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How to Turn Chaos into Positive Chaos by Dan Thurmon

By Dan Thurmon | Jul 27, 2021 | Comments Off

"You Can Learn How to be More Confident and Comfortable in the Midst of Change"

What if CHAOS isn’t a bad thing? How can you harness constant change into a force for growth and opportunity? Dan Thurmon, author of Off Balance On Purpose, teaches how to excel in uncertainty and take confident action right now to create amplified, desirable future outcomes.
 

This is a challenging time for organizations and leaders to adapt and keep moving forward in the ever-changing chaos of the world around us. The one thing we have learned in the last year and half is that we can’t predict what’s coming next and many things are often out of our control.

 
Gain insights and tools to transform your C.H.A.O.S. from “Challenging, Hectic, Anxious, Overwhelming Stress” into “Challenging, Healthy, Aspirational, Ongoing Symmetry.”
 
Learn to see clear patterns in what now appears random, and take intentional action to shape them for your benefit!
 
When you apply these Positive Chaos principles to your personal life, your work and your world, you will be more confident and comfortable in the midst of change. You will be more resourceful and precise with the ability to succeed and lead others.
 

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How to Win with People with the Rule of Two by Ty Bennett

By Ty Bennett | Jul 22, 2021 | Comments Off


One of the most useful and practical strategies I teach leaders and salespeople to win with people is The Rule of Two. 

I was speaking for Anthem Insurance in California and at one of the breaks a salesman named Joe asked if he could share an insight with me. Earlier that day, I’d taught about focusing on being interested, not interesting, and he said it reminded him of a rule he made for himself years ago called The Rule of Two.

Joe told me how he was called out early in his career for one-upping other people. It was affecting how he connected (or didn’t connect) with others and it was undermining the influence he was trying to build. Joe decided to fix it and so he developed The Rule of Two. When someone says something about themselves, ask at least two questions before you say anything about yourself.

As an example: your good friend says they like boating – they just bought an expensive boat and they go every weekend to the lake. You may be thinking, “What a bragger, oh really, well I...” But then you stop yourself and remember The Rule of Two. you respond: “I bet your family really enjoys that. How did you decide on the right boat for the family? And what was your favorite family moment at the lake this year?”

Wow, how that changed everything! You felt great about being truly interested in your friend — your friend stopped his normal chatter and thought a minute about what was truly important about the boat and shared with you a personal moment with his family and experience. You made a connection that will not be forgotten, that could have been missed without using The Rule of Two.

Now think about doing that as a leader. Would you build stronger, long-lasting relationships by actually listening and responding from a place of interest? The next time you are heading down the road of one-upping, give Joe’s idea a try. Use the principle of The Rule of Two! 

 

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The 5 things to STOP doing if you want a better future. - by Phil M Jones

By Phil M Jones | Jul 19, 2021 | Comments Off

BLogHeader-PhilMJones

The daily choices and actions you make will inevitably shape your life greater than any external event.

Here are just 5 lenses that help me, have helped others AND could quite possibly help you too.

1. STOP looking for PRAISE and instead SEEK trusted feedback.

Sure, a compliment can add a warm, fuzzy feeling to a moment, but the relentless quest for acknowledgement is more likely to fuel anxieties and promote depression than genuinely build you up. Worse than this, is the people that you and I grant the power to influence your real life. Advice and opinions are certainly not the same things and choosing the specific individuals that can add perspective, experience and wisdom to help you shape your future is a discipline that can garner huge positive effects.

2. STOP counting your FOLLOWERS and SERVE the people that entrust you with their attention.

For full disclosure, this is still very much work in progress in my own world. Yet writing it down is just another process to help solidify a new habit. Ego is ever present and managing its power in a modern world is more challenging than ever. Businesses chase new clients, individuals are focused on meeting new people and success in a digital world is often validated by a quantity metric that is only ever satisfied when the never-ending objective of “more” is achieved.

Picture the difference you and I could manifest if that effort and attention was instead pointed at what already existed. Businesses obsessed about serving their existing relationships, you and I obsessed about the people we love that already exist in our lives. On social media, we all just got busy serving the people that have already clicked a button to commit that they are interested in what you have to say.

Just imagine how much more you could achieve with what is already within your reach.

3. STOP WORRYING about others and focus on your own HABITS instead.

The comparison trap is real. And adding to our deep-rooted desire to see how we fare alongside others is the other sabotaging human trait of judgement. When the focus is external, you can only ever follow your inquisition with feelings of disappointment or worthlessness.

A great mentor once shared with me the wisdom that if you are to ever compare yourself to anyone, you must compare the whole of you, with the whole of them. An almost impossible task, yet the very attempt has you quickly realising that your own progress lies in your own habits and any shortcomings you have versus others are almost always countered by a significant benefit you have by alternative.

4. STOP referencing the PAST as evidence that controls your FUTURE.

There are very few things in life I am certain of and one of those few things is uncertainty. I feel confident that nothing stays the same and what was once true is not necessarily true today. Life to me is like water. It’s fluid and ever-changing, and our choices become the vessels that contain said water.

It’s easy to avoid new choices and create conflict by stating things like “you said…” and “last time” as articles of evidence to support today’s decision making. The tough part is accepting that a thought or feeling in the past, is nothing more than a momentary opinion. Opinions can change through experience and allowing yourself to evolve your own opinions based on new experiences is key to your own organic growth.

To change your reality, you must first change how you think.

5. STOP CELEBRATING the finish line and start working on the STEPS.

Jeez this drives me crazy. I see it all the time and fail to understand why so many people make this choice. Achieving big things is typically hard work, yet too many people celebrate the outcome of the thing they are working on before they have done the work and as such, remove the possibility of the true celebration later. Further challenge from this set of actions is that the euphoric feelings of an early celebration are soon replaced with an anxious reality of what now needs to be done, without the pull of the future victory celebration to help you go the distance.

I remember a conversation with two dear friends in a bar in Boston, where one of them shared the old saying “It’s the second mouse that gets the cheese”. Think on that for a second. The vivid reality of a baited trap and the knowledge that the first mouse is likely to lose its life, and the more patient one gets a risk-free snack is a metaphor that may instil a little extra patience in how quickly you proclaim your next victory.

From achieving life goals with my family, career and personally – it seems to have served me better to put my head down and work on what needs to get done and save the real celebrations for when the real milestones are achieved. This as opposed to reaching straight for social media the moment a new idea is considered - a new venture is launched - or some good news hits my inbox.

Sometimes the applause can help you go the distance. Other times it can be a giant distraction that prevents you reaching your desired outcome.

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The Miraculous Power of Consistency by Mike Rayburn

By Mike Rayburn | Jul 19, 2021 | Comments Off

"What Is It You Could Begin to Do Consistently That Would Take You to the Next Level and Beyond?"

Wind and water moving consistently over the earth have done far more to shape this planet than all the blasting and earth-moving equipment we’ve ever invented.

Investing even a small amount of money every month consistently has built far more wealth and created far more millionaires than all the Vegas and lottery winnings ever.

The fact is, consistency is the most powerful human force on this planet.
And this is not a new concept. Aristotle famously stated, “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence then, is not an act, but a habit.”

A habit. A repeated action. Consistency.

Unfortunately, this also works in reverse.

Smoking consistently for years will ruin your lungs. Laziness, repeated daily for years will truncate your prospects in life.

If you’re reading this, you are successful. What is it that you have done consistently over the years to create your success?

And what is it you could begin to do consistently that would take you to the next level and beyond?

No discussion of mastery is complete without addressing fundamentals. All masters in any medium are first and foremost masters of fundamentals.

How do they master fundamentals? They work on fundamentals consistently.


So, if you are a leader of teams, and even for yourself, start here:

  1. Make a list of the fundamentals that are absolutely essential to mastery of your craft or medium. What are the 3-4 fundamentals of, say sales? Marketing? Executive assistance? Customer care?
  2. Create a schedule of consistent practice, monitoring, and improvement of those skills.
  3. Make the plan to repeat this for at least a year if not longer.


Your results will be… miraculous.

Repetition is the mother of skill. Repetition of skills over years fosters mastery.

And it’s all in your hands!

 

Mike-Rayburn-Keynote-Speaker

Top Tips for Planning Your Event Post Pandemic

By cmiadmin | Jul 15, 2021 | Comments Off

RiskManagement-insta-new

Determine how big your event will be to assess how great the risk of spreading Covid-19 will be 

There’s nothing worse than to plan your event so carefully in advance only to encounter unexpected situations at the last moment. Since the pandemic, there are many more items to assess and prepare for when creating a large event to help keep people safe from the spread of Covid-19. By working with local and state officials in the initial planning stages and developing strategies for your event from beginning to end, you will ensure the health and safety of onsite staff and volunteers, your speakers and your audience.

Follow our top 4 list of some of the guideline requirements that you will need to identify and prepare for in your next event. For the full, comprehensive list please download the CDC Readiness and Planning Tool.

TOP 4 COVID ASSESSMENT TOOLS FOR LARGE EVENTS: 

  1. General Readiness Assessment
  2. Prepare For if Someone Gets Sick
  3. Daily/Weekly Readiness Assessment
  4. End of Day Actions and Other Resources

 

GENERAL READINESS ASSESSMENTS:

Determining how big your event is going to be will help you assess how great the risk of spreading Covid-19 will be. Coordinate with local officials to determine the laws and regulations of the area.

Make initial preparations to plan for healthy behaviors, environments and operations, such as: 

  • Review all relevant local/state regulatory agency policies and orders, such as those related to events, gatherings, and travel
  • Consult local health officials about recommended Covid-19 testing policies for events
  • Consult with Venue for staff policies around Covid
  • Develop plans or partner with venue staff for social distancing measures for before, during and after the event
  • Ensure there is a flexible refund policy
  • Designate a staff person who handles all Covid-19 related situations and concerns
  • Plan for sanitation stations and key entry/exit points and provide no-touch items such as trash cans, soap and hand sanitizer dispensers
  • Provide masks, tissues and proper ventilation
  • Use touchless payment options
  • Plan seating to ensure people stay 6 ft apart
  • Bring multiple mics and designate someone who wipes things down throughout the event
  • Create proper signage and multiple visual cues for people to properly distance themselves and follow safe protocols
  • Consider multiple entrances and exits to avoid overcrowding
  • Ensure food and beverage vendors use safety protocols

PREPARE FOR IF SOMEONE GETS SICK:

Develop procedures on what to do when someone gets sick, such as: 

  • Designate a person who handles all Covid-19 situations or concerns
  • Create an isolated space for people who are sick with Covid-19 and identify nearby hospitals and contact numbers
  • Create a plan to educate staff and attendees not to attend the event if they get sick with Covid-19
  • If someone gets sick at the event, they should notify the designated Covid-19 contact and go to an area or room that is isolated until they can be safely transported to a healthcare facility
  • Sanitize room where sick person stayed and areas they would have touched
  • Advise sick individuals to stay home and follow CDC’s criteria to discontinue home isolation
  • In accordance with state and local laws and regulations, notify the sick person’s family, local health officials and staff of the situation
  • Advise those who had close contact to self-monitor for symptoms and considering staying home

 

DAILY/WEEKLY READINESS ASSESSMENT:

Monitor and maintain healthy behaviors, environments and operations to reduce the spread of Covid-19: 

  • Maintain regular contact with local health authorities or follow local guidelines
  • Ensure an on-duty staff person is assigned to be responsible for responding to Covid-19 concerns
  • Ensure that all staff and attendees are receiving consistent communications about Covid-19 related policies
  • Ensure attendees have received communication about refund policies if they get sick and cannot attend the event
  • Ensure protocols are being followed for social distancing
  • Ensure sanitation supplies are routinely stocked and all items are consistently being wiped down at event, especially high-touch areas
  • Ensure masks and gloves are available
  • Ensure communications have been made to staff and attendees not to attend work or event if they become sick with Covid-19 symptoms
  • Confirm that there is proper ventilation during event
  • Confirm and maintain that venue staff are educated on relevant Covid-19 safety protocols
  • Ensure there are signs placed in highly visible locations that promote everyday protective measures at:
    • Entrances
    • Dining areas
    • Restrooms
    • Other highly visible locations

 

END-OF-DAY ACTIONS AND OTHER RESOURCES

Address any additional considerations specific to your event: 

  • Identify and document lessons learned at the end of your event
  • Determine ways to improve planning and implementation processes if the event will happen again
  • Update your plans regularly according to the state and local situation and orders

 

It is essential to help keep people safe from the spread of Covid-19 as we return to in-person events.

The pandemic brought so many more processes and policies to consider but, with careful planning and following these health guidelines, you will ensure that everyone at your event is safe. And, as always, remain calm and kind in all situations and your event should be a success.

 

The Future Workplace by Mike Walsh

By Mike Walsh | Jul 12, 2021 | Comments Off

"The pandemic has accelerated the forces of digital transformation, making it more critical than ever to embrace new ways of working and a data-driven approach to decision making."

Should we stay, or should we go? The post-pandemic return to work is fast becoming a controversial and complex issue for leaders to navigate. Everyone has an opinion on the issue. Some are desperate to escape months of Zoom fatigue, while others see little point in commuting for an hour to simply sit in front of another screen. If that seems like a tough choice, it is because it is a false one. The real issue is not remote vs. office work - it is how do we reinvent the workplace for a new era of AI-powered competition?

The real lesson of the pandemic was not that we could run meetings remotely, but rather that the key to our survival was embracing the hard science of digital transformation. When everything turned upside down in early 2020, demand spiked, supply chains splintered, and business processes shattered. The organizations that made it through the crisis did so because they rapidly deployed AI, algorithms, and automation to handle the harsh new operating environment. That worked then, but now, something more is required.

We face a new set of challenges. Implementing automation alone will not be enough to deliver the kind of creative solutions required to reshape industries. Nor will letting people continue working from home be enough to reboot conservative and traditional corporate cultures.

We are about to discover that remote work was just the beginning of a much bigger revolution that is set to reshape the future of all organizations. Rapid shifts in technology, customer needs, and competitor dynamics are a prescription for a more agile, adaptive, and resilient type of firm capable of integrating not only cutting-edge technologies but also embracing a new generation of talent as well.

The pandemic has accelerated the forces of digital transformation, making it more critical than ever to embrace new ways of working and a data-driven approach to decision making. Every workplace in the future will be powered by data. Whether it be how we engage and evaluate our talent, how we automate our processes, or even how we make decisions as leaders - the ability to effectively leverage AI, automation, and algorithms will be at the heart of any 21st-century business.

While many fear imminent change, a bigger opportunity awaits. The question is not whether AI will eliminate jobs, but rather: how will it change them? The leaders of the future need to embrace an entirely new set of skills, capabilities, and mindsets in order to be successful.
 

 

Mike-Walsh-Futurist-Speaker

Communications: Simple as Magic by Vinh Giang

By Vinh Giang | Jul 08, 2021 | Comments Off

Making the Impossible, Possible.

World-Class speaker and magician, Vinh Giang shares how he teaches others to communicate better by using his 5 core communication foundations and that they are actually quite simple.

A key principle, Vinh shares, is your voice mastery and learning to amplify
yourself, among other techniques. He also teaches strategies on storytelling,
body language and much more.

So how do magic and communication relate for Vinh?

Magic is about illusion, the illusion makes the trick feel impossibly complex.

However, when how the illusion works is revealed, the process is actually quite simple. Communication is the same – it can be easily learned by following simple principles and applying them with confidence.

Vinh teaches his core foundations of communication to audiences around the world in his keynote: Mastering the Leader's Instrument.

Communication is as simple as magic. Learn more.

 

Corporate Change Post-Covid: A Cultural Audit by Heather R. Younger

By Heather Younger | Jul 06, 2021 | Comments Off

Maybe we should be considering how right now after so many unexpected turns of events, it might be the perfect time for change.

The Hitch With Change

Human beings are often complacent creatures. How many of you want to make little, or big life changes and lack the motivation? So often we think tomorrow I will eat healthier, be more productive, wake up earlier, make the right choices, and so often we continue to live in our comfortable patterns. 

On a grand scale our world just went through a dramatic and unexpected change. Covid-19 threw everyone into a turmoil. Many times, when people go through a sudden life change, they come out with a new perspective on life. Take the current labor shortage for instance, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, in April alone, 4 million people quit their jobs. Four million people! That’s insane. It is the highest quitting rate since the Bureau was created in 2000. This flux of people leaving their jobs is a direct response to the effects of the global pandemic.

Is this the Perfect Time for Change?

Maybe we should be considering how right now after so many unexpected turns of events, it might be the perfect time for change. As so many employees are leaving their workplaces, it really is a crucial time to listen to and meet the needs of the employees you still have.  Many of the employees who are returning to work, and are not quitting, still have changes in mind that they would like to see. 

When was your company’s last cultural audit? I recommend that you immediately begin to run cultural audits to assess the wants and needs of your newly returned workforce. If there’s one thing we learned from this pandemic, it’s that there should be no more waiting until tomorrow. I encourage you to encourage your entire organization to present any and all ideas for changes, no matter how big or small, that they have on their minds. 

STEP ONE: Listening

The first step in running a cultural audit should be listening. Gather as much feedback as possible. Host listening sessions. Make sure to discuss any insecurities about the future of the workplace whether it’s returning to in-person, hybrid or staying remote. 

Some employees are less likely to speak up at a round-table or in a company orchestrated listening session, so accompany this action with a survey series. Promote anonymous feedback. The more details you can extract about changes people want the easier it will be to enact those changes. 

A large oversight when organizations tune in and begin listening throughout their ranks, is the things that remain unsaid. What isn’t being talked about? I think of the expression, “What you don’t know can’t hurt you,” well in this case, it can. The more you can learn about your employees, the better you can serve them, and the better they will serve the company overall. 

Part of the listening process is recognizing that your employees don’t always respond to surveys and audits. The reality is, many will feel uncomfortable and unsafe, and some just won’t care enough to respond. When the majority of employees are more comfortable leaving concerns unspoken, it is a clear indicator that the work environment is more toxic than safe. 

So work to create a culture of listening where less things remain unspoken, your employees feel safe, and you are able to tailor your response and plan for change better. Show your employees you really care about uncovering the truth of the matter. 

STEP TWO: Action

Once you unearth as many of the unsaid things as you can, it’s time for the action planning. Because what you don’t act on, can and definitely will hurt you. I discuss this extensively in one chapter of my book, The Art of Caring Leadership.  

The last part of The Culture of Listening is connecting the dots. Where your organizations’ leaders must take all the feedback and intentionally mull it over, make an action plan, and then communicate back to their employees each step of the way. 

By beginning the cultural audit process with in-depth listening you won’t leave any stone unturned. The cultural revival occurring in our societies will not only take place outside the walls of your organizations. It probably has already entered them by way of your employees and needs to be cared for and supported as new or improved cultures take root. 

The Next Step

If you are interested in improving your company culture by way of listening more, then feel free to take advantage of this free lesson in listening that I’m offering from the Caring Leadership Academy. 

 

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