Monday, October 18, 2010

Influence Is Like Flowers and Candy

Without question, leadership and influence go hand in hand with another. The most effective leaders are those that posses the ability to lead those around them from one place to the next.

There are a variety of influence and persuasion principles at our disposal to help us with this but it's important that we properly read the situation and recognize which tool is most appropriate.

Here are the six main ones we can refer to:

Liking - People respond much more readily to people that they like, and even to the friends of people that they like. They feel comfortable if they see similarity or like the things that you’re associated with.

Scarcity - People get so much more interested in something if they feel that it’s about to run out.

Consistency & Commitment - People respond to others who are consistent in their messages. If you are constantly giving the same messages to people and acting in a consistent way, they will respond positively.

Social Proof - If people see others doing something, they assume that it must be okay to do it and therefore, they will be happier about doing it themselves.

Authority - People invariably act more positively if they have respect for the authority of the person who is giving them information.

Reciprocity - Reciprocation is about how, if you do something for somebody, they will feel obliged to do something for you, or they will at least feel better about doing something for you.

Flowers & Candy

“An earnest and sincere lover buys flowers and candy for the object of his affections. So does the cad who succeeds to take advantage of another’s heart. But when the cad succeeds, we don’t blame the flowers and candy. We rightly question his character.”

"The Art of Woo"

The principles of persuasion are as neutral as flowers and candy because they and can be used to influence people either positively or negatively. The tools themselves are neither good or bad, it's how they are put into practice.

Brian Ahearn joins HCL Radio to chat about the topic of influence and persuasion and explore these principles a bit further.

Brian has the distinction of being one of a handful of people trained by persuasion and influence expert, Dr. Robert Cialdini.

I asked Brian to comment on the connection between influence and leadership.

See you on the court!

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Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Name on The Front of The Jersey

The most effective groups are the ones where the members are focused on the goals of the team. They put their personal feelings, agendas and issues on the side and play for the name on the front of the jersey as opposed to the one on the back.

That's not to say that you have to forsake who you are for the good of the team. If you look at the championship Chicago Bulls teams in the 90's, they still needed Michael Jordan to be Michael Jordan.

Essentially, a team is made up of a variety of pieces and the integrity of the group is maintained as long as each member does their part.

The bottom line is every player on the team has to be on the same page for the group to achieve success or have a legitimate shot at winning.

In his book, "Pulling Together", John Murphy identifies 10 rules for high performing teams and joins me on the next episode of HCL Radio to discuss them.

John describes high performing team as teams that continue to "rise up and perform at peak levels"

To hear more from John, be sure to check out "The Name on The Front of The Jersey" on HCL Radio.

To stay regularly up to date with new episodes, click on the follow button on slightly above the show description!

See you on the court!

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Sunday, September 19, 2010

It`s Not What You Don`t Have

There`s very few people that would have a better understanding of this concept than former big league baseball pitcher, Jim Abbott.

As a result of a birth defect, Jim was born with only one hand but that didn`t deter him from following his dream of being a professional pitcher.

Here are a few of his accomplishments:
  • threw a 4-0 no-hitter for the New York Yankees versus Cleveland (September 4, 1993).

Instead of choosing to focus on what he didn`t have, Jim turned his attention towards the things he did have and refused to be defined by his missing right hand.

As a motivational speaker, Jim joins the next episode of HCL Radio to talk to about his playing career, how he personally overcame obstacles and what kinds of things motivated him to fulfill his dream of becoming a professional baseball player.

Listen as Jim talks about the importance of being accountable to ourselves clicking here.

Click here to read Jim`s full biography.

For more great insights be sure to check out the program or to stay regularly up to date with new episodes, click on the follow button on slightly above the show description!

See you on the court!

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Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Platinum Differences

I had the privilege of welcoming Scott Zimmerman to HCL Radio to discuss a concept called, "The Platinum Rule" which was originally developed by his co-author and business partner, Dr. Tony Alessandro.

While many are familiar with the Golden Rule which says we must do onto others as they would do onto you, The Platinum Rule adds a slight twist.

The difference being that we're not treating people how we want to be treated but rather how they rather be treated.

It acknowledges and recognizes the fact that we're all different and don't necessarily all respond to a one size fits all approach.

This change in mindset requires a solid of understanding of the four different personality modes that exist and leaders need to be able to identify which mode a person is operating in and when they move from one mode to the next.

Director Socializer Thinker Relater

As Scott points out, leaders can make the biggest impact if they adapt to the whomever they're dealing with by adjusting the speed and temperature.

Click here to listen.

Click here to learn more about the Platinum Rule or to get your own personal assessment.

For more great insights be sure to check out the program or to stay regularly up to date with new episodes, click on the follow button on slightly above the show description!

See you on the court!

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Friday, September 10, 2010

The 8 Causes of Persistence

Coach Bob Starkey of the LSU Lady Tigers wrote a great piece on his blog Hoop Thoughts about the importance of being persistent and identified 8 causes of it:

1. Definiteness of purpose
Knowing what one wants is the first and, perhaps, the most important step toward the development of persistence. A strong motive forces one to surmount many difficulties.

2. Desire
It is comparatively easy to acquire and to maintain persistence in pursuing the object of intense desire.

3. Self-reliance
Belief in one’s ability to carry out a plan encourages one to follow the plan through with persistence.

4. Definiteness of plan
Organized plans, even though they may be weak and entirely impractical, encourage persistence.
5. Accurate knowledge
Knowing that one’s plans are sound, based upon experience or observation, encourages persistence; “guessing” instead of “knowing” destroys persistence.

6. Cooperation
Sympathy, understanding, and harmonious cooperation with others tend to develop persistence.

7. Will-power
The habit of concentrating one’s thoughts upon the building of plans for the attainment of a definite purpose leads to persistence.

8. Habit
Persistence is the direct result of habit. The mind absorbs and becomes a part of the daily experiences upon which it feeds. Fear, the worst of all enemies, can be effectively cured by forced repetition of acts of courage. Everyone who has seen active service in war knows this.

See you on the court!

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Friday, September 3, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #13

It's All In The Follow Through

Being an effective shooter is a combination of good form, proper balance and a refined shooting technique. A picture perfect jump shot is like poetry in motion however, it means nothing if you don't follow through.

Generally, following through is a good thing because what we're essentially doing is putting actions to our words. So instead of being one of those people who say, "Yeah, I thought of that great idea, you can say I did it and implemented this great idea.

That's what following through is all about.

See you on the court!

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Thursday, September 2, 2010

If I Had A Choice...

If I had a choice, I'd rather be communicated with as opposed to being talked to, with a heavy emphasis on the word "with".

Coach Kevin Sutton of Montverde Academy, a college preparatory school in Montverde Florida states in a recent blog post, "Talking vs Communicating", that it's a two way street.

By communicating with me, I'm allowed to be a part of the process as opposed to being told what to do.

The most successful coaches and leaders understand its importance and regularly incorporate effective communication strategies into their normal manner of operation.

In the case of Coach Sutton, he does a “CIRCLE OF COMMUNICATION” at the end of each practice.

This is where all of his players gather in circle and a topic is selected for them to communicate with each other about.

For example, he might have them pick a player to their right and tell them know what they did well in practice that day. The key is that they must say the teammates name.

According to Coach Sutton, this exercise has helped tremendously in the development of the players ability to:
  1. Communicate & actively listen
  2. To be secure vs. insecure in giving and receiving a compliment.
  3. Help grow a teammates self-esteem.
Maintaining effective communication is the starting point for team success and in order to achieve this:

1. You must have a common language

2. A clear understanding of what is being communicated

3. Acknowledge that you understand what has been communicated to you. (Information given, received and understood).

So after all that.

What's your choice?

See you on the court!

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Here's Why Everything Matters

It's really easy to take the small and seemingly insignificant things for granted and assume that they don't matter or won't have an impact on the bottom line.

This ultimately, isn't the case and often times, the smallest things can be the difference between winning and losing.

Author and speaker, Gary Ryan Blair joins me on the next episode of HCL Radio to discuss his Everything Counts philosophy which is also the name of his book and blog.
Gary teaches his audiences about the importance of paying attention to the fine details because they often times are the difference between success and failure or the difference between first place and second.

Click here to listen to Gary further explain the concept.

For more great insights be sure to check out the program or to stay regularly up to date with new episodes, click on the follow button on slightly above the show description!

See you on the court!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Productivity Lessons from a Web Designer

So I'm a pretty active guy when it comes to Twitter and the more I use it, the more I find it becomes my go to source for news, updates and general time wasting.

I happen to be following a web & graphic designer from Minneapolis, MN by the name of Mike Lane.

Now on the surface, you'd think that he and I don't have a whole lot in common and I wouldn't blame you for thinking that way.

Afterall, I'm a self professed hoops junkie that uses basketball to help people develop both personally and professionally and he talks about performance optimization, HTML and web design stuff.

What could we possible have in common??

Well, after reading his tweet that provided 10 tips on being more productive, I was quickly reminded of a Hard Court Leadership lesson.

No matter the situation, circumstance or players involved, there are a ton of valuable lessons we can learn to make us better leaders. It's up to us to use our court vision to spot them.

Here are the 10 tips that Mike shared via Clare Evans, author of Time Management for Dummies.

Thanks Mike!

1. Plan

If you want to make the biggest difference to your productivity, plan your time. You’ll ensure you’re focusing on the right things and using your time more effectively.

2. Systems and Priorities

When you’ve got to much to do, don’t expect to do it all. Make the best use of your time by focusing on what’s important.

3. Delegate

The busier you are the more you need to delegate. Spend your time on important tasks that no one else can do rather than day-to-day tasks.

4. Distractions and interruptions

We’d get more done if we didn’t keep getting distracted or interrupted. Whether it’s emails, phone calls or people stopping by our office without an appointment, interruptions are part of every working day.

5. Learn to say No!

Busy people often say yes to everything. Get back control of your time by saying ‘No’.
6. Manage your emails

Email can be one of the biggest distractions and drains on our time. Particularly if you find yourself constantly checking your inbox. Unless they’re a critical part of your work, they rarely need to be responded to immediately.

7. Setting Expectations

If you spend time working with other people, it’s important to set expectations. Let them know what it is you want and when. Don’t let other people’s actions create added effort and pressure for you.

8. Procrastination

Many people have a tendency to put things off. If the task is worth doing, don’t make it worse by leaving it. Do it sooner rather than late. Here are a few ways to deal with it:

9. Taking Breaks

Even if you’re busy, you need to take regular breaks. How often do you work through your lunch break or don’t take a break until it’s time to finish for the day?

10. Keep the balance

Working hard is all very well, but if you focus all your time and effort on work, other areas are likely to suffer.

See you on the court!

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Thursday, August 26, 2010

A Society of One

We all know how important it is for individuals to take responsibility for their actions, it's a core element of leadership and something everyone should be mindful of on a regular basis.

Ultimately, we're accountable to ourselves so it's important that we're 100% comfortable for the choices we make because at the end of the day, we'll have to live with ourselves and the pathways we selected.

We're the ones who'll have to evaluate whether or not the choices made are worthwhile and beneficial to us and not others. Think of yourself as our own little society where you are entirely accountable for all the decisions, it's a place where you get to make up all the rules.

It doesn't matter what other societies are doing or what rules they govern themselves with. All that matters are the decisions you make for yourself and whether or not you're comfortable with them.

Sunjay Nath joins me on the next edition of HCL Radio to explore this topic and many more. As an internationally recognized professional speaker and author, Sunjay has spread positive messages around self-esteem, leadership and goal setting to young people all over.

Sunjay chatted with me about the importance of perception.

Click here to listen to what Sunjay had to say.

For more great insights be sure to check out the program or to stay regularly up to date with new episodes, click on the follow button on slightly above the show description!

See you on the court!

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Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #12

Finding Your Sweet Spot

Shooters understand the importance of getting into a good rhythm and what it means to their shot. Finding that natural flow increases the chances of a better performance and increases the likelihood of success.

This is why it's critical that we find our Sweet Spot.

See you on the court!

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Pulling Together

If we look deep enough, we can find life lessons just about everywhere.

For example, my friend John Murphy used the illustration of geese to teach some incredible lessons about how teams can become high performers through the power of pulling together.

Check it out this 3 minute video!

Pulling Together

See you on the court!

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Thursday, August 19, 2010

Think Inside The Box

If you're looking to expand your brand and stand out from everyone else, here's a key question worth putting some thought into:

What do you do better in the world than anyone else?

Do you have good organizing skills? Are you the kind of individual or organization that people want to be affiliated with? Do you consistently meet your key deliverables?

Identify a list of your top three things that you think matter most to your customers or the people around you and challenge yourself to think of how you can become 20% better.

The increase will be marginal but it'll be enough to separate you from the rest of the pack, you'll differentiate yourself so much that you'll create your own unique category.

On the next episode of HCL Radio, nationally renowned speaker, author and business expert, Joe Calloway spends some time talking about this innovative concept.

Sports and life is a game of inches and your ability to stand out and be slightly different will go a long way towards building loyalty and longevity.

During my conversation with Joe, we also chatted about the importance of innovation as it relates to leadership.

Click here to listen to what Joe had to say about innovation.

Be sure to check out the program as you'll be sure to walk away from this enlightening conversation with some great strategies you can use to make you a stand out leader.

See you on the court!

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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #11

Make A Play

John Wooden once said, "The greatest failure of all is failure to act when action is needed."

There`s a variety of reasons why we don`t take action when we really should. For many, it comes down to procrastination, others believe that it`s not their role and then there are those who quite simply don`t have the confidence to do what needs to be done.

Regardless of our reason for not moving forward, its important that we recognize that the ability to take action and make a play is well within our grasp and not exclusive to the star player on the team.

We just need to have courage to believe that we`ll succeed, the determination not to give up and the effort to push us forward.

Take action and Make A Play

See you on the court!

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Thursday, August 5, 2010

Hard Court Lesson #10

For The Love of The Game

During the mid 90's, a San Francisco based advertising firm devised the very popular "I Love This Game" slogan for the NBA.

This four word campaign slogan proved to be very powerful as it drew a connection between the product (in this case NBA basketball) and people's passion for the game.

Using passion as a way of connecting with others can be very effective and is something that leaders can capitalize on to get the most out of those around them.

When we're passionate about what we're doing, we become better leaders because we tend to be more creative, productive and energetic.

For more on the power of passion, check out For The Love of The Game!

See you on the court!

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