Monthly Archives: October 2013

10 Steps to Succeed at Work: Step Nine

9. Look Ahead

It is always great to do the job of today. I encourage everyone to be the best they can be at whatever they are doing. At the same time it is important to plan ahead and look ahead and do figures arrowsome strategic thinking. A lot of people need time to think outside the box and do this strategic thinking. I therefore encourage you to take some time on a monthly basis to think about:

  • Where am I/are we today?
  • Where do I/we want to be for the future?
  • How should I/we get there?

Part of looking ahead is making sure you understand the competitive and market pressures of the future. This goes along with step 3: Continuously Improve. Always read, be aware of what is happening in the world, and how it impacts your particular business, expertise, or industry.

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DD-Queen-of-Loyalty-2011Dianne Durkin is president and founder of Loyalty Factor, a specialized consulting and training company that enhances employee, customer and brand loyalty for some of the nation’s most prominent corporations and many smaller businesses. Durkin has over 25 years experience in finance, direct sales, international marketing and training and development.

Dianne’s proven expertise lies in helping companies quickly get to the core issues and outlining their impact on the organization’s profits, productivity and people. She authored “The Loyalty Factor: Building Employee, Customer and Brand Loyalty,” and the newly released “The Power of Magnetic Leadership: It’s Time to Get R.E.A.L.

Information Exchange: Innovation is the Secret Sauce to Business Success

Welcome to the Loyalty Factor Information Exchange, a bi-weekly service providing summaries of major publications and books on various management and customer relationship topics. 

 Loyalty Factor has been instrumental in helping companies:

  • Increase Customer Satisfaction by 20 – 33%
  • Increase Revenues by 50% in 18 months
  • Increase Manufacturing Production by 200% in 18 months
  • Simplifying mergers and acquisitions

This weeks InfoExchange is about innovation and how it contributes to your businesses success!

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Innovation is the secret sauce for business success.  The big question is what does innovation look like?  It’s visionary leadership, a commitment to acceptance of breakthrough thinking and a supportive environment that allows crazy new ideas.

Recently I have spent a lot of time discussing creativity.  Today I would like to offer some tips on how you can unleash creativity in your organization:

  1. Reward it.  If you want employees to think out of the box, you need to motivate them and the best motivation is making sure the suggestions are taken seriously.  In addition, offer some type of reward.
  2. Provide an outlet for employees to voice their new creative ideas.  There is always the outspoken person, at the same time there are numerous shy people who have great ideas.  A suggestion box or an innovation lab where people can post their ideas with anonymity and confidentiality.
  3. Set up innovation teams.  The team will be asked to come up with new ideas on how to improve a particular work process or a particular aspect of the department.  Individuals with different areas of expertise and backgrounds collaborating on a project provides a huge interchange of thoughts and ideas.  A uniformed group leaves little room for ideas to flourish.
  4. Create a fun positive working environment.  Too serious a mindset or environment can hinder creativity.  Psychological studies have revealed that positive mood can cause creativity to soar because it allows individuals greater flexibility in thinking.  Incorporating fun into the workplace through team bonding activities and retreats can be a crucial element in injecting creativity into the workplace.

For more fabulous tips on how to unleash creativity in your organization or to schedule Dianne as a speaker for your next corporate event, contact Loyalty Factor at 603.334.3401.

10 Steps to Succeed at Work: Step Eight

8. Embrace Change

In today’s business world, change is continual. If organizations are not changing they are not growing. Everyone in the organization needs to be part of the change process. You need to be a “change agent”. Look for the positive aspects of the change, embrace the change, and be an influencer in helping others embrace the change. You may even want to be the person who initiates some changes. Going back to what we talked about earlier, volunteer to solve major business issues. While doing this be prepared for resistances and be prepared to be an advocate for the changing process. The way you are an advocate is to show people the benefits to them. Everyone is interested in: What does this mean for me? In answering that question, you will get people to embrace any changes you are trying to implement.

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DD-Queen-of-Loyalty-2011Dianne Durkin is president and founder of Loyalty Factor, a specialized consulting and training company that enhances employee, customer and brand loyalty for some of the nation’s most prominent corporations and many smaller businesses. Durkin has over 25 years experience in finance, direct sales, international marketing and training and development.

Dianne’s proven expertise lies in helping companies quickly get to the core issues and outlining their impact on the organization’s profits, productivity and people. She authored “The Loyalty Factor: Building Employee, Customer and Brand Loyalty,” and the newly released “The Power of Magnetic Leadership: It’s Time to Get R.E.A.L.

Information Exchange: Connect, then Lead Part Two

Welcome to the Loyalty Factor Information Exchange, a bi-weekly service providing summaries of major publications and books on various management and customer relationship topics. 

 Loyalty Factor has been instrumental in helping companies:

  • Increase Customer Satisfaction by 20 – 33%
  • Increase Revenues by 50% in 18 months
  • Increase Manufacturing Production by 200% in 18 months
  • Simplifying mergers and acquisitions

Our information exchange this week highlights the articleConnect, then Lead” by Amy Cuddy, Matthew Kohut, and John Neffinger. This article was published in the July-August issue of the Harvard Business Review.

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In the last info exchange we highlighted Connect, then Lead from the Harvard Business Review by Amy Cuddy, Matthew Kohut and John Neffinger.  One of the key points in developing as a leader addressed “it is better to exercise warmth and be loved than feared.”  In this article we will provide the author’s hints of how to Exercise Warmth & Show Strength.

  • Find the right vocal level.  Speak with lower pitch and volume as you would if you were comforting a friend.  In doing so you signal that you trust those you’re talking with to handle things the right way.
  • Validate feelings. If you show your employees that you hold roughly the same worldview they do, you demonstrate not only empathy but, in their eyes, common sense – the ultimate qualification for being listened to.  If you would like others to listen and agree with you, first agree with them.
  • Smile – and mean it.  Smiling sincerely becomes self-reinforcing.  We tend to mirror one another’s nonverbal expressions and emotions, so when we see someone beaming and emanating genuine warmth, we can’t resist smiling ourselves.
  • Stand up straight. Good posture demonstrates authority and that one should be taken seriously.  Good posture doesn’t mean standing at attention, but rather reaching your full height and straightening the S-curve in your back rather than slouching.

As a leader, once you establish your warmth, your strength is received as a welcome reassurance!  Your leadership becomes a gift to those in your organization.

Loyalty Factor offers programs which teach concepts of NLP plus conscious empathetic listening techniques.  For more information about Loyalty Factor programs, contact us at 603.334.3401 or visit our website at www.loyaltyfactor.com.