by Monica Wofford
We proverbially “pack a bag” when we lead others. But what you pack in your bag makes more of an impact than you think. And some of these tools just might not be the first things you think of…
Of course, mistaken outsiders might even think that leaders should bring things like:
and Control ontheir leadership trip.
But whether or not these items are appropriate for a leader to take with them on their mission, they all are certainly predictable. Take a quick look at some of the unlikely tools that SHOULD definitely make it into any leader’s go-bag.
In fact, these should probably be kept in an outside pocket for quick access and use!
5 Unlikely Tools For Your Leadership Bag
Your Sticky Notes
Use these for the things that you want to stick. More of a symbol than paper with a purpose, let sticky notes remind you to reduce your expectations to just those few words that fit on a mini-note. Make your message one that stands out and sticks like these do not only on their computer or wall, but to how they behave overall.
Perhaps these simply sit on your desk as a reminder to point out when employees are at their best. Some will need the excitement that pom-poms bring and others will simply need you to quietly say thanks when they do great things.
You’re not going to do a cheer, but nor are you striking fear by yelling in this cone or using that “manager tone”. Your megaphone can sit in the corner, but let it be your reminder that what you don’t say, they can’t hear or understand and telepathy is highly overrated.
Your Mute Button
Sometimes you’ve said enough and no amount of further explanation will change what they think. In those times, hit the mute button and take the time to listen.
As is said in Contagious Leadership:
“Those you lead are closer to the problem than you are” and have valuable data to share that you want to hear.
In your office or on the field, figuratively or physically built, you need a bench to remind you of many things. Sometimes it serves as a place to share and be the guide on the side. Sometimes it’s a reminder of the team on which you take pride. And finally, it’s a symbol, as the strength of your bench is about the team you develop.
Your leadership “tool kit” contains a wide array of things, but sometimes it’s the small symbols and reminders that keep you sharp. They help you to remember it’s PEOPLE you lead even when things are moving at high-speed and your list is far longer than the time you need.
Monica Wofford, CSP, is CEO of Contagious Companies, Inc.
She serves her clients by getting business results and ROI for training functions
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