Tag Archive - Communication

Why I Fired My Entire Team

Speak Up!  Please!

It was one of those meetings. Every time I brought up an issue or an idea, all I got was blank stares or nodding heads. Every time I tried to illicit feedback from my team, I felt as if I were pulling teeth. All I heard was crickets.

When I finally had enough, I looked at my high performing team and said, “You’re all fired!” There was a nervous laugh until they saw my face. I had a stone cold look I learned when I was in the Army.  The laughing stopped. Continue Reading…

I Know Your Motives!

I Know Your Motives!

I know why you said what you said!  I know why you did what you did!  I am able to diagnose your motives.  Because I believe I know your motives, I am sure you are the problem and not something else–like me!

These are all lies.  But, they are lies that we easily fall into.  I’ve done it.  I have been sure of someone’s motives.  Have I ever been right?  Maybe.  Continue Reading…

New Leaders On New Teams: 5 Key Steps

New Leader, New Team

I started my first team from scratch and it took us over two years to hit our stride.  My second team had a mix of experienced and novice members on it.  We took about a year to begin to fire on all cylindars.  The next team was pieced together from other teams.  The individuals were all tenured and successful but most had not worked together before. We hit our stride quickly.

The way a leader launches into leadership with a new team can often determine that team’s trajectory for years to come. Continue Reading…

How Leaders Create Email Hell

Email Hell

It’s like a sad Dilbert cartoon. A leader sitting in his office shooting email after email off to people he can see through the glass window of his office. It’s sadder when he has set up a culture on his team that he expects an immediate response to his emails.

Is this a Dilbert cartoon on leadership? Unfortunately it’s not. Over the last few years training and developing frontline leaders from multiple companies and industries, I hear tales about this form of leadership. But it is not really leadership. It is management. Continue Reading…

Teamwork: Rookies Versus Veterans

Rookies Vs. Veterans

“That’s not going to work.”  Every time my most experienced people said this, I cringed.  I had a team with eight veterans and four rookies.  I soon realized that our team’s experience was killing innovation.

Each time a veteran spoke, it hurt us or helped us.  Experience kept us from moving forward into new territory.   At times, experience helped us make wise decisions and other times it kept us from growing. Continue Reading…

When Is It Right To Quit The Fight

Why am I still fighting?

It was a good old knock down, drag out fight.  We had chosen our sides and were all vehemently sure of our positions.

In Patrick Lencioni’s The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, he expends 20% of his thesis on the need for healthy conflict on a team.  He says, and I believe, that without conflict it is highly unlikely a team is making the best decisions for an organization.

If this is true then by Lencioni’s scorecard, this was going to be a FANTASTIC decision!  But, in the midst of it all, I quietly raised my hand and gave in.  It was right to give up this fight. Continue Reading…

Three Things That Kill A Good Idea

Idea Killer

The death of a good idea is a tragedy.  Many individuals bring forward great ideas only to see them assaulted by three different assassins.

I have watched the assaults and done nothing.  Yet, I wondered why my team was stagnating and not moving forward.  I was asleep at the wheel.

These assassins were individuals, groups and/or processes.  All three were the result of an inattentive leader-me.  But once I learned how to identify these assassins, I was able to save some great ideas from the clutches of death. Continue Reading…

Strengths / Weaknesses – The Same Coin

Both Sides Are Me

I’m an idea guy.  I love to brainstorm and come up with ideas on how to make things better.  I am also someone who can ignore the details or forget about them quickly.

The more I work with leaders the more I realize I am not alone.  All of us have strengths that can also be our weaknesses. They are two sides of the same coin.  Our strengths often turn into weaknesses when they are misapplied or taken to an extreme.

Continue Reading…

Communication: To Speak or To Be Heard?

Goal:  To Speak or To Be Heard

If I just want to speak then no thought is needed.  I can just let her rip!  If I want to be heard, then I must pay attention to what words I say and how I present them.

I was reading an article on communication recently.  The article gave me some good tips for changing my style to meet the needs of my audience.

In the comments section, another reader felt that changing his style was a cop out.  He described himself as someone who did not hold back.  As a result, people saw him as too aggressive or even caustic.

Continue Reading…

3 Disciplines For Being Productive Versus Busy

Busy Bee

“Talent without discipline is like an octopus on roller skates.  There is plenty of movement but you never know if it is going forward, backward or sideways.”

-H. Jackson Brown

Me:  “Hey Laura.  How are things going?”

Laura:  “It’s been a busy week Dave.  I’ve been running non-stop since Monday.”

I always want to surround myself with talented high-energy people.  These people energize me.  But, they can also wear me out.  Why?  Because many believe that doing a lot of STUFF makes a difference.

Continue Reading…

Page 1 of 41234»