Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Networking’

NUTS ‘N BOLTS LEADERSHIP

November 12, 2012 Leave a comment

I came across this book called “How To” Strategies and Practical Tips For Leaders at ALL Levels” by Eric Harvey and Paul Sims. It appealed to me as a refresher to those of us who have been in management for a long time as well as a training tool for people just beginning in that arena.

I’ve copied some pieces of their message below:

“If you’ve been in management for any length of time, you’ve undoubtedly come   to realize that it’s a multi-faceted profession – a somewhat complex calling that includes the classic and academically described duties of “planning, directing, controlling, etc.” … and much more. 

Like a coin, leadership has two sides. There’s the proactive side – the actions you initiate to positively affect people and their performance. And there’s the reactive side – the actions you take in response to unanticipated issues and situations. The key to these equally important sides is ACTION. And the way we see it, in order to act properly and effectively in these fast-paced times, your management “toolbox” needs to be filled with solid nuts and bolts techniques.

Here are some “How To” tips that should help:

  • Address Performance Problems Early. One of the surest ways to demotivate employees is allowing people to do sub-par work. When that happens, others have to pick up the slack. You owe it to the rest of the team to address an employee’s deficiencies as soon as you become aware of them. Waiting only increases the intensity of everyone else’s bad feelings.
  • Think “Development.” Make developing the members of your team (and yourself) one of your top priorities. Besides providing formal training, pursue opportunities for building skills, awareness, and confidence that require minimal time and resources (e.g., watching videos, distributing industry publications, mentoring).
  • Always Give the “Why.” A combined lesson from Human Nature 101 and Common Sense 101: There’s a much better chance that people will be motivated and give their enthusiastic support if they understand the reason behind a goal, assignment, or decision. So, always follow the what with the why
  • Teach Business Literacy. One powerful way to get people motivated is to teach them the business of the business. The more people understand how a successful organization is run, the better they’ll be able to contribute to your overall mission and the bottom line … and feel like they truly are a part of your success.
  • Let your employees lead. Help others on your team develop by letting them take the lead on certain activities and projects. Most of us like “being in charge” – at least some of the time. It’s a great way to build skills, commitment, and responsibility.
  • Involve them in Decision Making. Have an important decision to make? Let employees decide! Or at least ask for their ideas and suggestions. They are, after all, the ones who will feel the impact the most. Besides, you’ll probably end up with a better decision – one that your people will be inclined to support because they helped make it.
  • Keep them informed.Hold regular “state of the business” meetings to keep everyone informed on what’s happening within the organization (future plans, new products or services, planned purchases, etc.). Make sure people do NOT feel “kept in the dark.
  • Spread the wealth.Rotate the drudgework so that everyone shares part of the load. Likewise, spread around the high-profile assignments so that every person has an occasional opportunity to strut his or her stuff.
  • Respect their time. If you expect employees to believe that their work is important, you have to believe it, too. More importantly, you have to behave like you believe it! Don’t expect people to drop whatever they’re doing every time you need something. Instead, ask if they have a few minutes to chat. Better yet, ask for a time when they’ll be available to meet with you.”

All of these are very solid tips that can help all of us become and/or remain better leaders for our businesses.

Andrea McAfee

Bayless Engineering

www.baylessengineering.com

Advertisements

Get Your “Generations Working Together”

July 30, 2012 2 comments

This topic is something many of us employers don’t think about until we find dissention within our workforce.

If you’re looking to narrow the gaps that inherently exist between different workplace generations the above titled book by Laura E. Bernstein offers the following tips each manager needs to do!

  • Acknowledge that everyone wants to be treated with dignity and respect. And, remember that those expectations will likely be defined differently by different people.
  • Give coworkers, customers, and suppliers the same benefit of the doubt that you wish from them.
  • Presume that everyone you interact with is motivated by good intentions – unless they prove otherwise.
  • Accept that you can learn from others’ different life experiences, perspectives, and approaches – just as others can learn from yours.
  • Make an effort to focus on your similarities with others rather than your differences. Find, appreciate, and celebrate the common ground you share with those you work with … and work for.
  • Be willing to flex your natural style and preferences in order to work more effectively with all of your colleagues. Increased cooperation and collaboration results in greater success … for EVERYONE!
  • Be open and tactfully honest about your personal “hot buttons” (i.e., recurring sources of tension or conflict) and mindful of the things that bother others.
  • Remember that each individual brings something special (and needed) to the table … each person represents a piece that must be present in order for your organizational puzzle to be complete.
  • Focus on what really matters: productivity, teamwork, customer service, and mutual success.
  • Accept the fact that how you treat, deal with, and respond to others is purely and simply a matter of your own choosing.

I believe that many of these practices should be followed not only in business but are equally important to observe in our daily lives.

Andrea McAfee

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

www.baylessengineering.com

VIA … The Place To Be

February 6, 2012 Leave a comment

I am a strong believer in VIA and the many wonderful things the organization brings to the business community, and I hope you are, too. Here are a few reasons why I’m a strong supporter of VIA:

  • Imagine being where there are like-minded individuals who are ready and willing to build relationships to make the business community stronger.
  • Imagine being where you have access to key decision makers in the business and political arena.
  • Imagine being where your friends are happy to see you every time.

Well, that’s VIA! VIA is the place to be.

If you’re new to VIA or maybe have been a member for a while but you haven’t fully explored VIA, let me give you some insights into the members of VIA.

  • The VIA Board is committed to the success of the organization and is a “roll-up your sleeves” board. You will find Board members on every committee and you will find them to be the premier Ambassadors of VIA.
  • There is a wide array of committees, so I’m sure you’ll find something that speaks to you. Depending on our needs and programming, we’ll creating short-term committees, but here’s a listing of our standing committees:

Member Experience

Marketing

Programs

B2B Regional Expo

Community Education/Connecting to Success

VIA STAR (Student partnered with local businesses)

  • We partner with others to provide members with actionable events from monthly luncheons to business education classes.
  • There are countless opportunities to build connections with others face-to-face. How? Well, through the luncheons, Get Acquainted breakfasts, Meet the Board event, B2B regional expo, VIA ROCKS!, and Business in Action breakfasts.
  • There are other non-face-to-face ways to connect with others via telephone, email, Facebook, and LinkedIn. If you haven’t checked out the conversations on LinkedIn, stop by for a visit.
  • Finally, we’ll serve as your “business matchmaker”. If there is someone you want to meet in the business community, let us know and we’ll do our best to make it happen!

Now, if you need more convincing that VIA is THE place to be, I invite you to contact anyone on the Board or comment here or visit us in the virtual world. Let us know why you think VIA is the place to be!

Diana Meyer
Chairwoman of VIA Board
President, Meyer Marketing Intelligence
661.254.6141
dmeyer@meyermktg.com
http://www.meyermktg.com
http://www.linkedin.com/in/dianameyer0217
http://meyermktg.wordpress.com
http://www.facebook.com/meyermktg
http://www.twitter.com/dianawm

What’s Your Approach … Train or Hire the Skills Your Company Needs?

July 1, 2011 Leave a comment

Recently there have been numerous media pronouncements that, despite record unemployment levels, employers are finding skills shortages and mismatches as they look to add to their overall staffing levels.  A growing number of employers are taking the approach that, in order to keep staff levels at the optimal level and with the appropriate skill sets, they need to up-skill existing employees and then recruit at the easier to fill lesser skilled positions.

So what’s your company philosophy and why?  Are you enduring long recruitment cycles as you look for that “perfect” fit or are you taking the approach of increasing the skill levels of your existing employees through formal training, on-the-job training or a mixture of both?

Joe Klocko

Director, Center for Applied Competitive Technologies

College of the Canyons

 

Do You Work in a High-Integrity Organization?

May 29, 2011 1 comment

Recently I ran across this excerpt from “LEADING TO ETHICS” 10 Leadership Strategies For Building A High-Integrity Organization by Eric Harvey, Andy Smith, and Paul Sims.

Do You Work in a High-Integrity Organization?

High-integrity, ethical leaders:

Build Values and Ethics Awareness.
They regularly communicate and discuss the organization’s shared values, operating principles, and ethical standards – making sure they are understood, supported, and accepted at all levels.

Hold People Accountable.
They hold themselves and others accountable for ethical behavior. And they have zero-tolerance for values violations because they know that “one bad apple can spoil the bunch.”

Lead By Example.
They recognize that they earn the right to expect others to perform with integrity when they, themselves, “walk the talk.”

Use Values To Drive Decisions.
They apply the organization’s values and guiding principles when making decisions – whether big and strategic, or small and seemingly insignificant. They realize that ethics are displayed in everything we do, and everything we do counts.

Ensure In-Sync Policies and Practices.
They make sure that rules and standards support the organization’s values and ethics at every level. And, should an ethical dilemma occur, they welcome the opportunity to resolve the issue quickly and without fear of reprisal.

Pay Attention To Perceptions.
They pay close attention to the feelings, opinions, and reactions of their colleagues, their employees, the customers they serve, and everyone in their circle of influence. They realize that perceptions ARE reality when it comes to ethics and integrity.

Hire and Promote Ethical People.
They use the organization’s mission, vision, and values as criteria for hiring and promotion decisions. And, they ONLY select those individuals who believe in these principles and who behave with integrity.

This served as a reminder to me that there is more to “doing business” than just “doing business”. It also prompts one to look within their own organization (s) to learn whether not only they, themselves, but also management, and even employees measure up to these high standards of integrity.

Andrea McAfee

Controller

Bayless Engineering & Manufacturing

www.baylessengineering.com

New VIA Website!

The new VIA Website was prominently featured on the front page of the Business section in the Signal!  Check it out.

http://www.the-signal.com/section/24/article/38995/

Signal VIA Photo

Scott Capistrano, President of Status Not Quo and Kathy Norris, CEO of VIA. Photo courtesy of The Signal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scott Capistrano

Status Not Quo

http://www.statusnotquo.com

Why VIA? For a Collective Voice

June 4, 2010 3 comments

Why VIA?  Discover the power of a collective voice. How are we going to hold the attention of our politicians, except by banding together?

VIA has existed as an organization for over 29 years.  VIA was originally formed to get the attention of the local politicians that represented the areas encompassed by the Valencia Industrial Park.  Since then VIA has grown and diversified, and now covers a greater geographic area, but one thing has remained constant: VIA is the voice of industry in Santa Clarita.

There are many other groups in Santa Clarita that represent businesses of all kinds.  Each exists for a specific purpose, doing many good things for their constituents and the community.

VIA is unique among the representative groups in Santa Clarita for several reasons:

  1. VIA is entirely supported by its members, and does not depend on government funds
  2. VIA is local, representing only the Santa Clarita Valley
  3. VIA’s primary focus is business to business (B2B), to serve our local manufacturers and the service companies that serve businesses.

Because of these factors, VIA is a reasonably “pure” collective voice, truly representing the specific needs of industry in the Santa Clarita Valley.  VIA’s only political agenda is to advance the business interests of its members.  For years, VIA has provided a unified voice to support various transportation and infra-structure projects.  This support helps our region attract state and federal dollars to fund projects.  These are dollars that could easily flow to other regions instead.

Come to any VIA event, and you are certain to run into: 1) a City Council member or a City Staff member, and 2) the deputies of your county, state, and federal representatives.  Why are our politicians such dependable participants of VIA events?  It is extremely efficient for our representatives to come to a VIA event.  At the event, the deputies and representatives can meet with the leaders of our business community, as well as with the other deputies and representatives.  For the VIA members, the VIA events are an extremely low cost and time efficient method of getting access to the politicians who represent us.

The politicians need our input.  Unless we tell them, they don’t know what is important to work on.  Unless we tell them, our reps don’t know what is hampering our businesses.  By giving our politicians feedback, we can encourage them to do more of the good things.  By backing up our politicians, we can help them find the resolve to do the right things while in session.

Think about how much work it would be if you had to connect yourself, one-on-one, with each representative.  A VIA membership is a great bargain that quickly pays for itself if you use it.

Andy Pattantyus

Andy is the President of Strategic Modularity, Inc. http://www.strategicmodularity.com/ and has been a member of VIA since 2003.  Andy is also a member of The ACA Group http://www.theacagroup.com/