Tuesday, September 27, 2011

TLC for You and Me

“When you don't know that you don't know, it's a lot different than when you do know that you don't know.”

- Bill Parcells, ESPN Analyst, Former NFL Coach (b.1942)

Football season is back! It is an exciting time of year for sports fans, as hockey, baseball and football are all available for our viewing pleasure! Bill Parcells is quoted this month because his Sunday pre-game commentary reminded me of what I call TLC for You and Me. It was as though he’d heard me speak or gotten inside my brain. I don’t know, and since I don’t know where it came from, per his quotation, it is a lot different than if I did know that!! So, regardless of what the reason, thanks, Mr. Parcells for reminding me of a worthwhile tip to share this month!

TLC is often thought of as Tender Loving Care, and I appreciate that. For me, TLC is about personal and professional success, and it stands for:


Whether it is your family, a sports team, or your work team or business, to be confident in what you know, and get to where you are driving forward to learn what you don’t know as you strive to succeed, you must have the right people handling the things that suit their skills and interests (Talent), the direction and passion to go out and make changes where needed and keep things the same where they are working well (Leadership), and all be working toward the same goal for the same reasons with a common brand and definition of a "win" (Commitment).

As you move forward finishing out the 3rd quarter, take a look at your roster, see who is playing on your team, is the TLC apparent? Do you have the Talent, the Leadership, and the Commitment to get to your goals and make it a winning season for your household, your league, your group or your business? Tweaking the TLC, and letting everyone know all three areas, Talent, Leadership and Commitment combine to be the base that will determine your results, will surely assist you in knowing you are the champions you can be!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Emotions at Work...

“All learning has an emotional base.”
- Plato, Ancient Greek Philosopher He was the world's most influential philosopher. 428 BC-348 BC

Emotions at Work…

Would you agree that often Emotions + Office/Work = Awkward, Uncomfortable, Unpredictable Situations?

When people are express emotions, they are often deemed “emotional”. Is that fair? Is that true? When we are passionate, would we like to be labeled emotional? Likely not.

So, when are emotions appropriate at work or in the office? Or, are they? I say they are appropriate when directed at the common goal of the company or cause, when they are inspirational and inclusive rather than threatening and excluding. Think of emotion as drive, and emotional actions as something different.

In other words, harness your emotions to create a direction and a will to get something accomplished. Spend time, share ideas, get into the nitty gritty from the emotions that compel you. Please do not rant, expect others to agree, and not support something if it is not exactly what you want. The former actions are those of a leader, and someone who is mature, and the latter portrayal highlights immaturity and lack of leadership.

If you, or someone on your team has been considered emotional, please take a moment to reflect on how to re-engineer the emotional perception into the emotional command of the leadership that can result from a passionate person, and see how Emotions + Office/Work = Learning & Success!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Listen More Slowly...

“To listen well is as powerful a means of communication and influence as to talk well." - John Marshall

Do you ever feel like listening is a pain, time-consuming, or just something you are “not good at”? If so, you are likely driven, high-energy, and possibly slightly (I am being kind) impatient. That’s okay, it got you where you are today. If you want to connect further, learn more, and even offer value in how you converse from the listening side, please consider these tips for what I call “listening more slowly” to others:

-Take notes
-Consider the topic and not the person
-Imagine you have to “buzz in” before responding, so that you make a physical motion before opening your mouth
-Ask what or how questions for clarification (watch your tone) before offering your view
-Agree with a person and disagree with an idea (no attacking someone…especially by name)
-Share what you perceive the person is stating and ask if you are on-track prior to sharing an opinion
-Let someone know you would like time to process it (if you have nothing kind to say or you want other information)
-Remember, you are listening to learn, not just listening to respond

By even focusing on listening in a positive way (not saying “I’m just not a good listener”) , your efforts will pay off in improvement. Then, if you incorporate one or all of the tips/tools above, you just might hear something you really like!!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Say It...Even When It's Uncomfortable

"Silent gratitude isn't much use to anyone."

~ G.B. Stern, British Novelist, (1890–1973)

Have you ever wished you had the right words, timing and impact? While it would be wonderful to think each of us knows exactly what to say, when to say it, and how to say it, that simply is not true.
When it comes to compliments and recognition, unstated appreciation does not do anyone much good.
If you are not sure how to say something, consider:
- Leading with the person's name
- Saying something like "Even if this is a bit awkward..." or "While I wish I had exactly the right words...", or "Even though this may seem like it's coming from left field..."
- Sharing the compliment or recognition briefly without a comparison to anyone else or how someone did it in the past
- Moving on quickly by no longer talking about it

How many times have you seen, heard or experienced something done well, and you simply are not sure how to address it, so you don't address it at all? Let that be a thing of the past, and know it is okay to be unsure, and even better to be someone who shares positive happenings with others!