Monday, November 21, 2011

Your first Impressions

Did you see the photo last week of Willie Walsh (BA) and Michael O'Leary(RyanAir) - one looked very smart, very professional, on the ball, focussed and alert whilst the other looked crumpled, tired, down trodden,resigned and a failure.

It was a serious issue, serious meeting at the Stock Exchange against the government and yet one looked prepared and one certainly did not.

90% of people form an opinion about you in the first 60 seconds.They judge how you look,how you speak, how you act and form opinions based on that information.You cannot stop it happening,it is part of human behaviour. All you can do is manage the message you are sending out.

Start by stopping and thinking about what is your brand,what do you want people to think about you? Professional, trustworthy, credible, dynamic, edgy? What are the five key words to describe you and your business?

People can fail to connect on many levels and often fail an interview before they have even uttered a word.So what more can you do about your first impression?

Start with your wardrobe - how do you look? Do your clothes match the words you described your self as?Are you sure? Ask for feedback.Invest in a professional wardrobe that accuratley represents you.Invest in an Impact Coach

Improve your delivery - develop your breathing.Your voice is your greatest tool.Deep breathing is essential to a great voice.Practice, record yourself speaking.Get your elevator pitch perfect.Pause,think ,listen to what is being said and never interrrupt.Invest in avoice Coach.

Body Language is essential.Lowering your breathing calms your body language down.Your body language should align with the words you are speaking for people to believe you.Posture,deportment and alignment is vital.

Listening to the other person is critical.Connect on every level you can to build the rapport because you may never get another chance if  you don't.

As an experienced Impact Coach in Global Multinationals I know it is always the person who thinks,prepares and demonstrates integrally who they are who is the most successfull.

You are the deliverer of your message - make sure it's congruent with who you really are to be successfull

Friday, November 11, 2011

Stress in the City

Stress - it's always been there and I think it always will be there.

We need a certain amount of stress to function well because our brain and our bodies have the 'fight or flight' response - we just need to know how to use it.

The problem with a lot of people in senior management is that they think they are invincible. They think their IQ is enough. They think EQ (Emotional Intelligence) is 'soft and fluffy stuff'.
However, it has been proven that what makes success is 66.66% EQ and 33.33% IQ - proving that we need both to be successful and healthy.

EQ starts with fully knowing and understanding yourself - self awareness is vital. If you know yourself - your strengths - your triggers - your stressers - your gaps - your vision AND your emotional responses - only then can you manage yourself and lead others to success.

In my experience, senior leaders try to be great at everything. They won't admit to feeling vulnerable and feeling the fear - they think it's a sign of weakness - when actually, I believe, it's a sign of strength. They often don't delegate well and therefore, don't spend enough time with the people that can help them - their team, because they think they should be able to operate effectively alone.

It can be very lonely being THE one in charge.

So what are the signs? The fears and concerns mount, self-management is poor, their behaviour becomes erratic, communication may fail, they may go quiet and they may become more controlling at work and at home!

So what can we do?

We can take the time, we can be brave and we can be courageous - and ask them - what we can do to support them. Organisations can provide coaching support for every senior leader, so they can share their needs with a qualified coach.

What can the leader do?

Learn to self-manage, know when you need support, be prepared to ask for the support - and - take time off to renew your energies!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Celebrating Success

The Launch of ‘Tranforming Teams’ (#TTeams) was amazing last night. I just loved every second – it was a real celebration.
It was awesome to see so many people from different organisations connecting, sharing and learning together.
The mix of public sector with the multi nationals – seeing people there from the media, marketing, legal, accountancy and recruitment was amazing and proved that we can always learn and at some level we all have a lot in common.
The themes united the group, they found that many shared the same issues, they heard about the differences in their leadership styles and businesses.
By being open to listen to others who are ‘different’ and from different backgrounds we can learn so much – and make an even bigger difference – when did you last do that?
My VIP speakers were inspiring, everyone listened to their ‘journey’s’ of development to where they are now. I couldn’t help remembering when I first met them and worked with them – how different they are today. How they are bringing the leadership personality alive to make a difference in the bigger, wider world. I thought back to some of the challenging moments we had together and how they took those challenges and did something with them.
A huge thank you to my VIP speakers – I can tell everyone how they ‘should’ lead better – you told it in an authentic way – as living proof ‘that this stuff really works’!
The evening had a great buzz – everyone learned something which they can use today to be an even better leader. Transforming Teams will help them – it is a guide for your career.
One exercise we did was to ask everyone to think about one of their greatest mentors/leaders they have ever had – who was yours? Who made the biggest difference to you? What did you learn from them? And once they had shared that with the table – we asked them - what do you want your leadership legacy to be? How do you want to be remembered?
Start now or you may have your ladder against the wrong wall – painting the wrong window.
Now do this with your top team – go on be courageous.