A simple acrostic to help us when the inevitable disagreement happens with colleagues.
Extend an olive branch
Focus on Facts – focus on the facts, not feelings
We all have different personalities, methodologies, and therefore varying methods of approaching work and relationships. There are a few common practices that are necessary to be effective despite all of these differences in temperaments and abilities. All of these practices require us to perform the necessary tasks and eliminate the unnecessary ones.
1. Know thy time: All of the time that is under our control needs to be apportioned to our priorities – not someone else’s. Our goals cannot be met if we do not manage our precious time.
2. Build on strength: We all have weaker and stronger areas. We should focus on building on our strengths and the strengths of our team. Do not waste time trying to improve weakness. Find someone whose strength it is and employ their talents.
3. Focus on superior performance: Superior performance that begets outstanding results should be the focus. To do otherwise wastes high performance systems on substandard plans. This will help force us to stay within our priorities.
4. Make effective decisions: Decisions are the propulsion for the performance engine. They must be made at the right time with the right inputs and data. Make it too soon and risk is increased without good reason. Make it too late and schedule is delayed and worse, the organization’s momentum can stall.
These are all behaviors that can be learned. These are not innate qualities that only the great leaders possess however, all great leaders possess and use these qualities. I challenge you to go forth and be great by applying these concepts to your work and life.
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Innovation is nothing more than doing something in a new manner that provides an outcome that is better than that provided by the current method or solution. Therefore, innovation starts with the notion that they way we are doing it and have always done it is no longer the best. This can create fear or unease in some who are less secure with the unknown.
One of my favorite ad campaigns of the 1980’s was the H-P ad that showed their employee in a telephone booth (I am really dating my self now) along side a dirt road in rural America talking to his colleagues and asking them “What if…?”
That simple question, “What if,” is the spark of innovation. It happened when people wanted to travel faster than a horse could take them. It happened when the cell phone industry was replaced by the Smartphone industry when “simple” communication devices were replaced with multi-media entertainment and life management devices that, by the way, permit communication too.
The fear that innovation invites is the fear of insecurity that we may no longer be as good as we think we are. This fear is also caused by the unknown. Something “new & innovated” is by definition unknown and this tends to cause at least some level of fear in all humans.
The real question of innovation is not whether it will occur but when. Innovation is most likely going to be created by those who faced their fears, planned around & through them, and moved forward inspite of the fear of the unknown.
Playing it (too) safe prevents progress. Facing fears and navigating through them ensures it.
We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark; the real tragedy of life is when men are afraid of the light. – Plato
Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_fear.html#5iRMhux4c5m06WXX.99
Doug has helped dramatically improve performance, create compelling competitive advantage, and maximize profits at Fortune and Global 1000 companies like General Electric, Honeywell, Ericsson, Meritor, and Schneider Electric.