Home Join Make A Dent Members Dashboard Speaker Coaching Webinars Contact

Search This Site

7 Ways To Stop Unwittingly Stealing
From Your Organization And Limiting Your Success

I'm Shelley Holmes and for the past 20+ years I've been a leader in and a high performance coach for companies around the globe with revenues in excess of $116 billion dollars. In 2003 I was designated as one of the 50 greatest mentors in the world and included in the international best seller of the same name.

Here at Make A Dent Leadership we've helped thousands of leaders to use more of their potential so they enjoy the promotions they want, higher incomes, improved workplace and personal relationships ... so that they are able to make the dent in the universe they want to. And I've got some amazing training for you.

In this course, 7 Ways to Stop Unwittingly Stealing From Your Organization and Limiting Your Success, I've got three modules for you. In today's session I'm going to share with you two concepts.

  1. The first is the core strategy/mindset that I share with all the remarkable leaders that I work with, and why that mindset transforms the way they lead and show up at work.

  2. The second concept is the core influencing skill that high performance leaders use to drive improved relationships ... and I bet you have at least one relationship that could be improved.

What I want to emphasize with you is that this is not just theory. These are tips, strategies and ideas that have been proven, over and over, by myself and the thousands of leaders I've worked with. Certainly, these concepts are based on research but they are also tried and tested. So you get the best of both worlds, well-researched theory, shown beyond a shadow of a doubt to work.

We are going to cover a lot of ground in today's session, so get ready to take lots of notes, and make sure you download the worksheet that accompanies this training as it will help you to follow along.

Before we go any further I need to warn you about two things that could hold you back as you go through this training. Either two of these things could stop you dead in your tracks.

The first is the thought of "I knew that" Often times we blind ourselves by thinking I already knew that or already seen it before. Don't do that. I'm sure you've seen people using these ideas and tactics because these are universal principles. It is one thing to know about something and quite a different thing to embed it in to your DNA. I'm going to show you how to do this.

Another thing that can hold you back is, "I disagree!" I know it is easy to go there and some of the things I am going to teach you may seem counter-intuitive or even strange, but I think they will all begin to make sense for you pretty quickly.

I've coached/run workshops for thousands of leaders and I've seen them applying these ideas and watched their lives flourish as they move in to their potential as a leader.

Does Your Employer Hold The Keys To Your Success?

Before we get started

Write down:

  • who you work for
  • how many years
  • the position you currently hold
  • what you earned last year
  • the position you would like to hold by, and when
  • what you would like to earn

Go ahead take a moment to pause and write down the answers to these questions ... I really would like you to write them down if you could, because it really will underscore something for you later on.

If you answered the questions above by putting in the name of the company you work for, you already are adrift in your thinking.

Understand This ... You Are In Business For Yourself

You need a paradigm shift ... because the reality is that who you work for is yourself ... you just happen to provide services to the organization that you work with, who is your number one customer.

It is time to start thinking of yourself as a business-owner ... Accountable for your own business success. Your business is Your Name Incorporated. No-one else is responsible for, or actually even really cares about your success much as you do.

And in every business there are three very interested parties you have to keep happy ... or you go out of business. The shareowners, the customers and the employee. To survive a business needs to provide products or services that people are happy with, to thrive a business needs to create raving fan customers ... think of organizations like Apple, Zappos, Virgin.

Day in day out you go to work for one customer, one shareowner and you have one employee (yourself). How well is your business thriving? Is your customer a raving fan? Is your employee and shareowners over the moon with how your business is going?

Personal Life Business

When you are working from the mindset that you are an employee at some level you are giving up responsibility and accountability for your personal success.

If You Have An Employee Mindset ... You Are Likely Giving Away Some Responsibility For Your Success

Most people who see themselves as employees have an iceberg belief that they are dependent upon the company for their success. That the company should provide the vast majority of their learning and development, that the company holds the keys to your to your financial success and your emotional success (Who hasn't gone home and said, "Give me space I've had a stressful day.")

The reality is what ever your tax return showed you earned last year from the organization you work for ... that is what the marketplace is willing to pay for your current skill-set, mind-set, capability and more importantly what you believed your business was worth.

When you make the decision that you are a business owner who happens to have one major customer; you approach your life and your work with a completely different perspective.

When you shift your mindset from employee to business owner fully responsible for the success of my business you can easily see where, how and why you need to improve your business, which will result in improving your economic well-being and your quality of life.

The Landscape is Changing How Are You Staying Relevant?

Like all business' the landscape of what your customer wants is constantly changing and growing. To stay relevant in the marketplace you must be providing the products and services your customer wants. You need to be aware of what your customer wants (now and into the future). You need to be willing to change and/or improve your offering to the marketplace in order that you not just stay in business, but that you flourish.

Let’s illustrate with an example, imagine your local coffee shop. How does that shop owner keep you coming back? Is it because he or she greets you by name, knows your favorite brew, asks after you personally, knows a little about you? If you had someone treating you well, who cares about you and is serving you great coffee, would you be tempted to go and try another café shop? It’s unlikely. They’re providing you exactly what you want, making you feel important and even making suggestions about new things you could try ... you’d stay a dedicated fan of his or her business.

But imagine there have been several new cafes opening up recently and you know that your café owner is feeling the pinch of competition.

And could you imagine that local coffee show owner coming to you and saying ... "Listen, I'd like to grow and expand my business, and I'd like to do a course in marketing and another to upskill myself as a chef and another on how to manage people. Would you please pay me some money to go on these courses?" You'd think he or she is nuts, right?

As much as you like him or her, you aren’t going to pay for growing his or her business.

How Strong Is Your Business Plan?

Yet the mindset of most employees is just that ... wait for the organization to send me on a course, or I am doing some extra study or extra work, off my own bat, because I have to, to keep my job.

Imagine shifting your mindset from a I have to do this, to I want to do this. There is a world of difference between thinking you have to do something, than thinking I want to do this.

Instead of thinking about what the organization has to do to keep you happy or you have to do to keep a job, you are focused on, "How can I make my business flourish?"

How much more powerful will you be when you are thinking about how do I get my business to be world-class? How do I get my business so that the employee (you) is excited and thriving? How do I work more effectively with my business partners (the people you work with), to make MY business thrive?

So, do you have a business plan that makes you a business that has raving fan customers?

Have you a set of KPI's that you use each year to judge your business upon?

And rest assured you shouldn't just rely upon your performance appraisal, as a way to judge the success of your business, that will keep you in pack of average ... it certainly won't be setting you apart.

For example, think of your favorite restaurant. Would you complete a survey (performance appraisal) for them if they asked? Most likely.

But wouldn't you have stopped visiting this restaurant a long time before their survey if they weren't giving you what you wanted? And 97% of people say that at some point they have visited a business that they have vowed they would never return to and again said they didn't provide feedback.

That's the key here.

You can't afford to sit around and wait for feedback.

You have to be anticipating what your customers want.

Certainly you can check in and ask what you can improve upon ... but the reality is you probably already know where you don't excel, know what it is you do that is holding you back. And the danger is, if you are doing ok, you may not feel the drive and energy to shift from ok to exceptional.

Be careful about that dangerous slippery slope.

I don't want to frighten you, but just recently I worked with an organization that went through a major restructure, and a number of their managers who were doing ok, and who had been doing ok for a lot of years with this organization are no longer there. The ones that are still there are the ones who have made their customer a raving fan.

And, as I mentioned before, no one really cares whether your business succeeds or fails.

For example, I have a mower man that has been doing my lawns for the past couple of years. He's a family man and is a very nice fellow. However, several times I've said to him I want him to go the extra mile for me, not just mowing but also weeding the garden beds and generally tidying up - just tell me what extra I have to pay.

However, he doesn't do it. He wants to save me money. So, as much as I like him I'm about to get another gardener.

Someone who will notice what needs fixing, what needs to happen in order to make my yard look pristine, without me having to think about it.

Your business is no different.

When I first learned this concept I was working for a large multi-national and it completely transformed how I approached my job.

No longer did I give any responsibility to the organization I was working for, for my business thriving, on every level - financially, emotionally, intellectually, professionally. Because like a lot of people, at some level I had given over some power to the organization.

I made the decision to invest in myself ... in my own learning and development so that I could be at the leading-edge in my field and my life. To apply what I was learning and share it with my team so that they too could be at the leading-edge. Since then it is very rare that I spend less than $10,000 per year on my own personal development - in fact many times it has been significantly more than $10,000 and often times in years where I struggled to find the cash. However, that investment has paid off in droves.

Personal Development

I've shared this concept with hundreds of people at all levels of organizations, and it is transformational. Helping your people to see that working interdependently as a service provider, as a business owner with your major customer (the organization you are providing your services to) is very liberating and provides for fantastic results for both the individuals and the customer (the organization).

Giving yourself this freeing mindset and sharing it with your people is a very powerful thing to do.

When you are working from the mindset that I am in business for myself, fully responsible for my own success in business - then you'll start to ask yourself better questions. You'll start asking yourself, "Where, how, why, do I need to improve my business offering?" You'll start taking inspired action. Do that and the result will be improved quality of life and economic well-being.

A bit like a business that doesn't remain competitive and relevant in the market place, doesn't keep up-to-date and reinventing itself ... you will go the way of typewriters - out of business. If you are still selling typewriters while everyone is using tablets and smartphones you'll fail.

Expecting or waiting for someone else to take responsibility for improving your business is likely to put you in jeopardy.

In a few days time I'll give you the ability to access the "Thinking Like A Business Owner" module where you'll be able to set up KPIs for your business, create your own vision and mission statement and get more details on this mindset of being in business for yourself.

As you well know for any business to thrive, you must build great relationships with your customers, your suppliers, and other influencers. As the owner of your business, how well are you tracking in terms of getting along with others?

Because rest assured you cannot achieve in life if people don't like, respect and want to work with and for you.

As a business owner fully responsible for your business' success you must really fine-tune your capability at influencing others. In part two of today's module, which is titled Do You Have Ticking Bomb Relationships you'll discover a quick and easy method for you to be able to work successfully with just about anyone.

Do You Have Ticking Bomb Relationships?

Is there one person at work that you just don't get? Or someone who approaches things so differently from you that you find it hard to relate to them?

Every day we have to work with people whom we get along with ... and others we'd rather get along without! People who are the opposite to us in the way they think, act and their temperament. And those very differences can sometimes drive us nuts!

And yet for the sake of our teams and our organizations, we need to make these relationships work ... we have to get along with those crazy, mixed-up people who just don't seem to be on our wave-length.

Here's the deal.

  • If you can't figure out how to influence most people,
  • if you can't be flexible in how you treat people,
  • if you end up annoying many people around you ...
  • then you won't be a successful leader ...
  • you probably aren't getting the results you are being well paid to achieve ....
  • you are probably putting the brakes on ...
  • maybe not a dead stop
  • but certainly a slowing down of your promotions and your personal and professional success
  • .

Day in day out, to be successful, you must excel at getting others to go along with where you are leading.

Toss Out The Golden Rule

The way others respond to you is often a direct reflection of how they feel you have treated them. And if you try using that Golden Rule we've all been taught and absorbed .... Treat others the way you like to be treated ... well you are likely to fail miserably!

Imagine, you are a person who likes to think carefully through a decision, have all the details and have time to look at the consequences of your decision from all angles, how annoyed do you think you'll feel if you are working with someone who keeps pressuring you to make decisions fast, with only big picture information and tells you not to worry about any problems that might arise, we'll fix them later.

It is these types of things that lead from a niggling dis-satisfaction with someone, through to all out war.

And, whilst if everyone thought and acted like you, it might make for a harmonious workplace, it probably won't make for a successful one.

If you are the 'deliberate, detailed decision-maker type' and everyone was like you ... well you might never get anything done on time, or get too bogged down in details. Likewise, if you are the 'big-picture, we'll figure out the details later' type of decision maker, you might have a lot of activity happening in the business, but it might not be the right activity or maybe you waste a lot of time going back and fixing up problems.

And this is the challenge you'll continually face in your leadership career. It is that very diversity in the way people think, behave and get things done that you need to create a great balanced team, yet it is also that very diversity that creates the conflicts and angst that rattles all teams.

So, if you are going to throw out the golden rule and instead of giving someone else what you need, give them what they need - how do you figure out how they want to be treated? Certainly you can ask others how they like to be treated ... and I encourage you to do that with the people you work closely with. However, you won't always be able to do that (for example, meeting a new client). And sometimes the people you work with won't tell you how to treat them - mostly because they haven't stopped and thought about it themselves!

But they will give you clues day in and day out if you are attuned to looking for them. They'll give you plenty of clues as to their preferences for solving problems, making decisions and interacting with others. You just need to be savvy enough to pick up on those clues!

I love using the DISC model to help myself and others figure out how to more capably and effectively influence others. Using the DISC model you'll discover there are two main questions you can ask yourself in order to figure out how to treat someone more closely to the way they wanted to be treated.

Identifying The Four Styles

So what are those two questions?

The first is ... Is the person I'm interacting with judging by their tone, their body language and their words; are they more outgoing or more reserved as they are interacting with me?

Outgoing: Speak and move with more energy, gestures, and facial expressions. These people readily, willingly share their feelings and thoughts whether you want them or not ... anything is open to discussion ... nothing is off limits.

They make decisions on gut feel, emotions. They may 'talk with their hands' as you converse. They may often be late to meetings or rush into the room at the last minute.

Reserved: Speak and move more quietly, with more guarded gestures or fewer facial expressions. They will often be a little early to meetings and enter the room slowly and carefully. Whatever they are feeling inside they don't share easily or willingly with you. Poker face.

How about you? How do you think you come across most of the time? An open book or cards close to the chest type?

If you haven't already downloaded the handout go ahead and draw a horizontal line on a piece of paper - on the left hand side place the word Reserved and on the Right hand side place the word Outgoing. Then number evenly from 1 to 4 across the line. With 1 being reserved and 4 being outgoing. Where would you rate yourself? Think about a few people you work with. Where would you rate them?

So, the first decision we make is ... Is this person coming across as more open or closed.

The second decision - and this is what makes it easy. Is, is the person coming across as more task or relationship focused?

Task-oriented people tend to focus more on getting the job done or accomplishing the goal - get it done and get on to the next thing. They take pleasure from looking at what they accomplished. More focused on getting the job done, than getting to know the other person. When you first meet with them there is little, if any, chitchat, they'll just get straight down to the task at hand. They want you to get to the point and not fluff it up.

Relationship-oriented individuals When you first meet with them, they'll try to build a relationship with you first, and then get down to the task at hand. They tend to enjoy the company of others and get pleasure from relationships, more than doing projects. They are more influenced by the opinions of others, more joiners than loners. They are very tuned-in to how they feel around others and how they make others feel around them.

Again, if you haven't got the handouts draw vertical line through the middle of your horizontal line - so you end up with a grid. At the top of the line put the word Task and at the bottom of the line place the word Relationship. Then number along the line from A at Task through to D down by Relationships

So where do you rate yourself - A B, C or D?

And these four quadrants make up the DISC model.

3,4 A B = D Dominant Style - Our competitive, fast-paced, go get those results people.

3,4 C, D = I Influencing Style - Our optimistic party animals. These are our love to be loved and stand out in the crowd people.

1,2, C D = S Steady Style - Our amiable, warm team players who like to build great relationships with everyone and like things to remain steady and consistent

1,2, A, B = C Compliant - Our analyzers, and thinkers - they aren't slow thinkers, they just love to be able to look at something from every angle to make sure they make informed, correct decisions. These are our "Let's get it right people"

Disc Quadrants

In today's session we don't have the time to go into great detail on how to become an expert at recognizing and flexing and adapting your style (that's a full day's training program) ... I'll be giving you a quick overview (think of it as the first couple of lessons with a driving instructor, enough to get you started, but not enough to call you an expert driver!)

You'll have enough to get going on practicing at being more adaptable in how you communicate. Take action on what I'm about to teach you and see if it doesn't change your relationships with others.

A caveat here, before I give you some quick descriptions of how to interact more effectively with the four styles. It is very important not to read just one signal and jump to conclusions. All of us are a combination of all four factors, but you will tend to use one, two or three of them more regularly.

Depending upon what is going on you will be able to call on any of the characteristics contained in each Style - it might just be that some are harder for you to call upon than others, whereas some are your 'food for survival' your preferred way of solving problems, interacting with others and the pace at which you work.

And, you need to feed those preferences each day. And, generally one of the four DISC factors will be your "Achilles Heel" the behavioral style that you find the most difficult, stressful and/or de-energizing for you to deal with in others.

As well DISC only looks at behavior, it doesn't consider values, experience, morals, IQ, EQ, personality etc. I'll be sharing other tools with you later that help you to do this.

Understanding The Four Styles

The Dominance Style

You know you are working with someone who has strong Dominant characteristics when you see them speaking quickly, using strong, direct eye contact, controlling the conversation, focused on the task at hand and making quick decisions.

To get the most from a conversation with someone who is high in Dominance you need to be clear, specific and to the point. Keep the pace up.

Stick to the business at hand, unless they initiate a social conversation - but don't try to keep it going too long.

Ask 'what' questions to get them involved and let them air their opinions ... they want to keep control of the conversation; keep your focus on results, the big picture and the bottom-line. Be strong and confident as you deal with them. And the thing you must never say to them is, "I think you should" that's a red rag!

The Influencing Style

You know you are working with someone who has strong Influencing characteristics when they are doing a lot of talking, are fairly casual in their approach, lots of expressive gestures and are in no hurry to get straight down to the task, so be prepared to socialize a bit first.

When you are dealing with a high Influencing style be prepared to keep the conversation on track, if they get themselves side-tracked, but do it in a friendly way. Be enthusiastic, keep the pace up and don't get into too many details in the conversation ... however, after the conversation provide details in writing, so that you can keep them on track to what needs to occur. Because they are likely to forget.

The Steadiness Style

You know you are working with someone who has strong Steadiness characteristics when they are coming across as warm, yet reserved. The pace will be a lot slower than that of the D and I and their tone a lot softer.

Start with some personal chitchat to break the ice.

They'll want more details from you and time to think through what you are discussing before they are willing to share their decision with you. They have the strongest poker face of all the styles so it can be challenging to get a read on what they are really thinking.

They don't like change so give them plenty of time and be calm and patient as they adjust. If you try to push a person high in Steadiness into a corner, they'll dig their heels in ... you just might not realize that they've done that until it is too late!

The Compliance Style

You know you are working with someone who has strong Compliance characteristics when they are coming across as cool and reserved. Again their pace will be more deliberate and they'll be precise in what they say. Limited eye contact and gestures.

Don't be too personal or informal and don't touch them (outside of a hand shake). Like the Dominant Style no personal chitchat unless they initiate it.

They'll want lots of detailed, accurate information. Like the high Steadiness style give them time to make a decision and provide them with data and facts. Be logical in presenting your data. Draw up an Action Plan with milestones and scheduled dates - one of the challenges with someone who is a high Compliance style is they can get trapped in paralysis by analysis.

Make This Work For You

To bring this alive and make it practical, here's what I suggest you do ... look in your diary at your upcoming meetings. Then make a note to yourself that during those meetings you will take notice of other people's styles (download the handouts for a quick cheat sheet on how to do this). Then in subsequent interactions with those individuals think about how you can flex your communication style to have a better outcome from the conversation and the relationship.

As you go out interacting with people over the next couple of weeks you'll be saying something to yourself like: Is he more open or closed? Is she more task focused or wanting to build a relationship? After a couple of weeks you'll have integrated it and it will be like driving a car - you'll intuitively be picking up the clues.

DISC only measures behavior ... and this is why I love this model so much ... behavior is changeable depending upon circumstances. Be clear we can be in each of the different modes - it just depends upon what is going on.

Meet Them Where They Are

For example, you may have someone who naturally likes to make decisions fast and focus on the bottom line ... so you've got used to not getting into detail with him or her when you meet. But, on a particular day for some reason, this person has slowed the pace down, wants more detail. The reason why doesn't really matter ... you are better off spending more time and energy meeting them where they are that day, providing more information than they'd normally want, then wondering, "What the heck has got in to him or her?"

It really is simple things: Should this conversation be slower, faster? Task, relationship? Detail or Big Picture?

Should This Conversation

Flexing is your ability to change your approach depending upon the situation and the person ... and valuing what it is they are bringing to the table.

If you are someone who is high on Dominance and likes making those rapid-paced decisions and you are working with someone who is high on Compliance, being willing to slow the pace down a little to enable the Compliance person to think through the decision could well make for a much better decision in the long-run. And you’ll be building a relationship, rather than demolishing it.

Flexing takes a bit of practice. You actually have to stop and deliberately think about choosing to act in a different manner. Because mostly as you interact with others you are on auto-pilot - just being you and communicating in the way that is most comfortable for you.

You're following that golden rule of treating others the way you want to be treated. Which is comfortable and easy for you ... but not necessarily the best approach for huge success and results. And as a business owner fully responsible for your business thriving isn’t this what you want?

When you fully integrate your ability to understand and recognize each of these four styles of behavior and then flex your style to meet them where they are, you'll really sky-rocket your success in influencing others. You'll ease your foot off that brake that is holding you back.

You can get projects done more quickly, you can get more resources allocated to your team, your career will move forward rapidly and you'll have far more flourishing and fulfilling relationships with the people around you.

You're going to love the next training I have for you.

If you are thinking about moving into another role the tips in this training will help you to do that more successfully, and even if you aren't planning a move anytime soon, the thinking and ideas in the training will help you thrive even more in your current role.

As well, you'll also discover the biggest way leaders steal from their organization and I'm pretty confident you are probably guilty of it, probably are frustrated by it, and are probably ready to get beyond this de-railer of careers.

I'd like to know a little more about you.

What does a successful leadership career, a successful life, look like to you?

How do you want to thrive personally and professionally?

What sort of dent are you ready to make in the universe?

What will it mean to the people you work with and your family as you grow into your potential?

Please leave a comment below this video, and of course if you like what you've discovered today and found it useful, please click the like button and pay it forward by sharing with the people you care about.

You know when I started out in my leadership career I bumbled around for quite a few years.

I knew there had to be something more to leadership than what I was being taught by the leaders around me. I knew there had to be more to life than drudging through every day. It's been my life's work to live a life that is flourishing and share that mindset with others. To help make this world a better place.

What about you?

Are you on that path?

Are you really ready to take your life to a new edge?

To lead the people around you, your work colleagues, your family, your loved ones in a whole new way, to a whole new level.

You and I are going to do great things in the upcoming training ... see you in a couple of days time ... and remember scroll down and leave a message for me.

Leave A Comment

Have your say about what you just read! Leave a comment in the box below.