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How to plan and pivot when things change

These past couple of months, we’ve had to drop life as we knew it and figure out new ways to live and work. Now, restrictions are lifting around the world and the ground is shifting again. We aren’t returning to the old normal. So what’s next?

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3 steps to re-imagine productivity

A couple of weeks ago, I challenged you to think about what you aren’t missing about the way we used to live and work.

Let’s build on that. We know that organizations are starting to look at productivity and deliverables differently.

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What are you NOT missing?

I have a question I want you to spend some time mulling over. Think about it now, then let it come back to you when you make lunch, walk your dog, or wash off your patio furniture. Just see where this question takes you.

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What I know about this moment: COVID 19

OK, I tell leaders to be real with their people, so I’m going to be real with you. Last week wasn’t good.

I got stuck and felt pressure to reach out with some advice and guidance for you but I didn’t have any answers and I fell silent as I watched a packed calendar, and the life we all knew, evaporate overnight.

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The hidden link between fear and fatigue

Courage is connected to your energy reserves.

Just think about that for a second. Courage is connected to your energy reserves. Now ask yourself this. When something new shows up, what’s your first thought? A new org structure, a new software system, an invitation to cross-country ski for the first time? What’s your first reaction?

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Saying No at Work

You know you need to say no to some things. I have an idea about what might be holding you back.

Every day, people want your time, energy, money, expertise… you name it, someone wants it. And as hard as you’ve worked to build your capacity, you know you have a limit. No one has unlimited resources.

Let me ask you this: Why don’t you say no more often?

At work, if a colleague, client, subordinate or the person you report to comes to you for something, what do you do?

Do you take a beat and give yourself a chance to say no? Or do you instantly start to problem-solve?

Lots of high performers blow past their chance to say no in their rush to put out a fire. They’ll say they aren’t in a position to say no, either because of who asked, or the urgency of their work, or because they are the only person who… you fill in the blank that fits for you.

The truth is, you have the right and responsibility to say no to your colleagues, clients, subordinates, and superiors if that’s what needs to happen.

Saying no is how you protect what’s important.

C-Suite readers, this is especially critical for you because your board pays you to protect and grow the company. To do that, you need to:

  • ​protect your personal capacity
  • maintain focus on strategic issues
  • and model effective leadership.

In other words – you need to be especially comfortable saying no to people. What’s more, you can’t jump in to rescue the senior staff who aren’t able to say no. If you do, they train their managers to bail their people out. Everyone is weaker for it.

Listen, there’s no shortage of opportunities for you to say yes to people. Trust me. You’ve got mail. It’s up to you to see the opportunities to say no so that you can protect capacity for the things that matter and deliver real value.

Coming soon: Top 3 Things High Performers Need to Know About Saying No

What do you need to know about saying no to people at work?

I’m working on an article called Top 3 Things High Performers Need to Know About Saying No. And if there’s interest, I might follow it up with: How to Say No the Right Way.

When you think about what really stopped you from saying no to something or someone this week, or what you think would need to change for you to be more comfortable saying no to people, is there a shift that you think I could help you with? Drop me a line if you have an angle you’d like me to address in the article, or if you want to discuss my consulting and coaching services. Either way, I’m curious to hear what you need to know about saying no. Cheers!

Are you subscribed to my monthly newsletter? Subscribers occasionally get exclusive articles, which is what Top 3 Things High Performers Need to Know About Saying No will be. If you haven’t signed up yet, sign up now so you can get this important article.

Improve Your Performance with Sleep

Energy management is at the core of the Jump philosophy because doing something better than you are doing it now will take energy. You can’t jump higher without it.

I ask new clients to tell me precisely what they do from the minute their feet hit the floor in the morning until they go to bed at night as part of their energy audit. I’m looking for what they are doing or not doing to manage their physical, mental and emotional energy day to day. Continue reading…

Breaks Work at Work

Odds are you could be far more effective at work if you didn’t spend quite so much time working.

One tenant of energy management and workplace effectiveness is to take breaks every 90 – 120 minutes. But convincing bright motivated people to take 5 or 6 breaks in a day is no easy task.
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Managing in a Blender

Just as a complete breakfast sets you up for the day, starting your work day with a complete plan can set you and your team up to accomplish great things. Ideally, most days you start with a plan.

But when demands are at their peak, people often convince themselves to skip the plan and just dive in.

That got me thinking, what if there was a recipe – a fast and easy to remember checklist – of the leadership ingredients you fundamentally need to best serve your team; a Leadership Smoothie if you will.
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Breakfast in a Blender

How’s your day going so far? How did it start?

One of the ways I get to know my clients is by asking them to walk me through a typical day. I get them to start with their wake-up routine and we move all the way through to when they go to bed.

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Do you need a breakthrough?

Let’s do it.

Take a minute to think about the most important project on your plate. How big does it feel? How much weight does it have? How much time should you devote to it?

Now here’s the big question. What if you only had one hour to do it? That’s it. Just one hour. Gulp.

How would you prepare for the hour?  How would you prioritize it? What would you absolutely have to get done? How would you wrap up it up effectively?

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Counting Strokes

In golf, winners dole out fewer strokes than their competitors. In management, the opposite is true.

A “stroke” is a unit of human contact and recognition: a pat on the back, applause, a congratulatory note, a hug, an award, or praise. Continue reading…

BCB Commuinicator: Inspiring Action with Emotion

Chris Obst’ article Inspiring Action with Emotion, published by BCB Communicator magazine is posted here with the permission of the publisher.

In the article Chris explains how effective management comes from both the head and the heart.

BCB Communicator: Managing in Tough Times

Chris Obst’s article Managing in Tough Times, published by BCB Communicator magazine is posted here with the permission of the publisher.

In the article Chris explains how relationships, creative connections and dialogue stimulate opportunities.

BCB Communicator: Maximizing Sales Opportunities

Chris Obst’s article Maximizing Sales Opportunities, published by BCB Communicator magazine is posted here with the permission of the publisher.

In the article Chris explains how to improve sales potential by replenishing your energy.

Plan meetings that promote action

When people plan big meetings and corporate events they usually (hopefully) have an objective.

They want to motivate people toward a strategic goal. They want to team-build. They want to educate and energize people. Generally speaking, the people planning meetings want attendees to leave the event ready to DO something.

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Balanced?

Energized?

Inspired?