2 Down, 10 to Go

Well, I hate to give you the news, but we are rounding the corner to complete the first two months of 2021. Is it my imagination, or has this arrived sooner than expected?

Time is obviously relative and depends on everything from your workload to family responsibilities to personal projects. The more you juggle, the more challenging it can be.

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Another Meeting?

Do you ever feel like you just can’t take one more meeting? People are becoming increasingly numb to them, especially those who are working remotely. The remote workplace has spawned more meetings, many of which are valuable check-ins for teams, while others are unnecessary wastes.

A lot of meetings were created in the early days of the pandemic for specific reasons tied to connecting with co-workers. Thoughtfully consider the relevance of these gatherings. The original purpose may have run its course and it’s time to “retire” it. Or, it may be time to repurpose, shorten, or reduce the frequency.

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Navigating Complexity

The recent announcement of Jeff Bezos stepping aside as Amazon.com CEO to become the firm’s executive chairman has captured much attention in the business press. Do you even remember that Amazon started off as “just” a bookseller?

I’ll leave it to others to describe the myriad accomplishments and innovations that Amazon has pioneered over the years. What this triggers, though, is how we can apply some concepts to our complex business environment.

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Listening Is Hard Work!

There’s no way around this: you need to work harder at listening when you’re not face to face. Generally, your people will tell you everything is fine….even when it isn’t.

For example, you may check in about progress towards a particular deadline and people will say that they’re on top of it.

Maybe they are. But maybe not.

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Unpacking Remote Management

Many of us are a good ten months into managing a remote workforce. Although some have done well and even flourished, others are stumbling. This can be frustrating, especially if you felt successful when you were together with your team in the office.

Work will eventually return to an office environment, but it will not likely ever revert to the way it was a year ago. The managerial skills that make you brilliant in the office are different than the ones you need to succeed remotely. And whether you return to a conventional office environment or stay remote, the skills to successfully manage remotely will serve you well.

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New Year, Fresh Start

Welcome to the new year where things seem more like “same old, same old” instead of new and fresh. Although we’re still operating in a challenging external environment, you can create new energy that can result in a fresh perspective.

The new year provides a metaphoric reset, so take advantage of this. There are numerous things you can do now that will not only set your direction, but will create a new tone for the year and help boost morale as a consequence.

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What Are You Willing to Tolerate?

It’s that time of the year when people make resolutions with the best of intentions for the year ahead. If you do this, good for you! If you can’t quite get to resolutions, though, there are other ways to reflect on the past and envision the future.

2020 has likely been among the most challenging you have experienced. Throughout the year, you’ve undoubtedly learned more about yourself than in other years. As such, you know more about what you’re willing to tolerate.

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Do You Really Know What You Want?

As you set your goals for 2021, ask yourself what seems to be an obvious question: Do you really know what you want?

I see this every year. People set goals based on their perceptions of what they think should be the right initiatives, when in fact, these ideas may be inappropriate. They aren’t considering what would work best for them and has a greater chance of success.

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How Are You Being Heard?

Isn’t it fascinating when you perceive that you couldn’t be clearer in how you communicated something and your co-worker doesn’t have a clue what you’re talking about?

Communication snafus like this happen every day, and sadly, some people think that the way to resolve it is to say the same thing over and over (remember the definition of insanity…). Instead, consider how you can rephrase or use an example to make your point.

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