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May 21 15

R-E-S-P-E-C-T

by The Authors
Employee Engagement

Companies on Fortune’s most admired company list are certainly not perfect, but most of them work very hard to make respect for others a top priority. In fact, many of them cultivate profound respect for individuals as well as heartfelt accountability for demonstrating respect for others on a daily basis. The branded products and services of these companies are intended to produce superior quality and value for their customers. This in turn requires their leaders and employees to take accountability for demonstrating beliefs and values such as: (1) showing respect for all individuals, (2) combining the interests of the company and the individual, (3) focusing work strategically to maximize engagement and productivity, (4) encouraging innovation as a cornerstone of success, (5) valuing personal mastery and individual growth, and (6) embracing mutual interdependency as a way of organizational life.

How’s the respect level on your team and in your organization? Are there people on your team or inside your organization that don’t receive the respect they deserve? Are there people outside your team or organization—customers, suppliers, cross-functional teams and partners, vendors, communities, or other stakeholders—that likewise fail to receive respect from your organization? If so, why? How often? What about the people who report directly to you? Are any of them respected more than others? If so, why? Are you respected by your peers and the other leaders in your organization? When did you last feel seriously disrespected? What did you do about it?

One of the important benefits of taking accountability for respecting individuals and their individuality is an unusually high level of trust that facilitates astonishingly open and candid discussions about mistakes, learning, failures, and how to foster continuous improvement. Think about it. Do you See It—i.e., do you see the level of respect you want and need in your team and organization?

To better Own It, learn more about how to build greater accountability for respecting individuals and individuality in your team and organization. To do so, we invite you to join the Accountability Community at www.partnersinleadership.com, where you can review actual client case studies.

Sign up for one of our upcoming webinars to learn more about the results of accountability in the workplace.

See It, Own It, and Accountability Community are all registered trademarks of Partners In Leadership, Inc. All other registered trademarks and trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

 

May 15 15

Connecting the Dots to What Matters Most

by The Authors
Increase Employee Engagement

When employees don’t make a clear connection between performing their daily work and advancing the cause of the organization, they become less invested in the organization’s purpose and priorities. Eventually they become either passively or actively disengaged in their work. Reengaging them is first and foremost about helping them reconnect the dots between what they think and do everyday and what the organization needs them to think and do everyday to achieve the desired organizational results. If they can’t connect the dots, they won’t engage.

Our research shows that only 32% of people in organizations link what they do on a daily basis to their organization’s Key Results—the results that matter most to the organization in terms of crucial outcomes. Moreover, 74% percent of business leaders feel that their organization’s Key Results are not clearly understood or actively pursued throughout the organization.

To increase employee engagement, begin by clarifying the results your employees need to achieve as a team or organization. Then make your best case for why people should sign up, buy in, and invest in getting it done. In the end, employee engagement is about harnessing the power of individuals and teams within the organization to get things done. When people in organizations are actively engaged in tying what they think and do every day to the organization’s Key Results, they develop a deeper sense of personal accountability and ownership for the success of their team and organization. They also bring to bear a whole new level of creative thinking as they devise solutions that may never have occurred to them or to you. In fact, highly engaged employees go beyond the basic requirements of their jobs and often make things happen in ways that surpasses our wildest expectations.

To learn more about how Partners In Leadership’s Accountability Training and Culture Change services can help employees connect the dots between what they do everyday and what matters most to the organization, we invite you to join the Accountability Community at www.partnersinleadership.com, where you can review actual client case studies that illustrate the impact of employee engagement on organizational results.

Sign up for one of our upcoming webinars to learn more about increasing employee engagement.

Accountability Training and Accountability Community are all registered trademarks of Partners In Leadership, Inc. All other registered trademarks and trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.

May 8 15

Failing Fast and Smart

by The Authors
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According to serial entrepreneurs such as Dave McClure, founder of over 500 startups, success depends on learning how “to manufacture failure on a regular basis . . . that’s how you learn. Getting used to that, bouncing back from that, being able to figure out what people hate and turn that into what people love . . . if you’re not willing to take the risk of failing . . . you’re never going to figure out what the right path is to success.” That’s what McClure told Fast Company a few years ago, and that’s become the mantra for serial entrepreneurs everywhere. We call it “Failing Fast & Smart.”

Learning from both success and failure is an Own It best practice, but most people and organizations still struggle to get it right. First, they don’t spend enough time understanding and communicating their success. Second, they don’t see mistakes and failures as an integral part of taking the necessary risks, which is a Solve It best practice. Taking accountability for failure means recognizing that many of our most important lessons in life and work come from trial and error—and when we do take accountability for our failure, then Failing Fast and Smart becomes a distinctive competence. Jim Owens, former CEO of Caterpillar Inc., is often remembered for reminding leaders that their most important lessons come from their toughest losses.   However, this is true only if we learn from them.

Based on our experience with thousands of companies building greater accountability for achieving results, here’s what taking accountability for failure looks like to us:

See It: View the failure from every possible angle until you  understand it.
Own It: Embrace failure like Edison did when he said “I have just discovered another way that doesn’t work.”
Solve It: Continue to ask “What else can I do?” and apply the lessons you’ve learned to help you achieve the results you want.
Do It: Keep moving forward until you can make success happen.

Business failure isn’t new, but people and organizations that are faster and smarter at taking accountability for learning from failure win big in the marketplace. IDEO founder David Kelley sees failure as a necessary ingredient for success. In fact, he encourages his people to become comfortable with bad ideas. Why? He firmly believes that people will always miss good ideas unless they have the freedom to pursue bad ideas.

To learn more about taking accountability for Failing Fast & Smart, we invite you to join the Accountability Community at www.partnersinleadership.com, where you can review actual client case studies.

Sign up for one of our upcoming webinars to learn more about accountability best practices.

See It, Own It, Solve It, Do It, and Accountability Community are all registered trademarks of Partners In Leadership, Inc. All other registered trademarks and trademarks used herein are the property of their respective owners.