Pushing Through The Glass Ceiling

shattered glassSuccess and being successful has nothing to do with gender, colour or social status. Success and being successful has everything to do with committment, hard work and a can-do-it-attitude. It’s nice to see that women all over the world are starting to push through the glass ceiling to take their rightful place managing and leading Fortune 500 Companies. Women are now out pacing men in starting small businesses. According to research  conducted by The Centre for Women’s Business – well over 10.1 Million firms in the USA are owned by women – employing more than 13 Million people.

“It may be the Cock that crows, but make no mistake that it’s the Hen who decides when and where to lay the egg” – Margaret Thatcher

Dee Dee Myers – author of “Why Women Should Rule The World” believes that women are more successful at running small businesses because women can make people accountable for their actions but, they can also be there to support them. “Females have that trait, where maybe most men do not”. What women seem to come by naturally is empathy – the ability to see things from another person’s point of view. An important 21st Century skill. Unfortunately most men still have to learn it. Mary Matalin, former counselor to President George W. Bush was quoted as saying – “Women around the World are rewriting history at a ferocious pace with or without mans permission”. It’s easy to argue that men haven’t been doing such a great job of managing things lately.

“Be selfish with your time. Learn to say no to things you do not have an interest in. You are not serving anyone when you spread yourself too thin. Your first obligation should be to yourself. You cannot be any good for someone else unless you are first good to yourself.” – Larry Winget

A very dear and close personal friend of mine likes to remind me now and again that she doesn’t need a man in her life to “complete” her. She’s capable enough to do that all on her own. After all – she’s be operating her own very successful small business now for over 30 years. She knows who she is and she’s not afraid to speak up and ask for what she wants. That’s one of the many qualities I love and admire about her. Men who feel threatened by that are neanderthals, still living in the past. They need to get over themselves and wake up to the realities of a new order of things where women have a seat at the table. It’s great to see that more and more women feel the same way. We are all going to be better for it.

Copyright (c) 2015. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Brian is available for workshops or keynote speeches on a variety of soft-skills topics. He’ll work with you one-on-one to insure your event is an overwhelming success. To find our more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization visit http://briansmithpld.com

Trust Me – If I Can Do it – Anyone Can

secret 4When you change the habit – you change the result. I know sometimes that’s  a lot easier said then done, but it can be done. You just need to want it bad enough to motivate yourself to make those changes. Trust me – if I can do it – anyone can. You are the only one who can change you. No one else can make you do something that you don’t really want to do.

Worth Remembering … “Once the “what” has been decided – the “how” will reveal itself”

What needs to change for you to reach your goals? For you to realize your full potential? Do you need to change what and when you eat so you can lose weight? Commit to an exercise routine so you feel better and look better? Do you need to open up a separate savings account and religiously deposit as little as 5% of your weekly pay cheque so you can afford to take the next big step and start your own small business? What’s your WIIFM?

Worth Remembering … “It is only when a person has their own generator that we can talk about motivation. He needs no outside stimulation. He wants to do it” – Frederick Herzberg

People are motivated to act a certain way to get a certain result. Needs plus goal directed behavior equals your payoff – your WIIFM. (What’s in it for me). If I have to do this to get that – and that is important to me – then I will do this to get that. Motivation is inside out – never outside in. You need to be convinced that there is a WIIFM in it for you or you won’t bother to make the effort.

Worth Remembering … “Think it, Act it, Become it. When you change the habit you change the result”

One of my goals for this year is to play better golf. I’m smart enough to know that I won’t get better by myself. The only way I’m going to get better is to work with someone who is better at it then me – to work with a coach. I signed up for winter golf school. So far I’ve changed my grip, stance and swing pattern. Has it been easy? Not a chance. Changing the way you do things to get a better result takes patience, committment and hard work. I know that things won’t get better until I do. I know I need to change the habit to change the result. What’s your WIIFM? What are you willing to change to get a better result? Trust me – if I can do it anyone can.

Copyright (c) 2015. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Are you – or someone you know – looking for a speaker or workshop facilitator who can entertain and inform on a variety of soft-skills topics? Give Brian a call. He’ll work with you one-on-one to insure your event is a overwelming success. To find out more about Brian and what he can do for you and your organization visit http://briansmithpld.com

Seven Valuable Leadership Lessons I Learned While Managing Others

millennials-200x192There’s been a great deal of discussion about the difference between managers and leaders. Do we manage more than we lead or lead more than we manage? Is there really that much of a difference between the really good ones to even bother trying to justify one over the other? I think 21st Century managers and leaders need to be both. The role of managing and leading is situationally based. Sometimes you manage – sometimes you lead – but the one constant denominator between both, is the people you work with and interact with. If you can’t communicate and interact effectively with others, then you stand little chance of doing either one well.

Worth Remembering .. “Leadership cannot simply delegate management; instead of distinguishing managers from leaders, we should be seeing managers as leaders, and leadership as management practiced well.” – Henry Mintzberg

To be successful at managing and leading others you need the ability to connect with people, communicate, educate and delegate effectively. You need to be FOCUSED (c).

F – Friendly: Smile, say hello, develop those all important relationships. You need to expand your circle of influence. You need to build collaborative teams. No one accomplishes anything inside a bubble.

O – Organized: Manage your time. Learn to prioritize so you accomplish what’s most important first. How you manage your time is how you manage your life.

C – Competent / Confident: Know what you know and know it very well. But also acknowledge won’t you don’t know and surround yourself with people who do. Some times you have to give up control to get control.

U – Understanding: You need the ability to see it from another person’s point-of-view. Be empathetic, open-minded and flexible. Your way doesn’t have to be the only way to accomplish the same thing.

S – Sincere: If you truly want others to be successful it will be evident in the way that you treat them. Treat others the way you’d like to be treated. People like to hang out with people they like.

E – Energized: Be passionate and enthusiastic about what you are doing and the direction you are headed and others will want to follow your lead.  If no one is following you aren’t leading.

D – Dependable: Whatever you say you’re going to do – do it. If others can’t trust your word – then they won’t trust you at all.

Worth Remembering  … “Not everyone wants to manage or lead others. But we all get to decide who we want to follow. Be the kind of manager or leader worth following” – Brian Smith

Copyright (c) 2015. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Are you looking for a speaker who can entertain and inform on a variety of soft-skills topics? Someone who can deliver on whats important to you and your organization. Give me a call – let’s talk. Find out about Brian Smith and what he can do for you visit http://briansmithpld.com

There’s No i in Team But There is in Win

Team Work“There’s no i in team but there is in win” – a great quote by Micheal Jordan. As good as Micheal was on a basketball court he still understood that you’re only as good as the team around you. The really great managers and leaders, like the really great coaches and players, understand that it takes a great supporting cast to accomplish your goals and objectives. No one succeeds in a bubble.

Worth Remembering … “Coming together is a beginning – Keeping together is progress – Working together is success” – Henry Ford.

The really great managers and business leaders are also great team players. They understand that everyone on the team has a role to play. It wasn’t until Hockey Canada adopted a different philosophy of choosing their team players – that they started winning Team Canada men and women’s olympic gold medals and world hockey championships.

Worth Remembering … “Each individual is a vital link in your chain. You or your organization are only as strong as the total sum of its parts.” – Brian Smith

What makes a good team player? If you had to put a list together of what it takes to be a good team player – what would you put on that list? Do you expect a good team player to be honest, trust worthy, fair, treat everyone with respect and be open-minded and flexible? If you expect that from a good team player are you prepared to do the same? Would you want you on your team? If you are going to do the “talk”you must do the “walk”. What is good for the goose has got to be good for the gander.

Copyright (c) 2015. Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Are you or someone you know looking for a keynote speaker who can entertain and inform on a variety of soft-skills topics? Call me. Let’s talk http://briansmithpld.com