Whether you are a parent, teacher or manager what makes you an effective leader is your ability to truly engage, collaborate and influence. Do this and the discretionary effort will follow as a result of trust, good rapport and walking your talk e.g. achieving a mutual agreed goal.
The only way I knew how to deal with this dreaded process of ‘letting go’ was to write myself a “Dear Life” letter. This is for all of you out there who today (yes tomorrow is another day) are facing the same challenge as me…..STAYING POSITIVE
Thank you for the journey so far. I’ve learned a hell of a lot in my 40 years and can safely say that people will undoubtedly let you down and equally surprise you too!
Whilst I’m grateful for the diversity of people, I do wish we invested more time treating each other with respect and dignity. Ok I get it we don’t live in a perfect world….I’ve certainly had my fair share of ups and downs and I’m sure I’ve pissed a few people off along my journey.
Now to everyone out there that says…don’t let it get to you, stay positive….do me a great big favour and let me have my moment. I want to be angry, I want the world to know I’m friggin pissed off BUT I also want the world to know that I take full responsibility for where my life has taken me so far.
Yes I have failed but I have equally achieved. I’ve lost money, I’ve gained money. I’ve been let down, hell I’ve let people down too. I will not let anger get in the way of my dreams. I will not give up on my dreams and I will not make excuses for not living my dream.
I will continue to BELIEVE that anything is possible. More importantly, that I can & will make it happen! And to all the negative people out there, please stay out of my way!
Here are some useful tips to ensure you shine for the big judgment day:
- Invest the time in your performance review. You need to be well prepared. Take the time to reflect on the highs and the lows as they are equally important for your development going forward.
- Stay calm, don’t allow your boss to throw you off line….remain professional by showing great poise and integrity.
- Speak with confidence and conviction about any aspect you wrote down in your review.
- Ensure there is enough two-way dialogue….remember it’s not just about you getting feedback but also you asking questions. Be sure to seek examples from your boss on where they thought you were a strong performer and visa-versa. This ensures transparency and avoids ambiguity.
- Don’t be afraid to challenge an opinion and/or judgment, especially if you have ample material to back yourself up.
- Don’t forget to seek independent feedback from both internal and external stakeholders as this will back up all the positive work you have done throughout the year as well as corroborate your strengths.
- Make sure you are aware of your weaknesses so that you are well prepared to counteract these against your strengths.
Arming yourself with the right information is a great way to boost your confidence and ensure you get treated fairly.
For example, by focusing on facts such as quoting a section of an Act (a statistic, credible report and/or result) is going to get you a lot more attention than focusing on a truth about a matter. Whilst there is absolutely nothing wrong with a truth, the downfall is that they are raw and emotional, which leave you vulnerable to others perception of your truth. By sticking to cold hard facts, you are less likely to draw too much emotion and allow you to focus on the real issue at hand.
To give a real life example, employee x got fired for pushing his luck with the boss (truth) or employee x got fired for breaching section x of the Fair Work Act (fact).
Now I’m not suggesting be a robot, but once armed with information, know when to pick your moments and when to use a fact over a truth and allow your confidence to shine!
The third and final component of the AAB* model focuses on your:
Your behaviour can and will influence your confidence levels.
Your communication style and body language, the way you conduct yourself needs to be in alignment with your behaviour. For example in the corporate arena, your behaviour will quickly reveal whether or not you will be a ‘cultural’ fit within an organisation. I cannot stress enough the importance of having the right attitude in order to drive positive behaviour. You need a positive attitude, a positive mindset. Patience and persistence will enhance your ability to successfully communicate with others.
The second component of the AAB model focuses on your:
You need to have the right attitude. A good example is a ‘can do’ attitude.
There is nothing worse than a poor attitude. A poor attitude has the potential to derail even the strongest of characters. If you find yourself thinking negatively all the time, you need to change your mind-set in order to gain back some self-control. I’m a strong advocate of positive thinking using the ‘4A strategy’ to help you focus on the things you do want rather than those you don’t. The 4A Strategy encourages you to:
Accept: the things you can’t change. Acceptance involves stopping, looking and listening to what is going on around you and answering to yourself ‘is being emotional going to help me in this situation?’
Adapt: to the situation. Listen to what the person is saying as you may have unrealistic expectations/deadlines.
Alter: so as to change the situation. Find an alternative route to your goals.
Avoid: topics that are going to trigger an emotional imbalance for you.