Advice on Handling Difficult Conversations

It’s another start of the work week, and you think things are going great….until… things aren’t.

You get a voice mail or face to face encounter from a customer, vendor, or co-worker that is most unpleasant. This unhappy camper is frustrated and rather than focusing on the problem or situation at hand, it feels like an attack on you.

In the moment, it can be very difficult not to take the conversation personally. It can also be challenging to turn the conversation around to something more productive, but if you are able to, it will be well worth it.

So when you are in the heat of the moment, try these three tips to help you constructively and productively move the conversation forward.

Tip 1 - View the concern as a way to improve

Tip 2 - Consider the person said something because they care

Tip 3 - Apply the Three Cs

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Learning and Leading

So let's talk about continual learning, and specifically when you've invested money or time or both to advance or strengthen your skills as a leader. 

Perhaps it's a small investment relatively speaking like reading or listening to a book. Maybe it's a course or seminar you attended, or training your company has sent you to for the day.  Or perhaps it's working with a coach or consultant. And even it didn't cost you money, it was your time spent there, including the time spent creating the space to go and getting caught up again (or close to it) once you returned.

When you first went through the course, the seminar, or even worked with your coach, you probably took some notes as a way to help you process what you're learning. Once the course, seminar or coaching sessions are finished, you have every intention of fully implementing what you've learned.

Then more time passes, and although you know you learned a lot, you might feel like you should have learned more or that...

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Why CONFIDENCE is so Important to Leadership

To show up as the confident business leader you're meant to be, you need to share your strengths and stay true to your vision and values and that's where confidence kicks in.

The more confidence you have, the more you will:

    • Know what your strengths are and be willing to put yourself out there and share them over and over again
    • Push yourself to desire a big vision and realize you're fully capable of making it happen and with confidence you declare it as yours
    • Trust you can turn that vision into reality by creating an actionable and achievable plan to get there
    • Make decisions that need to be made and execute them, especially difficult ones, without second guessing
    • Know and trust what to say yes to and what to intentionally say no to
    • Communicate effectively what the vision is and work with others to help them know what it is, why it's important and how they fit, so that they are able to buy into the vision because they're buying into you
    • Develop and grow your group from high...
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How to Receive Feedback - Part 2

Let's set the groundwork for this two part series with a definition of feedback, which is information about reactions to a product, a person’s performance of a task, which is used as a basis for improvement.

Part 1 - Detach from the Outcome

Part 2 - Your Filter and Decisions

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Upleveling as a Leader

It seems that we go through various cycles in our life of mastering something and then starting over as the student.

When we start a new job, even if it's with the same company or group of people, or transition from the corporate world and into our own business, there are new responsibilities, processes, and systems for us to learn.

Each time we try something new, we are breaking out of our comfort zones.

Sometimes it's not a matter of trying something new, but rather breaking a system that made sense at one time and now no longer serves us.

At that point, we have a choice – we can choose to view change as positive growth instead of negative or scary.

We can choose to stay where we are or to rise to the next level and allow ourselves to be the student once more. It’s easy to stay where we are because it’s comfortable and known.

Because moving to the next level requires more from us.

So, what can you do to better prepare for the next level?

The first step is to...

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Are You Thinking Big Enough?

Today’s chat was inspired by one of my all time favorite books – The Magic of Thinking Big by Dr. David J. Schwartz.

So my parents gave me this copy when I was in high school, and I’ve re-read it many many times since. It’s about a growth mindset. Having a mindset that says I can figure it out or I am more than capable.

If you haven’t read this book, I hope you’ll check it out, but in the mean time – are you thinking big enough?

Meaning – are you brainstorming and whole heartedly pursuing goals that are exciting, audacious, meaningful and scary at the same time?

Do they push you out of your comfort zone?

Another way to think big is to day dream. What would just be amazing for you if it happened?

Don’t just keep these ideas in your head – write them down.

Take out a piece of paper and for 15 minutes, just brain dump everything that comes to your mind of what would be amazing to accomplish, do, have, or experience.

It...

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Evaluating and Elevating Your Habits

You know I love quotes.

Sometimes they are little bursts of inspiration or motivation, and sometimes they are gentle reminders to take action to change.

When I first saw this quote by Therese Fowler: 

“Some rules are nothing but old habits that people are afraid to change”

two different paths came to mind – one was external and the other was internal.

Let’s take the external one first.

For your business to grow, systems and guidelines are essential. They create the opportunity to streamline work, increase productivity, set clear expectations, and map processes so that everyone involved is on the same sheet of music. These can easily become habits for the business or organization. Habits because it’s what is known and expected, even if they don’t make sense anymore.

What was helpful at one time may be outdated now, but unless it’s revisited and reexamined, it will continue to do what it’s always done.

To make sure your business...

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Point of View and Leadership

When you think of point of view or POV as it relates to a book, it’s the perspective of the character and how the story is told. Are you coming from the main character’s vantage point or more of an observer and not knowing what’s happening with their inner thoughts?

Same can be said for leadership and driving your overall vision forward.

Just take a moment and think about where you are in your organization or business….. are you in the weeds? Are you really heavily in the details? Or are you at the 10,000 or 100,000 foot view?

Changing your point of view can help you see progress from a different perspective.

It can help you determine what changes are needed.

Each vantage point gives you a different perspective, and each one helps you to change your point of view.

When you run into a challenge, do you typically view them as a problem or opportunities to do something different?

Sometimes shifting your point of view makes it easier or even quicker to find a...

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What's a Joylist and Do You Have One?

 

Self-care is a vital part of being a successful leader because in order for you to give your best to your business, organization, or team, you have to take care of yourself.

As a leader, it's so important to refill your own cup, yet it can be one of the last things we remember to do.

There are many ways to make yourself a priority, but one easy way take care of yourself is to experience things that bring you joy.

When you get that warmth inside or a feeling that you could do something for hours and it feels like a few minutes, your enthusiasm comes through. Your joy shines through!

So instead of a life bucket list, what’s on your joylist?

What are things that bring you joy on a daily basis?

Things that make you smile.

That light you up.

Do you take time to enjoy them?

For me, getting extra cuddles from my kitties and spending quality time with my hubby are at the top. Tasting a great piece of chocolate, feeling the warmth of the sun on my skin, spending time at the...

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Bar of Excellence

 

As a leader, you set the bar of excellence for your business and organization.

If you have a mindset that is about continually learning, improving and growing, then you are more than likely looking at your habits and making decisions of what to continue or change. If you are a bit fearful of change, which we all can be at times, there might be some habits that are allowing fear to have more of a voice than it should. When that happens, try shifting your perspective on change – it’s neither good or bad, it just IS.

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