Posts Tagged ‘leadership training’

Bob Mills Furniture High Impact leaders in Oklahoma City, Ok

Bob Mills Furniture of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma gets the corporate staff of 28 together to do the High Impact Leaders seminar for two half day sessions. Bob Mills started his furniture business in 1971 in an old IGA grocery store building at 2625 S.W. 29th. The location remained there for 15 years. After years of concentrated effort, the business grew and, in the late 1980s, Mills moved the business to its present location, an 110,000 square foot facility at 3600 W. Reno in Oklahoma City. Jill Hudson, HR Director for Bob Mills Furniture and Bob Mills decided that with the rapid growth of the company and the corporate entity only being about two years old they wanted to bring together the team to get them on the same page. The High Impact Leaders seminar is a powerful leadership training seminar that focuses on developing soft-skills that help participants become stronger, more confident leaders and managers. Skills focused on in this program include public speaking, listening and communicating, people skills and how to motivate people, memory, problem-solving, meeting skills, and the ability to develop more leaders within the organization. The 28 Leadership Principals used by The Leaders Institute are a vital tool in changing the habits of people to help build trust and rapport, resolve conflict, gain buy in and building the next generation of leaders in any organization. Many comments from the group about how easy this will be to apply in their day to day operations with the desk reference at their reach. “The Leadership Principles help a lot on outlook, attitude and ability to look at things in a different light/ perspective”. The breakout sessions are helpful in getting the group to realize one another’s strengths and communicating effectively even when they work in different departments. The five step problem solving process is a fast easy way to generate possible ideas as well as create buy-in from your team concerning implementation of the solution. “The problem solving time was a great exercise to use in our daily/weekly meetings. Most of us walked away with a few things to work on at the office”

USAA Build-A-Bike in San Antonio, Texas

On September 27th 2012 USAA P&C Underwriting Department held a 3 hour event at their offices in San Antonio. USAA’s P&C Insurance Companies consistently earn the highest ratings from independent ratings agencies, consumer groups and research organizations for their financial strength and exceptional level of customer service. The event started with a 1 hour session in the 28 Leadership Principles. The break out session about the three levels of listening, Selective listeners, responsvie listeners and focused listeners, was a huge hit. Karen Meloni and her team were helpful making this event a success; they were the judges and took those roles seriously. Tracy, one of the judges was laughing so hard she had tears in her eyes.

The Build-A-Bike event teaches teamwork skills through a series of challenges which the teams are to complete. The tasks encourage the teams to think outside the box to come up with solutions. While they are learning to work efficiently as a team the USAA employees were also having fun. The overall lesson is that everyone works together to reach the same goal. In addition, it is not possible to start building your bike until everyone has their parts. This group was a little competitive so they asked for an additional bike and the first team to complete the first bike got to put another one together. They were very proud when they realized they put 2 bikes together in the same time and even before the other teams completed one bike. USAA chose the charity they wanted to donate the bikes to, Warrior and Family support in San Antonio. Judith Markelz was the representative that spoke at the end of the event with Michael Merwarth Sr. VP of P&C Underwriting.

Classroom Training does not equal Boring Training

“Classroom Training” does not equal “Boring Training”!

Classroom TrainingIt is an unfortunate truth that there are a lot of  “Leadership Training” or “Team Building” workshops or seminars out there that are… well… boring. It has become common to hear groans of distress and expressions of angst from people who have had, shall we say, “less-than-stellar” experience in these sessions.  However, that doesn’t have to be the case. Leadership training and team building events can be a very powerful way to add energy and enthusiasm to your team while passing along time-tested skill sets that in high demand in the business world.

However, it is important to understand the semantics of the industry so that you end up with an exceptional activity or workshop versus a boring one. The more focused you are on the results that you are looking for, the more likely you will be to pick the perfect solution for your team.

Consider the following criteria when evaluating your next training workshop.

  1. Look and listen for key words such as ‘interactive’ or ‘experiential’ in the description of the training session you are considering. And ask for an example of what is meant by using those terms. Usually, these terms mean that the class participants will actually participate in the session somehow. This is absolutely essential because we don’t learn stuff just by listening to it. We learn by interacting with the material. In short, we learn by doing. The more active the workshop, the more enjoyable it will be for the participants.  The more passive the workshop, the more droopy eyes you will see from the participants.
  2. If the person trying to interest you in the training is not asking a lot of questions about you, your company and your expectations, shop somewhere else. This is a sure sign that they have no intention of trying to meet or exceed those expectations, and could risk wasting your time and your money by delivering a training session that is not appropriate for your team’s needs.  The facilitator doesn’t necessarily have to customize, or even tailor, the material to the group, but with a few simple questions up front, the facilitator should be able to match content with the needs of the group.
  3. Understand that not all training is created equally. The more you know about what you want to get out of the training experience, the better able a training consultant will be in a position to help you find the right match for your needs. Sometimes a team in conflict really shouldn’t spend their time and money on a training session that is designed to really just let a team play together. Sometimes that team in conflict needs something a little more in depth. However, that doesn’t mean the session won’t be fun for the participants – it just means that the laughs will come from different experiences.
  4. Do your legwork ahead of time with your team. Once you’ve chosen a training workshop, talk to your colleagues about it before they get there. Ask your training consultant or instructor to give you suggestions about how to do this. If there are negative feelings and/or experiences from the past, consider letting people air their concerns so that you and/or the trainer can dispel them prior to the workshop day. There’s nothing worse for a training consultant than to walk into a classroom prepared to facilitate a great session only to be met by enormous resistance before they’ve even had a chance to speak!

Regardless of your experiences with classroom training thus far, studies show in increasing numbers how incredibly valuable it is to the entire workforce to invest in some type of leadership development training. Whether you are looking to improve your communication skills, polish your presentation skills, or develop overall better leadership capacity, there is a training out there for you.

Just keep the concepts above in mind when you choose a workshop or facilitator, and your team will be enthused by your activity and love the experience.

Keeping the Peace at Work-Conflict Resolution from a Boss Perspective

Steele Steadiman is a boss… (not a leader or a manager) and is in an eternal conflict with human resources. If you are looking for leadership training or to be a good coach with your direct reports, it’s a good idea to just do the opposite of what he suggests. However, if you are looking for a very entertaining keynote speaker, Steele will get your group fired up.

A survey by Accountemps indicates Managers spend an average of 18 percent of their time intervening in employee disputes. That is more than seven hours a week or nine weeks per year.   Past Accountemps studies from as far back as 1991 show very similar results.

These survey results show what it is important to be a Strong Boss.  Employees’ personal problems are messy and like a tidal wave of emotion can eat up a lot of time.  The touchy, feely folks at Accountemps offer five tips for minimizing personality conflicts.  I have added my own suggestions.

1.     Know when to step in. You don’t want to interject every time a minor issue arises, but you can’t afford to turn a blind eye to problems that jeopardize the group’s output… Steele says, Punish all parties involved in the disruption.  This will keep employees from bothering you with their petty problems.”

2.     Don’t let one bad apple spoil the bunch. When friction is clearly stemming from the actions of a single individual, remind that person that the ability to collaborate and treat coworkers with respect is a requirement of the job.  Steele says, “Collaborate?!?  No, Elaborate your dissatisfaction with the employee twice and then fire the troublemaker.”

3.     Help employees get to know each other. Provide opportunities for your staff to interact in non-work activities, such as lunches or volunteer activities; familiarity can breed greater understanding.  Steele says, Oh please!  Strong Bosses don’t get involved in familiarity.  Remember familiarity breed’s contempt.  Keep your distance from employees and don’t waste time on socializing.

4.     Reward positive role models. Dole out praise, promotions and choice assignments to individuals who contribute to a supportive work environment. Recognizing staff for being team players sends a clear message that how they interact with others is as important as their job performance.  Steele says, “You can tell eggheads from Human Resources are involved with this suggestion.  Nothing is as important as job performance.  To suggest that being a team player is the same as being the top producer is just silly!

5. Make good hiring choices from the start. Hiring individuals with excellent interpersonal skills who are a good fit with your organization’s culture will reduce the potential for future conflicts.   Steele says, “It is a big mistake to look for interpersonal skills in hiring.  People like that talk too much and want to be happy.  I think you look for the best talent with the least interpersonal skills.  This way the new employee keeps their mouth shut, head down and focuses on the work in front of them.

Steele Steadiman is a Bosses’ Boss.  After a successful career in the business world, he is committed to showing weak leaders the path to control.  Steele is the author of “Squish Creativity Like a Bug.” He lectures and travels the world helping bring managers and leaders to his level.

Upcoming Leadership Boot Camp Seminars

The Leader’s Institute® Leadership and Public Speaking Boot Camp

A couple of times a year, we schedule one of our “big” seminars which covers all of the content from our two-day High Impact Leaders class, our two-day Fearless Presentations® public speaking course, and a lot of content from our Entrepreneur Workshops as well. If you can only attend one of our seminars, this is the one to travel to, because it definitely gives each participant the most “bang for the buck”. For details about the content of the Leadership Boot Camp Seminar, just click this link. If you’d like to save a spot for yourself and maybe a coworker or partner, make sure and register early as these seminars typically sell out. To register, just click the button next to any of the descriptions below.

3-Day Public Speaking and Leadership Boot Camp. This leadership course is a Big Event with Guest Speakers. Tuition is $499/person.

Dallas Leadership Boot Camp Registration May 19-21, 2011 Dallas/Ft. Worth, DFW Westin (8:00 AM to 4:30 PM)

Indianapolis Leadership Boot Camp Registration May 26-28, 2011 Indianapolis, Sheraton (8:00 AM to 4:30 PM)

Seating is limited in all of our public speaking courses and leadership seminars, and we reserve seats in each program on a first come, first served basis. If you want to attend one of these sessions, make sure and register early!

Leadership Skills Training Program — Dallas, TX

Leadership Training Class in Dallas, TX

We had a fun leadership class in Dallas on Tuesday and Wednesday. The High Impact Leaders class focuses on building confidence as a leader, presentation skills, how to build a great team, and how to position yourself as a great leader within your industry.

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(800) 872-7830

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