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Intentional Leaders Podcast with Cyndi Wentland
16 minutes | 4 days ago
Collaboration: Easier said than done.
Most if not all the organizations I’ve ever worked with or for, want collaboration. It’s a no brainer. And then it gets hard. And frustrating. Seemingly endless. Collaboration, easy to desire, difficult to execute. Why? We know that collaboration, can lead to creativity and innovation. And in today’s competitive environment, we all need that. But to do it right requires focus, skill and effective execution.Collaborate is to create. And creation can get messy. We may have differing opinions on how and what to create. At what speed. And at what level of quality.Collaboration requires an intentional focus. This speeds up the process of collaboration and enhances the results.4 key skills that will enhance your results:1. Apply assertive communication: Get others to focus on their needs, wants, values and concerns rather than their solutions.When coming together to collaborate—most of us have a solution in mind. After all, we’ve probably thought about what the ideal option might be, and we want to be prepared for the discussion. Being attached to a solution, in advance of a discussion or exploration of a problem is a barrier to effective collaboration. We must learn to let go of premature discussion of solutions, and consider:Needs: what is essential or very importantWants: a desire or wishValues: something important, principles or standardsConcerns: anxiety; worries 2. Ask thought provoking questions: This will help to uncover what others care about in the areas above. We have to be able to get into people’s heads, understand their thoughts, out loud. If you are leading a collaborative effort, great questions are your best friend. 3. Listen fully and mindfully: The reality is listening mindfully, if tough. I’ve attached a listening style exercise to this episode. See if you know the difference between listening styles, and what is most effective to collaboration. Because the results may surprise you.4. Use critical thinking: Critical thinking means we are focused on the quality of our thinking. We are not thinking more or harder or longer. We are stepping back to examine our thoughts. How influenced are we by the past, or social pressure, or our emotions? Are we focused on facts and evidence? Or are we biased? Biases are an error in our thinking that affects our choices and judgments. They are unconscious, hidden from our view. They pervade our thinking. They influence our ability to collaborate effectively and lead collaboration. Find out more here for some examples (there are hundreds!): https://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/avoiding-psychological-bias.htmCollaboration is vital to our success in organizations, and as leaders. This is such a great competency to learn and master. To be the one who brings groups together and to engage and create—is a differentiator from a leadership perspective. Know that collaboration is a skill set and there is a practice to doing it well, and doing it right. Collaboration is messy and frustrating. Know that is part of the process. But in the end, totally worth it.Listening Styles exercise: https://intentionaleaders.com/news/listening-styles/
13 minutes | 11 days ago
“I don’t have enough time,” Things we tell ourselves that aren't really true.
A common, recurring problem I hear from leaders is that they are too busy. Too many competing demands, tight deadlines, too much to do and not enough time. No time for being proactive, to coach employees, or for self-care. And for so long, I completely agreed. Until I didn’t. Until I realized that being overwhelmed is an emotion, and a choice. Based on my thoughts. Sometimes I still experience this emotion. However, I do recognize it as something I’m choosing. Time is fascinating. Because time is just a mental construct. Time was defined, clocks and calendars were invented to help us navigate through life. Now the framework of time significantly impacts our waking moments, our lives. And that we don’t have enough time.Of course, this is not true.Because we all have enough time. The way we choose to think about it, utilize it, talk about it, affects our results. We have enough time if we are clear on our priorities, if we know the results we want to achieve. If we are mindful of how we are using our time and the quality of the experience.#1 Let’s explore our mindset about time.Scenario 1: I wake and feel already behind because my to do list is lengthy, at work and at home. I chug coffee, gripe at the traffic and charge into work.....Scenario 2: I wake, thankful that I put together my to do list yesterday afternoon. I put my coffee in a to go mug, and head to work....The difference between Scenario 1 and 2 lives only in my mind. The power of my thoughts and how I see time, see myself in the context of a day. If I see time as a scarce commodity—fretting about precious minutes wasted, or resenting time with my team—I will be hurried, impatient. If I expect a “perfect day” free of challenges and problems, when they arise I will be surprised and frazzled. Irritated to change the schedule, resentful. My thoughts about time, create my emotions, which affect my actions….and ultimately generate my results.Examine your thoughts. Do you know you have a choice to see time for what it is, a neutral circumstance? At the end of the day, are you confident knowing you used all your seconds, minutes and hours mindfully and purposefully?#2 Let’s explore our relationship with urgency. Are you addicted?We don’t even realize how powerfully urgency affects our mindset and our choices. Stephen Covey examined this in his amazing 1994 book, First Things First.His concept is about getting used to the adrenaline rush of handling crisis; getting dependent on it for our sense of energy and excitement. Do these questions resonate?To overcome the urgency addition, we have to realize it exists. We have to be mindful of the traps that we or others set about priorities, or requests or deadlines. We have to realize that it compromises our ability to make choices that keep us effective and sane.Seeds to plant around time:Clarify your priorities: personal and professional.Expect things to take more time than you planned, to not go as planned, expect to be interrupted. It’s when we are unrealistic that we’re so consistently disappointed.Change your mindset to one of focus and awareness. Be mindful of how you are using your time, whether it’s aligned with your priorities.Make decisions and don’t beat yourself up for decisions in the past.Examine your relationship with urgency, know when something is urgent to you and to others, and when it is not. Engage in an urgency detox. One day. 86,400 seconds. Do you have enough time? You have a choice.
15 minutes | 18 days ago
The Power of Assertive Language: How to Mean What You Say & Say What You Mean without Being Mean
Have you ever dropped a hint that someone you worked with just didn’t get? Soft peddled feedback that wasn’t received? Or lashed out in frustration because you were just so irritated with someone’s behavior?Yes, that moment. The moment when we have something in our mind, something we need or want or expect, but we don’t fully formulate the words to make it happen. To get understanding. Assertiveness is bigger than communication. It’s about how we feel about our rights. As a human being, and as an employee. Or as a leader. It’s pretty easy to observe someone’s assertiveness through their body language, actions and communication.This is about mindset and it’s about skill set, to communicate effectively, clearly and respectfully.Passive is a style of avoiding expressing opinions or feelings, not protecting their rights, and not identifying and meeting needs.Aggressive is a style in which individuals express their feelings and opinions and advocate for their needs in a way that violates the rights of others.Passive aggressive is a style in which individuals appear passive on the surface but are really acting out anger in a subtle, indirect, or behind-the-scenes way.Assertive is a style in which individuals clearly state opinions and feelings, firmly advocate for their rights and needs without violating the rights of others.Our style might not be universal. For example, be more passive with those who have more power and authority, we may defer more. With our peers, we may be passive, or passive aggressive saying things “in jest” or maybe we’ve known someone for a long time and don’t filter our words (aggressive).All of these options don’t lead to clarity, effective understanding, or trust. If we think of a line in the sand, they are “below” the line options. Why is being assertive so challenging? Author Richard Banks identified some typical obstacles:We don’t know what we wantWe're unsure of our emotionsWe may feel our needs don’t matterWe want to be liked at all costs; worried about offending others We become flustered, not communicating effectivelyOr have have experienced excessive criticism in the pastWe're scared of saying the wrong thingWe fear retaliationOr are afraid of what people will thinkWhich of those might be true for you, sometimes?Some seeds to plant, considerations about strengthening assertiveness:1. Think about your rights (see download below).2. Assess your level of assertiveness, does it vary depending on the audience and situation? When and why? Consider how to apply assertiveness consistently.3. Understand your thoughts and feelings. Figure out what you want and need.4. Focus on aligning your body language to your message.5. Practice with boundaries, saying no and speaking from an “I” perspective.The value of assertiveness is tremendous. By increasing our own confidence and self-resect, we also increase the effectiveness of our communication. We can assert ourselves without undermining or trampling on others. This leads us to more respectful relationships. These benefits are true for us in our personal and professional relationships. And as a leader, it is critical to building trusting and long lasting connections with those we aspire to lead.Assess Your Rights: http://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Rights-of-Assertiveness.pdfExplore our Membership
16 minutes | 25 days ago
Leaning into Political Savvy: Strengthen Your Political Muscles
This month in our Intentionaleaders membership, we're tacking political savvy. Here's a sneak peek...Art Petty described 5 Unavoidable Facts of Organizational Life:Everywhere humans gather, a political environment emerges.In every political environment, some individuals develop more influence than others.Those who have the most influence decide what gets done and who does what.Influence doesn’t accrue accidentally—it takes deliberate effort to cultivate the right relationships.You don’t get to claim, “I don’t want to play those games.” (See #4: those games are all about relationship development.)I think about it like this: Political savvy is the ability to understand situations, people and context to influence outcomes and achieve results while not ticking people off (or even better yet, they like, respect and trust you).Here’s the good news. We can get better at exploring and navigating these dynamics. It can sound complicated, my goal is to simplify it.Because so many years ago, this area tripped me up. At the heart of being politically savvy, it’s about getting positive results. Here are some ideas to accomplish this goal.4 Foundations to Political SavvySelf-Awareness: We have so many things going on. Our brain helps us by processing much of our day automatically. Yay for our brain, boo for our self-awareness. It’s difficult to be savvy if you aren’t mindful of how you come across.Situational Awareness: Means being fully present in situations. Being aware of your surroundings, of dynamics and power bases, and what is really going on. Because any encounter we have is potentially ripe with insights and information, if we pay attention to it through that lens. And those that are political savvy, consistently do so.Networking: This is not about networking for networking sake, but knowing what you already have, and seeking to build and strengthen it.Organizational Culture/Dynamics: This is a huge area in itself. But we must understand cultural norms and practices that we need to be mindful of, to achieve our positive results. I think about it in the 4 Ps. Priorities, Players, Performance and Practices.Priorities: Is about understanding the most important targets for the organization, for you, and your team.Players: Goes beyond our discussion on your network to consider the people who have power to help or hinder your ability to accomplish your goals and results. Do you know know who they are?Performance: Is exploring the way productivity and performance is both viewed and acknowledged within the organization.Practices: Are the consistent methods or processes used to share information, drive priorities and address ongoing challenges.Assess these areas, fill in the gaps.Being political savvy means achieving results. It means putting in the time and care to be successful in your goals, setting your team up for success and adding value to the organization.It does not typically happen randomly or spontaneously. It takes focus an action. Work and practice. Strengthening your savvy is like strengthening your muscles. Sometime there is pain. Sometimes you will sweat. Sometimes you need a protein bar.But in the end, the practice will be worth it.Want to assess your network? Download this worksheet: http://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Networking-Assessment.pdf
13 minutes | a month ago
Got Triggers? The Things that Bug You at Work
Leaders who have the ability to lead under pressure garner more respect and followership. This is not to imply that a display of emotions is not valuable—it absolutely is. This is the difference between responding appropriately with emotional reactions in a manner that builds trust and aligns with our intentions.So, fill in the blank:It makes me so angry at work when others:If I could change one behavior about people I work with, it would be:If only people I work with would _____ I would be so much less stressedI get so frustrated at work when:These can be our triggers.TriggersTriggers consist of thoughts, feelings, and events that seem to “trigger” an automatic response from us.The word “trigger” is important here because the idea is that our reaction occurs automatically. It might seem as if the emotional reaction is completely involuntary.The truth is that this reaction, like everything else that we do, is a choice. Learning how to identify our personal emotional triggers is the first step to taking control over how we choose to respond.By Laura K. Schenck, Ph.D., LPCWhat I’ve also come to notice is that oftentimes our triggers are connected to our values. If I value honesty and integrity, I’ll probably get pretty upset if I believe someone is lying to me. If I value hard work and dependability, I’ll likely be ticked off at those I think aren’t putting in the time or effort required to do the work.Here’s the process: 1. Trigger, 2. Automatic Thought, 3. Destructive ResponseIt’s important for you to be aware in advance of your triggers, so you can maintain self-composure. Our challenge then is to disrupt this process. [Spoiler Alert! This. Is. Hard.]Changing our response to triggers is a challenge because the more consistent we react in a certain way, the stronger the neuropathway is in our brain. It's a superhighway to a potentially destructive response.To disrupt triggers:Trigger: Effective self-management begins with self-awareness. Be proactive and recognize the people, issues and challenges that de-rail you.Feel the Emotion: Emotions are felt. Think about anger and how it shows up…like warmth, our heartbeat speeds up, muscles feel tight, shortness of breath, etc. We must get good at identifying when we are experiencing an emotion, in order to interrupt the pattern. Pay attention to your body.Identify the Thought Error: Our thoughts produce our emotions, identify the thought creating the negative emotion.Reframe: This is a critical piece of altering our reactions. We have to ask ourselves:What are the facts?Am I exaggerating?Is there another explanation for this situation?Respond Constructively: Choose your thought and emotion. Respond with composure.Planting some seeds:Do the values and triggers inventories.Print the triggers worksheet and examine your patterns.To create awareness, do a daily reflection, look for patterns.Identify possible thought errors and possible ways to reframe negative thoughts. http://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Values-Inventory.pdfhttp://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Triggers-Inventory.pdfhttp://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/Exploring-Triggers-Worksheet.pdf
13 minutes | a month ago
Knowing Your Values: The Need for Transparency in Leading Others
Last year in Madison as in other communities there was great social unrest. On a main street downtown, State Street, store fronts were boarded and then eventually literally covered in murals representing individual and collective values of a community. What a sight. Heartbreaking in some ways. Inspiring in others. There was pain and there was hope. Storefronts were a gallery of values.But in everyday life, and in leading or managing others…our values aren’t as apparent. We don’t walk around with the words etched across our faces, or our body.Wouldn’t it be great if we were that transparent? For your boss who values integrity. Your employee who values empathy. Your peer who values teamwork. We could understand their foundation and so frequently their behaviors. You would probably think very carefully about navigating, these values if they were so apparent, and maybe even to honor them.Because the culmination of all our values, our beliefs make us who we are. They give us a unique identify. Others form impressions of us based on them.Our values are our principles, or standards of behavior, the judgements we make of what is important in life. They guide us, they inform our decision-making process, they create focus and they also can create anger—when they are violated.When we live life in alignment of our values, we are happier, less stressed. More in balance. When we don’t we’ll experience a dissonance. Somethings not right. And sometimes we don’t know what that is. Values guide us, but where do they come from? Sometimes it’s influenced heavily by our family, religion, relationships, work situations, or education. We're affected by our environment. And very frequently, we aren’t even aware of this process, we adopt values unconsciously. Some of our core beliefs aren’t recognized as such.Knowing how much they affect us, I am consistently weaving this discussion of values into leadership classes openly and transparentlyBecause it’s hard to lead with our values if we don’t know what they are. Once I was facilitating a team session and I knew in advance there were several people not “getting along.” When we did the values assessment and they noted their top values on a sticky note, it was very obvious to see where some of the disconnects were.It opened their eyes to some of those differences, but also how rich their relationship could be if they valued the diversity of beliefs. How could these values work in harmony? And how could they use them to purposefully strengthen the relationship? It was a moment of clarity and awareness. And a deepening of trust.Planting Leadership Seeds:Assess your values:Values Inventory Free ResourcesValues in Action AssessmentPrioritize them; navigate them with constraint, find those that are most importantKeep them in the forefrontUse for decision-making and goal settingIt’s important to remember, values are aspirational, they guide us. When we don’t live by them, we don’t have to beat ourselves up—we determine how we can do better moving forward.Here’s an inspiring quote by Elvis: “Values are like fingerprints. Nobody’s are the same, but you leave them all over everything you do.”My thought is let’s leave them on everything we do, but also talk about them transparently. Because then we have a chance to be like the stunning gallery on State Street in Madison. The honoring of similarities and our differences. That’s the imprint we leave on the world.
10 minutes | a month ago
Examining Your Confidence
In leadership classes we talk a lot about leadership presence. Do you have presence or not, or even what does that mean to you? With this discussion, inevitably, the conversation turns to confidence and the relationship of confidence to leadership presence.What is your relationship with your own confidence? How confident are you and why? What situations are you the most confident?In presenting, or facilitating or leading, most people say they’re more confident because they know what they’re talking about…the more prepared and knowledgeable they are, the more confident.But what is confidence? By definition, it is: a feeling of self-assurance arising from one's appreciation of one's own abilities or qualities.But notice what is doesn’t say…it doesn’t say, confidence comes from being prepared, having a plan, or even knowing what I am talking about (i.e., expertise, or I’ve done it before—I know what to expect).Yet typically, I hear people say that they have confidence because: #1 I've done it before, #2 I have a plan or #3 I am prepared. And yes, plans create safety. Certainty creates safety. If we’re safe we’re okay. We’re okay if we go into a situation and look and act professional. Leaderful. Competent. We believe that the past or that knowledge and preparation will bring us confidence.But is that really true? Who was prepared for the 2020 global pandemic? I would say not many. But how many leaders and managers continued to project confidence regardless of the uncertainty or unexpectedness of COVID? So many.They didn’t have experience in navigating their company or their teams through such a challenge, but so many people showed up confident anyway. Because of their belief in themselves to move forward, to figure it out, the courage to show up and try something new. To make decisions, even if they weren’t the “right ones” (yes, using air quotes, because what was right or wrong? No one really knew.).They left their insecurities behind, or they recognized them—and took action anyway. Because insecurity is uncertainty or anxiety about oneself. Maybe it’s better to be uncertain about the situation, but not about ourselves and our ability to handle it. Because even if we don’t make the right choices, we learn, we gain confidence. Through action. And courage.So, what if confidence was based on our mindset, not our skillset. In addition to our experiences, we carry around a great deal that can give us confidence in pretty much any situation.What about your overall abilities? Are you a good problem solver? Are you good at trouble-shooting? What are your strengths? Are you a good relator? Learner? What are the qualities that make you successful? Determination? Perseverance? How can you show up and bring those attributes, those qualities to any situation in order to generate confidence? To bring your presence to a situation. Regardless of your preparation. And if we can shift our mindset, how to can we strengthen our confidence? Here are my 3 seeds for deliberate leadership:1. Courage: to try, to fail, to grow, to risk…be afraid and do it anyway2. Conviction: in yourself, your value, your values, your beliefs, your truth3. Composure: be mindful, present, aware, choose your thoughts, your emotions, your reactionsWhat do you need the confidence to do right now? If you could take a courageous action what would it be?If you believed in yourself, everyday, how would you show up?Because that is the secret to your leadership presence.
14 minutes | 2 months ago
Manager or Leader: Who do you want to be?
The definition of a manager that I’ve used in business classes is that a manager is responsible for 4 primary functions: to plan, organize, lead and control in an efficient and effective manner. So, if you do those functions either with people or projects, then you are a manager. And here are some amazing statistics about how people feel about this role: 10% of managers say they're prepared, trained and qualified to lead48% of first-time managers fail68% confess they really don't like being managersFundamentals of Management, Robbins, DeCenzo & Coulter, 2015 But what makes one a leader? This is complex area. There have been endless theories researched, developed and communicated over time. But it’s also confusing because there are 2,870,000,000 (billion 870 million) search results on Google today when you search leadership.Where do we start? I think of leaders as those who generate followers. That can be followers due to the role, like I have direct reports. Or those that we follow out of reference, vision, purpose, charisma, expertise, or that special something that draws us to others, that we simply want to go where they go. We know it will be an experience.So, you can lead without managing but it’s important to lead if you are a manager. And some are better than others.Because most people are promoted based on their expertise or their tenure, not by their capability or skill set to lead. (Back to those statistics.) And if we don’t know how, how can we show up as our best selves?We don’t know what we don’t know. Until we know better. So, we learn to deliberately learn to manage and lead.What are the top ways to accomplish this goal?Seek out trainingFind a mentor: someone experienced who will give you guidanceGet a coach: someone who will give you feedback on what you are doing effectively and what you need to changeGo to online learning: classes or a community to access best practices, methods, tools and skillsGo to school, though my MBA did prepare me about leading business, it did not prepare me to be a leader (esp. of people)Do it yourself through reading, being a student of others—find role models and those that inspire youLearn on the job: you’ll discover what works and what does not (though this is time consuming and sometimes painful)It’s important to choose. Be deliberate.In planting a few seeds, here are some thoughts:Start with your strengths. Know them. 4 functions of managing are to: plan, organize, lead and control (i.e., measure); what are you good at? Uncover your development areas about being a manager. Or if you want to be considered a leader, what do you need to hone so that others will follow you?Then actively strengthen those areas; be focused; give yourself a timeframe. Ask someone to hold you accountable.Know that to be a leader, you will be a continuous learner, be a lifelong learner.Because if you manage people, your people will talk about you. Think about what you want them to say. How you’d like them to describe you. And then focus on those areas. On purpose.After all, that is why I named my company intentional leaders. Because I think both managing and leading should be deliberate. That we know where we’re going. And we get there through clear purpose, intentions and actions. So, who do you want to be?
19 minutes | 2 months ago
Can you motivate? Yes or no? Do you consider this part of your role as a manager?Question 2: Why don’t employees perform? Many times I hear….lack of training, tools, knowledge, lack of engagement, , unclear goals, personal issues, lack direction, no feedback …..and…they don’t care, they lack purpose, they’re lazy. Ugh. But if you can motivate them, and that’s your job. What’s the disconnect? Why would there be people who are unmotivated if we can motivate them?The reality is that people are already motivated. They may not, however, be motivated to what you want them to do.Your job is to create an environment in which others are motivated to perform at their best. Bring out their motivation, their energy.How? What are all the ways you can motivate? And do you know the difference between intrinsic and extrinsic motivators?Extrinsic motivators are from outside of you, intrinsic motivators are from within you. One is about what I receive after I complete a task, which may be expected or unexpected. The other is about the experience while I’m completing the task. Which is more common? = ExtrinsicMore sustainable? = IntrinsicMore difficult to execute? IntrinsicWhile we can’t change who people are, what we can do is help them to discover their intrinsic motivators. And also connect or align intrinsic motivators with things that maybe we enjoy less.How I wish I would have discovered that earlier in my career.Early in my career, it was all about progression. I was motivated for the end result. In hindsight was I really intrinsically motivated in doing the work? Did I enjoy the politics inherent in my role? The more I got away from the actual learning experience, the less satisfied I was. But a lack of self-awareness, or my comfort in my role and comp and bonuses kept me there.But now, it’s about doing what I love to do. Not pursuing the tangible but recognizing that by pursuing the work I love, the tangibles come anyway. Ah, that's the beauty of the universe.Here are 4 ways to begin to understand intrinsic motivation:Take a strengths assessment: See, Discover Your Strengths, by Don Clifton (from Gallup)Explore a work based personality assessments: DiSC assessments have a version for managers, individual contributors and leaders which have a behavioral focus and are excellent tools about our energy (and what drains us!)Consider the Individual Dimensions Inventory: this is an assessment tool from Management Research Group, and focuses on the emotional satisfaction we get from work related dimensions (I am also certified on this tool and can also get you more information if you are interested)Take a values inventory: learn your core beliefs; are they aligned with what you are doing? The Values Institute on Character offers a freebie: The VIA Survey: 31 Ways to Recognize Your Strengths and Act on Them (positivepsychology.com)Planting some leadership seeds:Understand various types of motivators; get to know your employees and their preferences for both extrinsic and intrinsic motivators.Use extrinsic strategically: be thoughtful, reinforce specifics, point out what you want more of from others around you, not a general “hey you’re awesome” type of reinforcement (feels good, but could lack impact).Do a wellness check
13 minutes | 2 months ago
Review the following statements. Indicate if you AGREE or DISAGREE.1. Your intelligence is something very basic about you that you can’t change very much. 2. You can learn new things, but you can’t really change how intelligent you are. AGREE 3. Not matter how much intelligence you have, you can always change it quite a bit. AGREE 4. You can always substantially change how intelligent you are. This is Carol Dweck’s work she explored this concept of mindset—fixed and growth. She’s a Stanford psychological and has done decades of research in this area. Carol is a rock star.Here is a brief overview of the differences…Fixed Mindset = Intelligence and talent is fixed at birth“I’m either good at it, or I’m not” feel that my abilities determine everything, my success or lack of it“When I fail, I’m no good”look smart in every situation, prove myselffeel threatened by the success of others(NOTE: If you agreed with statements 1 and 2 above, this is FIXED)Growth Mindset = Intelligence and talent can be grown and developed “I can learn anything I want to” feel that my effort and attitude determine everything“When I fail, I learn”stretch myself, take risks and learnfind lessons and inspiration in others’ success(NOTE: If you agreed with statements 3 and 4 above, this is GROWTH) The great news is that we can change our mindset. We can help our brain to create a love of learning and resilience.For me, this showed up in math….until I challenged this long standing belief. Deliberately. In grad school. While I’m certainly not a math wizard, I am adept and capable. And I don’t beat myself up over what I know and don’t know about math anymore.Consider something that you don’t think you’re good at. Then answer the following questions.What are you not good at?How do you talk to yourself about this belief?Where did the belief originate?Do you have any evidence to the contrary? (If so, why not choose to belief those examples?)Is it still serving you to believe this, or is it interfering with your leadership effectiveness (i.e., what are the consequences of not changing)? If so, change it.Here are some seed of learning around a growth mindset:1. Explore and discuss growth and fixed mindset with your team; watch a TED talk or video from Carol Dweck2. Challenge yourself and your team to actively identify when you find yourself if a fixed mindset—realize that you can choose a different narrative3. Tackle one belief about yourself; take action to learn; find someone who is “good” at that thing and learn from them; reframe your language to be more growth oriented:I am learning to be comfortable with difficult conversationsI am becoming a person who addresses challenging discussionsSummary· Explored growth and fixed mindset; just by knowing this information, you can think and act in new ways· Even if we are a good learner, chances are there are limiting beliefs we have· Talk about this concept with your team· Create a plan to alter a fixed belief you have about yourself
9 minutes | 3 months ago
Despite the many stories of famous people who triumphed over failure, many of us fear it. When did we learn that? What if failure was part of the curriculum to becoming who we are meant to be? That all those lessons make us stronger, not weaker. Ah, but that involves a mindset shift, a new belief that failure and mistakes are lessons, and not be avoided or feared.Can we embrace this strategy? Because despite the feelings we generate due to those fails and mistakes, what is the opposite approach? And what does that teach? Teach our employees (and our children) that failures are to be avoided? That mistakes are to be feared? I wish I could go back in time and tell my more youthful self, not be so afraid. To risk, to make mistakes, to fail. And to feel the feelings associated with something not working out as I had intended, and knowing that was okay too. That I was still okay. Those stories I told myself about how I "should have done this," or "shouldn't have done that" were just that. Stories.And, just to be clear, I'm not advocating for careless risks, running around with scissors, recklessness. I talking about changing the narrative on how we see failures and what they mean about us. So planting some seeds for a more intentional approach, I'd advocate to:Have goals big enough to challenge you, to stretch you, and then plan to make mistakes, and fail along the way. You only really fail if you stop reaching for that goal.Talk to your team openly about mistakes and failures. Learn from them. Be vulnerable about what you've learned. Allow them to be vulnerable too. Reinforce the learning, and move on.Practice forgiveness for yourself and others. Because this too, is part of the journey.
17 minutes | 3 months ago
Exploring Locus of Control
What's your relationship with control? Not how controlling are you (oh I know, some of you are labeling yourselves right now, "I am a control freak!" which most of us mean in a like endearing and wonderful way!). Rather, how do you see yourself relative to events in your life. This episode gives a glimpse into your thoughts. And how these thoughts affect your ability to manage your stress.In this episode, I highlight stress strategies, if you'd like a free download, click here:http://intentionaleaders.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Stress-Strategies-Generic.pdf
16 minutes | 3 months ago
How to Be a Conscious Leader
This episode highlights the beauty and challenges of learning, following Martin M. Broadwell's model and the "Four Levels of Teaching." Though relevant to teaching, this framework becomes valuable to explore relative to learning and where, as adults, we sometimes get stuck. The 4 levels are:1. Unconscious incompetence: Where no one wants to be or hang out very long!2. Conscious incompetence: Where we identify a learning need or gap in our knowledge and skills.3. Conscious competence: Where we learn and have to try really hard to get it right!4. Unconscious competence: Where you show up to work not remembering how you got there (meaning, it's second nature!).As a leader you can apply this model to your own learning and to the challenges your team will also face. In this episode, I'll use SMART goals as an example of this process.To use the model effectively consider these three "seeds" of learning:Notice your thoughts when you're learning something new. Don't judge yourself, but notice when you're saying negative things to yourself (e.g., "This is too hard," "I'm too old to learn this," "This sucks!").Feel all the feelings. Allow them, experience them. Feelings of awkwardness, frustration, irritation, embarrassment....they're all part of our learning journey. Those feelings won't hurt us, we need to work through them to experience more confidence and success.Notice when it becomes easier. Celebrate when you (or others!) learn something new. Give yourself permission to acknowledge, recognize, reward yourself for the growth. And for working through the challenges to mastery.Because by observing this process in yourself and with others, you'll model resilience. And next time, it will be just a little easier!
2 minutes | 3 months ago
Intentional Leaders Podcast Welcome Trailer
Welcome to the Intentional Leaders Podcast with Cyndi Wentland. We'll focus on all things leadership related to take your skills and practices to a new level, with small habits that make a big difference.
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