DEFINITION OF SUCCESS: MAKING SOMEONE YOU CARE ABOUT PROUD OF YOU

#leaders #bosses #ServantLeadership #MakeSomeoneProud
Make a list of everyone you care about.
Then, find out what would make them proud of you. How would that feel?
John Addison, former Co-CEO of Primerica, closes his book, “Real Leadership: 9 Simple Practices for Leading and Living With Purpose,” with that action step.
In Addison’s case, he wanted to make his parents proud.
He points out that not everyone had the kind of caring parents that he did. In that case, find some other person or people you care about that you’d like to be proud of you.
Often, accomplishments that evoke pride don’t have much to do with money.
Sometimes, if success leads to money, it may not be WHAT you achieved that matters, but HOW you achieved it. How many people did you help become successful along the way, is a question you should ask yourself.
Addison’s point is that if you conduct yourself in a manner that makes someone you care about proud, success is likely to result.
Certainly, there are wealthy or privileged people out there who got that way but hurting others, or using others who did not reap their just rewards.
They may have accomplishments to brag about, and they may make THEMSELVES proud, but they may not evoke pride in many others, much less among others that they may care about.
Addison’s book tells his story of fighting hard to preserve the company as he and the many who were associated with it wanted it. Sometimes, in the business world, one company is taken over by another, and its culture – even its reason for being – is sacrificed.
Addison risked his own well-being to make sure that didn’t happen to his company.
So what do you think you could do to make someone you care about proud?
Of course, we’re assuming that you care whether anyone else is proud of you. Most, undoubtedly, do care.
Perhaps you might be looking for something to come into your life that will change how you see life.
Maybe you’ve run into some bad luck over the last few years. You might even think that the chances of anything good happening to you are slim to none.
It could be that you aren’t looking in the right places.
If you are looking to change your life, there are many ways out there to do that. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You’ll see the stories of people who decided they were going to do something different, and found a way to evoke pride from those they care about.
One might have to think and do things a bit differently, but it can be done.
So don’t just make yourself proud. Sure, it can stoke your ego to do that. But you’ll probably find more success if you do something that will make someone you care about proud.
Peter

REAL LEADERS SHARE CREDIT WITH OTHERS

#leaders #bosses #ServantLeadership
Really great leaders share credit for good things and shoulder the responsibility when things go wrong.
A mediocre leader tries to impress people with how important he or she is. A great leader impresses upon people how important THEY are.
These are among the “Nine Simple Practices for Leading and Living With Purpose” in John Addison’s book, “Real Leadership.”
A boss is different from a leader. A boss can be a good leader, but a boss, or, if you prefer, a manager, tends to give orders and expects his staff to carry them out.
Real leaders, who may or may not be a “boss,” will help his or her staff or colleagues do their jobs by giving them what they need to be the most productive. As Addison puts it, they will shine a light on their people not to look for what they may do wrong, but to make sure what they do right gets the proper attention.
Addison’s book talks about the Hawthorne Effect,” in which a Chicago company told its employees that it was going to study them to look for ways to increase productivity. About all the company did, Addison says, is brighten the lights in the workplace.
Now, one could look at that as boss trying to find ways to get more work out of the people for the same wages. But the workers didn’t see it that way, Addison says.
They were so delighted that someone was paying attention to them that productivity soared.
The trick for the leaders is to KEEP paying attention to the workers and KEEP giving them the credit for the good things they do.
Certainly, not all employees will respond the same way. But if you are a leader and you hire and screen well, most will.
We’ve all worked for “bosses” of one degree or another. Sometimes we have to suck it up and work for people temporarily, just because we need to.
When you work for a real leader, who sees his or her job as working for YOU, work becomes almost pleasure.
Are you working just for a “boss”?
Do you see yourself as a leader in the making?
Do you want to find other leaders to work with, who will teach you things that a boss never would?
If so, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You’ll see and hear stories of servant leadership in the flesh.
It doesn’t take much to shine a light on others, Addison writes. But you have to check your ego at the door, and realize that helping others often brings success your way, too.
If you have a long-term goal to be a great leader, sometimes you might have to look outside your comfort zone to find the vehicle that will get you there.
Peter

HOW GOOD IS YOUR BOSS: PART 2

#BadBosses #leaders #managers
Most of us who’ve had jobs have seen different styles in managers.
There are some that left us, as employees, pretty much alone to do our jobs. They interfered only when necessary and appropriate.
Others wanted to know everything, have a say in everything, be copied on everything etc. They are known as micromanagers.
Debra Auerbach, a writer for the Advice and Resources section of CareerBuilder.com, issued a few tips on dealing with micromanagers. Her article appeared in the Feb. 21, 2016, edition of The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville.
Her first tip in dealing with a micromanager is to be on top of your game. You don’t want to give that boss more reason to nitpick, she writes.
Secondly, she suggests determining whether you are a target. See whether the manager picks on others he or she supervises, as much as he or she picks on you.
Thirdly, she suggests building trust. The manager has to trust you if you have any chance of getting “more space” from that manager.
She also suggests providing frequent updates to the manager, trying your best to adapt to that management style and deciding whether working in this environment is a deal-breaker for you.
We’ve all either worked for, or have seen in action, micromanagers. As discussed previously, leaders don’t micromanage. Leaders hire the right people and provide the environment in which the employees are empowered to do their jobs the best way they know how.
Ideally, the boss is doing what he or she does best, so he or she doesn’t have the time or inclination to worry about what the employees do best. Sure, there are certain expectations. But, if the leader has done his job correctly, he or she has no worries about those expectations being met or exceeded.
What kind of environment do you work in? Do you work for a micromanager? Many of them are not necessarily hostile toward you, but they annoy you and make your job more difficult than it should be.
Most jobs have stressful components. Micromanagers add to that stress. Leaders do their best to relieve as much of the stress as possible.
Micromanagers will still be all over your case when you are shorthanded because someone is out sick or on vacation. Leaders will understand that you are working shorthanded, and pitch in to help pick up some of the workload.
A micromanager can ruin the career of a perfectly good person by nitpicking. That manager may even set out to hold his or her people back from advancement. A leader will encourage his or her people to move on, when the opportunity is better for that employee, and even help that person get what he or she wants.
If your boss is nitpicking you to death, you may have to take time outside of work to find other opportunities to earn income, so you can make such nitpicking a deal-breaker. For one of the best ways to do that, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Eventually, you could be the leader that helps others advance.
Remember, some nitpicky bosses don’t mean you harm. It’s just who they are. You are who you are. If you understand them, you can better get along with them, until you are able to move on. Don’t stop looking for new places to go.
Peter

HOW GOOD IS YOUR BOSS: PART 1

#BadBosses #leaders #managers
The Peter Principle is alive and well in many companies.
In a nutshell: A person becomes very talented and skilled in a certain area. He is promoted to manage that area. He becomes a terrible boss.
Jeff Vrabel discusses this in an article about bosses in the August 2015 issue of Success magazine.
“Some people are natural-born leaders. Others are cruel, inhuman monsters,” reads a sub-headline over Vrabel’s article.
We’ve come to expect, and Vrabel’s article points out, that those employees who perform well are rewarded by moving up to management. In most organizational structures, that is the only way to move up. But a good engineer, a good technician or a good marketer doesn’t always make a good leader. Too often, the opposite is true.
It’s important here to understand the difference between a manager and a leader. Managing is learned. Leadership tends to be natural.
So what happens? The promoted employee is given a list of procedures, a system, if you will, to learn. So he learns to be a manager. And, he or she isn’t even that good at managing.
“Leadership is personal. There’s no single way of leading, no silver bullet,” Vrabel quotes Deborah Ancona, faculty director of the MIT Leadership Center. “We can’t be perfect at everything. So if you’re someone’s boss, the trick is to find out what you’re really good at and what you need to ramp up on, and getting better at both,” Vrabel quotes Ancona.
As a boss, you could be doing everything YOUR boss is telling you to do, but your staff may still hate you. It’s human nature to like some people better than others. It’s also human nature to give more positive attention to some employees, and more negative attention to others.
When you mix the two traits of human nature, it can sometimes turn toxic. You may have a good employee, but, for some reason, you may not like him or her as well as you like some others. The employee senses that, and feels as if he or she is not being treated fairly. That puts added stress on the good employee, and that could manifest into the loss of that employee, or discord within the organization.
More importantly for the employee, he or she may not advance as far as he or she would like, or is capable of. That, too, could ruin a good career.
Managers have to work at treating everyone underneath them as fairly as they can. Leaders have to lead in their own way, as Ancona put it. It’s great to have high expectations of your staff. But if they don’t see you as having those high expectations of yourself, you won’t get the production or cooperation you want.
Many organizations foster competition among employees, rather than cooperation and teamwork. A good rule of thumb: If you are after the same goals, competition wastes energy. If each person or group in the same organization has different goals, it’s a recipe for disaster.
Have you been, or are you still, being frustrated by bad bosses? Are you feeling stuck under the duress of someone who doesn’t inspire you? You may have to look at developing a way to eventually fire that bad boss. There are many such ways out there for anyone. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Who knows? You could turn into the leader you’ve always wanted, or wanted to be.
The best players almost never make the best coaches. The best employees don’t always make the best leaders. If you run a company, look for ways to reward your good employees without taking them away from what they do best, and most love to do. If you are a good at your job, and love what you do, don’t be afraid to say NO to a job you don’t want, even if it pays more. There are many other ways to add money to your coffers.
Leaders, often quietly, make themselves apparent. For instance, beware the person who wants to take credit for everything. Look for the person who wants to always GIVE credit to someone else.
Peter

LIVES OF ORDER, BOREDOM

#lifeisgood #UnchainTheElephant #findyourpassion

“I had been seduced into a life of little conviction – a logical, systematic existence. My best talents had been buried beneath well-intentioned, but ultimately lifeless rules, meant to hem me into the corporate fabric.”
Erik Wahl
Life is good.
It is. Really. But for some, a “good life” is not enough. They have been taught what a “good life” is, and they live by what they are taught. Yet, they long to do something else — something their parents, teachers, preachers and bosses would never advise them to do.
Erik Wahl, in his book “Unchain the Elephant: Reframe Your Thinking to Unleash Your Potential,” compares an elephant’s behavior in the wild, vs. an elephant’s behavior in captivity. He points out that elephants that are born in captivity are chained to trees and posts. When they test the chain, and realize they can’t go anywhere, they eventually learn that they are not supposed to go anywhere. As a result, the tether becomes unnecessary and the captors need not fear the elephant will take off.
Wahl was told at a young age by a teacher that art was not his strength. He quickly became conditioned to believe that he would never be an artist. Yet, eventually he became a well-known graphic artist – but only after he got good grades, played by the rules and had a great corporate career.
“I gave away my freedom at a young age,” Wahl says.
Many of us want to please our elders. They purport to know what is best for us. So, as children, we listen, obey and are guided to a “good life,” whether we like it or not. Our elders truly believe they are only after our best interest.
But what if adulthood comes, and we find that though life is “good,” something is missing. How many people can, like Wahl, reflect on that, THEN take the steps to unleash a passion. Without passion, we go through the motions of life. Those motions may lead us to good things, but it is like pedaling a stationary bike. You might be making progress toward good health, but you are not going anywhere. Life is so good where you are, you believe, there is no need to go anywhere?
We all learn to take pleasure in little things. We are told to stop and smell the roses, as the song goes, but not if it’s going to delay your next work project. Completing work projects gives you the money to make life “good.”
What if you could make money without completing such projects? What if money came to you while you were stopping to smell the roses?
What if you could pursue your passion without worrying about making a living? Believe it or not, there are many ways out there to do that. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. If you can be financially successful pursuing your passion, as Wahl and others have done, that’s a gift. But many need a financial cushion to give them the time to pursue a passion.
Are you a chained elephant? Are you an elephant without the chain, who has been taught never to escape? Is what you have learned about creating a good life enough for you? If so, your stamina is to be admired. If not, and have a passion you might not dare pursue, think about the chained – and tame, unchained – elephant. With instincts marginalized, it has everything it needs for a “good” life.
Go wild, if you dare. You just might find a great escape.
Peter

BE AND STAY POSITIVE

John Maxwell is always a positive person.
It’s his strength, but positive people, who look for the best in everyone, sometimes get burned.
Maxwell, an author and leadership expert, discusses this in his book, “The 5 Levels of Leadership.”
Maxwell believes that it’s better to be always positive, and get burned once in a while, than to be negative and skeptical, and never take risks or think big.
The world is very different today, from decades ago. Almost everything we do involves taking a risk.
Let’s say you are working at your job, and see something you think could improve the operation. Let’s say you could act on it right then. Would you do it? Or, would you wait, talk to your boss about it and let HIM decide whether it should be done.
Of course, the latter is the safe course of action. After all, it’s not your company. You just work there. You just do what you’re told. You also might think that even if your boss agrees with you, that those above him may not. Your boss, fearful of his job and career, will pass any heat down to you, even if you tell the bigger bosses that you’d discussed this ahead of time.
The more productive companies will applaud your initiative. If your boss passes the heat down to you, why not just take the risk and claim all the credit. Your boss may be angry with you that you didn’t let him in on what you were doing, but so be it. A good boss will applaud you for taking the initiative, and bask in the credit because he hired you and molded a great employee.
Focusing on the positive also requires optimism. Remember that very few pessimists really succeed. They may climb a little, but pessimism gets in the way of being creative and innovative.
How can you tell that a person is positive, or how can you learn to be positive?
When you ask the question, “how are you,” what is the typical answer? If you hear, “I’m OK,” or “I’m getting by,” or “I’m here,” or “I’m on the right side of the dirt,” chances are these folks are not positive.
Positive people will usually respond with, “I’m great, how are you?” or, “I’m blessed, how are you?” You see, positive people are grateful for every day. They are grateful for everything good in their lives. And, positive people sincerely want to know how YOU are doing.
Positive people believe that the best years of their lives are ahead of them, no matter what. They don’t long for the past. Usually, they don’t fight for the status quo, unless their lives are exactly where they want them to be. There are few positive people who don’t see even greater things in the future.
The less positive will wax nostalgic about how things used to be. They will fight losing battles, trying to get back to those days. They will work very hard to resist change. They go home after some misfortune and wonder what might have been.
All of that wastes energy and keeps them from doing what they need to do to improve their future. Whereas, a positive person will work WITH change and embrace it. He knows that no matter what happens, he will do what he needs to do to make his future bright, and fulfill his dreams.
If you are a positive person, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. See what other positive people are doing to fulfill their dreams.
Also remember the best thing that you can do to stay positive is to hang around with other positive people. Don’t let the dream stealers get you down!
Peter

WORK, INSURANCE AND THE FUTURE

The media is abuzz with stories about employers cutting full-time workers back to part time because they believe health care reform will be prohibitively expensive.
If you are in that situation, there is a silver lining.
The time your boss has freed up for you is time you can use to find other ways to make money.
Now, you may say you are just a working stiff, and you need all the hours your boss can give you – not to mention the insurance benefits he might be taking away.
You also might think that this is temporary. Your boss will see what a penny-wise and pound-foolish decision it was to cut your hours back, and the extra hours you would give him will more than cover what it’s costing him in salary and benefits.
After all, if he didn’t need you for 40 or more hours, he wouldn’t have hired you for 40 or more hours. He would not have been that stupid, would he?
It’s tough to call this decision by some employers a knee-jerk reaction. It’s been talked about for a long time. But it may indeed be short-sighted. Your boss may just complicate his life more than he realizes if he does this.
For example: he’s probably going to have to hire another part-timer to cover the hours he is taking away from you. That part-timer may not be as good at the work as you are, or have as much experience. He’s going to have to allow for time for the new guy to get up to speed. How many sales, or how much productivity, will he lose by that? How much is that worth to him, in the overall scheme of things?
Retired syndicated radio talk-show host Neal Boortz talked about this Monday, Aug. 19, 2013, while filling in for his replacement, Herman Cain. He says that temporary employment agencies might find an opportunity in this tumult. Temporary workers would be great at filling in the gaps left by cutting back full-timers to part time. Well, bosses, good luck with that!
Good, long-term employees have a value that you can’t measure entirely with salary and benefits. Some years ago, there was an adage among employers: in the first three years of an employee’s tenure, that employee was giving you more than you were paying in total compensation. After three years, as benefits and salary increase, the employee was suddenly costing you more than he was giving you back in labor.
But the intangibles that a good, long-term employee gives his employer can be overlooked. For example: the person who’s been in the job for a few years can usually do it with minimal direction and supervision, presuming he is a good, loyal worker. He might even see things in the job that the boss doesn’t , and create efficiences he doesn’t even realize.
Yes, employers, this is real money thatmay or may not be obvious – until that person is gone for a time. So why would bosses do this to those folks who have made them prosperous?
As for the employee, the unintended gift your boss may be giving you is time to check out other ways to make money. There are many, but to look at one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. It’s been said that some people work full time at their jobs, and part time on their fortunes. If you now are working “part time” at your job, here’s your chance to gain time to work on your fortune.
One day, your boss may be surprised that the good person he’s had for years is leaving “to pursue other (more prosperous) opportunities.” All this, because of pre-hyped fear of insurance costs. Let’s hope the temporary worker he hires works out. Good luck with that, bosses!
Peter