John Maxwell Team

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Priscilla Archangel is a John Maxwell Team Certified Coach, Teacher and Speaker.

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    Six Steps to Collaborative Problem Solving

    Win-win written on papers.Many years ago, when I began my career in human resources, a colleague gave me a piece of valuable advice. He told me that when working with our business partners, I should avoid being a “no” person, but instead find ways to say “yes.”

    Now, you must understand the context of this conversation. There were times when our business partners would make what I call “end” requests. That means when the business partner had a problem, they decided what action needed to be taken, then came to us and told us what to do. Obviously, in our humble yet expert opinion, their solution wasn’t the appropriate way to resolve the issue. Our partners weren’t necessarily trying to be difficult, or to violate policies or procedures, they simply wanted a quick resolution that fit their expectations. As HR professionals, the temptation for us, at least periodically, was to take charge of the situation and to do the proper thing. But the better result always included collaborating with them in understanding how to assess the problem and in finding the best solution. Continue reading

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    Developing Leadership Perspective: Fact vs. Reality

    Business People Analyzing Statistics Financial ConceptThere’s an old fable about three blind men who touched an elephant to find out what it was like. One man touched the leg and declared that the elephant was like a tree trunk. Another touched the elephant’s tail and declared that it was like a snake. The third man touched its side and declared that it was like a wall. A disagreement ensued as they each defended their perspective on the animal. After all, they knew what they felt.

    Were each of them right? Yes, and no. They each experienced a part of the elephant, but none experienced the whole. They each described the elephant from their perspective, but due to limitations in their vision and space, none of them could see it in its entirety. Only when they began to compare notes, and to walk around the elephant feeling different parts of it, could they begin to piece together a view of the entire animal. They had to experience it from different angles. Later, a sighted man came along and immediately saw the entire elephant. He quickly walked around the animal, sized it up and fully described it to the men. Their facts were not the same as reality.

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    The 3 C’s to Establishing Tone at the Top

    Team hands together

    Michael left the office early for once. He was on his way home to celebrate the position he had just accepted at a new company. After 25 years of hard work and great personal sacrifice, he finally got the VP position he felt he deserved. He had more than enough experience to step into the role and produce solid wins for his new employer. Everything was moving along smoothly until that night when he got the call from the executive recruiter. There was a problem with background check they just completed. They couldn’t find record of him having completed his MBA. He recognized that when he presented his credentials, he neglected to mention that he was two classes short of graduation, but he felt that his vast experience more than made up for that. Unfortunately for him, his new employer disagreed. The offer was withdrawn, not because he lacked the degree, but because he hadn’t come clean about it.

    Joan was celebrating for a different reason. Her team exceeded their stretch sales target for the fiscal year, a herculean effort on the part of everyone. Her leadership, strategic planning, and ability to pull the group together to find innovative approaches to problems had paid off. This news would be well received by investors and provide her and the team with a significant bonus opportunity. The president called and asked her to stop by his office. As she walked down the hall to see him, she imagined his congratulatory words. She might even get a promotion! But when she opened the door and saw a somber look on his face, and the HR VP already present, she knew the message was going to be very different. Someone had reported a few irregularities in Joan’s sales tactics. She had simply taken a bit of interpretive license in several guidelines, just a gray area that didn’t hurt anyone. But the president didn’t see it as a minor issue. And he dismissed her on the spot for her lack of integrity. Continue reading

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