Want to know how to make your work and life more fulfilling? Take the time to do a regular three-point check and see your joy, effectiveness and impact increase.
I, Susan, am currently engaged in leading Living Alive program at the Haven Institute through mid-May. This is an intense, jam-packed leadership and personal development program. We have twenty-five participants and a leadership team of five. We are just starting week two.
This program offers me a great opportunity to model and walk my talk.
Many of you have been a part of our team or leadership development programs, heard us speaking, or been at a training session with us where we discuss our team model, The Path to Great Results. While our model is applied to teams, it can also be used as a path for self-assessment and development as a leader that is trying to accomplish a big project or goal.
In our model, we lay-out the path to great results including a focus on each of the following areas:
· The ME
· The WE
· The BUSINESS
It is critical to cultivate each of these areas. However, most leaders tend to overemphasize one, and are likely skimp on another depending upon personal preferences.
I like to apply theories and concepts in real-time so I’m using my leadership of the Living Alive to put our model to the test.
I’ve been doing my three-point check of: The ME, The WE, and The BUSINESS. Each day I take some time to reflect on each of the three focus areas. Let me break it down for you:
This area is how are you doing personally inside and out. There are many ways to self-assess your ME, from very simple to very complex. I like it simple.
I draw a circle and break it into four quadrants:
I simply review the plus and minus of each area.
For the physical, I look at how much I’m running, snacking, how healthy I feel and the types of foods I’m choosing to eat.
For the emotional, I notice how hopeful or closed I feel. Am I frustrated and reactive, or calm and joyful?
For the mental, I consider how clear I am about the material I’m presenting during the sessions. Am I able to track both my detailed day as well as the rest of my life and world events?
Finally, for the spiritual, I consider how meaningful is the work that I’m currently doing? Does it provide me a sense of purpose? Am I taking time to meditate and journal?
Your ME compass can include whatever matters to you. The key is taking the time to reflect and evaluate your inner landscape to make sure, as the flight attendants’ say, that you “put your own oxygen mask on first before you help others.”
This is all about how you are with your important relationships both at home and at work.
For me this month, this includes how I’m doing with my leadership team, both with the participants and my long-distant partnership with CrisMarie. It also includes significant work relationships, as well as friends and family.
I like to track where am I withholding information and creating distance with, and who do I have unfinished conversations with. I try to be curious and courageous about being more transparent and direct.
What I’ve found for The WE is that I often resort to crisis management in my relationships, waiting until things have to be dealt with versus being proactive, making my relationships more sustainable.
For example, I'll give corrective feedback to a team member and make sure we’re clear. However, I might not take the time to have a more casual conversation with that same team member about how they're doing in general.
The WE is about both resolving differences and building a sustainable relationships. Make sure you take care of both the urgent and important issues in your relationships.
This area focuses on the project, goal or task you are working on.
For me, this is the big picture of the program, all the way down to the nitty-gritty details.
For example, I ask myself, why are we doing what we're doing? Is process clear? What’s the impact of the program on the participants? Is the team working together effectively? How effective are our leadership team meetings? Are we on schedule? Does this fit what we’re doing today?
I take both a big picture strategic view about what’s coming down the road and a tactical day-to-day review for the next day or so.
While leading this current program for Haven, I also have my business, thrive! inc. to consider. I check in on what do I need to do to move thrive! along. One piece is writing this blog. Another is coordinating events and working meetings with CrisMarie to keep our consulting, in-person programs, speaking engagements, and book editing coming along.
How do you evaluate or check in on your life, your relationships or your business?
Try the three-point check: The ME, The WE and The BUSINESS to see how you’re doing.
This can be used on a daily, weekly or monthly basis depending upon what fits for you.
For me, I use the three areas to illuminate which ones are easy to focus on and which are more challenging. Then I can self-correct. Otherwise, it’s too easy to get surprised and find myself in either a crisis or a flat-line state.
I know I can use the excuse that I don’t have enough time, but that’s like driving without a map. If you do that you may get to a destination you’re not happy with.
Your work, your relationships and your life will be much more fulfilling and successful when you take some time to check how you’re doing and course correct!
CrisMarie Campbell and Susan Clarke
Coaches, Business Consultants, Speakers and Authors of The Beauty of Conflict
CrisMarie and Susan work leaders and teams, couples in business, and professional women.
They help turnaround dysfunctional teams into high performing, cohesive teams who trust each other, deal with differences directly, and have clarity and alignment on their business strategy so they create great results.
Check out their website: www.thriveinc.com. Connect with CrisMarie and Susan on LinkedIn. Watch their TEDx Talk: Conflict – Use It, Don’t Defuse It! Find your copy of The Beauty of Conflict: Harnessing Your Team's Competitive Advantage here.