Engagement Q2: Materials, Equipment, and Information

A good leader should focus on making sure everyone is being given the tools to do their job, not just expecting – poof! – that they’re going to produce great work. — Anne Sweeney, member of the Netflix board of directors, and former co-chair, Disney Media Networks and president of Disney/ABC Television Group. In my last post, I began an exploration of 12 elements of great managing that originated from research by the Gallup organization. The first of these, Q1,

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The 12 Ways of Engagement: Q1 – Setting Expectations

Employees who believe that management is concerned about them as a whole person – not just an employee – are more productive, more satisfied, more fulfilled. Satisfied employees mean satisfied customers, which leads to profitability. — Anne M. Mulcahy, former CEO and Executive Chair of Xerox Corporation An “Engaging” Journey This post begins an exploration of the work of the Gallup organization regarding the elements of employee engagement. In the late 90’s, Gallup produced a cross-industry study of over 1

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Storytelling: Six Ways to Engage

In my last post I explored the importance of storytelling as a leadership competency. Whether we lead people formally or informally, it’s critical that we connect with our inner Shakespeare — exercising our ability to tell compelling stories to engage others. Here are some scenarios for using our narrative intelligence — for telling riveting, engaging stories, raising the probability of bringing about a hoped-for outcome.   1. Job Search: why should anyone hire you? The answer may be in a story

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The Engaging Power of Storytelling

As human beings, we are naturally attracted to stories. We know that a story has the power to take us to another place, warm our hearts, influence our next steps, change our minds, and indeed set us on a path that affects our whole life. Storytelling is about being human, giving us a way to explain events and experiences, and provide building blocks for cultural understanding. The ability to tell an engaging story is an important skill for leaders, including

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Halloween: 5 Ways to Add Fun and Avoid Risk at Work

Halloween—just around the corner—is becoming more and more popular as a celebration for adults. Now a $7.4 billion holiday in the U.S., it’s one in which Americans spend about $400 million more annually on adult than on kids’ costumes.[i] Halloween began as an observance of the eve of All Saints’ Day—a time in the liturgical year for remembering the departed. Over the years, Halloween has become less known as a religious celebration and more as an opportunity for creative costuming,

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Three Keys to Resilience…….Got Bounce?

Resilience is the new skill. Even winners sometimes fumble. Bouncing back is the key.— Rosabeth Moss Kanter, HBR Blog Network, 7.17.13 Whether it’s this year’s endless arctic winter, the Olympic coverage (with its thrills of victory and agonies of defeat), my persistent head cold, or the grind-it-out run of the Syracuse University men’s basketball team, the notion of resilience has been top of mind for me lately. Anything Goes The truth is, I’ve always been interested in how people find their way through

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Leaders As Go-Givers — what’s your style: giver, matcher, or taker?

‘Tis the season for thanking and giving, and a time for refection. Lately I’ve been considering the gift of time. Have you ever been the recipient of a gift of time from someone — who also expected nothing in return? Chances are, these stand out in your mind — helpful acts that benefited you greatly along the way. In my recent transition from corporate to consulting work, I have been helped by people who were willing to connect me with others, with

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Cheers for the New York State Dispute Resolution Association (NYSDRA) Conference

I’m a board member of the New York State Dispute Resolution Association (NYSDRA), and recently participated in our annual conference. This year’s event featured sessions in social media strategies for professionals, emotional intelligence, and the power of storytelling in alternative dispute resolution. As a human resources professional, I endorse membership in NYSDRA for what it offers to HR and other professionals regarding mediation and conflict resolution strategies. In addition, NYSDRA supports the work of Community Dispute Resolution Centers (CDRCs) in the

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Ten Ways to Avoid the Slights and Snubs of Microinequities

In my last post, I explored how encouraging creativity and fun at work can enhance employee engagement and productivity. I’ve recently considered an unsettling topic related to engagement — how inadvertent slights and snubs experienced in the workplace can quash it, damage relationships, and in some cases contribute to an employee taking action against an employer. Serious stuff! These slights and snubs are known as microinequities — subtle messages of disapproval or disregard unconsciously communicated to others (Tate, January 2007).

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Productivity — What’s Fun Got to Do with It?

Making the case for fun With all of today’s concerns about maintaining employment, it could seem risky to endorse having fun at work. Who would rock the boat by campaigning for a fun work environment? Well, it turns out that there are benefits for both employers and employees when a workplace feels like fun. Many companies and organizations are creating workplace environments where lifestyle and interests are supported in the corporate culture. It’s important in recruiting and retention – millenials

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