Weekly Roundup for Weeks Ending 7.17.2016 and 7.24.2016
Ok, we have two weeks of content to cover this time so I will keep it short. Just a reminder that what I share in these weekly roundups is a collection of articles I have shared in the preceding week (or weeks in this case) with some of my own thoughts.
Always looking for a theme in what I share, what I find in these two week’s worth of stuff is the idea of getting overwhelmed – inundated, really – with the amount of advice, content and other things tugging at more and more of our attention. I am not into predicting the future, but I can safely say, and I think you will agree, that the amount of content we get exposed to on a daily basis will only increase, not decrease over time. So something that we all need to master is how to keep our sense of equilibrium in the midst of a deluge of information that hits us every day. To me, that tells me that it’s increasing more important that we spend more and more time with ourselves getting our priorities straight, doing what we love to do most, and ruthlessly rejecting all else. This requires that we increasing bring more and more awareness into our lives: awareness of what makes us tick, what our priorities are, and what’s most important to us.
So this week, pick out from the following resources just ONE that you can focus on, read through in entirety and perhaps commit to following up with a concrete action.
Management & Leadership
Which leadership style are you? (I came out as “Coaching.”) More importantly, is that *always* your leadership style or is it situational? (Which of These Leadership Styles is Right for You? (Decision Tree))
A myth is developing with these “leader vs manager” articles that a boss must be a leader and not a manager. A boss needs to learn how to be *both* a leader and a manager and choose the role she is required to play in a given situation. (Key Traits That Differentiate You From A Boss and A Leader)http://buff.ly/29VV0Jc
Agree whole-human-heartedly to the idea of reinvigorating the human side of HR. But I think the effort needs to go deeper than remembering and celebrating people’s birthdays. The “human element” must be made an integral part of the management process, not an after-thought. That’s the core premise of the work we do at Awayre, LLC. (How to reinvigorate the human side of human resources)
TIP: Don’t use a workflow automation tool unless you have a manual process in place for a major portion (I recommend 70%) of the work you are trying to automate. Disclaimer: This is not an endorsement of the product but it is free up to 15 users and may be worth a trial. (How to Use Asana for Project Management: The Complete Guide)
Steve Jobs: “… who wants to work for a manager from whom they can’t learn anything?” But that learning does not have to be technical skills only; it could be management and leadership skills. Do you agree with Steve Jobs who implies that the only way to lead is by example? Watch the video and think for yourself. (Here’s a young Steve Jobs giving the best advice on hiring, success and failure)
To me, the real question isn’t how to *measure* employee engagement. It’s how you know that an employee is engaged in a one-on-one interaction with that employee. That’s how a customer will judge whether to work with a company. (The Importance of Employee Engagement)
Social media *can* be an essential tool in recruiting. (Social Media Goes to Work – Is It An Asset or Liability?)
A perspective on how to build a good team. (How to Build the Perfect Team: Q&A with Award-Winning Author & Business Coach Nancy Butler)
And, as with everyone else, create forward-looking agreements; review and change them with a consistent frequency. (Here’s How To Manage All Those Millennials Entering The Workforce)
Leadership & Management: On Team Building Activities
Ultimately, the Work itself is the best team-building activity. Ideally, team-building must be built into the normal day of working and doing business. If the existing team culture is dysfunctional, doing “team building activities” will only highlight the negatives as the difference between “the way the team is working” and “the way the team *should* be working” become starkly clear. (Step away from the Lego! Four reasons why ‘team building’ can damage teams)
Having said that, here are some activities you can try. TIP: Don’t start any of these games with, “we are going to play a game.” Instead, get their attention ([clapy hands] “hello, everyone…”, for example) and launch straight into the instructions and see what happens. (Awesome Team Building Games Your Team Won’t Hate)
Sales, Marketing and Branding
#6: Don’t innovate just your product and hope that the market will understand what you are offering. Innovate the whole packaging that includes your *marketing message* and your product or service. (5 Tips To Become The Innovator Of Your Industry)
Disclaimer: This is not a product endorsement by any means; I have not used this product for myself or for my clients. BUT, it brings to mind a class I have often taught on what a salesperson and her manager can put on their “dashboard” to get a real-time snapshot of how they are doing, both as a salesperson (the salesperson’s perspective) and as a sales team (the sales manager’s perspective). The five benchmarks in this article are similar to what I have found to be important. TIP: Keep track of these things the old fashioned way at first, with pencil and paper, before jumping in and spending time and money chasing down the rabbit-hole of automation tools! (Sales Performance Benchmarking 2016: How does your sales team stack up?)
I think feeling better is always better than feeling worse. Anxiety is a form of fear; feeling anxiety or fear does not help in selling. A sense of relaxed confidence – not arrogance or cockiness – is the best way to be in selling. If you do feel anxiety before a sales event, however, you may need to find a coping mechanism and maybe even leverage it. (Could Sales Anxiety Be Your Secret Weapon)
A periodic table of apps for sales and marketing teams! (The Most Powerful Apps For Sales And Marketing Teams)
Operations, Product Development & Customer Service
How do these lessons apply to *your* business, even if you are not in the online retail business? (3 Customer-Centric Lessons from Amazon)
Contrast “Breaking Down Barriers,” “She’s Got Your Back,” “I’m with Her,” and “Stronger Together” against “Make America Great Again.” A message is the most important piece of any consequential undertaking, whether it be a political campaign or a business organization. In my experience in working with businesses, this is one piece of strategy that does not get enough attention from business owners and they suffer dearly because of it. A political campaign is a much more terminal reminder of how important it is to have a message – a narrative – that tie all its pieces together. A failure is much more public and visible in a political campaign. It may not be so in a business where it could be dying a slow and painful death and the owners will not know why unless they looked at this crucial piece of strategy: their core message. (Has Hillary finally found her voice?)
‘Til next time,
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