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Our Perspective on Life, Leadership, and Engagement

Get the scoop from our consultants and creatives, as well as our clients and other thought-leading guests. In addition to our blog and video posts, don’t miss our popular podcasts — they’ve been heard regularly by thousands of leaders since 2012!
  • On the Engaging Leader podcast, we share communication and leadership principles, and tell stories that illustrate putting those principles into practice.
  • The Workforce Health Engagement podcast explores strategies to improve your employees’ health and productivity — and to protect your bottom line.

191: 3 Hacks for Emotional Transparency That Cultivates Accountability | with Jonathan Raymond

If it seems like you can’t trust your team to own projects and results, how can you improve accountability?

This is the final episode in a four-part series of interviews with Jonathan Raymond about how to practice emotional transparency to cultivate accountability within your team. This time, we discuss three hacks — the most important things to remember — when practicing emotional transparency to cultivates accountability in the workplace.

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My Team was Right. I was Wrong. Why I’m Happy About It.

As leaders, we have to trust that our judgment and experience will successfully guide our teams and organizations forward. It’s equally important to know when to give up control and test the instincts of your team, even if you would do things differently.

My team was troubleshooting lack of engagement in a program. They threw out an idea and I’ll admit, I wasn’t really on board. After a couple of weeks, their approach hadn’t gained momentum and I suggested a different solution. But they were committed to giving their idea a fair shot. I acquiesced. Fast forward two months and their idea is working! People outside our group have complimented the approach and engagement in the program has improved.

My team was right. I was wrong. This is why I’m happy about it…

  1. I’m happy that I work with an energetic team that’s willing to put in extra work to try new things even when my support wavers.
  2. I’m happy that I work with a team that has the patience and stick-to-it-iveness to see an idea through until it succeeds.
  3. I’m happy that I work with a team that is confident in their own judgment and experience. And that they feel comfortable going to bat for good ideas even if I don’t initially see their vision.

Being a good leader means also being a good team member and collaborator. It’s important to give others opportunities to test ideas and manage projects. That’s the best way to help the people on your team grow into effective leaders themselves.

Jamie Barnes is a consulting partner with Workforce Communication. With a focus on change management communications, her approach is rooted in proven practices. She has worked in global firms and creative agencies, and she studied behavior change with behavioral scientist BJ Fogg PhD, the neuroscience of learning with the NeuroLeadership Institute, and change management with Prosci. Jamie studied organizational communications at the University of Chicago and has a BA in social science from National Louis University.

Thanks for reading! Feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn and follow our team at Workforce Communication.

How to Inspire Your Team When You’re Feeling Burned Out Too

I can see clearly now, the rain is gone.

Last month on a team call, I noticed that my typically upbeat and productive colleagues were a bit sluggish and uninspired for the second month in a row. We hadn’t achieved a couple of the goals and tasks we’d set for ourselves. What is usually a lively 90 minutes discussing ideas and setting plans into action, felt like an achy slog.

As the team leader, I felt responsible for energizing the group and getting us back on track. But I was feeling the same funk as my team… like a soggy moss crept over my creative and constructive leader brain. How can I rally my team when I’m feeling burned out myself?

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190: 4 Steps of Emotional Transparency That Cultivates Accountability | with Jonathan Raymond

Many leaders feel frustrated by what seems like a low level of personal ownership among people in their organization. Things don’t get done on time, problems don’t get solved, and issues get ignored rather than proactively addressed before they become problems. Sound familiar?

This episode is part 3 of a four-part series of interviews with Jonathan Raymond about how to practice emotional transparency to cultivate accountability within your team. This time, we talk about the four steps of emotional transparency that cultivates accountability.

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The Era of Inclusion: How to Help Your Team Thrive

Your workplace is rich with diversity – a mix of races, ethnicities, genders, generations, and personality types. But diversity is not the same as inclusion. Leaders would be shocked to know the resources that go untapped and the ideas that go undiscovered simply because certain people are consistently excluded from the conversation.
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189: Dos and Don’ts of Emotional Transparency | with Jonathan Raymond

A couple days ago, the CEO of a small business complained to me that one of his managers has been displaying some of the classic signs of a lack of accountability — brushing off the severity of a mistake, letting tensions build with his own direct reports instead of asking for advice on how to handle it, and reverse-delegating or “throwing turds” for his boss to clean up.

“Does it seem like he doesn’t own the situation … like he doesn’t care as much as you do?” I asked.

“Yes, that’s exactly what it feels like!” he replied. “How can I get him to change?”

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188: Emotional Transparency — The Secret to Accountability | with Jonathan Raymond

Accountability. Many organizations name it one of their top corporate values. And yet no matter how much they talk about accountability, leaders often feel frustrated by what seems like a low level of personal ownership among their employees.

Things don’t get done on time, problems don’t get solved, and issues get ignored rather than proactively addressed before they become problems. Sound familiar?

read more…

186: 4 Tips from Brain Science for Communications That Boost Attention and Learning from Your Workforce | with Jamie Barnes

Play

With so many things competing for attention, leaders at many organizations struggle to get their people to pay enough attention to important communications — such as for change initiatives. And it’s an even bigger struggle to get them to take the messages/information to heart, remember them, and put them into action. Fortunately, neuroscience has provided clues to plan and execute communications that are more engaging and effective.

Jesse’s colleague, communication expert Jamie Barnes, joins him to discuss how to create communications that get the attention of your workforce and make them more likely to retain what they learn and act on it. read more…

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