Embrace your Curiosity

“At the heart of great leadership is a curious mind, heart, and spirit.”
~ Chip Conley

Embracing the unknown in life and in business can lead to unexpected new routes for growth and success. In the current work culture, we have developed a need to always be absolutely certain and cautious in everything we do. Without the important benefit of curiosity, tasks may become tired, dull, and without spirit and strength. Explore the curiosity that lies within your business or organization.

In our daily routines, we sometimes get too comfortable with knowing that each day will most likely play out the same as it did the day before. Instead of your dependable routine, embrace curiosity to boost work and personal life satisfaction. As an easy example, make new connections with people you don’t always speak to at work, hunt for new learning opportunities, and open your mind to new ideas and opinions from everyone around you.

As a business leader, it’s important to see curiosity as an attribute that should be encouraged within your work environment. While building your company culture, foster curiosity and encourage each colleague by asking open questions. Asking questions that help to advance new ideas and curiosity creates stronger relationships between coworkers and cultivates a more creative and constructive environment.

Embrace your curiosity professionally and personally.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Disagree to Agree

“You must learn a new way to think before you can master a new way to be.”
~ Marianne Williamson, New York Times best-selling author

In the business world, understanding the right way to disagree can form positive ways of thinking and maintain open and healthy work relationships. Instead of simply agreeing to avoid conflict, encourage your team to debate ideas that offer up differing opinions.

Before jumping into a conversation to disagree with a colleague, first listen calmly and thoughtfully then communicate your thoughts with respect. Avoid words that could possibly be confrontational and avoid disapproval of alternate ideas. Never criticize the other person for a differing idea. Use facts and evidence to back up why you think you can offer up a different approach to foster a new solution.

When working through disagreements to come to an overall acceptable solution, make sure to always listen and never demean or antagonize others. Never exclude someone else’s opinions just because you have authority or have experiences that may apply to your perspective. Consider other people’s perspectives, goals, and influence so you can get a better understanding of all sides of the situation.

Having disagreements in the work place and in life is inevitable, it’s how you handle them that can make or break an organization. Learn how to work through disagreements and negotiate to promote a positive work culture.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Alone in the Crowd

“No one is alone, it’s one’s perception, someone can imagine as alone in a group or one can think as in group while he is alone”
~ Muhammad Ibraheem

Sometimes in the work place, we can feel the isolation of keeping our eyes and brains locked onto a screen in order to jump from completing one task to the next until the end of the work day. With the advancements in technology and the limitations put on companies to reduce the opportunity for human interaction and personal expression, it’s not a surprise that people may feel a sense of being alone in a crowd of their colleagues. Take the first step to start enjoying your career by engaging with your peers and incorporating it in your daily routine.

For many people, successful collaboration requires us to see and hear others we are communicating with. Emails, texting and video chatting have all taken away the need for basic face to face interaction. As a business owner encourage employees to build relationships that spark trust, solve a corporate problem and create a more personal and human company culture.

The differences between individuals within the workplace can be the single most important factor in erasing the line between work and social life. Differences can create opportunity as well as alternative perspectives that as a company, can be used as a focal point for new and innovative ideas.

Practice taking a bigger leap when it comes to incorporating personal connections into your work life. Relationships can foster inspiring moments that will only improve your overall happiness.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Authentic Leadership in Business

“When your values are clear to you, making decisions becomes easier.”
~ Roy E. Disney

When we think of leadership in the office, some skills may come instinctively others are learned over time through trial and error. While trying to grow your business or organization, practicing new leadership skills while staying true to your own ideals is key to overall success. Understand a few simple steps to increase authentic leadership skills in the office.

Personal as well as company development goals are always important to share with your employees. Share your personal overall goals to create an open conversation in which ideas and strategy can be shared and to inspire others. As a leader, making employees feel comfortable and gaining trust in your leadership skills will only help you further reach the goals you set.

Sometimes sharing how we approached a situation and admitting we were wrong can be one of the hardest things to do. Understand that we make mistakes and don’t always need to come across as a perfect leader. Create an open work culture and discuss the errors you have made and what you have learned from them. Encourage employees to have the strength to do the same. Recognizing missteps as a team and working through them will help to shine a light on your authentic leadership skills in the office.

To achieve overall growth and happiness within your business and organization, understand how to create authentic leadership skills in the office.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Trendy Business

“Figuring out what the next big trend is tells us what we should focus on.”
~ Mark Zuckerberg

No matter what type of business you’re in, creating a forward-thinking business brand is important when growing your company and to stand out. Trends in business can be promoted in many forms such as social media, merchandising and other forms of advertising and promotional tools. Keeping a focus on your target market, customers and even employees can help to maximize profits in your business or organization. Remember to keep your business trends up to date.

Trying to keep your business “trendy” means creating a brand that tells your story and what you want consumers to remember your business as and to focus on future marketing at the same time. Use social media to create daily updates on products and services to get the word out. Share similar posts and keep audiences following the brand you are trying to create.

Always look for constant improvements and innovations when creating your business brand. With millennials the top buying generation, their goals and wants should be your focus if your brand is targeting that market. It’s important to always be ready and open to change and innovation. From the selfie movement to fidget spinners, it’s important now more than ever to head the pack of popular trends.

Trends can be created and invented for any type of business or organization. Use social media to your advantage to get help your business become and remain cutting edge.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

The Talent of Communication

“The art of communication is the language of leadership.”
~ James Humes

When it comes to communicating, it takes time and patience to practice this unique art form. Every relationship we have and each step we take in our career should require us to make decisions about how we approach specific conversations. Most of us don’t realize how old habits can ruin a conversation. Understand a few reliable practices to effectively communicate with anyone you encounter.

During a conversation with someone you’re trying to engage, it’s important to understand that you should not begin every thought and sentence with “I”.  Listening is often said to be the best communication skill. Eye contact and engagement are the physical positions of strength that should be practiced gaining comfort and familiarity with your audience.

Your choice of words, of course, is also important when communicating with others. Filler words like “um, like and just” can make you sound lazy and uninterested in the conversation. Sometimes we say these words out of habit or nerves, try to add a pause in your conversation to replace the use of these filler words.

Conversational style at company events is very important when trying to advance your career. Plan ahead with your subject matter by thinking about some thought provoking questions you can ask during a one on one conversation. These questions should be interesting, memorable and grab the attention of people around you. Be confident in your questions and get ready for any type of response back.

Solid communication skills can either make or break your reputation within your business or organization. Understand a few steps to make your conversations stronger while advancing your career. Being an engaging and engaged individual will be a benefit to you.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Managing the Hiring Process

“Great things in business are never done by one person.
They’re done by a team of people.”
~ Steve Jobs

As a business owner, looking for a new employee to fit seamlessly into your office culture can be a difficult task. Hiring the wrong person to fill a certain position can take a drastic toll on your company and your team’s morale by wasting time and resources. Understanding the impact of a bad hire can go a long way towards the overall growth of your business.

One of the greatest costs of a poor hire is a lack of productivity while the overall impact may be to cause a team to become dissatisfied and lose interest in doing a good job. Poor performing employees are hard to spot when interviewing potential candidates and it’s important to communicate with current staff to provide feedback about the new hire. Training and retraining employees while utilizing existing staff takes time and energy that your business can’t always afford to dedicate.

While Human Resources has evolved into a science and can be an effective hiring tool, it’s often necessary to also utilize older methods of screening. Often a face to face meeting with the prospective new hire’s peers can help the hiring manager gain a new view of the possibility of a good fit.

Recruiting and training are all part of the cost of a growing business. However managing the hiring process can be a larger expense when not conducted properly. The financial costs of hiring someone inappropriate or without the proper previous experience can be devastating particularly to a small business.

Your business’s reputation can either make or break your business or organization. New hires may be able to add or detract from that reputation. Monitor your company’s brand image on all social media platforms to make sure new hires aren’t making errors that are costing you business.

Hiring new team members is a risk for all business owners. Understand the positive impact of having the right person in the right place and take your time hiring that person.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Over Thinking

“We cannot solve our problems with the same
thinking we used when we created them.”
~ Albert Einstein

Over thinking is something we all do as a way to protect ourselves against making mistakes. This thought pattern can cause us to worry about things that have happened in the past, second-guessing important decisions and cause us to be highly stressed. Rehashing one’s decisions may prevent us from making progress and weaken our resolve long term. Learn how to control your reevaluation habits to become more confident and to accept what has been decided.

Sometimes we tend to recheck our thoughts and decisions without knowing we are doing it. Acknowledging when and how we do this is the first step in realizing these thoughts aren’t productive and won’t lead to positive actions. Re-examining decisions too often restrains you from doing your best.

Over thinking about events that have happened in the past or are going to happen in the future won’t allow you to live in the present. Instead of over thinking something you have made a decision about, train your brain to find solutions to that problem and then put those thoughts to rest. Try keeping a list of solutions or strategies you can use to focus on situations you can control.

Changing what you are physically engaging in can also help alleviate this habit. Exercising on a daily basis, reading a book, or watching a video on a different subject can be a great distraction and allow you to clear your mind.

Just like any other skill, it takes time and dedication to improve. Don’t let over thinking take over your time and energy. Learn how to develop mental discipline to stop over thinking and have a more productive and peaceful thought process.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Receive with Respect

“Respect for ourselves guides our morals, respect for others guides our manners.”
~ Laurence Sterne

To continually build on business development and personal growth, effective feedback is usually necessary. When we hear negative feedback about a project or decision that we took great pains to complete effectively, the natural reaction is to take it personally and consider it negative criticism. While feedback can be painful to hear, it is often the pathway to corrective action that can be beneficial to moving forward.  It often takes great courage to receive criticism with respect and use it as a tool for betterment.

In many cases, our first instinct when responding to feedback is defensive. Train yourself to consider the true meaning of the comment and your reaction.  Feedback may help you improve yourself while refining skills and learning new methods and practices. Take a step back and truly understand the feedback so you can then analyze and plan your next step.

Personal growth often depends on face-to-face interactions with others even though this can be difficult. Instead of sitting back and allowing negative reviews to affect your progress, ask questions and clarify exactly what is expected and turn feedback into a constructive conversation. This will allow you and others critiquing you to feel more comfortable during this interaction.

Don’t let critical feedback set you back and make you feel hostile toward others. Know how to receive corrective action with respect in your professional setting.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results

Earn Respect in the Office

 

“One of the most sincere forms of respect is actually listening to what another has to say.”
~ Bryant H. McGill

Earning professional respect from both peers and employees is important for future success and overall personal fulfillment in your career field. Learn to stop the behaviors that might be holding you back from earning the respect you want and deserve in the office.

You might have already suspected that showing up late to the office or arriving late to a scheduled meeting is a big problem when you are trying to earn respect. Forcing a group of people to wait for you to arrive for a meeting will show that you don’t take your job seriously and more importantly, have no respect for their time. If you must be late, communicate with those you are meeting with. It’s easier than ever to take advantage of a call, text or tweet to inform your meeting partners of a necessary delay.

We have all attended a meeting with someone typing on their computer or using their cell phone. One of the most disrespectful behaviors you can exhibit is to focus on technology during a meeting instead of the speaker or the topic of the meeting. This behavior shows you have no interest in the meeting, the subject or the information being presented and sends a clear message of disrespect.

Of course, having loud conversations on the phone in your office or cubical is considered disrespectful to others around you. The office is a place that should be considered an environment with a professional atmosphere in order to make decisions, deadlines and think creatively without disruption.

Remember to reinforce your own positive habits when you’re trying to achieve a goal. Retraining yourself to avoid a few simple behaviors that might be causing you a loss of respect in the office will help build your career.

Kelly D. Scott
Chairman/CEO
Vistage Florida
better leaders ● decisions ● results