Archive | March 2014

Avoid These Confidence-Busting Traps


By Matt Collins
March 21, 2014

Confidence is an expectation of a positive outcome. It is not a personality trait; it is an assessment of a situation that sparks motivation. It’s not confidence itself that produces success; it’s the investment and the effort. To muster the confidence to meet your goals, avoid these common traps:

• Goals that are too big or too distant. Leaders often like to say they want to tackle BHAGs — “big hairy audacious goals.” But having only enormous goals can actually undermine confidence. Confidence comes from small wins that occur repeatedly, with each small step moving you closer to the big goal.

• Blaming someone else. Confidence rests on taking responsibility for one’s own behavior. Even in difficult circumstances, we have choices about how to respond to adversity. When the blame game is carried out within companies, everyone loses confidence, including external stakeholders. Confidence is the art of moving on.


Help Your People Develop on the Job #Managementtips #PersonalEffectiveness

By Matt Collins

March 21, 2014

As much as 90% of learning and development takes place on the job – which makes sense since continuous learning is a key strategy for a sustainable career. In fact, employees’ direct managers are often their most important developers. Help your team members flourish with these tips:

• Instead of a yearly conversation about career goals during performance reviews, talk frequently. Regular discussions about your employees’ objectives and interests help them to refine goals and spot opportunities for development.

• When planning a group project, ask team members to identify both how they can contribute and what they would like to learn. This avoids their volunteering to perform only tasks that they already know they can do.

• Ask employees to report back periodically to you and fellow team members on what they have been learning and how they are using their new skills and knowledge.

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone #Managementtips #Leadership

Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

By Matt Collins
March 6, 2014

Moving beyond our comfort zones is how we can best learn and grow. To develop the courage to take a leap, and the skill and ability to actually pull it off:

Understand what’s in it for you to motivate yourself. Brainstorm how working on this tough behavior — networking, perhaps, or public speaking — can advance your career or help you reach other goals.

• Then, customize a plan to take control of a situation instead of being overwhelmed by it. If, for example, you’re an introvert who dreads networking events, instead of feeling pressured to meet everyone, focus on a few people and actually try to get to know them, or aim to make initial contacts with the goal of following up in a more comfortable setting.