Braving Trust and Credibility

So I thought this was really good from a colleague this week. 


How to build trust and credibility in the workplace:


Credibility is about being “convincing and believable” and results from “expertise and experience.”


Trust is believing strongly in the honesty, reliability, character, and effectiveness of a person.”


BRAVING


Boundaries – Have good boundaries–respecting yours and having my own; show others respect in words and deeds. 


Reliability – Be someone who is both reliable (can be counted on)  and is authentic.


Accountability – Hold others and yourself accountable; we all own our mistakes, apologize and make amends. 


Vault – Keep information in confidence.


Integrity – Hold courage over comfort; choose what’s right over what’s fun, easy or fast; practice and not just profess values. 


Non-judgmental – Believe the best in people even when they occasionally disappoint you. 


Generosity – Offer and ask for help from others, and give generously of yourself in time and effort. 


No offense to anyone…the last thing they said was a little spicy for the workplace (but I know it was meant well):  “Good conversation with others should be like a miniskirt–short enough to retain interest and long enough to cover the topic.” 😉


(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)

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The Culture Key To Organizational Success

As I continue to learn more about organizational success strategies, I am coming to understand that the underlying culture of the organization is so very fundamental to its success.


I believe this is especially the case in terms of three critical competency areas:


– Communication – needs to be timely, constructive, multi-directional, and with emotional intelligence.


– Trust – must be be based on honesty and integrity including consistently supporting the success of everyone professionally and as a organization. 


– Collaboration – must be be anchored in respecting, valuing, empowering, and rewarding each and every person for their views and the contributions, both individually and as team members, and in treating diversity and collaboration, as a true force-multiplier. 


If any of these elements are missing or broken then it does not seem to me that the organization will be able to be successful for the long term.


Organizational success is built on ingredients that strengthen the ties of leadership and individuals and that foster contribution as individuals and as team members. 


No amount of smart, innovative, and even hard work, in my mind, will make up for shortfalls in these critical organizational success factors. 

So when planning for organizational success, make sure to build these in from the get-go. 


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Money Makes The World Go Round

almight-money-worship

I remember from years ago hearing this song called, “Money makes the world go around.”


It’s an unfortunate song. 


“The clinking clanking clunking sound.”


Then this week, I saw this sign in someone’s office. 


It was hung under a framed dollar bill, and said:


“VERY IMPORTANT MONEY FIRST”


It doesn’t say G-d first, or family, or integrity, or compassion, or anything meaningful and good. 


No, instead just money. 


What is wrong with people?


Yes, we all need money to live.


Life isn’t free. 


There are bills to pay and money to be saved for a rainy day.


But, “money first”???


“Very important!”


There is definitely something wrong with some people’s values.


They think:


To hell with doing the right thing if you can make lots of money.


To hell with being honest in business if you can make more money.


To hell with earning a decent day’s pay for an honest day’s work.


No, to some misguided people, it’s simply money first. 


And money also means power.


More, more, more…at almost any cost that is. 


Sell your souls to the devil for a buck fifty.


Is the temporary satisfaction that money can buy you really worth it.


No, money is not first, and never should be. 


Money is a means to an end, but never an end in itself.


Money is not the root of all evil, but perhaps underlying greed is. 


Take that awful sign down and the dollar bill in the shiny frame at the very top of the wall too! 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Wishy Washy, Pishy Poshy

Leadership No-Nos.jpeg

In school, we had one teacher who always used to say, “You’ve got to call a spade a spade.”


Another used to tell us, “Never hesitate, act decisively, do what you need to do.”


These people were inspirational!


But these days when it comes to national and homeland security, what’s the world looking like:


– WISHY WASHY–We can’t speak directly and say who the enemy even is.


AND


– PISHY POSHY–We won’t act decisively in defending the nation and moreover, we acknowledge that there isn’t even a strategy.


It’s like what happened? 😉


(Source Graphic: Andy Blumenthal)

Getting Your Message Out With Impact

Car Lease

There is an old Jewish parable about the body parts arguing which is most important. 


Each makes it’s case that without that part, we just couldn’t function. (No jokes here now!)


But in the end, the tongue that harnesses the power of speech demonstrates that it is most important, because it is through our words that we may live or die. 


– Say the right thing–something smart and influence the masses–and you can change or even save the world.


– Say the wrong thing–something stupid, inflammatory, and damaging–and it can literally mean your or someone else’s life.


From an early age, we come to recognize that communication is so important to our success. 


Hey, I need a bottle or diaper changed…please!


Or answer the (interview) questions well, and you can land yourself in the best schools and jobs and even with the best ladies. 🙂


Those that succeed with communication, can we make themselves and their positions heard, understood, and accepted.


What are some common communication strategies people employ?


Well as we’ve all learned, it’s not always the one who is the boldest, screams the loudest, or repeats themselves the most that wins the argument–although at times, that too can work when force of debate, undeterred passion, and a little crazy can hammer the points home. 


Having the best laid out and most rationale argument–some people will rightfully be influenced by logic and common sense. 


Sincerity, integrity, honesty, and appealing to people’s gut and emotions–this certainly goes a long way as many people are driven by their feelings as well as their instincts and genuine character assessment of others. 


Making people confront what scares the hell out of them–fear is a big motivator for action and everyone is afraid of something and usually many things. 


Oh, of course, the religious argument that “It’s what G-d wants” and there will be fire and brimstone if you don’t do it that way–well reward and punishment, heaven and hell, divine justice–that certainly will move masses. 


“The pen is mightier than the sword.”


For those who can effectively harness the power of their speech and intellect, the sky is the limit. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Talking It Cryptic

Speaking

So for a while when I received weirdly worded communications from others, I thought “Gee, this person doesn’t know how to communicate!”


They aren’t saying what they mean or aren’t saying it clearly, and I am having to decipher it, read between the lines (more than usual) and certainly not always getting it right. 


I seriously thought some of these people needed to go for remedial communications and project management training, and was more than willing to send them.


Then, I started to see the bigger picture and context and it was beginning to all make sense.


The terse messages, the cryptic language, the dancing around the topic…these were not (necessarily) because the person couldn’t communicate well, but it was intentional!


No, they weren’t trying to mess with me.


They were afraid to say what they really wanted to say–not to me, but generally speaking.  


Why?


Conjecture, but perhaps they didn’t want “it” so explicit, they didn’t want a flagrant (unnecessary) trail, they didn’t want to potentially get in any trouble. 


So they truncate, obfuscate, used “code” words (not real code, symbolic) and otherwise made the communications so vague that they had plausible deniability or could interpret it just about any which way they wanted.


Ah, sort of a “get out of jail free card”–self made, signed, sealed, and delivered.


This is the art of being cryptic!


Fear and overly strict political correctness is not a good thing when what you really need is clear and honest communications from folks.


We do ourselves a disservice by “playing games,” keeping hidden agendas, and protecting ourselves over the necessity to get the mission accomplished and done well.


Perhaps when people are caught between competing masters and agendas, they are “forced” to do this to get the job done, stay alive, and in the important game we all must play in life.


Ink a dink a bottle of ink the cap fell off and you stink…got that?  😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Traits To Be Prez

The personality to be President:


1. Experience, Diplomacy


2. Direct, Honest, Strong, Results-oriented


3. Passionate, Dedication, Survival of the Nation


A short interview with Andy Blumenthal


(Source Video: Dannielle Blumenthal)