Ron Shapiro

 

Effective Leadership for Technical Professionals

by Ron Shapiro

It’s no secret that good, effective leaders drive forward a successful business. But what makes a good leader? Technical leaders in particular, including as people working in marketing, finance, and sales, have a specific set of needs.

Effective Leadership for Technical ProfessionalsLeadership Needs for the Technical Workplace

Effective leaders should be the driving force behind achieving business goals and objectives, which requires that they meet a number of business needs.

  • Supporting colleagues. This is the first point on the list for a reason. Business leaders are not just there to crack the whip on their team members. Employees and teammates who feel well supported in their work are going to work harder, as long as the leader balances support with the importance of meeting deadlines and accomplishing goals.
  • Autonomy. In business, employees should have some level of freedom and discretion over the work that they do. Tying in with support, the autonomy awarded to colleagues also means high expectations. Employees who have a lot of free reign over their work also have high responsibility, and it is the leader’s job to motivate and check in. Leaders should also be able to reassess what is and is not working when it comes to employee responsibility.
  • Achievement. Ultimately, the greatest needs of businesses are those of actually meeting business objectives and goals.

Common Leadership Pitfalls

When leaders are ineffective, businesses suffer. But just how much? While it may be obvious that productivity decreases, it’s also true that retention falls short, employees are unengaged, their talents go undeveloped, and time is wasted. What makes for some of these pitfalls? Learn More »

6 Leadership Best Practices: How to Make Sense of the Unfamiliar

by Ron Shapiro

There’s no mistaking the simple fact that leadership styles differ enormously from person to person. There are, however, a number of shared traits that successful, effective leaders 6 Leadership Best Practicespossess. Research has proven that these traits of sense and success are deeply linked to the thriving of effective leaders.

Good leaders are immediately open to new understanding. Leaders do not necessarily understand complex concepts immediately, but they must be open to learning efficiently. Effective leaders are constantly asking themselves how to make sense of something new, and how to do it quickly.

Good leaders create safe spaces. In order to lead effectively, good leaders are warm and welcoming, rather than intimidating or aloof. By allowing room for other people to speak up and share their thoughts, perspectives, and opinions, good leaders can use their inherent executive power to create an empathetic environment that encourages colleagues to approach them with tact and professionalism, knowing that they will be heard.

Good leaders approximate, and this is because they have to. Not every project will provide every single snippet of detail that may normally be considered necessary to move forward, but leaders are able to continue to inspire their colleagues to progress without having all the information. Rather than charging blindly ahead, leaders are able to foresee what effect each step will have, whether or not they have all the information right away. Learn More »

Gaining Trust for New Team Members

by Ron Shapiro

Think about what trust means to you, or to your organization or company. Webster’s Dictionary provides some good keywords: confidence in something or someone else, Gaining Trust for New Team Membersdependence on something in the future, assurance of the character or ability of a person or group of people – ultimately, they will pull through for you.

So with this in mind, what does it actually mean to build trust? Companies that have high-performing team members and work to gain and keep their client partners rely deeply on relationships of trust, both within the employee team and with partners.

In the Office

According to Forbes contributor Glenn Llopis, one of the most powerful components of building trusting relationships is transparency. Transparency means two things in this situation:

  • Teamwork. When leaders are transparent about the team’s strengths and weaknesses, team members are able to work more efficiently. This means that problem solving can be based around what’s actually going on, rather than what people are inferring. New teammates will immediately know what’s going on and be able to bring their whole selves into the work.
  • Consistency. In order to build trust within the office, it’s important to remain consistent. Consistency in this case means treating everyone fairly; it should be a no-brainer, but unfortunately it doesn’t always work out that way. Frequent communication doesn’t just mean letting people know what’s going on, either – remember, it is important to listen to your teammates, too.

What does trust building lead to in the end? Higher performance, according to this Guardian UK article, which is what customers are after. Learn More »

Sharks, Lions, and the Big Bad Wolf – How to Deal with Difficult People

by Ron Shapiro,

Let’s face it, negotiation has a bad reputation. Often an analogy is drawn between negotiating and swimming with the sharks or entering the lion’s den. You could just label all other N.I.C.E. is a philosophy that maps out how to beat them without joining them.bullies, tyrants, and impossible people and lump them together under the title of the Big Bad Wolf. Though I’m no history buff, but I like to rename all impossible people Robespierre, because sometimes dealing with them is like being at the epicenter of the Reign of Terror.

So how do we deal with these sharks, lions, big bad wolves, and Robespierre types? Well Thomas Jefferson thinks it’s as easy as counting, “When I am upset, I count to ten. When I’m very upset, I count to one-hundred.” That may be easy enough but how many times have your reactions mirrored the attitude towards you? Do you yell when yelled at? When someone challenges you, do you accept?  How do we harness these emotions and keep them in check? How can we become better negotiators to avoid becoming a screaming and yelling Big Bad Wolf?

A strategy of intimidation is often the easy way out (the easy and often ineffective way out). To get around this we’ve developed a new approach that answers all of these problematic questions. N.I.C.E. is a philosophy that maps out how to beat them without joining them. Learn More »

 
 
 
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