Five Rules for A Really Great Life in 2020

We all need guidance. There is so much to figure out so we can live in a way that matters. And though this is individual work to do, I have created five universal rules that will help anyone have a really great life, a list I’ve assembled based on my more than 20 years of managing and coaching others (and doing this work myself).

Here they are.

  1. Life has its ups and its downs. Expect them. Use the ups to help you deal with the downs. Never stay down long.
  2. Never compare yourself to someone else. They are different on purpose and are better than you at some things and you are better than them at other things. Focus more on being your best self.
  3. Make the time to know what makes you happy and stay focused on it. Get clear about your goals and stay focused on them, regardless of the distractions and interruptions you encounter.
  4. Take nothing personally. As the expression goes, “What you think of me is none of my business.” Everyone can and will have their perspectives. Never let what others think and say distract you from being your best and truest self, and from focusing on what makes you happy.
  5. Make everything you touch better. My dad used to say, “It is not up to you to improve the world, just the part of it you touch.” Each day, make where you are – your relationships, your work, how you show up to your world – just a little bit better. Overtime, you will make things significantly better.

Consider using these to guide your thoughts, feelings and actions to set your direction in 2020. These guidelines can help you move through life happy, focused and living your definition of a great life.

By Jay Forte

Consider reading 3 Ways to Help Your Team Start Strong and Focused in the New Year

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Leaders – Seek out, Accept and Act on Feedback

By Jay Forte

Many of today’s leaders and managers still think they have all the answers, a way of thinking that remains from our industrial age. But in a world that constantly changes, it is important that all mangers and leaders be adaptive – that they be open to seeing things differently, be open to new ideas and realize being in charge doesn’t always mean they do things well.

Feedback, not constructive criticism, is critical for every manager and leader. The term “feedback” relates to commenting on both successful and unsuccessful performance. Providing supportive feedback can help any employee or manager do more of what’s working and address those things that are not working; it builds the employee-manager relationship. Avoiding or rejecting feedback creates strained manager-employee relationships, robs leaders and managers of the opportunity to see how their performance is affecting others and misses the opportunity for their development. All organizations should be able to provide meaningful feedback both up and down the chain of command.

In all of my mindfulness training with CEOs, I introduce a process to help them stop and notice what is effective and ineffective with their performance. If there are things about your management style, how you deal with challenging situations, your communication effectiveness or even your ability to share a clear and cohesive vision that are ineffective, you will benefit from the feedback. Solicit, accept and act on feedback. The goal is to constantly improve.

So, the question is, in your definition of manager or leader, are you open to feedback, not just applause?

If I were to ask your employees whether you are open to feedback, would they have the same response?

Here are three practical tips to seek out, accept and use feedback.

  1. Give your team permission to openly share their feedback. Go ask for feedback. Share how you best process their feedback so they can deliver it successfully. Let them know you are focused on constant improvement and that their input matters. This goes for both things done well and things that need improving.
  2. Accept, applaud and thank employees who deliver feedback successfully, wisely and professionally. This encourages them to continue to deliver the feedback. It also encourages a more successful manager-employee relationship as both parties have honest conversations that are results-based and committed to improvement.
  3. Act on feedback whenever possible. Participating in feedback and actually using the feedback are two different things. Employees will stop providing feedback if they feel it is ignored or not used. If the feedback is meaningful, work to implement it.

Take Action

Have a meeting with your team to discuss the value of feedback for all employees, including management, and how to do it successfully. Make a point of ensuring that feedback is for both successes as well as challenges to encourage better balance in your feedback. Acknowledge when it is done well to encourage its continual use. Its goal is to encourage behaviors to do more of what works and to improve what’s not working – at any level.

 

Consider reading Are Your Employees Sitting on the Sidelines?

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