How to get accolades and outcomes from your work

How to get accolades and outcomes from your work

Are you more concerned with accolades or outcomes?  You might say, “I want both.” Accolades are great, and everyone wants them. Some are willing to do anything to get noticed and promoted. A few intentional attitude shifts can help you get outcomes that naturally lead to personal rewards and possibly recognition. What it takes to get outcomes that lead to accolades.  Stop thinking about how you look to others. Think about the tasks, time, and people needed to get the job done for the team or organization. No one succeeds without a team. Most people operate quietly behind the scenes.You may not even know many of the people on your “team.” For example, someone is either turning the lights on or paying the bill. Who keeps the space you are working in clean? Who does the bookkeeping to ensure you get paid regularly? Be willing to do what others can’t or won’t. Most successful people find that with repetition of some task and grit, they become expert or proficient at something that eventually promotes them. See yourself as the guide, not the hero. Everyone wants to be a hero, and every hero has a guide (Yoda to Luke Skywalker, Kesuke Miyagi to Karate Kid, Mickey to Rocky, Donkey to Shrek). It does not work out when you jockey to be the hero. Let it happen. In the meantime, look for ways to help all the other heroes excel. This could be your team, boss, or a client. Do your best, but don’t kill yourself. It’s tough to find a balance because only you know what your best looks like....
Your Leadership Style Determines the Right Hire

Your Leadership Style Determines the Right Hire

Hiring people is time-consuming. Firing people is even more costly than hiring at times. Being honest about your own leadership style and company culture will save time, money, and potential heartache when it comes to hiring. Here are three common leadership styles and the types of people that will fit best with each style. The drill sergeant Life moves fast. You need people to follow orders efficiently and without the need for a lot of direction. If there’s a crisis and you want people putting rocks in boots, there won’t be time to explain why. A good employee for you will be the person focused on getting the job done according to the rules. They will often possess many interests outside of work. They want to do the job and collect a pay check. Avoid entrepreneurs and overly enthusiastic people. Look for people who’s references call them timely, neat, and attentive to details. The visionary You cast vision, see the big picture and often get your best ideas on the beach or a long drive. You need people who get your vision and can identify and implement the detail without much direction. You’ll have their back if needed but can’t be bothered with a lot of minutiae. Someone that is a bit entrepreneurial is a good fit. They too might have a dream. This person also has the discernment, stamina, and intelligence to get into the details without a lot of hand holding. Give them some accountability measures and a timeframe along with a few pats on the back, and let them go for it. The plant manager You are not afraid...

Business leadership and the three types of people

(image: www.workingsheepdog.co.uk) In the movie American Snipper, Ben Reed as Chris Kyle’s father, explains to his young sons that there are three kinds of people: sheep, wolves, and sheep dogs. While simple in concept, the analogies to human instinctual behavior make a good filter for choosing leaders in your company. Sheep are the followers and often those preyed upon by the assertive and sometimes aggressive types (wolves). Sheep dogs possess those same aggressive tendencies but through training and temperament follow a herding or protective instinct. You probably have all three types within the organization. Sheep and wolves will be much more common. The sheep make good internal production-oriented staff. Wolves are naturally great at sales, mergers, acquisitions, and even some management positions. But when it comes to key leadership positions, especially during times of transition or turbulence in an organization, look for the sheep dog. They will guide and motivate the sheep and moderate the wolves. Wolves only or a combination of wolves and sheep may drive revenue up for a season, but they will never create the atmosphere where creativity and the natural high resulting from team success will flourish. The best way to find sheep dogs is to watch existing people function in the work place or screen for them with questions to references. For example, you might ask a former teacher or employer: “How does Sally react when under pressure” or “When working in a team, what role does Sally gravitate toward.”  ...
Getting a grip on your passwords and protecting yourself from hackers

Getting a grip on your passwords and protecting yourself from hackers

If you are still writing down passwords or allowing your browser to save them, you’ll appreciate these best practices for password generation and protection. We got on the phone with IT man extraordinaire John Glenn (not the astronaut) of Neotech Inc. as well as ventured out onto the “dark web” to bring you the best password advice. The bottom line is you probably need to go to a password manager such as LastPass or RoboForm. Life Hacker has a thorough comparison piece on the different managers available: see story here. They cover features, usability, support, and security. All password managers generate passwords, have auto form filling, secure password sharing, and secure notes. John Glenn compares the one password option to the lockbox on a house. However, if you still want to keep up with the password for your home Wi-Fi and Amazon account, here are the do’s and don’ts. How to create the best password  John Glenn says, “The best password is one you can remember.” But, he also says don’t do the following: Don’t go for some random word. There are 75K popular English words that hackers can crack in their sleep Don’t write your password down Don’t choose to let your browser remember passwords Don’t login to your bank account or other personal info sites via the free Wi-Fi at Starbucks, the airport, etc. Hackers get you by snooping or stealing data that contains your “hash” (mortals don’t need to care about the hash. It’s an algorithm systems use to store passwords in a simplified form). Hackers hang around places with an evil twin Wi-Fi waiting to...
About Your Headshot on LinkedIn (And Every Other Digital Platform)

About Your Headshot on LinkedIn (And Every Other Digital Platform)

A headshot is a photo of you from the shoulders up intended to present your best professional self. Most professional photographers will take a headshot for $100 or less. At the risk of hurting your feelings, we need to talk about your headshot or lack thereof. Please trust us on this one. It’s worth the money. Don’t wait. Do it now. Here’s what a headshot is NOT: A picture of your pet, spouse, kids, motorcycle, trophy bull, scenery, a cartoon, or anything else that is not just your head and shoulders You more than five years ago The cell phone shot your spouse or friends took last year on vacation or anywhere for that matter You looking sultry, drunk, angry, or any other expression than one of a pleasant, honest professional ready to serve clients (unless a hat and sunglasses is part of your professional uniform, don’t wear these items in the headshot) You wearing anything that does not look like business attire for your industry (please no bare shoulders) A picture in the wrong size and shape to fit the digital platform being used Remember a picture is worth a thousand words. Go to LinkedIn and peruse all those recommended connections. Think about the message you get from the image a person has placed in that little box. Now, go take an honest look at the image you’ve got on LinkedIn or any other platform. What message is your image sending? When you go to get the headshot created, be sure to ask for sizes that fit the most common social media platforms (here’s the cheat sheet). Also,...
Four Common Threads in Successful Email Newsletters and Outreach

Four Common Threads in Successful Email Newsletters and Outreach

Email is growing as the most effective yet least expensive form of marketing. ExactTarget, an email platform, reports that 77% of consumers prefer to receive permission-based marketing communications through email. The key is to understand the etiquette and how to use email platforms such as MailChimp or Constant Contact to your advantage. We’ve found that companies offering a high-end product or service stand to get the most out of email newsletters and other forms of outreach. Canopy Partners, a healthcare management services organization, regularly exceeds a 40% open rate and 8.55 click through rate. Here’s why. The four common threads include: Consistency – Get the email out about the same time (best practices says before 11 am on a weekday) each week/month/quarter, depending on what you’ve determined your audience will appreciate Value – Provide interesting, not salsey, thought leadership each time and people will keep opening. Use a meaningful subject line. 69% of email recipients report email as Spam based solely on the subject line (Jay Baer). Appearance – Ensure the templates are branded and the photos sized properly and that your images are not too big. Make it easy on the eye for desktop and mobile users. Personalize – Set up your email to come from someone the recipient knows, not info or company name. 43% of email recipients click the Spam button based on the email “from” name or email address (Jay Baer). Ensure the recipient is someone you know or that would reasonably know of your company. Email platforms can be used to send single emails or automated group emails. Use them to set up registration and marketing for your...