Tag Archives: leadership skills

Work On Offering More Positive Feedback

Work on offering more positive feedback

To improve morale and get better results, work on offering more positive feedback. As a leader or manager your responsible for providing everyone with appropriate feedback so that each person knows where they stand and how to optimize their efforts.

Work on Offering More Positive Feedback

Effective feedback energizes; nitpicking de-motivates.

Nitpicking is:

  1. One way. You give but don’t invite feedback. It’s frustrating. Still worse, it’s belittling.
  2. Always negative.
  3. Low benefit.
  4. Demoralizing. Watch people when they walk away. Do their heads always hang and their shoulders droop?

People who crave feedback include:

  1. New hires.
  2. Freshly promoted employees.
  3. Those facing new challenges.
  4. Perfectionists.
  5. Self-critical downers.
  6. Highly motivated achievers.

  People who resist hearing feedback may be:

  1. Insecure and fearful.
  2. Drifting.
  3. Stubborn.
  4. Not committed to the pursuit of excellence.
  5. In over their heads.


Positive feedback is best served alone.

Don’t use it to buffer “bad” news. See the good – say the good – walk away. An abundance of positive feedback creates environments where corrective feedback goes down more smoothly.


What feedback tips or warnings can you share?

What does great feedback look like?

This short excerpt from Leadership Freak gets right to the point when it comes to positive feedback. Work on offering more positive feedback to employees and other with thesee simple guidelines. Sometimes feedback occurs spontaneously so try to remember these tips and you’ll usually get the results you were hoping for along with a great deal of respect.




How You Can Profit from Sitting on a Board of Non-Profits

Do you know how you can profit from sitting on the board of a non-profit? We know this may sound counter-intuitive at first, but many leaders have talked about the myriad ways in which non-profits have served them as leaders. In this article posted on Forbes by Geri Stengel, you can see how volunteering for a non-profit board make work for you.

How You Can Profit from Sitting on a Board of Non-Profits

Let’s face it: When you’re the head of a small business, you want to develop your leadership skills and, if you are like most entrepreneurs, contribute to your community. What if you could do good and beef up your leadership skills at the same time?

As a business owner, you have more than money to contribute. Being on the board of a nonprofit is great way to give back. It is also a great way to improve your leadership skills.

Many big companies recognize that being on nonprofit boards builds “soft” leadership skills. They pay for rising stars in their companies to go through nonprofit board training and encourage nonprofit board service, according to Nicole T. Sebastian, deputy executive director of  VCG Governance Matters, which places people on nonprofit boards.

Founders of small to mid-sized companies also recognize the importance of board service as way to improve their leadership skills. Many successful entrepreneurs — some pretty big players — credit their success to integrating nonprofit work into their business plan.

original article here

If this is something you have never thought about before, we ask you to do think about how you can profit from sitting on the board of a non-profits. Not only can you learn skills you may not have acquired while staying in your comfort zone, but you can also gain connections, mentors, peers, and even friendships.


The Art of Personal Development

The art of personal development is one that a great leader is always trying to master. Even more than that, a great leader knows that it is an art form that is never really mastered by anyone; therefore, as leaders we must “be like the water” – easily adaptable to what comes our way and fluidly flowing around any perceived obstacle. In this piece from The Houston Chronicle Online posted by  Laura Jerpi, we learn the skills necessary to be like the water.

The Art of Personal Development

Sharpening your personal development skills can help you to become a more effective leader. A successful leader always should be open to change and willing to grow as both an authority figure and an individual. It is important to continuously work to improve your leadership skills to keep your skill set properly aligned with the constantly changing goals and priorities of today’s professional work force.

Improve Interpersonal Skills

An effective leader needs to have good people skills. Your employees and colleagues should feel comfortable coming to you with any problems they have, not intimidated and afraid of your reaction. Taking the time to ask for the opinions of your colleagues and listening carefully to the viewpoint of each person also shows that you respect them. Your colleagues also will appreciate the little things, such as paying them a compliment for work well done or remembering the name of a person you’ve recently met.

Assess Your Skills

Performing a periodic assessment of your own skills can help to ensure your competencies are at the level they should be. If your profession requires knowledge that doesn’t change too quickly, performing this assessment once a year is sufficient. If you’re in a rapidly changing field — such as web design, where new skills are constantly needed to keep up with changes in technology — you should complete this evaluation every few months to stay up-to-date.

Increase Your Knowledge

A good leader never stops learning and always wants to improve his skill set. Making a list of areas you would like to improve, such as acquiring a specific skill set or improving your existing abilities, can help you to become a more well-rounded, valuable leader. After identifying places for improvement, seek ways to obtain this knowledge. Attending industry-relevant conferences or lunch-and-learn sessions at your office, asking for extra assignments at work, finding a mentor, taking online courses and subscribing to applicable professional blogs are all ways to expand your knowledge and improve your job performance.

Inspiring Others

Encouraging and inspiring team members to attain their own personal goals and reach their potential can help you to become a better leader. Involving each person in planning team goals for the future makes everyone feel like a valued member of the group and helps to get them excited for new projects. Setting high standards for individual performance challenges team members to step out of their comfort zone. Rewarding group members for their hard work shows them that they’re appreciated and makes them feel like an integral part of the team.

original article here

We feel that the art of personal development is essential for the mastery of Enlightened Leadership. What are they ways you do work on yourself and how does that help you in your role? How do you stay fluid and free in an environment of constant change?


7 Attributes of a Good Leader

We find that sometimes, a bullet-pointed list is just what we need to keep a positive attitude in focus. It is like having those little post-its on your mirror or your fridge that remind you of what is important. We think these 7 attributes of a good leader, posted by Barbara White on Greenstein, Rogoff, Olson & Co are right on the mark.

7 Attributes of a Good Leader

How often have you heard the comment, “He or she is a born leader?” There are certain characteristics found in some people that seem to naturally put them in a position where they’re looked up to as a leader.

Whether in fact a person is born a leader or develops skills and abilities to become a leader is open for debate. There are some clear characteristics that are found in good leaders. These qualities can be developed or may be naturally part of their personality. Let us explore them further.

  1. A good leader has an exemplary character. It is of utmost importance that a leader is trustworthy to lead others. A leader needs to be trusted and be known to live their life with honestly and integrity. A good leader “walks the talk” and in doing so earns the right to have responsibility for others. True authority is born from respect for the good character and trustworthiness of the person who leads.
  2. A good leader is enthusiastic about their work or cause and also about their role as leader. People will respond more openly to a person of passion and dedication. Leaders need to be able to be a source of inspiration, and be a motivator towards the required action or cause. Although the responsibilities and roles of a leader may be different, the leader needs to be seen to be part of the team working towards the goal. This kind of leader will not be afraid to roll up their sleeves and get dirty.
  3. A good leader is confident. In order to lead and set direction a leader needs to appear confident as a person and in the leadership role. Such a person inspires confidence in others and draws out the trust and best efforts of the team to complete the task well. A leader who conveys confidence towards the proposed objective inspires the best effort from team members.
  4. A leader also needs to function in an orderly and purposeful manner in situations of uncertainty. People look to the leader during times of uncertainty and unfamiliarity and find reassurance and security when the leader portrays confidence and a positive demeanor.

Original post here

Of course, we realize that there are far more than only 7 attributes of a good leader. We’d love to hear any you think have been left out of this list.


Team Building Skills for Project Managers

free from morguefile.com

Team building skills for project managers are not much different than a coach leading a team of players to victory.

The workplace is fast paced and often impersonal which can cause employees to feel disconnected and overlooked. Wayne Turmel  wrote this piece for CBS Moneywatch last year and I think it has some great team building skills for project managers.

Team Building Skills for Project Managers

Basically, a team gets put together, there’s some degree of dram and stress as people figure out their roles and the written (and unwritten) rules of working together and then they get on with it. The faster teams get through the storming stage, the more work gets done and more productive the team.
Good project managers, like the blogger Syed Rayhan, have a list of questions they like to ask and share the results with their peers. His list includes:

  • What’s your role on the project? (If you’ve ever worked on a team and wonder why so-and-so was included, you know how important this is. It also allows managers to delegate tasks and answers more effectively.)
  • What is your main expertise? ( “Oh, so Raj is a database expert? Maybe he can help me with this other problem I’m having”. This is a great way to get the team to work together and form bonds beyond the task level.
  • What new capabilities are you learning on this project? This one is not only a chance for people to express gratitude about what they’re learning, but also a non-threatening way to let the team know this is their first time on a software project like this, so be gentle!
  • What are your pet peeves in the workplace? If someone doesn’t like working in a certain way, it’s best you know that before you learn the hard way or just tick them off. Setting boundaries is an important part of working together.
  • Tell us one thing about you that nobody knows? Obviously this should be amusing and non-incriminating.
  • What’s your favorite hobby and why do you like it? It’s amazing how much easier it is to form a working relationship with someone that you share a passion with. A favorite sports team (or at least a favorite sport and a good-natured rivalry), a shared interest in bird photography, or almost anything else that helps you think of that teammate as something other than a nameless, faceless task machine.

Certainly every group of workers will respond differently to this kind of team building technique and some may feel it is unnecessary, but as the leader you can modify the questions to suit your needs and still include the whole team.


Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Middle East

We can talk about the theoretical importance of these two qualities in a successful leader, but how does one translate the theory into team inspiration? In this article posted by Rahilla Safar on Huff Post World, read how one woman is making a big difference using her skills of entrepreneurship and innovation in the Middle East to help her team understand the significance of personal responsibility .

Entrepreneurship and Innovation in the Middle East

Entrepreneurship and innovation have become buzz words in much of the Middle East. What are some examples of work you’ve done where you felt that you truly had an impact in this realm?

Leena Al Olaimy: Entrepreneurship and innovation have certainly swept the region by storm, and it’s time social entrepreneurship and social innovation were in the spotlight! Last year we developed and ran a pilot of our Leadership Bridge Program (LBP), in partnership with Baraka Ventures.

Most of the Middle East’s youth population lacks access to social entrepreneurship education and a foundation in ethics and social responsibility — which goes hand in hand with creating leaders who can accelerate social change.

We created the LBP, a three-day intensive program that promotes youth empowerment, and inspires young leaders to play an active role in constructively shaping their communities and countries for the better. Essentially, it is about molding and empowering the region’s future responsible business, government, religious and community leaders. We’re currently trying to roll the LBP out across the region, and provide a platform for Arab youth to connect and collaborate on regional issues from a young age.

As much as I value the work we have done with the private and public sectors, the last day of the LBP was definitely one of the most moving moments for me since co-founding 3BL.

With over half of the MENA (Middle East North Africa) region being under 20, do you think there is enough emphasis on teaching youth leadership?

Leena Al Olaimy: I think the attention towards teaching leadership is growing, but you can’t ‘learn’ leadership theoretically without actually putting those leadership skills into practice. I don’t think there are enough opportunities that allow students to hone their leadership skills. I also don’t think there is enough of an emphasis on responsible leadership.

Moreover, often times, leadership programs will only focus on students who are in the highest percentile in terms of academic achievement — which is not necessarily an accurate indicator of an individual’s capacity to become a leader.

We have a lot to learn from people such as Leena Al Olaimy, whose entrepreneurship and innovation in the Middle East are paving the way for how to inspire our teams and thus succeed our ever-changing global market.


10 Helpful Tips for Effective Leadership

If we could simply list them, what are the essential qualities of an effective leader? If you have read our work, then you know how much we value bringing out the best in your people. In this article posted on News Olio, we found 10 helpful tips for effective leadership - in a nutshell.

10 Helpful Tips for Effective Leadership

Many people have a favorite teacher or boss who helped to motivate them into accomplishing important goals. Good leaders are made, not born. Here are suggestions for enhancing the directional skills of those in leadership positions.

  1. Value people. Instead of squeezing every last drop of sweat from those under your authority, make it a point to encourage good performance and emphasize positive relationships. Let people know you care about them, and not just about the work they do. Warm greetings, personal comments, and friendly conversation at lunch or after hours help to smooth workplace relations.
  2. Lead by example. Instead of appointing someone else to do the “hard” jobs, give it a shot to assess difficulty level, and to show staff that you are not above doing such work. Don’t goof off on the job, or others will expect the right to do it, too. Avoid using company resources for personal benefit, like making long distance calls, Internet shopping, or using office supplies for non-business work.
  3. Display a strong character. Remember that others are watching you. Control negative emotions like anger, frustration, and irritation. Practice good judgment, patience, and fair play in dealing with office situations. Leaders sit on pedestals. Everything you do will be magnified and evaluated by those you work with.

Original article here

Sometimes we like to make it simple – so there you have it, in a nutshell: 10 helpful tips for effective leadership. Please share with us how you have integrated some of these to help build innovative and motivated teams.


Leadership Skills from a Fishing Guide

What do fishing and leadership have to do with each other? Maybe you think that fishing is something you do after you have retired from leadership, but not so. In this piece written by Monte Burke and posted on Forbes, we see how we can get leadership skills from a fishing guide - someone who is dealing with a wide variety of people and personalities on a daily basis.

Leadership Skills from a Fishing Guide

Guiding is an unusual job. These small business owners–entrepreneurs, really–work in an office that’s as unpredictable as it is beautiful, in close and constant contact with their often demanding clients for a full day and sometimes even longer. Perhaps only golf caddies come close to having the demands put upon a fishing guide. A guide is, simultaneously, a coach, a temporary employee, a therapist and even a doctor. We pay them to show us where the fish are and how to catch them. They soothe our bruised egos when we miss that shot at a big fish. They occasionally have to pull hooks out of our heads.

Legendary Everglades fishing guide, Steve Huff, once told me that his job is, simply, to “make an angler’s dream come true.” That’s a decent amount of pressure to put on oneself.

I’ve found that fishing guides, because of the many hats they are forced to wear, and the multitude of personalities they are forced to deal with, tend to have a great perspective on the way the world works. Recently, I asked four of the best fishing guides in the business to tell me the best leadership lessons they’ve learned from guiding, advice that is applicable to many different jobs, both on and off the water.

original article here

If you would have never dreamed that you can learn leadership skills from a fishing guide, then perhaps you have missed other opportunities to learn from the unexpected. Always keep your eyes open for opportunities to learn and become better.


The Current State of Leadership


Development Dimensions International (DDI) a respected,  global talent management company recently published their Global Leadership Forecast 2011. This report is one of the largest leadership studies of it’s kind, with more than 2,600 participating organizations. The research provides some interesting perspectives on thecurrent state of leadership and future leadership needs. Specifically, the report looked to uncover the answers to the following questions:

  • What is the overall quality of leadership in organizations today? How does it compare to previous years?
  • Do organizations have a sufficient supply of capable leaders to meet tomorrow’s business challenges?
  • What can HR professionals do to revolutionize the development of their leaders?
  • Is it time to radically innovate not only products and business models, but also the very way we manage?
  • What impact can we have by moving the needle on leadership quality?

The research defined a leaders as “someone who manages the performance or responsibilities of individuals in an organization.

Research Findings

This research study produced interesting findings I have extracted some of the research findings I found interesting, those that stood out and caught my attention.

Effective Leadership Matters

  • The research demonstrated that organizations with the highest quality leaders were 13 times more likely to outperform their competition in key bottom-line metrics such as financial performance, quality of products and services, employee engagement, and customer satisfaction.


  • Leaders who reported that their organization’s current leadership quality as poor, only 6% of them were in organizations that outperformed their competition.
  • Organizations with higher quality leadership were up to three times more likely to retain more employees than their competition. by GEORGE AMBLER

Developing Leadership Skills Through Volunteer Work

Not everyone is fully established in a leadership position.  It takes time to build the skills and experience to make your way into a leadership role.  One of the best ways to cultivate yourself as a leader is by developing leadership skills through volunteer work. Volunteering gives you an opportunity to work without any pressure and to discover what makes other people want to offer themselves to a cause free of charge.  In this article posted by Alice Korngold in http://www.fastcompany.com, we learn the leadership benefits of volunteer work.

Developing Leadership Skills Through Volunteer Work

People grow and become leaders by making a commitment to a cause, and having personal responsibility and accountability.

For those of us in civilian life, there are also ways for us to develop as leaders through experience: through volunteer service. There are myriad nonprofit missions from which to choose, roles and positions in which to engage that are meaningful and productive, and paths for personal and professional advancement.

Nonprofit board service is particularly compelling for business people and professionals seeking to develop as leaders. While the CEOs and staffs of nonprofits build and run programs and services, boards of  directors provide strategic and financial leadership to ensure each organization’s vitality, integrity, and fulfillment of its mission. Business people who bring valuable skills and experience as well as diverse backgrounds and perspectives are uniquely equipped to help regional, national, and global organizations to achieve success in addressing poverty, education, health care, conservation of natural resources, and other key issues.

Original Article here

Developing leadership skills through volunteer work is one of the easiest ways to get yourself in the game and develop your potential as a leader, while at the same time, helping a good cause.