Do Leaders Value Growth in Practice or Just in Theory?

Do Leaders Value Growth in Practice or Just in Theory?

If we have learned anything since the start of the pandemic, it’s this: we live in a world that refuses to sit still. Change is the only constant. What worked yesterday must change to work today, and it will have to change again for tomorrow. In a world like that, those who adapt, survive; and those who adapt well, thrive. So as leaders, we must learn to master growth if we want to keep leading. And what’s more, we must prioritize growth if we want our people to grow - at all. Sounds like a...

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The way all great things get built

The way all great things get built

If I were to ask you if you want to be wealthier, healthier, and more skilled, what would you say? (No, this isn’t a sales pitch… well, maybe it is, in a way.) You would probably say yes. Most people would. There is a universal desire among the human race to do, be, and have more than we do. It is not necessarily a bad thing. In fact, quite the opposite. To endeavor to improve is a noble pursuit. But let’s say instead of asking you that, I asked you something else -  “Do you want to spend your...

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Are you consistent?

Are you consistent?

Before a leader can lead anyone else, they must first lead themselves. As I write this article, I am the owner and operator of my own business - Become Your Best Version (maybe you have heard of it? haha!). These last several years of entrepreneurial life have certainly shown me that self-leadership is the most important kind - and character is central to self-leadership. However, this was an idea that solidified early on in my leadership career. Long before starting my own consulting...

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Attitude – the Deal-Breaker in Leadership

Attitude – the Deal-Breaker in Leadership

If you are following my emails, that is probably because you want to grow in some way. In these notes I share different leadership insights I have picked up in study and in experience. No matter if you read these perspectives to achieve a higher level of professional results, a new title in your organization, or a greater legacy of impact, you have to do some growing - and that is my goal in sharing these insights. So today, in pursuit of growth, I want to walk you through an exercise. Take a...

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Six keys to Leadership

Six keys to Leadership

Before we jump to the six keys, let's look at what is leadership? Yes, it seems like a simple question. After all, it’s only three words. And leadership is a very common topic of discussion - we should have no trouble defining it. Yet, maybe that’s just the problem. There are so many voices out there adding volume to the conversation, it can be easy to stray from the things we know. So, what is leadership? Of all the philosophers and thought leaders expounding on leadership, one that has...

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The M-word

The M-word

Today, I want to talk to you about something that makes many people uncomfortable… something that has caused many sleepless nights, countless conflicts, and so much strife… Money. There is so much of an anxiety around this five-letter word. In the employment interview, the air gets so still and cold when the time comes to talk about compensation. Team members stress about raise requests; leaders anguish over budget line items. No one wants to talk about it. But oddly enough, money drama is...

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The assumption holding many managers back

The assumption holding many managers back

We have been talking about retention lately - one of the greatest hurdles of the modern corporate manager. You know the pain of turnover. It’s hurting your morale; it’s slowing the process down; and it’s costing you, too. In fact, voluntary turnover is costing businesses so much money, I had to double check how many zeros were in the number! (It’s twelve zeros in $1 trillion, in case you were wondering.) The pressure to solve a problem on that scale can present an intimidating challenge - but...

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Is no news good news?

Is no news good news?

They say that no news is good news… do you believe that? As leaders, our goal should be to develop our teams and build them up. We want to keep our eyes on the horizon and empower our employees to run the day-to-day themselves. The most diligent leaders make themselves dispensable. With a goal like that, it seems like the less you hear from your team, the better. BUT… to know there is really no news, we still must check. Let me explain… No doubt your tasks are often interrupted by your team....

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Leaders, it’s time to do this for your employees

Leaders, it’s time to do this for your employees

It was author, speaker, and business consultant Marcus Buckingham who said, “People leave managers, not companies.” That can be hard to hear if you are a corporate leader. It might even sting a little. Or maybe you just think to yourself, “Ah well, he doesn’t know my organization,” and wave it away. But he’s not wrong. A Gallup poll taken in 2019 uncovered some startling facts about voluntary employee turnover in the U.S. To sum it up, the poll shows turnover to be: 1) expensive, 2)...

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How to keep your top talent in-house

How to keep your top talent in-house

Many leaders live, work, and lead in fear of one word… “Retention.” It is one of the corporate world’s greatest struggles - trying to hold onto top-performing talent. “Retention” is a feared and dreaded world. It carries with it a bad connotation. It can feel less like retaining and more like detaining, like we are holding onto our people as tightly as we can. Understandably so. It can cost a business anywhere from 50% to 200% of an employee’s annual salary to replace them. And that does not...

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The quickest way to gain leadership influence

The quickest way to gain leadership influence

I have a question for you! Do you know what’s the quickest way to gain influence? Influence is the leader’s best friend. The ability to affect change or inspire action in someone else genuinely, naturally, without use of force or fabrication - influence and leadership go hand-in-hand. In fact, author and leadership expert, John Maxwell says that leadership is influence - nothing more and nothing less. The more profound your influence, the more effective your leadership. So, do you know the...

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3 Keys to Developing the Leader Within You

3 Keys to Developing the Leader Within You

Let’s say you want some nice, fresh tomatoes, so you decide to grow a tomato plant. What is your process? First, you plant the seed. And then, you leave it alone for a while, and eventually, it grows, and gives you some beautiful, ripe tomatoes. No maintenance necessary. Right? Of course not! That would be nice! But unfortunately, there is some more to it than that - you have to plant the seed where it gets enough light; water it; and then, only after great care, will you see results. Growth...

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Leaders: Can you read what your team isn’t telling you?

Leaders: Can you read what your team isn’t telling you?

You have probably heard it said that only 7% of what we communicate is in the words we say! Body language and vocal inflexion make up the vast majority of what we convey. But when you heard this, it was probably being applied to you, your leadership, and your communication. And yes - we must be mindful of what our nonverbal cues are telling those we lead. However, we can forget that this rule applies to everyone. Leading is just as much about listening as it is about teaching, coaching, or...

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Overwhelmed? Three Ways to Add More Value to Your Time

Overwhelmed? Three Ways to Add More Value to Your Time

Picture this… A team leader is carrying stacks of folders home with her. She drags a heavy wheel-bag behind her full of more folders. In her home, she eats her dinner by the computer, looking over reports until her eyes glaze over. This is just a normal Tuesday night for her! The next morning, she wakes up tired already. But as she gets dressed, she resolves to get more done today than the day before… she says, “Today, I’ll catch up.” She gets to the office, sits down, and ten minutes later,...

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“Don’t play boss with us!”​ they said

“Don’t play boss with us!”​ they said

I still hear these words loud and clear… Come on Florin - you know how things work. Don’t play boss with us! I had just asked them to prioritize a task I needed them to complete. Their response told me they did not see me as a leader. There was one big problem, though: I was literally their leader! Or at least I was on paper. I had recently been promoted to lead the team of engineers that I had used to work with. These people were my friends, and I was their friend. I had been next to them on...

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What Kind of Leader Are You? Are you better at the science or art of leadership?

Some leaders are better at the technical side of leading: strategy, planning, and finances. Others are better at the people part: connectingcommunicating, casting vision and motivating.

Which one is more like you?