Empowering Moxie

Do you have Moxie? Do you write educational, informative, motivational articles or blogs that you would like to cross promote? If so, then please send me an email at m.kleinberg@verizon.net with your email and web address so i can review and I’ll send you a content permission letter.

 

definition of moxie

Here you will find stories, blogs, advice from some of my favorite business leaders, thought leaders and motivational speakers to help you reclaim, reveal, reinvigorate YOUR Moxie!

 

Our first contributor is my dear friend, Monica Wofford, CEO of Contagious Companies, who I met several years ago at an eWomenNetwork Conference in Dallas.

7/18/16 Is Employee Engagement Cost you Performance?

engagement

If you are making excuses for why employees aren’t performing because your focus is on engagement, it’s costing you.  If you still hold them accountable while fostering a healthy interest in their own role and their own performance, this is the ideal solution. But, which do you really think you’re doing?

A quick Google search of “employee engagement” nets over 8 Million results, so clearly, engagement is a hot topic. The real hot question is are these efforts netting you even hotter results and higher levels of production? And if not, how do you fix that? There’s a good chance senior leaders would answer this question differently than front line management because of the perceived difference between coddling and nurturing team members. Yet, with these three ways to determine if your employee engagement comes at the cost of employee performance, you’ll be able to identify it, address it, and make small changes to keep employee interest without it costing a mint!

You Have No Time

It’s no secret that managers have limited time to complete their own work, especially when an employee problem is lurking. Heaven forbid you have more than one difficult team member if your midst! If that’s the case, you’ve got time for nothing else, but that feeling is dangerous. Your role as a leader is to be strategic, to think, and then to lead the team to execute and implement on the ideas and improvements and solutions you’ve either created or been given. If you have no time to exercise influence because you’re in the weeds in repeated discussions with someone over why and how, and if, they should show a real level of interest in their role, your focus may be in the wrong place. Focus on those doing their role exceptionally well. Focus on the performers and think of ways they could perform even better. Deliver swift and clear escalating consequences to those who are performing not so well and draw clear boundaries when it comes to the amount of time you allow yourself to be mired in drama and difficulty.

They Have Frequent Reasons

Let’s face it, usually in business and with reference to performance, REASONS are code for excuses. If the employees you lead are giving you frequent reasons for not getting their work done, you may have taken your own interest in their engagement a bit too far. If employees are consistently not meeting deadlines, giving you a litany of reasons why, your desire to keep them happy may be costing you plenty! This is where senior leadership, often with a bit of distance from you and your employee’s rapport or relationship, can spot and quickly identify coddling versus nurturing. Your role as a leader, of any level is to of course, connect with each team member, as well as set expectations for their performance. Doing what has been asked or something even better is the minimal expectation. Deviations from that require immediate coaching. The coaching will actually improve engagement by building their skills and indirectly then building their confidence. Letting them slide with their reasons for deviating only serves to distance them from engagement and reduce their actual performance for longer periods of time.

Others are Complaining

If you’ve been a leader for more than five minutes or even worked on a team with a problem employee on it, you know just how quickly the poor performance of one whiny, grumpy person can wreck performance for everyone. If others are complaining about the lack of production, results, quality, efficiency, or effectiveness of the role of just one person, there is trouble brewing. Ignoring this issue because you want to keep this employee happy is a mistake. Making your own set of excuses for this employee because you don’t like conflict or haven’t found a delicate way to tell them how far off track they’ve become, is a problem. Both actions may look like you’re a laid back leader who simply “let’s things go”, an admirable trait for a happy go lucky person, but both actions also show a disengaged leader who’s out of touch with whyy the numbers are really declining. How can you expect employees to engage if you’re disengaged from their problems? How can you expect performance to soar if you’re unwilling to address the team’s apparent barriers? If others are complaining with a consistent message, it’s time for you, the leader, to focus more on your own engagement and address the issue, even fix it, so everyone can get back to work.

Our focus in leadership can be compared to a pendulum swing. One year it’s all about being a certain type of leader. The next it’s about authenticity. The next it’s about employee engagement. The truth is these focal points take priority all the time and the art of keeping employees interested, while you’re serving their needs, and celebrating their high levels of performance, does take a bit of artful balance.  You can do this!

7/10/16-Getting Your hands Dirty

dirty hands

Leaders roll up their sleeves and get their hands dirty, unless, of course, they believe they’re beyond that level. And that belief could exist for a number of reasons. But, no matter the reason for believing one no longer needs to go back to the basics or do the things those brand new team members need to do, when a leader feels this way, their behavior often resembles arrogance. Worse yet, it rapidly launches a leader into a place where they are woefully out of touch with those they lead. So rather than simply walk around where others work and rather than ask questions so you have an idea about what they do and need, complete each one of these three simple tasks to keep you grounded in real leadership, in touch with those who need you to lead, and in leading more effectively. (And yes, even if you’ve already heard these or have done these before, much like a garden that requires the gardener to get in the dirt and nurture each new seed if they desire new growth, chances are you’ve got a new seed or two that need you, too.)

State Your Expectations

Start with you and state what you expect to yourself of yourself and of others. More than writing lovely sounding words on a plaque or public banner, when a leader actually clarifies and states his or her expectations in a variety of areas, all team members gain clarity of perspective and direction. What ARE your expectations on work ethic, punctuality, management of conflict, team work, integrity, and/or customer treatment? Assuming they know because you’ve said them before is like telling your spouse you love them on your wedding day, but never again, and assuming they still know.

Want to hear more from Monica? Subscribe to her newsletter at http://www.contagiouscompanies.com/ 

 

Do you have Moxie? Do you write educational, informative, motivational articles or blogs that you would like to cross promote? If so, then please send me an email at m.kleinberg@verizon.net with your email and web address so i can review and I’ll send you a content permission letter.

 

definition of moxie

Here you will find stories, blogs, advice from some of my favorite business leaders, thought leaders and motivational speakers to help you reclaim, reveal, reinvigorate YOUR Moxie!