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Social Distancing, Business Shifts, BIG CHANGES! Knowing ourselves & others to THRIVE, Ep.27

The coronavirus has caused businesses, non-profits, entrepreneurs, schools and hospitals, pretty much every segment of business to shift norms, ways of working and doing business. How we respond as organizations depends on how we as individuals unite, each with our unique combination of behaviors and attitudes.  In this episode, we’ll explore what we know about behaviors and attitudes and how understanding these human traits helps us in times of dramatic change and how an organizational effort to grow our understanding of ourselves and others is a timely investment.

There are many ways organizations are shifting.  The themes include

1. Digital Transformation (Building new digital tools and services)
2. Changing Delivery Modes (Schools, Restaurants, Health Clubs, Human Services)
3. Ramping Down (Manufacturers, Hospitals, Entrepreneurs)
4. Forced Closures (For compliance, for the safety of staff and those we serve)
5. Forced Continuance Planning (Maintaining business as usual)
6. Telework (The new reality for a significant percentage of our population)

How do these shifts affect us, each with our own natural behaviors and attitudes toward new things, our environment, learning and others?    

Limited time, high risks, countless unknowns,  little to no budget, a development cycle nightmare.  The model of try-fail-iterate-try again can teach us much.  Failure, the kind that pushes us to new answers, the act of building, getting feedback and making changes to products and services without high investment, while incredibly promising, pushes us to understand ourselves and others at a time when the stakes are high. 

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High “S”s Know How to Climb

Climbing is an act of steady performance. Relax, don’t get too eager and make mistakes. One step, another, and another. Focus and be patient. If you’re a High “C”, you like, no…NEED…clearly defined goals to take action. You probably never use the phrase, “Let’s just jump right in and see what happens.” Sound like you? And, having a support team you trust is important to you. Trust is earned and you need to see that others offer stability. If they cause chaos, they’re not getting connected to your safety rope anytime soon. Regularity in your day and projects make you a driven player. You will reach the mountain top, but on your own time, you know rushing is dangerous. Causing unexpected landslides is REALLY dangerous and you do everything to avoid that.

You’re known for your persistence. You can be a great source of encouragement to your team when a storm starts to build. Helping everyone stay together and on course is your strength. That trait can also be a HUGE source of stress. That storm brewing shifts course and heads in your direction, quickly. In this moment, a confrontation starts to develop. One of the team members wants to change plans, NOW. You don’t have all the information you need so you attempt to slow the pace of the decision. You’re being asked to be flexible and impulsive and you start to shut down. The team starts to steamroll over you and before you know it, they move out. What you’re feeling right now is anything but “business as usual.”

Consistency, you believe in it, practice it, trust it. You bring awareness to the team that in times of change and turmoil, consistent actions and norms lead to success. You start to clear chaos on the team and even though the path has changed, you make sure to bring regulation back to your efforts. Just because the course has changed doesn’t mean you bury all your proven tactics. Those on your team that love change, embrace it, BRING IT ON themselves, you know they can create amazing new opportunities. But, they seem reckless to you. You can support change and innovation by showcasing how patience can lead to quality. They may ignore you when you try to hide in the background a bit, so learning how to share your insights means letting others know how you think and what your needs are. Likewise, you know bringing others on your adventure means you can reach the top of the highest mountain, no matter what the world throws at you. This means taking your hands out of your pockets once in a while and recognizing the need to sell an idea or thought with passion. It feels uncomfortable, but you know adaptation is not all about others adapting to you. If anyone gets that, you do. By tapping into your persistence, you can gain the trust of many.

When your team needs to climb the HighEST mountain, they need you.

Saddle Up, High “I’ers”

High “I” yo Silver, away! The stories of the Lone Ranger and his quest to bring law and order to the people. Noble. Heroic. Humble. Stories teach, right wrongs, inspire us to action, connect us. If you’re a High I, an influencer, you have the natural ability to engage others through your words. You see a bright future and you HAVE to share it. On your team, you are counted on to “sell” it, whatever IT is. When the group needs someone to share what they just can’t seem to, they look in your direction. You saddle up. You take the reins and gallop full speed ahead and run with it.

You believe you can convince others of almost anything. All we “others” need to do is listen and learn. We’ll eventually come around to seeing things the way you do. When others seem disinterested, you start to feel weighed down. A phrase you may repeat to yourself is “They’re crushing my mojo.” When others don’t want to run at your speed, you may just leave them behind. Should you though? You know from time to time, you find yourself all alone in the corral. Others have moved on, but you’re still going in circles sharing the story you want to share. The “others” are telling you something. They’re telling you that work needs something else from you, some other focus. If you can’t join, the work will leave you behind. That feels scary, and lonely. This is not a place you want to be.

In the post, Embrace Your High-C Behaviors, a connection between High-Cs and High-Is was formed. Gallop over and give that a read. As a High-I, you feel comfortable making connections with others. The power behind your not so dark mask is being rather demanding. This can be off-putting to others, such as High-Ss, who are steady, relaxed, predictable, and modest. Rather than riding full speed up to a High-S, pull back and come to a trot before you get close. Come up along side them, say “Hello”, ride quietly for a bit and then ask how they see or think about the situation. As the story unfolds, you’ll come into your element. Hearing the pieces of evidence unfold from a logical perspective, you are forming what will become an amazing creation of a story. You can go away informed. Be careful, your job is to stay in the saddle, let the ride happen, listen, take it all in. Don’t push the pace or grab their reins. When you’re finished, guide your trusty steed quietly off. If you feel the urge to kick up some dust, just wait a bit. Once you’re out of sight, go for it.

You’re team needs your enthusiasm, your inspiration and your ability to adapt, be humble and patient. When called to action, they can trust you. High “I” Yo Silver, Away!

Embrace your High-C Behaviors

High-C’ers unite. That’s right. Your High-C behavior is powerful. Now, I’m not saying you’re better than others. No, well, at least, don’t go around saying that. As a High-C, you probably wouldn’t anyway. Just don’t. The High-C, or High Compliance behavioral trait brings an analytical view to projects, work and organizations. If you’re a High-C, do you find you tend to shift your team from a hurried pace to a slower, more thoughtful, investigatory cadence? Excellent. Your team needs you.

Now, let’s flip the point of view for a moment. As a High-C, have you experienced intolerance from the aggressive movers and shakers in your group? You know who I’m taking about, those folks that are ready to jump into a big pool of Hi-C without even knowing if it’s cherry or watermelon flavored. Unbelievable. (Notice what I did there with the Hi-C reference?) Your reflective natural tendency provides a ton of “whoa there” before teams makes mistakes. BUT, you can also be viewed as the person holding back progress if you’re not careful.

Let’s talk about those sellers in work group. These are the folks who LOVE to tell stories and consider their tales as evidence. As a High-C, you’re not as easily swayed. You need proof. Just because someone says it is, doesn’t mean you’re on board. And, you don’t believe others should buy into things as quickly either. But see, here’s the thing. It’s time to take a deep breath. Those story telling colleagues are passionate and exciting. They can sell. In fact, that’s their job. But, where do they get their stories? Within your organization, they count on you as a High-C to generate the evidence that whatever your organization does works. They’ll try to sell without that evidence, but you can fix that. Provide them data, help them shape their stories and then, let them go forth and inspire. Meanwhile, you can continue your work, more behind the scenes, doing what you do.

As a High-C, conflict is not you’re friend. You may even find your top repeated phrases are “Yeah, well…” with a hint of haughty derision. Sorry, I know that hurts. Don’t take is personally. Take is perspectively. You’re arms crossed, straight faced nature makes you intimidating to others at times. Understanding how to adapt is just as important for you as it for others. Remember, you provided the evidence others needed to do their work. They’ll love you for that. But, this doesn’t mean they have to be making all the adaptations so you feel valued. Watch your body language. And, in sessions where creativity is the focus, let the group explore and chime in with ways you can add value to the ideation process. Putting the breaks on imagination sessions will make you an unwelcome partner. In this case, think of phrases such as “I can give you some data on that idea to help showcase its impact.” This shows you can support an idea, even if it’s far fetched in your mind. Remembers, as you aim to provide the data, if you don’t find evidence, let them know how an idea could be modified. Be ready for a situation where the team just simply wants to try something new. In that case, play your supportive role and help collect NEW data.

Embrace your High-C and help your team achieve.

Game-Based Thinking & Organizational Development Ep.26

I kick off Season 2 of MYNDDCAST with one of my favorite people, Dr. Karl Kapp. We talk about the power of Game-Based Thinking to help organizations change and grow. The ability to PLAY is built into us as humans. How well we adopt that by pushing against our adult, restrictive thinking is up to us. Join us as we explore using the power of Game-Based Thinking to impact our organizations.

This episode is sponsored by: Step Away, a unique game-based conference.

You know you need to create thinking time and space but how do you do that in a structured manner that leads to results. The answer is a unique corporate conference geared toward creativity and play called “Step Away.”  Step Away is unlike any corporate experience you’ve ever had, it takes place in a venue where every room is themed after a different game like Scrabble, Monopoly and Clue just to name a few. Visit the link to learn more and to register.

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MYNDDCAST Season 1, Emily Bayuk, Motivating Girls to Explore STEM

Emily Bayuk is an artist, student of Electrical Engineering at Bucknell University and young entrepreneur inspiring girls to explore their passion for STEM through her book, “The Fundamentals of Circuits Made Easy.” Emily created the artistic, story-based content for her book in her junior year of high school and in 2019 self published. Join me to hear Emily’s story on this episode of MYNDDCAST.

Grab your copy of her book at: The Fundamentals of Circuits Made Easy

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MYNDDCAST Moment, The Employee Engagement Problem

Describe employee engagement? We all need engaged employees and statistics show employee engagement is a significant challenge. On this episode, we’ll explore the simple, but complex solution to your employee engagement problem.

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MYNDDCAST: Season 1 Episode 9, Dr. Lynn Hummel, Explorer, Entrepreneur and Community Builder

Lynn expands the boundaries of all that he does as a dedicated explorer, entrepreneur and community builder. As a child, he learned what it means to serve others by working in his grandparents’ restaurants. He’s turned his thirst to see the world into both a business and a way to help others learn. His dedication to building an every-growing community of learners pushes him to take on new adventures and leadership roles. Join me as I speak with Dr. Lynn Hummel in this episode of MYNDDCAST.

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MYNDDCAST Moments, Risk vs Risky

Struggling to hire people who move your organization forward? You could be confusing RISK and RISKY. If you are, the power of RISK and those who embrace it may be missing from your organizational culture. In this episode, we explore this important distinction.

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MYNDDCAST Moments, Correct Solutions or Corrective Actions?

Counting on the existence of proven, Correct Solutions can lead leaders to avoid taking on the development of Corrective Actions. While both have their place in a leader’s toolkit, it’s important to not get tied to always seeking only proven, Correct Solutions. Often, they simply don’t exist. Or, worse, counting on them holds back great innovation.