3 Time Management Tips So You Can Get The Right Things Done

Do a weekly review of the past 7 days

Learning how to do a weekly review is one of the best time management habits for you to develop. Go through the following steps:– First, review your calendar for the past week and the current week – look for loose ends, meetings and other matters that need further attention.– Second, review your email inbox (personal and company email accounts) and achieve inbox zero.– Third, review your goals for the year and make plans to work on them in the coming week.This practice will help you to better plan your schedule and avoid nasty surprises.

Plan to achieve four hours of real work per day

Did you know that project managers often assume people will be less than 100% productive per day? It’s true! You may have a standard eight hour work day but the reality is that only half of that day is likely to be highly productive.The rest of the day will be taken up with meetings, responding to email, browsing the Internet and related activities. Tip: Schedule your most important, high value tasks in the morning, before you get tired.

Focus on a single task at a time (i.e. no multitasking!)Multitasking is a wasteful way to work. Instead, you will achieve more if you choose one activity at a time. For example, allocate one hour in the morning to work on a proposal for a client, then give yourself a short break.

Delegate. Delegate.

Source: 20 Time Management Hacks I Wish I’d Known Before My 20s

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What You Can Do To Engage Employees

Image courtesy of Gallup

Remarkably, employee engagement has become a topic in business because, well it has become a topic in business. Rather than perpetuating the oft repeated mantra, “Our people are our greatest asset” companies react to engagement rather than act. Meaning, employee engagement becomes an issue only when the bottomline dips. Imagine your business really like a family. No really. Bad managers are more likely to proliferate your company than bad employees. Improve your managers and you will improve the quality of your people not to mention improve customer satisfaction.  Here are a few tips from Gallup.

Here are some steps larger companies can take to boost engagement in their workforces:

  • Establish effective feedback systems. Large companies often struggle with the top-down flow of information from leaders to the front line. The problem gets worse when the information needs to flow uphill. To meet employees’ information needs and ensure that workers feel that leaders hear their opinions, companies need to establish working channels to gather feedback from all levels of the organization.
  • Some leaders have an open-door policy, and this can bolster employees’ perceptions that their opinions count. But unless the organizational culture truly embraces employee feedback — and workers feel managers or leaders won’t punish them if they share information — employees will probably share their opinions with one another but not up the line.
  • Create opportunities for employees to learn and grow. In small companies, employees often take on multiple roles. As companies grow, employees need more information about their opportunities for learning and growing. Working on different projects or project teams allows employees to contribute their talent in different ways, helping them build their skills and internal networks.
  • Managers are the key to helping employees develop. A manager needs to understand his or her employees’ development goals to help them cultivate their talents by creating a development plan.

Source: Engaging Employees: Big Companies Need the Most Improvement

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Managing People Is So Old Fashion; Lead Them

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At the outset, I am a self confessed protagonist when it comes to leadership. Especially that banal aspect of managing people. Dogs are managed. People are like cats. They aren’t. In fact I suspect andy person capable or desiring management of leadership isn’t worth their wages.

People want to be led not managed. Therein lie the problem in business. The subtle coercion of “My way or the highway.” Or the other dictum of impotent heads masquerading as leaders when questioned why?, “This is the way we have always done things around here.” Here are a few ideas below from Entrepreneur you can use to turn things around. Jim

You can’t fake it.

Managing people doesn’t mean having a “work” persona and a “non-work” persona. I’m sure you know people who are completely different outside the office. You might see them at a function or dinner and think “Is that the same person?”

Management, or more accurately, leadership, is all about being your authentic self. That means not trying to be something you’re not. It means being comfortable with who you are and leaning on your strengths to manage effectively.

One of the best ways to build relationships with the people on your team is to actually mix your work and non-work personas. And to do that, you need to be your authentic self.During your meetings, you need to talk about any work issues, but you can (and should) also sprinkle in topics such as what you did on the weekend, questions about employees’ kids, last night’s game or your favorite new restaurant.When your team does a great job, get them out of the office and do something together as a group that has nothing to do with work. Go bowling. Have a dinner party.

Source: 4 Things About Managing People I Wish I Knew When I Started

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5 Ways Body Language Can Improve Employee Engagement

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How important is body language to communication? Well, how important is engagement with your people. Better yet, what does body language say about the trust level in your organization and relationships?

Joe Navarro, Body Language in Psychology Today  on the subject of Body Language writes, “So what is psychologically behind all of this? Simply this: Our needs, feelings, thoughts, emotions, and intentions are processed elegantly by what is known as the “limbic system” of the brain. It doesn’t have to think, it just reacts to the world in real time and our bodies show how we feel. Someone gives us bad news and our lips compress; the bus leaves without us and we are clenching our jaws and rubbing our necks.”

Rhett Power In Inc Magazine offers these insights: “Consider these five body language secrets to better engage others and help them feel both heard and secure.

The importance of eye contact is basically Body Language 101–and yet many still seem to struggle with this concept. However, you may be the best listener and conversationalist in the world, but if you can’t look someone in the eye, you are sending a wide range of messages–everything from nervousness to boredom to insecurity.

Establishing strong eye contact at the beginning of a conversation immediately communicates confidence and that you’re listening.  A good rule of thumb is to follow the cues of the one you’re speaking with to ensure that they are comfortable.

Appropriately placed head nods are a valuable way to communicate that you are listening and engaged. Coupling these gestures with occasional verbal affirmations is effective as well.

Messing with your shirt sleeves, playing with rings, checking your phone or moving it from hand to hand, tapping your fingers…

Source: 5 Body Language Tips You Need to Master | Inc.com Follow Joe here: @navarrotells

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20 inspirational teamwork quotes for the workplace

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By Jim Woods President, Jim Woods Group  @leadersmatter

Image courtesy of Inc

  1. Nothing  matters  so much to the value of a team than to add diversity of thought to the mix. Rabble rousers with placaters can create innovative ideas never generated by those who mistake groupthink for original thought.” Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  2. “The strength of the team is each individual member. The strength of each member is the team.”  Phil Jackson
  3. “I know half, and I know two guys who each know half of half, so together we’re altogether. Let this be a lesson in networking.”Jarod Kintz, This Book is Not FOR SALE
  4. Truth is when manager sets an example of servant leadership diversity of thought permeates the culture that applauds those who challenge ideas  for the individual and collective good. The good of the whole must still benefit the one.” Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  5. The single most important aspect of a team is diversity. Mix every aspect of the members to drive out albeit painstakingly the best ideas.”  Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  6. If you squelch the voice of the individual in a team or meeting  you create  culture of distrust which precedes disengagement reflected in eroding customer relationships.” Jim Woods,  Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  7. Communism stresses  the value of the whole over that of the individual. So do most teams in order to achieve solidarity. It is forgotten the value of stress on metal to gain its strength. Which is why their best thinking is seldom if ever achieved.”  Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  8. “Trust is knowing that when a team member does push you, they’re doing it because they care about the team.” Patrick Lencioni, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable
  9. “Remember teamwork begins by building trust. And the only way to do that is to overcome our need for invulnerability.” Patrick Lencioni, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable
  10. “Great teams do not hold back with one another. They are unafraid to air their dirty laundry. They admit their mistakes, their weaknesses, and their concerns without fear of reprisal.” Patrick Lencioni, The Five Dysfunctions of a Team: A Leadership Fable
  11. “I’m all for all for one, especially when I’m the one. That’s my philosophy when the dinner bill arrives at the table.” Jarod Kintz, This Book is Not FOR SALE
  12. “It’s as simple as this. When people don’t unload their opinions and feel like they’ve been listened to, they won’t really get on board.” Patrick Lencioni
  13. “If two heads are better than one then why are committees so ineffective?” Jim Woods, President Jim Woods Group
  14. “Collective systems or teams tend to subvert individual rights. I guess an example would be communism compared to capitalism. When one thinks in terms of the team over the individual  remember how the decision of a team promulgated the Iran War, the sinking of the Spanish Armada with King Philip at the helm and the most recent …. the self immolation of Nokia whose managers sought self preservation  in groupthink to avoid the very things they fire their underlings for.” Jim Woods, president, Jim Woods Group
  15. “It takes two flints to make a fire.”  L. Alcott
  16. “If two men on the same job agree all the time, then one is useless. If they disagree all the time, both are useless.” Darryl F. Zanuck
  17. “In a team setting, leadership is shared by a community of people, which counters the tendency for pastors to form congregations in their own images.” Adam S. McHugh, Introverts in the Church: Finding Our Place in an Extroverted Culture
  18. “Teamwork: I love the idea of all for one—especially if that one is me.”
  19. “The best part about teamwork, is me collecting all the prize money. Hey, that’s what captains are for, right?” Jarod Kintz, A Zebra is the Piano of the Animal Kingdom
  20. “Linked together as a team with one goal, we soon realized we were only as strong as our weakest link. But did we condemn the weaker member? That wouldn’t serve any purpose. Instead, the stronger guys responded by carrying more weight than the weaker teammate. Encouragement was key in reaching the top of the stadium, standing as one. Sometimes one person on your team may not be as strong as another. Strengths usually differ. Likewise, in an encounter with another, someone may have a different set of beliefs or ideas.To accomplish any goal, embracing the strengths and weaknesses of each member and compensating where necessary are the best ways to make it to the top.” Jake Byrne, First and Goal: What Football Taught Me about Never Giving Up

Please share on social media if you found this post helpful. If you have a comment or question, please post and add your voice to the conversation.

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9 Strategies For Improving Employee Engagement and Strategy

 

motivating employees

 

By John Stoker

Here are a number of tactics that you might decide to adopt to reverse the feelings of negativity and help the folks to refocus their efforts during these times of unrelenting chaos.

  1. Change Your Perspective – If you don’t understand or support the changes that your organization is implementing, then you had better take the time to become a convert.
  2. Learn From Your People – Discovering what is not working and why allows you to address challenges in a more timely fashion.
  3. Identify The Needs Of The Individual – I think it is safe to assume that most people come to work looking to perform adequately and not intentionally mess something up.
  4. Be Enthusiastic – Your people will reflect the tone and demeanor that you display. If you are positive, energetic, and enthusiastic, then they will also adopt your demeanor. Don’t accept ongoing negativity.
  5. Offer Frequent Encouragement – I have been told repeatedly over the years that, “No news is good news.” In other words, the only time a person’s manager may speak to them is when they have messed up.
  6. Set aside your needs – We often become so busy or wrapped up as managers that we don’t recognize the needs of others. Others’ needs are really your needs. If those that work for you are not successful, then neither are you. Take the time to offer assistance and support.

Source: Lead Change Group | 9 Tips For Creating A Positive Change In Your Culture

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5 Business Strategy Questions Every Effective Leader Should Follow

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By Freek Vermeulen

If you can’t find time to think, it probably means that you haven’t organized your firm, unit, or team very well, and you are busy putting out little fires all the time. It also means that you are at risk of leading your company astray.

When you do so – and you should – here are five guiding questions that could help you reflect on the big picture.

1. What does not fit? Ask yourself, of the various activities and businesses that you have moved into, do they make sense together? Individually, each of them may seem attractive, but can you explain why they would work well together; why the sum is greater than the parts?

2. What would an outsider do? Firms often suffer from legacy products, projects, or beliefs. Things they do or deliberately have not done. Some of them can be the result of what in Organization Theory we call “escalation of commitment.”

3. Is my organization consistent with my strategy? In 1990, Al West, the founder and CEO of SEI – the wealth management company that, at the time, was worth $195 million – found himself in a hospital bed for three months after a skiing accident. With not much more to do than stare at the ceiling and reflect on his company’s present and future, he realized that although they had declared innovation to be key in their strategy, the underlying organizational architecture was wholly unsuited for the job. When he went back to work, he slashed bureaucracy, implemented a team structure, and abandoned many

Source: 5 Strategy Questions Every Leader Should Make Time For

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Are you assertive enough to be an entrepreneur? #business #management

Courtesy Entrepreneur Magazine

The most successful leaders tend to find a good balance between being too assertive (and possibly aggressive) and being too nice.  Assertiveness forms the ability to  act in your own self  interest in the assignment of “No .” Assertiveness can be linked to confidence.  You want to be a leader who is both steel and velvet.  Michael Hess in the Entrepreneur Magazine article below over insights on hoe his can make you more effective. It begins with trust. JW

By Michael Hess

I’m bad at saying no–a terrible problem to have in business.Making people happy has always been among my highest priorities, a point of pride. I don’t do it to be a hero; I don’t even do it for gratitude (though as my grandmother might have pondered, Would it have killed her to say thanks?). I do it because I think it’s right and good. But one of the hardest lessons I’ve learned in more than 20 years of running businesses is that the need to please can be a real handicap, and that it is, in fact, possible to care too much.

Don’t get me wrong, I will never stop believing that a desire to make customers, employees and stakeholders insanely happy–and building a culture that facilitates that–is the highest calling of business ownership and the richest soil for growing a successful company. But the nuances here are desire vs. need, as well as understanding the differences between happiness, satisfaction and approval.Where the trouble starts is when you feel that you must make someone happy or satisfy whatever wish or need they may have or, worst of all, elicit approval of your actions.

Source: Being an Entrepreneur Means That Sometimes, You Just Have to Say No

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5 Ways To Create a Workplace With More Engaged Employees

Image courtesy American Express Open

Regardless of position leaders managers continue making the same mistakes when it comes to developing an effective team.

Like minded people create like minded  results. See Nokia Effect.

Add diverse people in race, ethnicity, challenging opinions single, divorced etc. You want  to avoid the  common results of teams which is groupthink.

Forgetting That Your Team Is Made Up of People

It’s easy to get caught up in the “million things to do” and “I’m so busy” trap. Everyone is too busy these days. But when you’re leading a team, taking the time to check in with them is critically important. After all, they’re the people who get things done in your company.

Fix Suggestion: Consider setting up individual, once-a-week check-ins with each of your employees or, if your company is too big for that, with each of your direct reports. You may think you don’t have time for this, but trust me on this one, you probably do—and it will likely pay off big time for your company.

Source: The 5 Worst Leadership Mistakes (and How to Fix Them) | OPEN Forum

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Feedback: Focus On The Goal Not The Person

By KEN BLANCHARD

As a manager—or a parent, coach, or any other kind of leader—you want to get rid of bad behavior but keep the good person. To do this, you must give feedback frequently—this goes for catching people doing things right as well as noticing mistakes or poor performance. It makes no sense for a manager to store up observations of poor behavior and present them all at once at the end of a project or during a performance review. Not only would this be frustrating for the manager, it would also put the person receiving the feedback on the defensive.Re-directing behavior as soon as possible allows the manager to deal with one behavior at a time. It also allows the other person to focus on constructive feedback and how to correct the problem, instead of being overwhelmed with information about numerous mistakes or misbehaviors that happened long ago.For the manager, the most important part of the re-direct is remembering to build people up, not tear them down. Confirm the facts, review the goal, and explain specifically how the behavior didn’t support the goal. End the re-direct with a praising: this lets the person know they are better than their mistake. A re-direct should never be perceived as a personal attack. You want the person to be aware of and concerned about what they did, not feel mistreated.

Source: How We Lead | Conversations on Leadership with Ken Blanchard

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