Posts Tagged Situational Leadership II

6 Principles Of Committing To Your Commitment

Achieve Your Goals

Have you ever struggled with accomplishing, getting through, or getting started on something that you wanted to do? Many of us do. Often times we come up with an idea that we’re passionate about or that we know we can do but are hesitant to actually go through with it for fear we may fail or not have the drive or motivation to see it through.

In Ken Blanchard’s latest book, Fit at Last, Ken and fitness authority, Tim Kearin, follow Ken’s personal journey to improve his health and fitness. This quick read applies the battle with getting healthy and losing weight, something many of us can relate to, as an example of how sticking to a goal and making it happen can provide a sense of accomplishment, satisfaction, and happiness. Whether your goal is to get healthy, like Ken, start a business, or complete a major project at work, these six principles can keep you grounded as you tackle your goal.

Principle 1: Have Compelling Reasons and a Purpose

Figuring out what motivates you to make something a goal in the first place is the first principle that will set the stage to accomplishing your goal. Why do you want to do this? How will the outcome make you feel? What are the benefits that you will realize after this goal is met? If the goal is work related, find out whether or not your goal is aligned with your agency’s goals.

Principle 2: Establish a Mutual Commitment to Success

It’s tough to go it alone on any goal or task. Find someone who you care about, wants to see you succeed, and who can keep you motivated and remind you of why you started on this path in the first place. It is also important that you trust this person and value the feedback and support they can provide to you. Setting a mutual agreement that benefits both parties involved is a great way to not only hold you to your commitment, it also makes you want to accomplish your goal to reap the rewards once you reach your target.

Principle 3: Learn About Situational Leadership® II

Situational Leadership II (SLII) is a model that employs one common language and process for growing great leaders. It is a program that teaches leaders to analyze, diagnose, think, and apply leadership concepts effectively to reach their goals. SLII guides individuals at each developmental level, both business and personal, they encounter in every situation. When you have a clear understanding of your goal, your level of development, and the right leadership or support that helps you accomplish your objective, you increase your commitment, motivation, and productivity toward that task.

Principle 4: Develop Appropriate Goals

Jumping in and tackling a goal without carefully planning out your strategy can lead to burn-out and failure. Take the time to assess the goal and set some action items that will outline how you can accomplish each task. Making your goals SMART can also help you monitor your progress along the way.  Evaluate where you are at certain points so you can have a clear vision of how you are progressing in your goal.

Principle 5: Set up a Support System to Hold You Accountable

It’s inevitable that you’ll struggle at some point on your quest to accomplish your goal. When this occurs, it’s important to have a support system to keep you on track toward success. Whether it be a spouse, friend, or coworker at your agency, establish regular check-ins with this person or group to report on your progress. Again, trust is important here since you need to value the feedback that you receive from your support group in order to actually apply it.

Principle 6: Have Measurable Milestones to Stay Motivated

Anyone can become disengaged if they feel that they are not making progress on a goal or task. Setting specific milestones, big or small, will remind you of each success and how far you’ve come. Setting mini rewards along the way is another way to make your journey fun. Rewarding yourself suddenly turns your hard work into something that doesn’t even feel like work at all.

What other strategies do you use to stick to your goals and commit to your commitments?

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Mobile Management – A Good Strategy or Just Disruptive?

Today’s post was written by guest blogger, Jim Atwood, Director of Government Solutions at The Ken Blanchard Companies. Jim also presented on last week’s webinar, A Situational Approach to Leadership.

Last week’s webinar on taking a situational approach to leadership created a lot of discussion around the concept of mobile management.  Several participants related to the idea and shared their experiences with mobile management within their agencies.  I am most familiar with this type of management as it relates to the military… where a leader is usually only in a particular position for 18 months to 3 years.  However, following the webinar, I received several comments about how it also is a significant issue in other government agencies as well.  It was particularly evident with leaders who are in direct political appointee positions or those who report to political appointees. 

For me, mobile management is the planned periodic rotation of managers.  I know there are a great number of positive elements that can result from a well executed mobile management plan…unfortunately I have seen very few that were either well planned or well executed.  My experience has primarily been with individuals who, knowing that their position is short-term, have made immediate large-scale organizational changes to be able to “make their mark” on the organization.  Unfortunately, it appears that often the change was only for the sake of change…to be able to say that things were different from the previous manager.    The results of many of the changes I observed were rarely to enhance mission capability for the organization as a whole and often had a negative effect.   I recall one such individual who believed in this kind of change and said, “I like to really shake things up when I arrive…change everything.  I believe that dust settles at a higher level.”  He definitely shook things up but had a negative effect on morale and commitment to the command and its mission. 

I really am hoping that my experiences are not common…that I just had the bad luck of interacting with inefficient leaders initiating ineffective change.  But are my experiences the anomaly? 

What have been your experiences with mobile management?  How big of an issue is mobile management within the government?  What positive experiences have others had…and what were the resulting effects on the organization?

If you missed the webinar on taking a situational approach to leadership, you can still listen to the recording and hear more about how to lessen the negative impact of mobile management.

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Is a Situational Approach Right for You and Your Leader?

44% of respondents say that the individual supervisor is the highest contributing factor to increasing employee engagement; 39% by amount of communication; 31% by change in leadership – Towers Watson, 2010 Global Workforce Survey

Unfortunately, many supervisors utilize one approach to leadership that may seem to work for them, when in reality, it is not motivating their direct report. Leaders should tailor their leadership style to the situation. Adopting this approach increases open communication and fosters a partnership between the leader and the people the leader supports and depends on. Watch this short video on how you can implement a situational approach to leading your direct reports.

To hear more about leading with a situational approach, register to watch and participate on a live webcast with Jim Atwood, Director of Government Solutions for The Ken Blanchard Companies. The webcast will be on Thursday, February 2nd at 9:00am PST followed by a live chat with Jim here on How Gov Leads.

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Analyzing performance management: Is your leadership style effective?

To bring out the best in others, leadership must match the development level of the person being led.

In order to improve performance management and efficiency, several federal agencies are using analytics to identify problems, identify progress, and share information and results. The Partnership for Public Service and the IBM Center for The Business of Government reviewed four agencies that are using data analysis to save money, improve services and more effectively achieve their goals. The agencies that were reviewed include Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Each of these agencies is actively using analytical tools to determine the success of specific programs they have implemented. The agencies highlighted in the study shared certain practices that they all used to gather data and turn the information into knowledge that improved their program results:

  • Leaders focused on transparency, accountability and results.
  • Staff had a clear line of sight from where they stood to the desired goals and outcomes.
  • Agencies invested in technology, tools and talent.
  • Agencies cultivated and leveraged partnerships across the agency and with partners who deliver services.

Equally as important as the analytical tools used to improve performance management is the leadership style and direction managers use with their direct reports.

Leaders play a critical role in communicating a clear vision, setting expectations and calling for accountability for results.

Oversupervising or undersupervising has a negative impact on people’s development. That’s why it’s so important to match leadership style to development level. This matching strategy is the essence of Situational Leadership II®, a leadership model that delivers an effective approach to managing and motivating people. It opens communication and fosters a partnership between the leaders and the people the leader supports and depends on. SLII is based on the beliefs that people can and want to develop and there is no best leadership style to encourage that development. You should tailor leadership style to the situation.

Check out this fun video, narrated by Ken Blanchard, about how the right leadership can make a world of difference in your agency’s success.

You can also access the study on how agencies are using analytics to measure performance management and improve program success.

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Change is A’Coming to Rocket City

An article in Government Executive magazine announced that Huntsville, Alabama is becoming the next stomping grounds for several government agencies.  This transition kicked-off with the expansion of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) in 2005 when the Missile Defense Agency learned that they would be relocating their agency from a Washington suburb to Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville.  Since that announcement, several agencies have followed in the MDA’s footsteps. A few of the MDA’s neighbors now include:

  • 1700 positions from the AMC and USASAC
  • 180 positions from SDMC
  • 400 positions from the Aviation Technical List Center & Rotary Wing Platform
  • 113 positions from  the 2nd Recruiting Brigade

When the BRAC transitions are completed in September 2011, approximately 4700 positions will be relocated to Redstone.

Organizational change is a fact of life in the workplace.

All of this change has led to increased stress levels on the organizations and people involved.  The transition has required employees to wear multiple hats while leaders have been implementing several training efforts to get others up to speed. 

Leading people through change is an ongoing challenge in any agency.  So how do BRAC or other leaders maximize high levels of productivity and morale and ensure a successful transition?

A U.S. Department of Education project originally conducted by Gene Hall and his colleagues at the University of Texas suggests that people are faced with change express 6 predictable and sequential concerns.

  1. Information concerns
  2. Personal concerns
  3. Implementation concerns
  4. Impact concerns
  5. Collaboration concerns
  6. Refinement concerns

Resolving concerns throughout the change process builds trust in the leadership team, puts challenges on the table, gives people an opportunity to influence the changes process, and allows people to refocus their energy on the change.

At the Ken Blanchard Companies, new work by Pat Zigarmi, Judd Hoekstra, and Ken Blanchard on the Situational Leadership II and Leading People Through Change programs provides guidance for diagnosing concerns and then using the appropriate change leadership strategy to address those concerns.

Watch this video of Ken Blanchard discussing the reality of change.

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