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A Message for Grads: Success Is a Zigzag, Not a Straight Line

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Graduation season is here again. It’s exciting to think about all the young people with a lifetime ahead to shape as they choose. There are so many possibilities available, so many paths they can take. Yet, another word for “many possibilities” is uncertainty. Sometimes, for young people (and for all people!), uncertainty can be quite scary. They may worry that the decisions they make right now will set their course for life. What if they’re making…
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How to Relieve Anxiety and Build Trust in the Workplace

Closing the Loop Relieves Anxiety and Builds Trust

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Anxiety is a real emotion, and one that receives lots of attention. Why? Because it can be a very serious issue that impacts a person’s well-being. But anxiety isn’t just connected to issues in our personal life. It also manifests in the professional realm. The form of anxiety we’ll explore today is the anxiety that can happen when we don’t “close the loop” to assure others that action has been taken. If the person you…
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Coworkers May Hold the Key to New Employee Retention

Coworkers May Hold the Key to New Employee Retention

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My job provides me with a fantastic opportunity to learn from many smart and successful leaders. Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting Ralph Stayer, owner of Johnsonville Foods, headquartered in Sheboygan Falls, Wisconsin. I was presenting at NCH Healthcare System in Naples, Florida, and he was in the audience. Johnsonville Foods started as a small butcher shop. Today it has more than a billion dollars in annual sales and offers products in more than…
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Getting Clear on Deliverables Moves Results

Getting Clear on Deliverables Moves Results

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We all have moments of clarity, those times when something we may not have been aware of becomes noticeably clear to us. A few of these came to mind over the past several weeks. One is around how we think about deliverables. Employee engagement is a topic most organizations focus on. It shows up in goals. Yet, is engagement the goal, or are items like reduced employee turnover and increased productivity the desired outcomes? This point comes up often when I…
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How Great Communication Pays Off: Six Signs Your Organization Is Flourishing

How Great Communication Pays Off: 6 Signs Your Organization Is Flourishing

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Part Five in a Five-Part Series on Communication and Cultures of Trust Over the past four weeks, we have explored the subject of communication and the role it plays in building a culture of trust. As we discussed early on, great communication helps leaders create clarity and reduce anxiety, demonstrate empathy and understanding, build strong relationships with employees, and much more. (All of these contribute to trust and, ultimately, high performance.) We’ve also talked about what keeps…
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From Surviving to Thriving: How Leadership Training Can Transform Post-Acute

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COVID-19 was tough on everyone, but one of the hardest hit areas was post-acute. It was a scary time. Residents were struggling. Caregivers were leaving. Stress and burnout were rampant. Organizations were in survival mode—just trying to get through the day. In the aftermath of the pandemic, post-acute is struggling with several realities. One, there’s a serious staffing shortage and high turnover. Two, morale continues to be low, in large part because of that short-staffing. Three, with…
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These Conversation Starters Help Leaders Build Trust

10 Conversation Starters to Help Leaders Build Trust

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Part Four in a Five-Part Series on Communication and Cultures of Trust Welcome to the latest installment in a series on trust and communication. Last week we talked about what leaders can do to create the best odds that employees will “hear” what they’re saying and engage in the conversation. (Click here to review.) This week we’ll share some powerful tactics leaders can use to spark trust-building conversations. A great way to build trust is…
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Creating the Best Odds for Being Heard

Creating the Best Odds for Being Heard

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Part Three in a Five-Part Series on Communication and Cultures of Trust For the past few weeks, we’ve been exploring the relationship between trust and communication. This is one of the central themes of The Human Margin: Building the Foundations of Trust, the new book Dr. Katherine A. Meese and I coauthored. Good communication builds trust between leaders and employees, which is why it is so important for leaders to be well-trained in this area. In last…
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What Keeps Leaders from Communicating Well?

What Keeps Leaders from Communicating Well?

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Part Two in a Five-Part Series on Communication and Cultures of Trust Communication is one of the most powerful tools we have for building trust. As we discussed a few weeks ago—and as Dr. Katherine A. Meese and I talk about in our new book, The Human Margin: Building the Foundations of Trust—trust is crucial in the post-Covid workplace. It’s at the heart of everything today’s employees want. Making sure leaders know what to say and…
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How Good Communication Helps Your Organization Thrive

How Good Communication Helps Your Organization Thrive

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Part One of A Five Part Series on Communication and Cultures of Trust In last week’s column, we talked about why building a culture of trust in your organization is more important than ever. It helps with retention, engagement, and employee well-being, and sets everyone up to do their best work. And as Dr. Katherine A. Meese and I discuss in The Human Margin, communication is one of the best tools we have for building trust. Because good…
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