October 2017 Business Case Study

The Situation:Leadership Confidence

Bill has been in the organization just over a year. He was recruited by a senior leader because of his analytical skills and deep knowledge of the industry. The challenges are that the projects are fast moving and at times, he must make a decision without having all the facts. This has created concern among the senior leaders that he is not confident in decisive actions at critical points of a project.

The Solution:

Bill began working on ways to ask critical questions to get himself into a comfort zone if faced with making a decision without all of the information he would prefer. Bill also initiated meetings with team members so that as many details as possible are available when a decision needs to be made.

The Outcome:

Bill gained enough confidence at meetings to ask probing questions on project issues that demanded immediate decisions. He has also committed to not work in a silo. Instead, he spends time developing relationships so when there is a need to get other folks involved they are more responsive. Senior leaders have commented that they are pleased timelines are being met, sometimes even before the due dates.

Don’t be afraid to give up the good to go for the great. John D. Rockefeller

September 2017 Business Case Study

The Situation: Thinker to Director

James has been in the organization for two years. His role is to oversee a group of senior leaders. The opportunity for James is to process information quickly to determine the appropriate way to help these leaders deal with ongoing organizational issues. James was hired because of his high intellect. However, it has been very difficult to keep up with this fast thinking group.

The Solution:

A platinum assessment confirmed that James is a strong thinker. Process is his comfort level but he needs to move closer to a Director role where the focus is on the end product being delivered on time rather than weighing options to find a solution.

The Outcome:

James has moved closer to a Director level by delivering solutions on difficult situations. It has also been determined that his strengths might be better served in a research capacity or by partnering with a counterpart to work with the senior leaders.

Put your heart, mind, and soul into even your smallest acts. This is the secret of success. Swami Sivananda

August 2017 Business Case Study

The Situation: Executive Leadership Presence

Phyllis was brought in for her technical knowledge and history of success in dealing with customers. However, her visual presence and lack of tact in dealing with critical issues was less than acceptable. Phyllis also tended to shy away from conflict.

The Solution:

Her skill is in reviewing data and strategies for results and her assessments revealed a style better suited as a team player. In putting together her team, we chose a number two-person good at conflict and sales.

In a video taken of Phyllis, she realized an elevated presence was needed. One way to do that was by making new clothing / color choices that transitioned her from an invisible to a visible presence. A new hair style, makeup and eyewear continued to strengthen her appearance. We also worked on her presentation skills beginning with her choice of words and platform skills (posture, moving in front of an audience and pacing words).

The Outcome:

After a year of coaching to successfully manage the customers through her group, the senior team noted positive changes and the board of directors approved her 2018 goal strategies based on a presentation Phyllis gave. They also acknowledged the improvement of her visual presence in the office and on the road.

“Being perfectly well-dressed gives one a tranquility that no religion can bestow.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson

July 2017 Business Case Study

The Situation:  Managing a new and old team

Gary has been with the organization a year. His role is to strengthen the group by hiring new associates while assessing the effectiveness of the current team members. He realized after replacing a non-producing associate that another member is not respected either. Senior management is now concerned Gary is not an effective team leader.

The Solution:

Gary will do a 360 to determine strengths and areas for improvement. He also realizes more time should be spent with the weaker team members by partnering them with the stronger ones. Gary also must build his relationship with his new manager and realize that using an inclusive tone of voice with his team and boss will help the situation.

The Outcome:

Gary continues to empower his team and deepen his relationship with his new manager. He scheduled a retreat for his group with another team that supports his. They will look at lessons learned in the past year and at opportunities to be successful in the remainder of 2017 and into 2018. He will also take the group out in the evening for a fun cooking class and dinner.

A leader takes people where they want to go. A great leader takes people where they don’t necessarily want to go, but ought to be.” – Rosalynn Carter, former first lady of the United States

June 2017 Business Case Study

The Situation: Dealing with a difficult leader

Anita is the third executive assistant for this CEO. She was hired because of her credentials and calm demeanor. After being in the role for almost six months, she has not been her best and HR is unsure of her future.

The Solution:

Anita’s calming demeanor is a real asset and she is task driven like the CEO. The path to Anita’s growth is to make quicker decisions without being reactive. The CEO is a dominant director and is not interested in all the details. He needs enough data to feel reassured that situations are being handled. Anita and the CEO established some timeouts so that when a situation is out of balance, there is a meeting of the minds.

The Outcome:

The challenges continue but there are fewer major ones. Anita and the CEO work through their differences and feel more confident engaging with their different communication and process styles. The end results are more positive than negative.

The first sentence of a book is a handshake, perhaps an embrace. Jhumpa Lahiri