Month: November 2011

Virtual teams forms and resources

Welcome to the SpeakStrong Virtual Teams resource page. Use these forms with the book Perfect Phrases for Virtual Teamwork. You may share, alter, and refine in any way you choose. We have both Word docs and PDFs available to download. Of course the Word doc is the one you’ll want if you plan to make changes, including removing the SpeakStrong header. 

I’d love your feedback and to hear how you use them. If you change them, I’d appreciate knowing what you change—your adaptations might be useful for other readers. Also, let me know if you have recommendations for other Virtual Teamwork resources. 

 

 

Forms

virtual team forms

Virtual Team Sponsor Best Practices:   Open as a Word Doc    Open as a PDF

Role Matrix Form: Open as a Word Doc   Open as a PDF

Team Meeting Norms  Open as a Word Doc   Open as a PDF

Team Charter Form   Open as a Word Doc  Open as a PDF

Sample Team Charter: Open as a Word Doc    Open as a PDF

Response Times and Availabilty: Open as a Word Doc    Open as a PDF

Voice and Email Norms (Electronic Communication) Open as a Word Doc   Open as a PDF

Team Decision-making Form: Open as a Word Doc     Open as a PDF

  

Sample dashboards: Sales team dashboard, Sales team dashboard 2, Project team dashboard 

Great site on creating and using dashboards: Dashboard Spy

Do you want to process what happened some more?

It’s such a blessing to have people who are able to be completely present when we need to verbally process an experience or emotion. Penny listened with her full attention for over an hour when Mary needed to sort through powerphrase_icon2an experience that took her down (but not out) for a while. They went with their day, but when they reconnected later on Skype, Penny asked,

  • Do you want to process some more?

Mary was sensitive about imposing on Penny, but did want to talk some more. She was very grateful to not have to ask.

What are you courting?

Rhonda posted an interesting article about her speed-dating experience. In ten “dates,” not one man asked her about herself. She has since married a wonderful man, but he triggered her ire when she called home each day while travelling to have Courtship, proposal with flowershim tell her about his day, but never inquire about hers. On day five, Rhonda asked, “Don’t you even want to hear about my day?” He noticed his omission, apologized, inquired about her day, and has been more attentive ever since. A success story? Yes… and

In my way of thinking, if ten men and her wonderful hubby all talk about themselves and don’t think to inquire about her, it might be a trait, not a flaw. If the same men were speed-networking with each other instead of speed-dating with the ladies, chances are the conversation would be balanced even if neither party invited the other to talk about themselves. To get irritated and point out the omission paints it as a flaw, and can set up a dynamic where the men in your life ask you about your day, not because they care, but because they don’t want to tick you off. Personally, I’d rather have a man who rarely asks, than one who asks because he’s afraid of angering me. 

Everything we do courts some kind of relationship dynamic. Getting irritated and confronting someone for not behaving the way we think they should courts rebellion or compliance. Is that what you want? CONTINUED

Parents stuffing their kid’s ballot boxes

I received a few emails from a business associate asking me to vote early and often for his son to win a prize for his entry in a contest. His email said nothing about whether or not we thought his entry merited the prize or not. 

This kind of ballot-stuffing turns competitions from the purpose of the projects to a competition between their parent’s willingness and ability to mobilize support. I checked out the entry and it was very good. But I knew that if I were to vote for the entry, I’d really be voting for the father.

The plea asked for a big favor. The favor asked me to be dishonest, and while I appreciate the love and support that motivated the father, i declined. 

Lean PowerPhrase: How do you want the process to operate?

PowerPhrase IconIf you manage the means instead of the result, a powerful phrase for you is:

  • How do you want the process to operate?

 

Managing by results asks about outcome. What are you trying to accomplish? Managing by means asks about the process that acheives the outcome, and is one of the secrets of Toyota’s competative edge.

You can read more about managing the process here.

SpeakSTRONG Newsletter November 21, 2011


  #404, November 22, 2011 www.speakstrong.com  

Contents:

Surprising motivators

Webinar update

PowerPhrase

“Poison” Phrase

Books by the box

 

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SpeakStrong Newsletter

Surprising motivators

Wendy Mack’s fall newsletter asks: which of the following tools is the most powerful for motivating employees? 

Wendy

1. Support for making progress, 2. Recognition for good work, 3. Incentives, 4. Interpersonal support, 5. Clear goals

If you’re like ninety-five percent of managers, you believe recognition for good work has the most impact on employee motivation. But Harvard University has proven that support for making progress is the greatest motivator, particularly for scientists, engineers, programmers, marketers, and other knowledge workers. Managing by objectives, which puts the focus on outcome misses the opportunities of managing by means (Profit Beyond Measure, Thomas Johnson). Focusing on progress motivates – but requires skill and comes with a warning… continued: read the warning, get the secret and comment

 

Webinar update: do you want to improve your communication skills?

Last week’s webinars were fun, informative, and allowed for a delightful sharing of ideas. You can find the links for the replay and the slides here. I’ve also posted the slides to my slideshare account. If you like them, I’d love to read your comments on slideshare or my blog posts about the presentations. Luna Lovegood and the Top Ten Phrases for Admins, and Communication Kata: The Yes Fast.

I don’t have any webinars scheduled at this time, but am working on it. Stay tuned.

Comment on the Admin webinar

Comment on the Kata webinar

PowerPhrase: Manage the process

If you manage the means instead of the result, a powerful phrase for you is:

• How do you want the process to operate?

Managing by results asks about outcome. What are you trying to accomplish? Managing by means asks about the process that achieves the outcome, and is one of the secrets of Toyota’s competitive edge.

comment

Please, will you adopt me, too?

PowerPhrase IconI just received an email requesting auction items for a fundraiser for a couple to adopt an 11-year-old boy. The tale they tell is that the couple was in the Philippine orphanage to adopt their daughter when the boy came up to them and said,

• Please, will you take me home with you, too? I love America.

He was the oldest child at the orphanage and had watched numerous friends be adopted, leaving him behind. With that ability to make direct requests, I think that young man will do very well in business.

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PowerPhrase: We have good alchemy

What is chemistry in personal relationships can be called alchemy in professional ones.

read the post and comment

“Poison” Phrase: What time?

I’d been trying to find a time to meet with “Darla” and emailed a possible time. My email said:

How about Friday at 12:30?

That was the entire message. Darla replied,

texting“Friday would be great. What time?”

It didn’t surprise me a bit to note that her reply came from a mobile device. They’re harder to read, and people are often on the go when they use them.

And that is what happens when we rush. We miss things that are right in front of us. I learned a lot about Darla in that quick response. If I didn’t understand the dynamics, I might think she’s not so bright. But she holds down a very responsible job. I can’t conclude she lacks intelligence, but I can conclude that I need to be aware of the fact that she can reply without understanding. I will communicate with her differently than with someone who considers every word. I’ll check her facts and reconfirm our agreements and take more responsibility for the effectiveness of our communication.

It’s amazing how much we can learn about someone from a six-word email. Or a short blog post – which is why I’ll run spell-check on this before I hit save.

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Books by the box

With the holidays coming up, consider giving people the gift of the perfect words. You can get books for you whole team at a great price when you order books by the box. Or, just get yourself a book or two to prepare you to communicate effectively throughout the holiday rush.

That’s it for now. It’s so nice to be back.


SpeakStrong and collaborate without compromise

Got a communication question? Ask me!

Want to use any of the articles on your site? You are welcome to with this tag:
Meryl Runion is the creator of the SpeakStrong Method. You can find her at www.speakstrong.com

Manage the Process

Wendy Mack’s fall newsletter asks: which of the following tools is the most powerful for motivating employees?

  • Support for making progress
  • Recognition for good work
  • Incentives
  • Interpersonal supportwendy_mack
  • Clear goals

If you’re like ninety-five percent of managers, you believe recognition for good work has the most impact on employee motivation. But Harvard University has proven that support for making progress is the greatest motivator, particularly for scientists, engineers, programmers, marketers, and other knowledge workers. Managing by objectives, which puts the focus on outcome, misses the opportunities of managing by means (Profit Beyond Measure, Thomas Johnson). Focusing on progress motivates – but requires skill and comes with a warning… continued

PowerPhrase: We have good alchemy

Lauren and I collaborate on writing projects. We share ideas at various stages of refinement. We respect each other’s thinking enough that we’re not embarrassed to share raw ideas. Our bad ideas form a foundation for some really good ones. 

collabnocompIn personal relationships, people talk about having good chemistry. In business relationships, I will sometimes say,

  • We have good alchemy.

Our collaborations don’t involve compromise. They create something new that neither one of us could have created on our own. That’s alchemy, synergy, and collaboration at its best. 

Clutter is the result of delayed decision-making

Organized Audrey says it well. “Clutter is the result of delayed decision-making.”

thinking.smBecome a decision-maker. Practice by looking around your desk – your home – your closets. Chances are you’ll see evidence of delayed decisions all around you. 

Then, consider your inbox. How many delayed decisions are in there? In lean terms, consider your cluttered emails as excess inventory – one of the seven wastes of lean. Then, consider the sum-total of conversations you’ve delayed. How much energy are they zapping?

Here’s what you don’t want to do. Don’t delete all your emails just to get rid of the clutter. Note, you don’t need to get your inbox down to zero by the end of the day. You don’t need to go out and have every delayed conversation by 5 PM on Friday. Just stop delaying decisions you can make now, stop postponing conversations you can have now, and live your life with more dynamic immediacy. Then, take heart that while you may still have clutter, you’re moving in the right direction. 

Clutter is the result of delayed decision-making. Organization is the result of systems and processes that make decision-making easy. But that’s the subject of another post. 

The Answer is a Question – and Walking in Each Other’s Shoes

After visiting FastCap manufacturing, a visitor emailed back with the observation that everybody presented consisely and effectively at the company-wide morning meeting. He wanted to know – what’s the secret?

Paul explains that they teach and train their people to be pithy and consise. As soon as someone starts to give a ramblng response, they stop and ask someone else for their input. Another factor is that everyone leads the morning meeting at one point or another, so they all know what it’s like to have the responsibility of keeping the group on track.

Watch Paul explain it here.