PD Strategies Blog

PD Strategies Blog

Performance and Development Strategies Blog is the informational place to get timely and purposeful articles on the issues that concern you most.

ELIMINATE YOUR FEARS

Comfort-Zone
Do you like to play it safe? Taking the path of least resistance is a choice many people take. People feel that avoiding risk safe because you won’t lose anything. But doing so may cause you to lose a great opportunity, then you lose your competitive edge or your business. Personal or professional progress only happens outside your comfort zone. Risk! No Risk no Gain! Even worse, possible loss. There is risk of acting but there is also risk of inaction. Being fearful of acting may be much riskier that taking that action. How many times have you said, I should have, I could have, I would have? I recently coached a Westchester County NY business executive. She wanted to advance in her career, but she was playing it safe and waiting for the right time. What could she lose by playing it safe? She could lose a great opportunity. So...
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IN PERSON, VIRTUAL, OR HYBRID?

Delivering-a-Message
A successful business must take advantage of the new technology. For most leaders this means that change will be necessary. Some leaders have embraced the changes and created their own new organization. This is the most desirable approach to change—embrace it and get in front of it. Others are still waiting, and they may become disappointed when they learn that things will never be as they were before. When crisis has happened in the past, we have come out of it stronger, but we did not go back to the way things were before. We won’t be going back to the way things were this time either. In adapting we have learned better ways to get work done. Virtual teams which have been around for a while will take a more prominent role. There will also be new hybrids of in person combined with virtual. Technology has shown us the way....
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BEFORE YOU ASSUME YOU KNOW THE PROBLEM FIND THE ROOT CAUSE

Body-Language-in-Message
It is certainly easy to say that you know today’s problem. There is no denying that the last two years have provided challenges. Don’t just make the mistake of thinking once the country returns to “normal” we will be fine. Smart employers are starting to ask questions and look for root causes. The problem of the great resignation and the search for talent is real. Is it just because of the pandemic or has the last two years cause some paradigm shifts? What you are seeing are symptoms and they are real problems. You want to remove the problem or, at least, move forward in spite of the problem. You can’t take a knee jerk reaction and treat the symptoms. It is important to look at the whole picture rather than make a reactive fix. It would be a mistake to treat the symptoms rather than cure the disease. Many reactive...
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HOW ARE YOU AND YOUR TEAM HANDLING CHANGE?

Time-Passes
In the last week I have seen several surveys including one from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). They are asking business leaders how their organization is handling change. In the beginning of the Pandemic, I wrote about a case for change now. At that time many were in denial or just wanted to wait. They just needed to get through the traumatic times. Change and traumatic times might be here to stay. Now I am not referring to Covid-19 but I am simply saying that if you are going to wait until things (whatever they are) blow over you and your business are positioned to fail. Why do people resist change? Why to people want to wait and see when the threat in front of them demands action? Understanding the reasons people resist change can help overcome the obstacles to change and create real progress. Here are some reasons...
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WHEN CAN WE GO BACK TO NORMAL? MAYBE NEVER.

Comfort-Zone
It has been over a year and a half? Business have found new ways to engage employees and customers. However, among all of these changes we hear, “When can we get back to normal?” The answer is, “Maybe never.” Let’s face it … we have always lived in a changing world. EVERYTHING changes and we can adapt to the changes. Or we can get out in front and be the change. But first we have to realize that change is never easy. One of the key reasons change might come hard has a lot to do with one of the tools your brain uses regularly. This tool helps you get through your days with the speed and accuracy you need without getting bogged down with minutia. This tool is called habit. Think about this for a minute. How many daily activities do you do without thinking about them? Let’s take your...
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HOW ARE YOU GETTING BUY IN FOR CHANGE?

Change-Management
This year has forced some changes. Change can be good if you get in front of change and lead the change. There are basically three ways to react to change, be excited and look for the opportunity, just accept it and go with it, or resist. I would encourage you as business leader to look for the opportunity. Now the question remains, “How do I communicate the changes to my staff and how do I get their buy in?” Very quickly I would tell you to use the group that is excited about change to be your promoters and your trainers. For the neutral members you will need sell the benefits. Now for the resisters you will need to make them feel more comfortable to the extent that you can. Often senior executives genuinely believe they are communicating with employees when it comes to matters that affect them. Unfortunately, they often...
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ARE HARMFUL HABITS HOLDING YOU BACK?

Erase-Bad-Habits
A great opportunity now exists to break some bad habits. I know in my own case just the shutdown eliminated a bad habit. It is now been quite a while and now the new successful habit has replaced it for good. Our success or failure is driven by our habits. A bad habit can cause us to continue to do things that are non-productive or destructive. For example, you might have a habit of laying back and taking it easy. The result could be panic when you are up against a deadline. The result could be failure to meet the deadline or failure to achieve good results. All of this is the result of living in a comfort zone. That comfort zone exists for us because we are deriving satisfaction for our current habits. As an example, many people have trouble sticking to a diet because it is more comfortable to...
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ENTREPRENEURSHIP – FAILURE AND SETBACKS ARE TEMPORARY

Entrepreneur
Many great entrepreneurs have something in common. At one point they failed in business but then they later became smashing successes.   Some of these entrepreneurs include Henry Ford, Walt Disney, Mary Kay, Bill Gates, and Richard Branson. The difference between these entrepreneurs and other business failures is that these individuals learned from their failures and used those lessons to build successful enterprises. Education is a short cut to experience. Our present crisis reminds us of the risks of entrepreneurship. But an entrepreneur understands the risks. Failures occur and unexpected events do happen. How the entrepreneur reacts to these setbacks will determine future outcomes. Several years ago, three of my colleagues and I shared some lessons learned from the front. You can avoid some of the mistakes which will lead to failure by taking note. Q.When you develop a business plan why do you put it aside and forget it. A. Many...
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A CASE FOR CHANGE NOW

Change-Management
Challenges as we have seen in current days should make a strong case for change. Normally, many people resist change because they are in a comfort zone. However, challenging events such as the Coronavirus are forcing us to make changes. I was speaking to a business owner today who understands her numbers and where the business stands. She has strategic plans ready to be implemented based on a number of things that might happen in the upcoming months. Then I have also spoken to a business owner who says it is too early to think about contingent plans because people are in the midst of traumatic times. Some say she is in denial or still processing. Why do people resist change? Why to people want to wait and see when the threat in front of them demands action? Understanding the reasons people resist change can help overcome the obstacles to change...
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WHAT OPPORTUNITIES DO YOU SEE FOR NEXT YEAR?

Mountaintop
A new year and a new decade is just around the corner. How is 2019? Are you finishing strong? Are there things that should change next year? Who should be working on their goals and plan for 2020? Maybe you have everything working perfectly and will continue doing what you are doing. If you see some opportunities why not review what is working and what isn’t working. I am currently working with businesses and executives in Westchester County New York on their annual goals review. Setting a goal is not like a New Year's resolution. That is just a wish. Just wishing and hoping for something isn't going to make it happen. Setting a goal is having a target to shoot for and a plan to get there. When planning your goals, choose which categories you would like for your goals. Establish the time frame. They could be lifetime goals, 10...
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WHO REALLY LIKES TO CHANGE?

Change-Management
Although leaders will agree that change is necessary, they may need to become more aware of how they themselves need to change. If they want people to take ownership and initiative, then they must relinquish some degree of control. What we did to get to where we are today will not get us where you want to go tomorrow.   Who are our customers and what business are we in? If we want to continue hold onto our customers and market share, we must adapt to changing times. And if we want to move forward, we need to anticipate and get ahead of change. Why do people resist change? Why do people continue to do the same things although they are no longer getting the results they once achieved? Understanding the reasons people resist change can help overcome the obstacles to change and create real progress. So here are four reasons why...
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ROLL OUT CHANGE VERY CAREFULLY

Nonverbal-Communication
Although no one likes to change it is often necessary. That doesn’t make it any easier to accept. But it is important to communicate change and the reasons behind it very carefully. Without proper attention to the communication details the outcomes can be disastrous. I recently met with the leaders of one of my Westchester County New York organizations to present results of an employee survey. The employees felt that there had been very many changes, but they also felt that management was not keeping them informed. Productivity almost always suffers in times of great change because employee stress dramatically increases due to the universal fear of the unknown. Often senior executives genuinely believe they are communicating with employees when it comes to matters that affect them. Unfortunately, they often underestimate the number of matters that includes. Can you say with certainty that you know what is important to employees and...
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THE NATURE OF CHANGE

THE NATURE OF CHANGE
Have you thought about how fast change is happening? Change is constant and a person who can manage or get in front of change will survive and thrive. The nature of change was brought home to me as I was reading account of how current business owners had spent the last 10 years. There were drastic differences within just the last 10 years. If these business owners did not make the changes, they made they might be out of business. The expression “If it’s not broke don’t fix it” could more appropriately be stated “If it is not broken yet it soon will be.” You can wait for change to force you to do something and then react. But that is not the best option. The best option is to predict and get in front of change. These are some of the things you should you should be doing proactively: 1.       ...
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HANDLE CHANGE ON YOUR TERMS

HANDLE CHANGE ON YOUR TERMS
Change is inevitable. You can’t decide not to participate. It is happening won’t remain the same. Instead you will lose ground and move backward. As the earth moves everything changes. Cars change, technology changes, and business practices change. What you did to get to where you are today will not get you to where you want to go tomorrow.   If you want to continue hold onto your customers and market share you must adapt to changing times. And if you want to move forward you need to anticipate and get ahead of change. Why do people resist change? Why do people continue to do the same things although they are no longer getting the results they once achieved? If we understand why we resist change, we can overcome the obstacles that are holding us back. If we overcome obstacles to change, we can make progress even to the point of getting...
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STILL NOT READY TO CHANGE?

STILL NOT READY TO CHANGE?
Do you feel that you are hamster spinning on a wheel not knowing how to get off? The explanation might lie in the fact that we are by nature creatures of habit. These habits create a rut and that rut becomes the path of least resistance. Organizations and businesses are no different than people. A business gets stuck too. But by continuing to go with the flow we will decline. Let’s face it … we live in a changing world. EVERYTHING changes and it’s time to acknowledge the cold, hard truth. That is, much as we’d like to, we cannot control everything that happens to us in life. We can, however, change the way we react to what happens. One of the key reasons change might come hard has a lot to do with one of the tools your brain uses regularly. This tool helps you get through your days with...
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WHY LEAVE THE SAFETY OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE?

WHY LEAVE THE SAFETY OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE?
Why would anyone want to leave a comfortable place? One reason would be that someone wants more. The question is what we are willing to spend to have more. The amount we are willing to spend is the risk we are willing to take.   When you take that risk and step out of your comfort zone you begin to see real progress. Recently, a Westchester County NY business executive told me that he wants to advance in his career. He has been working hard but playing it safe and wondering when he is going to get his “turn.” Why does he feel he has to get a turn? Why doesn’t he just seize it? Another way to describe this thought process is what I would call “Getting ready to go to work”. For example, “I still don’t have my resume, my presentation, or my 2 sharpened number 2 pencils”—you get the...
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IF CHANGE IS CONSTANT WHY IS THERE SO MUCH RESISTANCE

IF CHANGE IS CONSTANT WHY IS THERE SO MUCH RESISTANCE
Although things are always changing many of us say we hate change. We know we must change but we don’t like doing it. We are creatures of habit and we will explore that thought later. We also have heard that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over but expecting a different result. We must face it … we live in a changing world. EVERYTHING changes and it’s time to acknowledge the cold, hard truth … much as we’d like to, we cannot control everything that happens to us in life. We can, however, change the way we react to what happens. One of the key reasons change might come hard has a lot to do with one of the tools your brain uses regularly. This tool helps you get through your days with the speed and accuracy you need without getting bogged down with minutia. This...
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TAKE YOUR BUSINESS TO THE NEXT LEVEL IN 2018

TAKE YOUR BUSINESS TO THE NEXT LEVEL IN 2018
Are you ready to take your Westchester County NY business to the next level? Most businesses say yes but do not know what that means.  First, you need to know where your business is now. Then you can see where you want to go.  Businesses like people go through growth stages and many drop off along the way.    Some businesses may survive due to external dynamics and then become stagnant.  The root cause could be a lack of entrepreneurial leadership. For example:  There are numerous great cooks and chefs that feel that because they understand how to create a great meal that, therefore, they would be a natural to open a restaurant.  They open the business and make sales. However, the owner is usually consumed with running the business and catering to every little detail.  There is very little time to step away from the day to day operation.  In most...
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GET WAY OUT IN FRONT OF CHANGE OR YOU WILL GET RUN OVER

GET WAY OUT IN FRONT OF CHANGE OR YOU WILL GET RUN OVER
Change really is so difficult. You must change or you will not survive. Let me illustrate the importance of change with story of a once great US company. Recently, I did a throwback blog with a photograph of a landmark. The picture here is of the World Trade Center Towers under construction in May 1970. It was taken with a good 35mm camera. However, the picture deteriorated over time because it was not Kodak film. Anyone who has done photography for years knows that Kodak was the gold standard of pictures. And if your Kodak film was also processed by Kodak you had the best quality picture. You really could tell the difference. Yes, Kodak was branded as a superior image because of high quality film, chemicals and processing quality control. In the 1980’s someone at Kodak invented a prototype of a digital camera but Kodak did not want to develop...
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WHY IS CHANGE SO DIFFICULT?

WHY IS CHANGE SO DIFFICULT?
If you want to get to the next point in your life you can’t continue doing the things that got you to where you are today. If we believe that statement then why do we keep doing the same things and expecting a different result? According to Einstein that is the definition of insanity. We have to face it … we live in a changing world. EVERYTHING changes and it’s time to acknowledge the cold, hard truth … much as we’d like to, we cannot control everything that happens to us in life. We can, however, change the way we react to what happens. One of the key reasons change might come hard has a lot to do with one of the tools your brain uses regularly. This tool helps you get through your days with the speed and accuracy you need without getting bogged down with minutia. This tool is...
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