Profile image Nov 2015

Say the word leader out loud, notice the first syllable is ‘lead’? While it sounds like an obvious trait to possess, not all leaders have a natural ability to lead by example, but it’s imperative if you want to inspire your team and earn their respect.

Good leaders do exactly that, they lead by example. By walking your talk, you become someone people want to follow. When leaders say one thing, but do another, they erode trust – which we all know is critical to effective leadership. Here are some ways you can set an awesome example for your team – let’s face it, you can’t expect people to do something you are not prepared to do yourself, so if you want your team to take ownership of their actions, you need to do the same.

Create a clear vision; know what you want to achieve, and why. Communicate this to your team frequently. Your actions have the potential to affect everyone around you – so don’t dabble in mediocrity.

Take responsibility. Know when to accept that a mistake has been made and take it upon yourself to fix it. It doesn’t matter if one of your team members messed up or you did. If you are the leader, you need to take responsibility. This encourages everyone around you to accept responsibility and be accountable.

Give credit to your team. The more your team feels appreciated, the more enthusiastic they will become. Communicate your mission, vision, values, and goals – then step back and let your team innovate. Listen and seek regular feedback from your team. If someone needs extra guidance, keep it for private one-on-one discussions.

Look after yourself. Exercise regularly, eat well and take breaks. A balanced team, mentally and physically, is a successful team. The more you take care of yourself, the more energy you will have and the clearer your mind will be.

Roll up your sleeves. Show that when a job needs to be done, everyone at every level needs to chip in and participate.

Leading by example does two very important things; it inspires people and it earns you respect. If you can observe your own behaviours and understand the impacts they are likely to have on others, you can use this information to make gradual changes that have a lasting positive impact. Personal growth can be challenging, but don’t feel that you need to do this on your own.  I’d love to hear about your goals, challenges and successes.

Having the right systems in place can change the way your business operates. This month’s ‘All About Awesome’ column is all about how to run your business like a finely oiled machine.

Profile header - Aug 2015You chose to go into business so you could live the life you’d always dreamed of, but instead of you running your business, your business is running you. Hmmm. THAT won’t work for long now, will it?

So, then you put some staff on to take off the pressure, but you didn’t get the results you’d hoped for. Did you hire the wrong person you wonder? Nope. You didn’t have your systems in place. Your team will work with your systems, and your systems will run your business for you. Here’s some steps you can take towards automating your business today:

Get it out of your head – now! Great systems and processes can, not only save you time and money, but increase your income. And a funny thing happens when you write things down, you often think of even better ways to do them! Sounds like some great reasons not to procrastinate, right?

Be prepared to document everything. Write down how to answer the phone, how to save a file in your computer, how to process your payroll – even how you make big decisions. Your aim here, is to be able to ‘drop’ any team member into any role, give them a process, and have them be able to run with it.

Be proactive. Understand that what is obvious to you, may not be to someone else. Anticipate problems, and create pathways for a solution. Revisit your processes regularly with the people who are using them to understand if they are effective or if they require modification.

Share it. Put all your processes together in a manual, and have your team members access it regularly. Train everyone regularly. Make sure there is a process in place that clearly shows how to update these documents so you have the most recent evolution at your fingertips, should it be required.

Having great processes is an awesome way to leverage your current resources. There’s no denying that this can be an overwhelming task when it is in front of you, so just take it one step at a time.
You know the quote – “Tip toe if you must, but take the step”. You will thank yourself later, I promise! And remember, there’s no reason you need to do these things alone, so do join in the conversation. I’d love to hear about your goals, challenges and successes.