Be Honest – What’s Holding You Back? – Better! Results Tip #9

Career Goals

 Coaching client Katie expressed her frustration with great passion and clarity. “I just can’t get the traction I need to move my career forward at the speed I want. Or any speed most days!”

Bang! She nailed it! So while she was in this charged-up state, we immediately invested 15 minutes in a simple exercise you or I can easily do on our own. We made a list of specific factors Katie believed were holding her back in her career.

Here are ten items from Katie’s list. She rattled these off in this order in less than three minutes!

  1. A tendency to stall; to procrastinate rather than to take even simple first steps.
  2. A difficult boss – who has a consistent habit of refusing to coach his subordinates in any area of their skills.
  3. Time, or rather the apparent lack of it.
  4. Inexperience and fear of speaking in front of others.
  5. Feeling tired and worn down from the pace of daily commuting in traffic, deadlines, other staff who don’t pull their own weight, excessive email volume, and dozens of daily interruptions by others that break her concentration.
  6. Lack of access to difficulty building rapport with those higher up in the organization.
  7. A business environment where collaboration is outwardly discouraged.
  8. Too many ‘bends’ in even the most simple of processes – a bend being any step, approval, document or other administrative hurdle that slows the process down for no apparent benefit.
  9. Constant low priority busy work – draining limited energy away from getting important things done.
  10. Unclear performance criteria.

CareerI acknowledge that the creation of a list doesn’t solve anything. Far from it. But rather than a foggy feeling of general frustration, it gives us clear baseline to work from. From your list, you can take the next steps of identifying the factors you have control over and lay out a plan of action. You can also focus in on factors you can’t control, and devise a plan to work around, over, under or with these barriers.

The first step of any improvement plan is the gift of quiet time to assess where we are right now, what specific factors around us move us forward and which ones get in our way. From that analysis, a plan comes next.

Be honest – what’s holding you back? Give yourself the gift of 15 minutes of quiet time to develop your list. Decide right now which factors you can address and the ones you have to tolerate at least for the short run. Write it out in a bullet point list. It it’s not written, it’s not a plan. Then act on the issues you can influence. Simple steps every day add up to measurable results.

No one else is responsible for your progress except you. Like Katie, take complete control of your future. Right now – make a list, build a plan, and start taking action.

 

John J. Hall, CPA


John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events. Throughout his 38-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

how to establish influence at a new job

How to Establish Influence at a New Job

So you’ve got a new job. Congrats! But now you face the challenge of adapting to your new workplace and building your reputation and influence within the organization. This can be a pretty daunting task to even the most seasoned supervisors and employees, but it’s important that you dive right in and start carving out your role and reputation without delay.

As you concentrate on mastering the tasks required during the first few weeks of your new position, it’s important that you also gain an understanding of how the organization works as whole and determine the cultural dynamics of the workforce. This will help you gain momentum quickly as you work to build legitimate influence and provide measurable value in your new position.

Here are some tips for doing just that:

1. Become the go-to person for whatever you do

When you introduce yourself to other people within your new organization, you should establish yourself as an authority in your position and offer to be of assistance. When you make the introduction, explain what your role and responsibilities are and why others should come to you when they need assistance with something in your realm of expertise. Once you’ve build yourself up as an authority in one particular area, people will start establish influence at a new jobseeking you out for assistance even in areas outside of your job description. The goal is to be in demand because of how good you are at whatever you do.

2. Make friends in high places

Seek out people who are well respected in your new organization This person could be your direct superior, a project manager or others who are well respected regardless of their position or length of service. Arrange time to chat, and let them know that you’d love to have their advice as you acclimate to your new position. Having an influential person in a mentorship or coaching role will help you to build your skills and influence. Start with your new boss; it’s always a good idea to find ways to help them meet or exceed their goals.

3. Really listen to coworkers

Get to know your coworkers and their goals, challenges, and responsibilities. Find ways to help them be successful. Go out of your way to help them when they need assistance. You can only build influence if you have the admiration and respect of the people that you work with. But remember: this isn’t about building paybacks due to you; it’s about being seen as an invaluable resource.

4. Invest constantly in your most important product – YOU

Work each day on improving your skills in these critical areas.

  • Core business, administrative and time management skills
  • Technical skills required of your current position and desired future positions
  • Interpersonal and communications skills

All three areas are critical to your success. Study, practice, ask for help, and improve every day. Let others will see how dedicated you are to mastering your number one product – YOU!

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”

bad boss

The Biggest Signs that You are a Bad Boss

Oh boy. This is a subject that people never really want to talk about, but if you can’t pinpoint where the problems lie in your business that prevent it from really flourishing, it might be time to analyze yourself.

When you’re the boss in any organization, you’re almost never going to have universal popularity. However, there are some characteristics that you can avoid that should help you avoid being a bad boss.

Here are some of the most common traits that may indicate you’re a bad boss:

  • People are afraid to give you their opinions. You need to be able to have constant lines of communication open with all of your employees. If people are afraid to talk to you, that may very well be because they bad bossare scared of your response, or that you have a reputation for being less than willing to have these discussions.
  • You tend to micromanage. You shouldn’t have to constantly be on your employees’ case to ensure they achieve results. When you feel like you constantly need to be a whip cracker, this may mean that you’ve hired the wrong people or you haven’t properly motivated them, or both. In any case, it’s your fault.
  • You are out of touch. The best managers have their finger on the pulse of their business at all times. You should know what’s going on in all areas of your organization. If you don’t know what’s happening inside, how can you convince other people outside that you’re a great organization?
  • You try too hard to be liked at the expense of respect. You’re just about never going to have universal popularity. It’s great if people love you and enjoy working with you, but it’s more important that you are respected as a leader. You need to be able to build the trust of your employees and deliver tough messages when they need to be heard. It can’t always be sunshine and roses.
  • You throw your employees under the bus. When things go wrong, you can’t avoid taking responsibility. As the boss, you need to take the blame when things go wrong, even when it’s not completely your fault. You also need to pass the credit when things go well. Throwing your team members under the bus will only serve to make them despise you.

Fortunately, all of these behaviors are fixable. If you find that you are guilty of any of these characteristics, it’s never too late to make a conscious effort to change your ways. Your business will be far better because of it.

John J. Hall, CPA

John J. Hall, CPA

 

 

 

 

 

 

John J. Hall, CPA, is an author, speaker and results expert who presents around the world at conventions, corporate meetings and association events.

Throughout his 35-year career as a business consultant, corporate executive and professional speaker, John has helped organizations and individuals achieve measurable results. He inspires audience members in corporations, not-for-profit organizations and professional associations to step up, take action and “do what you can.”