10 Quick Must-Have-Skills to be Career Fit

Develop Leaders2There are necessary must-have-skills that will support you in any career. They determine your ability to be promoted and ready for future career opportunities, and, they impact your side gigs and entrepreneurial interests as well. If you become too comfortable and fail to develop your skills, there is a greater risk of being sidelined in your career.

Instead of expecting your employer to help you develop these skills, take program(s) (on-line and in workshops), hire a coach and raise your hand when opportunities appear at work.

Remember, no one was born possessing these skills … it takes time and commitment to be ready when career options appear.

Career Fitness!

Regardless of your career choice(s) the following 10 skills are required to succeed in any position.

    1. Communication. Possessing and developing good verbal, non-verbal and written skills are critical. Become aware of how your choice of words, gestures and stories impact others.
    2. Decision-making. The ability to create, negotiate and follow-through on agreements is key to making good decisions with win-win outcomes. Remember, someone may forget the details, but, they won’t forget whether your attitude was helpful or hurtful.
    3. Project Management. Many studies have shown that accountability and responsibility are required to brainstorm an idea with a positive ROI, design a viable system and execute the plan to achieve intended results. Work with your coach when team conflicts, withdrawal of funds or other project stopping situations occur; otherwise, they will take the project (and your career) off course!
    4. Resiliency. The key is, when mistakes or failures happen, and they will, learn how to responsibly resolve the matter and move on. Use it as a teaching moment for you and the team…and keep moving forward.
    5. Business Basics. There will be skills that you enjoy learning and others that you won’t. It’s important to use a qualified assessment to understand “why.” This awareness helps you develop the needed mindset required to learn all of them. For example, if you don’t have an interest in financial management, becoming an accountant is not the best idea. However, it is important to learn basic accounting skills, read a P&L and develop good money practices.
    6. Sales and Customer Service. In almost any position within a company (or as a business owner), you impact the customer! Take responsibility for ensuring you’re a positive contributor in the sales cycle (e.g., prospecting, uncovering needs, presenting and winning the sale) and delivering the results.
    7. Follow-up and Follow-through. In the current survey I’m conducting, one of the most common challenges many express is the failure of people to return calls or provide promised information. Listen and deliver. Do NOT rely on your brochure or website to answer a prospective customer’s questions or current customer’s interest in learning more. This can be one of the most important skills you learn, and the reason opportunities disappear.
    8. Manage Your Time. Good habits are developed through positive practices. Return all calls. Be on time for everything. And, fulfill your promises.
    9. Bragging. Self-promotion is important today. If you’re not aware of your achievements, neither is anyone else. You will be overlooked for promotions, pay increases, and new business and other lucrative opportunities. Learn how to brag in a business savvy manner. You cannot rely on your boss, customers or business associates to do it for you!
    10. Hire, Manage and Coach. Every boss needs to learn these critical ingredients for business success … it starts with hiring the right person for the right job. Only then can you effectively manage and coach. Engaged workforces, satisfied customers and profitable performance don’t happen by accident!

If you are willing to learn and practice these 10 must-have-skills, you will succeed in your career!

©Jeannette Seibly, 2018

Jeannette Seibly has been recognized as a catalyst for the past 25 years. As an executive coach, speaker and author, she provides straight talk with dynamic results. Remember, it’s up to you to learn and perfect the necessary career skills so you can have a great career, start your own business and/or become a self-employed! Don’t wait! Step up now! Check out her website, or contact Jeannette for a preliminary confidential conversation.

Do You Roast Marshmallows When There is a Fire?

Marshmallows FireI was reminiscing with a former coaching client last week and we were laughing at the many stories we had created during the 5-year time period we had successfully worked together.

One of the most powerful stories was, he never seemed to worry about anything … when maybe he should have!

The story we created together: There could be a fire in the building and he would sit and roast marshmallows instead of running around upset or worrying about the fire. His response when this happened in his life, “I understand that maybe I should be worried … and I am concerned … but, I don’t see how running around will change anything.”

Many of us worry about things when there is a perceived “fire.” We believe we have no control over our reactions to it. And, instead of investigating the facts, taking proactive actions or appropriately waiting it out, we worry that worst things will happen.  Or, if we stick our heads in the sand, we can falsely believe everything is fine and do nothing.

While worrying does hinder your ability to achieve results, being too calm can get in the way of doing what needs to be done.

3 Ways to Minimize Worry and Improve Results

Remember, we all have times we worry about our jobs, clients, employees, family members, driving, projects, etc. When we get caught up in this vicious cycle of the bad things that may happen (and many times never happen), it diminishes our ability to make the right decisions, take the appropriate actions and move forward.

  1. Minimize disruptions and distractions. Many of these can be avoided. And, you do have a say in making this happen. Remember, when you react to newsfeeds, rings tones and gossip over coffee (to name a few triggers), you are training your brain to overreact … creating a bad habit.

Ideas:

  • *Limit your time on social media and hide negative postings.
  • *Silence your phone for a period of time, or use a different ring tone for those calls you really do need to answer.
  • *Don’t participate in the gossip mill.
  • *Seek factual information.
  • *Address the worry with your coach or mentor, then, take immediate action steps where appropriate.
  1. Practice mindfulness. Being present to what you are doing, who you are talking with and what you need to focus on is important. There are many books and podcasts available to talk you through how to become mindful. Read one chapter of a book or listen to a short podcast each day on this topic.
  1. Focus. When you have a goal you are committed to achieving (e.g., being a great boss, partner or spouse; getting the job offer; creating financial stability; etc.), do not allow circumstances to get in the way. Create a daily intention to support your goal (e.g., I am open and accepting. I believe in me. My employees are great. I am a great boss.). Work with your coach to clarify and focus on the next right actions to take. This will improve your results.

To minimize worrying and improve results, be aware and recognize when you should take different actions due to a real “fire,” or when you should sit and enjoy roasting marshmallows.

©Jeannette Seibly, 2018

Jeannette Seibly has been recognized as a catalyst for the past 25 years. As an executive coach, advisor and consultant who provides straight talk with dynamic results.  Remember, you can achieve your intended results with help from your coach, regardless of the circumstances. Don’t wait! Step up now! Check out her website, or contact Jeannette for a preliminary confidential conversation.

10 Myths about Executive Coaching You Need to Know

Key

Successful business owners, executives and leaders know that having an executive coach isn’t a luxury, it’s a necessity.

While many business professionals believe the DIY approach works, it’s a myth! The DIY process will prolong the time it takes to achieve your goals, and in the process you’ll become tired, stressed and hit the proverbial wall.

Many DIYers quit, change their goal to reflect what progress they have made, or fall victim to the allure of some shiny object. At that point,  intended results have been sidelined, dreams diminished, and the vision for success forgotten.

Uncovering myths about executive coaching allows you to see why it’s a critical component to success. Having the right coach allows you to get real about your goals, keeps you focused and reawakens your commitment to succeed.

The Top Ten Myths about Executing Coaching:

1.I can do it myself. (Unfortunately, many DIYers think they can be their own coach. Listening to yourself is a fool’s game and rarely gets you promoted.)

2.A good coach needs a certification. (Certificate programs can be helpful and provide technical skills. However, an executive coach with experience, powerful listening skills and the ability to customized ideas to your unique situation is far more powerful. That kind of experience cannot be learned from a certification program.)

3.It’s too expensive. (Not necessarily. How much are your career, time, family and financial future worth?)

4.My company won’t pay for it, so it must not be important. (There comes a time when you have to value yourself, your career, and be willing to invest in both to ensure your success.)

5.Coaching is only for people who don’t have what it takes. (Coaching is for anyone and everyone wanting to take the next step up in their career. Having a confidential sounding board helps you become aware of your blind spots. And, everyone has them!)

6.If you work harder, you will be successful. (Working smarter, not harder, means doing things in a way that is effective and efficient. The right coach will help you work smarter.)

7.I’m doing fine and don’t need a coach to prepare me for the next step. (Great! Are you ready to handle the next issue or challenge with ease and effectiveness? If you say yes, ask your employees, boss, customers and vendors if they would truly agree.)

8.I have friends and family who provide me with lots of advice. (Yes, many people do. While they mean well, most friends and family members don’t have the courage to tell you what you really need to hear. As a result, you miss out on the critical factors required to make better decisions, build stronger teams and achieve intended results.)

9.I have too much work to do and cannot take on anything else. (If this describes you, coaching should be at the top of your list. Most coaching comes just in time, when you need it most and when it can provide the greatest impact.)

10.I’ve already hit the glass ceiling and no coach can change that. (Nonsense! Anyone can become a successful leader with the right coach navigating them to success. Additionally, success today is about more than just technical and financial skills. It requires being forward-thinking, team-oriented and goal-driven…all areas where an executive coach makes a big difference.)

When you uncover the myths holding you back, you will see that hiring an executive coach is the most critical component for your success. What are you waiting for?

©Jeannette Seibly, 2018

Jeannette Seibly  has been an executive coach, business advisor and management consultant for over 25 years. Do you need a confidential sounding board, someone that can help you navigate issues and challenges effectively? Are you ready to catapult yourself toward success? Contact Jeannette for a free confidential conversation.

Do You Have What It Takes to be a Leader?

Everyone can be a leader.

The qualifying questions are:

  • Are you willing to do the work necessary and step up to be one? Or,
  • Are you waiting until someone taps you on the shoulder to begin? (Hint, it may be a long wait!)

What Does It Take?

Make a commitment. Many people say they want to achieve certain goals in their lives, yet, do not take the focused action steps necessary. For example, they wish to participate in a networking group or on a team project, but fail to show up and contribute.

  • Review your values and goals.
  • Are they consistent? For example, if you have a goal of becoming a millionaire, yet, everyday spend money for lunch, coffee and other items your actions do not support your goal.
  • Make the necessary changes one step at a time. Take one item that you are spending money on and instead invest that money.

Use qualified assessments. These tools provide incredible accuracy and insight into your leadership traits. They also provide objective awareness of how to better communicate, manage and work with others. The challenge is there’s a lot of mischief over what defines a qualified assessment. The bottom line is that a qualified assessment complies with the Department of Labor guidelines for pre-employment use. These tools have significantly higher reliability and validity, and predictive validity, than the other 3,000 tools available in the market today.

  • Select a qualified assessment and a qualified coach. (www.SeibCo.com/contact)
  • Review the results with your coach.
  • Together with your coach put together a project that will help you improve one area. (Hint: putting together a project to listen better will yield poor results. Instead, put together a customer service goal that will require you to listen in order to achieve that goal.)

Be coachable. Behind every leader is a trusted advisor/coach. (Think, Michael Jordan, Steve Jobs, etc.) Also, leaders usually have an industry mentor to help them stay current in their profession and industry. You need to have both to excel as a great leader. The right coach encourages you to do what you need to do, but don’t want to do, to achieve unprecedented results.

  • Select and hire a coach.
  • Select an industry mentor and ask him or her to be your mentor.
  • Put together a 13-week project and goal with your coach and share it with your mentor.
  • Do the work required to make it happen.
  • Blast through those barriers that normally stop you.

Take one day at a time. Every human being has personal baggage. In order to be a great leader, we need to unload it, be responsible for our perceptions of the incident, and have acceptance that the situation happened. Take the time now to get it resolved, one day at a time. It doesn’t get easier as time goes by – it gets harder. Failure to do so, may have you miss out on promotions or coveted opportunities, or, even become unemployed. If necessary, find a licensed therapist to get down to reality and better understand yourself.

Pick yourself up after a failure. Don’t berate yourself for mistakes or failures. Pretending you don’t have any, or are unable to apologize makes others uncomfortable following your leadership. Every great leader has made more than one mistake! The key is, they picked themselves up and resolved it. Now, not later when may be too late.

Everyone has what it takes to be a leader. The million dollar question is, are you willing to do the work to become one?

©Jeannette Seibly, 2016

Jeannette Seibly has been working with leaders as an international business advisor, executive coach and management consultant for over 23 years. Along the way, she guided the creation of three millionaires. Her trademark is her uncanny ability to help business professionals identify roadblocks and help them blast through those barriers to produce unprecedented results. Contact her for a free, confidential conversation on how to get the results you want: www.SeibCo.com/contact

Effective leaders influence performance

So, you want to be a leader, a future executive. (If you’re already a leader, this is a must-read to help develop your organization.)

First, here’s a little history to give you a perspective on the performance challenges many multi-generational organizations face today.

  • Millennials … require a different way of being managed and are even shaping management practices today. They prefer to be consulted, given opportunities to do their work their way and be praised for any progress they make. Learn how to influence rather than command their performance. But, be aware, they tend to have a low tolerance for the inevitable failures we all face. And, if they are unhappy, they seek jobs elsewhere.
  • Baby boomers … were brought up under the command or be fired regiment. They learned from mistakes; but, may have lost promotions because of them. Many bosses during this era earned their positions due to longevity with the company and their ability to do what they were told to do. Being happy at work wasn’t expected and job hopping wasn’t an option.

Second, regardless of the era, effective leaders influence performance by walking their talk, honoring integrity and achieving goals by working with and through others. Their expertise expresses itself quietly due to hands-on experiences, learning from their mistakes, and developing resiliency. They focus on creating a win-win workplace that respects everyone’s efforts, and do not expect preferential treatment for themselves.

Third, if you want to be a leader, take responsibility for causing your future.

  • Work-ability. Growing up, many Gen Y’ers were told they could do and be anything they wanted in business. In an ideal world, that would be true. However, we live in a world where people must do things they are not interested in doing. Be an advocate to change traditions that no longer work. For example, most companies still require their leaders to manage others (although, careers can be unnecessarily ruined when they fail). One solution is to suggest creating multiple career ladders that can leverage individual talents. http://BizSavvyHire.com
  • Communication skills beyond 140 characters. While Baby Boomers learned how to work with bosses that were erratic or unprofessional, their younger peers are not so tolerant. Stop expecting others to make communication changes required to suit you. Instead, develop the ability to effectively talk with anyone, anywhere (not just IM, text or email). It’s a must-have skill due to a diverse global market. Break through your #1 fear when having conversations! http://:ow.ly/zei8S
  • Fun work. While work can be enjoyable, there will always be parts of the job you hate. Do them anyway and learn how to systemize or make them easier. This is a hidden opportunity to show others your initiative.
  • Embrace change. It can be the game changer you’ve been striving for. Be ready to pounce in a business savvy manner when it happens.
  • Coachability. Most leaders today have a business advisor or executive coach, depending upon their entrepreneurial focus or management goals. Find an internal mentor to navigate the politics. Hire an external coach to provide a customized approach for your professional style and goals.  http://SeibCo.com/contact

 

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2014

Moving Top Performers

Did you know promoting or transferring top performers into the wrong job can be the greatest hidden expense for many companies? Other high-cost risks include relocating employees geographically or offering them the opportunity to become a business partner. What seems like a great opportunity can become one of your greatest challenges.  And yet most companies don’t take the time to incorporate objective information into their decision-making process and are surprised when the outcomes are not win-win. They fail to understand how moving top performers can negatively impact results.  

What happened? Usually the boss was focused on rewarding a top performer or employees threatened to leave if they weren’t given what they wanted.  During pre-move conversations, employees may conceptually understand their new role, but the reality can very different. Many employees rely upon their initial excitement and fail to ask enough good business questions before accepting the new assignment, and therefore don’t know what is required to succeed. After they are on the job, some may not wish to work that hard to develop the new skills required of the position (despite what they tell you), or they may lack the qualifications or “job fit” to achieve the required results.  Believe it or not, some employees find themselves being offered new jobs because they said the right thing to the right person at the right time!

What’s missing? A clear directive and navigational guide on how to do it that works for them. Instead, employees are determined to do things their own way. Then, when things don’t work out, these once stellar performers feel forced to leave rather than return to their old jobs. Their egos prevent them from taking a reduction in status, perks, and compensation, or there are no other options available since the previous position was filled or is no longer needed. So they end up leaving with all the training, proprietary information, and on-the-job knowledge you provided them – many times taking other employees with them!  Some pursue costly litigation. Meanwhile, your clients and remaining employees are concerned about how this impacts them.

As part of the decision-making process, use a qualified assessment to objectively clarify a person’s strengths and weaknesses. Contrary to some opinions, you can’t build a successful career focused on weaknesses. Don’t fall into the trap of believing you can fix and change the person to fit into the new job responsibilities —nobody works that hard. Put together a 180-day plan to keep newly promoted employees focused on critical areas for client interactions, critical goals, people and project management, and self-development while providing training to enhance these skills. Hire them a coach from outside the company— it’s a requirement to develop these superstars faster and more effectively. All of these steps can also prevent these top performers from leaving when inevitable challenges occur and no one knows how to manage them.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Jeannette Seibly delivers straight talk with immediate results to business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises, achieving dynamic results. Along the way, she helped create three millionaires. You may contact her at JLSeibly@SeibCo.com to discuss your coaching challenges.

Fear Doesn’t Stick Around Uninvited

We all have fear in our lives, some people more than others. I’m not talking about the gift of fear that warns us to do something, now, to prevent catastrophic incidents. I’m talking about the fear that prevents us from making calls to prospective clients, asking our bosses for raises or new assignments, or letting coworkers or employees know that their work product was mediocre.

Our self-talk limits us from making requests, asking for raises, or simply admitting we don’t know the answers. These internal monologues create excuses for not achieving intended results on time and within budget. They also prevent us from having difficult conversations with our bosses, coworkers, clients, or friends. We talk ourselves out of doing what we know we need to do, instead relying upon the strength of our justifications to rationalize why we couldn’t, wouldn’t, or shouldn’t.

How can you tell what is causing your fears? Listen to the words you use.  “I’ll try … ” “It shouldn’t be that way.” “I didn’t like his tone of voice.” These statements or choice of words reinforce our fears instead of allowing us to acknowledge them and work through them. Many of us have used these phrases so often we’re not consciously aware of saying them!

Take responsibility for hearing what you are saying, and choose the words that can help move you forward. Hire a coach to help you recognize fears and develop good people- and project management skills. Your career and paycheck will thank you.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Jeannette Seibly delivers straight talk with immediate results to business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises, achieving dynamic results. Along the way, she helped create three millionaires. You may contact her at JLSeibly@SeibCo.com to discuss your coaching challenges.

Be Grateful for Conflict

There are many articles written about conflict: the good, the bad and the ugly. The truth is when we fail to listen to others’ ideas and respect individual opinions, conflicts naturally occur.

Why? We have an illusion that our perceptions are the right way to think, behave or interact with one another. We are taught to speak up against someone who does not agree with us, or quietly dis them to others, negating the value of their contributions. The yeller that everyone complains about is actually no different than the silent screamer who fails to notify someone in authority of a problem.  Both cause loss of customers, low morale, poor quality of products or services and profitability. It is disrespectful toward others inside and outside the organization.

The time is now to put aside your preconceived judgments of others’ ideas and develop persuasive listening skills. Be open to hearing thoughts you would normally dismiss, learn to build upon these viewpoints and use them to create new systems, products and/or services. Often, there is a hidden gem of genius in many ideas. To determine the value, you need to develop the potential worth. Exercise facilitation skills that bring out each person’s opinions.  Listen to differing facts about the workability of internal and external factors – these can add to or hinder financial results.  In the end, whether your nugget shines, is used to create a better solution or set aside, be grateful for the “conflict” or differing mindsets that helped build a viable outcome.

©Jeannette Seibly, 2013

Jeannette Seibly is a business advisor for business owners and executives of $1MM to $30MM enterprises creating million dollar results. Contact her at JLSeibly@SeibCo.com for a free consultation on how to achieve amazing results.

When has “conflict” helped resolve a problem or open up a new product or service for your company? What did you do to facilitate it? Please share your ideas!

Are You a Moody Leader?

  • Do you thrive on drama?
  • Do people calculate your approachability before talking to you?
  • Do you gossip about your employees or clients?
  • Do others consider you untrustworthy?
  • Do you make decisions based upon your feelings at the moment?

Leaders set examples for the rest of the organization to follow. If you lack consistency in how you communicate, disrespect others in word or deed, or don’t trust others to do their best, employees respond accordingly. If you react (or over-react) before getting the facts, they may be afraid to speak up for fear of retribution. You create more of an issue.

If others are concerned about your effectiveness as a good leader, they will withhold valuable information. In these situations, often your employees’ focus is not on the organization’s goals. They are focused instead on how to work around your moodiness and still keep their jobs.

As a leader, immediate help is required to reaffirm your leadership position and move the enterprise forward. What can you do to resolve this?

Hire a business advisor. Being coachable is critical to anyone’s success, particularly top management. It can be lonely at the top; too often leaders don’t have someone else to talk with and their job can feel like a burden. Talk weekly with a business advisor. Focus on less dramatic ways to handle issues and have the benefit of consistent clarity to guide your organization forward.

Communicate effectively.  #1 concern for any leader! Be prepared to listen more than talk. Learn to ask the right questions. Be open to news you may not like, or new ideas you had not considered. Stop the internal chatterbox ; it inhibits your ability to actually hear what others are saying. When you need to deliver unpopular news or decisions, first think through what you need to say. Write it out. Read it out loud in the mirror. Keep it short, not long-winded.

Stop “should-ing.” Too often we believe people should have known or shouldn’t have said something. We forget the mistakes we’ve made ourselves over the years! A good rule of thumb: When someone does something great, let them know. When they make a mistake, take time to discuss it as soon as possible, one-on-one. When performance concerns are addressed in a consistent and respectful manner, it provides clarity about your expectations. Your employees will usually make the corrections required. If you scream at them, even once, it can damage your long term effectiveness.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2012

Effectively Manage Your Leaders’ Focus

Many companies today are moving away from the traditional skill-based job descriptions, toward performance-based job descriptions for their leaders. What’s the difference? Skill-based simply means they have the skills and knowledge to do the tasks. They may or may not use these skills to work in the direction of the Vision and Mission of the company. Performance-based is focused on the design and execution of goals and focused action plans to achieve the Company’s intended results.

When companies can clearly define performance expectations up front, both leaders within the company and the newly-hired know what is required. They can focus their efforts with a clear direction, communicate these metrics to their employees and manage accordingly. This takes the guess work out of hiring the right person and conducting effective performance appraisals.

To ensure these new descriptions are successful, you must:

Focus on the results.  Start with action verbs to ensure their role is clear. For example:Lead an initiative to upgrade financial reporting from monthly to weekly. Convert 100 customers to new product/service. Sell 30 customers product/service each month. (Fill in actual name of product or service.) Be sure to include a timeline and budget. The key is to now manage with these numbers to determine what’s working and what needs improvement on a weekly basis. This will ensure no surprises at month end (e.g., people, price point, budgets and/or systems).

Allow for innovation. New ideas are critical for growth. People create workable and sustainable systems and follow them – or not. At the end of the day, these processes must meet the demands of your customers. The leaders within your organization must be able to work with and through others to achieve the intended results, sometimes on a global basis. Use a qualified assessment to ensure clarity of the person’s interest, thinking style and core behaviors. These are critical for hiring for job fit and ongoing laser-like coaching.

Tell the truth.  In order to grow the enterprise for on-going success, it requires truth-telling today. To transform anything, you must succinctly tell the actual issues/circumstances that prevented the results previously or created the new challenges. Share appropriately. For example: when developing an IT system: company experienced 50% growth during the past twelve months, lost 25% of current customers since the system could not handle volume of orders and lack of training prevented managers from up-selling and cross-selling repeat orders.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2012