Leadership Tips for Discovery in Action Alumni + network
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January 2017

A belated Happy New Year to you all!

Welcome to our first Discovery in Action newsletter for 2017... your 'once a month'  'bite-sized' chunks of practical leadership wisdom!

We hope you have had the opportunity to take a bit of a break over the Christmas period, and feel renewed and energised for the year ahead!

In this first edition of our newsletter for the 2017 year we share :
We post the blogs in this monthly leadership tips publication on Linked In. Please feel free to forward this email to people in your network who you think may find it helpful...

We also use the content we share each month, in the work we do in our consulting practice. Feel free to get in touch to find out more about anything in this newsletter or other blogs on our website.  Enjoy!

Melanie and Paul Eyres

Developing your power and influence

During our Discovery in Action sessions the issue of power and influence often emerges during discussions.  This can be in the context of leading staff, managing up or influencing and leading peers and stakeholders inside or outside the organisation.  An interesting question we sometimes explore, especially when people feel they don’t have a great deal of power, is: Where does your power come from?  This often elicits a deeper understanding of how you can become more influential by drawing on a range of ‘power bases’ that don’t necessarily derive from organisational position or authority.

We were excited when we recently come across a Marshall Goldsmith video and blog that describes a simple model on the seven bases of power.  These seven bases of power are described as:

  1. Coercive – based on fear
  2. Connection – based on the leader’s connections to powerful individuals
  3. Expert – based on knowledge and skill of the leader
  4. Information – based on the leader’s access to valuable information
  5. Legitimate – based on the position held by the leader
  6. Referent – based on the likableness of the leader
  7. Reward – based on the leader’s ability to hand out rewards, both, monetary and non-monetary

We have captured these in this simple info-visual – 7 ways to leverage power.

Click here to access it, and see ideas about how to put some of these bases of power into practice.

Wellbeing and the PERMA model

The beginning of a new year often presents us with an opportunity to think about the year ahead. What do we want to pay more attention to? What do we want to be the same? What do we want to stop? What do we want to start?

One theme that has been a very popular areas of research in recent times has been that of wellbeing. With an increasing prevalence of stress in the workplace, higher levels of burnout, and higher instances of people suffering anxiety and depression, there are many experts sharing their thinking on wellbeing, and what people can do to help themselves to ‘flourish’.

These terms might particularly resonate at a personal level for many of you. Trying the get to the Christmas 'finish' line might have been really challenging. You might have felt quite fatigued, and in some ways, don't want 2017 to be a repeat of 2016. So...what can you stop, start or continue in 2017 to make sure wellbeing is one of your most important priorities?

Positive psychologist Professor Martin Seligman has spent many years researching ‘happiness’. Positive Psychology suggests that happiness is the natural result of building up our well-being and satisfaction with life. His studies have helped him identify 5 building blocks of well-being. Each of these elements is essential to our well-being and satisfaction with life. Together, they form the solid foundation upon which we can build a happy and flourishing life.

He calls his model the PERMA model :

  • P – positive emotion
  • E – engagement
  • R – relationships
  • M – meaning
  • A – achievement

We have drawn an info visual with simple reminders about the PERMA model, and have also identified a range of questions to help leaders use the PERMA model as a lens to assess the contribution they are having to the wellbeing of their team.

Click here  to access this blog post.

A visual to help with planning for the new year...
Less? Same? More? What if...?

For many of us, the lead up to the end of the year, and the Christmas season can be a hectic one! Some of us are desperately trying to knock off those remaining 'end December' items off the 'to do' list. And those lucky enough to have a break, look forward to emptying the brain, being kinder to the body, and replenishing the soul!

We like to start the new year reflecting on the successes of the last, and thinking about how we can make the new year ahead an even better one. What do we want to pay more attention to? What do we want to be the same? What do we want to stop? What do we want to start?

We recently came across a post by Lynne Cazaly, a 'keynote speaker, author and mentor' who also happens to create some amazing visuals that 'help people distil their thinking, apply ideas and innovation and boost the engagement and collaboration effectiveness of teams!' Her pre-Christmas newsletter shared a simple yet powerful visual template called 'Less Same More', which presents a really creative way to explore the 'stop, start, continue' concept'.

As Lynne writes, "What do you want more, less or the same of...?

  • LESS: stop or drop this stuff. Wind back, remove and reduce it.
  • SAME: keep on truckin', keep going, keep moving with this stuff.
  • MORE: ramp it up, do more of this, get or have more of this.

This is about you  - what do you want less, same or more of in your life, in your work. It can relate to anything at all. "

(c) 2016 Lynne Cazaly Image used with permission www.lynnecazaly.com


And in the corner you'll see the image representing innovation and possibility...

and...how about this?

What if...? Imagine if we...? I wonder what would happen if...?

So how might you use a visual like this? Click here to see some ideas and to access a link to this visual.

Leading people when they know more than you!

Does this sound familiar? People perfect their areas of expertise, perform well as individuals and get rewarded with promotions. And for some, they may reach a point, where their expertise is not what they are paid for anymore – instead they are there to lead others, sometimes in areas that are outside their area of expertise. So now, these leaders might have direct reports who ask them questions that they cannot answer – or worse still – may not even understand!

Understanding, and then accepting what it takes to be an excellent leader of others – can be challenging for many. The things that made us who we are, that form a key part of our identity, may not be what is critical to success in our new leadership role. In fact, the things that made us successful before, might be the things we need to ‘let go of’ to be successful in the next passage of leadership. New skills need to be developed and some of the old ones need to be left behind.

Click here to access our blog with a link to this HBR article, and our info-visual sharing the 4 skills to develop. 

Some recent assignments

  • Completed a DiA program with leaders in the child care industry
  • Facilitated an end of program celebration and reflection workshop reviewing learnings from a customised Leadership Development Program
  • Facilitated a divisional workshop to reflect on how people are using their desired cultural behaviours in the day-to-day delivery of their work
Click here to access the Eyres & Associates website to find out what else we do!

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