Eric Jacobson

Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

Six Questions To Ask Your Employees Today

In Constructive Feedback, Effective Communications, Employee Engagement, Employee Feedback, Employee Retention, Employee Satisfaction, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership on September 23, 2017 at 8:41 am

question mark people

As explained in John Baldoni’s, book, Lead With Purpose, Marshall Goldsmith suggests all leaders make it a habit to regularly ask their employees these six questions:

  1. Where do you think we should be going?
  2. Where do you think you and your part of the business should be going?
  3. What do you think you’re doing well?
  4. If you were the leader, what ideas would you have for you?
  5. How can I help?
  6. What suggestions or ideas do you have for me?

The Golden Rules Of Effective Communication

In Communication, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Management on September 20, 2017 at 9:11 am

Here are the 12 golden rules of effective communication from Paul Falcone, as highlighted in his book, 2600 Phrases for Setting Effective Performance Goals.

Always remember to:

  1. Recognize achievements and accomplishments often.
  2. Celebrate success.
  3. Deliver bad news quickly, constructively, and in a spirit of professional development.
  4. Praise in public, censure in private.
  5. Assume responsibility for problems when things go wrong, and provide immediate praise and recognition to others when things go right.
  6. Create a work environment based on inclusiveness, welcoming others’ suggestions and points of view.
  7. Listen actively, making sure that your people feel heard and understood and have a voice in terms of offering positive suggestions in the office or on the shop floor.
  8. Share information openly (to the extent possible) so that staff members understand the Why behind your reasoning and can ask appropriate questions as they continue along in their own path of career development and learning.
  9. Remember that thankfulness and appreciation are the two most important values you can share with our employees and teach them to live by: make them the core foundation of your culture.
  10. Put others’ needs ahead of your own and expect them to respond in kind (a.k.a. “selfless leadership,” otherwise known as “servant leadership”).
  11. When dealing with others’ shortcomings, always err on the side of compassion.
  12. Solicit ongoing feedback and suggestions form your team in terms of how you could do things differently, thereby stimulating creativity and innovation.

How To Communicate In Eight Seconds

In Communication, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership on August 30, 2017 at 2:42 pm

According to a 2015 Microsoft study, the average attention span for us ever-scattered humans is now shorter that a goldfish’s; eight seconds. So, how do you stand out? How do you communicate effectively? How do you not waste time?

Paul Hellman answers these questions and gives you 100 fast and actionable tactics to make your eights seconds meaningful. It’s all in his new book, You’ve Got 00:00:08 Seconds.

He teaches you three key ingredients:

  1. Focus: How to say less with more meaning.
  2. Variety: How to stand out as slightly different.
  3. Presence. How to be notable and boost your reputation.

Paul Hellman

His tactics will serve you well in all these types of situations:

  • Making presentations
  • Interviewing
  • Emailing
  • Networking
  • Storytelling
  • Leaving voice mail

Here are some of my favorite takeaways from Hellman’s book:

  • In one-to-one conversations, talk less than the other person. Ask at least one thought-provoking question per conversation.
  • In meetings, speak in 30-60 second bites. Provide the headline news first, with details later, and only give details if asked. You’ll be surprised by how much you can say in 30 seconds.
  • When presenting, slim down to 10 PowerPoint slides or less.

And, if you really want to Own the Room when presenting, Hellman recommends you:

  1. Avoid the podium.
  2. Move.
  3. When you get a question, step forward toward the audience.
  4. Keep your hands in front of your body.
  5. Gesture.
  6. Look at individuals.
  7. Speak louder (as though the room were twice as large and you wanted to be heard).
  8. Speak as though your message matters.

The Six Questions Leaders Should Ask Employees

In Employee Engagement, Employee Feedback, Employee Retention, Employee Satisfaction, Engaging Employees, Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Leadership on August 20, 2017 at 9:35 am

As explained in John Baldoni‘s, book, Lead With PurposeMarshall Goldsmith suggests all leaders make it a habit to regularly ask their employees these six questions:

  1. Where do you think we should be going?
  2. Where do you think you and your part of the business should be going?
  3. What do you think you’re doing well?
  4. If you were the leader, what ideas would you have for you?
  5. How can I help?
  6. What suggestions or ideas do you have for me?

Ask For Help

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Skills on August 15, 2017 at 5:09 am

If you are new to managing, or if you are struggling with a management dilemma, ask for help. There is no shame in asking for help.

Seek the guidance of a colleague at work. Reach out to a mentor at or away from work. Turn to an online resource. Consult a book on managing.

Whatever you do, don’t sit back and do nothing. Managing even one employee can be challenging. And many managers receive little or no formal training on how to be a manager. That means you have to be proactive about learning how to be a good manager.

Your team is depending on you, and to lead them effectively you need to know to how manage effectively. So, ask for help.

How To Be A Manager With Class

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Books on July 26, 2017 at 4:59 am

AMACOM’s (of the American Management Association) sixth edition of the best-selling book, The First-Time Manager — originally published in 1981 is a must-read for new managers and leaders in business.

One of my favorite sections of the book is the one about class in a manager:

  • Class is treating people with dignity.
  • Class does not have to be the center of attention.
  • Class does not lose its cool.
  • Class does not rationalize mistakes.
  • Class is good manners.
  • Class means loyalty to one’s staff.
  • Class recognizes the best way to build oneself is to first build others.
  • Class leads by example.
  • Class does not taken action when angry.
  • Class is authentic and works hard at making actions consistent with words.

Leadership Quotes From, Just Listen

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Books, Leadership Quotes on July 17, 2017 at 6:19 am

Here are some terrific quotes from Mark Goulston‘s book, Just Listen:

  • Good management is the art of making problems so interesting and their solutions so constructive that everyone wants to get to work and deal with them. — Paul Hawken
  • Life is mostly a matter of perception and more often misperception. — Dave Logan
  • Everyone has an invisible sign hanging from their next saying, “Make me feel important.” — Mary Kay Ash
  • Do the unexpected. The expected is boring.  The expected is tuned out. — Steve Strauss
  • Humility is the surest sign of strength. — Thomas Merton
  • Your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. — Bill Gates
  • The secret of getting ahead is getting started. — Agatha Christie
  • Don’t find fault.  Find a remedy. — Henry Ford

How To Run A Meeting

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Meetings on July 11, 2017 at 9:49 am

Here are some great tips from authors Michael Mankins and Eric Garton about how to run meetings that work:

  • Be sure a meeting is appropriate. Meetings are great for gathering input and coming to a group decision. They aren’t so good for drafting a strategy document, for example. Ensure a meeting is the best way to get the job done.
  • Set a clear — and selective — agenda. A clear agenda communicates priorities. It also tells people what they can safely postpone or ignore.
  • Insist on advance preparation.
  • Practice good meeting hygiene. Start on time. Clarify the purpose of every meeting. Spell out people’s roles in decisions. Create a decision log that captures every decision made in a meeting.
  • End early, particularly if the meeting is going nowhere.

Mankins and Garton are the authors of the book, Time, Talent, Energy.

16 Ways To Build Trust

In Building Trust, Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Books, Trust Building on July 2, 2017 at 10:40 am

You can’t lead if your employees, team or followers don’t trust you.

Building trust takes energy, effort and constant attention to how you act.

To help build trust, follow these 16 tips, recommended by author Susan H. Shearouse:

  1. Be honest
  2. Keep commitments and keep your word
  3. Avoid surprises
  4. Be consistent with your mood
  5. Be your best
  6. Demonstrate respect
  7. Listen
  8. Communicate
  9. Speak with a positive intent
  10. Admit mistakes
  11. Be willing to hear feedback
  12. Maintain confidences
  13. Get to know others
  14. Practice empathy
  15. Seek input from others
  16. Say “thank you”

How To Be An Open Leader

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Open Leader, Open Leadership, Uncategorized on June 24, 2017 at 6:42 am


Open Leadership author Charlene Li reminds leaders to periodically ask themselves these “open leadership skills assessment” questions:

  1. Do I seek out and listen to different points of view?
  2. Do I make myself available to people at all levels of the organization?
  3. Do I actively manage how I am authentic?
  4. Do I encourage people to share information?
  5. Do I publicly admit when I am wrong?
  6. Do I update people regularly?
  7. Do I take the time to explain how decisions are being made?

Thanks for these great questions, Charlene!

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