My daughter has just won several leadership level awards with her company - one of which is for all of Canada! Many of her co-workers and customers have expressed their thanks for her work while others stand in awe hoping that they can learn from her.
Kristal adopted and used the following success principles that will help you to improve your performance should you choose apply them:
- Accept your role as problem-solver - It doesn't matter what career you are in, there are people who will turn to you for help. Do not become annoyed or frustrated with their questions but instead be thankful that they trust you.
- Develop good system so you are always organized - If someone asks Kristal a question more than once, she sets up a chart, graph or handout that she can have ready for others who likely will have the same questions or needs. Email is sorted into folders so it is easy to find and she always plans her schedule well in advance.
- Communicate and follow-up in writing - It is easy for people to say that they "don't remember" or "didn't understand". If you put things into a written format, they can read it over and over again. Also, if they claim they lost it or didn't get it, you can easily forward a copy to them.
- Do what your employer requests (Even if your co-workers don't) - When you are asked to take a course, use technology or write reports it is important that you comply. Many employees decide that they don't have time or that these requests aren't important but management asks you to do them for a reason. You will never understand the reasoning properly until you do what is asked.
- Set goals - Anyone can, with a little practice, learn how to hit a target with a bow and arrow - unless you are blindfolded! You also can't hit a business target if you can see it. Write down the goals that you have for daily, weekly, monthly and yearly progress.
- Make sincere promises and honour them - When you state that you will do something - DO IT! So many people over-promise and under-deliver.
- Develop healthy professional boundaries - You are hired to do a job and going to work to have your social needs met is not honest or productive. You do not have to like the people you work with or for but you do need to respect them and offer ethical service.
- Always be open to learning - Everywhere you turn there are ways that you can improve yourself and your career: read a book, talk with an expert, research on the internet, take a chance!
- Honour your relationships - When Kristal is out of town she finishes her site visits and then returns to the hotel. While she is waiting for room service to bring her dinner, she does her exercises. Then, when the meal arrives, she SKYPES her family and they all eat together while they talk about the day.
- Celebrate success - Once you have reached a goal, treat yourself! You don't have to spend hundreds of dollars. Perhaps a new pen, specialty coffee or visit with a friend would be enough to say "Good job!"
Unfortunately, customer service is not always very good but this fact, couples with your commitment leaves the door open so that with a little bit of organization and effort, you too, can win the leadership awards just like Kristal.
Dr. Linda Hancock, the author of “Life is An Adventure…every step of the way” and “Open for Business Success” is a Registered Psychologist who has a private practice in Medicine Hat. She can be reached at 403-529-6877 or through email firstname.lastname@example.org