Would They Follow You Up The Mountain? 6 Ways to Inspire and Lead a Culture of Collaboration

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Good Leaders and Managers require a lot of self-awareness and self-motivation, however, Great Leaders know that their behavior towards others is crucial to employee engagement and commitment. You can provide employees with wonderful perks and benefits (dental!) but if you don’t empathize, listen, and provide a platform for others to be heard your team may start looking for someone who will.

Below are 6 ways that great Leaders help create and build great teams from our Expert Speakers

Give yourself a point for each one you execute on a regular basis and review your score at the end:

1. “I learned that you don’t inspire your teammates by showing them how amazing you are. You inspire them by showing them how amazing they are.” Firefighter Robyn Benincasa award winning Speaker on Teamwork.

2. “It’s nice to be important, but it’s more important to be nice.” John Cassis Speaker on Leading Change

3. “What we do is try to lay out for people that what we find to be fairly common sense in our personal lives – saying thank you and appreciating people – somehow gets lost in the course of normal business.” Chester Elton Speaker and Author of All-IN

4. “First, tell the truth. It’s simple and sometimes hard to do.” Marilyn Tam Speaker on Leadership and Diversity

5. “When you truly listen, you let go of formulating your response while someone else is speaking. Then, you can easily slip into his or her shoes.” Brian Biro Speaker on Change

6. “Most people are generally reasonable and can rally around an idea that wasn’t their own as long as they know they’ve had a chance to weigh in.” Patrick Lencioni Guru on Leadership

 

  • 6 out of 6: They would follow you over the mountain and every mountain after that.
  • 5 out of 6: They would follow you fairly close to the top of the mountain and want to go further.
  • 4 out of 6: They would follow you half way up the mountain and then give a serious think to going further.
  • 3 out of 6: They would slowly follow you halfway up your mountain but once there they are going to evaluate you and other mountains to climb.
  • 2 out of 6: They would listen to your idea about following you up that mountain, nod their heads, and when you are on the mountain they’ll email you.
  • 1 out of 6: It’s your mountain and you’re the one who wants to go up it, they’re leaving at 5 PM.

4 Ways to Engage Millennials in the Workplace

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With experts predicting that Millennials will make up nearly half of the American workforce in a few short years, Employers are banging their heads against the wall looking for new and effective tactics to engage and retain a notoriously uncompromising group of employees. Millennials are a very different generation than their predecessors and previous employee engagement initiatives are no longer viable.

Leaders cannot keep Millennials away from the general workplace population – positioned behind closed doors and large computer monitors. The digitization of almost every sector of business is unavoidable and our Speaker & Generational Expert Cam Marston points out that because of technology, for the first time in history the youth hold the keys to the functioning of modern business – striking panic into the hearts of organizations across the country. However, to engage (and consequently retain) them you have to challenge them – Managing Social Media and Webservers will simply not suffice for this energetic and ambitious generation. Millennials can (and demand to) do more.

Here are 4 approaches to engage Millennials in the workplace and how to use their specific talents to your advantage:

Research

Millennials are amazing researchers. They live in the Information Age and can access and gather useful data with astounding speed. They also know which sources are credible and which are not – Millennials know not to cite Wikipedia or The Onion. Explain to them that their role is a key component to the foundation of a particular project and keep them in the loop as the project progresses – regardless of whether their skills are needed beyond the initial phase. Seeing how their efforts contributed to the overall project will make them feel like a valued member of the team.

Teamwork

Despite common perceptions, collaboration and teamwork is not a foreign concept to Millennials – in fact their education was largely built around group assignments – therefore they have the understanding and experience but may lack the finesse for workplace interactions. Exposing them to the particulars of workplace collaboration with multigenerational team members fosters a sense of inclusiveness and camaraderie. Furthermore, our Speaker David Stillman advocates for frequent multi-generational collaborative work as a means to give the younger generations a chance to learn from the Traditionalists and Boomers before they leave the workforce.

Feedback

Millennials have been labelled as “needy” because of their desire to be constantly evaluated (i.e. praised). This desire may be the residual effects from their education – remember Millennials have not been out of the post-secondary “bubble” for long. Giving feedback often will pacify this need and demonstrate that the organization has taken an interest in them. Our Speaker Lynne Lancaster explains that feedback will also give Management frequent opportunities to address problematic behaviors in an appropriate setting. When giving Millennials feedback be sure to always begin with something positive before addressing the areas where improvement is needed.

Change Management

Non-Millennials often refer to “bracing” for Change as though it was a tidal wave about to crash down on them. Change for Millennials does not cause trepidation, but rather excites and drives them. Assign Millennials to a project or taskforce that negotiates the ways in which transition and transformation will be approached within the organization. Their enthusiasm will be infectious and covert negative attitudes towards Change into positives ones.

Inspiring Influencers: 4 Habits of Dynamic Leaders

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Evaluation is a constant task for anyone in a leadership position. The best leaders, however, not only evaluate others, they also evaluate themselves on a consistent basis. Great leaders follow specific directions in order to keep their employees, their business, and themselves on the “right path.” Here are 4 of the most popular dos and don’ts of great leaders:

Do expect and prepare for Change. Change is inevitable but it doesn’t have to be frightening. Travis Bradberry argues that if you understand that Change will happen, you will be emotionally equipped and mentally prepared to handle any challenge in a productive way. This fortitude will set a great example for the rest of your team.

Don’t waste time focusing on things that are out of your control. Mike Abershoff astutely points out that leaders are too often fraught with worry by all the things that are out of their control that they forget to actually regulate what they can. Effective leaders are those who can quickly identify what is not within their control and choose to focus on what can be managed. The ways in which you engage with your employees is certainly within every leader’s control so why not spend time actively listening and communicating with people rather than obsessing over what cannot be changed?

Do fail. Failure doesn’t have to be seen as a setback. It is always a learning experience. Peter Bregman explains that failure can also make us more relatable, more compassionate, and ultimately more human. These traits allow us to forge more powerful relationships with those around us.

Don’t stop growing. Consistently “check” yourself and your role as a leader. Mark Sandborn recommends regularly asking yourself questions such as “Why do I want to lead?” “What kind of leader to I want to be?” and “Who will I follow?” These questions are designed to make you think about your own role within the team and how you can strive to be better. Always hold yourself to a higher standard.