Managing is a Team Sport – Park Your Ego at The Door

You and I both know that there are a number of ways to accomplish the same task. The more that you allow others to be part of the process; the more likely it is – that they’ll be interested in the results. It shouldn’t be just your way – solicit their input. Always keep in mind that you need others a great deal more than they need you. You’re going to look pretty silly trying to manage things by yourself. Remember – Managing is a team sport so park your ego at the door.

Worth Remembering … “Drop the idea that you are Atlas carrying the world on your shoulders. The world would go on even without you. Don’t take yourself too seriously” – Norman Vincent Peale

Now don’t get me wrong – it’s important to have a “healthy” ego. Trust me – I have enough ego to fill up any room I walk into. (After all I’m the ultimate Control Freak) My ego has never been in short supply but, I’ve also come to know that too much ego can become a weakness. It’s like stress. A little stress in your life is not necessarily a bad thing. Without a little stress in our lives we’d turn into couch potatoes and would never be motivated enough to do anything. But we also know that too much stress in our lives can be unhealthy. I think of ego the same way. A little ego gives us enough self-confidence in our own abilities to want to step up and take on a certain tasks or roles. However, if you have too much ego you may volunteer to take something on that you aren’t totally prepared for and then have too much pride that you won’t admit that you’re over your head.

Worth Remembering … “Bury your ego. Don’t be the star. Be the star maker” – Bud Hadfield

No one is successful by themselves. You are only as good as the people around you. Learn to build collaborative teams and establish partnerships. Both our Men’s and Women’s Olympic Gold Medal winning hockey teams didn’t start winning gold medals and world championships until we changed our way of thinking. Years of coming up short by stocking our teams with superstars and letting them do their own thing – independently of each other wasn’t getting the kinds of results that we expected. It wasn’t until everyone on the team parked their ego’s at the door and committed themselves to playing a team game did we find success. It wasn’t until everyone on the team committed themselves to playing a team role – did we start to win.

Worth Remembering … “Desire for approval and recognition is a healthy motive but the desire to be acknowledged as better, stronger, or more intelligent than a fellow being or fellow scholar easily leads to an excessively egotistic psychological adjustment” – Albert Einstein

Think of your ego as an outward expression of your internal thoughts. Your ego is a combination of self-esteem and self-confidence. If you are deficient in ether one it will express itself in the way that you act and treat others. Managing is not about being right. Managing and leading is about doing all you need to do to accomplish the task and reach the goals you’ve established for your department or business. If that means letting others have a say – and incorporating some of their thoughts and ideas into your plan – then do it. And if it means letting them do it their way – then that’s what you need to do. As long as it gets the desired results – on time and on budget – then it makes no never mind how it was accomplished. If that requires you parking your ego at the door – then so be it. πŸ™‚

* (c) Copyright 2012 – Brian Smith – Reformed Control Freak. Not to be reproduced without written permission.

Think it, Act it – You’ll Eventually Become It. You Can Have The Life You Want

Einstein’s definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting a difference result. You have to change the input to change the output. You’ve got to develop new habits. A good habit is a good result – plain and simple. (Of course the opposite is also true – bad habits produce bad results) We are adults and we can develop new habits. All we have to do is stop doing one thing and start doing another – and if we do it often enough – it will become us. Behaviorist’s suggest that if you do something twenty-one times in a row – you’ll have developed a new habit. I think for the most part that we are born with a blank slate. And that we learn to behave a certain way to get a certain result. Now if that’s true – then the way we act is a learned behavior. And if you agree that it’s a learned behavior – then that means we can unlearn it and replace it with something else.

Think it …

I’m not going to get too deep here – but your internal dialogue (What you say to yourself) has everything to do with how you react and act externally. If you feel sad – you’ll look sad. If you feel happy – you’ll look happy. Attitude – Your attitude is everything! You are whoever you think you are – it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. If you think you can or can’t – you’re absolutely right. If you think you can’t – then you are beat before you start. David knew he could defeat Goliath. He had faith in his own ability to pull it off. You need to believe in yourself. You need to believe that you are capable of doing whatever you set out to do. You need to believe that you can have the life you want.

Act it …

You need to start acting in a way that is going to get you what you want. What new habits do you have develop to get the kinds of results you need? What do you have to stop doing and start doing to accomplish what you set out to do? Do you need to learn how to communicate and interact more effectively – manage your time – cope with stress – solve problems, deal with difficult people and challenging situations or expand your circle of influence? If you are going to change the habit to change the result then you need to decide what new habit you need to develop. Once you’ve decided what you need to learn – then all you need to do is start doing it. It’s never easy to change – but you can change if you truly believe that you need to – that you need to change in order to have the life you want.

You’ll eventually become it …

Practice, practice, practice. Be patient – it takes time. But, the more you do it – the better you’ll get at it – and the better you get at it – the more you’ll do it without thinking about it. It will become ingrained in you – it will become part of you. Everything we choose to do alters our brain and it fundamentally changes who we are. Dr. Richard Restak, neuropsychiatrist and clinical professor of neurology at George Washington University believes it’s a process that continues until we die. The human brain has the ability to reprogram itself. All of the new research on the brain suggests that no matter how old you are, it’s never too late to change your brain for the better. Your brain doesn’t break down over time. The brain has a lifetime capacity for learning new things.

You can have the life you want …

You don’t have to settle. You can have the life you want – the life you imagined for yourself. If you are mentally and physically capable of doing and becoming who you really want to be – then the only thing standing in your way is you. All you have to do is learn how to get out of your own way. Stop doing one thing – and start doing another – and if you do it often enough – it will become you. Remember – You may have developed a certain way of behaving at a very young age but it doesn’t have to dictate where you end up or who you become. – Cheers. πŸ™‚

* (C) Copyright 2012 – Brian Smith. Think it, Act it, You’ll Eventually Become it – You Can Have The Life You Want – is the title of my soon to be published self-help / personal development book. Stay tuned

Three Questions with Van Heerling

I jumped at the chance to be interviewed by Van Heerling – Author, Blogger and Entrepreneur extraordinaire. (I’m not one to pass up the opportunity to see my name in print) The results of that interview where first published in Van Heerling’s Blog in August / 2012. (www.vanheerlingbooks.com) If you missed it – I’ve posted the link here for you. After you’ve had a chance to read the article – take a moment and put yourself in my shoes. If you were asked these same three questions – what would you have said? – Enjoy πŸ™‚

http://www.vanheerlingbooks.com/4/post/2012/08/three-questions-with-van-heerling-my-guest-today-is-brian-smith-briansmithpld.html

Life Lessons – How to Get Along with People Even if You Don’t Like Them 5

Rarely can you accomplish all that you set out to do without the help of someone else. You don’t have to like the people you work with but you do need to learn how to get along with them. “Soft-Skills” or emotional intelligence as Daniel Goleman likes to refer them too – is a learned behavior.

Worth Remembering …

“A common core of personal and social abilities has proven to be the key ingredient in people’s success, emotional intelligence” – Daniel Goleman

Understanding yourself well and studying the behaviors of others allows you to improve your performance in relationships, both at work and at home. Your technical ability no longer guarantees success. Results of a study conducted by the HayGroup – a leading authority on emotional intelligence, shows that for most jobs that involve working with people, EQ (Emotional intelligence) is twice as important as IQ. Sixty-seven per cent of the competencies needed to manage or lead people effectively are emotionally based. (Often referred to as soft-skills – our ability to communicate and interact effectively with others)

Worth Remembering …

“In organizations where people trust and believe in each other, they don’t get into regulating and coercing behaviors. They don’t need a policy for every mistake … people in these trusting environments respond with enormous commitments and creativity” – Walter Wriston

Establishing a relationship built on mutual respect and trust is a process all humans have to go through when they meet someone for the very first time. We take direction from and hang out with people we like. Trust and respect do not come automatically – you must earn both – one person at a time. You must learn how to get along with people even if you don’t like them. Success is a team sport. Just like it takes a village to raise a child – it takes a team to manage and lead an organization. Think of someone you are having difficulty with – for what ever reason you two aren’t getting along. (This could be someone at work or at home) I want you to take on this challenge and turn that situation around. I want you to apply a 3-step process known as the 3R’s – I promise you’ll be amazed at how effective it is in establishing those all important relationships.

Step One: Rapport: Find out something about the other person other than the work they do. What are their hobbies? – Are they married? – Do they have children? – What do they like to do in their spare time? The easiest way to establish rapport with someone is to get them talking about themselves. Ask questions – get interested in them and then they will be interested in you.

Step Two: Relationship: You can’t have a relationship with anyone that you haven’t first established a rapport with. The more that you can carrying on a conversation with them on subjects that they are interested in – the more likely you are building a relationship with them. You are beginning to break down the barriers between you and the other person. You are starting to like each other.

Step Three: Respect: You won’t respect anyone that you haven’t developed a relationship with first. Respect is reciprocal. You have to give it to get it. The more that you treat someone the way you’d like to be treated the more likely it is that they will respond in kind. You get back – what you send out.

After respect comes trust. You never trust anyone you don’t respect first. If you have established mutual respect in your relationship with the other person, then they will trust you. They may not always agree with you – but they will respect the fact that you have an opinion and you have a right to express it. So go out and give it a try – You’ve got nothing to lose – but a whole lot to gain. – Hey remember – You can trust me πŸ™‚