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Now that we are getting back into the “Dog Days of Summer,” I thought we could all learn some valuable tips and tricks from some special leaders: my dogs Wonton and Chow Mein!  They are here to introduce the “WonChow Way to Effective Leadership.”  We hope you enjoy the first of our video blog series and benefit from three tips to being an effective leader and team player.

Tip 1: “Know thyself” – a famous Greek maxim that Plato shared in his teachings is still relevant today. In order to be an effective leader and team player, it is critical to know yourself. I am talking about really knowing the good, the bad, and the ugly. Do you possess the strategic self-awareness needed to be an admired “leader of the pack?”  As you will hear in the video, Wonton and Chow Mein have very different styles and like each of us, they are brilliant in their own ways.  Have you seen specific data that helps you understand your key strengths, core drivers and challenges? Can you rattle them off in a few seconds?  If not, I’d recommend some great tools that I often use in my coaching and consulting practice.

Tip 2: Great Tools for Self-Awareness –   I am certified to use several tools in my work with leaders and teams. Following are three favorite assessments:

The Hogan Leadership Forecast Series™ provides three in-depth reports that offer information about the characteristics, competencies, and values that underlie how a leader approaches work, leadership, and interaction with others.  I have used the Hogan assessment with more than one hundred leaders and find it to be invaluable working with individuals and teams. Deeply understanding what motivates you, what pushes your hot buttons and what assets you bring to your life and work is priceless!

Another great tool for teams and leaders is the Meyers-Briggs Type Indicator® that can be used for all levels of an organization. This tool provides rich data about how you interact with others and can help individuals and teams improve how they communicate, learn, and work. It provides a powerful framework for building better relationships, driving positive change, harnessing innovation, and achieving excellence.

The DiSC ® profile is also effective for all levels of an organization and provides essential self-knowledge about how you handle conflict, what causes you stress and how you naturally approach problem solving.

All of these assessments are invaluable to gain individual self-awareness, as well as team dynamics that have experienced change in team membership and work expectations.  As a bonus, these tools provide essential information to help us thrive in our personal lives as well. Better understandings of ourselves enhances our interactions with all the key players in our lives!

Tip 3: Support and Accountability – Have you experienced a lot of change recently?  Has your world been rocked by reorganization? A new boss? A new team to lead?  Get help! I highly recommend getting support from a trusted coach to help you navigate through these challenges.  I have a coach myself and getting help to work on your own self-development as a leader and team player becomes an investment in you, your business and those you interact closely with.  We can all benefit from the support of a trusted coach who can help us “fetch” the rewards of brilliant leadership and keep us on track!  As Wonton and Chow Mein have taught me, we can all use encouragement to help us “wag more and bark less”!

We look forward to sharing some more helpful tips in next month’s newsletter on Mindfulness and the WonChow Way of Leadership!