New eBook - Enterprise Social Media: 5 Ways to Maximize Trust and Master Social Media on the Inside

Posted by David Grossman on Mon,Apr 20, 2015

In the world of internal communications, few tools have enhanced the way employees learn and interact, as much as social media.  No matter where I travel, leaders and communicators wonder the same thing:

When it comes to social media, are we doing enough at our company to keep up?

Enterprise_Social_Media_eBook

My new eBook, Enterprise Social Media: 5 Ways to Maximize Trust and Master Social Media on the Inside, offers some lessons on deploying Enterprise Social Media (ESM) in ways that resonate with employees and leaders alike.  Using these strategies ESM can help your company foster meaningful dialogue that can drive measurable business outcomes.

This eBook elaborates on the following 5 lessons for successful internal social media:

Social Media Is Not a Magic Bullet.

It’s true that ESM can enhance the way information flows inside an organization.  But on their own, they can’t create dialogue & engagement out of thin air.

Be Curators and Docents.

Companies have a false sense that ESM tools are completely user driven.  You must have a hand in assembling shareable content & become guides and interpreters of it

Yes Virginia, There Is an ROI.

Companies that put a premium on ESM conversations have a higher likelihood of turning employees into brand ambassadors.

Hockey Pucks and Subways.

Communicators need to anticipate where their key stakeholders are headed, not where they’ve been.  This is important in order to proactively anticipate their needs and preferences.

Leadership (Still) Matters Most.

Online tools alone can never bridge any pre-existing gaps in leadership communications and outreach.  Far more important is the leadership behaviors that compromise effective communications.

By reading this eBook, you’ll gain the knowledge to avoid some of the most common pitfalls I’ve seen when companies forge ahead without an engagement strategy and an aligned set of social media objectives. 

Download—Enterprise Social Media: 5 Ways to Maximize Trust and Master Social Media on the Inside—and set your company up for sustainable online success.

Tags: Free Downloads

Weekly Round-Up: 7 Skills to Be a More Influential Leader, Stress Management Techniques & How to Simplify the Way We Work

Posted by David Grossman on Fri,Apr 17, 2015

Welcome to my weekly round-up of top leadership and communication blog posts. As many of you know, each week I read and tweet several great articles and on Fridays, I pull some of my favorites together here on my blog.

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This week you’ll see articles on finding your leadership sweet spot, why it’s important to also learn from your success as much as your failures and effective stress management techniques.  These articles will provide you with tips, strategies and thought-starters from many of the smart folks in my network. So whether you’re a new leader or an industry veteran there’ll be something here for you.

  • 7 Skills to Be a More Influential Leader
    By Dr. Karen Keller (@KarenKeller), Switch & Shift
    We’ve all seen it. Someone gets up to speak at a conference or team meeting, and people reach for their cell phones to check email, and another person gets up to speak and the room sits, completely captivated.  There are those…
  • How to Simplify the Way We Work
    By Tanveer Naseer (@TanveerNaseer)
    After the tough winter season most of us have had this year, it’s understandable that many of us are eager for Springtime weather to finally take hold so we might once again enjoy a warm sun under blue skies…”
  • How to Find Your Leadership Sweet Spot
    By Lee Colan (@LeeColan), Inc.
    Most types of sports equipment--a golf club, a tennis racquet, a baseball bat--have a specific spot that, if the ball hits it, will give the player the optimal result. Hitting this sweet spot yields a long drive down the fairway…”
  • Why You Should Question Success Just as Much as Failure
    By Laura Vanderkam (@lvanderkam), Fast Company
    Success and failure are very different concepts, but they’ve got something in common: Both are often missed opportunities. No one likes to fail.  Organizations tend to treat falling sales or slow product launches as…”
  • 11 Effective Stress Management Techniques for Leaders
    By When I Work (@wheniwork)
    Small business owners may just be the hardest and longest working people in our economy.  You understand why you’re stressed.  The life of a small business owner is tough.  There’s the unpredictable…”

                                                                                                  

What were some of the top leadership articles you read this week?

-          David Grossman 

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 Learn from real-life scenarios how to deliver effective communications to your employees. Check out our Take5 ™ to Communicate Well e-Learning course!

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Tags: Weekly Round-Up

Five Strategies for Engaging Millennials

Posted by David Grossman on Tue,Apr 14, 2015

“If you want happiness for a lifetime – help the next generation.”   –Chinese Proverb

Engaging_Millennial_Employees

I'd like to offer some strategies for engaging Millennials, who work a little differently than the current workforce and respond better to certain types of communication.

Consider using these 5 strategies that are key to their engagement:

Start Millennials off strong in the workplace.

Studies suggest that millennial workers decide on the first day whether they will stay with an organization long-term. Engage them at the beginning with a solid understanding of the organization by sharing its history, mission, vision, and values. If Millennials believe in the company and feel aligned with its mission, they will feel instantly connected. 

Encourage and foster creativity.

Millennials aren’t shy about wanting an interesting, dynamic, creative and above all, fun working environment.  They look for workplaces that have creative communication, open working environments, technology and flexibility. 

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Make sure Millennials are challenged.

Millennials have high expectations of themselves and aren’t afraid to make mistakes as they learn by doing. Giving them the opportunity to build their experience will pay off in increased capability as it shapes the next generation of leaders.

Coaching goes a long way.

Motivated and open to feedback, Millennials are eager to do well and easy to coach.  They want to hear from managers often about their progress throughout the course of the month – or even week. If you catch a Millennial regressing, approach that time as an opportunity for learning.  They want to know where they can improve to become the star employees they strive to be. 

Chart a career path.

Millennials need to know where they fit and where they can advance in the organization. Establish goals and expectations to help them set their sights on career opportunities. Letting Millennials know there is room for them to grow in the organization over time will engage them and help them reach their goals and yours.

Engaging Millennials is all about understanding them, and what makes them tick.

What more can you learn about your Millennial workers that can help you leverage their talent and energy?

- David Grossman

Originally ran March 2011

Leave Email at the Office This Spring Break

Posted by David Grossman on Tue,Apr 07, 2015

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I’ve turned off my email again this vacation.  How about you?

It worked on my last break – once I got past the initial angst.  It was hugely liberating, and allowed me to focus on what was most important – quality time with my family and re-charging.

It’s worked on my last few breaks – once I got past the initial angst.  It was hugely liberating, and allowed me to focus on what was most important – quality time with my family and re-charging.

I’m bringing with me, the Email-Free Vacation Pledge, as a reminder that time with my family is important and that email can wait.  Cold turkey might not work for everyone, but you never know until you commit to it, and try.

Do you have a vacation coming up?  Make it email-free with the Email-Free Vacation Pledge.

Get the Email-Free Vacation Pledge

What are your plans to step away from email this Spring Break? 

-David Grossman

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Download, the 10 Dos and Dont's of Email Tip Sheet below, and get the steps you need to take back control of email in your organization.

10 dos donts email tip sheet

 

Tags: Email In The Workplace

Weekly Round-Up: 7 Ways Improvisation will Enhance Your Leadership, How to Create a Healthy Workplace Culture & 4 Reasons You Aren’t Getting the Feedback You Need

Posted by David Grossman on Fri,Apr 03, 2015

WeeklyRoundUp_Image

Welcome to my weekly round-up of top leadership and communication blog posts. As many of you know, each week I read and tweet several great articles and on Fridays, I pull some of my favorites together here on my blog.

This week you’ll see articles on the habits of highly persistent people, ways to create a healthy workplace culture in your organization and amazing secrets of the most successful leaders.  These articles will provide you with tips, strategies and thought-starters from many of the smart folks in my network. So whether you’re a new leader or an industry veteran there’ll be something here for you.

  • 7 Ways Improvisation Will Enhance Your Leadership
    By Stacey Mason, Switch & Shift
    Nearly 10 years ago a pivotal book by author Daniel Pink (A Whole New Mind) suggested that forces in the world economy would shift society from left-brain thinking to right-brain thinking as the dominant thought pattern. In retrospect…
  • 7 Habits of Highly Persistent People
    By Harvey Deutschendorf, Fast Company
    In any discussion of the attributes of successful people, persistence is always mentioned, often as the, or one of the, most important factors in success.  Major success seldom comes easily or without…”
  • How to Create a Healthy Workplace Culture
    By Mike Miles, SmartBlog on Leadership
    When we think about the makeup of a workplace, tangible aspects often come to mind: location, office space, number of employees, revenue. However, certain intangibles are just as much a part of a company’s identity. Workplace culture tops this list…”
  • 4 Reasons You’re Not Getting the Feedback You Need
    By Karin Hurt, Lead Change Group
    He oozed with confidence as he shared his techniques and stories. I wrote down most of what he said. Until…his next words, which turned my attitude of respect to annoyance.’Oh, I never look at…”
  • 10 Amazing Secrets of Happy and Successful Leaders
    By Lolly Daskal, Inc.
    We talk about happiness as if it were a thing to be discovered and acquired.  But happiness can never be found externally. It is not a possession to be acquired or a set of conditions, but a state of mind…”

                                                                                                  

What were some of the top leadership articles you read this week?

-          David Grossman 

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Tags: Weekly Round-Up

Employee Engagement and the Communicator’s Role

Posted by David Grossman on Tue,Mar 31, 2015

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Achieving trust, credibility and especially engagement is the ultimate prize for employers, now more than ever.  Communications and communicators play a key role in the engagement process. Great communication can engage employees if it cuts through the clutter to speak directly to them, and no one is better positioned than communicators to know how to connect effectively with employees.

First, employers and communicators must recognize that employee engagement is a two-way street, and furthermore that engagement is a gift an employee gives to an organization—that can be freely given or withheld at any time. It is up to these leaders to accept responsibility for (as they will reap the benefits of) making it that way.

Next, decision makers need to realize that engaged employees need more than just information. They need face-to-face communication and dialogue.

Communication professionals are at the heart of all of this interaction. It is up to them to facilitate communication between leaders and employees, and within individual teams. Yes, communication is everyone’s responsibility, but it’s up to the communicators to drive awareness and engagement.

Engagement is the degree to which workers feel an emotional connection with their employer and organization that allows them to identify with, be motivated by, and be willing to expend extra effort for their employers (e.g., extra time, brainpower, or energy).

It also leads to an employee’s willingness to advocate on behalf of the organization and brand. The sad fact is that overall employees aren’t very engaged. This has a negative impact on productivity, results, shareholder value and many other aspects of the business.

According to the 2012 Gallup Employee Engagement Index, about one third of all employees globally are engaged, nearly 20% are actively disengaged and the rest—just about half—are on the fence. Our greatest opportunity exists in our ability to help those individuals who are on the fence to be more engaged, and to keep already-engaged employees committed (they’re the ones driving the business). Imagine the impact if we could get 5 percent, 10 percent, or even more from “on the fence” to engaged? What might that mean in productivity and results?

You may not realize it, but you’re actually engaging employees every time you:

• Help them understand the realities of your business.

• Connect the dots between the big picture of your business and what it means to them and their job.

• Reinforce that they can trust you.

• Ask for their thoughts and feedback.

• Ask how they are doing.

If engagement merely facilitated a more efficient working environment or a friendlier atmosphere, the business imperative to make it a priority wouldn’t be as compelling. But the extra effort, the willingness to act as a champion and to advocate for your organization, the desire to provide value every minute of the day makes engaging employees a critical success factor for any business.

What can you start doing today to increase your employee engagement?

- David Grossman

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Get the skinny on what it takes to create an organization with engaged employees.  Download, Improve Your Workplace Diet, by clicking the image below.

Improve Your Workplace Diet: Simple Yet Powerful Ingredients To Cook Up Great Results

Tags: Employee Engagement, Face-to-Face Communication

Weekly Round-Up: The Case for Being a Generous Leader, 5 Tips to Be a More Impressive Speaker & 13 Ways to Re-Energize Your Team

Posted by David Grossman on Fri,Mar 27, 2015

WeeklyRoundUp_Image

Welcome to my weekly round-up of top leadership and communication blog posts. As many of you know, each week I read and tweet several great articles and on Fridays, I pull some of my favorites together here on my blog.

This week you’ll see articles on the best ways to manage both your introverted and extroverted employees, tips to become a better public speaker and why successful leaders focus on giving over getting.  These articles will provide you with tips, strategies and thought-starters from many of the smart folks in my network. So whether you’re a new leader or an industry veteran there’ll be something here for you.

  • The Best Ways to Manage Introvert and Extrovert Employees
    By Top Management Degrees, Switch & Shift
    As leaders, we’re tasked with building teams made up of people with diverse backgrounds, cultures and lifestyles. In today’s global economy, we not only accept this, we embrace the diversity…
  • 13 Ways to Re-Energize Your Team
    By Young Entrepreneur Council, SmartBlog on Leadership
    One of the best things about running a marathon is hitting that finish line, which everyone participating knows is 26.2 miles away. Likewise, make sure your team knows where your finish line is, and what they’ll get for crossing it…”
  • The Case for Being a Generous Leader
    By Tim Stevens, Fast Company
    In my first job out of high school, when I was barely 18 years old, I had one of the best bosses out there. Lewie had no reason to give me special attention. He had no reason to be interested in my success. Yet over and over again, he…”
  • 5 Tips to Be a More Impressive Speaker
    By Jessica Stillman, Inc.
    If you're a shaky public speaker, your next big presentation offers so many things to be worried about. There's conceiving of and planning your speech, practicing it, keeping your nerves in check, actually presenting it, and dealing with audience…”
  • Why Successful Leaders Focus on Giving over Getting
    By Tanveer Naseer
    One of the wonderful benefits of our digital age is not only how we’re able to discover the talent and artistry of people we might have otherwise overlooked, but also how we’re now able to peek behind the curtain to learn what inspires them; to discover…”

                                                                                                  

What were some of the top leadership articles you read this week?

-          David Grossman 

___________

Download, the 10 Dos and Don'ts of Email Tip Sheet below, and get the steps you need to take back control of email in your organization.

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Tags: Weekly Round-Up

Let Them Eat Cake: The Value of Celebration

Posted by David Grossman on Wed,Mar 25, 2015

15yr

“The more you praise and celebrate life, the more there is in life to celebrate.”

-          Oprah Winfrey

This month marks 15 years of being Your Thought Partner at The Grossman Group.  Growing up I never appreciated the significance of milestone birthdays or anniversaries.  Uncle Tom and Aunt Rose’s 25th anniversary party?   My focus was on when we got to eat the cake and go home.  (For those of you who know me well, I am skipping the “have my cake and eat it too” pun here.)

Then I got married and had kids and am the first to celebrate.  Now I get it.  Personal and professional milestones matter.  In a myriad of ways.  Bring on the cake and the streamers and the noise makers and the unicorn piñata, as my oldest daughter Avi requested for her recent 5th birthday.  Pop open the Veuve and hand me a tall glass!

Making it to 5 or 15 or 25 or 50+ – or any number in between, for that matter! – is cause for celebration, appreciation, and reflection.

I’m grateful for the clients who have entrusted us to help during their toughest and everyday defining moments.  I appreciate the amazing team of thought partners who are the best in the business. And, I’m grateful to my family for their love and support, and for understanding that fulfilling my passion often takes me away from them.

This anniversary also is a reminder of the need to celebrate more regularly with the people around us.  To share appreciation and be grateful for what we have.  It’s so powerful – for the person sharing, and for those receiving appreciation.  It’s free, easy to do, yet so often forgotten in the press of business today.

So here’s to you.  Thanks for reading, and for being part of our extended family as we celebrate 15 years.

In what ways are you celebrating both the big and little things with others?

-          David Grossman              

Tags: Announcements

Embrace Conflict and Transform Discomfort For Better Business Results

Posted by David Grossman on Tue,Mar 24, 2015

It’s a paradox that every leader faces: create teams that work well together but embrace conflict. Also, drive consensus but encourage individual points of view. Discomfort is emotional. Feelings can be complex and multi-layered. But stifling expression can inhibit a team’s performance and lead to poor decision making.

Embraceconflict

Here are the top 6 strategies to drive discomfort for better decision-making: 

  1. Make “disagreers” part of your team (but not disruptors).

  2. Maximize team diversity to reap the benefits of differences in experience and thinking. Ensure you have various points of view represented at the table.

  3. Encourage debate, but avoid endless disagreement. Before you make a decision, ensure you have all the points of view on the table. Leave room for passion.

  4. Take on sacred cows, and allow others to do the same.

  5. Consider alternatives. Strategic decision-making is about making choices. To make the best choice, you need alternatives.

  6. Always debrief in the spirit of continuous improvement. Institutionalize the questions, “What worked well?” and “What could we have done better?”

What conflict are you avoiding today, and how might you address it?

- David Grossman

Originally ran June 2012

Tags: Leadership Effectiveness & Planning

Weekly Round-Up: 5 Ways to Move a Culture to a Community, Motivation at Work & The Power of Your Leadership Story

Posted by David Grossman on Fri,Mar 20, 2015

WeeklyRoundUp_Image

Welcome to my weekly round-up of top leadership and communication blog posts. As many of you know, each week I read and tweet several great articles and on Fridays, I pull some of my favorites together here on my blog.

This week you’ll see articles on ways to make your work culture a community, the importance of telling your story as a leader and 10 quotes from the best business books of 2015.  These articles will provide you with tips, strategies and thought-starters from many of the smart folks in my network. So whether you’re a new leader or an industry veteran there’ll be something here for you.

  • The Naked Truth: How to Uncover an Insecure Leader
    By Lolly Daskal, Inc.
    If you've ever worked with an insecure leader, you understand the problem of insecurity--and the damage it can do.  The trick is to discover and intercept the warning signs of insecurity within yourself. It's a necessary effort…”
  • 10 Quotes From the Best Business Books of 2015 (So Far)
    By John Brandon, Inc.
    I'm a voracious reader. I usually have a stack of books in my office and tend to bring a few along on business trips. (If you see me at SxSW this week, I might be reading a book.) For the past two months, I've been reading a few hand-picked business books…
  • 5 Ways to Move a Culture to a Community
    By Jon Mertz, Switch & Shift
    ’At Facebook, Boss Is a Dirty Word’ announces the headline in a recent Wall Street Journal article. Facebook has a majority of Millennials working within their company. The median age is 28. …”
  • The Power of Your Leadership Story
    By Tim Tobin, SmartBlog on Leadership
    Stories have power. They move people in a way that facts and figures can’t. Many leaders use stories as a tool, but most have no idea what tale their own leadership is telling.  By thinking of your career…”
  • Motivation at Work: Six Action Steps for Leaders
    By David Witt, Blanchard LeaderChat
    Recent research into motivation has shown us that, at least in the corporate world, we don’t have the complete story. In their latest column for Training Industry Magazine Ken Blanchard and Scott Blanchard share that typical variations of the carrot .…”

                                                                                                  

What were some of the top leadership articles you read this week?

-          David Grossman 

___________

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    About leadercommunicator blog

    What does it take to be a leadercommunicator?

    The Grossman Group CEO and communications expert David Grossman shares his insights on the importance of meaningful leadership communication in today’s business climate. With high level tips on engagement and connection, insights into employee motivations and behavior, and firsthand stories from the frontlines of America’s leading companies.

    The leadercommunicator blog is instructive, entertaining, and a must-read for leaders, communicators, and leadercommunicators.

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