Today we dispatched the July edition of our Leadership That Works Newsletter, a curated digest of the best leadership links to read right now, sent at the end of each month. In this month’s best leadership links: change your mind, test your vision, optimize your time, and more. As always, we’re sharing the articles from our newsletter here in case you’re not subscribed to our mailing list. If you like what you see, you can sign up to receive our newsletter here.
You Have the Power
There are “seven key stages where employees interact with their organization in a pivotal way” explains this Gallup post. When an organization gets all seven right it can lead to higher engagement and better performance. But it can seem daunting to address all seven components at once. What’s the answer? Gallup’s research shows that leaders and managers have the greatest power to improve the employee experience: “An employee’s interaction with their manager is one of the most important factors for success in all seven stages of the employee journey.” The authors explain, “If you want to radically transform your employee experience, you must first fix your manager experience,” and they provide five actionable tips for doing so here.
Go Ahead, Change Your Mind
“As learners, we all need to be open-minded and willing to consider new ideas.” says healthcare leader Don Berwick in this Institute for Healthcare Improvement Q&A. Because “curiosity and open-mindedness are key to improvement” leaders should not be ashamed of adapting their viewpoint as they learn and grow. Says Berwick, “It takes good mentoring and a lot of self-scrutiny to begin to realize that leadership of the best type shows humility and curiosity. Instead of ‘I know the answer,’ the best leaders say ‘You know the answer. How can I help you use what you know?’ Approaching the work this way is transformative.” Explore the Q&A further here.
**For more on learning and growth, explore our post on the “growth mindset.”
Mindfulness Drives Innovation
Viktor Frankl, after being imprisoned in Auschwitz, famously wrote “Between stimulus and response, there is a space . . . In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.” Mindfulness, argues this insightful Mindful article, “is, at its core, a practice of cultivating this kind of space.” How does this impact innovation? In today’s world, our brains are inundated with information constantly. “For the sake of efficiency, we tend to make new decisions based upon old frames, memories, or associations.” But a mindfulness practice fosters forward-thinking by allowing us to think of things differently; being mindful “creates space to deliberately choose” a new path forward. Learn more here.
Is Your Workplace Resilient?
“Change within the workplace is not only inevitable – it’s a constant,” writes workplace expert Natalie Baumgartner in this actionable B2C post. The organizations that thrive through change are those that have developed a “culture of resilience.” Building such a culture does not happen overnight but there is clear path towards infusing your workplace with more resilience; Baumgartner outlines the first four steps here.
** For more on bouncing back from setbacks and leading through change, explore our post on how to build leadership grit.
Optimize Your Time
For most busy leaders, the workday–and week–extends far past the typical 9-to-5 timeframe or 5-day workweek. There’s so much to do and never enough time. As a response to the needs of these time-starved but well-intentioned professionals, a cottage industry around “productivity” has sprung up offering ways to “hack” and optimize and wring every last iota of effort out of the measly 24 hours per day we’re all working with. But when it comes to productivity experts, how to separate the snake-oil salespeople from the real deal? To help, I Done This compiled this helpful list of the very best productivity coaches and experts–people who are actually worth your time and attention (both of which are at a premium). Links are included to their twitter and personal blogs when applicable. Have fun exploring the resource here.
Test Your Vision
“Leaders lose credibility when they put out a vision statement that is boring, vague, or worse, turns people off.” writes Jesse Lyn Stoner in this helpful resource on her blog. She continues,”even if you are clear about your vision, don’t assume others are as well . . . you need to test your vision” to ensure it resonates with all stakeholders and accurately captures their input and perspectives. To help, Stoner and Ken Blanchard have developed a “20/20 Vision Test” and accompanying “Scoring and Interpretation Key.” Take the assessment here to test the clarity of your vision.
**For more assessments, explore both our leadership competence and leadership character checklists.
The Icing on the Cake
This month marked the ten-year anniversary of our Founder, Doug Conant‘s, near-fatal car accident. To mark the moment, in this personal blog post, he shares what a gift the last ten years of “icing on the cake” have been: a decade of reflection, recovery, and contribution. Looking forward, Doug shares how he is more driven than ever to use ConantLeadership as an engine for helping leaders to be the best they can be. As he sets the table for the next decade, read his words here to discover what Doug has in store for the leaders of today and tomorrow.
Enjoyed these links? Check out our recent link roundups from June, May, and April.
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(Photo by Terry Vlisidis on Unsplash)