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Syndication

 

Recently Kirsten was working with a client and, as is often the case, they began sharing about a challenge with an employee.  The employee was missing deadlines and it was becoming a problem. They talked through some strategies and then…….there it was………

“I feel bad.  He’s my friend.”

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Direct download: DTD_103__Hiring_a_Friend__Be_Real_About_Your_Reasons.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:44am EDT

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I often say that I have a lot of bandwidth. I juggle, manage, keep track of many different projects at once. And it’s not just the number but also the breadth of tasks. I am often juggling wildly varying tasks between my professional and personal responsibilities.

I worked my way through college waitressing and you really have to think ahead and be efficient to do well. I think I honed many of my multi-tasking skills there.

Then I became a mom and that definitely adds some volume and breadth to your list of responsibilities.

As a single mom and business owner for 8 years I became a multi-tasker on steroids, wearing all the hats and taking on many tasks and responsibilities alone.

I used to carry the full weight of any project from start to finish for the entire duration. So, the multitude of tasks and breadth of responsibilities sat as a weight on my shoulders, sometimes for long periods. At times the burden was too much. The stress of so many unfinished tasks all at once could feel overwhelming.

Over time I learned a new way of dealing with large projects that serves me better and has increased my bandwidth even more. Now, I’m not talking about the logistics of how I captured the multitude of individual tasks leading up to any finished project.

This isn’t an episode about project management techniques or the latest software that tracks your progress. As an aside you I do recommend Toodledo, an app and web destination tool, but I digress.

No, this is about how I’ve learned to handle a multitude of tasks mindfully.

You see, even once I had effectively captured all of the tasks in a system the entire responsibility sat as a weight in my mind until fully complete. At times there were projects with many moving parts that would not be finished for months. In my mind the sense of urgency to get the long term project done was equal to that of a project that needed to be done that day.

It was a lot of stress. The push and pressure was constant. I did not give myself the “ah it’s done feeling” until a project was fully complete.  It didn’t matter that a project would be unfinished for months. I felt the full weight of the entire thing for that period.

Over the years, and out of necessity, I have learned the art of setting aside the sense of urgency around the entire task and have learned to compartmentalize the sub tasks, not just in my project management system, but in my mind.

If you are a person who struggles with the pressure of the full weight of long term projects you know exactly what I’m talking about.

To achieve the desired result and defeat the drama of overwhelm you must set aside the full project as if it’s not there. Trust in whatever system you are using to capture all of the elements of your full project. Let that be the repository for the list.   And then release your mind to focus only on the next step. No worrying about the activities you don’t have time for yet. Feel the sense of urgency for only the next deadlines. Experience the sense of accomplishment or relief as you finish each step.

Releasing a focus on the full project is similar to freeing up RAM on your computer. There is more usable space for what you must do now. You can fill the extra “now” capacity to increase productivity or capture the capacity for things like rejuvenation or personal growth.

It takes practice but you’ll be amazed at the positive impact!

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Direct download: DTD_102__The_Secret_to_Increasing_Your_Capacity.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Kirsten teaches on the power of having a positive attitude.

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Direct download: DTD_101__Power_of_a_Positive_Attitude_-_Lessons_from_a_Teen.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Episode 100...Time to CELEBRATE!

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Direct download: DTD_100__Celebrating_Milestones.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:38pm EDT

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Recently, I was at an event and overheard someone talking about how bored they’ve been over the last few months.  It really made me stop and think.  I absolutely cannot remember a time when I have felt bored.

I must admit I’ve definitely been unproductive, lazy, tired, procrastinating, overwhelmed and many other things that have kept me from getting into gear, though these are rare.  But, bored has never been one.  That feeling that I have nothing to do.

I had to stop and think, “what would that be like?”

I must admit that at first a part of me felt a little jealous.  Wow, to just be done with all of the pressing tasks.  No deadlines weighing down, no pressures, no “I really should’s”.

But, as I thought further, I really became sad for this person.  Because the flip side of “I’m bored” is the missed opportunities for excitement, a sense of accomplishment, fulfilling your passion, living life on purpose, making it happen, getting it done, the exhilaration of hitting a big milestone, or that Ahhhh feeling of rolling into bed after an exceptionally productive day.

I’ll take overwhelmed, stressed and driven any day.  I am blessed to live the full life that I am living.  It’s how we are meant to live. To live any other way means to deny the world of our unique gifts, talents and skills.

Yes, I’m sure I push myself a bit too hard at times.  But the fire in my belly, the energy in my step, the smile on my face and the joy in my life are what it’s all about.  And it’s how you are meant to live too!

What will you do today to make it happen?  Your life is waiting and so is the world!

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Direct download: DTD_099__Are_You_Bored_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:01am EDT

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When I work with clients they are often in the midst of change.   Whether they started to transform before our work or it comes out of some new found awareness through the work I find myself helping them maneuver through transitions big or small.

At some point during the process I usually find myself saying, Just Get on With it!

You see, we humans are change avoidant. That lizard part of our brain experiences fear from the thought of anything new and it says – Stop! Danger!

It is our nature to go into tuck and cover. Maintain status quo. Keep safe.

So, transformation can be difficult and my get in action clients like to feel like they are making progress so they begin to research. They read, they web surf, they talk to people, they make a plan, they get feedback on the plan, they think about the plan, they tweak the plan, they do a bit more research, they find another book, they order it from Amazon. They wait for it and then dive in. They put together some numbers, they shuffle them around. They look at all the possibilities and visualize the change from different angles, they talk to a few experts, they speak to a few friends, they journal.

Then they do a bit more research and consider a couple different angles.

It’s at this point I have to stop them and say – The Research portion of this transformation can no longer be considered action.

Just Get on With it!

You’ve heard the term analysis paralysis. Some are plagued with it for even the smallest task. Others get stuck only when it’s a big transformation.

Does change require research and knowledge?

Absolutely!

But at a certain point you can learn nothing more about the change unless you make it!

Years ago I was helping to launch a new program. We had done the research, put educated guesses together about how we should launch. Many on the team thought we should wait 6 more months or a year before launch.

I asked the question, “What more can we learn without actually doing what we plan?”

“Many of our questions can not be answered without actually doing.”

We’ll gain new knowledge as we go. We’ll never launch perfectly. We can always tweak after the fact.  Let’s just go!

And we did! And it was great! Did we make some changes after the fact? Yep!

But there was nothing more to be learned by sitting in a room taking guesses about the unknown.

So, where are you stuck in analysis paralysis?

Where have you gathered a satisfactory amount of information?

Where must you begin to act to get the rest of your questions answered about what it will be like? How will it go? Will this work?

Today, where will you stop researching and take at least one actual action towards your goal or transformation?

It will feel great!

If it’s not perfect, and it won’t be, you’ll adjust.

Just Get On With It!

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Direct download: DTD_098__Just_Get_On_With_It.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:23pm EDT

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Let’s face it, life is better if we get what we want. If the world, circumstances and other people would just cooperate life would be grand!

If you’ve had a toddler or have at least been around one you’ve seen that innate desire live out. During those early years there is really no sense of others. All they know is what they want and they will pull out all the stops in their limited bag of tricks to get what they want.

They might try cute first and then move to whining and pleading. From there they’ll head straight for the full out temper tantrum, throwing themselves on the ground, crying, kicking, and screaming like their world will come to an end if they don’t get that toy or candy.

Luckily, most toddlers are taught that that’s not an appropriate response. They learn to accept delayed gratification and sharing becomes easier.

When my boys were little and they’d start to whine I would tell them, “I can’t understand you when you talk like that.” Or, “you are just getting farther and farther away from getting what you want.”   And I did my darndest to do nothing to reward them during a rant.

We had sitting time outs in the middle of grocery stores, left restaurants.

As I think back I must say, I do NOT miss those times!!

It was sometimes very inconvenient to follow through with consequences or not give in but I wanted them to learn that whining and temper tantrums were not the route to getting their way.

As adults, we still have that innate desire to get our way.  Most of us have learned to consider the needs of others in addition to our own. Or, have learned the art of delayed gratification, understanding the need to set goals and work for things we want. Others have learned to put their own wants and needs aside choosing, instead, to focus on helping others get what they desire.

And, there are those who still work to get their way. Sometimes it’s okay. We have an opinion or perspective that has helped us make an informed decision about what we think is best. We seek to have our opinion known and understood through assertive communication.

Still others will use more manipulative tactics. Work the politics of the office, start gossip, stay quiet in a meeting and then campaign for your agenda. Or use the stay stuck strategies I talk about in episodes 50 through 53, as a for instance,

They are denial, defensiveness, deflection and defriending. Here are the links:

Episode 50: http://goo.gl/PHk0gv
Episode 51: http://goo.gl/sQWRzC
Episode 52: http://goo.gl/APuWMg
Episode 53: http://goo.gl/ynIJNm

Or perhaps you’ve seen a grown up throw an adult sized temper tantrum.

And, do I even need to say it? All of this creates drama!

I have seen through my work that some people will deploy manipulate tactics to get their way for a short period while others will keep going, pulling out all the stops and using multiple manipulation tools. Most will have a stopping point where they throw in the towel and quietly give up.

I recently shared the results of a cultural assessment with a client and felt compelled to emphasize more than usual that the information contained in the report must be kept confidential.

I shared that normally I see a person’s end point. They use manipulative tactics and then give up the fight, realizing they must succumb.

In this instance, however, I was up against someone who continued to use manipulative tactics and covert operations with me during the entire evaluation. This person lied, changed appointments a gagillion times, was a no call no show for a couple of appointments, tried to avoid me during our scheduled times when he did show up by continuing to take phone calls and then dragging them out, telling me had to leave suddenly. And when all of that didn’t work, this person became condescending.

When that failed he got incredibly defensive, belittling, and arrogant. Then there was badgering and trying to block me from key documents I needed to review.

During the entire process, this person, who knew I’d be providing a report to his superiors, never backed down. Instead he continued to escalate his tactics; like a toddler, but in an adult way.

I never did see his end point. What else was he capable of? Thus, the extra emphasis on keeping a report confidential.

It got me thinking. We all have the capacity to try some tactics to get our way. Some overt and some covert, some professional and above board and some not.

It’s time to do some reality checking. My question for you today is:

  • Are you aware?
  • What actions, behaviors, conversations, tactics do you use to try to get your way?
  • Do you use different tactics in your personal life than you do in your professional one?
  • Are you passive, aggressive or assertive with your tactics?
  • Are you engaging in covert operations, working behind the scenes gossiping or working the politics of the office in your favor?
  • Are you sitting quietly in a meeting and then campaigning for your position afterwards?
  • At what point are you willing to concede?
  • Do you take it too far? Do you need to let go sooner?
  • Are you retaliatory after the fact if you don’t get your way?
  • Are there areas where your desire to get your makes you blind to the perspectives, desires, ideas of others?
  • Where are you igniting drama rather than defeating it?

Take some time to really think about these questions and get real. Are there changes you need to make in this area?

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Direct download: DTD_097__What_Do_You_Do_To_Get_Your_Way_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:00am EDT

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As I’ve shared before, many of people I work with struggle with people pleasing. Often they feel overwhelmed and resentful. They struggle to get things done on time because they are always over committed.   No matter how busy, they continue to say yes to all the requests people make of them.

If you haven’t mastered the art of saying no this is probably you.

So, let’s look at some key reasons why some people have such a hard time saying no – do you see yourself anywhere?

And here’s one I hear from many of my Christian clients. “God wants me to serve others.”

I do believe this is true. We are all given gifts to use in the service of others. But, here’s the thing, if you are a follower of God, He is supposed to guide your actions, your service. If people are taking up 100% of your time you don’t have the capacity left to follow God’s lead. He does not call us to serve 100% of the people who come asking, regardless of the request.

So, if you are a people pleaser who has used this as your excuse I ask you to stop.

Here are six strategies to help you say no. Use them, practice them, take back some control of your time.

Buy Time: “let me check my calendar, or I”ll get back to you in a couple of days, or let me think about that, or check with my partner

Policy Statement: sounds office –cast in stone, out of your hands. “I have a policy not to volunteer in the evenings.

Shift the Focus – this is not about you, I need to say no for me. – said with empathy for the other person’s situation and with eye contact

Know Your Priorities: If you set a priority of the family eating together then say no to all intrusions to this.

Keep It Simple: no long-winded explanation or excuses – just sounds more defensive.

Tackle Easy Situations First: start by saying no to the paper boy or the phone solicitor first – build the muscle on the easy ones and then tackle your overbearing relative

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Direct download: DTD_096__6_Tips_to_Help_you_Say_No_without_Guilt.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Taking swift action can be very rewarding and fruitful at times. You get an idea and put it into action. Or you jump on the bandwagon for a new product and it works out well for you.

I am definitely a fan of action and forward momentum. If you are like me you feel the same.

A too Swift analysis with a final verdict can sometimes lead you astray, however. So many of my clients suffer the affects of jumping to conclusions too quickly. I call it Living in the World of Assumption.

Our assumptions generate ideas and feelings about a situation and these drive our actions.

We make assumptions about what others want from us and why, we take guesses at what our boss meant by that, we decide what the look on a co-worker’s face means about us.

I love the poem, “The Cookie Thief”. It illustrates what can happen when we assume. I first heard it read by Wayne Dyer years ago.

Here it is:

The Cookie Thief

by Valerie Cox

A woman was waiting at an airport one night,
With several long hours before her flight.
She hunted for a book in the airport shops.
Bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop.

She was engrossed in her book but happened to see,
That the man sitting beside her, as bold as could be.
Grabbed a cookie or two from the bag in between,
Which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene.

So she munched the cookies and watched the clock,
As the gutsy cookie thief diminished her stock.
She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by,
Thinking, “If I wasn’t so nice, I would blacken his eye.”

With each cookie she took, he took one too,
When only one was left, she wondered what he would do.
With a smile on his face, and a nervous laugh,
He took the last cookie and broke it in half.

He offered her half, as he ate the other,
She snatched it from him and thought… oooh, brother.
This guy has some nerve and he’s also rude,
Why he didn’t even show any gratitude!

She had never known when she had been so galled,
And sighed with relief when her flight was called.
She gathered her belongings and headed to the gate,
Refusing to look back at the thieving ingrate.

She boarded the plane, and sank in her seat,
Then she sought her book, which was almost complete.
As she reached in her baggage, she gasped with surprise,
There was her bag of cookies, in front of her eyes.

If mine are here, she moaned in despair,
The others were his, and he tried to share.
Too late to apologize, she realized with grief,
That she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief.

How many times in our lives,
have we absolutely known
that something was a certain way,
only to discover later that
what we believed to be true … was not?

So, yes,

Jump on the bandwagon

Jump for Joy

Do Jumping Jacks

But do NOT jump to conclusions!

All I can say is clarify, clarify, clarify! When in doubt, ask clarifying questions rather than jumping to conclusions!

Once while working with a client he exclaimed, “since I started working with you I feel like I’m constantly asking, ‘can you clarify that for me?’”

I laughed and told him there are all kinds of ways to start a clarifying conversation. I’ll make you a list.

That list become a .pdf with 50 different ways to ignite clarity. If you’d like me to send it to you shoot me a message. Go to defeatthedrama.com Click on the podcast site and then go to the submit your drama challenge form.

I’ll happily email you a copy!

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Direct download: DTD_095__Jump_But_Not_to_Conclusions.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Today I want to share a quick problem solving strategy that can work with your team.   It works nicely with the simple process improvement strategy I shared in episode 13. Here’s the link if you haven’t listened to it already or need a refresher: http://goo.gl/MDv646

I once had a client with a major problem. They ran out of boxes and were unable to finish their work. At first glance it would seem that they just needed to order more boxes. Upon analysis, however, they learned that the real issue was that people were moving the boxes and not scanning them in or out. There were plenty of boxes they just weren’t in the right spot and no one knew where to find them. Totally different solution is required to fix this problem.

Often a problem has many underlying issues or challenges causing it.

So, the first step to problem solving is to bring your team together with all of their wonderful perspectives and knowledge to brainstorm causes for the problem.

Once you have a list of possible causes discuss briefly and then vote.   Vote until you have it narrowed down to the top 2 or 3.

Next, it’s time to brainstorm solutions for the top 1 to 3 main causes.

Repeat the same process. Use multi-voting to narrow the list to the seemingly best solutions.

Once you’ve narrowed it down it’s time to put a game plan in place to implement the proposed solutions.

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Direct download: DTD_094__Learn_a_Super_Simple_Team_Problem_Solving_Strategy.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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If you’ve been listening to this podcast you already know that I spend a lot of time helping people overcome their drama challenges.

Often drama between people boils down to a lack of trust. You can have little or no trust for someone based on your experience with them; they’ve proven with their words or actions that they should not be trusted. Or you can lack trust because you don’t know them.

Either way, when we don’t trust someone we are more apt to assume the worst or assign mal-intent to their actions.

Of course, a history of bad behavior warrants less trust. The best predictor of future behavior is past behavior. In businesses, however, I often find that lack of trust comes from a lack of knowing. Sometimes leaders don’t give their employees time to connect.   And this creates negative assumptions and drama!

Over the years I’ve had a unique perspective into so many relationships and can say with certainty that often these assumptions are not accurate. I would even hazard to say that rarely are the assumptions driving these negative relationships true.

When communication and connection happen trust can build quickly. Assumptions are replaced with facts and relationships are transformed.

I worked with a group of 4 people who knew little of each other personally but had to deal with each other often to complete their work. The company called me in because the poor relationships were decreasing productivity.

I spent exactly one and a half hours with them and it that time they had many aha moments. “Oh, I thought when you were asking me that you trying to pass your work on to me!”

“No, I’ve already tried 4 different times to get the numbers right by the time I’m asking you to clarify some things.”

“I thought you were just coming in early so that you could leave early and find things to complain about.”

“No, with the work changes I now have to come in early to get everything set up and do the inventory. I’d actually prefer not to start so early!”

On and on it went.   Gaps in fact filled in with negative presumptions overcome with truth.

Each had painted a picture of the other like a paint by number gone wrong. The little assumptions all added to a perception of co-workers trying to avoid work, get each other in trouble and wreak havoc. Recent changes in roles and workflow had put them all together feeling uncertain and wary.

They needed to work together but had had no opportunity to build trust.

I am very visual so I almost always end up describing concepts with physical items.

I started using the term Trust Bucket to describe the level of trust we have with others. It’s just a nice visual.

So, an empty trust bucket means little trust.

A full trust bucket is like a full bank account of trust.

A full trust bucket and we are assuming the best of each other. If my co-worker of 10 years is late and I have assigned a full trust bucket to her I will assume she got held up. An empty trust bucket and I’m assuming the worst. “He doesn’t value my time or is disrespecting me.”

I find that people assign empty or full trust buckets to new people in different ways.

Some people tend to start new relationships with a full trust bucket.   “I will trust you unless you give me good cause not to.” At that point, they will have an empty trust bucket.

Others are more cautious and begin relationships with an empty trust bucket. “I need to see who you are first. Prove that you deserve my trust. You have to earn it. Then I will fill the trust bucket.”

At work it is so important to bring employees together so they have an opportunity to know each other as people and fill those trust buckets!

Drama happens when trust buckets are low. As I often say, in the absence of fact, for some reason humans fill in the blanks with negative assumptions. A process falls apart and the first instinct is for employees to blame co-workers they don’t trust, “they’re just trying to make my job harder!”

Bring those employees together and give them the chance to know one another and trust will develop. They will assume the best of each other instead.

So, a few thoughts and action items for you today.

  1. How full are your trust buckets with people? Do you start with a full bucket and empty with negative experiences or do you start empty and make them work their way to trust?
  2. Are there people in your life or work with empty trust buckets out of assumption rather than fact? How can you get to know them to learn their true character?

  3. If you are a leader, where do team members have empty trust buckets? How can you bring them together to meet, connect and build trust?

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Direct download: DTD_093__How_Full_Are_Your_Trust_Buckets_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:53am EDT

Click To Apply For A FREE Leadership Breakthrough Session with Kirsten Today! 

Most in the workforce are being asked to produce more and more. In the mean time technology has kept us connected 24/7. Co-workers and clients expect quick turn around for their questions or issues whether big or small. I’ve heard it more than once, “how can I get any work done when all I do is go to meetings and deal with issues!”

The reality is, you need uninterrupted time to focus to do your best work! Here are a few strategies that have worked well for my clients over the years:

  1. Pay attention to the interruptions. What do people need? Are there reoccurring questions? Create an FAQ or contact list. Let the past questions predict their future needs and provide the answers in another way. Get those answers out of your possession and accessible without your time.

  2. Inundated with emails? Ask coworkers to adopt a subject line phrases to clue you in on the contents.   Also ask that they include a deadline where appropriate. It will make prioritizing your emails much easier.
    1. FYI
    2. Deadline
    3. Decision
    4. Discussion

  3. Feel Like You are Always in Meetings? When you first started working it probably felt like a privilege to be included in a meeting. The farther you travel up the ladder the more your time is monopolized by them. Start asking what the purpose of the meeting is ahead of time. Do you really need to be there? Is there another way to get the update? Are the topics they will be discussing relevant to you? Do they need you for a decision? What value can you add? If you aren’t adding value or someone else can go in your place don’t go. Keep that time for more important things.

    If you’re the one calling the meeting listen to episode 91 if you haven’t already. Evaluate whether you need to keep having the meeting.

  4. Carve out Focus Time Each Week. Put it in your calendar and hold it sacred. Create some sort of visible cue for your co-workers to let them know they cannot interrupt you unless there is a true emergency. I’ve had clients make signs for their doors placed a flag on the side of a cubicle if they were working in an open work environment.
  5. Schedule Time for Emails and Voicemails: If possible answer emails and voicemails at certain times rather than letting it punctuate every moment of every day.   There are some roles that won’t lend themselves to this, I get it, but, if you can, check emails 2 or 3 times per day. You can let people know that that’s what you’ll be doing so they know not to expect an immediate response. Most people understand that you are doing it to create focus.
  6. Create specific office hours for ad hoc questions. If you’ve made yourself 100% convenient people will just pop in at all hours of the day with their questions. Often they are not urgent issues it’s just something they need to discuss. By creating office hours for questions and conversations you will train people to hold the non-urgent matters to those specific times. You’ll enjoy more focus time!

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Direct download: DTD_092__6_Strategies_to_Stop_Interruptions_and_Find_Your_Focus.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Many of my clients struggle with the drama created by meetings. Either they have too few and there’s constant chaos. No one knows what’s going on, miscommunication is rampant, the world of assumption is thriving and none of the employees know or trust each other.

Or, they have too many meetings. They read a book or blog post once that said they should have a meeting once a week so they have it. They come up with an agenda last minute, struggle for content, hope people will go on tangents so the time will be filled up, spend lots of time complaining or eating cake but little time doing anything productive. The team grumbles about the waste of time or relishes the “free” time the ineffective meeting represents.

Do either of these sound familiar?

Meetings are essential! You just have to do them well. The key to a great meeting begins with its purpose. Never meet just to meet. Know the purpose so you can evaluate whether or not you need to have it. Some things you are doing in a meeting now could be done more effectively another way.

Here’s some motivation for you. Have you ever stopped to think about how much a meeting costs? Look around the room and estimate the hourly rate of each employee. Divide by 60 to get the rate per minute. Now multiply by the number of unproductive minutes. Yep, it’s costing you or your employer a pretty penny! And if they are causing drama that extends beyond the meeting it’s really a waste of money!

So, ready to evaluate your meetings now?

Look at the reason for the agenda item. I’m going to share a list of what I think are good reasons to meet…….at times. It’s not a 100% comprehensive list but I think it covers a lot of the most popular reasons for meeting. And your objective should drive the content, the feel, the flow, everything. A meeting can have several objectives. Just make sure they are clear to you and your participants.

  1. Connecting: you want employees to know one another as humans. Trust comes form time spent together. Time to connect and know one another is a great reason to have periodic meetings.

  2. Sharing information: you may need to have a meeting to share information but you might be able to share in a more efficient way. Often I find my clients are sharing basic information in a meeting as a way to hold assure they are receiving it so they can be held accountable. There are other ways to achieve the same objective. Send via email with a deadline for reading. Create a subject line that alerts them and put the deadline right there. Have them reply back or fill in a poll or initial a document once they’ve read it over and KNOW what’s there.

    If the information will require a Q & A period, extensive explanation, might be met with some push back then, yes, pull everyone together so that all hear the same facts and can benefit from the same Q & A.

  3. Decision making: this is a great reason to have a meeting if you need to negotiate, discuss, share perspectives. You can explore digital idea generation and opinion sharing but in person or digital meeting is usually a great way to go. Just make sure that the actual decision makers are in the meeting so you don’t have to rehash a conversation to make something happen.

  4. Creative Planning: if you need input, differing perspectives, idea generation I would call this a great way to spend time in a meeting. You get that added collective brain as people bounce ideas around. Whether your pulling together during a project or coming up with the next great product for your business, pulling the team together for this work is a great use of time. I just caution that you always want to end a generative discussion with a plan for action after. How will you assure some momentum forward. It’s fun to brainstorm but then make sure you do something with it. Who needs to make a decision or take some action after the meeting?

  5. Resolving Challenges: whether they are process or people challenges, yes, you need to pull people together for some good communication that includes verbal and nonverbal cues. A meeting is key to resolving issues.

  6. Questions: if there are indications that your team is confused, bringing everyone together is a great way for all to benefit from hearing the information together. Many will share the same question. If, as a leader, you can anticipate the questions, an FAQ emailed out or placed on your intranet might also do the trick without a meeting.

  7. Education: this is another great way to spend meeting time. Whether it’s pulling everyone together for a webinar or to have a co-workers teach a new technique, learning with your team is an important activity. Let everyone hear the information together and benefit from questions, participation and group practice activities.

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Direct download: DTD_091__Do_You_Really_Need_a_Meeting.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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It’s time to take an inventory. How often is it fear that stops you in your tracks? How many excuses do you make to avoid doing what you fear?

We all have them, some activity, conversation, task that we don’t want to do. What would your life look like if you started busting through those fears? How different would it be? What have you missed out on, avoided that could have been great? What avoidance tactics have altered the course of your life and not in a good way?

Fear can be big an overpowering. And, as humans, we will take the path of least resistance unless there is a catalyst.

I share a story about my son to illustrate what fear can look like in our lives. Left unchecked it has a tendency to grow.

When he was young, my son had a fear of thunderstorms. Not unusual. He was too young to understand what was going on so to him it was a lot of noise. At first, he just needed to be cuddled or expressed concern when there was a storm. Over time he began to head for cover in our basement when he heard thunder. Once when we were camping in our RV I woke to find him sleeping in a storage area under the couch. He was trying to shield himself from all the noise.

As he grew so did his fear. Soon he was feeling afraid when it rained. Rain might bring thunder.   He would hide in the basement.

Then clouds began to scare him. Clouds might bring rain and rain might bring thunder. He would hide in the basement.

Then he became fearful when there was wind. Wind might bring clouds, clouds could bring rain and rain might mean thunder. He would hide in the basement.

I watched as this fear grew and grew. It was painful.   Thankfully, he has worked his way back through the fears and does fine during storms now. And he understands the science behind the noise.

Where is fear doing something similar in your life? It might not be storms but something else. In the show notes I have a graphic of all kinds of different fears that often plague adults.

Where is fear shifting the trajectory of your work or life?

Where is it growing like a blob?

What impact is it having?

Today I am asking you to commit to one Risk per day.

Not a physical risk like skydiving or a roller coaster

Not an Adrenaline Rush risk.

No, I am asking you to get out of your comfort zone. Do that thing that you’ve been avoiding. Begin to expand your life one action at a time.

  • Make that call,
  • take that class,
  • go to that event,
  • have that conversation
  • Go it alone somewhere
  • Admit the wrong
  • Ask for help
  • Read a chapter in the book
  • Make the investment
  • Make that presentation
  • Ask for that raise
  • Make that request
  • Set that boundary
  • Share your opinion

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Direct download: DTD_090__Is_Fear_a_Factor_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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As you listen to conversations in a restaurant or a conference room doesn’t it seem like people everywhere are in competition to see who is busier? Technology is wonderful and has created efficiency and mobility. However, too many of us are filling every moment with value add activities, eeking out every morsel of output from every minute of every day.

Joshua Becker Website Becoming Minimalist Best selling author “Simplify and Clutter free with Kids” http://www.becomingminimalist.com/

In a recent blog post he shared the “9 Hidden Lies that Keep our Schedules Overwhelmed”

  1. Accolades will bring fulfillment.
  2. Money will bring happiness.
  3. I don’t have a choice.
  4. I’m more productive if I’m busy.
  5. I am needed.
  6. Everything is important.
  7. I need to be busy to keep up with everyone else.
  8. Busy makes me look more important.
  9. Quietness is laziness. 
  10. Accolades will bring fulfillment. As he describes, people believe that busy means accomplishment and accomplishment equals accolades and fulfillment.I remember years ago seeing an illustration of a very busy maze and one that had a pretty straight shot to the center. At the top it read something to the effect that busy doesn’t always mean productive. And that’s the thing, being busy doesn’t mean you are getting anything done. Or, perhaps you are getting things done but not the important things. Anyone can stay busy 24/7 but what are you really achieving? If you aren’t using your time effectively you won’t accomplish much no matter the effort. And, even achievement doesn’t guarantee the accolades or gratitude of others. Do your work well and find a why that doesn’t include seeking out the approval or validation from others.

  11. Money will bring happiness. We get caught up in the double misconception first that money will solve all of our problems and make us deliriously happy and second, that there is a direct correlation between busyness and money. Unfortunately, neither is true. As a former single mom I can vouch for this for sure! I was busier than I’d ever been but most of what I did was not to earn money. Constant motion does not guarantee wealth.

  12. I don’t have a choice.Many of us live over-busy lives because of the expectations and demands of others. Some of us create the chaos ourselves thinking there are no other options. I teach my clients that the mere fact of living from the belief that you have no choice, that victim mentality, will create more stress and overwhelm. You always have options. Are there negative or unpleasant consequences to the alternative? Possibly. But you are empowered to choose a new path. Avoid the phrase “I have to” to see how different it can feel. From an empowered place of other things are possible see what creative changes you can make.

  13. I’m more productive if I’m busy.I always say you can full tilt for a sprint but not a marathon. Yes, getting in the zone fully focused you can be very productive. But you must have periods for rest and rejuvenation. Check out the book “The Power of Full Engagement”. They help business people adopt the strategies used by world class athletes. Key to success, full focused action with built in periods of rest.

  14. I am needed. Some people need to be needed and that desire drives them to say yes to any request. I always tell my clients, “others will fill up every moment of your life if you let them.” If you always say yes you will be known as the go to person and more people will follow. Be intentional about where you give your time and serve from the heart rather than to fill that void of I am needed.

  15. Everything is important. I still love the illustration that Stephen Covey used years ago in his “7 Habits of Highly Effective People” videos. He had a container with rocks, one with sand and one with water. He asks participants to come up and fit everything in one container. Adding the large rocks to the sand does not work but start with the rocks and fit the smaller stuff around it and more is accomplished. If you take the time to figure it out some things are much more important than others.   Unless you are intentional with your time, however, the little stuff that comes at you monopolizes all of your time. Emails, phone calls, people stopping in, other people’s agendas. In this age of technology we are plugged in 24/7. We have more requests and information coming at us constantly. And its presence doesn’t make it important. You must decide ahead what takes precedent.

  16. I need to be busy to keep up with everyone else. We get constant, edited windows into each other’s lives. Facebook and reality television make it feel like everyone else is doing more, enjoying more, earning more. That “reality” isn’t real. They are specially selected tiny windows into other people’s lives. You aren’t competing with their truth.

  17. Busy makes me look more important.I just covered this topic in my last episode. People sometimes concoct or create busyness to appear important. Meanwhile they just looked frazzled and disrespectful. Being intentional with your time, prioritizing well and handling what you choose to take on with grace is far more impressive.

  18. Quietness is laziness. It seems like the entire world is in a competition for who can be busiest, he or she who gets the most done wins. The goal is efficiency and effective use of time.   We forget that effective use of time can be about sleeping, reading, contemplating, being. How often do we forget to just be in the moment? I often coach clients through periods of transition, which require times of quiet contemplation.   In our active society this can breed guilt so I encourage them to give themselves grace and allow for those necessary times of quiet. I’ve coined a phrase that helps them realize that the quiet is actually doing. I call it the cocoon phase.  Quiet is not lazy. Quiet is necessary.

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Direct download: DTD_89_Are_You_the__I_m_too_Busy__Bee_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Are you one of those chronologically challenged people? The ones constantly running into meetings exclaiming “sorry”, as you move to find a seat? Or, do your friends and family just roll their eyes as you explain, once again that “traffic was terrible” or “I got lost” as you maneuver your way through the group?

Tardiness creates drama and is a sign of disrespect. And don’t underestimate the negative impact that chronic lateness creates! You need to do all in your power to be on time! I have coached people with this affliction and found varied reasons for it.

Here are some of the main culprits I’ve helped clients overcome. Do you struggle with any of these? As always, get real. You have to acknowledge something before you can change it.

  1. You don’t gage time well. You aren’t realistic about how long things will take or how much travel time is required.
  2. You get lost in a current task and time slips away. You look up to see that there is zero possibility of arriving on time.
  3. You like to seem important and arriving late to a meeting or gathering proves that you have many things on your plate. People should just appreciate that you’ve blessed them with your presence at all.
  4. You are completely disorganized with your calendar and have no idea what’s on it or when. It has totally gotten away from you.
  5. You don’t say no appropriately so are constantly overscheduled. Maybe you don’t even bother to check before you say yes yet again.   You’d feel bad saying no. You’ll just figure it out later.
  6. You just don’t care. You are a Type B personality to the Nth degree. You’ll get there when you get there. You have no idea why so many people let time rule their lives.

Unless you are of the just don’t care variety you are probably experiencing drama yourself as you try to maneuver through a too full calendar. If you’re the ego later your stress might be in finding things to do to continually appear busy.

And the people who are waiting for you are feeling stress. If you are an important part of the meeting you may be wasting everyone’s time. They can’t finalize a conversation or make a decision without you and have to wait and then spend additional time summarizing what’s already happened. Or, your family and friends held up dinner or waited to cut the cake or started without you but missed your presence once again.

It’s a sign of disrespect too. You are saying that you are more important than other people. Anyone can be late for a meeting or can over schedule. It takes intentional action to avoid it.

When I work with leaders who are chronically late I give them these strategies.

  1. You don’t gage time well: Reality check your time estimates. Create your initial estimate and then tack on some extra time. If you have repeating tasks keep track so that you have a reference for next time. Have a colleague or friend who is notoriously on time review your estimates. Or, if you have an admin give them more control over your schedule.

    For travel times add 10 to 15 minutes additional for every half an hour the travel should take. If you’re in an area with extra heavy traffic or it’s rush hour you will need to tack on more. And make sure to factor in time to get into the building. If you have to hit the 20th floor you’ll need time to park in a large lot or structure, wait for the elevator and take the ride up.
    Getting places early feels REALLY good! I’m an efficiency junky and also a freak about being on time. How do I deal with the extra time I have when arriving early? I always travel with portable, quick tasks to do. I can still be efficient with my time without the stress of running just on time or late.

  2. You get lost in a current task and time slips away: if this is you there’s a super quick fix. Just set an alarm on your phone. Determine what time you need to be done, pick a catchy tune, utilize the self discipline to stop when you need to and you’ve got it.
  3. You like to seem important: get over yourself. The truth is, everyone in that meeting or event had many other things they could have been doing with their time too. You don’t look busy and important you just look rude.

    It is way more impressive to juggle many things well. Be intentional about what you commit to and follow through on your word.

    I remember the year I was getting married. I was a single mom, business owner, Board member and helping to start a non-profit. I made it to my kids’ activities and arrived early to all of my professional commitments while still managing to plan a wedding. I said no where I needed to and honored the commitments I made by juggling my calendar. You can get a lot done while still respecting yourself and others!

  4. You are completely disorganized with your calendar: Find a system that works and stick to it. If you have an admin who can own this for you give up the fight. Or, perhaps he or she is the one creating the chaos by overbooking you. If this is the case, get in control. Create specific rules about the number of appointments, after work obligations, breakfast meeting per week, etc. And then, get in the habit of checking it before you add anything to it.   And you must check it throughout each day or at least first thing in the morning. And, again, be intentional about to what you commit.

    Years ago when I was just starting my business I did struggle with this a little bit. I had been a stay at home mom for a few years with just a few play dates and an occasional pediatrician appointment on the calendar during the day.   I remember missing a very important phone conference call.   It was the very early stages when I still maybe had one meeting to track every couple of weeks. I was not yet back in the habit of checking my calendar everyday nor keeping track of time for anything other than nap or snack times. I had to re-learn. That one miss and I was back on track!

  5. You don’t say no appropriately so are constantly overscheduled:   focus on the stress and overwhelm this causes in your life. You need to build the motivation to start saying no appropriately.

    Here’s one strategy I teach. Buy yourself time by telling someone you need to check your calendar. You should be doing that anyway! This will give a quick phrase to help you breathe and be intentional.

  6. You just don’t care. If this is you, you need to find a way to care or you will never be motivated to change. Since being late is probably not causing you any stress can you think about what it’s doing to other people? Are they feeling disappointment or stress? Can you think back to important events you’ve missed? Have you lost any jobs or professional opportunities? Have any of your relationships been negatively impacted?

    If you can muster the motivation then you can deploy some of the strategies I’ve included here.

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Direct download: DTD_088__6_Key_Causes_of_Chronic_Lateness_and_How_to_Overcome_Them.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Too many of us spend our lives saying, “I’ll be happy when…..”

Fill in the blank:

  • I get in shape,
  • My kids get a little older
  • I find a husband
  • My business is bigger
  • I have more time
  • I lose weight
  • I have a bigger house
  • I take my dream vacation
  • My family stops being so dysfunctional
  • My employees listen better

I have a teen son who spends every season wishing for the next season to hurry up and get here. I worry that he’ll never take the time to enjoy the moment, feel gratitude for what had him excited for the winter, summer, spring or fall to get here.

And it’s not just happiness that eludes us. You could fill in the blanks with other similar statements. I couldn’t add them all in the title. It would be WAY too long!

  • I’ll feel successful when
  • I’ll be complete when
  • I’ll feel good about myself when
  • I’ll be fulfilled when
  • I’ll celebrate when
  • I’ll focus on me when
  • I’ll have life balance when
  • I’ll vacation when
  • I’ll get that education when

What is that elusive positive emotion you are waiting to experience? What can you focus on to get there in this moment?

If you’ve been saying I will feel happy when…..what can make you happy now? What have you achieved that should help you feel successful today? Listen to my gratitude episode. Shift your focus in a moment to what can make you feel fulfilled, successful and happy. Feel content and positive where you are and then set your sights on the next adventure:
Episode #60 – You Can Choose Gratitude Everyday
http://goo.gl/OtALSZ

Are there at least some small steps you could start making right now?

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Direct download: DTD_087__I_ll_Be_Happy_When.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 7:55am EDT

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As always, In the Defeat Your Drama segments, I will provide solutions based on the information provided. I will obviously not have full details so will provide customized strategies based on what you share. Always consider your own specific circumstances before taking any action. These are suggestions not guarantees.

Emily, it sounds like you are in a tough and frustrating spot. So sorry for this! There are still some strategies that you can try. It does seem like you and your team have tried everything within your control to help her change. If she’s staying then we need to identify what is still in your control.

#1 Make it as Small as Possible

If your co-worker is going to stay and continue behaving the way she is then all of that is out of your control at this point. You want to stay in your job out of a passion for the non-profit’s work. The goal is to see if you can make this situation at all palatable. You want to stay but can not with your current level of frustration. You can only change what you can control and your focus is something you can control.

Right now it sounds like there is a constant focus on your coworker and her negative behavior. Both from you and your team. You can’t control your team but you can control you. In your mind, make her as small as possible. Put her in a circle in your mind. You can literally visual her as a tiny, tiny little being. Make her smaller and smaller and quieter and quieter. See her inside a tiny, tiny little contained circle.

Now, make the mission of the non-profit and the important work that you get to do as big as possible. In your mind visualize that getting bigger and bigger and bigger. Put it in a giant circle.

Now visualize that giant circle next to the tiny, tiny circle that contains this woman. She’s a tiny little ant next to a universe.

Practice that visual.

Now, bring it into real life. In every moment you get to choose what you focus on. Everyone is in an uproar over this woman, understandably. You are sharing stories, cleaning up her messes, wishing she weren’t there, wanting her to behave differently, collecting her issues, thinking about them, talking about them.

She his monopolizing your focus.

I’m not saying it will be easy, but it is doable   Just STOP.

Ignore her. Make her small. Stop getting frustrated when you have to clean up her mess. I’m not saying it isn’t frustrating. But the reality is whether you are focusing on it and frustrated or ignoring it she is the same. Your frustration does nothing to solve the problem anyway. Pass over that thought and move right on to the work at hand. Visualize the big difference you are making in the world through your work. Place your focus there. Place your focus where you CAN and ARE making a difference. Ignore her and her actions. Place no focus there.

#2 Stop Cleaning up Her Messes

Someone is making the decision to keep her. Is this same person suffering the consequences of this co-worker’s mistakes? Or, is the team doing all of the clean up. I know it is hard, especially when you feel so strongly about the work you are doing. Cushioning a decision maker from the full consequences and dealing with all of them yourselves can sometimes prolong a tough decision. Pain is what moves humans into action. If there is pain on both sides of a decision people have a tendency to stick to the actions that create the least amount of pain or consequences.

There is a reason someone is deciding to keep this employee. I am assuming it’s not about her work ethic. It sounds more like they have guilt or fear. Maybe they fear her defensive response. Perhaps they have guilt because they know she needs the job. The pain of that guilt and fear is bigger than the consequence they are experiencing from her bad behavior. Is that because you guys clean it all up so the organization does not suffer? Does the boss have to deal with the team complaints but not the clean up?

Do what you can to help decision makers feel the full brunt of consequences. Stop being on the clean up crew.

You may even tell them that you can no longer do it. You will do your job to the best of your ability but will no longer clean up her messes. You are overwhelmed, resentful and frustrated. Share what is true. What do you have to lose? You are at your wit’s end. The only chance that you can stay is if something changes. Your change may be the catalyst that makes that transformation happen.

#3 See Her in a Different Light

Part of your frustration is in wanting her to be different. Perhaps you assume she is doing what she’s doing on purpose. Chances are the outcomes she achieves are not what she intends. Instead they are the fall out for the false beliefs, fears, lack of self esteem, whatever is actually driving her. And it might be a sense of entitlement and a desire to do as little as possible. There are some who have that mission.

The truth is, life can’t be very fulfilling for her. She knows she’s not doing a good job. She knows she’s trying to stay stuck and hanging on by a thread where she is. She’s working hard and expending a lot of energy to control what she can and keep things status quo.

I’m not trying to help you excuse away what she’s doing. It is a shame. But for your own level of satisfaction and nothing more, can you feel sorry for her or find her actions ridiculously funny? Is it possible for someone to be this delusional?

If you can find humor or empathy rather than frustration the situation may begin to be more palatable. And this can help you stay in a job you otherwise love.

#4 Leave

If all else fails, you can’t make the issue small and focus on other things, you can’t find empathy or humor, you can’t ignite the desire for change in the leaders by allowing them to feel the consequences. If the frustration is at a level that you can no longer tolerate then the option for your sanity and enjoyment of life is to leave. Use your gifts and all that you have to offer to an organization that values hard work and a focus where it should be. An organization that does not tolerate drama.

It is possible that your resignation would ignite a fire in the leaders who are allowing the behavior to continue. I wouldn’t suggest giving an idle threat but if you are truly at that point and find no other options let the leaders know. And maybe, just maybe, they’ll do what they must.

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Direct download: DYD_086__I_Have_to_Babysit_My_Coworker_and_Fix_Her_Mistakes.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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We often have a tendency to be so hard on ourselves. Many of my clients begin sessions lamenting a failure or missed deadline. And time and time again my request to them is, “Give yourself grace!”

If there is something to be learned, a change you are working towards, or a repeating pattern certainly feel the pain for a bit, muster some of that motivation to do what you must. Beyond that, however, you are just wasting time and energy that could be used to strategize a solution or create a new game plan.

First, perfection is rarely achievable. They celebrate the perfect bowling score for a reason. It doesn’t happen that often – or does it? I certainly wouldn’t consider myself a bowling expert. I know I celebrate when I hit a score over 100. But I digress.

Waiting to celebrate only when you’ve achieved perfection is a tough way to live. Give yourself grace!

Sometimes our wiring gets in the way. You can’t change how you are wired you can only create work arounds when how you are wired doesn’t’ serve you. Give yourself grace!

For instance, if you are a type A personality, this probably serves you well in many situations.   You get things done, you are on time for meetings, you have lots of bandwidth so can handle lots of projects at once. Your energy can seem endless at times. Great!

Now, what if you are a Type A personality who has to wait to make a big deal happen. You have to wait through the process of due diligence, wait through the process of negotiation……….all while your desire for instant gratification gnaws at you.

Your Type A wiring can make things difficult under this circumstance. Don’t beat yourself up, Give Yourself Grace! You can’t change how you are wired. And you don’t want to drive yourself crazy. You’ll have to come up with some creative work arounds to keep your mind off things while you wait for the process to unfold.

Sometimes things happen that are out of our control and can cause us to miss the goal of perfection.

If you are a regular listener to my podcast you may have noticed that I did not publish episodes on my normal schedule recently. I missed one……..Yep, I did!

Recently, many things happened that were out of my control. One on top of the other.

Hard drive crashed causing lost time taking it to the Apple store.

Lost productivity from being without it for a few days

Time to re-load everything and get re-organized

Searching for a lost file that I will talk about in a minute

About the time I got it back up and running my son got sick.

He had a temperature over 104. This took lots of my time as I dropped everything else to care for him, created worry and lost sleep as the spike happened late in the evening, as they always seem to.

I did hate to miss. But I am giving myself grace! I made choices that led to this outcome but I wouldn’t change them. I could do nothing about the lap top and I would never put publishing a podcast ahead of taking care of my sick son. So here I am. The reality is I can beat myself up or I can be okay with it. Neither changes the reality. Either way, the time has past and I didn’t get it done. Nothing I can do about it now. Time to move on.

And speaking of that crashed hard drive. It contributed to a flurry of activity that served to shift my focus. During the crash I lost a very important file. I am normally so careful about where I save things. I backup and double back up. Especially when it’s a very big project. And this one was. I’m working on a new book, my third. I used to constantly email myself the file so that I’d have it saved on my computer, backed up on an external hard drive and alive and well in the cloud as an email attachment.

I’ve been using Google Drive for a few years now and that has made things much easier. The file lives in the cloud, on my laptop and my PC. That’s still not enough, though! I also periodically copy and paste the entire drive to the desktop of my PC which also backs up to Mozy every night. And then, just for good measure, about once a month I back up my Macbook Pro to an external hard drive. My files are quadruple backed up. And yet, somehow, this file, this very important file, is lost. Thankfully, not totally. However, the most recent version I could find is months old. Somehow, I must have inadvertently saved that important file directly to my laptop rather than to Google Drive. Something I have not done with anything else, to my knowledge.

I must admit, I am not totally there yet. It is still really fresh. But I’m about to stop wracking my brain trying to figure out how it could happen, about to stop beating myself up for a foolish, foolish error, fully give myself grace and move on. I need to muster all of my creative energy to re-construct what I’ve lost and move on to completion.

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Direct download: DTD_085__You_Failed_to_be_Perfect____Give_Yourself_Grace.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 8:00am EDT

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The way we process our life experiences and build relationships is through our use of language. The words we use create vision, emotion and sometimes even physical reaction. That’s whether they are spoken or just live within our thoughts. I recommend that you pay close attention to the language you are using and modify where necessary.

When you are communicating your goals or just thinking to yourself about your future, what words do you use? Do you say, “I will probably get that done”? Or, “I should do that”? If you speak like this you might as well be saying, “I won’t get that done.”

And shoulding on anything creates a victim mentality. Own it! Do you need to do that thing or not.

Watch the language you use around your choices. For instance, if there is a networking breakfast at 7:30 am you could say, “No, I can’t go, I have to get my kids to school in the morning.” Over time, however, the concept of “can’t” may add frustration, or worse, could build resentment against your kids! Your language is taking away your power and creating the illusion that you have a life of boundaries outside of your control. And the truth is, you could go to the breakfast. There would be SOME way to work it out. It might be very hectic, you would have to ask a neighbor for a favor or pay additional money to a child care provider of some sort.   But, if you really needed or wanted to go, and the benefits outweighed the costs, you could make it happen and get there. So, really, you are choosing to prioritize that time with your kids or want to avoid the extra navigation or expense. Use language that is consistent with this fact. “I choose not to attend the networking breakfast at this time.” Now you are empowered. I have many choices, and this is the one I pick.

And stay away from the term “I will Try” altogether! There is no action in trying. This is one of my favorite illustrations.

Hold your pen up in the air and try to put it down. If you actually put the pen down you are not “trying”. You actually did it. Trying to put your pen down means holding there continuously.

This exercise shows that trying is no action and that sometimes it takes more effort to “try” to do something than it does to actually do it. You are expending more energy holding your pen up when you “try” to put it down than you would if you just set the thing down.

Using tentative language carries no power. No sense of certainty. You are letting yourself off too easily. Playing life to win requires persistent determination. The language you use needs to mirror this.

Instead, use words of action, certainty and ownership. Say, I will do that. And be specific. What will you do and by when. Or, “I procrastinated”, rather than, “procrastination happened.” And, my personal favorite, “I commit to that.” Or, “that is my commitment.” We feel commitment in our bodies. So much more powerful than I will try, yes?

Words of action, certainty and ownership are winning words and will move you forward as a winner in your life. They will move your forward towards your goals and will transform your relationships. Communicating authentically will build trust and connection.

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Direct download: DTD_084__Use_Tenacious_Language_to_Create_Ownership_and_Action.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:11am EDT

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Tom from Michigan Writes:

My employee, I’ll call him Bill, is causing a ton of problems. He’s rude, he’s spending a bunch of time on the internet doing who knows what everyday. He’s barely getting any work done. The problem is he’s the only one who knows the software he uses to enroll people in our program. He also handles some really important billing stuff.   What can I co?

As always, In the Defeat Your Drama segments, I will provide solutions based on the information provided. I will obviously not have full details so will provide customized strategies based on what you share. Always consider your own specific circumstances before taking any action. These are suggestions not guarantees. 

Tom, I’m so sorry that you are in this situation. Let’s get you some customized strategies.

I actually see this issue often. A client tells me that no one else knows the job or has the passwords. You are in a predicament. There are some solutions. It just might take a bit of time to solve.

I preach the importance of documenting processes and information often! As a matter of fact, in episode 25 the topic was Document for Ease of Mind, Teaching Tools and Freedom.   Here’s a link if you haven’t already heard it http://goo.gl/iuSjcG

But, shoulda, woulda coulda – here you are.

Employees usually are very aware that they are not doing a good job. Some who want to continue their poor behavior will use strategies to create the opportunity to continue without negative consequence. One common strategy is to garner power by hoarding information. You can become indispensible if no one else knows your job.

It sounds like this is exactly what you are experiencing.

I have three strategies for you. The first two will actually help you avoid this circumstance in others for the future.

#1 Team Documentation

I recommend that you begin an initiative to have everyone in the office begin documenting their work processes, creating FAQ’s, organizing passwords.   You can’t single out just Bill. He’d get skittish and avoid this project like the plague. However, if everyone is engaged he might make some progress.

#2 Job Shadowing

Begin a job shadowing program with a goal of providing back up for everyone in the office. Again, you can’t single out Bill. His job security comes from his unique knowledge. He’d be tipped off if you focused on his job only. Emphasize the benefits to employees; ease of mind while on vacation, uninterrupted sick days, for instance. This might give you a fighting chance to get it done.

#3 Terminate and Figure it Out

This one might be too brutal to make happen.   But, I’m throwing it out there because it might be a possibility. I don’t know your full circumstance. It is possible that you are telling yourself it is impossible to terminate “Bill”. But is it? Stop and consider life without him. Would it be glorious? How difficult will it really be to try to figure out what he does and what he knows without his participation? Sometimes we create an obstacle bigger than it really is when we have discomfort from guilt or fear.

The first two strategies will take some time. If he is creating enough collateral damage you may not want to wait. Get real about the full impact you would experience by letting him go immediately. Then weigh the pros and cons. Negative impact from having to figure it all out against the positive impact of no longer dealing with his antics and the full fall out he creates for your team, your business, your customers. How would it feel to no longer have to waste money paying someone to surf the internet rather than work?

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Direct download: DTD_083__How_Can_I_Fire_this_Employee.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Recently I was meeting with the COO for a client company to discuss some issues I had identified. The company had a stated desire to improve productivity numbers and yet the manager charged with the responsibility had been unable to generate improvement. Why? Because his boss wanted to approve any changes in the department prior to implementation. Okay, a bit micro-managy potentially.

The bigger problem, however, every time the manager shared a recommendation the boss said, “Sounds good, we’ll talk about it.” And then there was NEVER time to “talk about it.”

This manager was beyond frustrated to say the least!

Ummmmm……if you want to insert yourself into the process as a leader you have to make the time to make things happen. You must create the foundation to support your constant involvement. You can’t have it both ways. The boss was a brake system. Nothing was moving forward.

As I shared the situation with the COO I got the visual and shared, “You’re telling him you want the water to boil but his boss is blowing out the flame!”

Accountability with no opportunity is one of the worst positions to be in as a leader. This company has a passionate loyal manager with the knowledge and desire to do a great job but his hands are tied.   And he’s getting the double whammy affect, the frustration of not getting to implement the ideas he has and the hand slap of not meeting his prescribed objectives.

It’s not a novel problem. I have seen it many, many times.  So, today I ask you to consider, where are you stopping the forward momentum of fired up employees? Where have you given your team specific objectives but put on the brakes before they could make any change?

Where are YOU blowing out the flame?

Where must you remove yourself from the process to ignite forward momentum? A key to great leadership is to become a resource that allows others to succeed.

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Direct download: DTD_082__Are_you_Blowing_out_the_Flame_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Bust the 4 D’s = in there share a simple mindset tweak and some phrases to use –

One of my managers had to do a conversations the same evening as the webinar!  She was very pleased to report that she handled the deflection and denial and was ready for it! -Mary

Bust the 4 D’s of Discipline Avoidance http://www.defeatthedrama.com/transform

6 Simple Steps of Great Delegation episode # 2 http://goo.gl/2NI1L5

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Direct download: DTD_081__Often_a_Simple_Tweak_is_all_it_Takes_to_Overcome_a_Challenge.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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I live in an area that occasionally receives lots of snow in a short period of time. This weekend was one of those occasions. We got dumped on for hours causing many schools and businesses to close. Now, I live on a court that is situated off of a side street that horse shoes a semi-main road. In other words, I am a bit off the beaten path. No road that I’m on or near is considered a priority. I tell you all of this to say that usually when we get a lot of snow like we did this weekend, we end up being snowed in…….for a while.

In my years living here I have seen garbage trucks get stuck in the court, some utility trucks and one time a plow that scooped it’s way a bit too far into the court got stuck. He was trying to plow the road and steer clear of the court but missed. My neighbor helped dig him out and so, out of appreciation and possibly a bit of guilt, he ended up plowing us out much earlier than he would have.

Last year we had historical amounts of snow and might have spent weeks snowed in if it weren’t for the efforts of my husband and a neighbor who used their large snow blowers to circle the court again and again and again to create a path large enough for a vehicle to travel in our out of the area. They worked hard to help out all of the neighbors living on the court.

Today we received the best gift! A pickup truck owner with a plow on the front spent about an hour plowing us out. He maneuvered and pushed snow. It was a tedious task.

What does all of this have to do with drama and attitude, you might ask?

Well, it relates to drama because we, unfortunately, have a neighbor not well versed in the art of gratitude. As a matter of fact, he becomes quite negative when receiving a favor. He creates negative outcomes for himself and I think he is completely oblivious. His negativity generates drama and I thought perhaps others could learn from his story.

You see, he seems to live with a fear or paranoia that people are out to get him. He looks for the negative in a situation and reacts with anger and aggression. I watched it happen last year during the big snows and again this week.

As I said, last year my husband and a neighbor spent hours snow blowing a path for the 5 families who live on the court. It was tough, tough work. They were drenched in sweat as they leaned in with all they had into their powerful snow blowers. My neighbor probably should not have even been out there! He’s in his 70’s and has had knee replacement surgery. He walks slowly. It was surprising and a bit concerning to see him working that hard.

As they worked, the wind blew and some snow continued to fall. They blew the snow into the center of the court so had to constantly adjust the machines to aim the snow to the right spot. Occasionally the wind picked up and sent snow flying.

My angry neighbor came outside. Did he say thank you for all the hard work they were doing? No! He yelled at them, stopping them in their tracks, to tell them that a bit of snow was blowing in his driveway as they worked.

Ummmmm…..not nearly as much snow as was present EVERYWHERE around us! They listened, tried to explain that the wind was out of their control, promised to do their best and then got back to work,

Shortly after the twenty something year old son from that house came out, got in his car and got stuck in the court. Great!

My husband and neighbor stopped their work and went to try to help. The son stayed in the car while his 70 something father, 70 something neighbor and my husband all tried to push. The neighbor continued to yell.

The result, my husband and neighbor left them to deal with the stuck vehicle and got back to snow blowing. Who wants to work that hard to get yelled at?

This year as the man in the truck plowed our court that same neighbor stood in his snow-filled driveway, arms folded, waiting for a bit of snow to end up in his drive. I had just returned from running out to give the man a plate of brownies and sat inside thinking, “now what!” I was also thankful that I had shared the brownies. This angry neighbor wouldn’t be the only spokesperson for the court.

The truck owner was taking great care to situate the building piles of snow in between driveways. A tough task in a court lined with houses!

The angry neighbor walked into the street to flag the truck owner down. I could hear his voice and see his gestures but couldn’t make out what he was saying – but it appeared to be……..don’t get anymore snow in my driveway. And his tone was aggressive.

Well, the driver didn’t push snow in front of his driveway but sure wasn’t as careful in that area.

I wouldn’t call the truck driver vindictive. I would say that he just wasn’t as inspired to do his best on that side of the court.

After the brownies, the area on my side was wonderful.

The lessons for you today……..ask yourself, where are you forgetting to acknowledge the intended good deed while focusing instead on a small inconsequential negative outcome?

Did someone bring you coffee but forget the sugar?

Have one of your employees taken initiative to re-organize the supply closet and moved an item to a spot you can’t reach?

Did your team work super hard today but still get a complaint from a disgruntled customer?

An attitude of gratitude takes you farther than a negative one. No, don’t ignore what must change but make sure your focus is on the right place for the best outcomes. You might end up with a pile of snow half covering your driveway….just sayin…….

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Direct download: DTD_080__Is_Your_Attitude_Generating_Drama_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:33am EDT

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Your plugging along working and feeling productive with a vision of an on time exit from work when you look up to see the Workplace Whiner standing in your doorway.

Oh No!! Not now! Not today!

The energy-zapping, soul-sucking minutes that can drag into an hour. Time you can never get back. You want to scream or slam the door in their face but you don’t want them to feel bad……or walk around complaining about you!

Years ago when I worked in an office full time we had an employee who walked around with a coffee cup for hours every day. We called the mug his “decoy”. He’d make it appear as though he was just out on a quick jaunt to refill but this was obviously not his true mission.   Office by office he’d stop to chat, sharing tidbits he’d heard along the way. He was also known as the department spy. The workplace whiner can take many forms. They can be frustrated about co-workers or personal injustices. Whatever the topic, they are breading drama wherever they go.

Many of my clients struggle to avoid the workplace whiner. Here are some of the key strategies I share with them. Pick the one that feels right for you and your circumstance.

1. This one is the least direct but usually yields a good result. A quick excuse stated as you focus intently on your screen or head out the door. “I’m so sorry. I’m on a deadline so can chat for 5 minutes but no more. What’s up?”

I don’t condone lying. So, I’m not really suggesting that you say you are on a deadline when you aren’t. I just think it’s safe to assume that there is always a priority looming when you are at work. You are there to be productive, after all. And just fill in the blank with the actual time frame or leave it out altogether if you prefer to make an instant get away.

2. This option is one that will achieve your end result over time. Ultimately, the workplace whiner is looking for the sympathetic ear. That person who will commiserate with their opinions and validate their misery. They are intentional about their targets. It’s no fun to whine to someone who is coming back at you with butterflies and sunshine. They aren’t looking for a new perspective they seek someone to join them in their funk. So, I suggest that you begin sharing ideas about the more positive perspective they might consider as they describe their negative view. Or, share how wonderful you think that situation sounds or how they might improve the situation with a proactive approach. You won’t be the chosen one for long if you don’t empathize or commiserate.

3. No beating around the bush with this one. The more direct approach that will earn you the quickest retreat is to simply state that you have made it your personal goal to remain focused on all things positive. You’ve given up watching the news and will be happy to engage in problem solving activities but are committed to steering clear of complaining or any other negative, low energy inputs.It will be immediately obvious to even the most self-absorbed whiner that you are not the ideal target. Some will put up a bit of a fight but stand your ground. ‘If you have any positive news to share I am all ears. If not, I need to stop you right there and get back to my work.”

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Direct download: DTD_079__3_Tactics_You_Must_Use_to_Thwart_the_Workplace_Whiner.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Frank Zappa once said, “without deviation from the norm, progress is not possible.”

And then Victor Kiam added a humorous spin, “Even if you fall on your face you’re still moving forward.

My original thoughts about this episode were to encourage forward momentum. Make sure that you are working on something.

But then I started reading up on the well known proverb, “a rolling stone gathers no moss.”

I had assumed that the origin of this proverb was all positive – keep going. Don’t be stagnant. However, the original meaning had a negative connotation; if you keep moving you don’t lay down roots anywhere. You aren’t attached. You won’t be as prosperous.

It got me thinking.

As I thought more I realized that some of my clients suffer from not enough motion while others from too much.

Constant motion brings chaos and chaos creates drama.

Without intentional and targeted action you can have turmoil and be busy but not successful.

So my new insight for the episode is that, as with all things it’s finding the happy balance. You want momentum in moderation.

I’ve had a magnet stuck to the front of my fridge for years that encourages a goal for raising kids, “first you give them roots and then wings.”

I think that’s what we need to do for ourselves too. Create your foundation. Find those things that will be constant; a location, vocation, some friendships, a business, core values, rules of engagement for your life, a general focus or target to work towards. Let one or all of these be your roots. But be sure to sprout some wings. Where do you need to transform? Where is there opportunity to soar, where do you need to learn new strategies or transition your way of thinking or being?

Where do you need to create a goal and stick to it? Where must you invest some time, energy or resources?

The answer to these questions should be aligned with the roots you’ve grown unless it’s time for a complete overhaul of life. And that’s beyond the scope of these insights.

They say you can’t learn to ride a back by sitting in a seminar. And that’s true! So if you’ve been learning some new things aligned with your roots make a commitment to implement!

Create that goal and begin to roll!

Spend even 15 minutes per day learning something new and 15 minutes per day implementing. Let’s see where those wings can take you!

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Direct download: DTD_078__A_Rolling_Stone_Gathers_No_Moss_but_Maybe_You_Want_Some.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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When your team member is employing stay stuck strategies where is their focus?

During a leadership training participants had a big aha moment. It certainly wasn’t on the success of the organization!

Busting Stay Stuck Strategies Episodes: #34, #35, #36, #37

http://goo.gl/SupZkT

http://goo.gl/KnbHBC

http://goo.gl/ZLTlWU

http://goo.gl/L7GaeP

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Direct download: DTD_077__Are_You_Correction_Conversations_Igniting_Change_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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1. People want to Feel Acknowledged & Appreciated
2. Intentional Positive Focus
3. Celebrate Progress
4. Unite as a Team
5. Gratitude
The Gratitude Episode: #60

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Direct download: DTD_076__Use_Celebration_to_Energize_Your_Team.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 2:05pm EDT

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I recently had a little snafu with my schedule and showed up for my son’s Dr. appointment 30 minutes late. Bummer! The earlier time would have been much nicer, actually.

How did it happen?   It was a combination of things.

First, I somehow added the appointment incorrectly in my calendar. I was actually about 10 minutes early for the time I had documented.

Second, the Doctor’s automated appointment reminder system malfunctioned. My phone showed a missed call from the office but there was no message. That message would have brought the error to light in time to make an adjustment in our arrival time. All would have been well.

Okay, so I own my error but did the Office Manager own their error? No.

As a matter of fact, she was a bit ticked at me when we arrived.

Now, I get it. It’s always frustrating when a client, customer or patient is late or misses an appointment altogether. It can throw off your day.

However…….do I think I deserved the greeting I received? No!

And not for the reason you think…….even if they hadn’t also made an error, I believe we still should have arrived to a friendly greeting.

Here’s why.

We’ve been going to that office for years! Lately we’ve been there every 4 to 6 weeks. They know us. And we know them.

We have NEVER missed an appointment and have never been late. In fact, we are almost always 10 or 15 minutes early. It’s a small office so they know this.

We should have a little trust bucket filled to the brim with them. They know that we are respectful of their time and honor our commitments with them.

Think about your personal relationships. Over time, don’t you get to know people? There’s the friend you know you can count on in a pinch, there’s the one you know shows up late no matter what but who has so many other redeeming qualities you love them anyway.   How about the friend who will listen to your problems and offer sound advice?

Isn’t each relationship unique? Don’t you love a relationship where you are known? Where there is a positive history that offers you the chance to receive the benefit of the doubt when make a small mistake?

Food for thought for the day. Are there interactions in your business where you are forgetting to treat your customers individually?

Get to know your customers. If you have a client who is always on time who suddenly arrives a bit late show concern not disdain.   They have a history of respecting your time. Something has probably gone awry.

Acknowledge that customer who comes in every day around the same time to pick up a sandwich or a newspaper. They should be filling up a loyalty bucket with you.

I used to bank with a company that never acknowledged me as a known customer. A colleague who was also a business owner used to laugh about it with me. Between she and her office manager they were in there at least 3 times a week and yet the tellers never knew their names or greeted them any differently than they would a complete stranger.   It wasn’t a very busy branch. No one was looking for preferential treatment. We just wondered what it would take to be treated as a repeat customer? How could we establish a warm teller/customer relationship? What could we do to feel known?

The answer for both of us in this instance was to switch banks. And we did.

If you’ve watched the Today Show over the past 10 years or more you have probably seen Linny. He gained notoriety simply by standing in the crowd outside the studio. They called him the Today Show Super fan. Over time he became known by Today Show staff members and viewers. All he did was show up on time everyday and smile. They began to talk to him during outdoor segments. He was really just a Today Show fan but generated a relationship through his loyalty. They treated him in a special way as a result. When he passed away in 2013 it was a big deal. There was a relationship, he was known.

Let the experiences you have with your customers generate a relationship based on that history.   Have they been a good, loyal customer or a high maintenance one? Get to know a bit about them. At a minimum notice and acknowledge their patterns, tell them it’s nice to see them again or thank you for coming in again.

Acknowledge and appreciate those who respect your business and remain loyal over time. Loyalty means longevity! You want your business to succeed.

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Direct download: DTD_075__Each_Customer_has_a_Unique_Relationship.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Jane from the US asked:

I am being interviewed on the 6th of January for a Director position that will oversee a team that has been full of drama for the past year and a half. I have been informed that some on the team believe I am the reason for the previous directors dismissal, and that if I am to take the position, they won't work for me.

When asked in the interview, "How will you handle or deal with the current "drama" "unstructured" situation in the area?, what is the best way for me to answer?

Hear Kirstens solutions in this episode of Defeat YOUR Drama.

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Direct download: DYD_074__I_Need_a_Defeat_the_Drama_Strategy_for_My_Interview.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Direct download: DTD_073__Why_My_Bank_is_Awesome.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

How to Lose a Customer:
A True Tale of a Courtesy Call Gone Awry

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In theory working with friends seems like it would be great. And, at times it does work out well. However, over and over I find my clients struggling with the negative impact of work friendships.

We spend a lot of time at work so it’s bound to happen. We become friends with people at work. There are many ways you can end up supervising a friend:

  • You worked together, became friends and then you got promoted to their manager
  • You hired a friend thinking they would be great in your department or business
  • You blur the lines with direct reports and start spending time together outside of work. Friendships blossom and so does the drama.

The problem these friendships often breed drama. Here are some scenarios I’ve seen:

  • The line between friend and boss becomes blurred and you let them get away with too much.
  • Or, your employee begins to take advantage of the relationship, expecting preferential treatment and is angry with you for treating them as an employee at work.
  • You spend a lot of time at work rehashing the fun you had over the weekend and planning your next escapade. Other employees become frustrated with your lost productivity.
  • You do play favorites and plan to continue but are becoming annoyed with the jealous or frustrated displays of the rest of the team.
  • You overcompensate and tend to be harsher with your friend/employee, causing tension between the two of you.
  • Perhaps the two of get distracted talking, goofing around or playing practical jokes on each other at work.
  • You have a fight with your friend outside of work over a personal issue and have to work together the next day.
  • The rest of the team has the inaccurate perception that your friend gets preferential treatment despite your best effort.

How do I define drama? If you’ve been listening to this podcast for a while you know that I define it as anything that shifts focus from where it should be; on providing great service.   Friendships will happen at work and you can have friendships without generating drama but you have to have good boundaries and solid ground rules.

  1. No preferential treatment
  2. No extra harsh treatment
  3. No goofing around or re-hashing the weekend’s shenanigans
  4. Treat all employees with respect
  5. Where it may appear that there is preferential treatment be prepared to share a bit more detail.
  6. If the relationship causes too much drama and you are not able to work through the cause, one of you must move or go. I’m talking the extreme scenario here. I hope it’s not necessary but I’ve seen it happen. One of you is interested in keeping the professional relationship and friendship separate while the other is not. Drama ensues. All efforts to minimize the impact fail. The business must win. And if you are the one in the leadership role or are the business owner you don’t want to compromise your position. The threat of job loss must be present and real. If you’ve entered the work/friend zone you have to be willing to go to the mat for your business and hope that the friendship can survive.

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Direct download: DTD_070__Defeat_the_Drama_of_Supervising_Your_Friends.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Are you one of those people who avoid change at all cost? Maybe fear stops you in your tracks or your stubbornness gives you pride. Maybe you celebrate your stagnation.

No matter how change avoidant you are I bet you’ve benefitted from change, perhaps without even knowing it. Change is often good!

Let me illustrate:

  • Are you old enough to remember rotary phones? Do you still use one today or have you moved on?
  • Are you listening to this podcast on the go from your phone, perhaps even from your car?
  • Do you take pictures with your phone?
  • Has your television viewing transitioned to full color, high definition?
  • Are you old enough to have rented a VHS Player to watch movies you rented as a paid member? Ever viewed a movie on the go?
  • Have you ever worn Spanx?

See, regardless of how change avoidant you are you have succumbed. And, in many instances, if you stop to think about it, I bet that change has been good. So, change has been thrust upon you through technological advances.

Where do you need to stop making excuses and start embracing change personally? What excuses have you been using?   Are any of them really valid?

The New Year is upon us and it is time to say I Choose Change!

Did you ever see one of those round wooden “Get a Round To it” coins? Fun play on words and so true.

When you get around to it………

How have you been filling in this blank:   I will ___________________ when I get around to it. (exercise, take that class, eat healthy, write that book, travel to that destination)

Pretend like I’m handing you one of those round to it’s right now.

The truth is, you could be doing more of your get around to it items. You could.

There will never be a perfect time.

What is REALLY stopping you?

Does it need to?

Are there at least some small steps you could start making right now?

Here are some questions to ask to get you moving.   Enlist the help of some trusted advisors. An outside perspective often helps.   I did an episode on the 7 Key Characteristics of a Great Trusted Advisor. Go here if you haven’t heard that one yet: http://goo.gl/gyAemb

  1. What have I learned the hard way and what has it taught me to do differently?
  2. What’s one thing I can add to my life that will make a positive change this year?
  3. What’s one thing I should stop doing that will make a positive change?
  4. What would I try now if I knew I would not fail?
  5. For my life to be perfect what would I need to change?
  6. What are some small changes I can make now to begin to work towards these changes?
  7. What are the excuses I use costing me?

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Direct download: DTD_069__I_Refuse_to_Stay_Stuck__I_Choose_Change.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Many companies have a formal policy that requires employees to keep the specifics about their pay private.

I certainly understand what motivates these policies. Conversations about pay almost always cause drama! However, rarely do these policies serve their purpose. And, often, I find they are enforced more aggressively when there really is no legitimate rhyme or reason for how much employees are paid. In other words, the gag order is created to avoid the drama induced by an unfair pay plan.

The reality is pay is an emotional thing. It’s not JUST about the dollars. AND, probably the more you try to keep it a secret the more they’ll talk about it. It’s just kind of the nature of things. If employees don’t understand how their pay is calculated they won’t feel that their own pay is fair.

I don’t know about you, but I’ve rarely heard anyone say, “they pay me too much.” Either people are quietly neutral about their pay or they are disgruntled about it. Few are singing from the rooftops about their hourly rate or salary.

Another fun fact about compensation, once you provide some kind of compensation it quickly becomes an entitlement. Now they just expect it. Take it away or provide less and…….you’ve got drama.

I’ve spent years working in compensation and have generated calculations that impacted the wages of thousands. I know the emotion that pay practices can ignite! And I’ve learned some strategies to avoid the drama that is always a potential.

So….what can you do to minimize compensation drama?

Here are a few strategies:

  1. Have a rhyme or a reason for how you pay people. Do have pay scales. Pay drama happens when employees feel that their pay is not fair. And fair is a subjective term based on comparisons to others. Fair can be based on internal comparisons, internal equity, or external comparisons, external equity. Are you paying people fairly compared to similar jobs outside of your company? Salary.com is a good place to start if you don’t have access to customized salary data. The jury is out on the accuracy but over the years I’ve found it to be a helpful tool. The reality is, even though compensation is based on numbers it will never be an exact science. There are subjective components to valuing skill sets or responsibilities. Use the data, add or delete value based on your specific jobs, the skills required and the responsibilities and create those pay scales.If you have additional questions or need help contact me Defeat the drama and select the contact tab. As I said, I logged many years as a compensation professional: http://defeatthedrama.com/#contactOnce you have good pay structure assure that you are paying well individually. Within the organization are you providing similar pay for similar jobs, experience, education, quality of work?  Have you brought new employees in higher than long term employees? Do you have family members or friends getting preferential pay treatment? Ask yourself the tough questions and do what you can to rectify the situation. If you are over paying some employees consider “red circling” their pay. This means keeping them at their same rate until or making smaller adjustments until their pay lands within the appropriate pay scale.
  2. Communication – Communication – Communication! Share how you came up with your pay plan. I’ve shared before that in the absence of fact people have a tendency to fill in the spaces with negative assumptions. Trying to keep your pay plans secret creates stress and anxiety and a whole lot of drummed up drama. Have a good rhyme or reason for why you pay what you do and share that information freely. Now, I’m not suggesting you share individual pay information. I am suggesting you share generically how pay is calculated. How did you come up with the pay scales? How do you compare to your competitors and where does an individual employee fall within their pay scale.

  3. Keep pay consistent. If you have a bonus plan communicate how it is calculated and stick to it. In tougher years, through good communication, your employees will know and understand why the bonuses are lower or non-existent. In better years pay the extra with a smile. If the calculations you’ve created and communicated are done right you’ll have plenty of net profit to cover bonuses while still enjoying a healthy business profit. Create the calculations well and then keep them consistent. And especially when it comes to commission based pay, changing the rules often creates a lack of trust. Lack of trust creates drama. Create a plan that assures that the business makes money as your commissioned based people make more money. Too often I’ve heard business owners or leaders say they don’t want their sales force to make too much money. If the pay is proportioned correctly you do want them to make a lot of money. Constantly changing the rules to finagle less pay and you’ll have lots of drama and sales people walking out the door.

  4. Calculate Total Compensation and Communicate it – like I’ve said, pay is an emotional thing. Employees feel valued or devalued based on the price tag you put on them through their pay. Do not underestimate the monetary value of your benefits or other perks. I have implemented total compensation calculations and the results have always been good. The additional investments you make in your employees will raise those numbers. If you are in the U.S., don’t forget the FICA calculations as well. Include everything you possibly can. To include paid holidays, vacation or sick time you can subtract those hours and then divide the salary by hours actually worked.   For example, a full time employee works 2080 hours per year at 40 hours x 52 weeks. Now subtract out 2 weeks vacation and 7 holidays, as a for instance. 17 days x 8 hours = 136 hours. The salary you are paying them including their health insurance is actually based on 1,944 hours per year. Divide annual salary plus benefits, perks, etc. to provide the new hourly rate calculation.That’s probably enough examples. I don’t want to inundate you with numbers in a podcast. It’s probably kind of hard to visualize by listening. Just know that there are lots of ways to play with the numbers and it’s a good idea to help your employees visualize the full value you are providing for them.

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Direct download: DTD_068__Defeat_Your_Compensation_Drama.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Many of my new clients share complaints about employees that will not implement new processes or use new protocols. Teams often seem to do everything in their power to resist change.

Leaders are plagued with comments and complaints like these. Do any sound familiar?

  • No one told me.
  • This doesn’t work.
  • I don’t understand why we have to do this!
  • I keep forgetting.
  • What are we supposed to do after the first part?
  • The old way is way better!
  • I’m not doing it!

My clients are left feeling frustrated, dis-empowered and ready to throw in the towel, resigned to the fact that change will never happen.

Once we dive in to the steps they took to make the change, however, it is easy to identify where they’ve missed some key elements.

If you struggle to get your team to implement change here are six surefire strategies to create team change that sticks.

  1. Get Input Up Front:There are several reasons I recommend including employees before you design change.
    1. First, and most simply, you will have more buy in from your team if they participate in the design of the change.   They will have a vested interest in achieving success.
    2. And, secondly, your employees have a unique perspective. They have valuable insights that can help you.   Participation almost always yields better results. Unless you are with them all day every day there are elements of the job that you are unaware of. They are creating work arounds, overcoming challenges, connecting tasks in ways you are not aware. You want that knowledge and perspective BEFORE you design change. You will want to incorporate their ideas for a better result.
    3. Last, your team will feel acknowledged and respected if you ask for their opinions. Requiring change for a job they do daily without being consulted at all feels like a slap in the face. They will feel devalued. Ask their opinion and they will feel like an important part of the process.
  1. Communicate the Why’s and What’s:The Why: Why the change is happening. And if you have included them in the design of the change include the why’s of using or not using their suggestions. If you ask the questions it creates the expectation that you will actually use their opinions. If you can NOT you must acknowledge their suggestions, share your appreciation and express why you were not able to incorporate them.That What is what’s in it for them. This will provide some motivation for the change. Will they gain efficiency? Will their job become easier? Will they experience some job enrichment?   Will they be able to provide better service and happier customers?
  1. Document Well Part of the design strategy for change should include documenting the change. What will be the new process? This will provide for visual learning and will be an important resource for training for initial roll out and on going.
  1. Acknowledge that Change Can be HardCall out the elephant in the room. Some of the resistance is resistance to change period and has nothing to do with whether the change will be good or bad. All change is stressful for some people. Show empathy, acknowledge it and then set the expectation that change will still happen. We must move on. If we didn’t embrace change all of us would still be using corded, rotary telephones. Does anyone even still own one of those?
  1. Deadline and Documentation for Read it, Know it, Own ItMany of my clients struggle to know whether an employee has received full communication about a change. They’ll roll out the change in a staff meeting and have no documentation about who was in attendance. Or, in larger organizations the communication has happened over email. They aren’t sure whether it was read or digested. I always recommend creating a roll out process that can be documented with specific deadlines for “Read it, Know it, Own it.”If you use email, for instance, include a deadline by which every employee must read it, understand, ask questions if necessary and then implement fully. Require them to send you an email response indicating they have read and fully understand the change.If you roll out a change in a staff meeting make sure to document who is there and then provide the documentation about the change in an email or a binder after the meeting for those who were not in attendance. Again, give a deadline for playing catch up from the missed meeting. They must get with you the leader, talk to a co-worker, read and understand, do whatever is necessary to gain a full understanding of the change by the deadline. Request that they sign a log or send you an email when the task is fully complete.Following a procedure like this will help you avoid the, “No one told me” excuse. They are responsible for Reading it, Knowing it, Owning it – or asking questions if they must.

  2. Hold Them AccountableOnce an employee has acknowledged reading, knowing, owning hold them accountable for adhering to the change. Give a little grace if there is a learning curve and your team is trying to make the transition smoothly. But stick with it and don’t let them slide back. Do ask whether they have any input for required tweeks. Sometimes the design of change is not fully achieved without a trial and error period. A complaint must include an idea for how to make it better.

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Direct download: DTD_067_Six_Strategies_to_CreateTeam_Change_that_Sticks.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Do you set goals and fall short of meeting them?

Do you make promises to co-workers and then fail to follow through?

Are daily choices inconsistent with the outcomes you say you’d like to create in your work or life?

You are not alone. Whether it’s a New Year’s resolution to get to the gym 4 times per week or a commitment to an employee that you’ll be better at delegating tasks with a reasonable amount of lead time, we humans have a tough time breaking bad habits and implementing the new and improved.

We have great intentions. We just get stuck. And before we know it 5 months have passed without any noticeable change or personal growth.

So, based on the title of this episode you might be thinking, “oh yay! She’s going to tell me it’s okay. Everyone does it anyway. Move on and just be okay with how things are.”

Sorry. That’s not the emphasis today.

Yes, I will still encourage you to stop beating yourself up when you fail to meet a goal or a deadline. However, the reasoning is different. If you’ve been listening for a while or have worked with me you know that I’m all about deafeating drama. Beating yourself up is just a waste of time. And it shifts your focus away from meeting your objective.

You see, when you are calling yourself names and mentally berating yourself, where is your focus? On you and how bad you are.

Is this motivating? No.

Is this time spent on creating a new plan that DOES move you towards your goals? NO.

Beating yourself up is just self-induced drama. It shifts your focus away from where it needs to be; on making the plan you must implement to meet your objectives.

And, too often our berating tends to lend the opportunity to give ourselves a pass.  Do any of these sound familiar?

  • I do this everytime. I’m just not cut out to be successful.”
  • Why bother even trying? I’m just setting myself up for failure.
  • I have no will power.
  • I’m a complete loser!
  • I suck

Our mental beat down can become an excuse, a long term justification.

And how motivated do you feel while engaging in this kind of negative self talk?   Get over yourself and get on with it!

Now, I don’t want you to completely skip over the feeling of dissapointment or the loss of what could have been. Experience the pain to motivate you to new momentum. So, notice it quickly but don’t park there. Don’t let a dissapoinment become a long term beat down.

When a client shares their story of a missed deadline or failed commitment my first question is always, “how does it feel?”

If it’s a failed commitment to another person I also want them to think how that person might feel or what their team might be saying to each other. I also ask them to think about how they might feel if someone failed to follow through for them in the same way.

This helps build the motivation for change. The goal is to reignite the commitment.

From there we move quickly to, “Now, what do you want to do about it?”

  • What did you learn? This is an important question. Perhaps you can glean some additional information about structure required to pull off the change. Are there ways to build in hourly, daily or weekly accountability? Do you need a tracking system? A notorious strategy for dieting is to keep a food journal so that dieters are conscious fo what’s going in their mouths. A tally of calories can be an eye opening experience. Information and facts are so helpful to maintain motivation.
  • Is there any clean up you must do as a result? Any apologies or acknowledgements to make? Is trust eroding or dissapointment building between you and others? Acknowledgement and an apology go a long way to reguilding trust and igniting hope.
  • How will you reaffirm your commitment to yourself or others to create accountability?
  • What actions will you take to keep your commitment?
  • What do you need to create logistically to succeed?
  • What progress, if any, did you make? Was there any forward momentum? Any positive steps? If so, take a moment to celebrate.

If you’re like most of my clients you have big dreams and a hearty list of goals to tackle. You have a vision for the difference you want to make. Don’t get in your own way. Break those goals into manageable stepping stones and create the positive mindset that you WILL make them happen one daily choice at a time.

And, if a bump in the road happens caused by you or something out of your control you’ll keep on keeping on. Your plans are too important to give up on!

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Direct download: DTD_066__Stop_Beating_Yourself_Up.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Sarah from South Carolina

I am excited to say that my business has grown over the last 7 years. I am very lucky. As it has grown I have hired more employees. Here’s my drama, I still feel like I’m doing everything. I really thought that as I added more people I’d be able to scale back some on my hours and really focus on my favorite parts of the business. That just hasn’t happened. Some employees do say I’m a perfectionist but I really feel like I let them do their work. I try to modify my expectations. I really want to have some work life balance but so far no matter how many people I hire I’m still working my tush off.

Sarah, so sorry to hear about your struggles. Let’s get you some customized solutions.

As always, In the Defeat Your Drama segments, I will provide solutions based on the information provided. I will obviously not have full details so will provide customized strategies based on what you share. Always consider your own specific circumstances before taking any action. These are suggestions not guarantees.

If you don’t have a specific destination you never know where you’ll end up. The first two strategies are about designing your destination.

#1 Design Your Life and Work

Determine the number of hours you’d like to work per week and how you would like to divide those work hours. Will all of your work time be done on location or will you conduct some of your work from home. Is that a possibility?

Would you like to find time to volunteer in your child’s school or take a class yourself? Where will you carve out time for you each week?

Don’t worry about what your team will think and don’t worry about how you’ll make it all happen yet. This exercise is the first phase of creating your destination. What do you want your life and work to look like? How should the two blend?

#2 Determine What You Love to Do and Are Great at

Track the tasks that you are completing now. Break them down. For instance, if you are engaging in marketing for the business, don’t just write down marketing. Break it down into the smaller tasks of marketing. It’s possible that you love and are great at some of the pieces of marketing but would prefer to delegate other aspects of it.

Once you create your list begin to analyze each task. Categorize them. Highlight the tasks that you love to do and are great at. The goal is to spend a majority of your time there. Create another list of the things that you are not good at and dislike. Those items should be delegated to someone who has the strengths to carry out those tasks well!

Next, analyze the list of tasks you’d like to focus on to determine the number of hours required. Can you fit all of these tasks into the schedule you’ve designed? If not, you may need to add some additional items to your “To Be Delegated” list.

#3 Create a Plan for Who Will Own the Tasks You are Delegating

Once you have your complete list of tasks to offload you’ll need to Create a plan for who will take on the tasks you are delegating. Evaluate your current team. Do you already have people in place on your team who could handle them? If they are not currently able to take on tasks you must delegate what training do they need to get ready? If they do not have the ability even with training what kind of employee(s) must you hire?

Then you must determine whether you have the manpower to backfill the tasks you will offload. Is your team over capacity now or do they have some wiggle room. How much time will they need to complete the added responsibilities. If not, you will need to increase your team.

What kind of employees will you need to hire?

Listen to the 4 episodes on hiring #50 through 53:

EP50: 4 Steps You Must Follow to Avoid the Disastrous Drama Generating New Hire: Plan

EP51: 4 Steps You Must Follow to Avoid the Disastrous Drama Generating New Hire: Source

EP52: 4 Steps You Must Follow to Avoid the Disastrous Drama Generating New Hire: Sift

EP53: 4 Steps You Must Follow to Avoid the Disastrous Drama Generating New Hire: Choose

Make sure that you have a solid plan for each item on your list. Have a specific person assigned along with any training or other communication that will need to occur before the work can be passed along. Create deadlines for communicating the new expectations and for any training. This will give you a timeline for achieving your end goal and will generate the list of tasks you must complete to make it all happen.

#4 Delegate Tasks Well

You say that you still feel like you are doing all of the work. Often my clients express the same feelings. When we dive into how they are delegating work I always find that they are missing at least one of the 6 important steps of great delegation. As soon as they add the missing elements follow through from their team increases exponentially.

I will assume that you are missing some of the steps as well. If you haven’t already, listen to episode #2 Six Simple Steps to Great Delegation: http://goo.gl/2NI1L5

You’ll be able to determine which step you are missing. Write the steps on a sticky note and make sure that you are setting clear expectations for your team. Hold them accountable. Let them know it’s a new day.

You did mention that you have some perfectionist tendencies. This can make it difficult to delegate. I advise that you start small and begin to work that delegation muscle. Celebrate your successes and keep your eye on that prize! The more you delegate the closer you are to that end goal.

#5 Feel Peace and Less Drama

With a game plan mapped out you can immediately find peace knowing that you are making progress towards your end goal of finding more work life balance and enjoying the benefits of a more productive team.

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Direct download: DYD_065__I_Have_Employees_But_Still_Feel_Like_I_m_Doing_all_the_Work.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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I have vivid memories of the nights spent as a young child with good friends and cousins. We would concoct the biggest, most outrageous plans with the pure, innocent intent of making it all happen the next day.

There were plans for a huge circus and parade. We’d create the vision. It was going to be huge and glorious and would take place in the living room. Or how about the magic show we’d have. The neighborhood would join, the audience would be enormous. People would make time to come and we’d have the mad skills required to amaze them all.

The forces of reality didn’t limit our dreams and we lofted off to sleep KNOWING that the visions we’d created would happen. There were no doubts, there were no facts or realities squelching the breadth of our visions.

It didn’t matter that no one knew even one magic trick. We’d learn them quickly in the morning just before the throngs of admirers arrived. And, sure we didn’t have an elephant, lion or tiger to include in the lineup of our circus.   The only animal at our disposal didn’t even know sit or stay. But, we’d figure it all out and put on an amazing show anyway!

As an adult would it serve me to live so out of the realm of reality? No. But, would there be a significant advantage to living a little further along the spectrum of imagination than most adults do? Yes.

As I work with my clients who feel stuck in a rut, unfulfilled and living with the yearning that there must be something more I am amazed at the limits they place on their imaginations.

No I can’t

That wouldn’t be possible.

There’d be too much work to do

I have kids leaving for college soon

I have a mortgage

I don’t have the time

I’m sure it would cost a lot to do that.

I’d be mortified if I tried and it didn’t work out.

What would my family think?

On an on the list goes. Meanwhile they are stopped before they even start. Yes, we need to consider reality. But, not as we brainstorm. What if you are stopping the process prematurely? What would it feel like to imagine from a place where anything seems possible?

What if that big dream could happen? What if you could begin the journey and get at least half way there?  What would your business look like? What could your life be?

Norman Vincent Peale said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, youll land among the stars.”

And how fun would that be?

I think that drama is greater when we feel frustrated and unfulfilled. Why not dream a little dream and create an action plan? You just never know what you can make happen!

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If something is not going well in your department or business look at you first and ask, “What did I do to contribute to this situation?”

Some good places to look first:

  • Did I set clear and consistent expectations (quantity, quality)?
  • Does the team or individual have the necessary knowledge, skills and abilities?
  • Am I helping to create an environment that is encouraging and motivating?
  • Have I made my employees afraid to take action?
  • Is there an effective process in place that is well documented and available?
  • Are the necessary resources available (time, equipment, supplies)?
  • Is the current goal consistent with organization mission and vision?
  • Have I addressed any performance or attitude issues?

As a leader you are empowered to fix what is broken with the team and to improve the outcomes your team is achieving.

Episode 3: Ignite Team Follow Throughhttp://goo.gl/SNLA08

Episode 13: Simple Process Improvementhttp://goo.gl/MDv646

Episode 25: Document for Ease of Mind, Teaching Tools and Freedomhttp://goo.gl/iuSjcG

Episode 19: Learn How Leaders Create a Business Culturehttp://goo.gl/gLa1RS

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Direct download: DTD_063__Are_You_Limiting_Your_Teams_Sucess_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:16am EDT

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The human brain is amazing! It’s a part of us but almost acts as a separate entity at times, especially if we let it. And it sure can keep busy!   Left to wander our brans can create drama! Do you just let your mind meander or are you intentional with your thoughts?

In every moment you have the opportunity to choose what you focus on.

Choose what your brain places on, what I call, your radar screen.

And in every situation you are in you can be focused on the present in a positive way, focused on the present in a negative way or focused on a time that has passed or hasn’t happened yet.

Many of my clients spend lots of time over analyzing experiences they’ve already had, beating themselves up about where they went wrong or didn’t use the perfect words.

While there is, of course, some benefit to learning from your history, you don’t want to spend a lifetime there!

Others I work with spend a lot of time anticipating the future. They try to figure out every different possible outcome for a current situation and create a plan for each. What if this happens? Then I’ll do this. What if that happens? I don’t want that to happen! I think I can avoid that by doing this!

If this happens that would be great! But I think I need to follow this path or get this person to say this for that to even be a possibility. I’d better get on that.

While creating a solid plan for the future is good you don’t want to miss out on your present.

How many times do you complete a routine only to realize you were completely unaware of your actions? You think, “Did I actually wash my hair?” Or, “Wow, I drove here already!”

How often are you consumed with thoughts and in your own world when you could be connecting with the people around you?

Be intentional about your thoughts. Let them serve you.

  • If it is learning time, yes, go back over past events to see what you could have done better. But do it from a positive place. Give yourself grace, take note and move on. Beating yourself up about something that has already happened does not serve you.
  • Creating an action plan? That’s a great time to focus on the future to create a vision and a path. But place your focus there with excitement, exuberance, and anticipation. Empower yourself by focusing on what is in your control and let what you can not change go.
  • Time to be present. Spend time there and focus on the positive, regardless of your circumstance. If things are going well feel gratitude. If you are experiencing a hardship see it as an opportunity. Avoid worry and what if’ing and instead find what is in your control and focus there.I love this quote: “Challenges can be stepping stones or stumbling blocks. It’s just a matter of how you view them.” An Unknown Author Choose the thoughts that serve you in the moment and be present.
  • And, please, pay attention in those simple moments:
    • Is there a beautiful sunrise happening during your routine drive to work?
    • Are the leaves turning or flowers blooming?
    • Take time to breath and look around your home with gratitude.
    • Are there people around you who would love to connect with you?
    • Remember to ask your kids how their day was.
    • Greet your significant other when they walk into the room.
    • Take the time to feel the love you have for others and express it.
    • Notice the co-worker passing in the hall and take a moment.

Today, be intentional with your thoughts. Begin to practice this control. No more meandering minds.

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Direct download: DTD_062__You_Can_Control_Your_Thoughts_Do_You_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

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Doesn’t it seem like life brings you one little hiccup after another? It is often easy to stay busy fixing one small challenge after another. Our lives or work can get consumed with the little nuisances coming at us. But, we’d still rather have a bunch of small manageable problems, right?

Well…..I’m going to ask you to examine that today. You see, on the surface, little problems seem small and unrelated and one little challenge after another can consume our entire focus.

Often, however, what we’re missing is that there’s actually a bigger issue to tackle. Focusing on one little snafu after another does nothing more than shift your attention away from the solution that could actually alter your entire circumstance.

As a for instance, I have a client I’ve been working with for a while. At the start of each session he would describe the current challenge:

  • The team missed this deadline,
  • There was a mistake on this project and no one caught it,
  • We had planned to have a celebratory lunch together but we had an emergency,
  • I didn’t have time to exercise
  • I have no clothes that fit right now.

The full focus was on fixing each little issue as it popped up, or at least taking the time to complain about it.

I knew they were all connected but he didn’t……Yet! So, his time was consumed with these seemingly unrelated, but constant small hiccups.

One day, as he described yet another minor frustration, I popped out of my chair and said, “Hold that thought! I’ll be right back!”   I went out into the waiting area and asked the receptionist where they kept decorative vases or containers. She pointed me in the direction of some cabinets in the kitchen and I perused everything they had quickly and to my delight found the perfect visual!

It was a beautiful crystal basket. It had probably originally been delivered filled with a bouquet of flowers.

I brought it back into his office and set it in the center of his conference table.

“What’s this?” he inquired.

“It’s a basket”, I replied, with a smile!

He was puzzled so I went on to explain.

All of the minor frustrations, snafus, challenges that monopolized his focus each week were the cause of a much bigger problem. Looking at them as separate issues was precluding him from working on the real issue.

And there isn’t as much pain involved with a lot of little snafus. There is just a constant low level of frustration. However, pull all of that pain together and you have the motivation to tackle a big issue. It was time for him to muster the strength and tenacity to attack the real issue.

He and his entire team were working without margin. I have never seen a tighter schedule anywhere. They literally have appointments scheduled to the minute. It is one client, my only client, where I KNOW, for a fact that I will finish ON TIME. It doesn’t matter what we are covering at the end of a session. When that clock hits our designated time we are done. On the dot! As a matter of fact, he often gets antsy about 7 minutes before the end. I feel his energy begin to shift to the next task at hand.

Working this tight means that any emergency, any snafu requires hours of finagling with schedules to move things and the ripple affect is felt for weeks or months. I am NOT exaggerating.

One week they lost power for a day and a half. Yes, that is a HUGE inconvenience for any business. But weeks later they were still feeling the pain of that outage. They had no margin to allow for a swift shift of workload or appointments.

So, this beautiful crystal basket was to become the symbol of the bucket in which he must add every little challenge. He needed to start feeling the full brunt and pain of the real issue rather than the small pain of each tiny challenge.

You see, his focus was on all the minor consequences of the bigger issue.

It brings to mind the old saying, “he could not see the forest for the trees.”

For the first few weeks I had to keep reminding him, “Yep, that happened because you have no margin.”

“That must be frustrating. That happens when you have no wiggle room in your schedule.”

“This too is because you are too tightly scheduled.”

I would point out ways that a problem could be so much smaller if they had more time to deal with it.

I pointed out where he would describe a visit with relatives as a drudgery, not because he was reluctant to see them, but because he was overwhelmed by the thought of another drain on his time.

Slowly he began to see. The crystal basket, while not as masculine as the other items in his office, became an important visual to help him begin to see the smaller issues as interconnected. Began to help build the motivation he needed to tackle the larger problem rather than focusing on all of the smaller consequences. A focus on these little things could consume his time but would never transform his situation.

Your larger issue may not be time but I do want to ask you where you might be focusing on the small consequences of poor decisions or a lack of self discipline. Is there a place in your life or work where it is time to shift your focus to a larger issue that is creating the on-going chaos?

  • Is your monthly struggle to pay your rent or mortgage the result of a larger spending issue? Are you perhaps shifting too many resources to smoking, gambling or unnecessary shopping?
  • Is your inability to find time to grocery shop, take a leisurely walk or soak in a hot bath the result of your people pleasing tendencies?
  • Are the struggles you have with your team, significant other, or kids the result of your lack of integrity over all? Do you fail to keep your promises? Or, perhaps the larger issue is your anger.

Start to pay attention to the little struggles and follow the chain back. What causes each? Is there a common theme?

Where is it time for you to focus on the forest rather than the trees?

Package the emotion and frustration and begin to ignite the desire to tackle that bigger issue rather than the ongoing smaller consequences. It is time to truly transform your circumstance!

Click To Apply For A Leadership Breakthrough Session With Kirsten

 

Direct download: DTD_061__Are_You_Really_Suffering_from_a_Lot_of_Little_Problems_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Click To Apply For A Leadership Breakthrough Session With Kirsten

This episode is releasing on the holiday we celebrate in the United States called Thanksgiving. It is a day to give thanks for all that we have.

In honor of this day I want to encourage you to give thanks everyday. It is powerful to live a life of gratitude.

In every moment you have the opportunity to choose your perspective and there is always something to be grateful for.

When I first got divorced about 10 years ago my two boys were very young, kindergarten and second grade. It was a challenging time for all 3 of us. I began using a gratitude journal each day to help me shift my focus to what I had rather than what I did not. I quickly realized that this was an important exercise for my boys as well and adopted our nightly gratitude talks.

Each night before they went to bed we would all climb into my high queen sized bed to snuggle and take turns sharing about what we were grateful for.

Back then their list often included a video game or a special toy. And there were the nights when my heart would melt as they said, “I’m grateful for my mom.”

It became a super special time of connection and shifting of focus from the worries, fears and challenges of each day to a focus on what made us very, very lucky and blessed!

I loved hearing what they were thankful for and enjoyed that special time. They looked forward to it every night. “Come on mom! We have to have our gratitude talk!” I loved that they loved it!

Our talks almost always ended with giggles and hugs. And it was the start of our inside joke that someone was going to get the boot. I think my youngest went out of his way to kick and wiggle so that I would say it. “Settle down or you’re going to get the boot!” We would all break out in laughter. Years later that phrase is still an inside joke.

My oldest son told me one day, “mom, I want to write a book about our gratitude talks. I want other kids to have gratitude talks with their moms when they’re going through a tough time because it really makes things a lot better!”

Wise words from a second grader. I suggest you follow them!

Today I encourage you to begin the practice of focusing on what you have to be grateful for. Make it a daily practice. Make a list. Get together with your family or some close friends to say it out loud. If you are a praying person thank God for His favor and all of your blessings.

Click To Apply For A Leadership Breakthrough Session With Kirsten

 

Direct download: DTD_060__You_Can_Choose_Gratitude_Every_Day.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:19am EDT

A business owner writes in asking how he can decrease employee turnover. Listen to hear the five tips to solving this problem.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

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Direct download: DYD_059__How_Can_We_Decrease_our_Turnover_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Your time is a currency. How do you spend it?

Does the business of life take all of your time and attention? 

Your time is a currency and we all have a needs account.  It requires time and attention from ourselves or others to fill our tank.  An empty tank will almost always mean more drama as we find ourselves feeling resentful, overwhelmed, tired, burned out, unappreciated. 

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

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Direct download: DTD_058__You_Do_You_Invest_Time_for_You_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

What? You haven't heard this term before?

Well, if you were one of my perfectionists or people pleasing leader clients you probably would have heard it.  I’ve used this word for years to describe the act of diving in to fix problems or potential problems or perceived problems – or, to use the excuse that there is evidence of any of these in order to justify jumping in to take over.    

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Direct download: DTD_057__Are_You_a_Swooper_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

It’s time to talk about a drama-inducing tactic that many of my clients use or experience in their relationships both personal and professional.  I call it the Hoop! As in, jump through my hoop.  The hoop happens when one individual is testing another individual without their knowledge.

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Direct download: DTD_056__Are_Hoops_Creating_Your_Drama_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Fear has a place. Fear tells us to go into protection mode.  Our physical well being is in danger!  

The problem is, the way we live today, that fear telling us to stop – don’t move – danger and the accompanying adrenalin rush are not usually consistent with the threat level. In this episode Kirsten will share five keys to help you move though your fears.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

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Direct download: DTD_055__Are_Your_Fears_Stopping_You__5_Keys_to_Moving_Ahead.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Meetings can be frusterating in many ways. In this episode Kirsten covers five key strategies to help create meetings that you will love!

Want to create even more pain around meetings? Do the Time is Money Activity 
Calculate: Average salary x # people in meeting x length of meeting = SCAREY!

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Do you often make the wrong hiring decisions?  Do you avoid terminating poor performers because you think you'll never be able to hire anyone better anyway?  In this episode Kirsten teaches the specific strategies on how to choose great candidates. 4th in a 4 part series.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
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Do you often make the wrong hiring decisions? Do you avoid terminating poor performers because you think you'll never be able to hire anyone better anyway? In this episode Kirsten teaches the specific strategies on how to sift for great candidates. 3rd in a 4 part series.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

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Do you often make the wrong hiring decisions?  Do you avoid terminating poor performers because you think you'll never be able to hire anyone better anyway?  In this episode Kirsten teaches the specific strategies on how to source for great candidates. 2nd in a 4 part series.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

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http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama

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Do you often make the wrong hiring decisions?  Do you avoid terminating poor performers because you think you'll never be able to hire anyone better anyway?  In this episode Kirsten teaches the specific strategies to use to hire the right people right now.  1st in a 4 part series, in this episode you'll learn how to plan for the interview.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Submit your Drama Question at the below link...
http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes


Are you often frustrated with the performance of your team?  Is productivity not where it should be?  Are you plagued with too many customer service issues?  In this episode Kirsten discusses the three barriers to team productivity and great customer service - unlintended outcomes, ineffective reporting relationships, and resources.

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

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Direct download: DTD_049__3_Common_Barriers_to_Team_Productivity__Great_Service.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Is it difficult for you to hold your team accountable?  Do you avoid correction conversations?  Listen and learn about the 7 common consequences you might suffer if you fail to hold your team accountable.  Gain the motivation you need to bust your fears and do what you must to create a dynamic team. 

1. Lost Productivity
2. Resentments
3. Overwhelm
4. Burnout
5. Increased Liability
6. Sabotage
7. Decreased Customer Service

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Other Related Episodes to Listen to if You Haven’t Already

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

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The words we use can be powerful.  They can ignite emotion not only in us but also in others. This can be a good thing but at times can work against us! Listen to Kirsten as she teaches on the importance of our words in this episode of Defeat the Drama!

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Direct download: DTD_047__Choose_Your_Words_Wisely__Do_They_Make_You_Wig_Out_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 10:36am EDT

In this Defeat Your Drama Episode Elizabeth asks a great question- My boss complains about other departments; what can I do? 

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Direct download: DYD_046__My_Boss_Complains_About_Other_Departments_What_Can_I_Do_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode Kirsten teaches on the following:

• Communication
• Accountability
• Employee Discipline
• Structure
• Delegation

Have you found your leadership balance? 

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Direct download: DTD_045__Your_Leadership_Balancing_Act.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 11:37am EDT

To lead your team well you must create the vision that is as clear as the beautiful picture on the box, assure that all of the pieces are there and that there is a clean surface to work on, assure you have the right people and then let your team go to it!

Click to view the shownotes for this episode

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Direct download: DTD_044__Does_Your_Team_Even_Like_Puzzles_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

In this episode you will learn some simple strategies to eliminate guilt in a healthy way. Kirsten shares some great tips in this episode of Defeat the Drama that you can implement right away.

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Direct download: DTD_043__Simple_Strategies_to_Eliminate_Guilt_in_a_Healthy_Way.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Try out these keys to great customer service that Kirsten shares in this episode of Defeat the Drama! 

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!

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Direct download: DTD_042__Defining_Your_Unique_Keys_to_Great_Service.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Jen from Fort Worth, TX asks,

I work in purchasing and previously worked in Customer Service where we made enhancements that saved time and money. In my transition, it was very clear we had broken systems and areas where we are very inefficient. I have submitted process improvement recommendations several times but they go through an approval process where I am not part of that discussion. (Leadership team) It takes some money to fix the issues. Our leadership team worried about hard cost savings but not savings where it's difficult to justify/capture. But at the same time, they are having everyone manually handle tactical issues and being inefficient. Help!

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Catrina from Scotland, U.K. asks, "How do you reach out to someone at work who thinks they are doing "all these tasks"' to the point that certain tasks that they are supposed to be doing aren't done as much as they should? 

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Direct download: DYD_040__My_Co-Worker_is_Constantly_Complaining.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Angry customers are difficult to work with. Matt writes in for help. Learn the quick strategies I share for winning ove an unhappy customer.

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Direct download: DYD_038__Too_Many_Angry_Customers__How_Can_I_Respond_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:15pm EDT

Remember the Jerry Seinfeld episode where he vents at the car rental place with Elaine? They took the reservation they just didnt keep it. How often are you doing that with your commitments?

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This Defeat the Drama episode is about defriending and how to handle it with your team.

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Direct download: DTD_037__Conquering_Their_Stay_Stuck_Strategies__Defriending.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

This Defeat the Drama episode is about defensiveness and how to handle it with your team.

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Direct download: DTD_036__Conquering_Their_Stay_Stuck_Strategies___Defensiveness.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

This Defeat the Drama episode is about denial and how it can impact your team.

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Direct download: DTD_035__Conquering_Their_Stay_Stuck_Strategies_Denial.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

This Defeat the Drama episode is about deflection and how it can impact your communication with your team.

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Direct download: DTD_034__Conquering_Their_Stay_Stuck_Strategies_Deflection.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Hiring a friend seems like such a great idea. You know them. You know you get a long and they care about you so thtey must care about your business. Unfortunately, hiring a friend rarely works as planned.

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Direct download: DYD_033__DYD_I_Hired_My_Friend_and_its_Not_Working_Out_Now_What_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

This episode Kirsten talks on Correction Conversations and The New Mindset.

View Episode 32 Shownotes

Related Episodes:

Episode 26 5 Keys to Igniting Great Correction Conversations 

Episode 28 5 Keys to a Life of Healthy Boundaries

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes


Communication can be challenging. Often we speak louder and longer in an effort to be heard. Is this effective? How do you react when someone's communication method is not ideal?

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/    

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/RG7dfF

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Direct download: DTD_031__In_Your_Communication_Focus_on_Message_Over_Method.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Often we get sidetracked in trying to figure out why somoene is behaving poorly or not performing on the job. We shift our focus to diagnosing the reason and let it be a justification. At some point you must accept what is so and take action from there.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/bQTcw8
  

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Direct download: DTD_030__Let_Their_Why_by_the_Reason_Not_the_Justification.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Networking has gotten a bad rap. Do you avoid networking? Or go and feel uncomfortable? Let's create some realisitic goals and tweak your networking mindset so that you can do more than tolerate networking. What if you could even enjoy it?

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/25T07X

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/    

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Direct download: DTD_029__5_Cs_to_Creating_Ideal_Connections.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Where do you have building resentments in your relationships? Are you plagued with overwhelm? Healthy boundaries are the key to living a healthy balanced life. Set healthy boundaries in leadership and life.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/    

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/RG7dfF

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Direct download: DTD_028__5_Keys_to_a_Life_of_Healthy_Boundaries.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 9:46pm EDT

It's time to think about what you think about. What words do you use about yourself and your circumstance, are your incouraging or discouraging? Learn to take control of your thoughts in this episode of Defeat the Drama.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/    

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/nAwf19

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Direct download: DTD_027__What_Goes_on_in_Your_Head.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Managers, supervisors and leaders often find it difficult to give diciplinary action or give correction conversations with defensive employees. Conversations can become heated, loud and out of control. This episode provides 5 key strategies to initiate tough conversations with ease.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/   

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/Kl7OCH

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http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

 

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes

Direct download: DTD_026__5_Keys_to_Igniting_Great_Correction_Conversations.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

If a key employee left your organization would you be able to pick up their job? Do you have passwords and access url's documented for your social media accounts and website? Documenting processes, passwords, procedures and more is important.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/   

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/iuSjcG

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

 

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes

Direct download: DTD_025__Document_for_Ease_of_Mind_Teaching_Tools_and_Freedom.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Defeat Your Drama - Ron from Orlando shares his Drama Challenge. His business partner moves too slowly. He gets analysis paralysis. Ron wants to move the business into new markets.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/   

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/WRgW4W

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

 

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes

Direct download: DTD_024__My_Business_Partner_Moves_too_Slowly_What_Can_I_Do__1.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Resignation and a victim mentality zap energy. Even when options are limited you have choices. You can feel empowered in a moment. Try this simple strategy to change your perspective immediately. 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/ZiHA81

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Submit your Drama Question at the below link...
http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama

 

If you enjoyed, I would really appreciate a review on iTunes

Direct download: DTD_023__I_Choose__Defeat_Your_Resignation_and_Victim_Mentality_Now.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

A trip for new tires ends in frustration and a free tire. Could this bad customer service experience have been avoided? Did workplace drama play a role? Let my bad experience be your gain as I share lessons learned.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/   

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/76VomU

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_022__My_Bad_Customer_Service_Experience.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

We all have an innate desire to live a life of purpose. Some of us are aware of the yearning while others stuff it. Learn 2 simple steps to help you find your life's purpose.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/   

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/VX2ifg

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_021__Whats_Your_Lifes_Purpose.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Feeling annoyed with an employee without diagnosing why keeps you stuck. You must get clear to create a targeted strategy to fix the situation.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/DtRDai

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_020__Why_is_Your_Employee_Annoying_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Leaders create business culture. Learn the specific steps you can take to create a culture aligned with your business objectives. Improve customer service, engage your team and reach your goals.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/gLa1RS

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_019__How_Leaders_Create_a_Business_Culture.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

We get caught up in staying busy and think this is the path to success. We can task our way to success. Unfortunately, this isn't the case. You must find focus time to create the right actions to achieve success.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/L6hOMy

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_018__Find_Focus_for_Success.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Defeat Your Drama - Dave from Delaware shares his Drama Challenge.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/BW2i6I

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DYD_017__Two_Employees_Dont_Get_Along._What_Can_I_Do_.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Kirsten shares customized strategies for Rick from Kansas who is a leader with two feuding departments.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/X2JBF3

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DYD_016__Two_Departments_are_at_Odds.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Does your business handle customer service issues well? You must have a good customer issue escalation process to create great customer service. Connect with your customers and show empathy to create loyalty.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/  

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/NMCbrm

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_015__Escalate_Customer_Issues.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

What motivates you? It's important to know. Do you move away from what you don't like or move towards a specific goal? Either way you must have a destination planned or you never know where you might end up.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/ 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/YQNQuR

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_014__What_Motivates_You.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Implementing a simple process improvement system will do more than just increase your productivity. It will help you defeat drama! Try this simple system that will work any organization or non-profit.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/ 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/MDv646

Direct download: DTD_013__Simple_Process_Improvement.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Kirsten shares customized solutions for Sarah from Oregon who has a difficult boss.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/ 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/xKuvim

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DYD_012__I_Love_My_Job_But_My_Boss_is_a_Tyrant._What_Can_I_Do_.m4a
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Successful leaders and business owners have good trusted advisors. What are the elements of a trusted advisor? You don't want to give this prestigious spot to just anyone willing to offer an opinion. Learn the 7 key characteristics of a great trusted advisor.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/ 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/gyAemb

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: DTD_011__7_Key_Characteristics_of_a_Great_Trusted_Advisor.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Learn how to define success in a moment to provide joy and momentum. Achieve your goals, celebrate success and continue to succeed.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/ 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/rPl91G

Direct download: DTD_010__Success.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Amy Van Dyken-Rouen, Olympic Swimmer, provides an inspiring example. You can choose an empowering, positive perspective in any situation.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

 

 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/y258ul

Direct download: DTD_009__Choose_Perspective.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

To feel empowered you must focus more on where you can have a positive influence and less on blame. Blame focuses us outwards for the cause of an unintended outcome and furthers the belief that we are a victim and can do nothing. Focus, instead on where you can have a positive impact on a situation that has gone awry.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

 

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/pwLj4r

Direct download: DTD_008__Influence_vs_Blame.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

People pleasing in our lives ignites overwhelm and resentment in our relationships.  As a leader, people pleasing can create even more issues.  Learn the clues to look for to see if you are engaging in people pleasing behavior.  Can your team trust a people pleaser?  Learn a simple formula to end people pleasing behavior.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/mwYIVj

Direct download: DTD_007__People_Pleasing_Leaders.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 3:30am EDT

Sometimes our lessons come from unexpected sources.  Learn leadership lessons from a 9 year old boy who had a big vision for an exciting journey in a water park.  Riding a Lazy River has never been so fun!

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/niI4M0

Direct download: DTD_006__Leadership_Lessons.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:36pm EDT

Click To Apply For A FREE Leadership Breakthrough Session with Kirsten Today!

Leaders, business owners, entrepreneurs, nonprofit leaders you must engage your team. You don’t want employees who are just there for a paycheck.

Employees who are there for money will leave as soon as they get their next opportunity for more dollars. And the work will not inspire them. Often they will do the minimum required rather than what it takes to excel. You want them fired up and engaged in providing great customer service or serving your nonprofit community. You want them attached to your business mission and business objectives. Engaged teams are more loyal, miss less work and achieve more. You will learn some key, simple strategies to engage your employees in the important work that you are doing in your business, nonprofit, social enterprise.

Click To Apply For A FREE Leadership Breakthrough Session with Kirsten Today!

Direct download: 05_DTD_005__Engage_Your_Team.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:07am EDT

The world is filled with anger management strategies. While this is a step in the right direction and has encouraged us to be respectful, I believe that we've gone too far. Learn 3 simple strategies to use to eliminate anger rather than avoid or manage anger.

Submit YOUR Drama Challenge at the link below http://podcast.defeatthedrama.com/defeat-your-drama/

Shownotes are available at the link below
http://goo.gl/uJkjvn

Signup for the free webinar at the link below: Surefire Strategies To Get Your Team Motivated Without Losing Your Mind!
http://www.defeatthedrama.com/webinarsignuppage

Direct download: 04_DTD_004__No_More_Anger_Management.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 1:07am EDT