Eric Jacobson

Archive for the ‘Setting Goals’ Category

The Five Elements For Goal Setting

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Goal Setting, Setting Goals on June 3, 2016 at 11:15 am

“The more specific you can be about your goal, the greater your level of success will be,” explain authors Tom Pandola and James W. Bird, in their book, Light A Fire Under Your Business.

“This is because once we have visualized something that doesn’t yet exist, it causes our subconscious mind to make the decisions necessary to make that visualized goal a reality.”

The authors explain that all goals must have these five elements:

  1. Goals must clarify a specific action or outcome.
  2. Goals must be measureable by being able to quantify the benefits of achieving them.
  3. Goals should be achievable with the resources available (or at least you should know that the necessary resources are in reserve and can be acquired).
  4. Goals must also be realistic for achieving based on your particular situation.
  5. Goals must also include the time period in which you want to achieve them. With a date or time period specified for completion, planning can be established in order for evaluating the progress toward goal achievement, something that can be measured and quantified.

How To Set Goals

In Goal Setting, Setting Goals on October 19, 2015 at 5:26 am

If you had trouble maintaining your New Year’s resolutions, it may be time to start thinking about how you’ll set your goals for 2016. Here are seven tips for goal setting from two-time U.S. Olympian Alan Culpepper (from the November 2013 issue of Competitor magazine).

Here are his seven tips for setting goals, whether are your workplace or away-from-work goals:

  1. Be clear and specific about what it is you are trying to accomplish.
  2. Set intermediate goals that complement a long-term goal.
  3. Shoot high, but recognize the importance of a natural progression.
  4. Write your goals down.
  5. Review your goals periodically.
  6. Remind yourself often why you are working on your goal.
  7. And, remember even if you don’t hit your goal, there is satisfaction the process.

How To Create SMART Goals

In Setting Goals on May 12, 2015 at 6:20 am

Too often, businesses don’t have clearly defined goals and even less often specific plans to reach those goals.

When you set a goal for your business, be sure it is SMART:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-related

Share that goal with your employees, so they understand all of the five attributes of the goal.

And then for your plan (sometimes called “program”), keep these tips in mind:

  • Realistically assess the obstacles and resources involved and then create a strategy for navigating that reality.  For me this year, that meant adjusting my race schedule this summer to accommodate a nagging hamstring injury.
  • Plan for more than just willpower.  Instead, plan by taking into consideration your business environment, your employees’ schedules and workload, and everyone’s accountability so that all these factors will work together to support you to achieve your goal.

7 Tips For Setting Goals

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Goal Setting, Setting Goals on March 19, 2015 at 5:08 pm

If you’ve had a lapse in maintaining your New Year’s resolutions, it may be time to set a new goal for yourself.  Here are seven tips for goal setting from two-time U.S. Olympian Alan Culpepper (from the November 2013 issue of Competitor magazine).

Here are his seven tips for setting goals, whether are your workplace or away-from-work goals:

  1. Be clear and specific about what it is you are trying to accomplish.
  2. Set intermediate goals that complement a long-term goal.
  3. Shoot high, but recognize the importance of a natural progression.
  4. Write your goals down.
  5. Review your goals periodically.
  6. Remind yourself often why you are working on your goal.
  7. And, remember even if you don’t hit your goal, there is satisfaction the process.

Tips For Setting Goals

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Goal Setting, Setting Goals on September 7, 2014 at 8:59 am

Some of the best advice I’ve ever found about goal-setting is from two-time U.S. Olympian Alan Culpepper, as published the November 2013 issue of Competitor magazine.

Here are his seven tips for setting goals, whether are your workplace or away-from-work goals:

  1. Be clear and specific about what it is you are trying to accomplish.
  2. Set intermediate goals that complement a long-term goal.
  3. Shoot high, but recognize the importance of a natural progression.
  4. Write your goals down.
  5. Review your goals periodically.
  6. Remind yourself often why you are working on your goal.
  7. And, remember even if you don’t hit your goal, there is satisfaction the process.

How To Set Effective Goals

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Setting Goals on February 9, 2014 at 7:43 am

Eric Jacobson Leadership

If you are a leader who has had a lapse in maintaining your New Year’s resolutions, it may be time to set a new goal for yourself.  Here are seven tips for goal setting from two-time U.S. Olympian Alan Culpepper (from the November 2013 issue of Competitor magazine).

Here are his seven tips for setting goals, whether are your workplace or away-from-work goals:

  1. Be clear and specific about what it is you are trying to accomplish.
  2. Set intermediate goals that complement a long-term goal.
  3. Shoot high, but recognize the importance of a natural progression.
  4. Write your goals down.
  5. Review your goals periodically.
  6. Remind yourself often why you are working on your goal.
  7. And, remember even if you don’t hit your goal, there is satisfaction the process.

For more information about leadership from Eric Jacobson.

Book Review: Change-friendly Leadership

In Company Culture, Corporate Culture, Effective Communications, Employee Satisfaction, Engaging Employees, Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, General Leadership Skills, Leadership, Leadership Books, Leadership Education, Leadership Quotes, Leadership Skills, Leadership Training, Leading By Example, Management, Motivating Employees, Setting Goals, Team Building on November 18, 2012 at 10:27 am

Because Dr. Rodger Dean Duncan delivers so much timely, straight-forward and relevant wisdom in his new book, Change-friendly Leadership, reading it is like talking with your trusted best friend. Or, listening to your favorite teacher.  Or, soaking in the thoughts from your respected mentor.

That’s why you’ll want to spend plenty of time reading the book.  Reflecting on the messages.  Absorbing the discussion,  And, then likely re-reading it.  Or, at least certain sections.

Duncan demonstrates in the book how humanness, approachability, and friendliness are necessary but often overlooked elements of making change successful in an organization.

He teaches leaders the foundation for effectively engaging people’s heads, hearts and hopes — all necessary to enable effective and lasting (sustainable) change in today’s constantly changing world.  Duncan refers to this as leading the whole person.

According to Duncan:

  • Change must accommodate people’s feelings–feelings that involve trust, confidence, passion, and all those other intangible but very real things that make us human.

Duncan’s change-friendly leadership approach includes knowing how to leverage the Champions, Agents, Sponsors and Targets within your organization.  And, how to combine tough love elements into the process while always operating from a platform of respect and caring, not intimidation and contention.

Readers will appreciate the “Bonus Points” offerings at the end of each major section of the book where they learn how to access free white papers, diagnostic tools, videos and other items by going to a URL or using a QR code via their Smart phone.

You’ll also likely enjoy as I did all the great leadership quotes sprinkled throughout the book, such as these:

  • Losing good people is costly.  But the number one most expensive thing that can happen to your organization is for your best and most capable people to quit and stay.
  • It’s often the stress that people resist, not the change itself.
  • A transactional leader focuses on routine and regimented activities.  A transformational leader focuses primarily on initiating and “managing” change.
  • It is not the strongest of the species that survive, not the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change — Charles Darwin.
  • The key to change is to let go of fear — Roseanne Cash
  • Amateurs practice until they get it right.  Professionals practice until they can’t get it wrong.

Thanks to Cave Henricks for sending me an advance copy of the book.

Book Review: Practice Perfect

In Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, General Leadership Skills, Leadership, Leadership Books, Leadership Education, Leadership Skills, Leadership Training, Management, Setting Goals, Team Building on October 23, 2012 at 9:06 pm

42 Rules For Getting Better At Getting Better is the sub-title of the new book, Practice Perfect.

This is an interesting book because it is co-authored by three teachers and clearly it’s a book for and about teachers.

But, as the authors remind us, as leaders, we are also teachers.  And, that’s why Practice Perfect is a valuable read for everyone who wants to help their employees grow and excel through practice.

And, although there’s a handy three-page summary of the 42 rules toward the end of the book, take the time to read about each rule covered in the chapters:

  • Rethinking Practice
  • How To Practice
  • Using Modeling
  • Feedback
  • Culture of Practice
  • Post-Practice: Making New Skills Stick

Key lessons and takeaways for me from the book include the following tips for providing effective feedback when working with someone who is practicing a skill:

  • Correct instead of critique.
  • Ask participants to redo an action differently or better rather than just telling them whether or how it could have been different.
  • Focus on the solution rather than the problem.
  • Give feedback right away, even if it’s imperfect.
  • Remember that a simple and small change, implemented the right away, can be more effective than a complex rewiring of a skill.

Additional advice from the authors is that:

  • The more consistently you give and get feedback, the more normal it is.
  • What people do right is as important in practice as what they do wrong.
  • Coaching during a game/exercise can be helpful, but teaching during a game/exercise is distracting and counterproductive.

Practice Perfect‘s authors are Doug Lemov, Katie Yezzi and Erica Woolway.  Lemov’s previous book is Teach Like a Champion.

Finally, the book is packed with stories of practice masters like Coach John Wooden, surgeon Atul Gawande, and basketball star Michael Jordan.

Thanks to the book publisher for sending me an advance copy of the book.

When To Coach And When To Counsel

In Coaching, Effective Communications, Employee Engagement, General Leadership Skills, Leadership, Leadership Books, Leadership Education, Leadership Skills, Leadership Training, Management, Mentoring, Setting Goals, Uncategorized on March 28, 2012 at 7:35 pm

A good manager is both a coach and a counselor.  Generally, coaching should precede counseling.

As a coach,a manager:

  • identifies an employee’s need for instruction and direction

and this need is usually directly related to his or her performance or career goals.  Coaching is collaborative. It relies on mutual, progressive goal-setting, personal feedback, and an ongoing, supportive relationship.

You coach to help retain employees and to show you care about your employees as individuals.  It’s best to coach when a new procedure is introduced, a job is changed, and/or a skill gap is identified.

As a counselor, a manager:

  • first identifies a problem that interferes with an employee’s work performance and then helps the employee to define specifically what behavior he or she needs to change in order to improve his or her performance or resolve a problem.

So, the difference between coach and counselor is subtle, but important.  And, as Sharon Armstrong further shares in her book, “The Essential HR Handbook,” a good manager who is both a coach and a counselor:

  • Motivates employees to do good work
  • Reinforces good performance
  • Encourages employees to stretch
  • Sets clear expectations
  • Provides positive feedback on an ongoing basis
  • Provides constructive feedback on a timely basis
  • Acknowledges employees’ progress toward their goals

Brad Hams’ Ownership Thinking Books Strives To Eradicate Entitlement In The Workplace

In Company Culture, Employee Retention, Engaging Employees, General Leadership Skills, Leadership, Leadership Books, Leadership Education, Leadership Skills, Leadership Training, Marketing, Motivating Employees, Setting Goals on March 11, 2012 at 7:49 am

Entitlement is “killing your business,” says author Brad Hams.  

And after more than 15 years working with hundreds of companies, Hams says he knows “that the vast majority of employees addicted to entitlement actually want to engage, want to contribute, and feel much better about themselves when they are in an environment that requires them to do so.”

Hams takes a no holds barred approach in his new book, Ownership Thinking — How to End Entitlement and Create a Culture of Accountability, Purpose and Profit.

He believes that:

  • Roughly 8 percent of potential profit may be falling through the cracks in your company if you suffer from a culture of entitlement

Ownership Thinking is a provocative read for leaders within an organization and for every level generation of employees who are guided by those leaders.

“Entitlement has become an enormous problem in our culture, and I’m afraid it’s getting worse with every generation,” says Hams.

In an exclusive interview, Hams answered these questions:

QuestionWhat makes you say that employees actually want to take ownership of their work?

Hams: Perhaps the most tangible answer is the fact that we have implemented Ownership Thinking in over 1,600 companies over the past 16 years, and in nearly every case, employees have become far more engaged in the business, the businesses have become more profitable (and those profits are shared with employees), and employee retention has increased on average by roughly 200 percent.

People are drawn to unearned compensation and security for obvious reasons, but we have learned that they are not happy there.  In part, because dependence on these unearned benefits creates feelings of purposelessness, and ultimately crushes potential.  Employees want to participate, they want to contribute, and they want to benefit from their contributions.

We have also seen that contributors become less tolerant of non-contributors in this environment, creating something of a self-selecting environment.

Question:  Do you think your book will be deemed controversial?

Hams: Perhaps to some.  I believe those people who may be offended are those who have a misguided sense of altruism.  They believe that people are essentially helpless, and must be supported.  I know this is not true.

People are in fact tough, and the vast majority of them can lift themselves up and take care of themselves, and in fact many can do extraordinary things when put in a position where they must take responsibility for themselves.

Providing things for people who in fact could, in fact, obtain these things themselves through work and perseverance, simply exacerbates this unhealthy (and I would say tragic) cycle of purposelessness and dependence.

Question:  For the generation that was protected by their parents, is it fair to say that those children are not at fault that they have an entitlement attitude?

Hams: I don’t care who is at fault.  What I care about is breaking people of this tragic addiction that is preventing them from leading fulfilled and beautiful lives.  Ownership Thinking can do that.

Question: For that entitlement generation now in their adulthood, how do they break out of the mold and clearly demonstrate to employers their buy-in of Ownership Thinking?  What is the best thing they can do?

Hams: Leadership must create the environment for them to do this, I believe.  They can do it by utilizing the core principals of Ownership Thinking:

  • The Right Education: Teaching employees the fundamentals of business and finance, how their company makes money, and how they add (or take away) value.
  • The Right Measures: Identifying the organization’s Key Performance Indicators (with an emphasis on leading, activity-based measures), creating scoreboards, and forecasting results in an environment of high visibility and accountability.
  • The Right Incentives: Creating broad-based incentive plans that are self-funding (by virtue of the first two components), and that clearly align employees’ behavior to the organization’s business and financial objectives.
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