How To Help Your Direct Reports Become Better Thinkers

More and more leaders are realizing their competitive edge lies with their talent.  And with their talent, they realize the greatest opportunity for growth is to develop their critical thinking skills. Leaders should create a safe environment for people to make mistakes and to admit thinking errors.  If this isn’t accomplished, people may feel afraid … Read more

Focus On The Goal, Not Just The Task

What is more important? Making 20 sales calls or closing $500,000 in new sales? Conducting weekly cycle inventories or .5% inventory shrink? Publishing regular newsletters or 97% customer retention? Creating weekly collections reports or receivables less than 30 days? Attending safety classes or zero days lost to workplace injury All too often leaders and direct … Read more

Seek Stakeholder Input When Defining A Job

Whether a leader defines jobs using a traditional job description or an Accountability Matrix, they’ll want to get input from people who interact with the individual in the job when outlining the key requirements. The leader and/or HR are generally responsible for defining the requirements for a job.  Soliciting input from those closest to the … Read more

Succession Is A Good Thing

A General Manager had an Assistant Manager working for him for six years.  The GM groomed the protégée well, and the assistant was prepared for a more challenging role.  Unfortunately, the GM was not ready to move on and there was nowhere for the superstar to move up within the organization. Instead of enjoying the luxury of having a … Read more

How Well Do You Know Your Direct Reports?

Jack Welch said it was the most important meeting on his calendar.  Steve Jobs did it by walking side by side around the Apple campus.  Coaching legend Bill Campbell started and ended it with a hug.  The Metiss Group calls it the most important leadership practice any leader can apply.  “It” is the one-on-one meeting … Read more

Make Recruiting Everyone’s Responsibility

When leaders are asked what their greatest talent challenge is, most will say it’s finding “good people.”  Regardless of the economic conditions, hiring managers can never find enough top talent. Human behavior dictates talented people normally hang around other talented people.  If there are top performers on a team, there is a very good chance … Read more

Use Questions, Not Statements

Too often when direct reports come to leaders with a problem, leaders speak using statements when questions are often a much better choice. When a direct report comes to a leader with an issue, solving it for them makes the leader the choke point for future problems and does little, if anything, to develop the … Read more

Be Wary Of Loyalty Liabilities

Every leader can tell you about the hard working, tireless group of employees that helped them start their business. The leader realizes they would not have experienced success without the contributions of these loyal workers. Unfortunately as the business matures and changes, the people with whom they started their business are not necessarily those with … Read more

It’s Time To Update Job Accountabilities

As we draw near the close of the first quarter, it is a great time to update job accountabilities. All direct reports should have a job accountability matrix capturing the job’s activities, priorities, and success factors.  Job accountabilities are often used in lieu of a job description that lists the job’s requirements and expectations. Whether leaders … Read more

Be A Passive Participant In Interviews

Most leaders admit to being poor interviewers, often because of biases. Interviewing is a learned skill and is something hiring managers typically have had little or no training. Those leaders who conduct their own interviews often miss much of the candidate’s response (verbal and non-verbal) as they prepare for their next question or process the answer … Read more