Why Women Will Rule the Economy of the Future – Jordan Weissmann 1

“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.  The numbers continue to tell the story. According to research conducted by The Centre for Women’s Business – more than 10.1 Million firms are owned by women – employing more than 13 Million people. Women are starting more small businesses than men and those businesses are more likely to still be in business five years after start-up. (These are American stats but the numbers indicate that women are outpacing men in Canada as well)

Gentlemen if that doesn’t get your attention than this article written by Jordan Weissmann  and published in The Atlantic should. If the past is an indicator of the future than women will eventually outpace men in earning potential. It has long been argued that those who stay in school and graduate eventually earn more.  Men are still being paid more than their female counter parts for doing the same job – but the number of female graduates vs. male graduates suggests that will soon change.

Women are staying in school longer and are producing more graduates than men.   Low paying – manual labour type jobs are disappearing for a number of reasons. Education is now king. Those that have it – will be in a better position to fill the higher paying jobs.   Mary Matalin, former counselor to President George W. Bush and Vice President Cheney was quoted  as saying – “Women around the World are rewriting history at a ferocious pace with or without mans permission”.  Yes Bob – “The times they are a changing”. Enjoy the read – Cheers, 🙂

Why Women Will Rule the Economy of the Future—in 1 Graph – The Atlantic.

Managers vs. Leaders – The Debate Continues 1

Do we manage more than we lead or lead more than we manage? Is there really that much a of a difference between the two to even bother trying to justify one over the other? A half-century ago Peter F. Drucker – who is considered to be the most influential management thinkers of all time – brought the practice of management to the forefront; and other notables have been trying to “one-up” him ever since. The debate will continue long after you’ve read this posting.

I’ve spent 40+ years managing and leading people, and based on my experiences I believe the two: managers and leaders, have more in common with one another – than not. They are  mutually inclusive of one another – not mutually exclusive of one another. The lines between the two are definitely blurred – if not disappearing all together.

“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

The role of Manager and Leader is situationally based. You must insure that the day-to-day tasks that need to get done to make the organization work are being done (that’s managing). But you also need to spend some of your time thinking about where the organization needs to go to stay competitive and to maintain or grow your market share (that’s leading). To be successful, Managers and Leaders need to be able to communicate, educate and delegate effectively if they are going to manage the day-to-day operations of the organization, and / or implement the changes necessary to take the organization to where it needs to go. And … in order to do either of those jobs well, they need a variety of skills.

Both Managers and Leaders need to be able to:

  • Problem solve and resolve conflict
  • Build collaborative teams
  • Teach and mentor
  • Communicate and listen
  • Plan and forward think
  • Be patient, empathetic, flexible and open-minded.

Henry Mintzberg is right. Forget about being a leader – practice managing well and people will want to follow you. You may have been given the title of manager, or people may refer to you as their leader, but if no one is buying into what you are saying or choosing to follow you – then it really doesn’t matter what title you have. – Cheers, 🙂

Is Your Cup Half-Full or Half-Empty? Attitude is Everything 6

Sir Winston Churchill once said “For myself – I am an optimist. It does not seem to be much use being anything else.” Do you walk around thinking that your cup is half-full or half-empty? I choose to see my cup as half-full. I choose to see the positives in everything that happens to me and around me – because I believe that everything in life is a learning opportunity. Even the negative things that happen to you, and trust me there will be plenty of them, are really positives if you choose to look at them from a different point of view. (It also helps if you believe in fate) I believe everything that happens to you in life – happens for a reason. Whatever happens today is preparing you for what is going to happen tomorrow. (It may not be obvious at the time as you are going through it – but you’ll be able to connect the dots looking back)

I am without a doubt the most optimistic person you’ll ever meet. But besides being an eternal optimist I’m also a realist. (I do have my Dr. Phil moments of clarity) I know that I can’t control everything that goes on around me. I know most outcomes are out of my hands. But I do know that I can control how I choose to react in any given situation. I know that in that space between stimulus and response that Dr. Covey talks about is choice.  I know that I must choose to react in a way that is going to get me what I want.

Everything you do is a choice. You may not like the choices that you have to pick from – but it is a choice. You can choose to do nothing – and see what happens – or you can choose to do something and hopefully end up with what you want. You always have a choice. Only you get to decide how you want to react to any given situation. Your attitude is 100% in your control. “If you change the way you look at things. The things you look at will change”.

The next time you are faced with having to make a choice try asking yourself:

  • What’s my WIIFM? What do I want the end result to be? (You’ve got to name it to claim it)
  • What do I want the other person’s response or reaction to be?
  • Is there a lesson here? What am I suppose to be taking away from this so I don’t end up doing it again?
  • What do I need to do to get what I want? How am I suppose to react?

Once you decide what you want – the how will reveal itself. So remember – the next time that you have to make a choice – take a deep breath – ask yourself a series of questions for clarity – and then react in a way that will get you what you want. Attitude – Your attitude – will make all the difference in the world. – Cheers, 🙂

There’s More to Listening Than Hearing 1

“In the industrial age, the CEO sat on the top of the hierarchy and didn’t have to listen to anybody … In the information age; you have to listen to the ideas of people regardless of where they are in the organization.” – John Sculley. Active Listening? What images conjure up in your mind’s eye when you hear that? Who do you think is the most important person in the conversation – the sender or the receiver? Active listening (receiving) is as important to communication as effective speaking (sending). If the receiver doesn’t receive the message the way it was intended then whatever was said means absolutely squat.

Active listening is described as a process in which the listener interacts with the speaker. Effective communication takes two. To really listen to what is being said requires mental and verbal paraphrasing and attention to non-verbal cues like tones, gestures, and facial expressions. (We communicate 93% of the time non-verbally – 38% by the tone of our voice and 55% by body language alone.) The next time you have an opportunity to listen try being actively involved in the exchange by developing/demonstrating these five skills to become a more active listener.

1. Restating and Summarizing: You should be able to restate what the speaker said and or summarize the discussion. The speaker should hear their own words being played back to them. (So what you are saying is …)

2. Paraphrasing: You are paraphrasing what the speaker said by repeating it as accurately as you can – using your own words. If you met someone in the hallway after the discussion could you tell that person what the discussion was about?

3. Non-Words: Listeners can show the speaker that they are listening by verbally and non-verbally acknowledging the speaker. (The Fraser Crane – Hello – I’m listening) Use non-words like “ah-ha – yeah – hmmmmmm – oh. Smile, nod and make eye contact.

4. Supporting Statements: Another way to verbally acknowledge a speaker is to use supporting statements. Examples include “Go on; tell me more, and then what happened?, OMG you’re kidding?

5. Non-Verbal Messages: Remember – We communicate 55% of the time non-verbally. Your body language is speaking volumes and you haven’t said a word. Your non verbal messages must be the same as your verbal messages so that the speaker feels that you are being sincere. People believe the non-verbal messages you send to be more accurate. Your verbal responses should include non-verbal responses such as: body angle and stance, facial expressions, arms, hands, legs and feet. Your body language should appear open and receptive. Put your hands down at your sides not across your chest. Rolling your eyes, yawning, looking around the room, looking down at your watch or tapping on the floor with your toe should be avoided at all costs.

We aren’t born good listeners but we can learn how. Try adding these five skills to your active listening toolbox. You’ll find out everything you need to know about the people you work with and interact with by actively listening. 🙂 – Cheers,