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Team Collaboration

Practical Practice Management A Division of Top Practices

Working with a team of people can be a challenge, especially if you have a hard time listening to your teammates and considering their problems and solutions if they differ from your opinion.

We do not have a lot of scheduled team meetings, at our office because we have a morning huddle each day. At our huddles we can discuss things that came up the day before or possible issues that might arise in our schedule, so we are all on the same page.

When we do have meetings we usually have a topic or question that each one of us it to share their idea or solution to. For example, yesterday we had a meeting, and the topic was for each of us to come up with one thing that we felt would make our job or the office flow to be better and why. We also had to…

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The Stories Our Customers Will Tell

Practical Practice Management A Division of Top Practices

Whether you work in a medical office, grocery store, or restaurant, if the business’ main purpose is to provide a service or product to people then you have customers.  Customers are the lifeline of any business as without them the business does not exist.

It is the customer service they receive that can make the difference in whether people come back to your place of business or another who offers the same service. Having a choice is great especially if the service is bad, as in my Kinko’s story.

A several years ago, I needed to have thousands of copies made for a conference I was overseeing (this was before the digital handout age). There was a Kinko’s printing store was just down the street from my office, so it was very convenient for me to use their services, which I had be doing for years.

I went to Kinko’s…

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Ethical Awareness is a Moving Target

Leading in Context

How well is your organization navigating the ethical pitfalls of the working world? If you’re finding it to be a major challenge right now, you’re not alone.

Why is it so hard to navigate ethical minefields now?

There is currently a “toxic soup” of factors at play, including:

  • Life and death pandemic safety issues, requiring full cooperation and adherence to safety protocols
  • Continuing pandemic restrictions, isolation, and restriction burnout
  • Racial tension and a renewed focus on real (not just “marketing level”) inclusion
  • Political tension, polarity, disagreement, and blame
  • Worker fears about COVID-19 combined with large-scale vaccine distribution challenges
  • Rampant misinformation-spreading makes it difficult to identify the truth, and even harder to talk about it
  • Financial challenges, with some workers and businesses living on the edge day to day
  • Inability to get on top of putting out fires to see the big picture, combined with a critical need to adapt

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600th Blog Post: 10 Leadership Lessons Learned

Leading in Context

By Linda Fisher Thornton

I’ve been blogging for 12 years, after making a very rocky start on March 5, 2009. If I had let my early failures determine my future, I would never have made it to this point celebrating 600 posts on the Leading in Context Blog. Today I’m sharing 10 Leadership Lessons I’ve learned since starting this blog in the hopes that they will inspire you to press forward in your important work.

To sum up the experience so far, it’s been a wild, up-and-down ride. I’ve hesitated, made excuses, written anyway, made mistakes, felt discouraged, gotten back up, and tried again. But the most important thing that has happened over more than a decade is that I think I’ve begun to make a difference.

10 Leadership Lessons Learned

Lesson 1: Have the Courage to Question (150th Post)

Don’t be satisfied with “less than great” answers to…

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Senior Leaders: Set Clear Expectations For Values

Leading in Context

Senior leaders set the tone for an organization’s ethics, but the responsibility for values leadership includes much more than that. Today, I’ll look at the senior leader’s responsibility for sharing clear expectations, and explore other important roles that go well beyond just setting the tone for expected behavior.

Setting Clear Values Expectations

What top leaders do typically becomes the accepted norm for behavior in organizations. So senior leaders need to do much more than keep themselves on the right side of ethics. They also need to ensure that values consistently drive the engine of the organization.

“Few companies set clear expectations for senior executives on ethics and compliance,” stated the LRN report. “Unless senior leaders regularly insist that business decisions incorporate company values, the correct tone at the top will never be set.”

Ben Dipietro, LRN

Championing the Use of Ethical Values

In a previous post, Critical Roles of the…

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Unethical Leadership: Selective Respect

Leading in Context

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By Linda Fisher Thornton

We’ve seen selective respect too often. Beyond harming the people who are disrespected, it also destroys trust, and leads to chaotic environments and fear-based cultures. Even though we’ve all seen selective respect in action, we may not have had the vocabulary to describe why it’s wrong (beyond calling it mean or inappropriate). This week I’m digging in to those details. 

I define “selective respect” as doling out respect only under certain circumstances. It is not an ethical leadership behavior since it applies the ethical value of respect conditionally and not universally. 

Examples of Selective Respect in Action:

  • Teachers picking on certain students while encouraging others.
  • “Cool” kids teasing less popular kids while being chummy with their friends.
  • Employees repeating ethnic jokes or otherwise demeaning certain groups of people.
  • Public leaders treating people in their groups (political, racial, religious, gender, etc.) kindly while alienating and attacking others. 

The times when respect is applied may…

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Unethical Leadership: Beliefs of Convenience

Leading in Context

Sometimes leaders believe things that aren’t true because they haven’t taken time to investigate the truth. In other cases, they may have trusted someone who has misled them. But there’s an even more problematic reason some leaders may ignore the truth – claiming to believe the falsehood may benefit them in a tangible way.

“There is no such thing as ‘alternative information.’ However, when important information is withheld or if the information is false, it can lead to alternative interpretations. And that’s where you can get into big trouble.”

Jesse Lyn Stoner on Leadership, Give Me the Facts, Just the Facts, Seapoint Center For Collaborative Leadership

Watch for leaders sharing a falsehood that is a “belief of convenience,” which is a type of unethical leadership. It is unethical for multiple reasons. It is intentionally misleading instead of transparent, is based on an ulterior motive, and has the potential to…

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Talent Development 22 Future Readiness

Section 3.8 in the CPTD Certification program for ATD is Future Readiness. Section A reads, “Knowledge of techniques to promote, support, and/or generate innovation and creativity, for example design thinking, brainstorming, and ideation.”

Creativity is essential for forward movement in any organization. Unfortunately, the tools to have high creativity are often not used well, so the end result is muted rather than brilliant.

One of the more misunderstood techniques to bring about creativity is brainstorming.

Do brainstorming right

The technique of “brainstorming” was developed by Alex Osborn in the year 1967. His book “Applied Imagination” laid out a specific set of rules for brainstorming sessions.

Rule 1 – go for a high number of ideas – He suggested that quantity was more important than quality when creating fresh ideas.

Rule 2 – suspend all judgment while coming up with the ideas. This is the rule that most groups find difficult…

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The Ghost Of Christmas Past, A Management Lesson

Practical Practice Management A Division of Top Practices

For the past two weeks I have been teaching in our Virtual Practice Management membership group lessons we can learn from the story “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens, that can make us better managers or business owners.

This week we took a look at the chapter which Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the “Ghost of Christmas Past”, and a spectacular lesson to be learned was in one of the encounters during this ghosts visit. If you remember this ghost took him to his school when he was a child and was left there alone, apart from his little sister Fan, it was a painful experience for Scrooge to relive.

Then the ghost took him to another time when he was a young man to the place where he did his apprentice work. His employer was Mr. Fezziwig. The scene was the Christmas Eve work party and Mr. Fezziwig was…

View original post 312 more words

The Ghost Of Christmas Past, A Management Lesson

Practical Practice Management A Division of Top Practices

For the past two weeks I have been teaching in our Virtual Practice Management membership group lessons we can learn from the story “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens, that can make us better managers or business owners.

This week we took a look at the chapter which Ebenezer Scrooge is visited by the “Ghost of Christmas Past”, and a spectacular lesson to be learned was in one of the encounters during this ghosts visit. If you remember this ghost took him to his school when he was a child and was left there alone, apart from his little sister Fan, it was a painful experience for Scrooge to relive.

Then the ghost took him to another time when he was a young man to the place where he did his apprentice work. His employer was Mr. Fezziwig. The scene was the Christmas Eve work party and Mr. Fezziwig was…

View original post 312 more words

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