Week of 2/12/24

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Morning Minute 2/13/24:

“Successfully Navigating Your New Assignment!”

Great News!

You successfully managed a facility with 32 people in 4 departments.

You were promoted to manage a facility with 197 people in 11 departments.

You need a template as you begin Your New Assignment.

As you meet with your boss, get that person's view of the performance and abilities of the team leaders in the new facility. Bear in mind that your boss may have incomplete or inaccurate information. Also, get a clear picture of what key performance items (KPIs) you will be measured on. Take notes and document this conversation.

Next, before your arrival at your new facility, do your own research. Examine sales and production reports, profit and loss statements, and the employee files of the department managers you will be leading. Question your CFO about any line items that you do not understand.

After your document examination, and prior to your arrival onsite, conduct a series of 1-on-1 Zoom or phone interviews with your team leaders. Ask the same questions of each, concerning their views of their performance, their problems, and their recommendations for improvements. Document and/or record these sessions.

On day #1, be sure to get in early, when the first team members arrive or the shift changes. In greeting each person, introduce yourself and thank them for their efforts. There is a great chance that many of these team members have never seen nor spoken with their old boss. This activity will have you and them see each other as real people. Visit each department that day, using the same template. This process is called MBWA, Managing By Walking Around.”

On day #2, facilitate a group meeting with your managers. Without sharing who said what during your initial electronic interviews, list the improvement opportunities that were shared. Encourage participation, however, make no changes that day. Simply take notes. Then schedule 1-on-1 in-person meetings with each manager. Before ending this group session share that if you make a recommendation, you expect them to give it as much consideration as they expect from you, when they make a recommendation. However, when you tell them to do something, you expect it to be done.  

There are many ways to begin a new assignment. You will use your background, personality, and communication style to lead your new team. Having an initial template to guide you, will help ensure a more effective transition for both you and your team. It will also keep you and your boss focused on the same KPIs.

This process will help you: “Effectively Navigate Your New Assignment!”

That is today’s Morning Minute!

Morning Minute 2.16.24 How Best to Manage Your Time!

Morning Minute 2/16/24:

“How Best to Manage Your Time!”

Our recent Morning Minute on “Navigating Your New Assignment” generated several inquiries concerning Time Management.

Most of them asked: “How can I get more done, without working more hours?” Let’s examine 1 possible cause and 2 excellent solutions.

Those of you who feel the need to make ALL the decisions for your team, use one or more of these reasons. A) “Because I have the most experience, I am the best person to make decisions.” B) “By delegating decision-making, I will lose control.” Or, C) “I don’t trust others to make the best decisions.” If you use any of these reasons, you are a micro-manager.

Micro-managers live in a jail they built for themselves. By making all the decisions, they have everyone bring them their problems. Team members will not make decisions, because they refuse accountability. Micro-managers never attract take charge people, nor train their people to make good decisions. Thus, all their time is spent solving problems dumped on them by their own people. If this describes you, own it, and resolve today to stop being a micro-manager.  

Let’s visit with 2 influential trainers who have given us a path to accomplish more, by working smarter instead of harder.

Dale Carnegie has given us a 4 question process to train others how to solve problems. When someone comes to you with any issue or problem ask these 4 questions…

1.    What exactly is the Problem? (Require that they clearly identify the problem).

2.    What Circumstances, People, or Process caused the Problem? (There are usually multiple issues. Make sure they list each one).

3.    What are the possible Solutions?(There is always more than one. Never accept just one).

4.    Which solution do YOU recommend? (This creates their accountability.)

Use Dale Carnegie’s 4 questions each time a problem is brought to you. This process will teach your people how to use critical thinking to solve problems on their own.

Stephen Covey gives us a 4 quadrant solution for time management based on urgency and importance. Which of these does your problem fall into? Act accordingly!

Quadrant 1: Urgent and Important                   Action: DO IT NOW

Quadrant 2: Not Urgent, but Important         Action: PLAN TO DO LATER

Quadrant 3: Urgent but Not Important          Action: DELEGATE TO OTHERS

Quadrant 4: Not Urgent & Not Important         Action: ELIMINATE FROM SCHEDULE

To summarize: Use Dale Carnegie’s 4 questions to help you solve problems. Use Stephen Covey’s 4 quadrants to manage your time effectively.

And, don’t be a Micro-Manager!

That is today’s Morning Minute.