization. But the combination of a performance challenge and peer relations and support in a team can generate enhanced personal motivation and initiative. 
Individual Initiative Measures

• Are determined by individual team members 
• Involve assuming responsibility to help the team perform 
• Demonstrated by initiative and going beyond the call of duty 
• Focus on individual action which usually involve risk and persistence

In sum, successful teams discuss and agree to measures and checkpoints to monitor task, process and peer support performance. They work because they provide a common focus and language, define and reinforce the team process as well as performance. Without them a team is aimless and will flounder and fail.

Process Questionnaire 
To answer check the appropriate point on the scale. 
1. I feel about the work of our team. 
Highly highly 
dissatisfied 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 satisfied

2. How clear were the goals in this session? 
goals not goals 
apparent 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 very clear

3. I am ________________________to the decisions we made. 
strongly strongly 
uncommitted 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 committed

4. How much influence did you feel you had on the decision making? 
very very 
little 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 much

5. How often did you feel other members really listened to you? 
very very 
little 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 often

6. How often did you feel people understood what you said? 
very very 
little 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 often

7. How much cooperation and collaboration did you feel took place? 
very very 
little 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 much

8. To what extent were members open and leveling with each other about their thoughts and feelings,? 
none 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 great deal

9. To what extent did you trust the people in your team? 
none 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 great deal

10. Select one word describing the climate of your team:_________________________

Dr. Mark Frohman, president of Frohman Consulting Corp., is a recognized expert in developing high performing leaders, teams and organizations. He has been engaged as a consultant, coach and facilitator by more than 500 clients.

Dr. Frohman works with nonprofit and for-profit organizations ranging from start-ups, small and many family-run businesses to international companies and members of the Fortune 500 in executive coaching and training, strategy setting, team building, customer and employee relations, among others.

Article Source

Team Leadership - Three Key Functions - Part 2 of 3 by Mark A Frohman

Without clear purpose, process and accountability a team will flounder and fail. The benefits of teams can only be achieved with leadership that performs these three key leadership functions:

1. Setting purpose and direction (Part 1) 
2. Establishing team-based process and decision making (Part 2) 
3. Fostering conventional and nontraditional accountability (Part 3)

To help you lead your team across the chasm from floundering to high performance, we explain process and decision making leadership in this article.

Team Task and Process 
When a team forms to address a particular challenge or key results area or make decisions such as how to increase sales or spend budget money, the members discuss the specifics of the topic: relevant data, opinions and possible actions. This discussion of the assignment is the "what" or task of the team.

However, the team may encounter difficulties that have no direct relation to the task or assignment. For example, communication problems may develop or people may bog down in inconsequential items or stray from the agenda in fruitless discussion. The effect is to leave people frustrated and unproductive. These indirect problems involve breakdowns in the member interactions or the "how" or the process of the team. A leader must be aware and attentive to the process to become effective.

The role of the leader is to help a team address its task AND to look at its process of working together. The leader as "facilitator" observes the meeting process and helps members become aware of, and improve the way they work together in order to accomplish the team tasks.

The Team Leader Manages the Task 
The leader is to provide direction and structure to the task of the team. The purpose of this direction and structure the leader helps the team accomplish its tasks and goals. (See the first article of this set for an explanation of the "setting team purpose and direction" function of leaders.)

The leader's role is to ensure that the team:

Understands its purpose and agenda

Moves systematically through the agenda

Has adequate information for factual discussion

Utilizes sound problem solving and decision making steps

Keeps on track

Agrees on specific actions and decisions

The leader accomplishes this with behaviors such as:

Preparing the charter and agendas

(See first article for explanation of charters.)

Leads the meeting

Asking for information, ideas and opinions

Giving for information, ideas and opinions

Capturing ideas of others

Clarifying, summarizing, refocusing the discussion

Obtaining decisions and action commitments

Following up on commitments

The Team Leader Manages the Process 
The successful leader also concentrates on helping the team establish and maintain an atmosphere of openness, participation, cooperation, listening and support. This is process facilitation which serves to ensure that:

Members feel included and welcome to participate

The climate encourages open communication and candor

Members work cooperatively and handle differences effectively

Process problems blocking team progress are addressed effectively

Time is used wisely to meet the objective and agenda

The leader accomplishes this with behaviors such as:


Drawing members out

Facilitating the constructive expression of differences

Encouraging openness

Involving people in assignments

Asking questions

Supporting the team and its members

High performance teams are raised, not born. Building team processes and decision making is a make-or-break leadership function for raising performance.

Team Process and Decision Making Training 
If top management wants breakthroughs from teams, it cannot expect it from people using the same skills and mind set fostered and reinforced by the chain of command, hierarchical organization. The skill sets of effective team leaders and members are not the same as traditional managers or employees. The plan and control skills of traditional organizations are a small subset of what it takes to succeed in a cross-functional team. Interpersonal, team leadership and process skills are needed.

The implication is obvious. Management has to see to it that funds and time are set aside for team leader and team member skills training. Subjects often included in team leader skill training: 
Team Development Stages and Leader Behavior 
Team Leadership Styles 
Task and Process Dimensions of Teams 
Managing Change 
Leading Team Problem Solving 
Conducting Effective Meetings 
Managing Differences 
Managing Interfaces

Subjects for member skills training: 
Purpose of Teams and Team Based Organizations 
Team-based Problem Solving and Decision Making 
Interpersonal Communications 
Task and Process Functions of Members 
Effective Meetings 
Creativity and Dealing with Differences 
Building Trust

Trust Fosters Superior Decisions 
Trust fosters communication and collaboration among team members and in turn heightened commitment to the quality of decisions and team performance. With trust teams achieve; without trust, they muddle.

But there is a paradox. When cross-functional teams are formed members need to develop trust in one another. Yet their "standard" organization provides little experience or basis to do so. Management raises more cynicism and suspicion than trust in many organizations. Furthermore, trust in management and others has been lowered by layoffs, cost cutting and consolidations. Since management practices have done little to promote trust, management and team leaders can close the trust gap with these steps:

• Provide an honest, complete team charter (Part 1)

• Explain the competitive situation and the expectations of the customer. (Part 1)

• Provide group related process skills training (Part 2)

• Provide recognition and rewards for team achievement (Part 2)

• Make information available and insist on accountability. (Part 3)

Trust is crucial: With trust a team can take initiative and risks to accomplish their charter; without trust a team will balk-with good reason-at crossing the chasm to coordinated effort and high performance.

Rewards, Pats, Perks and Pizza Build Team Process 
An international study of team rewards and performance carried out by Dr. Mark Frohman confirms reports from many other team-based organizations: formal and informal team building activities not only improve teamwork but also are perceived as rewards to team members. Examples of "rewarding" team programs:

formal team training 
trips to customers 
team presentations or showcases to top management 
team "owned" space e.g. offices or equipment

Some of the best informal team rewards to promote team performance are "pats, perks and pizza." "Pats" are the informal positive feedback or "atta-boys" given to the team for accomplishment, written or verbal. Perks refer to "benefits" for team members accorded by virtue of team membership; for example, access to resources or meeting or conference participation. "Pizza" refers to opportunities for team members to socialize together either during or after the work day.

The importance of establishing accountability for task performance which is the basis for formal team recognition is addressed in the third article of this set, Team Leadership-Three Key Functions Part 3 of 3.

In summary, establishing team-based process and decision making is a key team leader function. With team-based process and decision making in place, team members will work well together and will figure out how to cross the chasm to high performance.

Dr. Mark Frohman, president of Frohman Consulting Corp., is a recognized expert consultant in developing high performing leaders, teams and organizations. He has been engaged as a consultant, coach and facilitator by more than 500 clients.

Dr. Frohman works with nonprofit and for-profit organizations ranging from start-ups, small and many family-run businesses to international companies and members of the Fortune 500.

Article Source 

Team Leadership - Three Key Functions - Mark A Frohman

Without clear purpose, process and accountability a team will flounder and fail. If these three functions are not addressed by the team leader:

The people in the team are competent, sincere, hard working. They want to succeed.

Without clear purpose, process and accountability, each person will do what he or she can - work on those things which he or she can accomplish single-handed. It is a situation of capable people, each pecking away at some part of the problem.

They are not getting the results, and they know it.

Lacking meaningful progress and feeling frustrated and defensive, they lash out at each other, thus making teamwork and coordinated efforts even harder to achieve.

The overall result is a breakdown in coordinated effort; instead there is floundering, frustration, disappointment and failure to produce.

The value of teamwork cannot be overemphasized. All organizations need people willing to share their ideas, listen to others and be involved in the problem solving process. These people provide the operational intelligence to solve problems and shape decisions that improve performance and customer satisfaction.

The benefits of teams can only be achieved with leadership that performs these three key leadership functions:

1. Setting purpose and direction (Part 1) 
2. Establishing team-based process and decision making (Part 2) 
3. Fostering conventional and nontraditional accountability (Part 3)

To help you lead your team across the chasm from floundering to high performance, we explain each function in the three articles in this set on leadership.

Setting purpose and direction

For team leaders, the most effective tool to create purpose and direction is the Team Charter. Most people are familiar with job descriptions and goal setting and performance evaluation for individuals. The charter is the comparable tool for teams. It presents the "job" of the team, its goals and measures and other pertinent information. A good Charters need be no more than a page or two and cover these items:

A. The business context or "big picture" of the team's assignment. 
B. The specific purpose and goals for the team. 
C. The expected results or "deliverables" in quantifiable terms (metrics) and due dates. 
D. Ground rules or constraints the team must consider. 
E. Team membership and roles. 
F. Meeting schedule

Sample Charter Outline.

I. Background: 
II. Purpose and Goals: 
III. Measures: 
IV. Schedule of Due Dates and Meetings: 
V. Members and Roles: 
VI. Ground rules and Constraints: 
VII. Sponsor:

Charter Approved By: (All member and leader) 

Chartering a team is a three step process.

Step one. Since the Charter "translates" the strategic intent or big picture into the work of the team, management is in the best position to do the first draft of the Charter.

The next two steps are crucial. The second step is top management reviews the draft with the team leader and others who have a significant relationship to the work of the team. Then the team leader presents the charter as a draft document to the team members in their first meeting where it is open for discussion, debate, and revision.

The Charter is the engine that powers a high performance team. This third step gives team members the opportunity to apply their knowledge, experience and insight. The team members who drive the "vehicle" must have the opportunity to test it and tweak it before the coordinated work begins. It also helps to form the team's identity and ownership of the Charter.

The Measures section of the team charter deserves special attention from management and team leaders. First of all, measures quantify the goals and the key results the team is asked to deliver. Secondly, the measures help each member see the big targets and the challenge the team has- in contrast to just their individual assignments and goals. Thirdly, measures provide a language to communicate project status and issues to people inside and outside the team and serve as a spring board for team-relevant discussion.

Team process scorecards

Team leaders encourage teams to expand the measures section in the charter as a way to build the communication and participation of the team members. They prompt the team to develop its own set of internal process and communication metrics, the Scorecard. These metrics cover team progress on interaction teamwork and membership issues. Typical scorecard items:

• Teamwork and team processes factors 
• Team decision making 
• Member satisfaction items 
• Meeting evaluations

Establishing team process and decision making is explained in the second article of this set, Team Leadership-The Three Key Functions, Part 2 of 3.

In summary, a key team leader function is to make sure teams receive information about their assignment and expectations of each other. With team purpose and direction in mind team members see and think outside their silos. Leadership that creates Team Charters and Scorecards give teams traction to cross the chasm and perform.

Dr. Mark Frohman, president of Frohman Consulting Corp., is a recognized expert consultant in developing high performing leaders, teams and organizations. He has been engaged as a consultant, coach and facilitator by more than 500 clients. Dr. Frohman works with nonprofit and for-profit organizations ranging from start-ups, small and many family-run businesses to international companies and members of the Fortune 500.

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Friday, 10 March 2017

Team Leadership Tips - 7 Top Tips For Leading Teams by Duncan Brodie

Expert Author Duncan BrodieA team as a collective can deliver much greater results than any one individual could. A key component in any team is the leadership of the team. So what are my 7 key tips when it comes to leading teams?

Tip 1: Have a clear vision

If you don't know where you are heading, how will you know when you have got to the destination? Put differently, it is essential that you create a clear vision of what you want the team to achieve so that it can be understood by everyone.

Tip 2: Learn to be a great listener

You are the leader and have many ideas, views, opinions and solutions. Your team know that this but also want to be able to offer their views and feel like they have been heard. A good leader recognises this and focuses most of their communication on listening.

Tip 3: Be someone who takes decisions

As a leader you need to weigh up the upside and downside of any particular option and then decide. Team members may not always support your decisions 100% or may not have taken the exactly the same decision. On they other hand they will respect you for not procrastinating.

Tip 4: Empower your team

One of the big advantages of a team is the range and variety of skills and experience that is available. You know what you are good at and not so good at, so empower those to do what they do best.

Tip 5: Encourage participation

In any team there will be those who are vocal and those who will be quieter. Your role as a leader is to encourage the full range of contributions and encourage the introverts who make great contributions to get their point across.

Tip 6: Be a role model

One of the best ways to show how you want others to act, behave and interact is to show them. By being a role model you encourage others to follow your lead.

Tip 7: Know your team limits

Within any team there will be a range of skills and abilities. If you are to lead effectively you need to understand the limits of all team members.

Bottom Line - Leading a team is a challenge but by doing some simple things you can become a highly effective team leader. So what's your first step in becoming a highly effective team leader?

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Patrick Lencioni - The 5 dysfunctions of a team

One of the best talks on team leadership I have ever heard! Very funny too.

Leadership - Engage your Team - Create a Culture of Engagement

Little things you can do to build the team that you lead!

Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Managers - The Most Comprehensive Seven Type Categorization by Mohan Reddy

Manager: This word evokes a lot of emotions in all of us. Many a time our manager or manager(s) decide our fate and career prospects in our professional lives based on various well written, documented processes and sometimes on completely fictitious and insane self-assumptions, which have no sensible logic! This word will flood our memories with many words: supportive, demanding, task-master, kind hearted, humorous, motivational, energetic, knowledgeable, flexible, reasonable, human, egoistic, approachable, mentor, allergic, aggressive... unrealistic, scheming, unreasonable, fearful, de-motivating, sarcastic, sadistic, the list is endless. Some managers have had an immense positive effect and some drastic negative effects on our lives. I have segmented them into seven categories and briefly detailed only the positives aspects of each of these categories. Check out your type, or your manager type. Most have over lapping qualities, but all will have one of these as a dominant style of managing teams.

Emergency Manager: These managers fully understand the importance of profits and returns. They are good planners, care for the health and safety of their colleagues. They are great at handling crisis, take risks, and seldom compromise on organizational goals or cross legal boundaries. They are control freaks and authoritative in nature. They are decisive and calm even among the midst of chaos and emergency situations. They never lay back and are always pushing you beyond your limits.

Relationship Manager: Their ability to build and work on relationships is their primary strength. They handle conflicts easily on the basis of this inherent strength of investing a lot of time with everyone. They use their interpersonal and strong communication skills to gain trust and loyalty among team members.
Their emotional quotient is very high and hence can give you good and bad news with equal élan. They are customer focused, open in praising and recognizing your work. They are always available to listen to your problems and issues. They are quiet protective and demanding of their teams.

Adaptive Manager: They are good at logic, rational and scientific in approach. They use data to manage work and measure performance. They believe in systems and processes, and use them effectively in enhancing efficiency and driving productivity. Being experts in their field of specialty, they have strong analytical and technical skills. They think strategically and make quick decisions to capitalize on available opportunities. If inwardly focused, they are good at organizing information and monitoring results. If, outwardly focused, they anticipate work flow issues and get things done. They plan and prioritize their work and provide stability and continuity. They embrace and adapt best practices of others.

Supportive Manager: They focus on developing the healthy facets of your personality. They are accountable and take responsibility for all their thoughts, feelings, and actions. They seek opinions, build consensus, and empower their teams. They give others freedom, making them accountable for outcomes and results, hate micromanaging direct reports. They research well, evaluate risks before embarking on new ventures. They promote participation, equality, and diversity. They ignore or remove hierarchy. They are quite flexible. They are enablers and innovators, encourage others to express themselves and share their ideas. They enjoy challenges and are bold in their approach to problems.

Inspirational Manager: They have a clear vision and mission for themselves, others and the organisation. They demonstrate integrity and are living examples of values-based leadership. They build cohesiveness and focus on bringing values, openness, fairness, and transparency, they build trust and commitment among their teams. The culture they create unleashes enthusiasm, passion, and creativity within the teams they lead. They are more concerned about getting the best result for every one rather than their own self-interest. They are focused on the common goal for good. They are honest and truthful and display integrity in all they do. This confidence and their openness allow them to reclassify problems as opportunities.

Mentoring Manager: They are the game changers in your life. They are fully responsive, recognize and focus on building a working environment where individuals are encouraged and empowered to deliver their full potential. They collaborate to create win-win situations. They are practical and display empathy. They create an environment where individuals can excel. They are always actively mentoring and coaching their subordinates. They are intuitive decision-makers. They are inclusive. They are on top of their game. They are very active in building relationships that create goodwill and build resilience. They display emotional, social, and intellectual intelligence.

Visionary Manager: These managers are motivated by the need to be of service to all. They can handle any level of complexity. They care about legacy and what others think about them. They are focused more on long-term results rather than short-term gains. They see their own mission and that of their teams from a larger, organisational perspective. They are committed to social responsibility and ethics. They act with humility and compassion. They are generous in feelings, patient, and pardoning by nature. They are at ease with uncertainty and can tolerate ambiguity. They enjoy solitude and can be reclusive and reflective. They are admired for their wisdom and vision. They are great role models and achieve high status and success in life.

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Monday, 6 March 2017

Steve Jobs talks about managing people

Listen to Steve Jobs approach to managing people!

Classical Management Theory

Here is a good introduction to the ABC of Classical management theory to get some basic understanding before we move on to other issues!

Business Management

This week we are going to focus on business management. 

This will help you if you are a leader or manager of any sort in a business or organisation. This could also be applied to your own domestic life to some degree. 

So what is important in managing anything?

1) Managing yourself
2) Building & Managing your team
3) Playing to your strengths
4) Staffing your weaknesses
5) Having a Plan
6) Motivating yourself to take action
7) The art of delegation
8) Having a system

These are just some of the things we will be looking into this week. I trust you will find these articles and video clips helpful as you apply principles to your own management.

Alex Afriyie

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Food for thought: How your belly controls your brain | Ruairi Robertson ...

Find out about your second brain and keep healthy!

Power Foods for the Brain | Neal Barnard | TEDxBismarck

Learn what to eat to protect the brain!

Keeping Your Brain Young And Healthy by Carol Chuang

Expert Author Carol ChuangThe human brain is an extremely complex organ. Despite rapid scientific progress, the knowledge about how the brain works in still evolving.

The brain contains about 100 billion neurons, which are highly specialized nerve cells responsible for communicating information throughout the body. For each neuron, there are roughly anywhere from 1,000 to 10,000 synapses. A synapse is the connection between neurons that permits a neuron to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another neuron. Hormones and neurotransmitters are examples of chemical signals.

The old adage of humans only using 10% of our brain is not true. Every part of the brain has a known function. Humans continue to make new neurons throughout life in response to mental activity. When you learn something new, your brain undergoes physical changes. The brain keeps growing in the frontal and temporal lobes well into middle-age, which can be associated with better emotional development and wisdom.

The brain is, in fact, very much like a muscle which can be "bulked up" through exercise. Hence, it is possible to stimulate and challenge your brain as you get older to promote its continued growth. This means that the opposite also holds true - drug use, poor nutrition, or other assaults on your brain can interfere with its development and health. This may be the explanation why Alzheimer's disease and other types of dementia cases are skyrocketing in the U.S. and many developed countries.

So even if you haven't been leading the healthiest lifestyle thus far, making some positive changes now may still provide your brain what it needs to stay healthy as you age. The following are tips on how to keep your brain young and healthy.

Control Your Blood Glucose Levels

Latest studies show that people with type 2 diabetes are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer's compared with people who are non-diabetic. There is increasing evidence that even pre-diabetics are already at increased risk of cognitive decline.

Diabetes is normally associated with insulin resistance, a condition by which the cells in the body have become unresponsive to insulin. Recently, researchers have discovered a new type of insulin resistance called brain insulin resistance.

In this case, the brain is unable to access the insulin in the blood. As a result, brain cells are unable to utilize glucose which is its main source of fuel, causing them to degenerate and die. As neurons in the brain are lost, the brain shrinks, and memory and cognitive skills decline. Scientists are now labeling this new type of brain insulin resistance type 3 diabetes.

Lifestyle choices are a major contributing factor to insulin resistance. Being overweight, consuming excess foods loaded with carbohydrates (sugar, fruits, grains, legumes, starchy vegetables), and being sedentary are all known factors leading to insulin resistance.

Lose Your Spare Tire

There is a connection between abdominal fat and your brain. The deeper layer of visceral fat cells around your waist is like an active organ producing hormones that can cause higher insulin levels.

The brain has a lot of insulin receptors and they are concentrated in the hippocampus, which plays important roles in the consolidation of information from short-term to long-term memory and spatial navigation. Scientists found that the enzyme that breaks down insulin also breaks down beta-amyloid, the sticky protein that mucks up the brains in people with Alzheimer's.

However, this enzyme prefers to break down insulin. So if you have excess insulin, the enzyme will work on the insulin rather than the beta-amyloid, resulting in its accumulation. For this reason, in Alzheimer's patients, the hippocampus is one of the first regions of the brain to suffer damage. Memory problems and disorientation often appear among the first symptoms.


Research finds that with dementia, there is a shrinkage of the dendrites (branched projections of a neuron) that connect the neurons. There is also less production of neurotransmitters and the hippocampus gets smaller.

Numerous studies found that aerobic exercise encourages your brain to work at optimum capacity by causing nerve cells to multiply, strengthening their interconnections, and protecting them from damage. For older people, aerobic exercise is very effective in boosting executive skills that includes planning, scheduling, multi-tasking, dealing with ambiguity and working memory (the ability to store short-term memory and process the information). So, if you want to boost your brain size, go for a brisk walk every day.

Eat A Clean, Healthy Diet

Like the rest of your body, your brain depends on clean, healthy foods to function. While protein is the main source of fuel for your brain, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals from fresh vegetables are just as important, as is limiting sugar intake.

Nutrients that benefit your brain: 

Omega-3 fats are essential for the health of the protective myelin or sheath (which is made of 60% fat) that covers the communicating neurons. Wild Alaskan salmon is a rich source of omega-3 fats.
If you take a supplement, make sure the fish is sourced from clean, pristine, and uncontaminated water.
Vitamin B12 is critically needed to form healthy myelin and prevent brain shrinkage. B12 is available in natural form only from animal sources (meats, eggs, dairy products). Many supplements and fortified foods use the synthetic form of B12 which is not as well absorbed by the body.
Coconut oil. Brain cells of people with Alzheimer's don't utilize glucose well. Glucose is the brain's primary fuel, enabling neurons to produce acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter necessary for coherent thought. Without acetylcholine, you experience mental confusion and memory loss. Coconut oil provides ketones as an alternative fuel source to glucose that feeds the brain, restores and renews neurons, and prevents brain shrinkage.
Avoid these neurotoxins in your diet: 

Artificial sweeteners such as aspartame
Pesticides and herbicides
PCBs (common in farmed salmon)
Heavy metals such as mercury (dental amalgam fillings, many fish species), aluminum (antiperspirants, aluminum cookware), lead (paint, lead pipes), and copper (copper cookware, copper pipes)
Trans fat (hydrogenated polyunsaturated vegetable oils)
Get Sufficient Vitamin D

Researchers have uncovered strong links between low levels of vitamin D and increased risk of cognitive impairment. In addition, there is ample evidence that suggests vitamin D is neuroprotective by reducing inflammation and promoting healthy brain development and function.

Since most people, especially the elderly, don't get much sun exposure or are always wearing sunscreen, it is vital to take a vitamin D3 supplement. Dosage will vary from person to person but it is generally safe to take up to 10,000 IU per day. The only way to know is to get a blood test for your 25(OH)D level. The optimal range is between 50-70 ng/mL.

Protect Your Brain From Cell Phones

The World Health Organization has recently announced that radiation from cell phones is a possible carcinogen to the brain. The agency found evidence of increased glioma (brain tumor) and acoustic neuroma (tumor on your auditory nerve) for mobile phone users. It now lists mobile phone in the same "carcinogenic hazard" category as lead, engine exhaust, and chloroform. 

Don't hold the phone next to your ear, instead, use a wired earpiece or the speakerphone function. The further the phone is from you, the less radiation is absorbed.
Cell phones emit the most radiation when they are attempting to connect to cell towers. A moving phone or a phone in an area with a weak signal has to work harder, emitting more radiation. To reduce your radiation exposure, avoid holding cell phones close to your head in elevators, buildings, and rural areas.

Challenge Your Mind

The brain is like a muscle. If you challenge it, it will get stronger. Mind-training activities stimulate blood flow, strengthen the synapses between neurons, and keep your brain fit as you age. 

Reading challenging books
Learning a new language
Playing a musical instrument
Playing games such as crossword puzzles, Scrabble, and sudoku
Mastering a new hobby
Engaging in friendly debates
Limit TV

Last but not least, when you watch TV, your brain goes into neutral. People watching TV have increased alpha brain waves, meaning their brains are in a passive state as if they are just sitting in the dark. It is no wonder that too much TV watching has been linked to low achievement.

Carol Chuang is a Certified Nutrition Specialist and a Metabolic Typing Advisor. She has a Masters degree in Nutrition and is the founder of CC Health Counseling, LLC. Her passion in life is to stay healthy and to help others become healthy. She believes that a key ingredient to optimal health is to eat a diet that is right for one's specific body type. Eating organic or eating healthy is not enough to guarantee good health. The truth is that there is no one diet that is right for everyone. Our metabolisms are different, so should our diets.

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