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Week of 3/27/23

Morning Minute 3/28/23:

“Are You The Sheriff?

Every manager, coach, team leader, or business owner claims that they want the top performers on their team. When asked why, they share that having top performers ensures better productivity and higher quality performance. Plus, they are most often self-motivated. However, many times these self-motivated top performers have difficult personalities, require constant recognition, and are not the best team players.

What happens when they clash with each other or other team members? They may engage in destabilizing arguments or petty clashes. These lead to distrust, animosity, and/or jealousy resulting in lower productivity and low team morale. They demand that you choose sides and become the “Sheriff.”

This is an opportunity disguised as a problem.

As for myself, I have no interest in being a sheriff. I want team members to be mature enough to discuss issues themselves and solve their own problems. This requires a set process.

Let’s examine this….

In individual and team meetings I emphasize that I have zero interest in being a sheriff. As mature adults, they are expected to resolve their differences with respect. The expectation is for them to talk out their issues, working out solutions by themselves. This is an imperative first step for conflict resolution. If they cannot, or will not, come to a solution, then I will craft a settlement that neither will enjoy.

If they have sincerely attempted to come to an agreement…and failed, then they must acknowledge their failure publicly, asking for my assistance. Then, the 3 of us will meet in a room away from the rest of the team. Here is what happens. Each will speak without interruption one at a time. I will ask questions and take notes of the first person. Then, the other person speaks while I ask questions and take notes.

Before announcing a solution, I share my respect for each of them, as well as their responsibility to the team. I also express disappointment that they could not resolve the issue as adults. Then, I share my settlement which requires compromise from both of them. They are required to accept this and shake hands. Then we return to work. Seldom is there another issue that they do not resolve themselves.

Use this process:

Do not immediately become the sheriff. Ensure a compromise where neither is completely satisfied. Then, require a hand shake. This process requires your top performers to work together for solutions. Then, your entire team wins.

“Are You The Sheriff?”

That is today’s Morning Minute.

Morning Minute 3/31/23:3

“What Training is Most Beneficial”

In a recent online poll, 71% of business owners and senior leaders indicated their managers would get more benefit this year by updating their leadership and team-building skills. Let’s review some possible reasons for this.

Most managers are promoted as a reward for doing a good job in a role where they are only responsible for themselves. That is a mistake. A promotion is not a reward. Individuals eligible for promotion have different skill sets than others. Workers are measured on what they produce. Managers are measured on what the team produces.  

Promotions should be offered to those professionals who have demonstrated some leadership skills and shown the desire to help others succeed. For instance, promoting top salespeople because they were successful selling, and assuming that their good habits and methods will be adopted by other salespeople that they lead, may not create the results you desire. The persons you promote must understand that managers will only be successful if the people they lead are successful.

What training did these managers receive when they were promoted? Did they work with another manager to learn leadership processes? Were they promoted and told to mirror the actions of the previous manager? Were they hired or promoted, and given no additional training? Many times, people are put in leadership positions based on their previous experience and receive no leadership instruction. I vividly remember my boss sitting down at my desk for several hours at a time. When I would ask if I could help him, he said that he “Was just watching me work.” He shared that “You can only expect…what you inspect.”

What are some skills required of leaders? They must write and speak effectively. Understanding basic personality types helps them communicate properly with team members and clients. Leaders must learn how to teach others and how to motivate them. Facilitating effective meetings means learning to delegate tasks, assigning responsibilities to subordinates, and holding them accountable. They must learn how to find and analyze data, how to use that data to make decisions and projections, and how to develop action plans to accomplish team goals.

Being a coach, manager, or supervisor requires knowing how to handle the 4 Ps: People…Process…Product…Promotion.

The success of the person promoted will be determined by what they learn from the training they receive, how they use it to help others succeed, and how well they manage those 4Ps.  


That is today’s Morning Minute.