Handling disagreements: 6 keys to get things back on track

The only things Mick and I disagree about is the band, the music and what we do. – Keith Richards Ha! So how is it, with all that dissent, that the Rolling Stones became one of the most popular and longest-surviving acts in rock music? Disagreements are at the heart of destruction. But good people, and apparently even Keith Richards, know the value of handling disagreements … [Read more...]

Coaching skills: 3 keys to giving good advice

It’s said that advice is a lot like Castor oil - easy to give, harder to take. And since that is so true, it means managers have their work cut out for them when it comes to giving good advice. We all admire the wisdom of those who come to us for advice (ha ha).  But that just doesn’t happen often enough. And therein lies the problem. Good managers must give sound advice on a daily basis, … [Read more...]

Grab success by the horns – in 30 seconds or less

Few skills are more important in this age of info-overload than delivering a knock-out elevator speech - on demand. You have got to have one. You have 30 seconds. Go! Summing up the unique aspects of what it is that you do - in a way that excites others - is a fundamental skill, whether you are raising funds for the local soup kitchen, speculative capital for a risky start-up, or just … [Read more...]

What are your biggest (little) workplace annoyances?

What really annoys you at work? What gets on your nerves - sometimes before it even happens - like the heat of arthritis when you sense a rainstorm coming? Oh sure, there are the classics, like BMWs; that is, bitchers, moaners and whiners. But what else? Little workplace annoyances The workplace is chock full of all manner and sizes of petty annoyances. Small annoyances are like … [Read more...]

4 generations at work: Keys to keeping the peace

Much is made of the generation gap - gaps really - and how they impact communication at work, and ultimately morale. But at the end of the day, people really are just people, right? I mean, are we making too much of it? Perhaps not, the experts tell us. Today’s workplace is more diverse than ever with differing genders, sexual orientation, nationalities, political ideologies, religious … [Read more...]

Manager’s guide to unraveling a ‘he said-she said’

It’s something every manager runs into at some point or another, the exasperating 'he said-she said.' It often crops up when there’s been some transgression of the rules. Employee A says one thing happened. Employee B says another thing – and often something very different – happened. Whom do you believe – especially during sensitive workplace investigations where your decisions may … [Read more...]

5 things managers should never say

Some phrases really should just be banned from the workplace. You know them when you hear them. They are the sorts of things that make people wonder how their boss ever got promoted in the first place. And yet, they are the kinds of things we all hear, and maybe even say, all too often. If these sound too familiar, hopefully it’s because someone ELSE is saying them. So steer clear. 5 … [Read more...]

Are you making a difference? Is anyone noticing?

Managers and shaving products have a lot in common. Specifically, safety razors. Trust me on this one. Here’s why. I read a piece recently by Steve Shapiro about how to get customers to appreciate a great product, and he used the very successful Gillette Fusion razor as an example. Shapiro says rightfully that if you can create a gap between today’s product and the past/competitor … [Read more...]

The best story to tell is the one about you

One thing that never goes out of fashion is good storytelling. In fact, it's all the rage right now. Storytelling is the next-new-big-skill-thing on LinkedIn. You know you have truly arrived as a manager if others have “endorsed” you for it. Science probably would tell us that storytelling is in our genes. It has been around since the dawn of civilization, when compelling storytelling … [Read more...]

Why only some squeaky wheels get the grease

We've all heard that squeaky wheels get the grease. But actually,  only some squeaky wheels get the grease. Others get ignored, transferred or worse -- and nobody wants to be one of those. So, if you're interested in some proven ideas to assert yourself on issues – to be a squeaky wheel-- and get the results you need, here are  seven ways to help make it happen.  One issue at a time. … [Read more...]