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Archive for leadership expert

What Do Bosses Want? Begin Work on Time

Wednesday, June 11th, 2014

Yesterday, I conducted a leadership seminar in Salem, Oregon, and the subject of “what do bosses want” came up. Not surprisingly, showing up on time was at the top of the list. Certainly, this depends on what type of job you perform. For example, salespeople and managers are frequently out in the field. Yet, for the person expected to report for work at a specific time, it can affect the morale of everyone if they’re late.

Let’s say that you have an upcoming meeting. Showing up on time needs to be your number one priority if you want to be considered a good employee–even if you’re in sales, work from home, and go out on sales calls. Based on my in-depth conversations with managers, supervisors, human resources personnel, and others in leadership positions over the years, attendance ranks number one when bosses consider whether an employee is a good worker. Many young workers right out of school think they should be judged by the work they do, not by what time they show up for work and leave at the end of the day. However, most managers consider attendance and punctuality to be major success factors.

Attendance also tops the list of criteria when bosses have to fire one employee or another. Included in this first ranking is a factor you might not realize. Do you actually start working on time? Believe me, your boss as well as co-workers notice if you walk in, go to the bathroom or break room, make coffee, chat up a storm, and then finally start working much later. Even if you’re productive, a lot of supervisors worry about starting your work late because of how it affects the morale of others. Some bosses believe if they make allowances for you in this area, they’ll have to make allowances for others. And they don’t want to do that.

What do bosses want? Make sure you show up on time. Like it or not, others are watching you!

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

CREDENTIALS: Colleen Kettenhofen is an international workplace and leadership expert, award-winning corporate trainer, and motivational speaker. A media veteran, she has appeared on numerous radio shows around the country and has written more than 40 popular articles on diverse workplace issues. Colleen has delivered more than 1,100 fun and entertaining programs in 48 states and six countries. She is the author of 10 published audio programs and the book SECRETS YOUR BOSS ISN’T TELLING YOU.

A Portland, Oregon-based motivational speaker, Colleen Kettenhofen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars by calling (971)212-0479, or visiting www.BounceBackHigher.com

What Employers Look for on Interviews

Friday, June 6th, 2014

Later today, I’m going to be a guest on a radio show being interviewed by Doug McDuff on AM 1380 in Southern Wisconsin and Northern Illinois. The topic? What employers look for on interviews.

In these tough economic times, it’s especially important to learn what  interviewers look for that will make them hire you. For example, they want to see if you’ve conducted any research. Have you checked out their companies’ websites even if they’re well known? When I was conducting research for my book, Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You, a number of managers reported how impressed they were that some applicants brought printouts from the company website and asked questions based on what they’d read. This is notable because employers want a sense that you specifically want to work for their organization–not just any job will do.

After Doug’s radio show, I’ll post more information about what employers look for on interviews. Stay tuned!

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

An internationally recognized award-winning speaker, Colleen is the author of the book, Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You, as well as 10 unique audio programs available at www.BounceBackHigher.com

As a motivational speaker and leadership expert, Colleen has delivered more than 1,100 fun and entertaining programs before thousands in 48 states and six countries. She has served as a keynote speaker for conferences, corporate meetings, associations, Native-American tribes, and non-profits. Based in Portland, Oregon, Colleen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars by calling (971)212-0479.

 

 

What do bosses want from employees? Team players! In conducting in-depth conversations with hundreds of managers, supervisors and CEOs, this is part 2 in a series.

Part 1 talked about how managers repeatedly asked for “someone who is a proactive problem solver, not reactive–an employee who thinks ahead.” In part 2, we’ll explore the importance of getting along with others in the workplace. Let’s get started!

Be a team player willing to help your co-workers and customers. Admittedly, while conducting these in-depth conversations,  it was a surprise to me that “team player” was specifically mentioned over and over and ranked as the second top trait or behavior bosses want. Obviously, productivity is an important reason for this, but the effect that being a team player has on the morale of others scored even higher than productivity.

Bosses overwhelmingly mentioned “willing to help others, anyone” in terms of sharing job knowledge, skills, and ideas as well as “willingness to help customers.”

Simply put–and this is repeated throughout many of my articles, books, and blog posts–managers don’t want to be bothered with emotional conflicts among their employees. They frequently report, “I feel like a referee and a babysitter and I don’t want that role. I want my employees getting along and resolving conflict themselves.”

Bosses consider good employees to be those who attempt to resolve issues on their own first without always running to the person in charge. When I’m speaking, I often ask managers and CEOs in my audience, “Do any of you feel like you’re running an adult day care?” They laugh and say, “Yes! You must know some of my employees!”

Many managers and supervisors get promoted to management or leadership positions based on their hard skills or technical skills. They (and maybe you) received a promotion because they did a great job. But in these areas, the skills that got them promoted aren’t always the ones they need to manage people. That’s why they don’t want to deal with issues such as conflicts between employees. Not only that, these managers and CEOs are overloaded with work themselves and don’t have time to deal with emotional problems between co-workers.

So, what do bosses want from employees? Team players, proactive problem solvers and more. Stay tuned!

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

An internationally recognized award-winning speaker, Colleen Kettenhofen is the author of the book, Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You, as well as 10 unique audio programs.

As a Portland, Oregon-based motivational speaker, Colleen has delivered more than 1,100 fun and entertaining programs before thousands in 48 states and five countries. She has served as keynote speaker for conferences, corporate meetings, associations, Native-American tribes, and non-profits. Colleen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars. For more information, please visit http://www.BounceBackHigher.com

 

What Bosses Want from Employees

Tuesday, May 27th, 2014

In the coming days and weeks, I’m going to be sharing the top traits, qualities and characteristics that bosses want from employees and vice versa. This is based on hundreds of interviews that I conducted with managers, supervisors and CEOs for my book Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You.

Some of the things bosses want from employees will seem like common sense. Then again, as you know, common sense isn’t always commonly applied!

What Bosses Want from Employees

What’s big on their list? Be proactive and solutions-oriented; go above and beyond. When managers, supervisors and CEOs were asked to describe the traits and behaviors necessary for a subordinate to be considered a good employee, overwhelmingly I heard, “Someone who goes above and beyond.” That’s worth repeating: In today’s economy, for you to be considered a “good” employee, bosses expect you to go “above and beyond.” So, if necessary, work longer hours and put in extra effort. If you don’t, someone else will.

Also managers repeatedly asked for “someone proactive, not reactive–an employee who thinks ahead. If that employee experiences problems, he or she looks for solutions.” So to be an exemplary employee, condition yourself to be solution-focused rather than problem-focused.

What bosses want from employees may seem like a lot. In my leadership seminars and keynotes, I always tell managers and supervisors it starts at the top. Be an effective role model. Be the change you want to see.

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

An internationally recognized award-winning speaker, Colleen Kettenhofen is the author of the book, Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You, as well as 10 unique audio programs.

As a Portland, Oregon-based motivational speaker, Colleen has delivered more than 1,100 fun and entertaining programs before thousands in 48 states and five countries. She has served as keynote speaker for conferences, corporate meetings, associations, Native-American tribes, and non-profits. Colleen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars. For more information, please visit www.BounceBackHigher.com

 

Many organizations provide leadership development programs for those with a managerial title. Yet salespeople, IT personnel, engineers and others yield great influence and can offer tremendous support to a company or association, especially during times of change. It’s important to recognize that the talents of these individuals can meet the criteria for effective leadership. Even if they don’t choose to aspire to a managerial path, they can benefit tremendously from leadership development programs and training. Anyone can improve their performance, productivity, and morale when they walk away with new tools for establishing greater trust, communication and credibility. Leadership development programs will help your people become better team players, more effective communicators, and proactive problem solvers. More than that, as they develop their interpersonal skills, they will be better equipped to reach their full potential and help the organization to do that as well!

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

An internationally recognized award-winning speaker, Colleen is the author of the book Secrets Your Boss Isn’t Telling You, as well as 10 unique audio programs available at www.BounceBackHigher.com

As a motivational speaker, Colleen has delivered more than 1,100 fun and entertaining leadership development programs before thousands in 48 states and five countries. She has served as a keynote speaker for conferences, corporate meetings, associations, Native-American tribes, and non-profits. Colleen is available for speaking, coaching, and consulting by calling (623)340-7690 in Portland, Oregon.

You don’t lead by hitting people over the head–that’s assault, not leadership. ~Dwight Eisenhower

The first day a new employee arrives at your office is often mixed with excitement and uncertainty. And you both want the same result — success. But this will only happen if you use your effective leadership skills to initiate the groundwork for developing their unique talents. Starting out on the right foot will give your employee the blueprint they need to be a top contributor and you the reassurance they are following the right path.

Here are five of the most effective ways to start achieving success beginning with their first day:

Make Your Expectations Clear and Detailed

Nothing will make your employee happier than knowing where you stand. Remember, they are working at your company to help you! But in order to achieve your goals they need to know what success looks like in your eyes. During that first meeting be clear about their role in the company, what you are trying to achieve and when it all needs to be accomplished. Don’t be vague. Set clear standards from the beginning and give your employee specific examples they can follow. It will take time to put in this extra effort but you’ll be laying a solid foundation to get the results you really want. In my leadership seminars, one of the most common takeaways is managers realizing they need to set more quantifiable standards for their employees.

Provide a Way to Give and Receive Feedback

Feedback is crucial to ensure the quality of the work you receive. As you are working with your new hire tell them what works well and how they can improve. As the boss, you have the advantage of knowing when something hasn’t worked before and how to quickly resolve those issues. Also, when your employee has questions or concerns tell them how to approach you. Do you have an open door policy? Or do you prefer getting all of their questions in a single email. Determine what process works best for you and clearly communicate your preferences so they can be implemented. It’s one of the secrets to practicing effective leadership.

Managing Conflict in the Workplace

Conflicts come with every project and how you handle it will determine how smoothly things are resolved. Encourage your employees to solve smaller conflicts on their own and be supportive when they need additional leadership from you. When managing conflict in the workplace, actively listen to their concerns and urge their input for a resolution to the situation. If other people are providing the conflict, arrange for a group meeting to discuss the various issues and find common ground. Most importantly, show your employee they have your full support for resolving difficult situations and also troubleshooting any future issues. It’s one of the keys to successfully managing conflict in the workplace.

How to Appreciate and Encourage Employees

Effective leadership means not only pointing out the problems but also the successes. A thoughtful thank you goes a long way to show that you appreciate your employee’s efforts. Being specific about what you liked about their work will inspire the same results later. Additionally, acknowledge when they overcome difficult situations so they can see that you empathize with their struggles. Any opportunity you have to publicly acknowledge their success or give them a special award will also encourage others on your team to achieve similar results. Over time give employees the opportunity to lead and encourage others by becoming a group leader on future projects.

Motivating and Inspiring Employees Toward Top Results

Every employee has a special skill or ability they enjoy doing. It is usually some task they would like to do even if they weren’t  getting paid! It takes effective leadership skills to determine what these abilities are and to assign them to the right person. If you have the choice to give an accounting task to someone who likes doing math problems in their spare time, why not encourage them to crunch some numbers for you? Maybe they would like to get their degree and pursue this type of work in the future. Finding the balance between what is beneficial for your company and the future aspirations of your employee will help both of you achieve success.

Engaging these strategies will help assure the first day with your new employee will be one of many that encourage a solid working relationship that can build and develop in the future!

 

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert, Motivational Speaker

CREDENTIALS: Colleen Kettenhofen is an international workplace and employee management expert, award-winning corporate trainer, and motivational keynote speaker. A media veteran, she has appeared on numerous radio shows across the country and has written more than 40+ articles on diverse workplace issues. She has delivered more than 1,100 entertaining programs in 48 states and five countries.

She is the author of 10 published audio programs and two books including SECRETS YOUR BOSS ISN’T TELLING YOU.

Colleen can assist your organization with successful leadership development through her keynotes, seminars, and workshops. Be sure to visit www.BounceBackHigher.com for details or call (623)340-7690 in Portland, Oregon.