July 2012

I’m celebrating a major milestone this month: the second year anniversary of my business!   I’m so thrilled to be able to continue my work of helping leaders think through problems, and create clarity within complex situations to achieve great results.

Every day, I’m given the opportunity to help leaders and teams find solutions and create success!  The satisfaction I get from helping my clients succeed is hard to express in words, but it’s real. And it’s what inspires and motivates me.

Second Year Anniversary: Creating New Solutions!

As I worked with a wide range of clients in my second year, I have fine-tuned my process of Discover, Progress, Achieve – to include several new packages, new tools and new exercises all designed to meet the diverse needs of leaders and teams.  I now have specific coaching programs for leadership teams, leaders transitioning into new roles, executive leadership development, and new leader programs.

My clients in this past year are leaders in the manufacturing, technology, retail, health care, government and higher education industries.  The work we have done together has proven to be an effective solution for them in a variety of ways: 

  • Creating smooth transitions into new roles
  • Communicating  and influencing more effectively
  • Managing conflict in new ways
  • Creating clearly defined strategies and goals
  • Leading business change with greater ease
  • Learning to recognize and act on new behaviors to achieve positive results.

Throughout this second year, I have identified important themes and challenges for leaders in these tough times.   I’ll be highlighting the top leadership challenges from my client group experiences in both the July and August newsletters.   I’ve written in more detail about each of these challenges and the success my clients achieved (newsletter archive).  See if these challenges are familiar to you.

Leadership Challenges:

Balancing between managing and leading

You manage things and lead people. Right?  Way too simple? I think so. The journey from manager to leader is anything but simple, and calls for some serious self-reflection and shift in skill sets.

I find that many of my leader clients struggle to let go of “doing” the work of the team, or telling the team “how” to do the work. Many leadership promotions are still awarded to the best “doers” and “achievers”.  And there is seldom a list of ‘to do’s’ on a new leader’s plate that spells out specifically how to shape a vision and strategy, and engage a team differently than imitating a past success from a managerial role. 

Re-framing and re-defining success within the leadership role is required. And frequently it involves knowing what to let go of – especially difficult when those are typically the things that created the very success prompting the promotion to leadership.

Leading by asking good questions

The obvious benefits of asking good questions are the potentially fresh and powerful ideas that you’ll learn from your employees plus the development that will occur as your employees think and solve problems in new ways.

Another, perhaps more critical benefit of asking good questions, is to learn more about underlying issues that may be preventing the achievement of successful results. I encourage my clients to raise issues in staff meetings through questions, to allow for discussion of items not necessarily on the meeting agenda. Many times just one question can open the group to discuss the real and potentially invisible or underlying issues that are preventing the desired results.

I also caution my executive clients that the most critical part of this exercise is NOT to provide the answers or the leader’s opinion in that meeting. Let the team think about their discussion and come to the next meeting with possible solutions or first steps.

Creating responsibility and accountability

When people take accountability for results, not just doing their jobs, they take ownership for making sure nothing gets dropped.

So many companies try to solve this dilemma by re-defining responsibilities, re-designing the org charts, and re-structuring the way work is done… only to discover that changing the seats and the tasks doesn’t change how their teams think or perform the work.

The leaders I coach exhibit a great degree of personal accountability and responsibility. Their challenge is infusing that same commitment within their teams. The leaders become the ones fully responsible and accountable. It’s a default role built through many years of managing details and coming up with the solutions to everyone’s problems.

Thank you!

I’m so grateful to my wonderful clients who place their trust in me.  My second year in business has far exceeded my expectations, and I look forward to serving many more leaders in my third year.

Thank you for reading and commenting on my newsletters.  I am committed to creating a relevant and useful monthly newsletter.

Stay tuned next month for more leadership challenges!

"Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."  – Melody Beattie

With Deep Gratitude

Struggling with leadership effectiveness or business change?
If you’re looking to enhance your leadership effectiveness and would like some help to get the results you’re looking to achieve, you're in the right place. I help leaders to successfully navigate the challenges of making change to achieve the results they want. Visit my website www.terrihughes.com for details, free resources and to schedule a complimentary consultation to move you forward!



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