How Leaders Make the Best Out of Mondays

For the longest time, Mondays have gotten a bad rep. They have often been seen as the mark the end of the weekend and the dreaded start of the workweek. However, Mondays can actually be the best day of the week. When it comes to being a successful leader, they make the best out of Mondays and use it as their most productive day.

Hyping Up the Team

Without a doubt, energies are very low on Mondays. Instead of letting your team sulk and dread the beginning of the week, make it a day they look forward to. A good leader will use Mondays to start the week off right and get their team members pumped. A fun and easy way to do this is to start the day off with a meeting that has complimentary donuts or simply grabbing everyone’s coffee orders. This way, your team members are happy and more likely to have a productive day.

Tackle Challenging Tasks First

It’s easy to let Mondays slip out of the way when you’re looking to just get it over with. Instead of waiting for it to just be over and waiting to be more productive on Tuesday, use Monday to get all of your toughest tasks over with. This way, by using the beginning of the week to handle your biggest challenges, the rest of the week is a breeze. You are able to put more focus on your team and their challenges. This will help your week go by much more efficiently. 

Revisit Overall Vision and Purpose

Mondays are the perfect day to revisit your overall goals, vision, and purpose. Instead of just going through the motions and losing sight of the bigger picture, think about your overall objection. It only takes a few minutes to go over strategic planning and goals that align with your vision or purpose. It’s even better to go over with your team of why you all are doing what you do and what the team is working towards. This will not only motivate and inspire your team, but it will also keep the right on track and become much more efficient. 

Look at Mondays as your most efficient day and the best opportunity to make your week as productive and efficient as possible.

Ways to Foster Belonging at Work

The human sense of connection is incredibly important: it impacts our health and productivity. While it may seem that belonging only matters in our personal lives, research conducted by the leadership development startup BetterUp indicates that workplace belonging is key to employee well-being and organizational functioning. Exclusion can beget both pain and psychological ailments. 

BetterUp found, among other statistics, that employees see a 56% increase in job performance when they feel like they belong. Furthermore, belonging benefits workers’ careers, since those who felt highly connected received twice as many raises and were 18 times more likely to be promoted in a six month period. Cofounder and CEO of BetterUp Alexi Robichaux states that the most important assets to your company are your people. “Belonging should be at the heart of every human capital strategy.” 

If you’re not sure how to do that, here are some strategies that came out of their research.

Create Allies at Work

A powerful solution to prevent feelings of exclusion is to add an ally to the team. Having an ally can counteract the 25% productivity loss seen in those who didn’t have one. This can be as simple as having someone who acknowledges and includes you. Peers make for very effective allies, and fortunately, there is no hierarchy to allyship: anyone can be an ally. 

Encourage Healthy Interactions

Psychologists Jane Dutton and Emily Heaphy coined the term high-quality connections (HQCs) to describe interactions that have a positive impact on our lives and work. In a high-quality connection, each person reciprocates positive regard and care, and as a result, both feel valued. HQCs play an important role in close relationships but also have the power to unlock meaning in less intimate interactions. These interactions can be brief and emotionally neutral, but the key is that they happen regularly and are not negative. 

Tips on Recovering from Failure

When we think of leaders and successful people, we usually just picture them in their successes. Seldom do we think of their failures. Failure can cause emotional pain and embarrass us, but the silver lining of failure is that it is an opportunity to grow and enrich our lives both personally and professionally.

 

The first gift of failure is humility. Acknowledging a mistake and/or failure takes us to a place of vulnerability. Admitting to it is powerful and helps us to affirm that we want to do the correct thing, in the case of wrongdoing, or to do better if we fell short. Humility is also a reminder that as humans, we are social and need to rely on one another.  

 

Another gift of failure is compassion. Admitting to mistakes can be unbearably embarrassing, painful, even, but that embarrassment can increase our compassion for others. Research has shown that we tend to focus more on ourselves when we are successful and have achieved a higher status. The vulnerability of failure opens us up to connecting with others. Sally Blount, a contributor to Forbes, puts it best: “It turns out that engaging in the small joys and comaraderies of everyday life is one of the best ways to soothe a chastened ego.” 

 

One of the best ways to recover from failure is to keep an openness to learning. Many people find they learn best through experience, and that includes experiencing failure. Of course, this isn’t easy, as we tend towards safety and comfort. The combination of humility and compassion helps us learn and better connects us with others. While success may increase confidence, it is failure that builds wisdom. 

Five Things Sucessful Leaders Do Every Day

To be a leader successfully there are a number of qualities one must possess. It can be a balance that once attained is the key to a business running smoothly and prospering. For example, leaders need to be able to make critical decisions that not everyone agrees with while still empowering their employees and making them feel confident in their own positions. While maintaining this balance there are five habits that become natural to leaders in any industry. 

 

Making Big Decisions (Quickly)

Leaders are counted on to make things happen. This means that most decisions fall to them, or at the very least they are always informed of the why’s and how’s someone else reached a critical decision. Often times there are choices to be made quickly and it’s a leaders job to keep the momentum going and make the big decision confidently. This comes with experience and skills acquired over time because while some would struggle to weigh all options, leaders are thinking a few steps ahead and able to produce an answer or solution quickly.

 

Challenging People

To get the best work leaders know how to challenge people while instilling confidence in them. This means knowing the capabilities of the employees and putting their minds to the task at hand. It’s important that everyone is always learning and by continually delegating and keeping people thinking, leaders allow the work environment to stay positive and fresh.

 

Providing Feedback

Everyone wants to feel appreciated. A successful leader is going to let their employees know that they are paying attention. By providing feedback, the relationship between the two naturally gains more trust and the chance for miscommunication narrows.

 

Allude Positive Attitude

Successful leaders are very aware of the benefits of a positive work space and they seek ways to improve morale. When people see their leader alluding a positive attitude it causes stability and inspiration. Everyone should feel like they contribute to the goals of the company, and leaders make sure to keep the energy motivating.

 

Keep Learning

Finally, to stay successful one must always be evolving. To stop learning is to stop growing and that’s the last thing a successful leader will let happen. While inspiring and teaching others, leaders must continue to educate themselves. By staying knowledgeable about trends, news, and any other statistics that can affect business the leader can be sure to also continue being a teacher to others that look to them for help and support.

What You Can Learn from Great Leaders

The old paradigm of leadership that prizes title, office size and formal authority is quickly fading away. The major shift is taking place on the mental plane – that is to say – leadership is increasingly becoming more of a mindset and less about package of over bloated prerequisites commonplace among some circles of senior executives.

 

This model seeks to incorporate a balance of strategic and emotional intelligence. As of late, active influencers in all industries across social media platforms are preaching the gospel of what really helps individuals and brands succeed through progressive forms of impact. These leaders express sincere devotion to simple principals like empathy, integrity, trust, compassion, service, and an urge to see others succeed.

 

Leaders Bring Out The Leader In Others

Titles of nobility are less important than franchising a leadership model based on mentorship at work, with family, and in the respective community. The best leaders on the planet practice growing other leaders at a much quicker pace than the competition. Doing more to create and innovate optimizes every facet of the balance between the professional and the personal. This might look like extending credit to winning team members they excel. Seeking opportunities to collaborate encourages an atmosphere of trust – the building block for growth.

 

Great Leaders Are Inspired And Instill Inspiration

A glance at the profiles of Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Nelson Mandela, Rembrandt, and Picasso illustrates the value of truly being inspired by a passionate pursuit of higher ideals. As a result, they became incredibly inspiring to those around them. Former employees at Apple attest the fact that Steve Jobs wasn’t exactly a “nice” person. However, many will agree that his dedication to innovation with Apple’s products and services created die-hard reverence for the company’s internal culture, prompting many to seek employment at the corporate giant. The position of CIO should be reworked to mean Chief Inspirational Officer. Leaders teach us to be inspirational in all undertakings.

 

Making study of the characteristics common to great leaders can reveal a wealth of practical insights useful across a vast array of talents, skill sets, and professional endeavors. Leadership is about recognizing that crisis is the norm and not exception. They teach us to address problems from a position of fearless strength.

What Successful Leaders do Differently

In today’s business world, becoming an effective and successful leader requires skill building in areas such as integrity, empathy, and the setting of healthy personal boundaries. Fortunately, learning to strengthen skills in these areas is something that anyone can do with enough effort; it may require time and hard work to master leadership skills, it is true, but the results can be truly life-changing. Here are just a few of the qualities that set successful leaders apart from the pack, and why they matter more than ever.

 

Great leaders admit when they’re wrong

Anyone who has had a manager who refuses to own up to their mistakes knows that an irresponsible leader quickly sinks company morale. Being an effective leader doesn’t just mean keeping one’s word when times are tough, and deadlines are looming, it also means admitting when one has chosen the wrong course of action. Without taking personal responsibility for mistakes, there is little guarantee that the same problems will not arise again and again in the future, and that is an outcome that can spell disaster for a business. Indeed, to be a truly successful leader in the long term, a sense of personal responsibility is a must-have skill.

 

Great leaders don’t confuse being nice with being a pushover

Unable to cope with the idea of being disliked, some leaders want to accommodate the demands of everyone they meet, despite the fact that their need to please others may be undermining their ability to lead effectively. Focused on being the office “nice guy,” these leaders too often burn themselves out by taking personal responsibility for making everyone around them happy. While kindness is an essential quality of effective leadership, it’s important to recognize the difference between caring about others and becoming their personal doormat.

 

Great leaders empathize with employees

As anyone who has seen the negative effect of a high employee turnover rate on a company’s reputation, employee satisfaction isn’t just about making a good salary or negotiating a competitive benefits package. Without empathetic leaders, simply put, a workplace becomes a toxic place for everyone involved. Just as being a pushover is a detrimental quality in a leader, a manager who does not empathize with their employees will often push talented workers towards better opportunities at other companies. For these reasons, knowing the difference between setting healthy boundaries and setting impossibly rigid boundaries is an essential skill for a truly successful leader.

 

While it can feel intimidating to begin the path towards mastery of interpersonal and leadership skills, the truth is that top-notch communication abilities in business can be developed with time and dedication. Becoming a great leader doesn’t happen overnight, but fortunately, the personal rewards of a journey towards becoming a great leader are more than worth the effort. For those willing to take the high road towards business success, that is life at its best!

Three Reasons Why Visionary Leadership Fails

When it comes to leadership, there is really no one way to be effective. That doesn’t mean, however, that there aren’t leadership styles that work far more effectively in one situation versus another. There are also leadership styles that are flat out ineffective over the long haul. One of these styles is the visionary leader. While all leaders need to have a vision, there is a huge difference between a leader with vision and a visionary leader. Here are three reasons that visionary leadership fails.

 

Visionary leaders have difficulties with small steps and mundane actions

Great leaders know how to cast a broad vision, then help their people transition to the trivial task of carrying out the thousands of individual steps it takes to achieve it. While it’s true that visionary leaders can inspire people to push beyond their limitations and achieve more than they dreamed possible, no one wants to be “go-go-go” day in, day out, 365 days of the year. We all love Disneyland, but no one really wants to live there.

 

Visionary leaders have difficulty with anyone that doesn’t agree with their vision

Visionary leaders often rely on razzle-dazzle to get people fired up and enthusiastic about a vision. As long as everyone is, their combined energy can create an almost unclear reaction, allowing them to accomplish the impossible. One “wet blanket” however, is often all it takes to keep the energy in the room from powering an explosion. In some cases, however, this is simply a matter of cooler heads prevailing and wanting to get a few more details before leaping into an “exciting new endeavor.”

 

Visionary leaders achieve greatly, but they also fail just as spectacularly

Visionary leaders are like supernovas speeding across the sky – indeed a sight to behold. But when they crash and burn, it is just as spectacular. When visionary leaders crash and burn, however, they often take the whole ship down with them. While everyone wants to be a part of the “miracle success story” that visionary leaders are capable of creating, no one wants to be a part of the absolute train wreck they can create as well. While following the tortoise may not be quite as glamorous or exciting as following the hare, we all know who wins in the end.

Qualities Needed to be a Transformational Leader

Transformational leadership is highly essential today where a typical leader should be able to actively lead a team to productivity and success. Becoming a transformational leader requires one to exhibit and practice certain essential transformational leadership qualities.

 

Change-oriented

Change in leadership is highly significant. As a transformational leader, one needs to understand when to initiate such change and how to go about it while addressing any team needs and preventing conflict in the process. When undertaking such change, a transformational leader takes into consideration the perception of individuals who will be affected.

 

Intellect

Intellect is a highly needed attribute among transformational leaders. The ability to actively think logically in order to resolve problems within the team and beyond helps the transformational leader to become resourceful at all times. Intellect also comes in handy in assisting a transformational leader in understanding other members of the team.

 

Encouraging participation

As a transformational leader, one must be able to spur other members of the team to work actively by participating in teamwork activity. This can be done in many ways and should be intellectually thought. A good transformational leader should be able to encourage active thinking from team members to ensure they remain resourceful to the rest of the team.

 

Communication

Communication is the backbone of the success of any team. Transformational team leaders should be good communicators while being able to absorb new ideas from every possible channel of communication. The leader should also be competent enough when it comes to avoidance of knee-jerk reactions in situations where any communication elicits judgment. Expressing self-restraint in cases of advanced communication or ideas ensures the rest of the team stays together.

 

Loyalty

Loyalty to the team’s vision and mission is highly essential if a transformational leader is to achieve the team’s obligations successfully. The transformational leader should also be able to spur the loyalty of other members of the team to work. Loyalty goes beyond working within a team. It involves the dedication of resources such as time and ideas to the team to ensure that the mission is accomplished.

 

Personal integrity

Personal integrity as a team leader is highly necessary as it involves the leaders’ ability to transformatively think and act in ways that show responsibility. Being a firm believer of particular ideologies and taking a strong stand gives a leader the integrity required to run a team successfully.

Why Entitlement Is The Ultimate Leadership Derailer

Entitlement has become something of a buzzword that gets tossed around and even mistakenly applied in a number of erroneous ways. Many times, we think of someone as being “entitled” when they simply have something we do not have, but want. In truth, entitlement is the belief that you have earned (or are entitled to) something that you have not earned. Therefore, in many cases, the person who labels someone else as “entitled” is often actually the entitled one. Because they believe they deserve something someone else has, but have not actually done what it takes to earn the thing the other person has. Entitlement is a particularly destructive quality in leaders. Here are three reasons why.

 

Entitlement literally keeps you from leading

By its very nature, leadership is embodied by movement. You can’t follow a parked car. Entitled leaders generally see their role as one of giving orders or making demands, rather than of setting an example for others to follow. They believe their job is to tell others what to do. To speak something means to dictate. The person that does something that enables others to follow them is a leader. The person that tells others what to do is – quite literally – a dictator.

 

Entitlement undermines your own authority

One thing that entitled leaders fail to understand is the difference between position, title and leadership. A business or company can give you a title and a certain amount of authority to make certain decisions. The authority to lead, however, can only be given by those that choose to follow. Like the old saying goes, if you think you’re leading, but no one is following, you’re just out standing in a field.

 

Entitled leaders create entitled cultures

“Do as I say, not as I do” leadership rarely (if ever) succeeds. About the only time entitled leaders don’t create an entitled culture is if they are not actually the leader and the real leader is setting a better example. If you feel like your workplace is riddled with entitled behavior and you are the boss, the first place to start addressing it is with the “man (or woman) in the mirror.”

Why Leading with Empathy is Essential

Leaders come in many forms, and with various styles come characteristics unique to each one. However, if there is one essential quality all leaders should possess, it is empathy. Empathy is described as the ability to share or understand the feelings of others. Why is this quality vital for leaders to have?

 

Empathy is a quality that leaders should have because it enables you to put yourselves in your follower’s shoes. Whether it be at school, work, or any other activity, interpersonal relationships create the foundation for greater productivity. You cannot foster a great relationship without understanding the difficulties that others go through. Your perception may not necessarily be indicative of the underlying truth. We all have difficulties that we face each day, but leading with empathy will permit you to lead more effectively.

 

The effectiveness of empathetic leadership does not apply to just your team or your follower. This also applies to your clientele. You cannot expect to earn the trust of the customers, or even gain new ones at that, if you do not understand their needs. Any entrepreneur or business can sell a product to anybody. However, the success of any business is contingent upon how strong the relationship with its customers are. The greatest way to strengthen a relationship with those who do business with you is to empathize with what they are looking for, and provide them with those needs.

 

Empathy may also be the biggest tool any entrepreneur may have at their dispsoal. This is because this quality enables you to strengthen relationships of all kinds. Monetary tools or analytics can help you to a great degree, but you cannot put a price on understanding the needs of those you are in contact with. It costs you nothing to attempt to understand what others need. You can choose to take that initiative.

 

The long-term goal of every entrepreneur is to change the world in some form. Businesses that are successful effectively addresses a need for the people. Whether this need be a product or a service, the entrepreneur empathized with the people and worked to devise a means by which those needs could be addressed. This was all because they had empathy guiding all of their decisions. Let empathy guide you to success.