EQUIP - Preparing for SuccessJun 01, 2022
The second step in our process is to EQUIP people to prosper. That is also our primary mission. But what does that mean?
"You only have the internal resources to meet the next challenge or take advantage of the next opportunity that you have built to that point." Steve Goodner
When we think about internal resources, three come to mind: Energy, Focus, and Mindset. There may be others that you would add to this list. Skills, experience, unique talents. They all have something in common, they can be developed and enhanced. They are not fixed. This is important as it allows us to grow, gain knowledge and wisdom, learn new skills, increase our capacity.
Someone asked me this week, "How do I know if my people have reached their capacity?" Great question! First, go back to the first step in our process and Assess. Gain clarity on what people are spending their time, energy, and focus on. I recently did an initial coaching time with a business owner. He was very frustrated because he seemed to be busier every day, but got less and less done. I asked him to do one simple exercise: for 2 weeks, keep a log of how you are spending your time, energy, and focus. Literally, track the specific amounts of time spent on whatever he was doing in the workplace. Can you guess how much time, energy, and focus he spent on the things only he could do...5%. When you add in the things he needed to be involved in, that number rose to 30%. That means 70% of his time was spent on things that other people could probably do without him.
Growth is vital to individuals, teams, and organizations. ESPECIALLY in light of our current economic and labor challenges. Growth increases capacity, expands individual and leadership bandwidth, and most importantly, opens the door to realize more capacity and bandwidth.
Equip also means to develop new skills. This is an often overlooked opportunity in organizations. Many times the initial tendency is to bring in additional talent. But what if people already in the organization were given the opportunity to learn new skills? They already know how the organization works, the culture, and the people. This could be untapped potential that could provide huge ROI.
Here are the skills most lacking in organizations today:
- Practical management skills
- Emotional intelligence (for connection, collaboration, leadership, engagement, retention)
- Effective hiring processes
- Creating liberating structures
If I could only bring one new skill set into an organization today, hands down, it would be emotional intelligence!
The most important asset any organization has are people. Cultivating a learning culture, or what some call a "Deliberately Developmental Organization" is the fastest way to create a competitive advantage. There is a great quote from the book, "An Everyone Culture" by Kegan & Lahey. “In most organizations, everyone is doing a second job no one is paying them for…most people are spending time and energy covering up their weaknesses, managing other people’s impressions of them, showing themselves to their best advantage, playing politics, hiding their inadequacies, hiding their uncertainties, hiding their limitations. Hiding."
What is the solution? Foster a learning culture where people are encouraged to grow, learn new skills, try new things, and where mistakes are learning opportunities. It takes some effort to make this happen, but the results are well worth it!
When we say, "Equipping People to Prosper", we mean a 360 degree growth and development process intentionally designed to help people reach the desired outcomes. Change starts from the inside and moves outward. This is true in people, teams, and organizations.
When we invest in equipping people, we invest in future success.
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