10 saker du aldrig ska göra när du säger upp en anställd

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on April 26th, 2021 by admin
Du kan göra upplevelsen mindre traumatisk för alla involverade parter

Att säga upp en anställd är stressande för alla parter – inte bara för att den anställde tappar ett jobb. Oavsett hur bra du har kommunicerat om prestationsproblem med den anställde, tror nästan ingen att de faktiskt kommer att få sparken . Detta är ofta inte utan anledning, eftersom den genomsnittliga arbetsgivaren väntar för länge med att avskeda en misslyckad anställd mycket av tiden.

Så de anställda övertygar sig själva om att de inte får sparken: de tror att du gillar dem; de tror att du vet att de är en trevlig person, eller du känner igen att de har försökt hårt. Faktum är att du kanske tror och tänker på alla dessa saker. Men ingen av dina känslor spelar någon roll när den anställde inte utför sitt jobb .

I ett teknikföretag deltog en anställd i sitt avslutningsmöte. Under månaden före hennes uppsägning hade den anställde missat elva dagars arbete. Hennes arbete hade försämrats utom reparation och hon saknade en del av varje dag som hon var planerad att arbeta så hennes produktion var hälften av vad arbetsgivaren behövde.

Trots rådgivning, muntliga varningar och skriftliga varningar sa hon att hon aldrig någonsin trodde att hennes företag skulle sparka henne. Många anställda känner på samma sätt. Och delvis uppmuntras denna tro av arbetsgivarens handlingar, eller snarare, icke-handling .

Att sparka en anställd kan ta dig ett tag – vanligtvis mycket längre än omständigheterna förtjänar. Eftersom du är snäll, omtänksam och tenderar att ge anställda en ny chans. Men det här är de 10 bästa sakerna du inte vill göra när du bestämmer dig för att avskeda en anställd .

 

Släpp inte en anställd såvida du inte möts ansikte mot ansikte

Hur du säger upp en anställd är oerhört viktigt. Släpp inte  en anställd med någon elektronisk metod – inga e-postmeddelanden, chattmeddelanden, röstmeddelanden eller telefonsamtal. Även ett brev är olämpligt när du säger upp en anställd.

När du avfärdar en anställd, ge dem den artighet som du skulle gälla för alla människor. De förtjänar ett möte ansikte mot ansikte. Inget annat fungerar.

För moralens skull är det viktigt att komma ihåg att dina andra anställda har långa minnen. Dessutom bör du anta att uppsägning inte kommer att förbli en privat fråga under denna tid av social media-dominans.

Du har skapat ett scenario där dina återstående anställda är rädda att lita på dig . Eller värre, de litar på att du också kan skada dem.

 

Handla inte utan varning

Ingenting gör en anställd argare än att känna sig blind när han sparkas. Om inte en omedelbar, allvarlig handling inträffar , ska medarbetaren uppleva coachning och prestationsåterkoppling över tiden. Innan du säger upp en anställd, försök att avgöra vad som orsakar att anställda misslyckas.

Om du bestämmer att den anställde kan förbättra sin prestation, ge den hjälp du behöver för att uppmuntra och stödja den anställde. Dokumentera varje steg  i förbättringsprocessen så att den anställde har ett register över vad som händer i varje steg. Arbetsgivaren skyddar också sina egna intressen i händelse av en rättegång över uppsägningen.

Om du är övertygad om att den anställde kan förbättra sig, och medarbetarens roll tillåter, kan en prestationsförbättringsplan (PIP) visa de anställdsspecifika mätbara förbättringskraven . (Ett PIP är svårt, om inte omöjligt, med en chef eller HR-personal när du har tappat förtroendet för deras prestationer.)

Använd dock inte ett PIP om du inte är säker på att den anställde kan förbättra sig. Den plågsamma processen att träffas varje vecka för att kartlägga inga framsteg är hemsk för medarbetaren, chefen och HR-representanten också.

Det faktiska upphörandet – medan det nästan alltid är en överraskning – borde inte komma utan varning.

 

Starta inte konversationen utan ett vittne

Särskilt i USA kan vem som helst stämma vem som helst, av vilken anledning som helst. I anställningsavslut måste arbetstagaren hitta en advokat som tror att han kan vinna ärendet och därmed ta ut sin avgift. Den bästa metoden är att inkludera en andra anställd i mötet när du säger upp en anställd.

Detta ger dig en person som hör och deltar i uppsägningen av anställningen utöver chefen . Den här personen kan också hjälpa till att plocka upp slacket om anställningschefen får slut på ord eller är osäker på vad han ska säga eller göra nästa.

Detta vittne är ofta personalpersonalen . HR-personen har mer erfarenhet än den genomsnittliga chefen när det gäller att sparka anställda, så det kan också hjälpa till att hålla diskussionen på rätt spår och gå vidare till slutförande.

HR-personen kan också se till att medarbetarna behandlas rättvist, lika och med professionalism över avdelningar och enskilda chefer. Detta begränsar ditt ansvar när du säger upp en anställd.

 

Gör inte konversationen längre än den behöver vara

Om du har coachat och dokumenterat en anställds prestationer över tiden och gett frekvent återkoppling, är det ingen mening att återupptäcka ditt missnöje när du säger upp den anställde. Det åstadkommer ingenting och är grymt.

Ändå kommer varje anställd fråga dig varför. Låt ett svar framställas som är ärligt och sammanfattar situationen på rätt sätt utan att det finns några detaljer eller att anklagas för den anställde.

Du vill att den anställde ska behålla sin värdighet under en anställningsavslutning. Så du kan säga, ”Vi har redan diskuterat dina prestationsfrågor. Vi avslutar din anställning eftersom din prestation inte uppfyller de standarder som vi förväntar oss av denna position.

“Vi önskar dig lycka till i framtiden och litar på att du kommer att hitta en position som passar dig bättre . Du har många talanger och vi är övertygade om att du kommer att hitta en position som kan dra nytta av dem.”

Eller så kan du helt enkelt påminna den anställde om att du har diskuterat frågor med honom eller henne över tiden och lämna det där.

Det är viktigt att komma ihåg att ju mer detaljerad du blir, desto mindre förmåga kommer du att använda någon av de uppgifter du upptäcker efter att anställningen avslutats i en efterföljande rättegång. Och som arbetsgivare hittar du alltid ytterligare information.

Tänk till exempel på en person som avslutats med HR-personal som hade månader av nyanställdes pappersarbete i sin låda. De anställda hade inte skrivits in i sjukvårdsförsäkring.

 

Låt dem inte tro att beslutet inte är slutgiltigt

 

Eftersom anställda inte tror att du kommer att sparka dem i första hand eller i många fall att de förtjänar att få sparken, låt inte den anställde tro att det finns en möjlighet att påverka ditt beslut.

Förhoppningsvis tänkte du länge och hårt innan du planerade avslutningsmötet. Du har dina skäl om du väljer att tillhandahålla dem, rimligt ledade och en kollega till hands för att stödja dig.

Närma dig den anställde med vänlighet, omtanke och respekt , men dina ord ska vara enkla. Wishy-washy får dig bara sorg, om den anställde tror att han har en sista chans att påverka ditt beslut.

Efter en första hälsning berättar du faktiskt arbetstagaren att syftet med mötet är att informera henne om ditt beslut att avsluta sin anställning, vilket är slutgiltigt. Detta är snällare än att vilseleda den anställde att tro att hon kan påverka resultatet.

 

Låt dem inte lämna med företagets egendom

De flesta stater och jurisdiktioner har regler om när slutliga lönecheckar måste betalas , vad som måste betalas och hur en arbetsgivare kan docka anställdas lön. Varför åka dit om företagsägda varor inte returneras?

Be den anställde lämna över sin nyckel, dörrpass, märke, smartphone, bärbar dator, surfplatta och annan företagsägd utrustning eller förnödenheter under avslutningsmötet.

Gå antingen till arbetstagarens arbetsområde eller följ medarbetaren under lunch eller en paus, om möjligt, till hans arbetsområde för att hämta resten av företagsägda föremål innan du eskorterar den anställde till hans bil.

Om, till exempel, den bärbara datorn är hemma hos den anställde (osannolikt), gör ordentliga arrangemang när du förväntar dig att den kommer tillbaka. Följ upp omedelbart om du inte tar emot utrustningen när den anställde lovade att leverera den.

 

Låt inte den tidigare anställda få tillgång till sitt arbetsområde eller sina kollegor

Många anställda blir synligt upprörda när de får sparken. Ibland gråter de. För deras värdighet – och för att inte störa dina andra anställda – gör överenskommelser med arbetstagaren för att komma in efter jobbet eller på en helg för att plocka upp sina personliga ägodelar. Du kan också erbjuda dig att skicka kontorsinnehållet till arbetstagarens hem.

Detta gör att du kan extrahera företagsdokument och material, såsom kundfiler och så vidare, och tillåter anställdas integritet när de hämtar sina ägodelar. Om medarbetaren insisterar på att plocka upp alla ägodelar omedelbart, vänta till lunch eller en paus, om möjligt, och följ alltid medarbetaren till hennes arbetsområde.

Du vill minimera kontakten som den anställde har med dina andra anställda på arbetsplatsen. Och återigen bör det vara högsta prioritet att bevara den anställdes värdighet. Så är att se till att den anställde tar bort inga företagsägda dokument eller föremål som nästa anställd behöver.

Du är ansvarig för den anställdes konfidentialitet även om den anställde gör dig illa till hela världen – vilket de ofta gör för att rädda ansiktet. Deras berättelse om sociala medier tar sällan ansvar för deras handlingar och misslyckande att uppträda.

 

Låt inte medarbetaren komma åt informationssystem

Avsluta medarbetarens tillgång till dina elektroniska system som e-post, företagets wiki, intranät, kundkontaktplatser och så vidare under anställningsavslutet eller något tidigare. Du måste samarbeta med din IT-personal för att säkerställa att åtkomstförlust uppstår.

Arbetsgivare är medvetna om många roliga, men också sorgliga berättelser, om anställda som sänder farvälsanteckningar som började med, “Jag är här borta, hej, ni suger …” Och de är också medvetna om tillfällen där en anställd saboterade datorn system i ett ögonblick efter ångest.

Arbeta med IT-personal för att se vilken företagsinformation som kan ha tagits under veckorna före ett avslut eller avslutande. Om den anställde vill skicka en adjöanteckning kan du skicka hennes lämpliga anteckning till henne till all personal.

 

Avsluta inte mötet på låg nivå

När du sparkar en anställd är syftet med mötet inte att förnedra honom eller att skada hans självkänsla. I själva verket tjänas allas bästa när arbetstagaren kan gå vidare med sitt liv så snabbt som möjligt.

Så du vill avsluta mötet på ett positivt sätt. Berätta för dem om du tillåter sparkade anställda att samla in arbetslöshet. (Ärligt talat, om inte den anställdas beteende var allvarlig, varför inte ge dem ett steg in i nästa kapitel i deras liv?)

Prata om jobbsökning och hur du kommer igång . Berätta för honom att hans bidrag värderades. Föreslå vilken typ av jobb som kan passa hennes färdigheter. Använd uppmuntrande ord som “vi är övertygade om att du hittar ett jobb som passar dig bättre .”

Du vill inte skapa en rådgivnings- eller sympatisession, men skicka medarbetaren ut genom dörren med uppmuntrande ord. (De gråter vanligtvis hur som helst, oavsett hur snälla du är – så var beredd.)

 

Släpp inte en anställd utan en checklista i handen

En checklista för uppsägning av anställning kan hålla dig organiserad och på rätt spår när du behöver säga upp en anställd. Checklistan för uppsägning av anställning säkerställer att du täcker alla lämpliga ämnen under vad som kan vara ett stressande möte för alla deltagare.

Checklistan för uppsägning av anställning ger vägledning om hur man informerar den anställde om vad hon kan förvänta sig lagligt och från ditt företag efter sin anställning .

Det fungerar också som bevis på de ämnen och utbyten som delades med den anställde under avslutningsmötet.

 

Göra det bästa av en svår situation

Att sparka en anställd är inte din mest eftertraktade upplevelse. Men du kan göra upplevelsen mer välsmakande genom att använda en effektiv, stödjande inställning till en hård konversation . De åtgärder du gör har verkligen betydelse för den anställde som får sparken och för medarbetarna som snabbt kommer att lära sig att medarbetaren är borta.

I denna era av sociala medier och elektronisk kommunikation kanske hela din personal vet inom en halvtimme – eller tidigare. Och eftersom du håller anställdas frågor konfidentiella kommer den anställde att berätta alla historier som får dem att se bra ut – även om det får dig att se dåligt ut.

Du kommer sannolikt att bli ovänliga på sociala webbplatser, så om du undrar hur den tidigare anställd placerar uppsägningen, kontrollera snabbt. Förvänta dig en tidsperiod under vilken framgångsrika anställda ser till dig för försäkran om sina egna jobb .

Source: TheBalanceCareers.com, February 2021
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Don’t forget to address these five concerns when leading change

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on April 16th, 2021 by admin

“Leading people through change requires a willingness to address the concerns people have when they are being asked to take on something different,” says Dr. Vicki Halsey, vice president of applied learning at The Ken Blanchard Companies.

“It’s also about dealing with the emotions people are going through as they experience change—emotions such as: I don’t want to do this. I don’t have time to do that. I don’t know how to do this,” says Halsey. “All of these feelings have to be addressed successfully or your change efforts will be just another bit of information bouncing off of their already full container of emotion.”

Halsey reminds leaders that organizations change when people change.

“People are walking emotions, especially now with all the micro-stressors and other things going on. And you’re saying to them, ‘Hey, we have this great change.’ And they’re like, ‘Are you kidding me? My physiology just can’t do one more thing.’”

Halsey’s recommendation? “As a leader, your job is to open up the top of their full container and let them express their emotions, by asking appropriate questions and drawing out the concerns they have.” She points to research The Ken Blanchard Companies has conducted that details how people go through five predictable stages of concern leaders can proactively plan for: InformationPersonalImplementationImpact, and Refinement.

It all starts with addressing Information Concerns, says Halsey, with answering questions such as: What is the change? Why does it need to be done? Why can’t we keep things the way they were?

“Very often, leaders launch into selling the change, forgetting that people are hearing about it for the first time. Leaders forget they have been working on this change for months and have already moved along the stages of concern personally. They forget they first had information concerns and then personal concerns. Instead, they jump right into implementation, thinking they will just share what everybody needs to do and that will be that. They think that, like them, everyone will be on board as it is such a good idea. You can probably guess how well that works—and it probably explains why 70% of change efforts are unsuccessful.”

Leaders need to take a more measured approach, says Halsey—especially in today’s overloaded world.

“We are all navigating through one of the most change-intensive work environments in most people’s memory, and here you are wanting to layer an additional change on top. You have to give people a chance to unscrew their lid and get their emotions out so that there’s room for you to put something in.

“This step helps to draw out concerns that might be derailing people from adopting the change. And by the way—it also can release some of people’s best ideas. It gives them a way to voice their concerns, voice their ideas, and voice their vision. It enrolls and energizes people by involving them in the change instead of having the change done to them.”

Halsey offers some advice to leaders at all five stages.

“At the Information Concerns stage, it’s important for a leader to close the gap between what they know and what others need to know about the change. This is where you share all of the thinking about what hasn’t been working well and why it needs to change, and a plan for where we are going as an organization.

“At the Personal Concerns stage, people are trying to figure out how this change will impact them individually. What will I gain? What will I lose? At this stage, a leader must provide a psychologically safe environment for people to get their questions answered. We are all different and have different work situations that might be upended with the proposed change. Don’t shy away from personal concerns. Let people get them out.”

When it comes to Implementation Concerns, Halsey has a favorite quote that guides her thinking.

“I love the quote ‘People who plan the battle rarely battle the plan.’ With implementation, you want to make sure you include the voices of everyone who’s being impacted by the change. Involve others to help you decide what needs to be done by when, who will be our teachers, and who are the people who have adopted the change and could be mentors to others.”

With Impact Concerns, Halsey reminds leaders to help people prioritize the change.

“When people have 63 different things competing for their attention, it’s important for leaders to keep the change effort top of mind by sharing results and success stories. When you share the impact of the adoption of the change, it’s going to motivate people to sustain the energy needed to keep working at it.

“People are always deciding in their brain, ‘Should I prioritize this or that?’ If I’m not hearing anything about the change, obviously it’s not important. But if I hear we’re reducing the time of a certain process or we’re increasing customer satisfaction scores, I know this is a priority.

“One of my clients keeps their change initiative moving along with a fun change-focused newsletter they created. They’re doing a new ERP software implementation and they’re sharing with everybody the little pockets of success—and it’s not just, ‘Woo, look at the number’—it’s a person, a peer of yours, who is using the change to great benefit. That has such a big impact. Congratulations!”

Last, Halsey identifies Refinement Concerns.  This is answering the question: How do we keep this going and how can we make this better?

“At this stage, you want to spotlight and celebrate people’s success and then help them take it up a notch. How can we refine this? This really shows how much you value your people. When people feel appreciated, they feel like they are important to the team and the organization. This is a chance to keep leveraging what you’ve learned and building a community of practice. This is about accelerating change adoption by being real about what’s working and what’s not, so that we can make everything work the way people need it to work.”

Leading Successful Change

As Halsey considers one overriding thought that would help improve change success statistics, the concept that comes to mind immediately is high involvement.

“Get everybody involved much earlier. I think high involvement change is absolutely critical right now. Give people a voice in the change. Show them that you, their leader, care enough to invite them into the process, address their concerns, and share their brilliance.

“I can’t stress enough that the people who are going to be impacted by a change should be involved in planning and implementing the change. High involvement leadership strategies will increase the odds that you will be successful with your change, because people are helping you win instead of sitting back and seeing how things turn out. It’s not your plan—it’s their plan in action.”

 

 

Source: KenBlanchard.com, April 2021
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Hur kommer distansarbetet att utvecklas framöver?

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Digitalisering / Internet, Executive Team / Ledningsgruppsarbete, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 22nd, 2021 by admin

Microsofts Vivachef: De anställdas upplevelse av distansarbete blir en ledningsfråga

Ungefär fyra av fem företag (78 procent) ser det som en utmaning att stödja distansarbetare under de närmaste två åren, enligt 451 Research. De svåraste utmaningarna är att skapa balans mellan arbete och privatliv, att förse de anställda med rätt teknik, att hålla arbetsmoralen i gruppen uppe och att kunna behålla kompetensen.

Läs mer här.

The executive’s guide to better listening

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 21st, 2021 by admin

Strong listening skills can make a critical difference in the performance of senior executives, but few are able to cultivate them. Here’s how.

A senior executive of a large consumer goods company had spotted a bold partnership opportunity in an important developing market and wanted to pull the trigger quickly to stay ahead of competitors. In meetings on the topic with the leadership team, the CEO noted that this trusted colleague was animated, adamant, and very persuasive about the move’s game-changing potential for the company. The facts behind the deal were solid.The CEO also observed something troubling, however: his colleague wasn’t listening. During conversations about the pros and cons of the deal and its strategic rationale, for example, the senior executive wasn’t open to avenues of conversation that challenged the move or entertained other possibilities. What’s more, the tenor of these conversations appeared to make some colleagues uncomfortable. The senior executive’s poor listening skills were short-circuiting what should have been a healthy strategic debate.Eventually, the CEO was able to use a combination of diplomacy, tactful private conversation, and the bureaucratic rigor of the company’s strategic-planning processes to convince the executive of the need to listen more closely to his peers and engage with them more productively about the proposal. The resulting conversations determined that the original deal was sound but that a much better one was available—a partnership in the same country. The new partnership presented slightly less risk to the company than the original deal but had an upside potential exceeding it by a factor of ten.The situation facing the CEO will be familiar to many senior executives. Listening is the front end of decision making. It’s the surest, most efficient route to informing the judgments we need to make, yet many of us have heard, at one point or other in our careers, that we could be better listeners. Indeed, many executives take listening skills for granted and focus instead on learning how to articulate and present their own views more effectively.This approach is misguided. Good listening—the active and disciplined activity of probing and challenging the information garnered from others to improve its quality and quantity—is the key to building a base of knowledge that generates fresh insights and ideas. Put more strongly, good listening, in my experience, can often mean the difference between success and failure in business ventures (and hence between a longer career and a shorter one). Listening is a valuable skill that most executives spend little time cultivating. (For more about one executive’s desire to be a better listener, see “Why I’m a listener: Amgen CEO Kevin Sharer.”)

The many great listeners I’ve encountered throughout my career as a surgeon, a corporate executive, and a business consultant have exhibited three kinds of behavior I’ll highlight in this article. By recognizing—and practicing—them, you can begin improving your own listening skills and even those of your organization.

1. Show respect

One of the best listeners I have ever observed was the chief operating officer (COO) of a large medical institution. He once told me that he couldn’t run an operation as complex as a hospital without seeking input from people at all levels of the staff—from the chief of surgery to the custodial crew. Part of what made him so effective, and so appealing as a manager, was that he let everyone around him know he believed each of them had something unique to contribute. The respect he showed them was reciprocated, and it helped fuel an environment where good ideas routinely came from throughout the institution.

The COO recognized something that many executives miss: our conversation partners often have the know-how to develop good solutions, and part of being a good listener is simply helping them to draw out critical information and put it in a new light. To harness the power of those ideas, senior executives must fight the urge to “help” more junior colleagues by providing immediate solutions. Leaders should also respect a colleague’s potential to provide insights in areas far afield from his or her job description.

Here’s an example: I recall a meeting between a group of engineers and the chief marketing officer (CMO) at a large industrial company. She was concerned about a new product introduction that had fallen flat. The engineers were puzzled as well; the company was traditionally dominated by engineers with strong product-development skills, and this group had them too. As the CMO and I discussed the technological aspects of the product with the engineers, I was struck by their passion and genuine excitement about the new device, which did appear to be unique. Although we had to stop them several times to get explanations for various technical terms, they soon conveyed the reasons for their attitude—the product seemed to be not only more efficient than comparable ones on the market but also easier to install, use, and maintain.

After a few minutes, the CMO, who had been listening intently, prompted the engineers with a respectful leading question: “But we haven’t sold as many as you thought we would in the first three months, right?”

“Well, actually, we haven’t sold any!” the team leader said. “We think this product is a game changer, but it hasn’t been selling. And we’re not sure why.”

After a pause to make sure the engineer was finished, the CMO said, “Well, you guys sure seem certain that this is a great product. And you’ve convinced the two of us pretty well. It seems that customers should be tripping over themselves to place orders. So assuming it’s not the product’s quality that’s off, what else are your customers telling you about the product?”

“We haven’t spoken to any customers,” the engineer replied.

The CMO blanched. As the conversation continued, we learned that the product had been developed under close wraps and that the engineers had assumed its virtues would speak for themselves. “But maybe not,” said the team leader. “Maybe we ought to push it a little more. I guess its good traits aren’t so obvious if you don’t know a lot about it.”

That engineer had hit the nail on the head. The device was fine. Customers were wary about switching to something untested, and they hadn’t been convinced by the specs the company’s sales team touted. As soon as the engineers began phoning their counterparts in the customers’ organizations (an idea suggested by the engineers themselves), the company started receiving orders.

Had the CMO looked at the problem by herself, she might have suspected a shortcoming with the product. But after some good listening and targeted follow-up questions, she helped to extract a much better solution from the engineers themselves. She didn’t cut the conversation short by lecturing them on good marketing techniques or belittling their approach; she listened and asked pointed questions in a respectful manner. The product ultimately ended up being a game changer for the company.

Being respectful, it’s important to note, didn’t mean that the CMO avoided asking tough questions—good listeners routinely ask them to uncover the information they need to help make better decisions. The goal is ensuring the free and open flow of information and ideas.

I was amused when John McLaughlin, the former deputy director of the US Central Intelligence Agency, told me that when he had to make tough decisions he often ended his conversations with colleagues by asking, “Is there anything left that you haven’t told me . . . because I don’t want you to leave this room and go down the hall to your buddy’s office and tell him that I just didn’t get it.” With that question, McLaughlin communicated the expectation that his colleagues should be prepared; he demanded that everything come out on the table; and he signaled genuine respect for what his colleagues had to say.

2. Keep quiet

I have developed my own variation on the 80/20 rule as it relates to listening. My guideline is that a conversation partner should be speaking 80 percent of the time, while I speak only 20 percent of the time. Moreover, I seek to make my speaking time count by spending as much of it as possible posing questions rather than trying to have my own say.

That’s easier said than done, of course—most executives are naturally inclined to speak their minds. Still, you can’t really listen if you’re too busy talking. Besides, we’ve all spent time with bad listeners who treat conversations as opportunities to broadcast their own status or ideas, or who spend more time formulating their next response than listening to their conversation partners. Indeed, bad listening habits such as these are ubiquitous (see sidebar, “A field guide to identifying bad listeners”).

I should know because I’ve fallen into these traps myself. One experience in particular made me realize how counterproductive it is to focus on your own ideas during a conversation. It was early in my career as a consultant and I was meeting with an important client whom I was eager to impress. My client was a no-nonsense, granite block of a man from the American heartland, and he scrutinized me over the top of his reading glasses before laying out the problem: “The budget for next year just doesn’t work, and we are asking our employees to make some tough changes.”

All I heard was his concern about the budget. Without missing a beat, I responded to my client and his number-two man, who was seated alongside him: “There are several ways to address your cost problem.” I immediately began reeling off what I thought were excellent suggestions for streamlining his business. My speech gained momentum as I barreled ahead with my ideas. The executive listened silently—and attentively, or so it seemed. Yet he didn’t even move, except to cock his head from time to time. When he reached for a pen, I kept up my oration but watched with some annoyance as he wrote on a small notepad, tore off the sheet of paper, and handed it to his associate. A smile flitted almost imperceptibly across that man’s face as he read the note.

I was already becoming a bit peeved that the executive had displayed no reaction to my ideas, but this little note, passed as though between two schoolboys, was too much. I stopped talking and asked what was written on the paper.

The executive nodded to his associate. “Show him.”

The man leaned across the table and handed me the note. My client had written, “What the hell is this guy talking about?”

Fortunately, I was able to see the humor in the situation and to recognize that I had been a fool. My ego had gotten in the way of listening. Had I paid closer attention and probed more deeply, I would have learned that the executive’s real concern was finding ways to keep his staff motivated while his company was shrinking. I had failed to listen and compounded the error by failing to keep quiet. Luckily for me, I was able to get a second meeting with him.

It’s not easy to stifle your impulse to speak, but with patience and practice you can learn to control the urge and improve the quality and effectiveness of your conversations by weighing in at the right time. Some people can intuitively grasp where to draw the line between input and interruption, but the rest of us have to work at it. John McLaughlin advises managers to think consciously about when to interrupt and to be as neutral and emotionless as possible when listening, always delaying the rebuttal and withholding the interruption. Still, he acknowledges that interrupting with a question can be necessary from time to time to speed up or redirect the conversation. He advises managers not to be in a hurry, though—if a matter gets to your level, he says, it is probably worth spending some of your time on it.

As you improve your ability to stay quiet, you’ll probably begin to use silence more effectively. The CEO of an industrial company, for example, used thoughtful moments of silence during a meeting with his sales team as an invitation for its junior members to speak up and talk through details of a new incentive program that the team’s leader was proposing. As the junior teammates filled in these moments with new information, the ensuing rich discussion helped the group (including the team leader) to realize that the program needed significant retooling. The CEO’s silence encouraged a more meritocratic—and ultimately superior—solution.

When we remain silent, we also improve the odds that we’ll spot nonverbal cues we might have missed otherwise. The medical institution’s COO, who was such a respectful listener, had a particular knack for this. I remember watching him in a conversation with a nurse manager, who was normally articulate but on this occasion kept doubling back and repeating herself. The COO realized from these cues that something unusual was going on. During a pause, he surprised her by asking gently, “You don’t quite agree with me on this one, do you? Why is that?” She sighed in relief and explained what had actually been bugging her.

3. Challenge assumptions

Good listeners seek to understand—and challenge—the assumptions that lie below the surface of every conversation. This point was driven home to me the summer before I went to college, when I had the opportunity to hang out with my best friend at a baseball park. He had landed a job in the clubhouse of the Rochester Red Wings, then a minor-league farm team for the Baltimore Orioles. That meant I got to observe Red Wings manager Earl Weaver, who soon thereafter was promoted to Baltimore, where he enjoyed legendary success, including 15 consecutive winning seasons, four American League championships, and one World Series victory. Weaver was considered fiery and cantankerous, but also a baseball genius. To my 18-year-old eyes, he was nothing short of terrifying—the meanest and most profane man I’d ever met.

Weaver wasn’t really a listener; he seemed more of a screamer in a perpetual state of rage. When a young player made an error, Weaver would take him aside and demand an explanation. “Why did you throw to second base when the runner was on his way to third?” He’d wait to hear the player’s reasoning for the sole purpose of savagely tearing it apart, usually in the foulest language imaginable and at the top of his lungs.

But now and then, Weaver would be brought up short; he’d hear something in the player’s explanation that made him stop and reconsider. “I’ve seen that guy take a big wide turn several times but then come back to the bag. I thought maybe if I got the ball to second really fast, we could catch him.” Weaver knew that the move the player described was the wrong one. But as ornery as he was, he apparently could absorb new information that temporarily upended his assumptions. And, in doing so, the vociferous Weaver became a listener.

Weaver called his autobiography It’s What You Learn After You Know It All That Counts. That Zen-like philosophy may clash with the Weaver people thought they knew. But the title stuck with me because it perfectly states one of the cornerstones of good listening: to get what we need from our conversations, we must be prepared to challenge long-held and cherished assumptions.

Many executives struggle as listeners because they never think to relax their assumptions and open themselves to the possibilities that can be drawn from conversations with others. As we’ve seen, entering conversations with respect for your discussion partner boosts the odds of productive dialogue. But many executives will have to undergo a deeper mind-set shift—toward an embrace of ambiguity and a quest to uncover “what we both need to get from this interaction so that we can come out smarter.” Too many good executives, even exceptional ones who are highly respectful of their colleagues, inadvertently act as if they know it all, or at least what’s most important, and subsequently remain closed to anything that undermines their beliefs.

Such tendencies are, of course, deeply rooted in human behavior. So it takes real effort for executives to become better listeners by forcing themselves to lay bare their assumptions for scrutiny and to shake up their thinking with an eye to reevaluating what they know, don’t know, and—an important point—can’t know.

Arne Duncan, the US Secretary of Education, is one such listener. He believes that his listening improves when he has strong, tough people around him who will challenge his thinking and question his reasoning. If he’s in a meeting, he makes sure that everyone speaks, and he doesn’t accept silence or complacency from anyone. Arne explained to me that as a leader, he tries to make it clear to his colleagues that they are not trying to reach a common viewpoint. The goal is common action, not common thinking, and he expects the people on his team to stand up to him whenever they disagree with his ideas.

Duncan uses a technique I find helpful in certain situations: he will deliberately alter a single fact or assumption to see how that changes his team’s approach to a problem. This technique can help senior executives of all stripes step back and refresh their thinking. In a planning session, for example, you might ask, “We’re assuming a 10 percent attrition rate in our customer base. What if that rate was 20 percent? How would our strategy change? What if it was 50 percent?” Once it’s understood that the discussion has moved into the realm of the hypothetical, where people can challenge any underlying assumptions without risk, the creative juices really begin to flow.

This technique proved useful during discussions with executives at a company that was planning to ramp up its M&A activity. The company had a lot of cash on hand and no shortage of opportunities to spend it, but its M&A capabilities appeared to have gone rusty (it had not done any deals in quite some time). During a meeting with the M&A team and the head of business development, I asked, “Listen, I know this is going to be a little bit shocking to the system, but let’s entertain the idea that your team doesn’t exist. What kind of M&A function would we build for this corporation now? What would be the skills and the strategy?”

The question shook up the team a bit initially. You have to be respectful of the emotions you can trigger with this kind of speculation. Nonetheless, the experiment started a discussion that ultimately produced notable results. They included the addition of talented new team members who could provide additional skills that the group would need as it went on to complete a set of multibillion-dollar deals over the ensuing year.


Throughout my career, I’ve observed that good listeners tend to make better decisions, based on better-informed judgments, than ordinary or poor listeners do—and hence tend to be better leaders. By showing respect to our conversation partners, remaining quiet so they can speak, and actively opening ourselves up to facts that undermine our beliefs, we can all better cultivate this valuable skill.

Source: McKinsey.com, March 2021
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3 Prerequisites for Earning the Right to Coach Others

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 3rd, 2021 by admin

If there is one ideal from the coaching world that executive coach Madeleine Blanchard believes would benefit managers and leaders in today’s organizations, it’s this: “You have to earn the right to coach others.”

“Because of their position power, managers can do certain things that coaches would never dream of doing,” says Blanchard. “For example, telling people what to do and how to do it. It is part of the job of being a manager, but it doesn’t necessarily build trust. Many managers who want to coach their people can take for granted what coaches work hard to earn.”

Blanchard shares three coaching prerequisites that will serve those striving to be great leaders who coach— first, a focus on serving others, second, self awareness, and third, self regulation. It’s a high ideal, says Blanchard—but for managers and organizations up to the challenge, the results can be spectacular.

Blanchard points to what happened at a Coca-Cola bottling plant in Europe where managers were taught how to be more coach-like.

“Coca-Cola Russia won the PRIZM award from the International Coach Federation. It’s a great example of a company that went all in on establishing a coaching culture. Using a combination of seven external coaches and forty certified internal coaches, the company trained a thousand managers in coaching skills.”

By all measures, the initiative made a huge difference in the bottom line performance of the plant and the 3,000 people working there, says Blanchard.

“Turnover was cut by two-thirds, from 78% to 26%. Employee engagement increased by over 25%. And most important, subsequent internal surveys showed that managers who had been taught coaching skills reported enhanced interpersonal relationships, increased innovation, and increased trust in management. The company’s organization value index, which measures the extent to which people report referring to and using company values to make decisions, increased by 86%.

“These types of results are critical in a world where everything is changing so fast and where employee skillsets need constant sharpening. Across all functions in an organization, a manager’s job is to encourage a growth mentality that will help people succeed, not just tell them how to do their job and save feedback for an annual performance review.”

“It all starts with a serving mindset,” says Blanchard. “Seeing leadership as serving others. That can be a daily challenge,” explains Blanchard.

“As a manager, there are going to be days where it’s like, ‘I’m not feeling particularly service oriented right now.’ So I think it requires real dedication to a higher purpose. Anyone who steps into a leadership position needs to make a conscious decision that they are there to be in service to their people, not just to manage tasks.”

That journey begins with a heightened sense of self awareness, says Blanchard.

“Self awareness is the starting point for any leadership journey. I don’t think it’s talked about nearly enough, even in professional coach training. That’s why I love a self awareness tool we use at our company that measures people’s perception of you as a leader in four critical areas—are you perceived as ablebelievablecaring, and dependable?

“Any place you fall down on this assessment points out a trouble area that’s going to impact your credibility as a leader-coach—and your effectiveness in guiding others to higher levels of performance.”

But knowing and doing are two different things. That leads Blanchard to the third prerequisite for the leader-coach—self regulation.

“After choosing to serve and self awareness, self regulation is needed for you to be the best version of yourself. It’s listening instead of telling, which means inhibiting the 99 things that pop into your head that you want to say but that won’t add value for the person being coached. It is easy to forget that listening means you aren’t talking—the person being coached should be doing most of the talking. When the person who is coaching does feel the need to give in to the urge to talk, here are the questions they first need to ask themselves:

  • Will this question spark insight for the coachee? Or is it to satisfy my own curiosity?
  • Do they really need to hear this? Do I need to say it?
  • Will what I want to say really make a difference?
  • Is it worth the time it will take to express, when time is limited?

“You have to be rigorously honest with yourself, fiercely focused on what matters most, and willing to practice extraordinary discipline. In the rough and tumble of a manager’s day, who is really signed up for that program? As it turns out, not everyone. But that is what is required, and it is not easy. Simple, yes. Easy, no.”

Blanchard adds, “If you are my manager, I have to listen to you but I don’t have to confide in you. I don’t have to do anything beyond being reasonably civil and getting the job done. That’s compliance, which is a job requirement, but it’s not the same as a commitment to a relationship that will enable my development.

“Being more coach-like as a leader means being impeccable in your own behavior or at least making the effort, which for most of us is a 24/7 uphill climb. It’s critical to developing the type of relationship that builds commitment instead of just compliance. If you want that kind of relationship—which the data shows is critical for highest performance, discretionary effort, and engagement—you’re going to have to have deeper conversations with your people about what’s important to them. That will include growth discussions, their dreams for their career, and the parts of their performance and personalities that they really need to work on to develop.

“But you need to be impeccable and trustworthy. Why would anyone reveal the parts and the places they feel they need to develop if they don’t trust you to not hold those thoughts against them?

“That’s what people are looking for in organizations today—especially in the leadership, learning, and talent development space. L&D leaders want managers to inspire and bring out the best in their team members to be better listeners and ask better questions, which are skills that can only be sharpened through self awareness, self regulation, and having a serving mindset.”

“It’s a lofty ideal, and it takes practice, but it’s worth the effort to create the types of organizations that bring out the best in people for the customers they serve.”

Source: Kenblanchard.com. 3 March 2021
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Top 10 mistakes management makes managing people

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on February 12th, 2021 by admin

It’s easy to understand why managers make significant mistakes in their daily management of the people they employ. Many managers lack fundamental training in managing people, which is usually manifest in their inability to practice the significant soft skills necessary to lead.

But, even more importantly, many managers lack the values, sensitivity, and awareness needed to interact effectively all day long with people. The best managers fundamentally value and appreciate people. They also excel at letting people know how much they are valued and appreciated.

How important is it to help your managers succeed? Beyond description. Managers and how they manage their reporting staff members set the tone for your entire business operation. Managers are the front line representation of your business.

The Importance of Managers

They are the cogs that hold your organization together because all of your employees report to them—for better or for worse. The majority of communication about the business is funneled through your managers. For your business and employees to succeed, your mid-level managers must succeed and become adept at managing in a style that empowers and enables employees.

Skills and techniques are easier to teach, but values, beliefs, and attitudes are much harder to teach—and harder for managers to learn. These are the underlying issues that will most make managers successful—or not.

But, managers do matter. So, this is why educating them and coaching them for success matters to you and your employees.

Select Managers for Managing People

In a job description for a manager, core job functions, traits, and abilities are listed. With this as a guide, manager selection should focus on both the management skills and the candidates’ cultural fit. Since they are in a position to influence a large number of your employees, you want to make sure that you get both components right.

Within the cultural fit component of your interview and selection process, a candidate for a manager position must demonstrate that he or she has beliefs, values, and a work style that are congruent with those of your organization. It includes having a commitment to empowering and enabling other employees also to contribute their best work.

In a people-oriented, forward-looking organization, you’ll want to interview and select managers who exhibit these characteristics.

  • Value people
  • Believe in two-way, frequent effective communication and listening
  • Want to create an environment in which employees are empowered to take charge of their jobs
  • Able to hold people accountable and responsible without using punitive measures
  • Demonstrate leadership and the ability to set a clear direction
  • Believe in teamwork
  • Place the customer at the center of their reason for existence and regard reporting staff as customers

With all of this in mind about managers, preventing management mistakes and dumb decisions is paramount for a successful organization. Do you want to become a better manager? Here are the managing behaviors you should most want to work towards.

Get to Know Your Employees

Developing a relationship with reporting employees is a key factor in managing. You don’t want to be your employees’ divorce counselor or therapist, but you do want to know what’s happening in their lives. When you know where the employee is going on vacation or that his kids play soccer, you are taking a healthy interest in your employees’ lives.

Knowing that the dog died, expressing sympathy, or that her daughter won a coveted award at school make you an interested, involved boss. Knowing employees will make you a better manager, a manager who is more responsive to employee needs, moods, and life cycle events.

Provide Clear Direction

Managers fail to create standards and give people clear expectations, so they know what they are supposed to do, and wonder why they fail. If you make every task a priority, people will soon believe that there are no priorities. More importantly, they will never feel as if they have accomplished a complete task or goal.

Within your clear expectations, if you are either too rigid or too flexible, your reporting employees will feel rudderless. You need to achieve an appropriate balance that allows you to lead employees and provide direction without dictating and destroying employee empowerment and employee engagement.

Trust Them From the Start

All managers should start out with all employees from a position of trust. (This shouldn’t change until the employee proves himself unworthy of that trust.) When managers don’t trust people to do their jobs, this lack of trust plays out in a number of injurious ways

Micromanaging is one example. Constantly checking up is another. Treat people as if they are untrustworthy—watch them, track them, admonish them for every slight failing—because a few people are untrustworthy. Are you familiar with the old tenet that people live up to your expectations?

Listen to Your Employees

Active listening is a critical management skill. You can train managers in listening skills, but if the manager believes that listening is a way to demonstrate that he or she values people, training is usually unnecessary.

Listening is providing recognition and demonstrating your values in action. When employees feel heard out and listened to, they feel important and respected. You will have much more information that you need when you daily open the floodgates.

When employees resign, one of the top reasons for their resignation is their relationship with their manager. People often leave managers, not jobs or employers. (They also leave for reasons such as lack of opportunity, low work flexibility, inability to achieve growth and development in their jobs, and boredom, so managers are not exclusively on the hook.)

Ask For Input Before Making Decisions

You can fool some of the people. But your best employees soon get the nature of your game and drop out. Good luck getting those employees to engage again. Along the same lines, create hierarchical permission steps and other roadblocks that teach people quickly that their ideas are subject to veto and wonder why no one has any suggestions for improvement.

Enabling people to make decisions about their work is the heart of employee empowerment and the soul of employee engagement. Don’t throttle them.

Address Problems and Issues Immediately

Managers have a habit of hoping that an uncomfortable issue, employee conflict or disagreement will go away on its own if they don’t provoke it or try to resolve it. Trust that It won’t.

Issues, especially among people, get worse unless something in the mix changes. Proactive intervention from the manager to coach and mentor, or to make sure employees have the skills necessary to resolve the issue, is imperative. Drama and hysteria do interrupt productivity, motivation, and employee engagement.

Develop Working Relationships

You can develop warm and supportive relationships with employees who report to you. But, you will have difficulty separating the reporting relationship from friendship. Friends gossip, go out together, and complain about work and the boss. There is no room for their manager in these kinds of relationships.

Communicate Effectively and Create Transparency

The best communication is transparent communication. Sure, some information is company confidential. You may have been asked to keep certain information under wraps for a while, but aside from these rare occasions, share what you know.

Being a member of the in-crowd is a goal for most employees, and the in-crowd has information—all of the information needed to make good decisions. Ask for feedback, too. Ask people for their opinions, ideas, and continuous improvement suggestions, and if you fail to implement their suggestions, let them know why, or empower them to implement their ideas themselves.

Treat Everyone Equally

You don’t necessarily have to treat every employee the same, but they must feel as if they receive equal treatment. The perception that you have pet employees or that you play favorites will undermine your efforts to manage people.

It goes hand-in-hand with why befriending reporting employees is a bad idea. Employees who are not in your inner circle will always believe that you favor the employees who are—whether you do or not. This perception destroys teamwork and undermines productivity and success.

Take Responsibility for Failures Too

Rather than taking responsibility for what goes wrong in the areas that you manage, blame particular employees when asked or confronted by senior leadership. When you know the responsibility is ultimately yours if you are the boss, why not act with dignity and protect your employees? When you blame employees, you look like an idiot, and your employees will disrespect and hate you.

Trust this. They will find out, and they will never trust you again. They’ll always be waiting for the other shoe to fall. Worst? They’ll tell all of their employee friends about what you did. Your other staff members will then distrust you, too.

Your senior managers will not respect you either. They will question whether you are capable of doing the job and leading the team. When you throw your employees under the bus, you jeopardize your career—not theirs. And, it won’t remove one iota of the blame from your shoulders.

Managers make mistakes in addition to these ten, but these are the ten that are most likely to make you a terrible manager—the type of manager that employees love to leave.

Source: Thebalancecareers.com
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How to communicate effectively in times of uncertainty

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Executive Coaching, Leadership / Ledarskap on February 2nd, 2021 by admin

These five fundamental tools can help leaders effectively communicate with their teams and carry their organizations through uncertain times with a renewed sense of purpose and trust.

During a crisis, an employee’s most trusted source of information is often their employer. For this reason, a leader’s words and actions can have a major impact on the well-being of those they manage; they can help keep people safe, help them adjust and cope emotionally and help them put their experience into context and draw meaning from it.

But crises also present leaders with infinitely complicated challenges and no easy answers. Tough trade-offs abound, and with them, tough decisions about communicating complex issues to diverse audiences.

The good news is that the fundamental tools of effective communication still work. Define and point to long-term goals, listen to and understand your stakeholders, and create openings for dialogue. Be proactive. But don’t stop there. Superior crisis communicators also do these five things well.

1. Give people what they need, when they need it. 
People’s information needs evolve in a crisis. So should a good communicator’s messaging.

In a crisis’s early stages, communicators must provide instructing information to encourage calm; how to stay safe is fundamental. As people begin to follow safety instructions, communication can shift to a focus on adjusting to change and uncertainty. Finally, as the crisis’s end comes into view, ramp up internalizing information to help people make sense of the crisis and its impact.

2. Communicate clearly, simply, frequently. 
A crisis limits people’s capacity to absorb information in the early days. Focus on keeping employees safe and healthy. To convey crucial information to employees, keep messages simple, to the point and actionable.

People tend to pay more attention to positively framed information; negative information can erode trust. Frame instructions as “dos” (best practices and benefits) rather than “don’ts” (what people shouldn’t do, or debunking myths).

Also, communicators regularly underestimate how frequently messages must be repeated and reinforced. The study, “Inverted U-shaped model: How frequent repetition affects perceived risk” published in 2015, showed that an audience needs to hear a health-risk-related message nine to 21 times to maximize its perception of that risk. Establish a steady cadence; repeat the same messages frequently; and try mantras, rhyming and alliteration to improve message “stickiness.”

3. Choose candor over charisma.
Trust is never more important than in a crisis. Those who fail to build trust quickly in crises lose their employees’ confidence.

Be honest about where things stand, differentiating clearly between what is known and unknown, and don’t minimize or speculate. Give people a behind-the-scenes view of the different options you are considering and involve stakeholders when making operational decisions.

Judiciously share your own feelings and acknowledge the personal effects of emotional turmoil. Remember that what you do matters as much as what you say in building trust, and scrutiny of leaders’ actions is magnified during a crisis.

4. Revitalize resilience.
As the health crisis metastasizes into an economic crisis, accentuate the positive by sharing stories and creating uplifting moments to reignite resilient spirits.

Additionally, strengthen communal bonds to restore confidence. Helping others is a great way to improve well-being and reduce stress. It’s also important to rebuild a common social identity and a sense of belonging based on shared values, norms and habits.

5. Distill meaning from chaos.
The crisis will end. Help people make sense of all that has happened.

Early on, be clear about what your organization will achieve during this crisis. Establish a clear vision, or mantra, for how the organization and its people will emerge. Explore ways to connect the disruption employees face to something bigger.

While it’s important to shape a story of meaning for your organization, it’s equally important to create a space where others can do the same for themselves. Ask people what conclusions they are drawing from this crisis and listen deeply.

Relying on these practices will help team members stay safe and infuse understanding and meaning in communities, helping to carry an organization through a crisis with a renewed sense of purpose and trust. For further guidance, please read “A leader’s guide: Communicating with teams, stakeholders, and communities during COVID-19.”

Source: McKinsey.com, February 2021
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About leadership …

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Leadership / Ledarskap on January 25th, 2021 by admin

“Life is like riding a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving”

Albert Einstein

 

Understanding a company’s culture

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on January 19th, 2021 by admin

Culture is defined as the values, practices, and beliefs shared by the members of a group. Company culture, therefore, is the shared values, practices and beliefs of the company’s employees.

While you cannot see or touch a culture, it is present in the actions, behaviors, and approaches of the members of an organization. From hiring practices to how people work, make decisions, resolve differences of opinions, and navigate change, the culture defines the unwritten but very real rules of behavior.

This article offers guidance on learning to sense or understand a firm’s culture. For anyone seeking a job, striving to make a sale to a new client or any manager or individual contributor endeavoring to innovate inside an organization, a firm’s culture is a powerful force that must be accounted for in your endeavor. The oft-repeated phrase, “culture eats strategy for lunch,” offers the important cautionary advice to ignore culture at your peril.

 

Ask the Right Questions

Ask someone about their firm’s culture, and you are likely to hear a series of general statements, such as:

  • We are an inclusive culture that encourages collaboration.
  • It’s an environment where everyone’s opinion is respected.
  • We are proud of our heritage and dedicated to our customers.
  • We reward initiative in our organization.

While mildly informational, those statements might apply to any number of organizations, and they don’t give you a great deal of insight into the inner workings of the organization. A better approach is to ask about or listen to the stories that are widely shared and celebrated in the firm.

 

11 Types of Questions to Help You Understand a Firm’s Culture

  1. Ask for an example of when the members of the organization came together to do something remarkable. Dig deeper and probe for examples of individuals or teams exhibiting heroic behaviors that enabled success with the big initiative. Listen carefully for group orientation or the singling out of one or more individual efforts.
  2. Ask about examples of people who succeeded wildly within the boundaries of the organization. Strive to understand what it was they did that made them rising stars in the organization. Was it their initiative and innovative thinking? Was it their ability to rally support?
  3. Look for visible signs of the culture on the walls of the firm’s facilities. Are the walls covered in stories or photos of customers and employees? Are the company’s core statements of mission, vision, and values present throughout the firm’s facilities? The absence of those artifacts says something as well.
  4. How does the firm celebrate? What does it celebrate? How frequently does it celebrate? Are there quarterly town hall meetings? Does the firm get together when new sales records or big customer orders are achieved?
  5. Is the concept of quality present in the culture? Do employees take pride in their work and the output of their firm? Are there formal quality initiatives in place, including Six Sigma or Lean?
  6. Are the firm’s executives approachable? Are there regular opportunities to interact with top executives including the CEO? Some firms use “Lunch with an executive” initiatives to offer employees time to ask questions and learn more about the direction of the firm.
  7. Is employee input sought for new initiatives including strategy?
  8. Are the leadership roles filled with individuals who have been promoted from within? Does the firm tend to hire from the outside for senior roles?
  9. How does the organization innovate? Ask for specific examples. Be certain to explore what happens when innovation initiatives fail.
  10. How are big decisions made? What’s the process? Who’s involved? Do executives encourage decision-making at lower levels of the organization?
  11. Is cross-functional collaboration encouraged? Again, ask for examples.

Individuals experienced at quickly establishing a sense of a firm’s culture use those questions and many others to understand a broad range of the attributes of an organization. They look to understand how work takes place and how employees are treated as well as how they deal with each other. From decision-making processes to the firm’s commitment to employee development and engagement, a careful questioner can learn a great deal about daily life in a firm through deft use of the questions above.

 

Cultures Do Change, Just Not Quickly

Every organization changes and evolves over time. Whether the influence to change comes naturally over time from the addition of new employees with different views and approaches or via a shock to the system from a merger or significant external event, firms do adapt and evolve.

For individuals striving to promote change within an organization, the pace of cultural evolution often seems too slow. Smart professionals understand that instead of hurrying or fighting culture when promoting change, it is essential to work within the boundaries of the culture and draw upon the strengths to achieve their objectives.

 

7 Ideas to Help Promote Change by Leveraging the Culture

  1. As a new employee take the time to study and understand your firm’s culture.
  2. If you are hired into a new organization in a senior leadership role, respect the culture and heritage of the firm, even if the firm is struggling.
  3. Connect the change initiative to the core cause, purpose and values of the firm.
  4. Identify and draw upon key influencers inside the organization for support. Instead of selling your idea to the entire organization at once, sell it to the influencers and gain their help in creating widespread support.
  5. Link your ideas or potential projects to previous successful examples that helped drive positive results for the firm.
  6. Draw upon peers in other functions to support your initiative.
  7. Respect the culture, but provide context for the need to change. Use external evidence, including competitor announcements, the emergence of new and potentially disruptive technologies or business approaches.

The Bottom Line

Many individuals and initiatives have crashed on the rocks of a firm’s culture. Instead of falling victim to the concept of: “That’s not how we do things here,” respect the culture and leverage it to promote your ideas for change. While you may not agree with some of the cultural nuances of your firm, you can only facilitate change by respecting the culture and people and gaining widespread help to produce your desired change.

 

Source: www.thebalancecareers.com/
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Distansledarskap i pandemitider: Så leder du anställda som inte vill bli styrda

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on January 14th, 2021 by admin
Svenska chefer har svårt med distansarbetet och digitalt ledarskap, visar en ny undersökning av Office Management. Ännu svårare kan det bli att leda anställda som inte vill bli ledda i hemarbetet, menar ledarskapsexperter.

I pandemitider har chefsrollen blivit extra viktigt när hemarbetet blivit vardag. Distansarbetet kan tära på den mentala hälsan då tekniken kan ha svårt att ersätta mänsklig kontakt.

Samtidigt trivs flera medarbetare med distansarbetet och upplever att man blivit allt mer produktiv, enligt en ny undersökning av Office Management där 500 chefer och 500 anställda blivit tillfrågade om hur de upplever distansarbetet.

Chefer i undersökningen pekar däremot på att möjligheten att leda sina anställda på ett bra sätt har försvunnit. Och ännu svårare kan det bli att leda anställda som redan innan pandemin inte velat bli styrda, menar ledarskapsexperten Lena Lid Falkman.

DN har ställt frågan till tre ledarskapsexperter om hur man som ledare kan förbättra sitt ledarskap digitalt och hur man agerar när anställda inte vill bli styrda.

– Hemarbete kräver självledarskap. Jag som ledare ska inte kontrollera exakt när du jobbar och på vad du gör, utan fokusera på att det blir rätt resultat i slutändan, säger Lena Lid Falkman.

– Är det så att folk inte levererar behöver man strukturera upp arbetet som ledare och sätta tydliga mål. Håll kortare avstämningar ofta, och följ upp med frågor som ”hur går det nu?”. Kontrollera inte din personal genom att fråga ”vad har du gjort i dag?”.

– Viktigt är även att fira dessa delmål.

Leif Andersson erbjuder ledarskapsrådgivning för verksamheter och enskilda individer i Sverige. När folk säger att de inte vill bli styrda så ligger det ofta en orsak bakom, menar han.

– När någon säger till mig att ”den här personen vill inte bli ledd” så säger undrar jag varför har man fått för sig dig det? Det kanske handlar om att personen inte gör som den blivit tillsagd. Ibland är chefer för snabba på att bestämma vad folk ska göra.

– I stället för att komma med en lösning till medarbetaren upplever jag att det är bättre att ställa frågan om hur uppgiften eller problemet ska lösas så att man gör medarbetaren delaktig.

Samtidigt innebär distansarbetet nya utmaningar, förklarar han.

– Tidigare har det varit lättare att vara en dålig chef, för anställda går till jobbet på grund av sina kollegor även om de har en dålig chef. När arbetet nu sker på distans blir det ännu viktigare från chefens sida att få anställda att känna sig uppskattade.

Ledarskapsexperten Malin Trossing upplever att det i grund och botten alltid handlar om att man måste förstå varför anställda inte vill bli ledda. Och om tydlighet för att komma till bukt med problemet.

– Lösningen är olika beroende på anledningen. Det kan vara så att vissa människor behöver större frihet, eller att man själv tycker att firman inte har koll.

– Man kanske har en anställd som underpresterar, eller så har man olika sätt att kommunicera på som gör att ledarskapet blir otydligt och att man som chef upplever att ”de inte vill bli ledda”, säger hon.

– När vi kommunicerar är det bara tio procent i ord och 90 procent i kroppsspråk, tonläge och röst. Om vi ses fysiskt i ett möte så vet vi att det ändå är lätt att missförstå varandra. Digitalt kan man i princip säga att alla de 90 procenten försvinner i ett knackigt videosamtal där du kanske ser någon frimärkesstorlek. Cirka tio procent når fram så det gäller att vara dubbel så tydligt som i den fysiska verkligheten.