Pile It On!

During the last few weeks, people have seemed busier. New business opportunities are cropping up and people are responding with appropriate enthusiasm. One of my colleagues commented that work is flowing her way and she’s delighted with the influx.

Although leaders are thrilled with the inflow, the challenging aspect is managing it. This obviously flows downstream in the organization. Managers are complaining about their grouchy team members who are balking at the increase in work.

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May I Have Your Attention…Please?

Recently, CBS Sunday Morning featured a story on our shrinking attention span. Obviously, this is not a new topic; in fact I’ve been writing about it for years. That said, were a few takeaways and reminders worth highlighting.

Psychologist and attention span researcher, Dr. Gloria Mark, provided an interesting statistic. When her team researched attention spans two decades ago, on average the people in the study shifted attention every two and a half minutes.

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The Power of One Strong Goal

It’s that time of the year where you’re wondering what the heck happened to the year…how did it go by so quickly…. and … how am I going to complete everything that I committed to do in 2023?

Well, there are about 80 days left in this year. The biggest challenge is falling into the trap of trying to do everything that you didn’t accomplish all year. If you turn into a whirlwind, you might make a little progress on several things, but may end up feeling dissatisfied because you didn’t get a great result on an important initiative.

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Laser Focus

I received some great comments on last week’s column on “Think Time.” Although it’s a relatively simple concept, it isn’t that easy to implement consistently. Over time, tight schedules take over and people forget about it, schedule over it, or procrastinate doing it.

The comments triggered a good segue to a directly related theme. One of the factors that differentiates top performers from everyone else: they stay focused on the result. They think about how their work can have the greatest impact on the result. This is an example of think time in action.

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The Influence of Experts

Hank is a talented practitioner and emerging leader who is expanding his professional practice into a business. The business is growing, but Hank is frustrated by the pace of growth and the obstacles that cross his path. As confident as his outward persona is, he experiences periods of self-doubt.

This isn’t at all unusual; in fact, many of my clients have had similar experiences. As Hank and I dug through what he perceives to be the obstacles to his success, I learned that he has been strongly influenced by some prominent business “gurus”.

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Relax – Relate – Release

I once knew someone who worked at my local library branch who had a Zen-like response to annoying people. Janey had a mantra, which was, “Relax – relate – release.”

When she shared this with me, I was immediately drawn in and wanted to know more about this 3-step mantra. Had she gone through customer service training? Did she read about this in a book? Perhaps she had seen something on the internet?

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From Doing to Leading

At one time or another, entrepreneurial leaders face the challenge of transitioning from “doing the doing” to leading their organizations. Over the years, many of my clients have passed through various stages of this transition, and frankly, it’s not an easy one.

The challenge comes because many entrepreneurial leaders think that no one can do it as well as they can. Their mindset is that it’s their business, they put in the hard work and sweat, and they know what’s best.

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The Emotionally Intelligent Communicator

I attended a meeting of an organization whose board I serve on. I was in the back of the room, and seated behind me were two disgruntled people who were loudly dissing everything that was reported during the meeting.

During the Q&A portion of the meeting, these people went a few rounds with the moderator of the meeting, until one of them stood up and shrieked an acerbic comment. After this drama, she declared, “I’m a communications professional and I know I’m right.”

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