Saturday, May 21, 2011

Authentic Leadership Experience in the Beautiful Waitakere Ranges

Running hot on the back of a successful GM's programme comes an experiential Authentic Leadership Course with a twist.

O.K there a a handful of twists that make this unlike anything you will have tried for leadership development before. In fact just ask anyone who has been on one or check out these testimonials.

Then Come and join us here!!!

Here is one of our graduates:
Wendy Barthow, Manager Merivale Whanau Development Centre, IOSIS
I came to the course uncertain of what to expect, however, having completed this now, I feel like a lot of my internal world has come out, and helped me to make sense and confirm aspects of it.  I believe this is going to enable me to be more effective in my out world.  This has been a life changing experience for me.  Thank you for the opportunity.

Craig Beveridge, Delivery Manager - Australia, Jade Software
Understanding what the team means by authentic leadership and using this as a base for growth is not what I was expecting when I started the course.  I found this perspective a powerful and compelling one though, and I commend Stephen and the team for their vision in this.  Thanks guys.

John Birkin, Facilities Manager, AUT University Akoranga Campus
I wish I could go back in time.  If I had done this course a year ago, my life would be a whole lot more balanced and had more direction.  Now I have goals and targets to work towards.  Thank you.

Richard Currie, Store Manager, The Warehouse, Sylvia Park
 The course had a unique way of helping me discover who I am as a leader.  I learnt after the first few hours that I was on a journey of discovery that brought to light what makes me authentic as a leader.  The course was a vehicle to helping me get there.  This was a truly life changing experience and one I would recommend to anyone to take part in.

Geoff Dickson, Associate Professor, AUT University
In many ways this course takes you a step or two backwards ..... but you can then place two feet on the ground enabling you to make some giant strides forward.  It provides a most invigorating wake-up call.  This course is a great gift.

Juliet Jensen, GM Digital Channels, TVNZ
The Authentic Leadership Course provided more than you could imagine.  Throughout the week you are coaxed along a journey of self discovery and empowerment covering all areas of life.  The end result provides a base from which to launch not just an inspiring leader, but an individual who can fulfill their true potential in all of life's facets.  I should know - it happened to me!

Angela Penteado, Strategic Communicator for Waitakere City Council
The course has been a marvelous gift at a turning point in my career.  It has reminded me of the strengths I have as an authentic leader, quite apart from my technical skills.  I have learned a strategy to play to my strengths, address any gaps, and to enhance my leadership potential.  This will have a direct benefit to myself, my employer and my family going forward, as I will build even more effective relationships and outcomes.

Frank Thomas, Senior Advisor, Planning and Risk Assurance, Maritime New Zealand
Very rarely do you attend a course that changes you from the inside out and challenges you to discover who you really are as a leader.  The Authentic Leadership Course was life changing and a must for leaders inspiring to make a difference in their work places, family and community.

Here is the offer I want to present:  Not only will you have the experience of a life time, professionally, personally, or both, learn new perspectives in a super trusting environment that I think sets the bench mark for any leadership course in new Zealand (I am biased because I coach on our courses and totally believe in what we do and also how we do it -remember this is a passion of mine!)

I hope I get to meet you, I know you will thank me by the end of Day 4 and maybe even earlier.

You do such fantastic work for the people you lead and serve.

Your friend and Coach
Richard Kerr-Bell

Friday, May 20, 2011

A little shift can move the universe (or management career)

"Give me a lever long enough and a fulcrum on which to place it, and I shall move the world." (Archimedes)
Visit the Daniel O'Connell Bridge  Built in 1880 and named after a nineteenth century political leader; recognising the many Irish settlers living in and around Ophir, Central Otago, New Zealand.

This is actually what you can do to leverage your management career. A new role you enjoy in a culture you can thrive in will change what is possible for you.

It can feel like getting stuck, in a rut, or plateau in a career. You know it isn't really going where you thought, how you thought, or becoming listless, so you just keep turning up and ticking things over.

What is needed is for you to find the lever and fulcrum and move your world. Actually they are both at your disposal disguised as the decision to move and taking some kind of action.

Now I'm not suggesting jump into no-job, that just creates more fear and stress especially if you have children or others to consider. I am saying a sideways shift or slight downward movement, or even a move into another industry may provide the leverage to get things started.

I recently had taken a long time to secure  new position. I had applied for a few roles I believed I was more than capable of, but that is not how those hiring saw it. I hadn't gone through the 'traditional' steps and pathway.

However the moment I applied and got a role that might be described as sideways or 'playing for a lesser known team', many opportunities presented themselves and even offers! I had released my own assumptions and energy I was putting into just getting by and feeling stuck, my passion turning to cynicism.

Then it changed.

If you think you are stuck you are. It just might be you have to jump first.

If what you are doing isn't getting you what you want, you have to change something. Like the bridge above,if you want to get somewhere else, you actually have to move!

Be patient, be prepared, and go for it, enjoy your life, enjoy managing.

Your friend and coach


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

What is authentic leadership?

 Authentic leadership and management is a topic close to my heart. We know it when we encounter it and we sure know it when we don't! Because it is close to my heart it gives you a clue as to where we might find this powerful aspect of our lives and professional potential.

I have borrowed a couple of excerpts giving different perspectives of authentic leadership and them I will talk about a powerful experience that literally changes lives, transforming what you thought was good into what you will know is great.

Are you interested in living your life in a way that reflects your deepest passion? Discovering your unique gift is a rare act; “living it” is a soulful act.

What does it mean to speak your authentic voice in any situation?

Here's my definition - it's the ability to recognize and name your real concerns and needs underneath the presenting issues of any situation, while also listening in partnership to hear another's real concerns and needs, in order to find genuine solutions that will work for each person.

Another way to look at "authentic voice" is -- what happens to you when you have difficult conversations where there are differences of opinion or competing objectives, and where those differences could affect how you are regarded?

The following article is from Michael Hyatt and captures some if the aspects key to authentic leadership

Leadership is more than influence. It certainly includes influence, but it is more. I believe it includes at least five characteristics. I call these the five marks of authentic leadership:
  1. Authentic leaders have insight. Sometimes we refer to this as vision, but that usually has exclusive reference to the future. While leaders must have vision, they need more. They need wisdom and discernment. They need to be able to look at complex situations, gain clarity, and determine a course of action. In the Bible, “[The] men of Issachar … understood the times and knew what Israel should do” (1 Chronicles 12:32). This is what I mean by insight.
  2. Authentic leaders demonstrate initiative. They go first. They don’t sit on the sidelines. They don’t ask others to do what they are unwilling to do themselves. Instead, they lead by example. Lt. Col. Hal Moore is a great example of this. Famously depicted by Mel Gibson in the movie, We Were Soldiers, Lt. Moore told his troops, before leaving for Vietnam,
    We are going into battle against a tough and determined enemy. I can’t promise you that I will bring you all home alive. But this I swear, before you and before Almighty God: that when we go into battle, I will be the first to set foot on the field, and I’ll be the last to step off. And I will leave no one behind. Dead or alive, we will all come home together, so help me God.”
  3. Authentic leaders exert influence. It’s no coincidence that influence and influenza (the flu) come from the same root word. Real leaders are contagious. People “catch” what they have. People are drawn to their vision and their values. They are able to gather a following and move people to act. To change metaphors, they are like human wave pools, creating a ripple effect wherever they go.
  4. Authentic leaders have impact. At the end of the day, leaders make a difference. The world is changed because of their leadership. They are able to create real and lasting change. Unless something has shifted, they aren’t leaders. They are only entertainers. There is a big difference. The measure of leadership cannot be found in the leader; it is found in the impact the leader has on his or her followers.
  5. Authentic leaders exercise integrity. Not every leader is benevolent. Adolf Hitler was a leader, as was Mao Zedong and Josef Stalin. They had insight, initiative, influence, and impact. Yet their lives were not integrated with the highest values. Integrity—or the lack thereof—ultimately determines the quality of a person’s impact. In a sense, this is the foundation of authentic leadership.
This is where I want to share about the programme we run for managers and leaders and all who aspire to be authentic leaders, to enjoy management, enjoy your vital and important role.

I have worked with many wonderful people just like you and I have seen transformations that come form nowhere, intrinsic knowledge that emerges over the course of our few days together.

I wish we could do a lot more for so many of you who work day in and day out knowing how influential and significant the many little things you do are, so please take a look at the many offerings we have - I know you will be pleasantly surprised at the Authentic Leader that develops or is uncovered from within.
Paihia in Northland - Few things ground us like the seaside, where we find our authentic selves.

Take a look, I am very excited about the next course at the beginning of June. See you there.

Your friend and coach

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Why getting your ducks in order is so important

Talk about managing a project!

Anyone who watched the final episode of Master Chef New Zealand this week, would have felt something for the runner up.

Their last task was to make macaroons and then stick them to a tower all within a time limit. 'Jax' completed her tower first and seemed to have finished her macaroon Tower with more accuracy than Nadia's, then as they congratulated each other and stood back, the tower that Jax built slowly then quickly fell apart.

As it happened, both had made fantastic macaroons, but sadly, the tower that was left standing left no doubt who the winner would be.

Now I don't normally watch this programme, but it certainly reminded me about doing the proper ground work. About spending more time on the substance than the 'flash', whether it is the products quality, service, relationships, finances, professional development or staff recruitment.

I have worked with managers who have got into a habit of hiring fast, with little consultation form those who know a few things. It is so tempting, time pressures, other commitments and so on -but as the macaroon tower attests, short term gain, often ends in long term pain if the ground work isn't done well. If the ducks are not in a line.

Build a strong base with substance, take or create the time necessary and if you have to make quick decisions, don't compromise on your foundation or the values and vision you are built on.

What one small action could you take to ensure those things you tend to rush, get a little more attention?

Look after your good self alright!
Your friend and coach


Sunday, May 15, 2011

What is the view like at your place?

If you want to enjoy managing, at least enjoy what you see.

I was in Wellington last weekend and my sister, brother in law and I walked the water front with its magnificent art, sculpture, secrets to be discovered, a pathway that made life interesting and drew us onward.

It is easy to make small inexpensive changes to create a work environment that is at least interesting and that people are happy to come to work to. Heck, they might even be happy to show their friends and welcome guests.

Do you have a part of your place that you would rather hide? That you are always commenting on, something like, "We need to get that fixed", or "we must replace that".

Do you have a wish list from your employees or reports about the little things that could make their work more efficient, or where they work more enjoyable?

Now I know you may not be Santa Claus, or that your budget could cope with a makeover, but knowing what the little things are, could give you an idea about where to start.

Here are a couple of shots of one part of the waterfront I enjoyed.

Take a second look when you go to work next, or get a friend to come in and have  a look, what do they notice immediately?

Take care, what one small thing could make your place great?

Your friend and coach