It could be that one of the main reasons you are a successful business leader is that you really know how to talk. You’ve been rewarded in your career for being able to talk your way into (or out of) anything. You’ve been successful in convincing people, inspiring people, and getting your way because of your ability to talk. But, like most things in life, too much of a good thing can turn a strength into a weakness.
Millennials get a bad rap, but are they really that different from any other generation of people?
When I stopped to think about the common millennial characteristics we hear about so often, I realized how many of those same traits are also prevalent among entrepreneurs. How we outwardly demonstrate these traits may look different, but at the core our values are shared. I believe this is an opportunity for tremendous results if managed from a place of shared values and effective communication.
I took up crew rowing in an 8-oared shell at age 50 with a local community club here in my hometown. One thing I learned quickly is that we must each trust one another to do our jobs — and with perfect timing — or the boat simply won’t go fast, or worse, won’t go at all.
This has become the perfect team metaphor for me. Rowing relies more on the perfect cohesion of a team than any other sport. In a game like football or basketball, one star player can carry an otherwise mediocre team to victory, but that’s not so in rowing. No single rower can make the boat go faster by himself, but it only takes one rower being just the tiniest bit off to slow it down a lot. The same thing goes for your company’s leadership team.
Once there was a football team who overcame an upset loss to a rival and made it to the playoffs, only to lose in the semi-finals.
The following year, they lost to the same rival, again overcame the loss to make it to the playoffs, but this time, they won the championship.
Obviously, I’m talking about the Alabama Crimson Tide’s 2014 and 2015 seasons. They found themselves in the same scenario in two different years.
All too often, leaders and managers of teams in business, overlook the importance of celebrating small wins. Have you ever heard your boss say “It’s about time this team made some progress”? (I know I have in my early career in corporate sales) Although the intent was to recognize progress, the tone was negative and uninspiring.