Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Video Guide
One of the most important traits for leaders to develop is confidence in themselves and their own abilities. Building confidence comes with time and creating a pattern of success as well as learning from our mistakes. As we develop our confidence it is natural to be nervous in certain situations or with new people. One of the ways we can work to overcome our nerves in these situation is using a technique called Fake It 'Til You Make It. This is really nothing more than just trying to pump ourselves up a little before we go into a situation that makes us nervous and act as if we are confident, even when we are not.

Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Video Guide

One of the most important traits for leaders to develop is confidence in themselves and their own abilities. Building confidence comes with time and creating a pattern of success as well as learning from our mistakes. As we develop our confidence it is natural to be nervous in certain situations or with new people. One of the ways we can work to overcome our nerves in these situation is using a technique called “Fake It ‘Til You Make It”. This is really nothing more than just trying to pump ourselves up a little before we go into a situation that makes us nervous and act as if we are confident, even when we are not.

Benefits of Fake It ‘Til You Make It

It may seem as if the idea of Fake It Til You Make It is not genuine or authentic, but what we’re really trying to do with this technique is make our rational brains and physical bodies take on attitudes and postures that indicate confidence. By taking on these attitudes and postures, that will help our emotional state get more used to the idea of entering this new situation and reduce a little of that anxiety. Additionally, when the others around us see that we are acting confident, it will put them at more at ease with the situation and that will further help bring our emotional state to a place of more confidence.

In today’s video, Jason talks more about how using Fake It ‘Til You Make It can help make you feel a little more confident in new situations and how it fits into building long-term confidence. He also talks about situations where this technique is useful and some situations that you may not want to try to fake your way through.

Photo Credit: By Adam Jones Adam63 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

It's already May and that means that Memorial Day is coming up quickly here in the United States. In honor of all of those who gave so much, we're making courageous leadership our theme for this month at Evil Genius Leadership. As leaders we often need to make decisions or take actions that are unpopular have some risk associated with them. While there are times that it is prudent to wait to make a decision, sometimes the circumstances don't allow it and we need to exercise courageous leadership to make that decision. Courage is a trait that can be developed in us, like any other trait, and this month we have a challenge to help us build our courage to be there when we need it most.

Courageous Leadership – May Leadership Video Challenge

It’s already May and that means that Memorial Day is coming up quickly here in the United States. In honor of all of those who gave so much, we’re making courageous leadership our theme for this month at Evil Genius Leadership. As leaders we often need to make decisions or take actions that are unpopular have some risk associated with them. While there are times that it is prudent to wait to make a decision, sometimes the circumstances don’t allow it and we need to exercise courageous leadership to make that decision. Courage is a trait that can be developed in us, like any other trait, and this month we have a challenge to help us build our courage to be there when we need it most.

Courageous Leadership Video Challenge

This month for our challenge we’re asking everyone to think of something that is outside of your comfort zone and to go do it! It doesn’t need to be the scariest thing that you can think of, just start with something you wouldn’t ordinarily do and follow through on doing it. Taking small steps like these can help us expand our comfort zone as well as giving us more confidence to step out of it when we recognize the need to. Like many other traits, developing courageous leadership is like building a muscle and we need to exercise it regularly in order to strengthen it and maintain it before we need to use it in a critical situation. In the video, Jason gives some ideas for small things you can try to step out of your comfort zone and start building that muscle.

Tell us in the comments what you did to step out of your comfort zone and how it turned out for you!

Photo Credit: By James Varhegyi (https://www.dvidshub.net/image/1953926) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Building consensus is one of the most important skill a leader can have in their leadership toolbox. Leaders frequently need to advocate for their ideas and persuade others that their approach is the best solution for everyone involved. Building consensus provides a way to get others to buy-in to our ideas and to participate in the process of turning them into fully developed solutions that address the problem or situation.

Building Consensus – Video Guide

Building consensus is one of the most important skills a leader can have in their leadership toolbox. Leaders frequently need to advocate for their ideas and persuade others that their approach is the best solution for everyone involved. Building consensus provides a way to get others to buy-in to our ideas and to participate in the process of turning them into fully developed solutions that address the problem or situation. One of the most important ideas to understand about consensus is that it is more than just bringing about the majority of the group to our side. In a true consensus, all members of the group agree with and accept the idea or concept, not just most of the group. While it can be difficult to bring a whole group of people around to our way of thinking, there are some tools that we can use to help in building consensus among that group to gain support for our ideas.

Tools for Building Consensus

  • Find areas of agreement early
  • Separate interests from positions
  • Engage in Active Listening
  • Ask thorough, thoughtful, open-ended questions
  • Give others the opportunity to speak about impacts

Building consensus is definitely challenging, especially when multiple parties interests and positions come into play, but there are some advantages that come along with putting this effort in up front. Primarily, once consensus has been achieved among the group, it is likely that the members of the group will be invested in the solution arrived at and will advocate for it to others and strive to implement it fully. This can help in educating the rest of the work force or other organizations as to why any changes are important as well as gain their support because their interests were represented in the decision-making process. Building a consensus is almost always difficult, and not always possible, but definitely worth the effort when it can be achieved.

Photo Credit: By John Trumbull [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

No matter how skilled or talented we are, there's just no way we can accomplish the big goals we want to meet all on our own. Every great leader has worked with others to bring about the amazing things that they have achieved. Trying to do everything on our own can be frustrating, leads to slower progress and limited results and is honestly, a little bit lonely. One of the ways we bring others in to help us meet our objectives is through building partnerships and strategic relationships. There are lots of people out there in the world whose professional goals are either similar or complimentary to our own. Finding these people and working together in a mutually beneficial relationship is one of the best ways to achieve what we are setting out to do. One of the most difficult things to do when we're looking to build strategic relationships is to figure out who we should approach to be in this partnership with us. Fortunately, there are a few key questions that we can ask ourselves in order to make this easier.

Strategic Relationships – Video Guide

No matter how skilled or talented we are, there’s just no way we can accomplish the big goals we want to meet all on our own. Every great leader has worked with others to bring about the amazing things that they have achieved. Trying to do everything on our own can be frustrating, leads to slower progress and limited results and is honestly, a little bit lonely. One of the ways we bring others in to help us meet our objectives is through building partnerships and strategic relationships. There are lots of people out there in the world whose professional goals are either similar or complimentary to our own. Finding these people and working together in a mutually beneficial relationship is one of the best ways to achieve what we are setting out to do. One of the most difficult things to do when we’re looking to build strategic relationships is to figure out who we should approach to be in this partnership with us. Fortunately, there are a few key questions that we can ask ourselves in order to make this easier.

Questions to Ask When Building Strategic Relationships:

  • Who shares my goals and ambitions?
  • Who has a similar outlook on business and life?
  • Who has similar goals, but a different perspective than my own?
  • Who has experience or expertise needed to meet my goals, but that I don’t have?

Once we’ve identified who to start building a partnership or strategic relationship with, we need to keep in mind that the relationship can’t be all about us and our own goals. Partnerships need to be two-way street where we give at least as much as we get to the relationship so that all parties can achieve their goals. Only when both partners give what they have to offer to make the partnership work do we really maximize our results.

Photo Credit: By Vicki Nunn (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

No one likes to make mistakes, but we all do and we just have to accept that someday it's going to happen to us. Whatever our mistake is, it's nowhere near as important as how we react to it and what we learn from it. In this week's video, Jason talks about how to get our mindset right after making a mistake and the three steps we need to take before we can begin to learn from it. One of the most important aspects of the process of learning about our mistakes is to engage in self-reflection and take an objective look at the root causes of the mistake. Asking ourselves some key questions will help us adopt a rational process to overcoming mistakes. Here are a few examples of questions that might be valuable to figuring out the real cause of a mistake:

Overcoming Mistakes – Video Guide

No one likes to make mistakes, but we all do and we just have to accept that someday it’s going to happen to us. Whatever our mistake is, it’s nowhere near as important as how we react to it and what we learn from it. In this week’s video, Jason talks about how to get our mindset right after making a mistake and the three steps we need to take before we can begin to learn from it. One of the most important aspects of the process of learning about our mistakes is to engage in self-reflection and take an objective look at the root causes of the mistake. Asking ourselves some key questions will help us adopt a rational process to overcoming mistakes. Here are a few examples of questions that might be valuable to figuring out the real cause of a mistake:

Overcoming Mistakes Through Reflective Questions

  • Was there information out there that I didn’t have that could have helped?
  • Was there information that I had that I didn’t use to make my decision?
  • Was there someone I know with experience I could have consulted with before proceeding?
  • Were there others who had an opposing or different perspective that I could have considered?
  • Were there external factors that I didn’t consider or fully understand?
  • Did I have a thorough understanding of the flow of the activity and the people who needed to be involved?

The only way a mistake can truly be a wasted experience is if we don’t find a way to learn something from it. Adopting a healthy mindset towards mistakes and learning valuable lessons from every mistake can help us grow into stronger leaders and help those around us benefit from our experience too.

 

Photo Credit: By Ervín Pospíšil [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html), CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/) or CC BY-SA 2.5-2.0-1.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5-2.0-1.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

I'm really excited to be a guest on the #SocialPowWow Twitter Chat this Thursday at 11:30 AM Eastern Time. Ancita Satija hosts #SocialPowWow to discuss how the Social Web is rewriting the rules of business and connect with India based Startups, Marketers, PR & Digital professionals. Join us to talk about how social media can be an effective vehicle for leadership, connecting with communities, and how to leverage specific social media networks for effective leadership. Learn how leadership and social media are intertwined in the digital age and how you can incorporate excellent social media practices into your leadership style.

Leadership and Social Media on #SocialPowWow

Leadership and Social Media on #SocialPowWow

I’m really excited to be a guest on the #SocialPowWow Twitter Chat this Thursday at 11:30 AM Eastern Time. Ancita Satija hosts #SocialPowWow to discuss how the Social Web is rewriting the rules of business and connect with India based Startups, Marketers, PR & Digital professionals. Join us to talk about how social media can be an effective vehicle for leadership, connecting with communities, and how to leverage specific social media networks for effective leadership. Learn how leadership and social media are intertwined in the digital age and how you can incorporate excellent social media practices into your leadership style.

#SocialPowWow on twitter

 

 

Spring is a time for revitalization, rebirth and reinventing and the longer, warmer days give us an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been and where we want to go. We'll be adopting these themes in all of our content for the month April at Evil Genius Leadership. We'll be showing you ways to bounce back from mistakes, how to cultivate critical partnerships and how to build consensus on your team to give your leadership skills a shot in the arm and recharge your team. Before we dive into those ideas we want to invite you to join our April Leadership Challenge and do something to either give your career a kind or rebirth and revitalization or help re-energize your team to meet new challenges

Rebirth and Revitalization – April Leadership Challenge Video

Spring is a time for revitalization, rebirth and reinventing,  and the longer, warmer days give us an opportunity to reflect on where we’ve been and where we want to go. We’ll be adopting these themes in all of our content for the month April at Evil Genius Leadership. We’ll be showing you ways to bounce back from mistakes, how to cultivate critical partnerships and how to build consensus on your team to give your leadership skills a shot in the arm and recharge your team. Before we dive into those ideas we want to invite you to join our April Leadership Challenge and do something to either give your career a kind or rebirth and revitalization or help re-energize your team to meet new challenges

Rebirth and Revitalization – April Leadership Challenge

For April we’re asking everyone to think about something you’d like to revitalize in your life or some way you’d like to reinvent yourself or make some personal growth happen.  Maybe your team used to have a social activity on a regular basis that was really beneficial but fell by the wayside. Bringing that back could be a great way to revitalize the connections and relationships on your team. Or maybe you’ve been wanting to learn more about a particular topic important to your team and really become an expert in it. Set a goal to reinvent yourself as an expert in an area of knowledge that no one else on the team has. These don’t need to be grandiose or complete transformations, just some conscious little changes to bring you in a new direction.

We’ve got lots more coming up in April about revitalization, reinvention and growth, both our own and others, so check back to get more ideas!

Photo Credit: By Fancibaer (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons

 

 

developing a culture of initiative on your team where your team members solve problems and address situations before they come to you us a great way to keep these monkeys off of your back. Every problem that a member of your team can solve without having to come to you for guidance is one less monkey for you to handle.

Initiative & Keeping Monkeys off Your Back – Video Guide

One of the most widely read Harvard Business Review Articles ever written is from back in 1999 and talks about how leaders often assume problems that members of their team should be taking care of. If you’d like to read it, you can find it here. The article has a lot of great rules to implement for what to do as a leader if someone tries to let one of these monkeys jump off of their back and on to yours, but developing a culture of initiative on your team where your team members solve problems and address situations before they come to you us a great way to keep these monkeys off of your back. Every problem that a member of your team can solve without having to come to you for guidance is one less monkey for you to handle.

Ways to Develop Initiative

  • First, don’t just assign your team members tasks or duties, give them problems to solve or areas of responsibility
  • Give each team member appropriate authority to handle their assigned problems or responsibilities.
  • Encourage creative and innovative solutions and allow your team to pursue these solutions within the authority you have given them
  • And it’s really important to allow your team to make mistakes and learn from them. People can learn more from a few false starts than from immediate success. It also can help refine their ideas into the best possible solution by seeing what doesn’t work

The key to following all of these tips is to understand the degree of trust that you have in your team members and the amount of trust they have placed in you. in the video, Jason discusses both of these kinds of trust in detail and how you should take the amount of trust between you and your team in order to apply the tips above.

 

Photo Credit: By Patricedward (Personal Photo) [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Many of us spend a lot of our time and effort taking care of the other people on our teams. We make sure they have the tools and resources to do their jobs. a safe and secure work environment, and we often go to great lengths to ensure they get enough time away from work to rest and recharge as well as spend time with the people they care about. Because we are often so focused on making sure our team members we sometimes forget that taking care of ourselves is critical as well. Adopting a healthy lifestyle and making time to get away from the work environment is critical to maintaining our creativity and decision making processes and taking care of ourselves helps us manage stress and keep a positive outlook.

Taking Care of Ourselves – Video Guide

Many of us spend a lot of our time and effort taking care of the other people on our teams. We make sure they have the tools and resources to do their jobs. a safe and secure work environment, and we often go to great lengths to ensure they get enough time away from work to rest and recharge as well as spend time with the people they care about. Because we are often so focused on making sure our team members we sometimes forget that taking care of ourselves is critical as well. Adopting a healthy lifestyle and making time to get away from the work environment is critical to maintaining our creativity and decision making processes and taking care of ourselves helps us manage stress and keep a positive outlook.

Pillars for Taking Care of Ourselves

There are several aspects to keep in mind as we seek to maintain a balanced lifestyle that will keep us at peak performance:

  • Fitness and Exercise
  • Healthy Eating
  • Taking Time Away from Work
  • Finding Time to Recharge Daily

Ignoring one or more of these areas can push us out of balance. Sometimes our responsibilities as leaders might force us to place less priority on one of these areas, but it’s important that we get ourselves back in balance as soon as possible. In the video, Jason discusses all four pillars and gives effective tips on how to make each pillar stronger in our professional lives. He also addresses some of the challenges associated with each pillar and ways we can overcome them. Our teams are only as good as their weakest link and if we aren’t taking care of ourselves we might find that we are that weak link. We can avoid degrading our own performance and that of our team by making conscious decisions to take care of ourselves and keep our lives in balance.

Photo credit: By Gamweb (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons

Just like our homes can get cluttered as the year goes on, our teams can get cluttered with misplaced priorities, ineffective procedures and tasks that no longer serve a valuable purpose. While we should always be on the lookout for waste and activities that are no longer serving our purpose or helping us achieve our mission, planning a spring cleaning activity can help us get focused on making improvements without getting caught up in our normal day-to-day activities.

Spring Cleaning – Video Guide

Just like our homes can get cluttered as the year goes on, our teams can get cluttered with misplaced priorities, ineffective procedures and tasks that no longer serve a valuable purpose. While we should always be on the lookout for waste and activities that are no longer serving our purpose or helping us achieve our mission, planning a spring cleaning activity can help us get focused on making improvements without getting caught up in our normal day-to-day activities.

Depending on how long it has been since you last did a thorough assessment of the activities that your team does on a daily basis, you may find out that there are so many things to review that it makes sense to tackle the most important ones first and come back at a later time to address the others. If you’re wondering where to get started on reviewing a task, procedure or activity, here are a few questions you can ask yourself and your team to determine how to proceed:

Spring Cleaning Questions

  • Does anyone use the results of this task?
  • Does this activity take a large proportion of work time, but is used infrequently?
  • Does the information produced by this process give us insight about our mission or our team, or is it outdated?
  • Is there someone on another team or elsewhere in the organization that uses the outputs?

One of the most challenging parts of a spring cleaning activity is to determine what course of action to follow after we’ve done our assessment. In the video Jason talks about how to determine which tasks to keep, which ones to get rid of and some ways to approach improving on a process that you need to keep, but is inefficient or wasteful.

Photo Credit: By Papypierre1 (Own work) [GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html) or CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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