Do you often dream of a more focused and enthusiastic team?
Author, Dan Miller provides some great suggestions on how you might help develop a clear focus in his book 48 Days To The Work You Love that could be applied to team environments. In summary, he says that visualizing, defining, destination, future and success in all areas of life all play a key role in building confidence, boldness, and enthusiasm.
What does this look like in a real work environment?
I am so excited on June 17th Finding Dory is coming out. Finding Nemo is one of my favorite Disney® movies and now there will be one with Dory as the lead. This is going to be awesome!
Well maybe you are not as excited but when I think of Dory I think of me. She is hyper. She loves to help others. She always seems a bit overwhelmed but doesn’t really think she is. She is scatterbrained. She tends to be a BIT loud. And most like me, she has a LITTLE bit of a memory issue.
Yet in all that busyness her motto is “Just Keep Swimming”. I have taken on this motto for years and it truly keeps me going.
Dory is such a perfect match for my personality that once while on a road trip…
This week has been rough. My son had that lovely bug going around where your temperature reaches “scare the crap out of mom” heights. Being that we just went through this last week with my husband I knew it had to run its course but that didn’t ease my mind as I looked at a 103 temperature at 6 am. Then as I reread my post one last time my daughter begins her fight with the stomach bug. Let round three of sickness begin.
During these times, we are mommy heroes. We run down to get the cold rag. We are overly checking their heads every 15 minutes. We are willing to cook for them, feed them and do pretty much anything to make them feel better. Oddly enough we don’t tend to see ourselves as heroes until someone points out that you are the most important superhero in your child’s life.
This past Sunday I had the privilege of helping watch toddlers while parents attended a class at church. My son was sick, my husband was holding the superhero fort down and I was putting on my other hat.
While playing with the kids I asked a boy what his superhero name would be. He responded with Incredible Hulk. Then on to the next kid and she said her own name. Then next up a child who combined her name with a strength of jumping like a kangaroo. Then the last one I asked picked a totally unrelated name to theirs and also not a known superhero.
I pondered this later and wondered what each child might feel as they answered that question or how I might interrupt the responses.
Incredible Hulk=learn from others what it means to be a superhero.
Actual Name=I know I am wonderfully made by God and I am a superhero.
Actual Name + Strength=Talents and strengths combined with being wonderfully made by God makes me a superhero.
New Name=There is more out there to discover in me that no celebrity superhero or strength will teach. Only God knows the purpose and the direction of my superhero journey.
We all are superheroes. We all utilize different parts of our superhero abilities depending on the situation at the moment. A while back I wrote a post on having first impressions as a superhero power. Having this ability can help immensely with teamwork dynamic. It can also help out when you are trying to evaluate your children’s friend selections. Although you can’t rely on this 100%, if this is your skill put on your cape and wear it proudly. You may have the ability to see small changes in others. You may have the ability to build. You may have the ability to lead. You may have the ability to protect. There is a superhero in all of us.
What is your superhero name? What talent or strength do you have that could help others? And just for fun did you find the superhero word that was left unbolded or any others I missed?
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Today I am going to begin a monthly post to ask questions to all of you beautiful people out there. Yes, you I am not out here on my own writing to myself so one day I will return and answer myself, but that might be interesting to do in the future. I wonder how my future self would give advice to my old self. I digress, as usual.
So let’s get to the questions.
What do you do each week to try and build into your strengths?
What have you reflected on or been reminded by someone else that you don’t do so well and you thought it was a strength?
As Marcus Buckingham says, how can you start to “tilt the floor towards your strengths” to be the best you?
We all dream of it. We all save for it. We all think it will never happen and then it finally does. We get to take that dream vacation we have always wanted with time away to relax and enjoy the sun and surroundings.
For our 15th anniversary my husband and I went to Jamaica and wow what an experience! The food was amazing, the people were spectacular and the scenery was out of this world. But one thing you don’t expect or think about is the impact experiencing their culture will have on you. Of course we have heard others say get out there and explore the world and enjoy the culture but until it happens, you don’t really get it.
What experiencing Jamaica has taught me and how it might help with your teams or ones you are a part of.
The rain had managed to sneak its way into the sand box just enough to make it perfect for building castles. I sat there working so hard to build up tall hills of sand with my daughter only to have her laugh at me when she stomped on them like King Kong. If I have to admit it, I became frustrated over time internally. Why couldn’t she just let us finish?
Then I stopped and thought there is a great lesson here. You put all of your effort into something time and time again, only to have others tear it down. This time I will wipe my hands off in time to take her smiling face in front of the beautiful sand hills we have made together. Determination!
Quotes like this tend to make me stop and reach for an index card, thank you Jon Acoff for that tip. How often do we judge our children’s grades by the subject they do the worst in? How often do we think employees are not doing well at work because they can’t complete certain tasks as well as others? We often believe everyone should know what we know and do what we do but do we ever stop to think about what we can’t do that they can. Each person has talents and personalities that are unique.
Picture this for example. While strolling through the park one day a group of us encountered a young child barely walking across a small bridge. She was alone. As parents we all looked around for where her parent could be and then when no one was to be found we helped her back over and went on looking. We never left her side until the mother was located. I could write an entire other post on how NOT appreciative the mother was but we will be nice and stop there.
Then of course there was my favorite older woman that I encountered while at a family event. She stood up and yelled at me while I was talking with my family and said I need you to be quiet, maybe quiet was not the word, because she couldn’t hear the BINGO numbers being called on the other side of the room.
Each of these examples represents two very different types of people. Stop and think do you need both kinds on a team? Do you need some nurturers and some very verbally honest people? Most of us would say yes within reason. You need to utilize both of their strengths and if at all possible not ask them to play reverse roles because most likely they will fail or become defeated over time.
We live in an improving upon our “areas of opportunity” versus a “building on our strengths” kind of world. Listing to a Marcus Buckingham Catalyst speech from 2006 really spoke this message even louder than usual to me. This concept seems simple yet in real life we rarely carry it out. When someone doesn’t understand something after a million times of explaining it we think what is wrong with this person. When our children don’t do well in a subject we tend to put all our effort into helping them with this subject. These routines tend to carry over into our work life.
So what can we all do about it? Challenge your thinking. Before you think why in the world is this person not figuring it out, think what can they do well and how can I utilize it. Break your goals and tasks up according to people’s strengths. A collective team working on things they enjoy and are good at is much better than a team who prays for 5 p.m. to come along. Will this work all the time, of course not but it sure will help build a better team than the one you might have now. It also will help others see you as a respected and trusted manager.
My challenge for you is to start looking at things a little differently on the teams you work in. You can even do a few of these in your home life but I might stay away from number 5 with your family and friends. They may think you are a little odd if you suggest this one.
Start by asking what they enjoy or what they think their strengths are.
Ask them what they don’t really enjoy doing or what they are not the best at.
Build into their strengths and spend a lot less time on their “areas for opportunity”.