Silence: Shut Your Pie Hole

Last week Daxko was really quiet.  Really quiet.  A good chunk of our top performing team members were attending our annual Achievers Club….in St. Thomas.  Others were attending out-of-town conferences.  As you can imagine the energy in a growing software company is really kinetic so last week the stark silence was really noticeable.

And I got more work done last week than I have since I started here. It was wonderful.

Don’t get me wrong.  I am a talker, a loud one at that.  I contribute to the usual noise.  And an energetic environment can spark so many wonderful things. But this week of silence has been inspiring.  My creativity has increased, my output has increased and funny enough my energy has increased.

So, shut up for a while. Channel your inner Silent Bob; Channel your inner Shy Ronnie.  And you don’t have to change your kinetic culture as you zip it.  Tips:

  • Hide.  You can do that every now and then.
  • Find a quite space in your office and for 3 hours a day work there. Or work there all day.
  • Work from home.
  • Tell people to keep the noise down (if it is appropriate).
  • Workout…like at a gym.  It quiets your mind.
  • Gets noise-cancelling headphones.
  • Literally put on your outlook “I am in the office but am doing heads-down work today.  I’ll return your emails tomorrow”.

Or if you need a little noise to keep it going….a little music goes a long way.  Check this out for some stats and tips on music and productivity.

Saying Sorry: Only For The Wimpy Leader

Really?  Do leaders who apologize for their mistakes become the Charlie Brown of the office?  Do jerkies make better leaders?  The Harvard Biz Journal reported last year that it is likely true.  They asked,

“Can you have respect and power? We (the HBJ) found that it’s hard to gain both”.

In addition they said, “Decisions about high-level promotions most often center on perceptions of power, not of fairness”.

Maybe so.  I was given some feedback from an ex-employee of mine.  In this constructive criticism he/she told me that at times when I would make a quick reactive decision it could come across as over-reactive.  I know you are shocked.

There is truth to this.  As with every human being, amidst a wealth of great qualities lurks some not-so-great ones. This is a not-so-great one I am aware of and work on.  Since this is something I am aware of, 98% of the time I’m in control of this.  2% of the time my instinct takes over and I slip.  When this 2% hits, after I think about it for the while, realize I spoke too soon and fall on my sword…

And I apologize. I typically think this is the right and fair thing to do.   

So get this.  I got the drift from the feedback that this apology made me look weaker in the eyes of the recipient than if I did not apologize.  By focusing more attention to the issue through the apology, I may have shot myself in the foot on the respect thing. The apology may have even appeared to make me look guilty of something.  At least that is how the feedback came across to me.  The scales tipped me over into the realm of Charlie Brown-ness.

So I thought about it. 

  • I have decided I will continue to apologize if I do something wrong.  It is simply the right thing to do. 
  • I will not over-apologize for little things.   Take the good with the bad.
  • I will get out of the habit of automatically saying “I’m sorry” for every little thing.  Sometimes it is an automatic response.  This is similar to when asked “how are you doing?, and you automatically say “GREAT!”
  • I’ll forgo a promotion granted me by being a jerk.  I’ll let someone else be the jerk. 
  • Trust is built if leaders admit faults.  Building trust builds engagement.  Engagement leads to organizational success.  I’m happy admitting faults.

Disclaimer:  This is how I perceived the feedback.  It doesn’t mean this was their intent (which is a whole other blogpost).  I really want and need this kind of feedback.  But good food for thought anyway.

Saying Sorry: Only For The Wimpy Leader

Really?  Do leaders who apologize for their mistakes become the Charlie Brown of the office?  Do jerkies make better leaders?  The Harvard Biz Journal reported last year that it is likely true.  They asked,

“Can you have respect and power? We (the HBJ) found that it’s hard to gain both”.

In addition they said, “Decisions about high-level promotions most often center on perceptions of power, not of fairness”.

Maybe so.  I was given some feedback from an ex-employee of mine.  In this constructive criticism he/she told me that at times when I would make a quick reactive decision it could come across as over-reactive.  I know you are shocked.

There is truth to this.  As with every human being, amidst a wealth of great qualities lurks some not-so-great ones. This is a not-so-great one I am aware of and work on.  Since this is something I am aware of, 98% of the time I’m in control of this.  2% of the time my instinct takes over and I slip.  When this 2% hits, after I think about it for the while, I realize I spoke too soon and fall on my sword…

And I apologize. I typically think this is the right and fair thing to do.   

So get this.  I got the drift from the feedback that this apology made me look weaker in the eyes of the recipient than if I did not apologize.  By focusing more attention to the issue through the apology, I may have shot myself in the foot on the respect thing. The apology may have even appeared to make me look guilty of something.  At least that is how the feedback came across to me.  The scales tipped me over into the realm of Charlie Brown-ness.

So I thought about it. 

  • I have decided I will continue to apologize if I do something wrong.  It is simply the right thing to do. 
  • I will not over-apologize for little things.   Take the good with the bad.
  • I will get out of the habit of automatically saying “I’m sorry” for every little thing.  Sometimes it is an automatic response.  This is similar to when asked “how are you doing?, and you automatically say “GREAT!”
  • I’ll forgo a promotion granted me by being a jerk.  I’ll let someone else be the jerk. 
  • Trust is built if leaders admit faults.  Building trust builds engagement.  Engagement leads to organizational success.  I’m happy admitting faults.

Disclaimer:  This is how I perceived the feedback.  It doesn’t mean this was their intent (which is a whole other blogpost).  I really want and need this kind of feedback.  But good food for thought anyway.

Don’t Let your HR Videos Be Crap-tastic: Watch FOT Webinar

Don’t we all love a viral video.  I cannot get enough of Tosh.0. Rednecks falling off rope swings gets me going every time. However…..

HR folks using crap video to learn about employment practices is just as painful as “Boom Goes The Dynamite”.  Click here if you haven’t seen this crap-tastic and wrenching vid.

Never fear, FOTers Tim Sackett and Kris Dunn are gonna teach us all how to channel our Cecil B. DeMille and use videos to enhance our HR nation. 

Register now for The Future of Talent: 5 Ways to Use Video to Raise Your HR and Recruiting Game. Join us for this webinar, and we’ll give you the 411 for how to think about video within your HR or recruiting practice and a road map to get started in the following areas:

  • Employment Branding
  • Recruiting
  • Role Play for Mangers
  • Training Shorts Delivered via Mobile
  • A “How To” Guide to Get Started with Video in Your HR/Recruiting Organization

This webinar comes with the Fistful of Talent guarantee:  60% of the time, it works every time.  Join the FOT crew as they break down the video scene and brainstorm about the best way to build video chops in your HR or recruiting practice.

Direct Register: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/453672134

Extended trailer: http://fistfuloftalent.com/2012/04/fot-may-webinar-5-ways-to-use-video-to-raise-your-hr-and-recruiting-game.html

The CYA Report: The HR Podcast Where Sore Butts Are Cool!

ImageCYA Report #13 coming at you…

Wanna learn why Kris Dunn’s butt hurts?  Wanna know why Garden Gnomes and NyQuill are a bad mix for me?  You wanna hear my say “warsh” instead of “wash”? Oh… and you wanna learn some HR jazz?  You’ve gotta plug into Fistful of Talent’s/ Workforce online’s “The CYA Report”. (Lucky episode 13 by the way).

I am a co-host of this super fab podcast and I have done a TERRIBLE job promoting it.  I’ve got to shout the praises of “The CYA Report”. Shout it…shout it…shout it out loud.  Yes.

Workforce Online has given the green light to Kris Dunn, Tim Sackett, Holland Dombeck, and Moi to ramble, pontificate, fight, pout, and give some good luvin’ to the HR profession. 

Plug in to hear:

  • Kris and I ramble!
  • Current HR news snippets where me and Tim Sackett disagree!
  • Elocution lessons from Holland Dombeck (CYA’s news anchorman)
  • Great interviews with HR knowledge leaders, Tech gurus, and HR product specialists. 

What I learned this week:

  • Wow…I sound like I was born in a place where people where seer-sucker suits, little ribbon ties, and drink mint juleps.  I was born in Cleveland, OH and have been under the delusion that I sound like a Yankee in Birmingham.  Wrong.  I’ve been in the south 20+ years and am now married to a guy named Bo.  Not Beau.  BO- like Bo and Luke Duke.  So now I know why I say “warsh” instead of “wash”. I must say though he is not a redneck…lovely attorney actually.
  • I can leave work at 5:30!
  • Ultimate Software has a succession planning program.  Who knew?
  • Oh, and Kris Dunn’s butt is sore.  

Mash here to hear the latest fistful podcast!

http://fistfuloftalent.com/2012/05/the-cya-report-episode-13-succession-planning-podcast.html