Eric Jacobson

Posts Tagged ‘Eric Jacobson On Leadership’

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 Stay Motivated

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Motivation on August 12, 2017 at 5:07 am

To learn how to stay motivated, read High-Profit Prospecting, by Mark Hunter. It’s a powerful read that includes counterintuitive advice and cutting-edge best practices for sales prospecting in today’s business world.

Today, I share one of my favorite sections of the book where Hunter describes his seven things motivated people do to stay motivated:

  1. Motivated people ignore voices in their lives. These might be people in the office and friends who have bad attitudes. They’re out there, and if you’re not careful, they’ll control you, too.
  2. Motivated people associate with highly motivated people. Just as there are negative people in the world, there are also positive people. Your job is to make sure you spend as much time with the positive people as possible.
  3. Motivated people simply look for the positive in things. Positive people count it an honor to live each day, learn from others, and impact positively those they meet. Positive people take great satisfaction in helping others achieve success.
  4. Motivated people don’t worry about what they can’t control, but are quick to accept control of their worlds. They don’t pass the buck to someone else, but are willing to be accountable in everything.
  5. Motivated people are continuously learning. The benefit of the learning they do each day is how they use it to improve themselves even more.
  6. Motivated people know there will be tough times, but they know tough times don’t last. They’re aware they need to stay focused on the solution, not the problem. Motivated people always view things in a longer time frame than negative people, who dwell on the negativity of the moment they’re in.
  7. Motivated people set goals and are focused on achieving them, and along the way they celebrate each positive step. The goals they set are designed to both motivate them and drive them to higher levels of success than others might achieve.

Exit Interview Questions

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Eric Jacobson On Corporate Culture, Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Exit Interviews on July 20, 2017 at 3:11 am

As a leader, it’s critical that you understand the real reasons employees leave your company. To do that, you need to ask specific questions that may not be ones you currently include in your exit interviews.

Fortunately, Richard Finnegan, shares in his book, Rethinking Retention in Good Times and Badfour key questions you should include in your exit interviews:

  1. Why did you decide to leave us?
  2. Of all the things you’ve told me, what is the top thing that caused you to resign?
  3. It’s great that you’ve found such a good opportunity, but why did you look?
  4. What one thing could we have done that would have caused you to stay?

Your goal is to learn the most important leave reason rather than learn which three or five things contributed to your employee’s decision to leave. The four questions above will help you learn the most important reason.

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

Make Decisions

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Making Decisions on July 13, 2017 at 8:46 am

A manager who can’t make a decision or who can’t make a timely decision will frustrate his/her employees. Equally bad, a lack of decision will impede the progress of the manager’s team.

Some managers make endless requests for data as a way to postpone their having to make a decision. Employees end up spinning in circles, slicing and dicing the information far beyond what is truly needed for the manager to make a decision.

Some managers are simply afraid to make a decision in fear of making a “wrong” decision. These managers don’t necessarily request needless data, but simply just never decide.

Successful managers gather the data from their employees, make any truly necessary follow-up requests (probing beyond what their employee may have researched/gathered on their own), and then make their decision…knowing that in virtually all cases most decisions are not black and white “right or “wrong,” but are the best decisions made at that time for the current circumstances.

Good managers know that most decisions can be tweaked along the way as their teams carry out their tasks impacted by the decision.

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.

How To Be A Perceptive Listener

In Eric Jacobson Leadership, Leadership Skills, Listening Skills on July 5, 2017 at 7:48 am

“Perceptive listening requires you to be totally focused, completely mindful, and perceptive of the conversation — about what is spoken and what remains unspoken,” explains John Jantsch, author of the book, Duct Tape Selling.

He adds, “Perceptive listening reveals things that a distracted or even mostly active conversation can’t reveal.”

To be a perceptive listener, ensure you hear and interpret the words as they’re said, and also consider what the person isn’t saying. What they might really be thinking, and how they are acting as they speak.

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!

Identifying Emerging Talent

In Eric Jacobson On Leadership, Leadership, Leadership Books, Talent on June 20, 2017 at 5:58 pm

From the book, Mastering the Challenges of Leading Change, comes this useful checklist from author H. James Dallas for how to identify and develop emerging talent in your company/organization.

Dallas recommends that each question should be graded on a scale of 1 to 3, with 3 being the best. Use the questions and the scoring for you and your employee to work together toward the highest ratings across the board.

  1. Has the person demonstrated a “getting lost with confidence” mind-set?
  2. Does the person communicate with authenticity?
  3. Has the person created a strong personal brand that is recognized by colleagues of all levels?
  4. Does the person know his or her blind spots and have people watching to prevent him or her from crashing?
  5. Is the person getting exposure to executive management?
  6. Does the person seek out and seriously consider advice?
  7. Is the person building an inclusive team and sponsoring others?
  8. Is the person proactive in finding opportunities to initiate and lead change?
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