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By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Are You Afraid of Business Risks? Then You’re Missing Out

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There’s no shortage of managers asking their employees for new and improved work products. They shout for creativity, change, and innovation. But the unfortunate truth is that most of then don’t really mean it.

They do want great new ideas, new products and services, and clever solutions to the problems you face. They just don’t want to deal with what always comes first: trials and error, mistakes, and half-baked attempts.

All of which represent business risks — and managers just can’t stand risk.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Management Tips: The Myth of Creative Genius

The myth of creative genius at work

At some point, every leader thinks, “My team needs a little more creativity!” Then they start looking for a “creative genius” to promote or hire. This isn’t completely illogical, but it’s definitely unproductive.

In this week’s Management Tips, we’ll address the myth of creative genius—the notion that only a few lucky souls out there are truly creative and that we can benefit from this fact if we can only find them.

By Mike Figliuolo | Monday, September 15, 2014

Not ‘Just’ an Employee: Treat Your Team as Individuals

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People want to be treated like people, not like cogs in a big machine. It’s incumbent upon you as a leader to see them as individuals. It’s for that reason that I hate the use of the word “just” in front of anyone’s title.

“He’s just an analyst.”

“She’s just a cafeteria worker.”

“I’m just an administrative assistant.”

No one is just anything. The phrase is demeaning and pejorative. We’re allpeople—we simply happen to have different responsibilities.

“Just connotes that someone is worth less than someone else, as if that just” someone has a defect. One of the most powerful leadership skills I’ve seen and used is valuing everyone’s contributions equally.

By Mike Figliuolo | Monday, August 18, 2014

Attention, Leaders: Does Your Team Trust You?

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As leaders, we manage hundreds of tasks every day. But in the swirl of all that activity, one thing is often ignored until it’s too late: building trust with your team members.

Trust is key to effective working relationships—yet trust seems harder than ever to earn and easier than ever to lose.

What causes a team not to trust its leader? You. Yes, you. If you’re unpredictable, then your team doesn’t know what to expect from you.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Understanding Personality Types at Work

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Let’s be honest: We all face some interpersonal friction at work.

And sure, one reason is that some people just aren’t nice—but that’s not actually the most common reason.

When coworkers don’t get along, it’s usually not because one of them is “wrong.” It’s because people are different. Those differences are the focus of this week’s Management Tip.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Hiring for Diversity

Diversity in the Workplace

This week I’ll address diversity in the workplace from a different perspective than the one you may be used to. In the first tip, I’ll take aim at the competency model, an unexpected barrier to building diversity.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Building a better team retreat: Management Tips

Management Tips

Explore Management Tips at lynda.com.

One of the biggest potential wastes of time and money in corporate America is the team-building retreat. Retreats are rarely well planned well or correctly facilitated. The result is that teams often dread attending retreats, considering them either a waste of time or, best case, merely some “fun time” away from the office. But it doesn’t have to be this way. If handled correctly, team retreats can be productive, educational events that strengthen team bonds and encourage creativity.

My first management tip this week looks at the planning phase of a successful team retreat. It starts with being honest about what the team needs; a dose of fun is always helpful, but it should be bundled with serious, targeted learning. Is your team’s key issue trust? A lack of candor? Greater accountability? Brainstorm on the possible learning areas you could tackle, talk to your team, and choose a relevant topic.

By Todd Dewett | Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Unsticking your team: Management Tips

Unsticking your team

Get more Management Tips at lynda.com.

Keeping a team at peak performance is tough. You can staff correctly, provide your team with crystal clear directions, and give everyone the resources they need to succeed—but sometimes they’ll still get stuck! When your team’s performance reaches a plateau, you’ve got to refocus on motivating them.

You’ll know a team is stuck when you see no significant progress for weeks on its key goals, principled debate edging toward unproductive arguments, or one or two team members constantly dominating the group’s conversations. If left unaddressed, morale and trust can quickly erode and the overall productivity of your team will flatline.

Don’t worry; you can get your team moving again. That’s the focus of the first tip this week: How to get your team unstuck.

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