Strengths

Designing Your Leadership Vision

Greetings friends!

In his book Design for the Real World, famed author and design philosopher Victor Papanek noted that "design is a conscious and intuitive effort to impose meaningful order. Design is both the underlying matrix of order and the tool that creates it."

This is a reminder that leadership is not just about processes, data and decision making. Great leaders must show some "heart and soul" as well as technical skills, for team members to follow them. 

Effective leaders are intentional about designing workplace eco-systems where employees are made to feel like full-fledged members of an exclusive club. To design these kinds of environments, leaders have to know and understand the talents of each team member. 

According to one Gallup survey of employers, people who use their strengths every day are six times more likely to be engaged in their work and three times more likely to say they have an excellent quality of life.

They also have to surround team members with systems and processes that support the amplification of those talents. This is where creative team design results in the establishment of group culture. 

To see how design "intentionally shows up" in great leaders, listen to Simon Sinek in this fascinating TED Talk from 2015.

If you are interested in getting leadership and team coaching through OVP Management Consulting Group, let us know by clicking on the Contact Us button. We strive to provide our clients with the Optimal Value Proposition (OVP) for their consulting and coaching needs.

Have a great and productive week!

Establishing Trust

My favorite part of being a leader is coaching and guiding people towards personal and team success. In fact, I believe how a leader "leads" is one of the most critical metrics for success in organizations. 

Yes, being responsibile for projects, budgets and processes is important to being a successful leader in any environment. But, being able to help people realize their potential and offer a system by which they can measure their own progress is quite satisfying.

For clients of OVP Management Consulting Group, we stress the idea that coaching is a process of observing a team member's behaviors, comparing those actions to a set of agreed upon standards and talking about how best to achieve those standards. To do this effectively, leaders have to develop trusting relationships with their teams. 

One of our individual clients is a mid-level manager for an internet content hub. She oversees a team of about five writers with varying degrees of professional experience.

One of her big challenges has been to find ways to help each of her direct reports find ways to gain new insights about how they do their jobs in a fast-paced, ever-changing industry where clicks are currency and a premium is placed on producing "fresh" content. 

We recommended that she consider restructuring how the team meetings are run.

Leadership Meeting Image_091417

Specifically, we suggested that the manager carve out a section of time during their weekly staff meetings, perhaps 20 minutes, dedicated to the sharing of new ideas on how best to reach the team's goals. And to ensure that this new structure isn't viewed as a "mandated" process, we've encouraged our client to let her team design the meeting and lead it themselves.

Our client recently noted that members of her team seem to be more willing to bring up issues about how they do their work that typically don't get surfaced in other meeting environments. We believe investing in her employees by paying attention to them and actively listening to employees fosters a level of trust that is necessary in a leader/employee relationship.

Thus far, our client has been able to gain greater insights on how her employees prefer to engaging in solving problems. We believe this is an important step in the process of leaders developing a coaching philosophy or methodology. 

Here are some other tips you might want to employ to improve your coaching outcomes with your teams:

  • Consider alternating the leader of each staff meeting
  • Get agreement on the structure of staff meetings with input from the team
  • For meeting 15 minutes or less, have a "standing huddle" where participants stand around the team activity board or whiteboard
  • Always recap the "to do list" at the end of meetings to ensure you have agreement on assignments and deadlines

Have questions about how to become a more effective leader/coach? Interested in learning ways to get the most from your teams? We would love to work with you! Just go to www.OVPConsulting.com and click on Contact Us. Someone will get back to you quickly!

 

 

Empowering People Purposefully

 

Change takes on many forms in life. Whether we're talking about the changing of a tire on a car or changing the business model of a company, change is a necessary process for growth. But for effective and transformational change to happen in organizations, people and teams have to be empowered to execute.

Some of you will remember I referenced the Senn-Delaney Mood Elevator concept from the July 10th Thoughts on Leadership blog. In it, I said routine checking of "where you fit" on a continuum of moods, is a great way to assess your readiness to take on challenges. Leaders must encourage people that work with and for them to exercise their individual gifts and make recommendations for change.

By delegating critical activities and decision-making authority to team members, leaders are widening the scope of problem-solving possibilities. And once armed with the confidence of their bosses to bring their talents to bare, team members often bring insight, perspective and energy to the process of solving problems.

There's a great book by John Kotter and Holger Rathgeber called Our Iceberg is Melting. It is one of the best books I've encountered about implementing change management and the role each team member has in the success of the process.

The book is a simple yet profound example of how important it is for leaders to understand the talents and skills of their teams. Having that understanding allows leaders to more easily trust their charges with operational responsibilities.

 

One of the best ways I recommend leaders get that understanding of their teams is to understand each person's Signature Talents and how those talents show up in terms of being more optimal and less optimal. The good folks at www.34Strong.com call them Balcony and Basement descriptors. 

Looking to get leadership development coaching from OVP Management Consulting Group? Go to www.OVPConsulting.com, select Contact Us and send us a message. We look forward to working with you.