As some of you may know, I have published multiple articles on ezinearticles.com. I decided to delve further into some of the articles with a Q & A to help analyze questions business owners frequently ask me. The article I chose is, “Business Confidence – How You Know You Have It” http://tinyurl.com/2epn9ny
Q: Once you first start working with an executive or his/her team, do you find most are unaware of their natural abilities?
A: No, I typically find that most persons in management positions are very aware of their strengths and areas of challenge. However, what I see most often is people not necessarily knowing how to LEVERAGE their strengths and natural abilities in a way that really serves their organization as well as themselves.
Q: Is it true that, as we age, it becomes more difficult to step out of our comfort zone and try new things? How do you advise someone who is scared of change?
A. Making changes or stepping outside our comfort zones can be more difficult as we age. That is true. When I discover this reluctance or resistance in my clients, I help them to identify specific action steps that will lead them to whatever they want to accomplish. Then I support them through each of those action steps until they reach their goal. The key is to break down the process into small, manageable steps to reduce the fear.
Q. Decision-making can be a struggle. Do you have a suggestion for how long someone should consider their options before making an executive or business decision?
A. Persons in management roles have to make many decisions, large and small, every day. It’s important for them to gather the information they need in order to make wise decisions. Major decisions with great impact upon lots of people and company bottom line demand a longer period of time devoted to information gathering. Eventually, though, the manager has to bite the bullet and make a decision. And live with the consequences of that choice…which is not always easy.
Q. Can you give a good example of how business owners can stretch themselves voluntarily, but not ‘over-do’ it?
A. Yes. One example would be to develop a business plan if they don’t have one currently. It’s amazing how many businesses don’t have a formal plan. Get a copy of Jim Horan’s workbook entitled, The One Page Business Plan, and complete all of the exercises. Once those exercises are done, the business owner has the necessary substance for the plan. Then it’s just a matter of organizing all of that material into a basic, readable document.
Q. I think it is the law of nature to struggle with setbacks. Do you recommend setting a “grieving period” to help overcome disappointments?
A. Managers and executives are people first. They have emotions, and those emotions need to be acknowledged and dealt with before they can move on to the next project or task. So yes, they ought to take time to reflect on what went wrong—and why—before attempting to file it and move forward. The period of reflection may last a few hours or weeks, depending upon the magnitude of the disappointment or setback. It may be beneficial to talk with a trusted colleague or friend about the situation during the reflection period.
Q. Addressing problems in a systemic way makes sense… but why is it sometimes harder to confront conflict than it is to simply “deal with it” grudgingly?
A. Most people are not trained to deal effectively with conflict. In our families of origin we may have grown up witnessing conflict being swept under the rug or being dealt with violently. As a result, many people fear conflict. The fear prevents them from coping with it in a healthy, straight forward manner. We like to pretend it doesn’t really exist, or that it’s not as bad as it is. We often run from it.
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