Do you have a love/hate relationship with your job, your role, your team or your organization?
I sure did! It sucked the life and fun out of me!
Do you want to learn how to lose the loathing love the work?
On this week's FB Live show I talked about what I did and you can too - to learn to love leadership. Let me give you a bit of an overview here.
I was in a pretty toxic environment
In my book Mastering Confidence, I tell the story of a time when my team was just a wee bit toxic. Ok, honestly, very toxic. At the time I blamed everyone around me. It was her fault, his fault, and their fault. Certainly, I wasn't the one to blame. As such, I didn't want to go to work. I dreaded it each morning as I got ready and headed into the office. Whenever I could, I avoided certain people, teams, and sites. I loathed my job.
It took a shift in my mindset and some learning to turn that around.. I need to take responsibility for my self, my impact and move from victim to leader. I find that many of the women I work with also struggle in this way.
My client was in a pretty toxic environment
Take Rebecca for example.She came to me a few months into a new promotion. Initially when she took the role of a supervisor on she loved it. That quickly turned to overwhelm, extreme dislike for her boss and frustration with her team. Rebecca felt like no one listened or cared about the work or her. She found she was turning into an uncaring person, simply focused on the tasks for the day.
We both need to see things differently
When we started coaching, the first thing I began to do was help Rebecca gain an understanding of herself. She needed to get clear on what her values were. She began to get more connected to her inner guidance system which helped her recognize what triggered her, her self-talk and take back control of her emotions. It was the same place I started when I turned my team back around from toxic to strong. Once I figured out how important family was to me, honesty and my deep connection to the work we were doing, I quickly realized why I had reacted to so many things that had happened in the preceding months.
We moved from ourselves to focusing on our team
The next thing I worked with Rebecca on was helping her to see her team as individuals and realize her job was to grow them. She started to see them differently as I'd also began to see my team in a new light. It is always fascinating for me to watch my clients now take the same journey that I did so many years ago. That path is seeing individual's strengths, identifying their potential and putting a focus on growing them and helping them to realize their full potential. It's an amazing feeling to turn from seeing your staff as "problems to be fixed" to "potential to be drawn out."
We both reconnected to the love of our job
The final thing that helped Rebecca to learn to love her leadership role again was taking her newfound inner growth and her shift in her mindset about her team to the bigger purpose of their work. Why do you do what you do? What difference does your work make to the community you serve? These questions helped me years ago to really find that passion and inner spark again. Rebecca lit up to when she began to find the answers to these questions.
This is what we did in a nutshell
These three things, are the things you can also do to move from loathing your leadership role to loving your leadership role
My final thoughts for you
To move from loathing your leadership role to loving it takes some time. Let's be honest, leadership is a tough gig! However, these three things, when you put your focus on them will help you to make that shift more permanent. Grow yourself from the inside out. Focus on seeing the potential in your employees and focus on growing them. Then, take yourself and your team and remind yourselves today and every day...why you do what you do. Trust me, my dear, you will find the love for your work again...as soon as you do!
Want to learn more?
Listen to this week's Facebook Live session to help you make the shift from loathing to loving your job. Don't forget to download this week's guide sheet to help you personally make the shift. Remember, you have to do something with this information, or it won't actually make a change in your life!
Have you ever felt like an outsider?
Perhaps you were the one individual in the room that no one was talking to you.
Have you ever felt that not one cares about you?
Maybe your boss didn't have a clue what you were doing or why you are doing it?
That feeling sucks too.
I’ve felt I’m an outsider, and I bet you have too
Not all the time, but you’ve probably felt that sense that no one cares about you. You walked into a meeting, and there was a group on the side talking. They didn’t seem to notice that you had entered the room. No raised heads. No eye contact. You overheard their conversation and knew you have something to contribute, but they didn’t acknowledge you, let alone asked for your opinion. Ouch!
Most of the time you can shrug it off knowing it wasn’t that they didn’t care about you or your ideas. They were just engrossed in their conversation. Perhaps later they did look up, invite you over and away you went.
That feeling sucks
It’s that initial feeling, though, of not being noticed or not perceiving you are a valuable part of the group that, sad to say, many employees feel on an ongoing basis. They don’t get the impression they are seen, nor do they feel appreciated. Far too often, employees feel insignificant, secondary and dispensable.
These people give less than 100%
When you don’t feel respected, you don’t commit to your work. That means you are producing significantly less than 100% of what you are capable of generating.
When you don’t feel like you matter, that your work counts or that you are cared about, you put your time in and go home. Barely.
You want 100% employee buy-in
My guess is you want more of your team. I suspect you are looking for committed, dedicated and loyal staff. I bet you want people who are invested and care about the work they are doing, the quality of their work, and the impact they are making.
How do you get that?
You care. Simply put:
When you change your interactions with your staff so that they feel that you care about them, their work and their impact, you will find yourself bragging to others about your stellar team players.
Do these 3 things daily to get stellar employee performance
1) Personally, acknowledge your team members
Say hi. Use their name. Call them. Send them an email about them, not what you want them to do. Maybe you text your staff regularly.
2) Ensure they understand the meaning in their work
Everything people do is connected to a bigger project.
The job of a leader is to make the connection for their team. You need to help them to see that all of the smaller pieces all connected to a bigger project or vision.
3) Use all-inclusive language
Approach conversations as if you are all in it together, because you really are all in it together!
Use your words to communicate that everything you are doing is connected, because everything is truly connected!
You can see this in the above example about goals.
Discovering you do have a stellar team
Make these deeper connections with your staff:
Those who run companies (listen carefully, this might be you) complain about employees that don’t do what they are supposed to. Leaders grumble about a staff that doesn't care, employees that aren’t loyal and people who only see the job as a means to a pay cheque. Management gets frustrated when the team wastes time and money. These are everyday criticisms from bosses.
What if perhaps, all of that is true AND that a large part of the reason for that reality is that employees behave like that as a result of how the leaders treat them? What if one of those leaders is you? Ouch right?
You get what you expect
Have you ever heard the expression “You get what you expect?” There is a lot of truth to that in your marriage, in your friendships and as well in your employee’s commitment and effort they put towards the company.
Our expectations inform our actions
The expectations we have come out in the way we as leaders behave. Our interactions with our employees communicate the beliefs we have.
So let us just assume for a moment, that there is a different way.
We are born learners. We move what we are learning from our heads to our hearts, to our hands.
Employees hearts are impacted, positively or negatively by what their leaders expect
If we simply demand, yell, lecture, threaten and ridicule staff, they will feel deflated, defensive, angry and apathetic. You get, what you expect.
Expect engaged employees
If you are looking instead to have energized, engaged and dedicated staff who truly care about the work they are doing, you must connect what is happening for them to their heart, in a good way.
Here are 3 ways to start change your impact on your employees:
1) See your employees as individuals
They are not just an employee number, a warm body or somebody to delegate work to. They are a human being. They have feelings. They have lives. They do care. If you want them to care more, about the same things you care about, treat them with respect.
2) See their strengths and their potential
We are all gifted with qualities, skills, and traits. Each of us is unique. Even though we may have the same title and be doing the same job duties, each one will do it in their own distinctive way.
3) Invest in them
Give your employee’s your time and energy. I am not talking 2 hours of uninterrupted time. It could be 5 minutes of uninterrupted time. But that time could be invaluable to them.
Taking responsibility for your expectations
Seeing the role you play in your employee’s attitude is the first step to changing the connection your staff have to their day-to-day work. It starts with you. Recognize your expectations play a huge role in how you act and then subsequently how your team acts. Work to motivate and inspire your staff by seeing them as individuals, seeing the potential within them by drawing on their strengths and then invest in them. When you make these shifts, you and the team will experience more success and enjoyment in the work you do.
Register for this month's free webinar
If you have ever sat through a dry, boring, longwinded staff meeting, you know the pain I am talking about. You too have felt the agony of trying to sit still and remain professional whilst you body is screaming at you to break free. If this sounds at all familiar and you are now the one running the meetings, keep reading. You likely know it’s time for you to try some creative ways to engage your staff and here are some quick tips.
I used to sneak to the washroom during meetings
Many times in a senior management meeting, I’d listen so someone drone on about something that we’d talked about a zillion times before. As they did, my mind wandered to all of the other things I could be doing if I wasn’t “wasting” my time in the meeting. I was less than engaged for sure!
I wasn't the only one looking for a distraction during meetings
When it began to feel like my fidgeting was becoming obvious and annoying to my colleagues on either side of me, I’d excuse myself to go to the bathroom. I’d drag the trip down the hall a little longer than necessary, to simply avoid the pain of heading back to the meeting. I wasn’t the only one who struggled. Others would excuse themselves to make an “important” call when they’d had enough.
Perhaps you the one now running the meeting
You’ve probably attended many of these meetings in your life. I bet you have felt that sticking a pencil in your eye might be less painful than enduring another hour of the required regular meeting. Yet, at this point in some organizations, certain meetings are mandatory. If you are now in charge of running some meetings, you might be unsure of how to get the necessary messages across without annoying everyone in attendance.
If you understand the true purpose for meetings, you will never run a meeting the same way again
Here is the thing, some meetings are necessary, that is true. However not all meetings are useful. The key to running engaging meetings is recognizing the true value of most meetings is relationship building rather than information sharing.
You could try to only share information, it might not work so well
Most information covered at a meeting could be covered in an email. Alternately, you could hand everyone a paper at the beginning of the meeting and say, “Please read this and sign off that you’ve read it.” You may include new information, some updates and you might possibly add a multiple choice question at the bottom for feedback on the one item that really needs feedback.
Attendees of a meeting are looking to build relationships
Now if you ran a meeting like that, it would seem cold. You would appear like a robot running the meeting. We don’t run meetings that way, because as I said, meetings are truly about relationships. We want to get to know employees. Staff are trying to build up working relationships with their colleagues. Often times, we are looking for employee’s opinions. Truthfully, we should also be trying to engage staff. Meetings should also be an opportunity for employees to feel that they do make a difference in the organization and that the work they do matters.
Knowing that, here are 5 ways to make meeting more engaging for your staff
Build relationships and you will have engagement
Employee engagement begins with relationship building . If your employees are not engaged in your meeting, you are wasting your time. Get the engagement by really including them. Be clear the meeting is about building relationships and structure it so that it truly can aide in that.
Question: Which one of these suggestions will you try at your next meeting? Make a comment below and let me know how it went.
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