Tag Archives: teamwork

Golden Rule for Nonprofit Leaders!

As a nonprofit leader, you are faced with a tremendous challenge.

In addition to being tasked with providing leadership during a time of major change, you are also confronted with the demands of delivering results in a difficult economy.

These two circumstances can cause a lot of frustration. Why? Because you are feeling the weight of providing help for the people you want to assist or the cause you want to make a difference for.

This type of stressful situation can be emotionally, mentally, and physically draining. When these negative influences are triggered, your professional performance and ability to provide positive leadership can be compromised.

Many nonprofits have respite programs to offer relief to overloaded caregivers providing care for a single beneficiary. You have the same need as a compassionate caregiver, only yours is multiplied many times over.

So how do you deal with the proliferation of personal and professional pressures created by change and challenging times?

My suggestion is to apply Hardy’s Golden Rule for Nonprofit Leaders: Do for yourself what you do for others.

You need to benefit from the same commitment to compassion and caring that you give to your priority cause.

It’s not about being selfish. If you aren’t performing at your best, your organization’s all-important mission won’t be achieved.

Just working harder isn’t always the answer.

Here are four action steps that can provide relief to the stress that could be impacting your performance.

  1. Ask for help. Often we are our own worst enemy when faced with a difficult problem. Letting ego and pride get in the way of asking for help is counterproductive. For example, members of the National Speakers Association are encouraged to participate in master mind groups of colleagues that offer problem solving, performance accountability, and professional support. Likewise, you should identify peers whom you can turn to for advice, mutual support, and collaborative effort to develop needed solutions.
  2. Benefit from life balance. For maximizing your personal productivity, there are essential basics you must commit to: such as, exercise, good diet, and actually taking time away. Allowing for personal rejuvenation is a stress buster and stimulates creativity in a time when innovation is critical. Consider possible nonproductive habits you need to eliminate, and good habits you need to capitalize on better.
  3. Utilize a team strategy. Share the load, and benefit from the strength of individuals working together. Take advantage of the experience of others in your organization and their diverse ideas: solicit input and recognize contributions members of your team are making. Help your team help you by eliminating barriers that restrict productivity, and instead, cultivating creative thought from them. Practice effective communication techniques to keep everyone informed and focused on responding to the challenge at hand.
  4. Take a small-actions approach. Chip and Dan Heath, authors of Switch, write that sometimes a problem seems so overwhelming that the solution may be paralyzing. They advocate taking small incremental actions that ultimately produce a cumulative effect. The Heaths also encourage celebrating small successes – your own and others’. It generates personal motivation to do more.

Apply Hardy’s Golden Rule for Nonprofit Leaders: Do for yourself what you do for others. You will be much better equipped to effectively respond to the pressures of change and challenging times that are now affecting nonprofit professionals.

Speaker Hardy Smith is your Go-to Resource who works with NonProfits and Associations that want an Ongoing Culture of Performance.  To learn more about Hardy and have him speak at your next event click here:  More About Hardy Smith


Together We Are Better

better togetherSaturday night as I was preparing for dinner guests, I noticed that the green plant that has been sitting on the counter for several months was looking really droopy, and I started to toss it out.  (In spite of the best efforts of my grandmother, I never developed much of a green thumb!)  As often happens to me, I interrupted myself, and started arranging the flowers I had for the table.  Suddenly, I had an idea.  I stuck some of the live flowers into the green plant.  The results were amazing!  A few days later, a friend who is in my house often, saw it, and exclaimed, “Wow, I didn’t know that plant bloomed like that!”  I told my story, and we both had a laugh.  I have no idea how long that solution will last, but in the meantime, I’m enjoying the results.

The episode caused me to think about how many times we throw something out — whether it’s a physical item or an intellectual idea — when with a little more ingenuity we could create something beautiful.  It also was a beautiful illustration of one of my favorite life philosophies: “Together We Are Better.”

By itself, the green plant left much to be desired, and the red flowers I put in it were dramatically enhanced by the addition of the plant.

The same principle applies to relationships.  When I decided it was time to update Taming the Paper Tiger at Home, I wanted to make sure it would appeal to future generations, so I partnered with Jennifer Wig to write Organizing Paper @Home: What To Toss and How To Find the Rest! to add a younger perspective.

My business partner, Andrea Anderson, and I frequently refer to each other as “Peanut Butter” and “Jelly.”   I love to be out front, and she thrives behind the scenes.  Together We Are Better!

So here’s my challenge for you this week, “What area of your life would be improved — or be more enjoyable — if you partnered with someone else who has skills that are complimentary to yours?”

HemphillBar0711-133Barbara Hemphill is a Nationally known Productivity Expert, helping people eliminate the physical, digital, and emotional clutter that prevents them for accomplishing their work and enjoying their lives! To book Barbara as your next Keynote Speaker or Seminar/Workshop Presenter: contact Sue Falcone at 1-888-766-3155 or email her at sue@simplysuespeaks.com.

It’s Work Positive Wednesday with Dr. Joey Faucette

4 Questions You Positively Must Ask to Find Your Dream Team

DreamTeamAs a business coach, it’s as familiar to me as the chorus of American Pie by Don Mclean, only instead of “the day the music died,” it’s “the day the employee died.”

It begins with something like, “She’s just not working out…” and wraps up with “It’s just hard to find the right person today.”

Whether you’re a small business owner or a C-Level Executive of a Fortune 50, you’re in search mode 24/7 for the right person in the right place at the right time for the right reasons. The conundrum lies in focusing too much on the person with little regard for the place, time, and reasons.

Here are four questions you positively must ask as you search for your Work Positive Dream Team members:

Where is the Place?
Place refers to the position on the team. Every football team has one quarterback, one center, two guards, two tackles, etc. Their places are defined clearly. Their assignments emerge from their places on the field. They are trained to know what to do when.

Does the position you’re seeking to fill have a complete description? Did the team participate in writing it? Is everyone’s mind clear about how the team Works Positive once it’s filled?

The largest deficiency I discover almost weekly in my coaching and consulting business is an inadequate understanding by leader, team and candidate of, “Where is the place on the team that this person fills?” Incomplete position descriptions are typically discovered by the candidate in the first 90 days when the “other duties as assigned by leader” take over the previously understood primary tasks.

When is the Time?
Time refers to a couple of realities. First, what happens once the person is hired? Is there a prescribed process for assimilation and integration?

Second, and this is most important, who will take the time in this process to train the new team member? When will the leader receive feedback from the trainer to monitor the process? What are the benchmarks for appropriate progress?

Even if all of the dominant tasks are exactly the same as the candidate performs currently for another company, your business culture is different. That means training is required for team and task integration to occur. Neglect training and you install a revolving door on your team.

What are the Reasons?
Reasons refers to an evaluation of the team opening. Why is this position open on the team now? What was the impact of our relationship with the immediate past team member on this opening? Is it a new position designed to increase capacity? Then what are the ripple effects on the team, i.e., who relinquishes what and how?

Discover the reasons for this opening by looking back at previous teammates’ experiences gathered from exit interviews or at a strategic planning process that led to the creation of the position so you forecast accurately for maximum effectiveness.

Who is the Person?
Finally you arrive at the person. Diagnostic tools are readily available to determine the person’s fit and finish with place, time, and reasons. You previously defined place, time, and reasons. Now you define who the person is that fills the position best.

Pursue an understanding of the person and who she or he really is by using case studies and role plays. Do personality indicators. Dig deeply into second-generation referrals. Examine social media content. Inviting someone on your team is analogous to getting married—for better, for worse. The key is to assure as many “better” experiences as possible.

You do just that as you positively ask these four questions and find your Dream Team.

 

JoeystandingDr. Joey Faucette is the internationally known author of the #1 Amazon best-seller, Work Positive in a Negative World: Redefine Your Reality & Achieve Your Business Dreams (Entrepreneur Press). He is a professional speaker who coaches business professionals to increase sales with greater productivity so they leave the office earlier to do what they love with their family and friends, leading individuals in organizations of every size to achieve amazing results. He and his wife have two adult daughters. They enjoy living on Pleasant Gap Farm with their three yellow Labs, three quarter horses, and one cat–Boo Radley.

To book Dr. Joey as your next Keynote Speaker or Seminar /Workshop Presenter,  contact Sue Falcone at sue@simplysuespeaks.com or call 1-888-766-3155.