Carol Blair recently spoke at a Toastmasters Leadership Institute event that I attended.
She outlined 5 FANTASTIC leadership goals:
- Pursue purpose with passion
- Practice solid values
- Lead with your heart
- Establish lasting relationships
- Demonstrate self-discipline
- What do you think of this list?
- Would you add anything to it?
If you are an up and coming leader, this is a great list to focus on. If you are a well established leader, hopefully this helps take your “leading-abilities” to the next level.
You can find Carol at:
This is VERY true!
Have a fantastic weekend.
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My first job out of university was with Enterprise-Rent-A-Car. It was high paced, non-stop action role that keeps me running all day. Most days I did not believe that we could take care of all the customers, but we did. Things just always worked out.
Part of our jobs was washing cars. On the surface anyone should be able to wash a car. But in that business, the key was to wash it quickly, but still make things spotless.
I worked for several Branch Managers and Assistant Managers during my 2+ years with the company, and they were each different. They got similar exceptional results, but the way they each lead and managed was unique.
But there was one commonality. They would never hesitate to jump into the car wash and clean a vehicle at a moment’s notice. I was once told that you just “tuck your tie in to your shirt so it does not get wet, or sucked up in to the vacuum“, and just GET IT DONE.
They would also do many other tasks that were not on their job description like pick up customers, and start cars when it was colder than -30 degrees celsius!
These people stood out for me as true leaders. It would have been easy for them to sit in their offices, shuffle paperwork and pretend that they were doing more important things then help customers be completely satisfied with their rental experience, but that was not in their DNA. They were there to help, no matter how crummy the tasks were, all in the name of “just being one of the team”.
Even though it was over 15 years ago that I washed my last car at Enterprise, I still think back fondly of the lessons learned – and there were many of them.
But the best lessons learned taught a shy, stuttering young kid how to be a leader. How to never put myself ahead of the team, and how to never put myself on a pedestal too high, that I could not help out people who really needed me.
- Who were the best leaders that you have worked for?
- What made them a cut above the rest?
I never thought being an assistant coach for my son’s six-year-old hockey team would be easy, but there is more to it then I thought!
I have learned many leadership lessons from the experience, and here are my favourites:
- Patience – Many of these kids still sleep with teddy bears. They are very young and their development takes time
- Encouragement – “High-Fives, pats on the back, and a “great job” goes a long way for their confidence
- Focus On The Positive – We tend to focus on what is being done wrong, that we sometimes forget to reward what is being done right
- “Sandwich Method” – Put a suggestion for an area of improvement between two positive comments
- SMILE – Then laugh with them, and make them feel comfortable. It is truly about having fun, developing skills, and learning what it means to be part of a team
As I was writing this, I realized many of these points can be related to managing in the corporate world, or business in general. At least, I thought I could inspire other coaches who may need some new perspective!
If kids are not inspired by their coaches, there are many other activities that they can do these days. Each interaction with them is critical to building that connection.
Is it time to tweak your coaching, managing or general leading philosophies?
Another fantastic post by Dan Rockwell – aka the “Leadership Freak”. Check it out and have a wonderful day.
Dan Rockwell, aka “The Leadership Freak” had me at “Dumb and Dumber”! I love the premise of this post, and how it relates to always trying to find answers. Enjoy and have a fantastic day!
I have heard a couple of incredible interviews recently with hockey coaches. I immediately thought of the parallels to leaders in the business world. It seemed like an opportune time to repost this article on a professional hockey coach.
I was driving home from work one day last January and heard an awesome interview with Jeremy Rutherford from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch on the Team 1260 Sports Radio in Edmonton. The discussion focused on the new coach of the St. Louis Blues, Ken Hitchcock, and the team’s amazing turn-around since his hiring.
Highly regarded professional hockey coach Ken Hitchcock was out of work for some time when the St. Louis Blues hired him in November, 2011. He had a reputation throughout the National Hockey League as a disciplinarian for many years, and lead with a “my way or the highway” approach. He had a history of conflict with young players who were having trouble adapting to his style of play.
By the time he took over the floundering yet talented Blues hockey club, the positive change in the team was almost instantaneous. At one point in January of 2012, they were on a 21 wins, 6 losses and 2 overtime losses run. The team’s fans and casual observers were impressed with the team’s turnaround, but not totally surprised based on Hitchcock’s history of success.
When Jeremy Rutherford was asked about Hitchcock’s most recent success, his answer was simple and to the point,
He adjusted his coaching style to cater to today’s players. There is still accountability, but the players are not afraid to make one mistake and then have their butt stapled to the bench for an extended period. Two veterans who had previously played for Hitchcock gave the players a head’s up of what to expect from their new coach.
Rutherford described a potential scenario,
“You make one mistake, no problem. You make a second mistake, no problem. You continue to make the same mistake; the coach and player are going to have to find solutions.”
The part of the radio interview that impressed me the most discussed that Coach Hitchcock had studied all 30 teams for several months while he was unemployed. He was preparing for his next opportunity, and waiting for the phone to ring.
Two things stood out for me about this message:
- He was not just sitting at home waiting for the next job to fall in to his lap
- He had the positive belief that another role would come his way, and it was only a matter of time
- Have you ever observed a sport or business team make a remarkable improvement after a coaching or management change?
- Can you pinpoint specific reasons for the improvement?
David Kanigan is one of my favourite bloggers out there. Check out these fantastic steps to leadership excellence!
- Be strategic. Be Tactical. Be a firefighter.
- Push for productivity. For excellence. Pull. Pull with PURPOSE.
- Set pace. Drive. Pause. Stop. Change. BALANCE.
- Build Relationships. CARE. Keep adequate distance.
- Learn. Coach. Nurture. Correct.
- Hire. Upgrade. Right-size. Fire. (sigh)
- Lead. Manage. Own. Delegate. Follow. Release.
- Show Strength. Be Resilient. Be Tough. Be Fair. Be compassionate. Admit weakness.
- Cheer. Rally. Celebrate. Recognize. Recover. Regroup. INSPIRE.
- Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. Be on. BE ON.
Some sales reps are harder to fire than others! Check out this short video to see why…
The “push to 400 is on”….
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Make it a tremendous weekend!