“We will either find a way or make one.” – Hannibal

Positive Quote: “We will either find a way or make one.” – Hannibal

 

I chose this quote today, as I am not feeling 100%. When I am not at my best, I need to find a way to do what needs to be done. I have found that in these types of days, my focus becomes more driven based on what I have to get done and therefore, I defer the smaller, non-urgent items. Doing this helps me make fewer shifts between items and take the time needed to clear my head before tackling the next thing on my plate.

 

This quote also reminds me of times where I may have believed I was ‘stuck’ and could not see a path forward. At those times, I needed to step back and not box myself into one path or another. I needed to expand my thoughts and perhaps collaborate with others, based on the issue. In these times the solution ended up being a hybrid or something that did not enter into the conversation earlier. In essence, we made a way.

 

What do you think of this quote?

 

Have a fabulous day.

Priscilla

Trust and conflict, how they work well together

Positive Quote: “When there is trust, conflict becomes nothing but the pursuit of truth, an attempt to find the best possible answer.” – Patrick Lencioni – The Advantage

 

Trust and conflict, one may wonder how they go together, yet they do and very well. If one has trust then conflict is more about challenging ideas, gaining new insights, and understanding the view of someone else and the reasons behind it. It can lead to new ideas, new strategies, and what may come out of it can be far greater than what went into it by each individual.

 

I am a firm believer that being able to disagree (respectfully) and voice a differing opinion is what leads to success. If there is not trust, the one does not feel safe in sharing their thoughts.

 

This reminds me of a time in a prior job where we had panel interviews and candidates could meet with 10-12 people in a given interview, spanning 2-3 different meetings. I was one of three people for my panel interviewing a gentleman for a technology operations position. When the interviews were over, those who were part of the panels, came together to voice our thoughts on moving forward with the candidate. I was the single dissenting voice and did not recommend moving forward with the candidate. If I did not have a level of trust with the other panel interviewers, I would not have been able to voice the reasoning behind my thoughts. They listened and the majority still felt like the candidate would be a good fit. We hired him and thankfully those with whom I aired my thoughts with, had not forgotten them and we were able to quickly address several performance issues that ultimately led to his leaving the company. This situation reinforced for me that once trust is built, we must speak our thoughts and yes, to have conflict, this in turn leads to a stronger team.

 

Did I hesitate before speaking up, yes, yet ultimately the trust had been built and I did.

 

I am not saying you should go into every conversation looking for conflict. I am saying that if conflict is raised, do so respectfully and with knowledge that (hopefully) a foundation of trust exists.

 

What do you think of this quote?

 

Have a marvelous day.

 

Priscilla

 

Overcoming our need for invulnerability

Positive Quote: “Remember teamwork begins by building trust. And the only way to do that is to overcome our need for invulnerability.” – Patrick Lencioni – The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

 

This took me many years as a new manager to really get. Once I did get it, it made for a more cohesive team.

 

To me, what this quote means is that, as a leader we have to not only accept that we don’t have all the answers, we have to be authentic with our teams. If something comes up that is an unknown, say it is an unknown and work towards a solution together.

 

In my experience, if a manager continually demonstrates that they think they have all the answers, your people will stop coming to you with their solutions and ideas and will wait to be told what to do. This does not lead to teamwork; it leads to apathy and lack of engagement.

 

A leader needs to be able to admit they made a mistake and take accountability for their own decisions. This is never more important in rebuilding trust. If trust is lost, it takes a much harder effort and time investment to restore it. Not all broken trust can be restored; it depends on what led to the trust being broken.

 

I was mentoring someone a while ago who had broken the trust of their team by purposefully misleading them. They eventually found out about it and the trust was gone. When I had discussions with this manager, I provided the guidance that even though the team knew the truth; they had never heard an apology or information from their manager as to the full story. I recommended that the manager be upfront with the team and say, I did this, I shouldn’t have, I am sorry, and here is what I am going to do differently to rebuild the trust. Here is how I am going to be accountable and I appreciate the willingness to let me rebuild the trust. By showing you are not invulnerable and showing how this not only affected you but how you are moving forward, it can help rebuild the trust and teamwork on the team.

 

How do you demonstrate you are not invulnerable to your team(s)?

 

  • How do you show your authenticity?

 

  • What do you think of this quote?

 

Have a great day.

 

Priscilla

Rebreaking something that is broken is painful but necessary

Positive Quote: “A fractured team is just like a broken arm or leg; fixing it is always painful, and sometimes you have to rebreak it to make it heal correctly. And the rebreak hurts a lot more than the initial break, because you have to do it on purpose” – Patrick Lencioni – The Five Dysfunctions of a Team

 

I don’t know if I have ever mentioned this before, Patrick Lencioni is one of my top favorite business authors out there. I have read and reread his books more often than I can count and when I am mentoring someone, invariably I recommend one of Patrick’s books for them as recommended reading.

 

The Five Dysfunctions of a Team is a classic. It is written in a fable format, which can remove some of the soap box type books that are out there. There is no do this, do that, you are wrong if you do this, etc… you can picture your team and at times yourself in his writing. It removes the judgment in my opinion.

 

When it comes to a team, whether you inherited it, grew up on it, or built it, there will come a time, and more often more than once, where the team is fractured and not on the same page. The fix, which could range from strong coaching, counseling, up to the team organization changing, can be painful. The pain however, is the kind that you have to let happen, and provide support, guidance, and empathy, all while, as a leader doing the right thing. Ignoring the fractured team can lead to it being permanently broken and may cause severe damage to fix later on.

 

This brings to mind a situation I had to handle as a manager over a team I inherited. There was a team member who customers loved, he was sharp and could handle any situation thrown his way. Issues would be worked to the root cause and service would be restored or it would be escalated to the right team to address. The issue, it was his attitude. He treated others as beneath him and it impacted the morale of the other team members that were outside his circle. The conversations were hard; he did not see a problem because he achieved results. In the end, after exhausting coaching tools and other avenues, it got more direct with formalized write ups and strict action plan expectations. In the end he left the team. The support gap was something that was painful to deal with, yet the other team members dove in and in the end, were stronger for it. While I don’t regret the hard conversations, I do think back and realize that doing something purposefully was the right approach and the pain and hurt helped me and the rest of the team grow together.

 

When I talk to new managers or those getting assigned stretch goals, I let them know that they are human and not everything is easy. Being a manager doesn’t make people automatically listen. You have to build trust, keep your commitments, and not be afraid of confrontation. Yet the confrontation should be handled with empathy, support, and understanding. The ultimate goal is to all be on the same page and reaching for the same goals. Also, things don’t go away with time, they get worse and if the roots grow deep, fixing it will be so much more painful. Avoidance is not the answer.

 

To me, the hardest fix is if the manager is part of or is the issue. That is a different conversation for another day.

 

What do you think of this quote?

 

If you have never read one of Patrick’s books, I highly recommend them. A good start is ‘Death by Meeting’, it will introduce you to his style and thoughts around leadership. Each books is an easy to consume and flows nicely.

 

Have a great day.

Priscilla

Your future is here

Positive Quote: “The future is already here – it’s just not very evenly distributed.” – William Gibson

 

 

This quote stood out to me, not just for what it says, but for who said it. William Gibson is a pioneer in a science fiction genre called steampunk. I can remember the first time I was introduced to it, about 7 years ago. The integration of technology to humans seemed elegant to me. While, I have not been drawn into the books as much as the outward display, I am a fan in a sense.

 

Most science fiction has a bend towards a future, sometimes very different than the time we live in today. I won’t get into the fantasy, science fiction debate.

 

Back to the quote, the future is already here, I take that to mean that the future is not written in stone, we are able to make it what it is by the decisions we make and the choices we take. As for the not being evenly distributed, I would tend to agree. There is a difference in being passive versus engaged in driving your future. This could be something as simple as setting a goal to read 2-3 books a month on a subject that interests you to setting a goal and working towards it.

 

This quote has me wondering, what my future looks like. I believe I can realistically say that it looks much different than my childhood. While I would not go back to change anything in my past, as it made me who I am today, I can look back and be thankful that I am where I am in life. We all have our hurdles, our challenges, and our trying times. Yet, we also have the ability to help create our path around, out, or through things.

 

What do you think of this quote?

 

Have a great day.

Priscilla

 

Are you the best you?

Positive Quote: “It is never too late to be what you might have been.” – George Elliott

 

How does one know what they might have been? This is a challenging question. When I have people come to me to talk about their career or their desire to learn new things or to try something different, I believe it centers on this quote.

 

Time is relative…

 

  • If you are 55 years old and pick up a paintbrush for the first time to become an artist
  • If you are in your third year of college and want to change your major
  • If you are a manager in an organization and want to step back from leadership
  • If you want to go back to school and get a degree or certification
  • If you want to leave your industry and try something new
  • If you want to sing

 

There are so many things that this could apply to.

 

I have a main question I ask people who come to me with questions like this…. It is …..”What activity or item do you do, that when doing you have a smile on your face and you truly enjoy?”. Then we dig a little for clarity and ultimately, doing what makes you happy, while providing for your responsibilities and obligations is the key to being your best you.

 

While not everyone can quit their job and be a roadie or make it in the music industry, each person can do what makes sense for them in that chapter of their lives. If it is singing, try to get a ‘gig’ at a local venue. If it is painting, find a local class at a library or museum (cheap to free) and try your hand at it.

 

By taking a step towards that path, you can see what you can do and the road is as long or as far as you need it to be.

 

You can take me, for example, I am an introvert by nature. My Myers-Briggs personality indicator is INTJ. I have to be alone to recharge my batteries. Yet, I make an effort to meet people, to try new things, to challenge myself. You could say that my blogging is one of these things, as I am sharing a piece of my soul every time I write something down. Yes, sometimes it is draining mentally or emotionally, yet I want to be the best Priscilla I can be. What is right for me may not be right for others. We each are unique and different and should look within to see what works best for us.

 

I have a goal to not stop learning, to try new things, visit new places…even if it is just the town two towns over. You don’t know what the world has to offer to help you be you until you put yourself out there.

 

What do you think of this quote?

 

Have a great day!

Priscilla