I read an article recently that used the acronym KNOW to talk about what leaders should be doing to lead and how they can be in the KNOW about what makes a strong team. I believe that when it comes to leading a team, or even if you’re a solopreneur in charge of only leading yourself, you can never stop learning. A leader that stops learning is one who falls behind the curve on the latest technologies and trends.
Here is what the KNOW acronym means to me:
K — is for the Knowledge that each leader brings to the table and to his or her clients. Your clients and your team look to you to provide them the tools necessary to function.
N — is to NOT always be the first to offer an opinion or an automatic solution. Regardless of whether you know the answer, let your team puzzle it out. Ask open ended questions if you need to to get the ball rolling and the brainstorming started.
O — is the time you Open your office to your team. Build in time for one on ones, but also Open your schedule for time for yourself. It’s not always easy at the top and you need time to recharge and replenish your mind, body and soul.
W — Weigh your options before you settle on one. Don’t limit yourself to the “that’s the way we’ve always done it” mindset. Be open to other ideas and ways of doing things.
What do you KNOW?
Working in your business everyday can sometimes seem like pushing a rock up a hill, right? You know you need to be, and stay, motivated but there are some days when it’s more difficult than others.
There are some ways to stay motivated even when the going gets tough and remember, at the end of the day, success comes to he who works toward it! Here are my business motivation tips:
- Set goals. More important than that: Set realistic, attainable goals. If you aim too high and keep falling short, you will lose your motivation. Set attainable short- and long-term goals and work toward them daily.
- You’re going to fail. Everyone does. When you do, you need to pick yourself up, dust yourself off and start again. Also, don’t forget to focus on your achievements. It is easy to get caught up in a failure and lost sight of your achievements.
- Set up a routine and stick to it. Having a routine – even one as seemingly simple as writing down a to-do list on a daily basis – helps keep you on track and a visible to do list keeps you motivated. Additionally, checking items off of your to-do list keeps you motivated for the days ahead!
What can you do to become motivated if you’re not? What steps can you take to remain motivated?
To be successful, both in your personal life and your business life, one needs to have a healthy measure of self confidence. Whether you were born with full serving of self confidence or whether you need to work on it, there are several steps you can take to boost your self confidence and your self esteem, including:
- Understand what your weaknesses are and then work to strengthen them. Do you have a hard time with follow-through? What can you to do address that? Can you set smaller, more attainable goals? Can you find an accountability partner?
- What are your inherent strengths? Use those to your advantage and focus on those tasks at which you excel. In business you should concentrate on your core competencies and contract out those tasks which fall outside that realm.
- Strengthen your weaknesses. Analyze and find the areas that should be improved, then make a daily effort to improve these weak points in an endeavor to make them assets rather than liabilities.
- Always be learning. The more you know about your particular business niche the more you will excel in it. If new technologies are on the horizon, take a class, talk to an expert, be the early adapter. Be the go-to expert in your niche.
- Attitude is everything. If you project confidence and a positive attitude, it just may manifest itself in all that you do. Adopt a winning attitude!
Remember, no one is perfect and rather than bury your flaws, embrace them and work to make changes to address them.
Even as a solopreneur there is a chance you will work with contractors and you may grow your business large enough that you will need to hire staff. When that time arises, as the business owner you may be asked to provide feedback to a team member on a project he or she is involved in. As with all communications, the words as well as the tone influence how the feedback is received and digested by the person to whom it’s offered.
How can you provide valuable feedback in such a way that it will be received and taken to heart by the person to whom you’re delivering it? Here are five ways I’ve found that have worked in my organization:
- Provide feedback in a positive way. You obviously want your team member and the project to be a success so make certain the message you deliver provides a positive intent.
- Choose a time for the feedback when the receiver will be receptive to it. Friday at 5 pm or in the midst of a time-crunched task is not the time to offer feedback.
- Begin your feedback with an “I” statement rather than a “you” statement. “I’d like to discuss how the project is moving forward” rather than “Your contribution to the project…” Using “you” can put the receiver on the defensive.
- Make certain your tone and your body language is supportive. Speak softly, don’t stand with your arms folded or your hands on your hips.
- Leave an opening for the receiver to respond and listen thoughtfully to his/her concerns.
Successful outcomes in all conversations can be had with a little planning and forethought.