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Working with virtual clients and teams

The technology we have is amazing because we can use it to bridge time zones and footprints. With that in mind, here are six quick tips to help step up your efforts when connecting and engaging with remote team members or clients:

#1 Video

When you're able to see the other person and engage as close to face to face without physically being in the same room, you'll get so much more out of the communication. You'll connect better and when you do meet in person, it will feel more comfortable because of the face to face chats you've already had.

#2 Share your screen

When you've got a document or web page to review, video can help here, too. Whether you share your screen during the face to face video or record a separate video going through the document or web page, you're able to connect your message more specifically and efficiently for the recipient.

#3 Access with instant messenger or voice messenger

This is the same idea as number one, but ideally it can supplement video, not...

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3 Steps to Improve Communication

 There are so many ways we receive and send information.

Sometimes it can feel like information overload.

Like we talk “at” each other, not with.

I think we’re all guilty of that at times.

Like being on the phone, but still scrolling through the computer while you’re in the conversation.

Or allowing texts and calls that really aren’t important to interrupt a face-to-face conversation – virtual or in-person.

Or saying something without realizing that it could be received completely wrong and not because of what we said, but how we said it.

Each time distractions like that happen, they are communicating a message to the recipient. They are apparent to the other person and convey that you don’t care, no matter how much you really do.

Take a minute and think about how you’ve felt when that’s happened to you?

I know I don’t like it, and I’m guessing you don’t either.

This skill - communication - is so important...

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How to find your successful decisions

When we’ve made decisions that didn’t work out, it can start to chip away at our confidence. When that happens, you start to doubt your abilities and instincts and spend more time second guessing new decisions versus making them confidently and moving forward with clear action.

Take out a piece of paper and spend 15 minutes max to write down the times you made decisions that resulted in successful outcomes.

Write down how you felt before you made that decision and after.

Did you feel a deep knowing on the inside that this decision was right for you?

Did you feel excited because you KNEW it was right and you were so full of joy that you were proud of yourself?

Did you feel a sense of peace when making that decision? Or after? Even when the decision you made caused you to step out of your comfort zone? Or when you were saying no?

Sometimes it’s easier to see the successful decisions when you feel excited or good about them, but those decisions where you said no and...

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Habits of a Positive Leader

To be a positive, strong and influential leader, you have to develop and strengthen a leadership practice that is authentic to you. Whether you’re running your own business or leading teams or projects in the corporate world, your leadership practice is built by consistently honing your skills, gifts, and abilities.

It’s a choice you make day in and day out, regardless of title. And to honor that choice to be the leader you know you’re meant to be will require changes from you.

Such as your habits.

Those little things that we do every day, and many times, on autopilot are important to change. Yet when your habits change, you’ll see the results and they will become your new norm. So, here are five habits for you to evaluate and adjust as appropriate for where you are and where you want to go:

Number 1 - Positive leaders are continually learning

They are looking to expand their knowledge and strengthen their skills. For instance, reading or listening to a few...

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A productivity secret for #allthethings

As a small business owner or entrepreneur, there are many things that need to get done for your business to move forward. You can feel like you wear a million hats, and most days, it feels like there are five sitting on your head at once.

When you look at your project management tool or to do list, although you can see that you're making progress and cross something off, it seems like two or ten more items get added and you wonder how it will all get done.

As you look over your list, are there some items that you dread doing because you are not using your strengths, so you feel like you struggle to complete them? What happens to your other tasks and responsibilities when you are spending so much time and energy on a task that is draining you?

In order to lead your team or business, there will always be things that need to get done that you may not excel in doing. However, that does not mean that you must personally complete every item that your team or business needs to have done.

...
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How to stay on track with your goals

You’ve brainstormed and dreamed about new goals and new opportunities you want to achieve.

You’ve written them down and created a plan that you can’t wait to start.

Then slowly but surely, life starts to get in the way.

The actions you mapped out on your plan seem to be getting pushed out versus getting done. The momentum you had for making your goals happen has dwindled. Your schedule that was once one of your favorite tools has become a reminder that you are not doing everything you set out to do.

So what do you do?

It can be easy to beat ourselves up for what we haven’t gotten done or getting off track, but that won’t help. It will only add to the frustration, not make it better.

Instead, consider these seven tips to get back on track:

  1. Take some time to regroup and assess where you are
  2. Recognize what was done. Remember - you did accomplish some things, even if they weren’t all of the items you initially thought were going to happen.
  3. Identify...
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Valuing Your Experts

No matter if you're in the corporate world or running your own business, you're working with other people who have different skill sets from yours. The beauty in that is that's why you're working with them, or in some cases, hired them.

Or why someone hired you.

You bring a specific set of skills, talents, abilities, knowledge and gifts that only you could do. Just like each person you work with.

So when situations present themselves where you question what your expert says or does, remember why you hired them in the first place and seek to understand where they are coming from before jumping to any conclusions.

The saying about "knowing enough to be dangerous" is what's running through my mind because that can be a double edged sword. To know enough to be dangerous so that you can have a conversation and be wiling to say when you don't know and ask questions is great. Yet to know enough to be dangerous and not ask questions or assume you know more than you really do is setting...

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Overcoming Overwhelm

 

As you lead your business or organization, it can get noisy and overwhelm can start to creep in.

Lots of information come in from different sources, and you must decipher which ones require your attention to move your vision forward.

Sometimes it can feel like there’s so much happening.

So much information you’re receiving that it’s hard to hear that still small voice inside that’s ultimately guiding you.

Sometimes the information is more noise and not helpful or necessary.

Other times, it’s needed for your business to succeed, but even in those cases, too much data can cause overwhelm.

This doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself or at that very moment, but it does mean that you must decide if it’s important to do or not do and take action accordingly.

So how do you ignore the noise and focus on what matters?

Simply stop, get quiet and get back to basics.

By stopping and taking a moment to calm your mind and block out all the...

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Are you DILUTING your vision?

How do you know if you're diluting your vision?

he first step is to get clear on what your vision for yourself, your business or organization, your life is.

Whatever that is.

What do you want to feel, do, achieve, or be?

Where do you want your organization or business to be at the end of the year? In a year from now? In 5 years from now?

Whatever your vision is, you must stay true to it for your vision to happen

Not watering it down because it feels overwhelming.

Not downsizing or downplaying it because it’s so big it’s uncomfortable.

Not playing small because it’s easier than digging deeper to do the work necessary to move you forward to a new level of leadership and closer to your vision for your organization or business.

With that being said, here are four statements to ask yourself, and if you answer “Yes” to any of them, then you are diluting your vision.

  1. If you’re figuring out a way – intentionally or unintentionally - to water down...
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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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