RapidStart Leadership

Leading Experienced People: How to Overcome 3 Dilemmas That Make it Hard

RapidStart Leadership

What is it about leading experienced people that makes it so challenging? They know more than we do. They have been there longer. They already have their ways of doing things. Then we walk in and we’re expected to tell them what to do, and when to do it.

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The After Action Review: A Leader’s Guide

RapidStart Leadership

How do you improve your team with an After Action Review? The After Action Review (AAR) is a deceptively simple yet powerful way to stimulate the growth and performance of any group of people.

The Power of Asking Questions: 7 Ways Questions are More Powerful Than Answers

RapidStart Leadership

How can asking questions be more powerful than answering them? In the effort to demonstrate our worthiness to lead, often we find ourselves in a hurry to provide answers. People want guidance, direction, and need to understand priorities.

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Running 50 Miles: 6 Lessons in Perseverance

RapidStart Leadership

What’s it like to run an Ultra-Marathon, and how do you motivate yourself to finish any great challenge? Today’s post will be a little different.

Bad vs. Good: Why Does the Bad Seem to Outweigh the Good?

RapidStart Leadership

“When it comes to Bad vs. Good, why do bad things get all the attention?” ” There’s a struggle between good and bad and it’s happening on our teams. The bad news? The “bad” is far more powerful than the “good.” ” The good news?

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Getting Them to Listen: How to Get People to Hear What You are Saying

RapidStart Leadership

Why should anyone listen to you? If you’re trying to lead people, one of the first challenges you face might be just getting them to listen. This can be doubly challenging if you happen to be newer to the team or younger than the others.

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Seeking Discomfort: 7 Ways to Embrace Uncomfortable Feedback

RapidStart Leadership

No one likes to hear that they are not doing well, have weaknesses, or are not measuring up in some way. As leaders it often falls to us to give this kind of feedback to others, and that can be difficult. But what about receiving it?

Leadership Mistakes: 3 Things to Do When You Really Step In It

RapidStart Leadership

What should the leader do when he makes a mistake? Nobody likes to “step in it,” but leadership mistakes will happen. What you do when they occur makes all the difference. Do these three things well, and you may end up with a stronger team than you started with. Stepping In It.

Stop Social Loafing: 6 Ways to Get Everyone Working

RapidStart Leadership

How come 1+1+1 does not equal 3? You would think that the more people on a project, the greater the output. Sadly, that’s not always the case. A phenomenon called Social Loafing leads some team members to do the minimum possible. They drag down group productivity like a boat anchor.

Who’s in Your Canoe? 5 Things to Consider When Building a New Team

RapidStart Leadership

I’m building a new team; who should be on it? Often we just inherit the teams we lead, but occasionally we have the opportunity to build a new team from scratch. How do you know who to pick? Here are five action steps you can take when building a … Who’s in Your Canoe?

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The Leader Apprentice: 5 Ways to Master the Learning Mindset

RapidStart Leadership

Kennedy said that “leadership and learning are indispensable to each other,” so how do we make sure we keep learning? It’s easy to get caught up in the daily business of getting things done.

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The Leader’s Triple-A Club: How to Navigate the Hazardous Highways of Leadership

RapidStart Leadership

Not long ago, my son called me from Oregon. He was driving some friends to the airport when his car suddenly quit and wouldn’t restart. Beyond attempting to diagnose the problem over the phone, there was little I could do to help from where I was in Minnesota.

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New Leader Checklist: 4 Questions to Ask if You Want to Lead Effectively

RapidStart Leadership

Whether it’s your first leadership position or your fifty-first, taking over can be a challenging business. One key to success? Don’t start out by answering questions; start by asking them.

Optimization: Surprising Lessons in Efficiency from the Ant World

RapidStart Leadership

“How can you optimize a system that’s error-prone?” ” As humans, we are fallable. In our efforts to achieve, produce, and progress, we make mistakes, we misjudge, we stumble. Any enterprise that involves humans will, by definition, be imperfect.

The Ransberger Pivot: How to Win an Argument By Not Arguing

RapidStart Leadership

“Do you ever really ‘win’ an argument?” When someone says something that we don’t agree with, our first impulse is often to contradict or correct them. They are wrong. We are right. Then they argue back. The debate becomes heated, personal, and ultimately counterproductive. No minds are changed.

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Problem Solving Steps: 3 Steps to Take Before You Take Any Steps

RapidStart Leadership

Is the first problem solving step really ‘Identify the Problem?’ If you’ve ever watched someone who is tired or emotional struggling to solve a problem, you know that somebody forgot a step in the problem solving process.

Refining the Plan: Hamburgers on the Tennis Court?

RapidStart Leadership

How do you know if your plan will work? Having a solid plan is one thing; knowing that it will work is something entirely different.

Demotivation: 7 Ways You Might Be Killing Your Team’s Spirit

RapidStart Leadership

Could your efforts to lead actually lead to demotivation? A team’s spirit means everything when it comes to productivity, engagement, and satisfaction. But sometimes, despite our best intentions, the way we lead can become a source of demotivation.

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Leader Isolation: 6 Ways to Conquer Loneliness at the Top

RapidStart Leadership

We are not alone… …but sometimes it can feel that way. Leadership can bring with it a sense of isolation. You seem to be the only one bearing the burden of responsibility, setting the standard, and trying to balance the demands of your boss with the realities on the ground.

Micromanagement: 7 Signs You’re a Micromanager and What to Do About It

RapidStart Leadership

Could you be guilty of micromanagement? The micromanager has been called the bully of the business world, and micromanagement is responsible for killing motivation, eroding trust, and leading to waste and inefficiency.

Could Your Incentive System Be Hindering Performance?

RapidStart Leadership

What if that carrot we offer actually slows them down? In the effort to motivate our teammates, we are quick to offer carrots we think will incentivize them to greater efforts.

15 Pretty Good Virtual Team Building Ideas

RapidStart Leadership

What kind of virtual team building can I do with my distributed team? We all know that teamwork is critical to getting things done through people. Building cohesive teams is already a challenge when everybody is face to face.

Leading Virtual Teams: 12 Powerful Ways to Lead a Team You Can’t See

RapidStart Leadership

How do you lead a team that’s not there? It’s hard enough to be a good leader when your teammates are in the same room. But what about when they aren’t even in the same time zone? When you can’t look someone directly in the eye, things get much more challenging.

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Sharpen Your Thinking: 25 Ways to Hone Your Thinking Skills

RapidStart Leadership

Leaders should be independant thinkers. Whether you are trying to develop a vision statement, solve a problem at work, or influence the team, leaders have to think about where they are going and how they are going to get there.

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The Role of Fear in Leadership: Is it Better to be Feared or Loved as a Leader?

RapidStart Leadership

Is it better to be feared or loved as a leader? It’s an age-old question that seems to keep cropping up. Authoratative writers talk about how leaders need to be open, transparent, empathetic, and willing to listen.

How to be a Great Boss: 9 Ways to Get a 5-Star Rating From Your Team

RapidStart Leadership

What does it take to be a great boss? Some bosses are more memorable than others, and some perhaps you’d like to forget. But what does it take to be a great boss? What distinguishes the one that people remember years later as the leader who made a difference?

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Unstoppable: 12 Ways to Find the Courage to Continue

RapidStart Leadership

“How do your find the courage to continue?” ” Teddy Roosevelt once reminded us that “Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, difficulty.” ” But in our struggles to achieve, that difficulty can be enough to make us want to quit. Where can we … Unstoppable: 12 Ways to Find the Courage to Continue Read More ». The post Unstoppable: 12 Ways to Find the Courage to Continue appeared first on RapidStart Leadership.

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Building Influence – 6 Ways to Earn Respect

RapidStart Leadership

What’s the secret to building influence? Becoming more influential is actually a pretty simple matter. But simple doesn’t mean easy.

Leading Volunteers: How to Keep Them Coming Back

RapidStart Leadership

How do you lead people who aren’t on your payroll? Since moving to Minnesota, I’ve wanted to get engaged locally as a volunteer. Last month I signed up to help at a local agency, and it was a great experience.

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Keeping Your LeaderShip Afloat: 4 Ways to Get Your Head Above Water

RapidStart Leadership

Does it sometimes feel like your attempts at leading are like, oh, I don’t know, paddling a half-submerged pumpkin down a river? . Last weekend I had the privilege of watching people attempt to do exactly that.

What is Your Leadership Legacy?

RapidStart Leadership

One of the greatest challenges for leaders is focusing on the invisible part of what we do. Even as we go about the business of getting things done every day, we are also doing something else.

How to Stay Optimistic: 3 Questions to Ask Before You Give Up

RapidStart Leadership

How can you stay optimistic in the face of failure? Failure is a natural part of doing business, of being human, and of attempting to do things you haven’t done before. And when we fail, there’s a natural tendency to want to give up. It’s hard to stay optimistic.

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Draft Podcast

RapidStart Leadership

What do you do when things go wrong? Leading can seem fun and easy when things are going our way, but it’s when things go wrong that true leaders emerge.

Skills for the Introverted Leader: 6 Ways to Expand Your Comfort Zone

RapidStart Leadership

What skills does an introverted leader need to develop? Statistically, about half of us tend towards introversion (I’m definitely one of them). That fact doesn’t exclude us from being effective leaders.

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Everyday Winners – How to Build Mental Toughness One Day at a Time

RapidStart Leadership

How do you win the daily struggle to get out the door? Temperatures have been dropping lately. Now it takes more effort to get out the door for my morning run. Yesterday I had to analyze the weather. Contend with warm clothing decisions. Wrestle them all on.

How to Tell if You Are Sinking or Swimming as a Leader

RapidStart Leadership

How can 80% of people believe themselves to be above average leaders? One of the many challenges of being a leader is knowing how well you are doing. Are you sinking or swimming? It can be hard to really know, and yet knowing is the key to becoming better at it.

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6 Powerful Ways Leaders Reflect, and how Reflection Makes Your Team Great

RapidStart Leadership

What is reflection for leaders? Reflection sounds like a passive exercise you do by yourself. It seems to involve sitting in a chair in a darkened room and journaling about the meaning of things. Maybe that’s part of it, but I think for leaders there is much more to it than that.

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Stop Yourself! 4 Ways to Grow Your Team by Shutting Your Mouth

RapidStart Leadership

As leaders we are responsible for getting things done through people. But in our rush to see results, we risk becoming our own worst enemy. If we are not careful, our well-meaning actions can breed frustration, cause discontent, and undermine trust.

Space to Think: 8 Ways to Find Quiet in a Noisy World

RapidStart Leadership

How do you find the space to think in a noisy world? We are bombarded all day long by messages telling us what to do, and what to think. Someone else is always trying to put their thoughts into our heads.

Listening Skills for Leaders: 8 Ways to be Sure You Get the Message

RapidStart Leadership

Have you ever been in a situation where you had something to say, but people didn’t seem to be listening? How did that make you feel? I’m guessing your response would not include words like “understood,” or “respected.”

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