Are You Listening?

7 08 2009

Listening is a vital discipline for any manager or leader. This is especially true for influence leaders.  In the beginning of a thing, whether it be a project, a social event or something else, leaders who weave active listening into their repetoire will always get a better result and come much closer in the end to what the customer, bride, manager is asking for.  And all involved with a team where the lead is a good listener will have a better disposition.  Team morale will  be higher because the influence leader knows how to consult and take the information and transform it into something tangible that will have meaniful and measureable impacts.  For instance, over my 13 years as a  lead/program manager there have been times when I’ve had to listen to team member issues “off the record” in confidence.  That meant that I  could not use the information in a way that would reveal who told me because I agreed to listen in confidence, I had to honor the request  to maintain or build further trust from that team member.  This is a very important concept because without trust you have nothing.   Revealing that team members name sometimes is tempting because it seems like the easiest way to get the job done, but it would a mistake. It violates the principle of active listening because I would only be choosing to hear what I want to hear and ignoring the fact that I was asked to keep it in confidence.  I’m not talking about anything illegal or immoral here, since of course that would be a different situation and would need to be handled differently.  I was able to take the information and influence managers to make adjustments that resulted in more efficient processes which saved time and money without ever naming anyone.  That is what influence leaders do, we actively listen, which builds a bridge of trust, which opens the lines of communication, which equips us to make positive and impactful change.





Momma Gotta Go

14 07 2009

I was talking to my wife this morning about her trip that she will be taking in a few days.  She will be gone 3 whole days…Ooooo Wee.  And she mentioned that she was happy that she has a husband that will not refuse to let her take trips for respite and relief from time to time.  Not that I could stop her, but I could complain and grumble if I wanted to, whichwould be just as bad.  She also said that there are many wives that don’t have such a liberty.  I want to challenge the husbands out there to do this for your wives.   Believe me, you want to do this.  It will reinvirogate her in more ways than one and you will get a chance to bond with the kids in ways you can’t do with Mom around.  If you have  kids ages 6 and above, heck, they will take care of you.  They know the house routine better than you do.

I’ve been married for 12 years and get-away time for mommy is one of the best keys to a happy marriage there is.  So, if you have a home like mine where you bust it everyday from 8-5 away from home and she works it everyday from 8-5 at home with 3 or so kids, you will want to incorporate this, give-mommy-some-time-to-herself principle.  It will keep your marriage healthy in intimacy, sex, love, joy, peace… and I could keep going and I’m not joking.    Have Your Say by leaving  your comments.





Seize Your Moment: Realize Your Dream

2 07 2009

And he said unto them, Hear, I pray you, this dream which I have dreamed.Genesis 37:6 KJV

Read Genesis Chapters 37, 39 – 41

1. What a Dream. Joseph had to be shocked and devastated by the devious plot of his brothers to sell him into slavery.  As shocked and devastated as he must have been, after arriving at Potiphar’s, his new master in Egypt, he managed to get about the business of making the best of of his situation.  Joseph successfully rose to the top of every situation, no matter the predicament.  Whether he was a son, a slave, a prisoner, or a citizen, he always persevered to a position of favor and authority.  While in prison, Joseph’s time had come to realize his dream and he seized his moment in Gen 40:14 where he interprets the dream of the baker and the cup bearer.  Having used his gift, he was later summoned by a troubled Pharoah to interpret his dreams and soon found himself second in charge of all of Egypt where eventually his brothers and his father would be subject to him as in his dream.

Questions: (1) What are some of the character traits that Joseph portrayed throughout the scripture? (2) Through each very difficult circumstance, Joseph remained faithful to God.  How did he do it?

2. Practical Life Lessons.  As we look into the life of Joseph, we see that life is not always easy and that there will be seasons of fruitfulness and seasons of barrenness.   God shows us through Joseph, that we can  be ready for whatever comes our way.

Questions: (1) In Genesis 47 during the years of plenty, Joseph put away 20% of all the produce of the land;  Is this amount still relevant today?