Have you or your team reached your full potential yet?

It’s easy to talk about reaching your potential. However, does anyone really have a roadmap, or is there actually one that exists to help you or your team achieve its maximum potential? Or, once you reach your or a team’s potential, is it possible to maintain this potential?

These are all really difficult and profound questions to consider, let alone answer. In terms of having a roadmap, yes, it is possible to have one, especially if you intend to get to where you desire to be. Potential can be a subjective concept, and depending on what you are measuring, your measurement criteria may or may not be accurate.

Some potential is more elusive and difficult to quantify. For example, people who are considered friendly and able to converse with anyone may have potential to have a career in sales. For those of you in sales, you know there are varying degrees of being a good conversationalist, and it might not have anything to do with being friendly. So, if you were in a position to judge someone’s potential about whether they would be successful in sales, you would likely need to factor in other criteria to help you.

Measuring potential is not a single dimension exercise. When you factor in assessing more than one person’s potential and are asked to determine an entire team’s collective potential, this becomes much more challenging to do. However, I have found it is possible to do this type of measurement. In addition to leveraging the Gallup StrengthsFinder Survey to determine each team members Top 5 strengths, there are a number of other criteria I overlay to help me.

Here are some of the criteria I apply to help me determine both an individual, as well as a team’s success potential.

  • You need to assess the motivation level of each person on the team. This can be achieved by asking them a series of questions which will reveal what their current motivation level is, and what level they have the capacity to get to.
  • Different from assessing someone’s motivation level, is determining what motivates them. You might be surprised by the variety of answers, and they are not all driven by tangible things you might expect to hear them tell you.
  • Each person has a different definition of what success means. When you find out what theirs is, it can provide clear insight into what their potential level is.
  • Find out what the team leader is doing to serve as a role model to help inspire and motivate their team to reach each of their potentials, as well as for the collective team potential.
  • Asking someone to visualize and then describe their vision of reaching their potential isn’t something most people are asked, especially in the workplace. This is more commonly asked in the sports team industry. However, it is a powerful method for both the individual as well as their leader to have insight into how the person perceives what their potential can look like.

There are numerous other methods I apply when I am helping leaders and teams help to assess people’s potential. All of the suggestions above can be applied to any industry, profession or career level.

In terms of addressing whether it is possible to sustain potential, my take on this is that it tends to vary. However, a high level of potential can be both achieved and maintained given the right circumstances to foster and nurture an individual or team’s potential. Consider whether you are a guardian of others potential, or detracting from it.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whispererand is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

 

 

Hope. Sometimes it’s all you need.

Upon doing some research on the concept of hope, I surprisingly found a limited amount of data on this topic. There was a significant amount of research on optimism, and hope and optimism could in fact be strongly linked to one another. However, they are in fact different. Part of the reason for this is because it has been harder for both sociologists and psychologists to do research on hope as a stand-alone concept. Additionally, it is hard to qualitatively and quantatively measure.

In the context of a business scenario, whenever I heard the expression that hope is not a strategy, I always disagreed with this statement. Why? Because although strategy is grounded in looking ahead and formulating a plan of how to move ahead and grow, in my opinion, and from my experience, the basic concept of hope is also formulated and can be applied in a similar way.

Having a strategy does not necessarily provide you with energy and enthusiasm. It can provide you with a focus and direction. However, this needs to be supported by energy which can be derived from being hopeful the strategy is a sound and strong one. One of course, with the desire to provide a positive outcome.

Possessing the right experience is also part of the equation when we are talking about strategy. However, hope still plays a factor in your strategy, because you need people to buy into the concept of the strategy. Analytical data will be required to support your strategic plan, but you still need people to believe, and buy into your concept. Hence, being hopeful they will.

One of my past articles talks about having a positive attitude, and asks you to consider altering your thinking and imagining that everything will work out well . Yes, in my opinion positive thinking is involved in having hope. Some others might call this faith. However, I’m not going to get into the aspects of faith, as it can be interpreted in so many different ways.

When I think of having hope towards a situation working out favorably, I literally feel like my brain chemistry changes. I also am aware that my attitude frees up my brain to focus my mind differently. In a much more creative and insightful way. An example of this would be the concept of brainstorming. Brainstorming in the sense of being challenged with a scenario, and having to come up with solutions for how to solve the situation.

Let’s consider some ways you can apply being hopeful to any situation. Perhaps one you are facing which might be considered negative, or less than desirable.

  • If you are on a sports team, and your team is losing the game, when you and the rest of your team are hopeful your team can win, you will notice a dramatic shift if everyone rally’s behind the belief this can happen.
  • Let’s say you are a salesperson, and you are not making your number for the month. Having hope and thinking both strategically and positively, versus giving up and accepting you will not meet your number for the month requires a healthy dose of hope.
  • When you are faced with hearing bad news of any kind, you have a choice. You can accept the bad news and wallow in it, or have hope that the bad news might in fact be the catalyst to have you consider different approaches to altering the outcome of the news.
  • Asking others to be hopeful for you may not seem practical or something you would consider. However, when you surround yourself with more positive thinking people, it can have a dramatic impact on your situation. I’ve seen this happen hundreds of times.
  • Life is a journey, and is hard if not impossible to predict all of your life and business outcomes with 100% certainty. However, you can be more hopeful with your attitude, which takes less energy than being negative about future outcomes.

Since there is no such thing as a crystal ball to predict our futures, my point about considering hope as part of your life or business strategy, is to get you to think about a concept which you might not be comfortable with. The flip side is that hope may in fact provide you with the positive outcomes you would want to achieve. Having hope is a choice, and a fairly easy one to embrace. My hope is that you give this concept some further thought.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whispererand is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

Don’t fire them. Nope. Fire them up!

In 1994 Frank Pacetta wrote a book called ‘Don’t Fire them. Fire them up!”. I heard about this book recently. Although in full disclosure, I have only read the first two pages to get the gist and context of what was going to be conveyed. To my delight, the book was about motivating yourself and your team!

Since I often write about teams and motivation, knowing this small amount of information was enough for me. However, the thought of retaining an employee that others might fire seemed a bit controversial. Perhaps unconventional, but it got me thinking about the scores of people I have seen fired, instead of Frank’s concept of firing them up.

If you are a Human Resources professional, or manager, you are likely cringing at the thought of retaining someone that many think should be fired. Most HR pros are also accustomed to having to go through strict procedures prior to releasing someone from their team. All to essentially cover the company’s posterior, since the US has become highly litigious about this sort of thing.

Back to the concept of firing someone up. What if instead of firing people, management figured out how to motivate them? Perhaps they are not motivated because of who they work for? Or, possibly they are in the wrong role? Maybe it has to do with your company culture?

Possibly it’s the person, and they are simply not motivated.

Deep down inside, most people are motivated, but they sometimes need someone to help them to figure out what motivates them. When this happens, look out! Why? Because you might not recognize this newly motivated individual, and I guarantee you will be thrilled with their new attitude.

I can’t tell you how many people I have had conversations with who have told me they are in their current role because someone else told them it was a great occupation. Uggh. Wrong reason. This is also potentially the culprit for why so many people need to be fired up, or realigned with another role. Have you been there? Or, do you have someone on your team who falls into this category?

When someone is hired at a company, they each are making an investment in one another to be successful. As we know, not all investments pan out the way we want them too. However, with people, there is more you can do to position the investment for a favorable return. It can literally start with properly on-boarding them in their role. Doing this helps to literally inspire them to want to work at your company. Although I realize this might be a stretch in some roles.

If you properly on-board someone in their role, both parties will more rapidly know if the position is the right one for them. When this happens, if the person is not right for the role, this is when the “firing them up” concept can kick in. Instead of referring to it as “firing them up”, let’s think about it as a realignment of talent.

Depending on the size of your company, you may or may not be in a position to realign talent. Although if you are able to do so, both parties will typically benefit from this. Not always, but instead of dismissing a person from your company, consider taking another look at the talents they have to offer the company in a different role.

Doing this can be highly motivating for the person who was realigned, and their new manager and the different team they are on will also benefit from their positive energy of starting a new role. Are you willing to give this concept of firing someone up a chance? I hope so, as you might be pleasantly surprised with retaining versus letting someone go. Just think, they might instead be on a track to inspire others, and be a role model employee!

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whispererand is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

 

Are you a responsible leader?

If you were to ask the majority of leaders if they felt prepared for the role they are in, the answers you would receive might not be what you would expect to hear. In fact, statistically most leaders are under or not well prepared for assuming the leadership role they are in. So how does this happen?

Perhaps you have heard of “The Peter Principle”? If not, it’s basically the concept that many leaders in organizations keep getting promoted until they reach a level of respective incompetence. This isn’t exactly reassuring when you look around and wonder if perhaps the leader of your organization fits this description. Worse, is when this might in fact be you, and you know you are in a role well beyond your capabilities.

When you consider the experience leaders are expected to have prior to stepping into their respective role, you would expect them to have been vetted along the way. For starters, being proficient and capable of assuming this role. However, this is a gross assumption. It is also one of the ways people who become leaders, and who are weak ones end up in a leadership role. The problem is partially with the lack of checks and balances of the leadership vetting system.

Another challenge which allows weak or ill prepared leaders to step into their roles, is the fact there are too many “yes” people in organizations. If you are not familiar with “yes” people, chances are you might be one. In other words, it is far easier for people to agree and say “yes” to a leader, than it is to disagree.

When someone does not agree with a leader, and they are not trusted and respected by the leader, they run the risk of being labeled contentious or difficult. Although in reality, strong leaders would want more people to say “no” or not agree with everything.

So, what can be done to prepare leaders to be ones we look up to, are motivated by and respect? Here are some suggestions to get you started.

  • You probably have heard of an intervention. The ones typically associated with someone who has a severe problem and a group of people gather together to support getting the person with the problem help. The same concept can apply to weak leaders, and should be organized with the support of the head of human resources. If it is a small company, the second person in command of the company, along with the majority of the upper management team should be involved. I highly recommend you consult also with an outside and neutral party experienced in this type of intervention.
  • In less dramatic situations, assigning someone to open the dialogue with the leader about how they view their leadership style is a strong place to start. Often, the leader is unaware others perceive their leadership capabilities and style in a less than desirable manner.
  • Don’t assume your leader has had recent or relevant training to help support their role.
  • Leadership training is something which should be ongoing throughout their career.
  • If your leader has not taken leadership training in the last 6-12 months, it’s time for them to take a course. This can be monitored by the head of HR, or if you are the leader, make sure you have recently taken a leadership course.
  • If you are a leader, consider joining a group of CEO’s to help support your leadership evolution. There are a number of these groups throughout the country, and chances are you might have one in your city. If not, there are virtual CEO “round table” groups you can consider joining.
  • Determine what type of strengths the leader relies upon the most. This can be done with the assistance of a number of different and objective testing methods. Being a Gallup Certified Strengths Coach, I can highly recommend the StrengthsFinder survey which can determine what their top (5) strengths are. I have leveraged the results of this survey to help numerous leaders, as well as the people and the teams who support them. I guarantee it will be one of the best and most affordable investments you can and should consider.

Having responsibility for others and their careers and livelihood is an enormous responsibility. Since most people are not born leaders, but instead become and evolve into this role, recognize they are generally not prepared well for the role they are in. When you look at and realize your leader is in this situation, your expectations will be more realistically set for the outcome of what they are capable of achieving.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whispererand is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One

 

What’s your business energy level?

Having spent decades crafting my marketing and indirectly my sales skills, there is one thing which always sticks out in my mind about each of these disciplines. It is how every aspect of what we were doing was measured.  Talk about feeling like you were always under a microscope. Or, being constantly judged on the metrics associated with your discipline.

Being under continuous surveillance can take its toll on people. Although there may be some exceptions. Granted measuring results is a fundamental part of business, but what if and what are the measurements used to determine employees or the company’s energy level?

The first thing which comes to mind is the annual employee satisfaction survey which is sent out. Does this really reveal how satisfied employees are, or does it simply give them an opportunity to vent? This method isn’t going to be helpful in determining energy level’s, but short of applying medical practices (e.g., taking your temperature, blood pressure), is there a way to establish people and company energy levels?

Leaders of companies who are gifted in the emotional intelligence (EI) category are generally perceptive of how other people, and collectively what the energy level of their company is. Although this gets harder to determine when a company has over 50-100 employees. However, even if a leader is able to assess their company energy level, it is still hard to quantify this level amount. More importantly to note, it is certainly subjective.

So, is it possible or reasonable to think there are ways to determine a company’s energy level? If a company knew what it’s energy level was, and let’s say it was low, what could they do about this?

Here are some suggestions I have seen companies apply to help boost their collective energy level:

  • Rally around an organization or cause which could be in alignment with what your company does. If this is too challenging to find a direct alignment with another cause, then mutually determine one to work with. Focusing on helping others is an excellent way of changing a company’s energy level.
  • Consider physically moving to another work area within your company. Several of the companies I worked at had us move our desks every 3-6 months. The energy level of our teams soared when we did this, and it caused people to have to collaborate well together to make the move happen. When you change your physical location, it also does wonders for your overall attitude too.
  • Give your employees something to look forward to. It doesn’t have to be anything expensive to invest in, as it could be as simple as asking a food truck which specializes in desserts to randomly show up outside of your building. If the company can pay for this treat, even better.
  • Dedicating a day a week to do something different at your company also can pick up the energy level. For instance, how about having teams take turns to BBQ for each other one day a week, make waffles or ice cream sundaes or perhaps something healthy?
  • Borrowing from one of my other story ideas, how about having weekly or once a month lunch-and-learns ? The topic can either be work or non-work related. The non-work ones of course will be more fun, and you will be impressed to hear about the hobbies and subjects that your employees are enthusiasts about!
  • Pot luck lunches are lots of fun, and a low-cost option which I have seen the company energy level increase. For those employees who are competitive, throw in a prize or prizes, either monetary or simply bragging rights to who has the best, fill-in-the-blank for the item they made. Hint, pies, chili and cookies are easy contests to run.

Although I do not presently have a subjective measurement for you (yet), to help you know what your energy level is, start out with trying some of the suggestions above and see if you notice if your company energy level improves. Also, be aware if your own energy level improves too. Most importantly, be as creative as you can be with trying out different activities to give you the energy boost you are looking for.

Kathleen E. R. Murphy is the Founder, Chief Performance Strategist and CEO of Market Me Too.  She is a Gallup Certified Strengths Finder Coachauthor of Wisdom Whispererand is a well-respected motivational and social influencer with a global following from her numerous speaking, print, radio and television media appearances.

Essentially every team is dysfunctional in some way. Our expertise is in uniting, motivating and bridging dysfunctional teams (sports & business), and turning them into epic ones.

Market Me Too also works with individuals from students to C-level executives. The individuals, business and sports teams we work with are coached on how to leverage and apply their peak performance talents on a daily basis. Our coaching produces repeatable, measurable and amazing results personally and professionally. Need proof? Just talk to our clients, or read through our testimonials.

If you want better and different results, let’s talk. We know how to help you get them. Contact Kathleen at kathymurphy@me.com or (339) 987-0195.

“NEW!” Guide for Teams:

Every team is dysfunctional at some point.  Click on the link below to obtain a “free guide” with (5) Proven Strategies To Turn Your Dysfunctional Team Into An Epic One,