Take charge of the talent challenge in 2023! Discover extraordinary leadership ideas and concepts with THE BEST BOSS EVER newsletter by your side.
(659 words = 5.1-minute read)
# 1 – Notice How Work is Changing… Study what’s happening – notice the good and the bad.
# 2 – Change the Way Your Team Works… Clarify the organization’s purpose and the expectations you have for them to be outstanding team members.
# 3 – The Art of Leadership Is Not Changing… Lead people to embrace change and improve.
Three New Ideas
Have we gotten too concerned about providing work-life balance, flexible work models, and reducing job pressure/stress? It is hard to push for ‘more’ when you are concerned about turnover. But your organization needs more creativity, innovation, problem-solving, efficiency, and effectiveness. And your team needs to do more with less. You must find ways to inspire and motivate them to create synergistic ways to accomplish more. It’s time to push and pull!
# 1 – Expect More, Not Less
Have you seen people who work the same way they have always done it? It’s hard to motivate them to change! Maybe you have tried to motivate them to work faster and heard: “I’m already working as fast as I can; more pressure just makes me more overwhelmed!”
So, what is a leader to do? Back off, be supportive, and have empathy for how hard their job is and how much stress they have. In some cases, this is what is necessary. However, expecting less doesn’t make your team better. Great leaders inspire and motivate their teams to be better, and they “call them to greatness” (Cy Wakeman).
This may seem counterintuitive but don’t shy away from it. Start with a renewed commitment to your organization’s purpose. Who can resist an engaging purpose? It is a privilege to work toward fulfilling your organization’s purpose; inspire them with purposeful work.
Second, hold your team accountable to develop a winning mindset – don’t accept mediocrity. This is the leader’s job, and it’s uncomfortable as hell! It’s not enough to expect people to do the work; you should also expect a winning mindset. Teach them not to yield to dead-ends, failures, or frustrations. Eat complexity for breakfast! Rise above it!!
Ask Yourself: How have I let people off the hook for doing and being more?
# 2 – Play Against a Clock
Ever ‘time’ your workout? Maybe you only have 20 minutes – no time to waste. You focus more. Work more rapidly. Do you start your workday thinking you have a lot of time? It’s a universal truth that work always expands to the amount of time you give it.
You get less important stuff done if you are casual about your day and let things steal your focus. But if you hyper-focus at times throughout your day, you will be surprised how much you can get done. If your team knew it was playing against the ‘clock’ (like a two-minute offense), they could be more productive.
A way to create a ‘clock’ is to establish stretch goals. You should practice helping your team get comfortable with being uncomfortable as it relates to doing the impossible and attempting to accomplish something they may have thought was unachievable.
Ask Yourself: What helps me hyper-focus? How could I set up more ‘clocks’ for my team?
# 3 – Clarify What You Are Paying For
Few job descriptions clearly define roles and responsibilities or don’t clearly describe job outputs. If a person doesn’t know what they are getting paid to produce, how can they be successful? Create more clarity about acceptable outputs but don’t stop there; help them understand what will happen in the process of creating big outputs: “You will be challenged by enormous complexity, there will be failures, you will be frustrated and upset at times. You are on this team to produce and to have a great mindset. It won’t be easy, but it will be fulfilling. I will help, support, and encourage you. Let’s do something great together!”
Ask Yourself: How can I establish clearer expectations, including the sacrifice, and why it’s worth it?
Want to Know More?
1. Reality-Based Leadership – Ditch the Drama, Restore Sanity to the Workplace, & Turn Excuses into Results by Cy Wakeman
2. Mastering the Winning Mindset: How to Achieve Success in Any Area of Your Life by David Miller
3. To Get Results, the Best Leaders Both Push and Pull Their Teams by Joe Folkman – HBR
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