Are you the curious type? Do you have conversations with colleagues or employees that end in one sentence? Do you ask open ended questions or do you ask questions that simply require a yes or no answer? Asking yes or no questions doesn’t offer the participant a chance to interact or truly respond. Asking questions is a fine art that entrepreneurs should hone.
Here are some of the reasons that asking questions just might make you a better leader.
Even though you are the owner or manager or leader, asking opinions of your staff and other managers on the team shows everyone that you value their input. Asking for opinions and insight makes for a more open working environment and you just might hear an answer to a solution that you’d never imagined. Give your staff a voice!
If you’re looking to delegate, you need to talk with those to whom you want to delegate. This will be a way to engage with them and more importantly, gauge their interest in a possible increase in responsibilities. Talk to staff members before you simply hand out new work tasks.
If you’re moving your company toward a particular goal, ask questions of those involved to see whether they need more resources, whether there are any snags in the process and what other resources they may need from you to take the project to fruition.
If you’re in the habit of coaching your staff toward higher levels of success, you need to not only talk with and to them, you need to listen to their needs and whether they are on the trajectory they imagined they’d be.
You’ll be more approachable if your employees know that some of the ideas they suggest are truly taken into consideration. We have all worked with employers who listen and nod but immediately forget what we’ve said once the conversation is over. Don’t be that kind of leader.
Are you a good “asker of questions?” Do you take time to build relationships and have conversations with colleagues, staff and vendors? If you can’t remember the last time you had a productive conversation with them, take a look at your own conversation style to see if it needs to be changed.
The Summer 2016 Olympics are a thing of the past, but we want to take some time in this article to talk about whether your business deserves a gold medal. We bet it does! Even if you’re never going to get up on the podium and have a medal hung around your neck, here are some things that many entrepreneurs do that warrant gold medal treatment.
They create.Entrepreneurs are creators. They take their idea and run with it. They find ways to address a pain point. They are innovators.
You’re your own boss. Do you remember the leap of faith it took to make the change from employee to employer or entrepreneur? It was scary as hell, but you did it! You are your own boss and you just might be making opportunities available for others.
You use your talent. We all have talents. Some may feel more hidden than others, but everyone has a unique talent that they could potentially use to start their own business. What’s your talent?
You’re doing a better job. When you’re working for a company you may find yourself frustrated with the status quo. This is especially true if you see a better, faster, more efficient way to take on a task and your ideas aren’t being considered. As your own boss, you can take your ideas and run with them!
What prompted you to start your business? What do you do each and every day that warrants a gold medal? If you asked your customers or your staff what would they say sets you apart from the rest and would make you the gold standard to aspire to? We’d love to know.
If you’re still wondering what your talents are and how you can uncover them so you can make the leap into business ownership, send me an email and we can talk about how unique you are!
Is your business at a point where you need that special “something” to propel you toward the next level of success? What is that “something”? For some entrepreneurs, working with a business could be the next step in your business and helping it grow.
How to find a business coach
If you’ve decided this is the time to get your own business coach, what steps can you take to find one? Here are my tips:
Ask colleagues if they use a coach and if they’d recommend him or her.
Do a search on Google for business coaches in your particular niche.
Find a coach that will offer a complementary session; you need to be a personality fit if your coaching is going to benefit you and your growth.
Know what you’re looking for in a coach. What do you feel you need? Where are you stuck? If you don’t have an idea of what you’re seeking in a coach, you will be spinning your wheels.
Make sure your personality is a fit. If you’re quiet and reserved, a coach who is loud and brash may not fit your style.
Set goals with him or her and have measurable goals along the way that show you you’re headed in the right direction.
If you begin working with a coach and you just don’t feel it’s of benefit, talk with him or her and let them know. Maybe you can reboot and get back on track.
Have you ever considered working with a business coach? If you worked with one, what was the outcome? I’d love to know.
Work-life balance is a phrase that has become somewhat cliche, but it is a phrase that resonates. If you’re an entrepreneur who has a family who also is helping out with an aging parent or even giving back to your community — it’s a lot to balance. How do you “do it all” and “have it all” without losing your mind and your health in the process?
Value your own time. If you let others dictate your time you are allowing them the access to do that and you’re showing you don’t value your time because you’re just giving it away.
Learn to say no. Saying no is important to your physical and mental health. Saying no is also something you need to do when you want to stay focused in your business. Don’t get off track in business or personal items because you say yes to everything.
Spend five minutes at the beginning of each day and at the end of each day to count your gratitude. Also, take five minutes at the beginning and end of each work day to make a to-do list and to then plan for the following day.
Don’t multitask. It’s a myth that you get more done if you do more than one thing at a time. The fact is, you don’t do anything well if you’re switching your thoughts between two tasks at the same time. Time block and work on one project at a time for X number of minutes. When you’re with family, be present. Don’t check work email or take business phone calls. Be with your family and turn off the office.
Take breaks and get up and move. Our sedentary lifestyles lead to obesity and other health issues. Set a timer if you have to in order to remind yourself to get up and move every hour. Walk around the house, do jumping jacks, walk on a treadmill. Wear a step tracker and shoot for 5,000 steps per day — work your way up to the recommended 10,00 steps per day.
Taking care of yourself will help you be a viable, happy entrepreneur and individual. How do you balance your work and your life?