Thank God It's Monday®! Blog

Under-Promise and Over-Deliver

Have you ever ordered a pizza, the guy on the phone said it would be an hour, and it shows up in 40 minutes. You’re pumped! But if he promised 30 minutes and it came in 40, you’d be ticked off, even though the result was the same.

Or how about the last time you ordered a widget over the internet? They said it’d arrive in 7-10 business days. When it comes on Day 5, you are one happy customer.

Coincidence? Not a chance. Maybe you’re just lucky? Not unless everybody else is too.

Companies that beat their own promises know exactly what they’re doing. Under-Promise and Over-Deliver.

That way, the same result becomes a pleasant surprise and your stock goes up in the eyes of the customer.

Have a great Monday!

Roxanne

Progress as Promised!

Researchers are learning more all the time about the importance of feeling progress toward our workplace goals. It’s called the Progress Principle, and it’s fast becoming a big part of the conversation about employee engagement. In fact, the Harvard Business Reviews research shows it is the most important motivator.

Multiple studies have shown that a feeling of progress in our work is at or near the top in motivation—way ahead of traditional incentives like raises and bonuses.

But not everyone is paying attention. In a survey that asked managers to rank five employee motivators, the feeling of progress came in dead last.

Let your competition pour money into more expensive motivators. A feeling of progress costs little or nothing. Break large projects into smaller benchmarks, and celebrate each step as it’s achieved. It’s as simple as that.

It’s yet another opportunity for those who are paying attention to pull ahead of the pack.

Owning Your Relationships

Last week we talked about how important it was for you to create a great relationship with your boss—assuming the best and owning the responsibility of having a great relationship.

We talked about how for more than 75% of employees, dealing with their immediate supervisor is the most stressful part of their job and the research that shows that half of employees have a shaky relationship with their boss.

Let’s cover several more ideas about how to make a better relationship with your boss.

Take yourself lightly—and your results seriously

You’re boss’s boss demands results and so therefore…well, that means you need to produce results. Stay playful and fun AND make sure you hit your deadlines and your goals. That’s the job.

Next: Be Dependable

If the project is due at 3:00 every Thursday, then, well, it’s due at 3:00 every Thursday…Even if it’s your busiest week for the year. Even if you have a hang nail. It’s just plain due at 3:00 on Thursday.

You shouldn’t need reminders and cajoling to get your work done—if the work is due, the work is due. If the outcome is defined, then find a way to hit the outcome.

Simple. Easy. Just be dependable.

Next, be genuine.

There’s a funky thing that happens when someone isn’t performing. They become disingenuous. They start looking for people to blame. On the top of the list is always—the boss.

But it’s not the boss who isn’t performing. It’s you. So, stay sincere and stay humble. Deal with it by being authentic and ask for the help you need. We all get off track. Character is revealed by how we handle those situations.

And next, be resourceful.

Learned helplessness is a growing phenomenon—you see it all the time. People who say, “Well, I don’t know how to do that so I stopped.”

Well, here’s an important distinction. You weren’t hired to quit…you were hired to persevere. In a world where Google gives you almost every answer to every question within seconds, there is no reason to stop. Even if you can’t access Google, you still can be resourceful.

Next, anticipate needs.

A friend told me once how he moved up the ladder with record speed to become the assistant to the General. He started in the mail room. And while dropping the mail for the general said, “General, if you’d like, I can open the mail and draft an initial response to every piece and then make the changes based on what you tell me to do.”

After just a few letters, he was advanced to one of the top positions in the army. He anticipated needs.

How can you find ways to add more value and anticipate the needs of your supervisor?

Start applying these 11 ways to improve your relationship with your boss and watch your career blossom.

Conquer your fear and lethargy

There are basically two things that are getting in the way of your next level of success, lethargy and fear. Lethargy is just, “Mmm . . . can we sit on the sofa and watch television tonight?” There’s always something that keeps us from the discipline of doing what we know we need to do to elevate to the next level.

The other one is fear. That little common voice that comes across to all of us that says, “You’re not enough. You’re not enough. There must be somebody smarter. There must be somebody better.” But the reality is, everything great was created by a mere mortal. Someone who didn’t have any more intelligence, didn’t have anything else that others didn’t have. They just conquered their fear and their lethargy.

Productive Meetings

 

 

If you ever really want to waste time at work, go to a meeting. A meeting that’s unstructured, that doesn’t have an actual agenda where you know exactly what the outcomes are for each section of the meeting, what time it starts, when it ends, who is responsible, and what you’re truly trying to accomplish, you can waste a lot of time in meetings. You see, in most meetings, there’s topics listed. While topic is lovely, but it doesn’t instruct people about what are we really doing about that topic?

For example, if the topic says Holiday Party, no one knows what you’re really doing. If instead you say define the budget, the theme and choose the date, and assign the team members who will be in charge of the holiday party, now everyone knows the outcomes of the meeting, and by doing that, everyone gets the outcomes so much faster. So make sure that you create actionable agendas, not agendas, and if there’s isn’t an agenda, don’t go to the meeting.