Coaching to Become Better by Jim Johnson

coaching

Will your team get better just because they show up for work?  Doubtful.

Coaching is the only, sustainable way to improve your team.  Of course, your team needs training and communication, but coaching is the only way YOU, the coach/manager/leader, will be able to enable them to become better.

As a leader, you cannot rely on other leaders to improve their teams to compensate for weaknesses on your team.  Each team leader must dedicate themselves to team improvement.  Then, as a whole, your company becomes better.

Improve your coaching and you help your team members become better.  Then your team becomes better.  Your company (and your customers and communities) become better.

That’s a winning combination.

 

Voice vs. Vote by Jim Johnson

Every day, decisions are made at organizations everywhere.  In some companies, a select few are chosen to make the decisions.  In other organizations, more of a team approach is taken.  And there are plenty of examples of everything in between.

Your team members need to understand how decisions are made in your particular company, and they should understand what role they could play in the decision-making process.

I call the the Voice vs. Vote understanding.

If you serve in a company that allows team contribution during a decision-making venture (i.e. bringing on a new vendor, new software solution, etc.), be sure you are doing the following with/for your team members:

  1. Be on their side.  Actually, breakdown the “sides” and help them know their input is important to share.  And have them share it in the appropriate channels.  Ask for and expect open communication and the flow of ideas.
  2. Encourage them.  I’ve seen team members complain about a process but they offer no input into that process.  Encourage them to get involved!
  3. Give power to their voice.  Get them on a project where their experience and expertise are needed.  Expect collaboration.  Tell them that their voice needs to be heard.  Help connect them to the right people during a decision-making process so their voice is heard.
  4. Help them succeed.  Don’t assume your team member knows how to voice their opinion into a decision-making process.  Show them the way.  Help them succeed – even if their idea is not acted upon.
  5. Help them understand.  The decision-making process, recommendations, and letting go are critical for your team to understand.  Do not assume they already know how the “powers-that-be” operate.

Hopefully at your organization, everyone has a voice.  But as I explain to my team, not everyone gets a vote in the end.  But the voices during the decision-making process are vital for great decisions to be made.

speak up

 

Do You See Your Team? by Jim Johnson

Do you see your team? Do you see them as people, individuals?  Do you make personal connections with them?

Or do you see them merely as a position or someone to get something done for you?  When we do this, our staff, as human beings, can feel invisible or not valued. 

If we take the time to get to know our teams as individuals who have hopes, dreams, needs, and aspirations, I believe our teams will become better teams. As we work to connect with them on a personal level, our professional connections deepen as well. They will see that you are working to add value to them not only as an employee but as a human being. And when that happens, they will be more dedicated and more willing to buy into our vision.

Years ago I had the honour to be on the USS Nimitz – a nuclear aircraft carrier in San Diego. I had the privilege of meeting Captain Mark Manzier and hear how he interacted with the 5,000 to 6,000 men and women who served with him on that ship.

Every day he would connect with the crew in different ways and in different places. One day he met a young man and asked who he was and where he lived back home. The young man told him and then explained to the captain that his wife had just had their first baby. The captain asked if the baby was a boy or girl and learned the name. 

Later the captain was in a meeting with his commanding officers. And he asked the commanding officer who was over this young man, “What recently happened in the life of this young man can you tell me about it?”  I was told by another officer that in these circumstances, the superior officer had better have a good answer for the captain.

The captain built-in accountability into his lead staff. He found value in his leadership team knowing about the personal things that we’re going on in their crew’s lives. The captain also found value in making that personal connection himself. As the captain explained it, “There will be times when we go into battle and I will call on these men and women to do things that they naturally would not want to do. At that point of decision, they need to know I have their best interest in mind and that they trust me.”

Today, make a personal connection with your team. I’m not asking you to become their best friend. But I’m asking you to personally invest in them. Do you know what their family life is like? Do you know about their kids? Their hobbies?  Their interests?

Be intentional about “seeing” your staff.  

W.A.I.T Why Am I Talking? – A Better Meeting Guide by Alan O’Rourke

We have all been at those meetings. The ones where people talk for the hell of it and without thinking. Before you know it the meeting is over and nothing is decided, much less discussed.

Less is definitely more when it comes to meetings. The smart people know what to say, when to say it and keep it concise.

Inspired by a note I spotted in the occupied office I have designed a handy flow chart for your meeting room that might keep things on track.

Find out more about Alan, see his flow chart on this topic, and reading more great content by following this link:  http://workcompass.com/w-a-i-t-why-am-i-talking-a-better-meeting-guide/

 

 

why am I talking

Coaching – what happens to YOU when your team gets better through your coaching by Jim Johnson

If you lead a team, you are coaching (or, at least, I trust that you are).  I just gave a presentation this morning on why coaching is so important for our team members.  I also shared the following on what happens to the COACH when he/she becomes a better:

  1. Your reputation improves in your company.
  2. Your influence expands on your team and in your company.
  3. Your voice/opinion is respected on your team and with your colleagues.
  4. Your future will reveal more opportunities for you.

There is no down side to working hard at becoming a better coach.  Yes, your team members will become better, but YOU have benefits when you commit yourself to becoming a better coach.

Remember:  “You influence from a distance.  You impact up close.”  Dwight Robertson

Commit to impact.  You will create a better world around you.

when leaders become beter

Flawed People

On my drive into work this morning, I heard the following:

“Flawed people can do great things.”

The speaker went on to share an example of King David from the Bible.  David was an incredible king.  He fought and won many battles.  He strengthened his kingdom.  He had passionate followers. Bible said that he was a “man after God’s own heart.”

But King David was also flawed.  Too often, he took matters into his own hands.  He had a wandering eye that led him to seduce a woman and then later had her husband killed in battle.  David suffered because of his flaws.  But he also did great things in spite of his flaws.

Today, I am grateful for grace that sees my flaws but still allows me to be effective.  I cannot ignore my flaws and shortcomings (there are many).  I must get better.  I must build on my strengths.  I cannot make excuses for my flaws.  But I must work to do great things.  My family is counting on me.  My team is counting on me.

I am not disqualified.  Neither are you.

flawed people