Kevin Eikenberry

While my message today is always relevant, as we get closer to the end of the year, there are more and more goal-setting conversations. While these conversations are important and necessary, I believe too much emphasis can be placed on goal setting. Not because setting goals isn’t important, but because too many people exert effort to set goals then feel like the job is done, which is like going to the starting line of a race, crouching down in the blocks and feeling like you don’t need to run the race because your work is already done.

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Persuasion is not manipulation. If a connection between those words crosses your mind, it is time to eradicate it — and my goal in this short post is to help you do just that.

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I often get asked by leaders of internal groups how they can create a Customer focus when their team has no direct connection or interaction with the paying Customer. I dealt with this as a Supervisor when I worked at Chevron many years ago, so my advice comes from my three-part combo experience: As a leader in the middle of an organization, as a former sales person in that same organization, and now as a business owner and consultant for 23 years. Given that perspective, here is my three part answer to the question.

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Your employees likely fall into one of three groups when it comes to training: vacationers, prisoners or willing learners. How can you convert your vacationers and prisoners into willing learners?

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I often say that the feedback you give says as much about you as it does the person you are giving it to, and when I do people look at me funny. After all, the feedback I give you is about something you did, it isn’t about me at all, is it? Not so fast, my friend.

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I often say that the feedback you give says as much about you as it does the person you are giving it to, and when I do people look at me funny. After all, the feedback I give you is about something you did, it isn’t about me at all, is it? Not so fast, my friend.

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As a leader, you are a part of at least two teams — the team you lead and your team of peers. Often leaders don’t focus enough of their energy and time on one or the other of those teams, to everyone’s detriment. Today, I want to talk about how to build relationships with your peer team — especially if you are new, and they aren’t.

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Dialogue is a fabulous communication tool. It allows for clarity of understanding, closure and complete communication. When you think about it that way, you’d think — why wouldn’t I want to use it?

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Because you are reading these words, I am confident you have an achievement mindset — you are a believer in ongoing learning and development for yourself and those you lead. This belief is a big part of the answer to your question, but let me start someplace else. Because of how you see the world, it might be hard for you to understand why others might not be excited or looking forward to a training or learning experience. Let me see if I can give you some perspective, as well as some action steps.

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The title of this post is a great question and the answer is … It depends. Actually, there are, I believe, two answers that may seem in disagreement at first, but I hope they will be clearer to you in the time it takes you to read this short post.

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