Laser coaching requires you to stop managing

Effective bosses know that everybody has their own learning style. Instead of telling your employees how to get the job done, provide assistance that is focused on a quality process and an intentional end result. As a manager, take time to listen, ask the right questions, and use qualified assessments to become a laser-focused coach with the ability to guide your team and provide the necessary adjustments. Encourage your employees to interact with one another, other teams, and their clients to develop new processes and systems to achieve the required end results:  satisfied customers and a positive return on investment. (

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Impatience stymies the best of plans.

Many gung-ho executives and entrepreneurs have one thing in common: They can be in denial about how fast they can achieve their vision or idea. Although failure is not an option for these dynamic leaders, their impatience stymies the best of plans.  While being confident and persistent are important, so is the ability to work with and through others to make the plan a reality. Emotions, office politics, wanting to be the best at the expense of others, or being focused on a personal million-dollar payout will cloud logic, ethics, good business practices, and common sense. Impatience diminishes the effectiveness of your team! Learn how to tame your impatience and use perseverance and dedication effectively to propel your team forward.

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Avoid strategic plan nightmares.

Executing ideas that sounded great in creative sessions can turn into nightmares. Often, execution fails because of the “bright, shiny object” illusion or a failure to address the reality of current work practices.

Poorly designed goals and action plans that don’t incorporate the current systems and people or are mismatched with the company’s vision and values will fail. Jokingly threatening to fire everyone and hire the “right ones” to get the idea to work is a fool’s mission for any company. Threats like these should be seen as warning signs about the workability of any blueprint.

Create workable goals and don’t change the goal to accommodate the action plan! Learn how to work backwards to produce a focused action from the desired result—it will illuminate often-overlooked problems. These discoveries, when realistically addressed, will help you avoid strategic plan nightmares.

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Be a Leader without Being the Boss

Many times risk-adverse leaders and business professionals hate their jobs. They see the position of boss as a great opportunity to make more money and attain a coveted title.  Yet they are unable or unwilling to develop the people and project skills required to be boss. They are afraid of stepping outside their comfort zone or have done so without success. Without learning from your mistakes and developing new sets of attitudes and behaviors, it can be difficult to get and keep these positions. It would be better to develop a career ladder within your company where you can increase your influence and paycheck, and be a leader without being the boss. It’s OK if you don’t have the interests or skills to be the boss!

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

Promises are important.

Too often, we don’t pay attention to what we are saying to others, or ourselves. We make promises and don’t keep them. We forget or don’t hear our own words, get too busy or change our minds. When making promises, be conscious to what you are saying and say it in a clear and concise manner. When someone is making a request of you, agree, say no, or counteroffer. Then repeat the agreed-upon promise before fulfilling it. Write it down and take focused action.

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013 

Making promises and not keeping them.

Being a leader requires that others follow you. Making promises that you don’t keep ensures career derailment. Be clear regarding what you are promising and the deadline you are willing to abide by. Then, make it happen. This will be inspiring, since many leaders don’t honor their word!

(c)Jeannette L. Seibly, 2013

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 to discuss your coaching challenges.

Upward Mobility Requires Coachability

Do you wish to advance in your career? Be an upwardly mobile leader? Make more money? Have more responsibility? The first step is to raise your hand and get the attention of your boss (and his or her boss) by learning how to brag in a business-savvy manner (for suggestions, visit Asking and communicating your readiness and willingness will help overcome any hesitation on your boss’s part.

Once you’ve been given an opportunity, it’s important you make a full commitment to successfully completing the project, on time and within budget. New assignments require you to operate at a new level (yes, it can seem risky), being resourceful while ensuring the team has the opportunity to bring forth new ideas and daily generating your “game on” with the team when problems arise and excitement wanes. Lone rangers seldom succeed. Being responsible and accountable from start to finish is required for success. Giving up is not an option and will nix future opportunities. Communication and bragging are the keys to keep everyone on the same page (visit for ideas on how to do this).

During this time, your blind spots will become glaringly noticeable to others and can actually derail upward mobility if not addressed. Simply being aware of them will not help you transform these weaknesses into strengths—you cannot build upon weaknesses! Minimizing their impact (and avoiding the natural tendency to dominate others to avoid responsibility) requires you to be coachable and have a good coach, someone who provides straight talk. By seeing potential problems faster, you can manage them more effectively. Clarity helps you take what’s working and develop the discipline of practicing good habits—it makes it easier to handle people and system challenges. This enhanced awareness is a great starting point for the next project. It is the signature of upward mobility as a leader.

©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 to discuss your coaching challenges.

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

Delay Judging Others

In today’s fast paced world, we judge others in a nano-second. We base our verdicts on fact-less perceptions. Often, we are wrong! Successful business leaders have learned to bide their time before making irrevocable decisions about others. They know this trait can be held against them in litigation for employment-related concerns, in negotiations for contracts and special pricing and in their abilities to achieve the intended results for a project.

The following are six key points to minimize our misperception of others. The benefit? We will make better business decisions, develop stronger partnerships to grow our enterprise and enjoy positive financial impacts.

How to delay judging others:

1.     Emails. Many people don’t proof their work merely for the sake of expediency. They often forget mistakes create a long-term impression of their competence, and skip taking the extra minute or two necessary to proof their work. Review several emails to see if it’s a one-time oversight before sending them a friendly reminder.

2.     Social Media. Some people truly do not know how to use social media venues in business. “Spam” is an overused and misused phrase. Simply hide them on your newsfeed or disconnect without being offensive.

3.     First Impressions. Our internal chatterbox will focus on the person’s physical factors. It can be as simple as how they are dressed or shake your hand! If their “sound-bite” isn’t of interest, we automatically tune them out. Take time to get to know the real person before throwing away their business card. Be sure your own introduction is polished and engaging. (

4.     Network Meetings or Sales Calls. Some people create a weak impression or use an interrogative questioning style. Before discounting their credibility, set an example by sharing about yourself. Ask appropriate questions about them. It will help you make a better decision about any future connectivity.

5.     Manage your feelings. Your feelings about your employees, co-workers and clients will impact your ability to work with them effectively, even if you falsely believe you’ve kept your opinions well hidden. Learn to like someone by focusing on one or two things they do well, such as their success interacting with tough clients. Be careful of showing favoritism to those you naturally prefer. It can limit your ability to hold all your employees accountable.

6.     Don’t be afraid of the tough questions. If you’re working with a business advisor, banker or VC, they will ask hard questions. They don’t care if you like them or not! Their commitment is for your success and to provide you the clarity required to make better decisions. Learn from them! Take responsibility for asking the right questions to ensure the best welfare of your employees, clients, projects and bottom line.

©Jeannette L. Seibly, 2012