What it means to adapt your style

We all have a natural communication style. Generally speaking, you have a 25-50% chance that your natural style resonates with the person you are communicating with. You have a 50-75% chance your style does not naturally resonate. If you stick to only your natural style, you are communicating with The Golden Rule: communicate with others the way you prefer to be communicated with. I have been teaching The Platinum Rule of communication: communicate with others the way they prefer to be communicated with. I’m not teaching others to be someone they are not, but to notice who they are communicating with in order to get a better result. Here is an example from someone who I know finds this difficult but has gotten better results.

This person is an accountant. The behavioral descriptors of this person are Reserved, Steady, Precise, and Direct. She doesn’t like to waste time, chit-chat, or dilly-dally. She likes to get the task completed and stick to business. However, sometimes her communication and emails can come across as critical and people felt talked down to by her. She decided to make a change. Here is a recent email where she attempted to change her influencing and communication style to generate a more positive result….

“Happy Fri-yay!

I wanted to quickly mention I am seeing a lot of receipts and deposits that do not include correctly spelled and complete names – every one of the 3 first names, 5 middle and 10 last names with suffixes. LOL – just kidding.

It takes more time to verify names especially if they made a previous payment or are coming for Hazmat and paying $100 for a returning student and I cannot locate the name provided.

I realize we have new directors and staff that may not have known so just a gentle reminder and I know it seems to be such a little part of what all of you do but is part of paying attention to details so payments can be recorded correctly. 😊

If you have any questions, please ask, that is why I am here. 😊

Have an awesome weekend!”

Here is one of the responses she got back….”Good email. I like the tone and nudge here. It’s a definite improvement. Thanks for making the effort here.”

I know that took some effort and she may have felt a bit tired after writing (and re-writing) that one. However, the payoff may be worth it as she gets better results while building positive relationships.

If you are ready to level up your communication style, reach out to me and let’s get started. Have a great day!

Finding Inspiration in Unexpected Places: The Wisdom of Richard from Jamaica

Hello friends and clients of Lisk Associates. Today, I created my first article with ChatGPT in minutes. It is unedited. I hope you enjoy the result.

In the unassuming corridors of the Country Inn & Suites, a chance encounter with a server named Richard from Jamaica left an indelible mark on my day. As I descended to the breakfast area, a simple exchange of greetings unfolded a world of inspiration.

“Good morning,” I offered with a customary smile. Richard, unfazed by the routine of such interactions, responded with a profound declaration, “Yes it is!” Intrigued, I couldn’t resist delving further, asking, “Oh yeah, what’s good?” Little did I know that these casual words would unveil a motto that would resonate with me throughout the day.

With a gleam in his eye and a warm smile, Richard shared his personal mantra: “Today is a new day. Today is a new opportunity.” In those few words, a world of wisdom unfolded. It wasn’t just a statement; it was a philosophy, a way of approaching each day with a fresh perspective.

Richard’s outlook was infectious. As he navigated the breakfast service with diligence and grace, his mantra echoed in every interaction. It wasn’t about the tasks at hand but the mindset with which they were approached. The challenges of the morning were not burdens but stepping stones to growth and accomplishment.

In a world often clouded by routine and monotony, Richard’s wisdom served as a reminder to embrace each day as a gift. The simplicity of his motto carried profound depth, encouraging me to view every sunrise as an opportunity for renewal and endless possibilities.

As I left the Country Inn & Suites, Richard’s words lingered, leaving me with a newfound sense of optimism. In the hustle of everyday life, we often encounter unexpected sources of inspiration. Today, it came in the form of a server named Richard, whose uplifting motto has become a guiding light, illuminating the path to a brighter, more hopeful tomorrow.

DISC in Depth

I had a request this week for the bullet points as to why TTI DISC? Here are some of my thoughts and resources from our DISC partner, TTI Success Insights.

My point of view is DISC is a tool used to measure natural behavioral styles. It measures how a person prefers to communicate and how they prefer to get their tasks completed. DISC is a 4-factor model. Each factor has two sides. Below, I have a simplified definition of each factor and I have attached a link to a pdf for your benefit.

D = Dominance. How a person responds to problems.

I = Influence. How a person responds to people.

S = Steadiness. How a person responds to pace.

C = Compliance. How a person responds to procedures.

I use DISC as a part of our “Selecting The Best” process as well as team-building, professional development, and improved communication. If you have questions or opportunities, let me know: [email protected]

Here is a publication from TTI Success Insights on DISC in Depth: Everything you need to succeed providing an overview of the TTISI DISC report. Remember, not all DISC reports are the same.

Poll: What Do You Value From Lisk Associates

I was reading a recent article from my counterpart Briana Dudley on Value-Added Selling. At Lisk Associates, we are teaching you to identify the fact that people value things differently (Driving Forces & Hartman Value Profile). In order to offer value, you have to understand what your clients find valuable. The article identifies four primary client categories and what each finds most valuable:

Transaction-centric clients: These clients want the perfect solution at the best moment and for the lowest price.

Relationship-centric clients: These clients want a bond with their business “person”. They want a person who understands them and their needs.

Information-centric clients: These clients are more interested in knowledge. They want the information and education to serve their needs.

Partnership-centric clients: Similar to relationship-centric clients with the added business element. They want a person who not only knows them, but their business needs as well.

Lisk Associates has a mix of all four of these types of clients. I wanted to poll the audience…..Based on these four categories only, what type of client are you when it comes to what you value when working with Lisk Associates? Click the link below to answer:


Thanks to Briana for allowing me to use her article. Her original can be found by clicking below.

The Nine Roles of a Leader

As a leader in your organization, you have several roles. When I first started exploring this idea, I came up with about five different hats a leader wears. Today, I have nine different roles a leader may use in any given day. Some of the roles have similarities, but I can make a case for distinctions and uniqueness for all nine.

As you review this list, consider how much time you are currently spending in each role Vs. how much time should you be spending in each role. Here are my nine different roles (hats) of a leader.

1. Manager – The manager role involves moving something forward. Managing usually involves a metric or a goal and managing people, things, and/or processes toward that goal. Think “Project Management”.

2. Mentor – The mentor role focuses on giving advice/wisdom from experience about the organization, the industry, the job, the employee’s career, and anything else the person may want to talk about.

3. Coach – The coach role is designed to help someone get from where they are to where they want to be. The coach role focuses on the employee owning their own problems, opportunities, and solutions. What makes the coach role unique is it involves good listening and asking questions vs. giving advice. I call this “inquiries vs. assumptions”.

4. Self – The self role is doing your own job and handling the responsibilities of your job.

5. Boss – The boss role focuses on making tough decisions reserved for your job. These decisions may include the direction of the team/department/organization, hiring/firing, conflict management, and discipline. The boss role is not always popular. The best bosses gather the information they need, make the decision, and own the decision.

6. Leader – The leader role is the strategic, futuristic, and optimistic role. As the leader, you are out front communicating the strategic direction of the team/organization’s future. The excellent leader role builds community, fans, and followers. The leader role tends to have more of a “cheerleader” vibe; “We are going to be OK!”

7. Subject Matter Expert (SME) – SME’s are technical experts in the job, the organization, and/or the industry. It differs from the mentor role as the SME is more technical and the mentor role is more personal. SME advice is usually backed by fact where a mentor’s advice contains more instinct and experience.

8. Liaison – The liaison role bridges people, projects, and/or processes between departments. The liaison helps their employees get results from other departments that don’t report to them. The liaison role has also been called the integrator.

9. Sounding Board – Some call this the “therapist” or the “chief listening officer”. As a sounding board, you are listening to someone complain/compliment/chit-chat/talk/vent/spew/bitch & moan/whine (I’m sure you can think of other terms)/ about anything and everything that may or may not be job-related. I guesstimate there is an 80%-20% split between complaints/problems vs. compliments/opportunities in the sounding board role.

The best leaders know what hat they need to wear for any given situation and they recognize when they are changing hats to fit the current situation by saying something like, “I hear and value your concerns over the current vaccination and masking policy. Are you wanting me in listen-only mode (sounding board) or do you want advice (mentor) or do you want to work this out yourself (coach)?” The best also know when they feel they are spending too much or too little time in any given role and make the adjustment.

If you want help with role clarity regarding yourself or any job on your team or in your organization, please reach out to me: [email protected]

Which Candidate Said That?

I just had a call with one of our clients reviewing two candidates for a position. As we talked I mentioned I felt one of the candidates may be quicker to pick up on other people, tasks, and systems and the other may struggle more. I asked, “Did you happen to notice any areas where one of them seemed to “get it” more than the other?

My client said, “That’s amazing! You won’t believe this. One of the candidates was professional and we immediately connected with them. We were hesitant to even interview this candidate as they didn’t really have the industry experience.

The other candidate has the industry experience we are looking for but debated, almost argued with us about our selection process, didn’t want to do the video interview or complete their personal talent report stating they were not a fan of these types of tests. Even though this candidate has much more industry experience, we feel we can train those skills and are looking for someone more likely to fit in.”

How did we predict which candidate said what? One part of our “Selecting The Best” process uses the Hartman Value Profile. In the two graphs below, just look at the World View: People-Tasks-Systems columns for the two candidates. Without providing the technical analysis and getting in the weeds here, Candidate A doesn’t see People, Tasks, and Systems as clearly as Candidate B. Overall average score for Candidate A is 67 while Candidate B’s average score is 93. For those of you working ahead, did you notice they both have similar Self View scores?

While we didn’t know exactly HOW it would play out, we simply asked the question and let our client fill in the rest of the story. Our client already picked up on this confrontational vibe from Candidate A, but our personal talent report helped verify their gut instinct and added objective data to their subjective feelings. We let the job talk telling us what it wanted and we let the candidate data talk allowing our client to “Select The Best”.

If you want to improve your selection process, check out our “Selecting The Best” page or feel free to reach out to me: [email protected]

Which Career Would You Suggest For This Person?

I recently received an email from a client that said…

I was wondering if you would be able to help me use my TTI assessment to identify some career paths that may fit my personality and help me find joy at work? Through my own research, I believe that wealth management, consulting, business development, and business strategy may all align with my personality. I have been told banking or lending may be another place I would enjoy, but am quite unsure. I am still not entirely certain what I want to scour job boards for, but I know that the different personality traits identified here ring true with what I am looking for in a career.

I looked at this person’s report and pulled the behaviors, driving forces, and personal talents that were most natural, developed, and passionate about (natural strengths, energizers, and skills).

Behavioral Traits: Urgency

Driving Forces: Objective, Commanding, Structured

Personal Talents: Goal Orientation, Conceptual Thinking, Planning & Organizing, Problem Solving, Leadership

As you read over, do you feel wealth management, consulting, business development, business strategy, banking, or lending fit this person’s traits & talents? The answer is maybe.

What type of career would you recommend for this person?

I posted this question to our Lisk Associates Superuser community and got the following answers:

Emergency room doctor

Construction site manager

Navy Seal

Action movie director

Fighter Pilot

Squadron leader

Trauma surgeon

Agile project manager

Executive pastor

Trainer/consultant who works on a team but is not the owner/entrepreneur

Manager of TSA or Dept. of Homeland Security

Turnaround manager

Fractional COO

Director of operations

Events manager

Logistics Manager

Casino floor manager

Professional project manager

Air traffic controller

Law enforcement

Fire fighter

Management track in chosen field

Project management

Sales management

Operational leadership

Business Strategy

Marketing/product development

Lead in production/manufacturing facility


The superusers did a great job sticking to “career” vs. industry which presented a couple thought-starters to me:

#1. Understand the difference between role and industry. What is the difference between a role and an industry? Which of those two is more important? Would you rather have a great role in a bad industry or a bad role in a great industry?

#2. Be the best version of you. In order to do that you must work to your strengths and get clarity around what you want. It’s always better to focus on what you want vs. what you don’t. As one of our counterparts says, “When is the last time you went to the grocery store with a list of items you didn’t want?”

If you want help, coaching, mentorship on getting more of what you want, feel free to reach out: [email protected]

Have a great week!

Time Wasters

Time Wasters
We are all given the same amount of time in any given day. What you do with that time makes you more productive or less productive. We all have our natural behavioral style which both helps and hinders us. And, we all have potential Time Wasters that may make us less productive. TTI Success Insights has identified 30 potential time wasters listed below. After the initial list, each time waster is broken down in detail with a definition, possible causes, and possible solutions. Which of these are holding you back from being more productive?

Check out your time wasters in more detail and feel free to reach out to Lisk Associates to help you identify and improve upon your time wasters.

Cluttered deskCrisis managementDaydreaming
Desire to be involved with too many peopleExcessive socializingFailure to anticipate
Failure to clarify precise responsibilities with managerFailure to share informationFear of mistakes
FirefightingHabitsInability to say no
Lack of a written planLong lunchesLooking for hidden meaning
Not exercising authorityOpen door policyOverreacting to constructive criticism
Poor filing systemPoor delegationPostpone the unpleasant
ProcrastinationProlong events in order to gain improved results  Resisting change
Seeking all of the factsSeeking the best, but not necessarily workable solutions  Snap decisions
Tendency to be overly neat and orderly  VacillationWaiting for events to happen

Cluttered Desk
A cluttered desk is one that is overloaded by papers, supplies and equipment to the point of impacting the ability to be productive.

Possible Causes
• See organizing and filing activities as a waste of time
• Want everything at fingertips
• Do not conceptualize a system for grouping information and materials
• Have not established a timeline for tasks or projects

Possible Solutions
• Handle each piece of mail only once, i.e. pitch it, file it or delegate it
• Set up (or have someone else set up) an information storage and retrieval system
• Get off mailing lists that are of no interest to you
• Remind yourself that the time it takes to open “junk” mail robs you of time for more important tasks
• Establish a time limit for certain projects and only have current project material on your desk

Crisis Management
Crisis Management is defined as a management style that is consistently driven by uncontrolled external issues as the preferred method of managing. This style allows crises to precipitate rather than anticipating them and being pro-active.

Possible Causes
• Lack planning
• Place unrealistic time requirements on people and tasks
• Always looking for problems to solve

Possible Solutions
• Have a well defined operational plan
• Target key individuals to handle specific problems
• Ask for recommendations from key people
• Delegate authority and responsibility when possible

Daydreaming is being preoccupied with non-task or non-work related thoughts. It is being easily distracted from at-hand tasks and focusing on past or future events for prolonged periods of time.

Possible Causes
• Being a creative thinker and always thinking of new ideas
• Being more excited about the future than the here and now
• Bring personal problems to work
• See work as routine and unexciting
• Experience stress from working on something too long
• Focus on past pleasant experiences as a way of coping with routine and stress

Possible Solutions
• Learn to read body signals for fatigue
• Change routine
• Remind yourself that worrying about personal problems interferes with your productivity
• Set tasks/objectives

Desire To Be Involved With Too Many People
The desire to be involved with too many people is involvement that
extends beyond business interactions to the point of interfering with
work. Beyond being friendly, it is excessive socializing.

Possible Causes
• Have many interests
• Want to be seen as one of the gang
• Need praise and approval from others

Possible Solutions
• Recognize your time constraints
• Be selective in getting involved in activities
• Monitor energy level
• Keep personal and job related priorities in view

Excessive Socializing
Excessive socializing is defined as those interactions that go beyond the usual required time for discussing an issue or task. It can also be interacting too frequently with those who do not support or contribute to the accomplishment of daily priorities.

Possible Causes
• Enjoy people
• Want to be liked
• Are creatively motivated when with others
• Allow and even encourage visitors and telephone calls
• Haven’t prioritized daily requirements
• Confuse deadlines

Possible Solutions
• Keep daily priorities in view to keep you on task
• Set time guidelines for informal conversations, lunches and meetings
• Monitor your open door policy
• Screen and put a time limit on telephone calls
• Be willing to tell visitors and callers that you cannot be interrupted at this time

Failure to Anticipate
Failure to anticipate is the lock of focusing on possible outcomes or requirements.

Possible Causes
• Expect only the best to happen
• Expect everyone else to do their best
• Trust the system to run well
• Focus on the here and now rather than the future
• Resist change

Possible Solutions
• Set aside a specific amount of time each day to consider outcome possibilities
• Talk with others who may have prior experience with a specific task or person

Failure to Clarify Precise Responsibilities with Manager
The failure to clarify precise responsibilities with your manager assumes that you have a full understanding of his/her expectations. It infers that your manager understands your job and concurs with your assessment of requirements.

Possible Causes
• Unsure of how you will be perceived
• Don’t want to overstep authority
• Want to be a team player
• Want to help everyone so you don’t object to the manager when requests are being made that are not your responsibility

Possible Solutions
• Have informal conversations with the manager about his/her expectations
• Share with manager your expectations
• Clarify with peers and other managers your duties and responsibilities
• Read and discuss articles on “management by objectives”

Failure to Share Information
The failure to share information is the inability or unwillingness to discuss with others.

Possible Causes
• Don’t think others want to know the information
• Unclear of the way the information will be used/received
• Wait until asked before sharing information

Possible Solutions
• Let others know that they need to ask for information
• Share with those whose opinions you trust

Fear of Mistakes
Fearing mistakes is the mental process of focusing on negative outcomes and is often a preoccupation with past mistakes.

Possible Causes
• Want to avoid criticism
• Take criticism personally
• Want to be seen as efficient and competent

Possible Solutions
• Practice focusing on past successes
• For every mistake that you think might happen, write down two positive possible outcomes for a completed task
• Focus on several possible future outcomes

Firefighting is often defined as being pulled away from priority tasks to answer questions, offer solutions, delegate or solve problem-related minor issues. These issues usually “flare up” quickly and are “put out” quickly.

Possible Causes
• Desire to solve problems quickly and sometimes without adequate information
• Lack of delegation
• Lack of standard operating procedures
• Poor/wrong priorities
• Failure to fit intensity to the situation

Possible Solutions
• Establish a plan
• Create operational procedures for tasks and known problems
• Establish a “management by objectives” approach

A habit is a specific thought, behavior or way of doing something that was acquired by repetition or by reinforcement from self and/or others.

Possible Causes
• Have established routines that are comfortable
• Routine creates a feeling of security
• Resist change for change’s sake
• Have been praised repeatedly for a specific behavior

Possible Solutions
• Evaluate habits and decide which contribute to your accomplishments and which deter you from success
• Try new ways of performing a certain task
• Ask others for recommendations on different approaches
• Consciously practice changing your routine

Inability To Say No
The inability to say no is when you are unable to or feel powerless to refuse any request.

Possible Causes
• Have many interests and want to be involved
• Confuse priorities
• Fail to set priorities
• Do not want to hurt others’ feelings
• Do not want to refuse a superior’s request
• Do not feel comfortable giving “real” reason and doesn’t want to lie

Possible Solutions
• Realistically evaluate how much time is available
• Understand limitations and what can be done well
• Set daily and long-term priorities
• Learn to say no to those people and tasks that do not support daily and long-term priorities

Lack of a Written Plan
A plan in this context may be an overall business plan including mission,
goals, objectives, task requirements and utilization of resources. It may
also simply mean written priorities and a written daily plan of action.

Possible Causes
• Action oriented, want to get things done now
• Priorities keep changing (self- or other-imposed)
• Have been successful without a plan in the past
• Want to “go with the flow” and not be stifled by a written daily agenda

Possible Solutions
• Write down personal and job-related values and prioritize them
• Write out a long-term plan that will support those values
• Recognize that by having priorities clearly in mind, constant change will be replaced with change-by-design

Long Lunches
Long lunches are those that extend beyond the normal time for eating.
They could be kept within a specific time frame but are not.

Possible Causes
• Get involved in the excitement of conversation and forget about time
• See long lunches as a networking opportunity
• Like doing business in a social, non-threatening environment
• Use long lunches as a way to avoid unpleasant tasks, people or the work environment

Possible Solutions
• Set a specific time for lunch and STICK TO IT
• Have meetings in the office
• Set meetings right after lunch
• Have working lunches

Looking for “Hidden Meaning”
The habitual practice of looking for hidden meanings demonstrates the inability to take messages, information and people-signals at face value. It may indicate that issues and people are suspect or have potential negative impact on you and your work.

Possible Causes
• Critical listening ability may cause you to read more into a situation
• Want to look beyond the obvious
• Have a need for additional information
• Do not have a high level of trust in others

Possible Solutions
• Ask questions
• Share initial evaluation/opinion with others

Not Exercising Authority
Not exercising authority is the inability to make decisions that might adversely impact some people and compromises the success of task accomplishment. It is also the resistance to making the tough calls.

Possible Causes
• Want to be seen as supportive
• Believe people will do what is right
• Fear offending others
• Fear creating conflict between team members

Possible Solutions
• Have clearly defined and written performance objectives
• Have clearly written rationale for specific decisions
• Assign decision reporting to the deputy/assistant
• Appoint a strong deputy or assistant
• Have a “good guy/bad guy” image agreement with deputy/assistant

Open Door Policy
An open door policy in this context refers to giving unlimited and unmonitored access to anyone who wishes to see you.

Possible Causes
• Want to be seen as supportive and available
• Want the social interaction of people dropping by
• Have a difficult time saying “no”
• Use people interruptions as a way of procrastinating or justifying missed deadlines

Possible Solutions
• Set aside time to “close your door” and work on projects
• Set aside time to interact with co-workers
• Learn to prioritize activities and say “no” to low priorities
• Place your desk so that it is not always in “view” of those who pass by
• Avoid eye contact with people who walk by your desk or office

Overreacting To Constructive Criticism
Overreacting to constructive criticism is the inappropriate overt or covert response to feedback and recommendations.

Possible Causes
• Have a high comfort level with past methods
• Have high standards for work performance
• Think that your way is the correct way
• Don’t see the benefit of doing things differently

Possible Solutions
• Practice listening without evaluating comments from others
• Begin responding mentally with “that’s interesting” or “that’s a possibility” as a way of controlling immediate negative response
• Communicate feelings with peers and supervisors

Poor Filing System
A poor filing system is one that has no predetermined method for subject matter grouping. It is one that you may understand but is not usable by others who may need to retrieve information from your files.

Possible Causes
• Have not determined or prioritized subject matter groupings
• Categorize by emotions

Possible Solutions
• Set up a cataloging system that you AND others can use easily
• Have someone assist you in setting up a system
• Use cross-referencing indexes
• Computerize information

Poor Delegation
Poor delegation usually means the inability to discriminate between tasks needing your time and attention, and those others are capable of accomplishing.

Possible Causes
• Do not want to give up control
• Do not trust the abilities of others
• Do not understand the abilities of others
• Fear the talents of others
• Do not want to overload others

Possible Solutions
• Train and mentor others
• Develop a support team
• Give people the opportunity to help
• Recognize the time spent training others on routine tasks will result in gained cumulative time for higher priority tasks

Postpone the Unpleasant
Postponing the unpleasant is similar to procrastinating but is usually a continual reprioritizing of daily tasks. It is often a way to delay something that is not enjoyable.

Possible Causes
• Like low-conflict environments and relationships
• Want to feel the success of accomplishment so the simple tasks are done first

Possible Solutions
• Change your routine and, for one week, do the unpleasant tasks first
• See the accomplishment of unpleasant tasks as an equal or even greater achievement of success
• Reward yourself for every unpleasant task that you complete without postponing
• Confront those people who are causing you discomfort and discuss the problems

Procrastination is the process of delaying action. It is also the inability to begin action.

Possible Causes
• Priorities have not been set
• Do not see projects or tasks clearly
• Overwhelmed with commitments
• Hope that time will solve or eliminate the problem
• Fear of failure

Possible Solutions
• Set goals and establish priorities
• Break large projects into small steps and do one at a time
• Agree to follow established priorities
• Consider consequences if it doesn’t get done
• Remind yourself that you will avoid the stress of putting something off until the last minute

Prolong Events In Order To Gain Improved Results
Prolonging events in order to gain improved results is the process of doing and redoing, evaluating and re-evaluating and changing to and changing back as a way of “testing” the best possible outcome.

Possible Causes
• Want to ensure that success is always achieved
• Feel that if rushed, the results will not be satisfactory
• Hope situations will work out themselves

Possible Solutions
• Set realistic schedule and timeline
• Follow the schedule
• Seek advice or assistance from others

Resisting Change
Resisting change is the process of consciously or subconsciously not participating in the change process. Measures of resistance may be active or passive, not doing things the new way, or making excuses for not having tasks accomplished.

Possible Causes
• Need a high degree of security
• Like to maintain the status quo
• Routine/procedures have worked in the past
• One specific aspect of a proposed change violates sense of values
• A specific change is not seen as contributing to successful accomplishments

Possible Solutions
• Acknowledge that change is a natural part of any job
• Develop the habit of writing down all of the pros and cons of a specific change
• Evaluate each objection to a change
• If there is one specific objection that is overriding the ability to change, share the specific concern with those involved and seek advice or input from others

Seeking “All” of The Facts
Seeking “all” of the facts is thought and action of continually gathering new information and re-evaluating current information.

Possible Causes
• Want to be certain/prepared
• Want to avoid mistakes
• Want extended time for getting tasks done

Possible Solutions
• Set a timeline for gathering new information or evaluating old information and then take action
• Evaluate importance or risk factors to how much information is actually needed

Seeking The Best, But Not Necessarily Workable Solutions
Always seeking the best solution may prohibit getting the task accomplished. Something better is always on the horizon.

Possible Causes
• Want to do things right the first time
• Want personal approval for preciseness of work
• Fear criticism if solution doesn’t work

Possible Solutions
• Establish required standards
• Determine the solution that meets or exceeds those standards
• Set a timeline for making a decision or completing a task

Snap Decisions
Snap decisions in this context are those decisions that are made too quickly without having all the necessary information.

Possible Causes
• Impatience overrides need to wait for more information
• Try to do too much
• Failure to plan in advance
• Lack specific goals

Possible Solutions
• Ask for recommendations
• Establish process for decisions prior to situation occurring
• Establish standard operating procedures and alternative procedures for possible problems

Tendency To Be Overly Neat and Orderly
The tendency to be overly neat and orderly is usually a compulsive behavior that overrides the need to accomplish a task. More importance may be placed on cleaning off your desk than completing the actions required (out of sight, out of mind).

Possible Causes
• Easily distracted by non-related materials in view
• Need a systematic method of working
• Catalog information for later retrieval

Possible Solutions
• Recognize that this is a strength as long as it is not over extended

Vacillation is the process of regarding an issue or a requirement in one way at one time and a different or the opposite at another time. It is the inability to make an immediate decision and stick with it.

Possible Causes
• Lack confidence in information
• Fear making the wrong decision
• Lack a systematic decision making process
• Hope that time will eliminate the problem or issue

Possible Solutions
• Acknowledge that the decision will be the best based on experience and available information
• Establish a time frame for making decisions
• Develop a method for analyzing a problem and choosing a solution
• Seek the advice or input from key people involved in the issue

Waiting For Events To Happen
Although patience may be a virtue, being pro-active allows the decision-maker to be in better control of events within their scope of influence.

Possible Causes
• Want to affect the here and now
• Fear rushing into something will show unpreparedness
• Need for high standards inhibits getting started

Possible Solutions
• Plan alternative solutions
• Determine most likely scenarios
• Implement a plan that best meets those needs without jeopardizing other scenarios

Be A Goldfish: Team Building The Ted Lasso Way

I recently had a client ask if I had seen Ted Lasso.  I said no.  She then said, “you have to see it. You are Ted freaking Lasso!”   I started watching and was immediately hooked.  I do bear a striking resemblance to Ted Lasso.  OK, not the way we look, but what we do.   I work with teams across all types of verticals including sports, utilities, manufacturing, healthcare, and everything in between. While I’m rarely an expert in their business, they all have one common thread: people.  All of our clients know the first question we ask: What percentage of your results relies on other people? If your answer is more than 50%, you may want to watch Ted Lasso if you haven’t already. Here are some Ted Lasso team-building lessons from Season 1.

“Taking on a new challenge is like riding a horse; if you are comfortable while you’re doing it, you’re probably doing it wrong.”

“You could fill two internets with what I don’t know about futbol.”

“Training makes perfect.”

“Smells like potential.”

“If he thinks he’s mad now, wait until we win him over.”

“The harder you work, the luckier you get.”

“Do you know what the happiest animal on earth is?  It’s a goldfish.  Do you know why? It has a 10-second memory.  Be a goldfish.”

“I have a real tricky time hearing people that don’t believe in themselves.”

“The easiest way to get that done well is to do it well.”

“A teacher that tells a bully not to pick on someone is just gonna make it worse.”

“You remind me of one of those robot vacuums, kind of just wandering around looking for dirt.”

“That’s the funny thing about coincidences, they just kind of happen.”

“For me success is not about wins and losses.  It’s about helping these young fellas be the best versions themselves on and off the field.”

“You two knuckleheads have split our locker room in half.  And when it comes to locker rooms, I like ‘em just my mother’s bathing suits, I only want to see them in one piece.”

“You don’t need to be best friends to be great teammates.”

“Youth is wasted on the young.  Don’t let the wisdom of age be wasted on you.” 

“You know why we won the league (previously)?  It’s the same shit Yankee Doodle is peddling.”

“This is an undiscovered mega-talent.  You do not want to judge this book by it’s cover.”

“We’re broken.  We need to change.  I know change can be scary. Most of the time change is a good thing.  I think that’s what it’s all about, embracing change.  Being brave.  Doing whatever you have to so everyone in your life can move forward with their’s.”

“Know thyself.”                     

“You haven’t been fired, it’s worse…you’ve been promoted!”

“Y’all got a saying, “it’s the hope that kills you.”  I disagree…it’s the hope that keeps you alive.”

If you BELIEVE more than 50% of your results relies on other people, check out our suite of products/services or reach out to me: [email protected]

Hiring is Dead (again)

100% of Lisk Associates’ clients believe the majority of their results relies on other people. They intentionally “Select The Best”. Selecting The Best has always been a top priority, concern, and strength of our clients. Over the past 30 years we have seen many different hiring cycles. Today’s hiring cycle is unique (sort of). It’s unique in that people are making more money staying home on unemployment than many businesses can pay. I don’t blame people for not applying (especially now that school is out for the summer), it’s the way the system is currently set up. What’s not unique is the fact that we’re short on candidates. Remember not long ago when unemployment went below 4%?

Our clients see hiring as a competitive advantage and this cycle has them frustrated. One of my clients said to me, “Ryan, no offense, but your assessments for hiring don’t mean sh*t if we can’t get any applicants.”

Another client said, “If we get a candidate come in to interview, our goal is to not let them leave without making an offer.”

Another has said, “We now have to compete with our usual competitors plus Chick-Fil-A, Costco, and the U.S. Government for talent.”

Those of you that know me know my usual response. “I hear you. I agree with you. Now, what are you going to do about it?”

To get unstuck, here are five thought-starters to consider.

#1. Get your head right. Start with yourself (put your oxygen mask on first before helping others) and work your way through the five levels of change (see blog link below). You need to let go of the way things were, navigate disorientation, and get back to re-appraisal and re-commitment as soon as possible. Three years ago, we didn’t have any candidates. We have navigated change before and the process is no different. How to flatten your curve during major change.

It also helps to think about the future of your company, team, or department. What could your A-team look like 6 months from now? Unemployment won’t last forever (I don’t think), kids will go back to school in the fall and at least some people will want to be a part of something bigger than they’ve got going on now.

#2. Re-appraisal & re-commitment: Work will never go back to being what it once was. It’s time to re-appraise what your organization is offering besides a salary. Why would someone want to work there? Why would someone stay there? Remember why you got started there (and stayed). People will be able to look for something they feel connected to.

#3. Everybody wants something. People will stay at organizations where they feel like they are a part of something, they felt known, cared about on a professional level, and what they’re doing matters/making a difference (Patrick Lencioni’s 3 Signs of a Miserable Job). Become intentional about uncovering what the person really wants.

#4. Develop the person from day 1. If you are going to “settle” on your selections, then invest in more development. This is where the Job Benchmarks and Key Results Sheet work in conjunction with the Personal Talent Report or the Talent Insights Report or The Engagement Report or even the Style Insights Report to point you in the right direction from day 1 for on-boarding and development.

#5. Quarterly reviews. If you are doing annual reviews…STOP. If your company is doing annual reviews, you need to START doing your own quarterly reviews. If you are doing quarterly reviews…CONTINUE doing them. In today’s world of instant results and gratification, the annual review makes no sense. Candidates are being coached to ask interviewers, “What is your typical job or employee appraisal process?” If you answer with either, “Uh…we don’t have one” or “Annual appraisal” they are more likely to view your organization as one with antiquated management methods vs. what they are looking for which is RealTime Coaching and feedback.

If you’re reading this article, your organization has more to offer than a competitive salary. The one thing you can’t afford to do is recruit, interview, and hire the way you have always done. It’s time to let go of the old, re-appraise, re-commit, and level up Selecting The Best.