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Archive for managing people

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

“People don’t mind being challenged to do better if they know the request is coming from a caring heart.”
~ Ken Blanchard

Indira Gandhi once said, “I suppose leadership at one time meant muscles; but today it means getting along with people.” This has never been more true. Successful business leaders know although you can manage people by simply giving orders, only through caring about your employees will you take that next step in management evolution, from managing people to leading people.

As James Kouzes and Barry Posner wrote in their book, Encouraging the Heart, “All things being equal, we will work harder and more effectively for people we like. And we like them in direct proportion to how they make us feel.” Following are four ways you can help develop yourself as a caring leader, creating trust and loyalty in the process.

Evolving from Managing People to Leading People

  1. Start off on the Right Foot. At the beginning of each workday, make it a point to speak with your employees. This sounds like common sense but common sense isn’t always commonly applied! For example, compliment them on their successes early in the day, and you’ll see a more positive attitude and greater productivity throughout the workday.
  2. Recognize and Personalize Their Successes. It’s not a new concept to praise and reward your employees for a job well done; however, make sure this recognition is both public and personal. This doesn’t have to be a formal celebration, but it should give your employees a time to focus on the success of their team member. A pizza party or a cake, for reaching a small goal can really keep a team motivated and show you appreciate their hard work.
  3. Take Advantage of the Afternoon Lull. There’s a reason energy drinks use the 3 o’clock hour as an example of when people need a pick-me-up, it’s the time when many employees feel their energy and motivation drop. Take advantage of the afternoon lull, and walk around your employees, asking them how things are going. It’ll not only motivate them to keep productivity going, but will also show them you care about them.
  4. Be Friendly. Although it’s difficult sometimes to draw the line between friendship and boss-employee relationship, this doesn’t mean you can’t be friendly with your employees. Be easy to laugh with your employees. Take note of things in their personal life, such as a new addition to their family or a sick family member, and inquire when appropriate.

About Colleen Kettenhofen, Leadership Expert

CREDENTIALS: Colleen Kettenhofen is an international workplace and employee management expert, award-winning corporate trainer, and conference keynote 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 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 Kettenhofen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars by calling (623)340-7690.

7 Common Leadership Mistakes

Friday, February 15th, 2013

“Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.”

~ Albert Einstein

You’ve heard the saying – Everyone makes mistakes. Mistakes are a natural part of the learning process. However, not all mistakes are inevitable. Leaders who learn from the mistakes of others, are one step ahead of the game! Following are seven common leadership mistakes you can avoid.

  1. Being the anti-micromanger – Although micromanaging your employees can be completely counterproductive, going to the other extreme is a mistake many leaders make. Finding the balance between “hands off” leadership and micromanagement is difficult. Make sure your employees not only have direction, but also the support they need from you through the entire project or task.

  2. Lack of goal definition – Failure to clearly define goals is another common leadership mistake. Without clearly defined goals, your employees won’t know exactly what tasks they need to accomplish. With the increasing demands on employees to take on more responsibilities, this means your employees likely have a very full plate. Without specific goals, they may find it hard to prioritize and work efficiently and effectively.

  3. Providing little to no positive feedback – When your employees aren’t doing well, you let them know the areas where they need to improve, right? It’s just as important to let them know when they’re doing things right as well! Failing to compliment employees is a common leadership mistake you can easily avoid. Take time to acknowledge your employee’s hard work, not only when they go above-and-beyond, but when they do their everyday tasks as well. It’ll let them know you appreciate them and help keep them motivated.

  4. Failing to understand what motivates your employees – We may believe money makes the world go ’round, but thinking this is the end all and be all of motivating factors for your employees is a big leadership mistake! Although fairly and adequately compensating your employees is critical, there are other items that are higher up on their scale of needs. Work-life balance, career opportunities, and self-actualization are just some of the factors your employees likely value more than money.

  5. Being a friend, not a boss – This is a tricky balancing act that often leads to a common leadership mistake of being “too friendly” with your employees. Although you want to be approachable for your employees and socializing can help you form tighter bonds with your staff, you have to draw the line with your relationships. In the end, both of you need to understand that you are their boss, first and foremost, and this will mean sometimes you will have to make decisions they may not like.

  6. Succumbing to “warm body syndrome” – You have an open position you really need to fill. Candidates are applying, but they’re not exactly what you’re looking for. As the days pass, you become more desperate, and you get to the point where you feel like almost any warm body in a position is better than nothing. That’s warm body syndrome. However, this common leadership mistake has repercussions beyond simply the position you’re hiring for. A bad hire can negatively affect productivity in that position as well as the other employees who interact and rely on that position. Additionally, a bad hire can damage morale of other employees.

  7. Forgetting your a leader, not just a manager – As Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper once said, “You manage things; you lead people.” Failure to lead and relying on management is a leadership mistake you can’t afford to make. Sharing your organization’s vision, aligning your employees’ personal goals with this vision, and inspiring them to work together as a team toward both the organization’s and their personal goals, are all necessary components of leadership.

 

CREDENTIALS: Colleen Kettenhofen is an international workplace and employee management expert, award-winning corporate trainer, and conference keynote 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 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 Kettenhofen is available for keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars by calling (623)340-7690.

What if you could know what your boss is thinking? Their top concerns, worries, professional likes and dislikes? Who they want to hire, promote, or fire and why? And what if you’re a student about to enter the workforce, or already in it? As an author, award-winning speaker, and workplace expert, Colleen Kettenhofen has delivered more than 1,100 entertaining programs in 48 states and five countries. She has interviewed over 200 managers and a handful of top executives and CEOs to find out job-critical secrets about employees that bosses don’t share easily. Many revealed details of what they expect and, more importantly, don’t expect from their employees. Armed with this insight–whether you’re in the workforce, or a student, or both,–you’ll be better prepared to communicate successfully with others. Maybe you’ll receive more recognition–or even a raise!

*Please note: this demo video is simply an illustration or “audition” of Colleen’s keynotes, breakout sessions, and seminars on leadership, managing people, dealing with difficult people, and improving communication and morale.