4 Ways to Seize The Greatest Opportunity Leaders Miss

Good things get in the way of great things.

Day-to-day “good stuff” prevents leaders from seizing their greatest opportunity.

the real opportunity is next time not last time

7 good things leaders do:

  1. Articulate, promote, and live organizational values.
  2. Seize opportunities.
  3. Avoid blame and own problems. (Don’t allow problem-fixing to persistently overshadow opportunity-seizing.)
  4. Rise out of the weeds to reconnect with the big picture.
  5. Gather information and make decisions.
  6. Deliver results through others.
  7. Move forward by learning from mistakes.

(And much more.)

4 ways to seize the greatest opportunity leaders miss:

Talent development is the greatest opportunity leaders miss.

Yesterday, after a two hour session, I asked a team what they’re learning about developing talent. Here’s some of their feedback.

#1. Embrace the awkward silence.

Silence in coaching is good. Space to think is opportunity to take responsibility.

Filling the awkward silence for someone blocks their growth.

#2. Shift to forward-facing curiosity.

The real opportunity is next time, not last time.

It doesn’t take a genius to give excuses. 

“What will you do next week,” is better than, “Why did you fall short last week?”

When strategies are repetitions of ineffective behaviors, say, “That didn’t work last time.” After challenging ineffective strategies, generate alternative approaches. “What will you do differently next time?”

#3. Say what you see.

Development requires feedback.

Describe behaviors that reflect resistance. When someone leans back and crosses their arms, say, “I notice you just leaned back and crossed your arms, what’s going on for you?”

Describe behaviors that serve others well. “Your ability to learn from failure and move forward is powerful. How can we apply that in this situation?”

#4. Judge people through the lens of their aspiration and values, not yours.

Bring out their best. Don’t impose your aspirations on others.

  1. Choose language they use.
  2. Define their goals for their growth.
  3. Challenge people to challenge themselves.

People do things for their reasons, not yours.

What have you learned about developing talent?

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