Thoughts on Leadership is the brain child of Paul Bridle. This is the place that Paul shares his monthly thoughts.

Xmas 2011

Posted: December 23rd, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Business, Social | No Comments »

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Well, it’s Christmas shopping time again and I bet you’re as busy as everybody else trying to plan out for Christmas.

It’s Thoughts on Leadership time for the end of the year so I was thinking let’s have a review of the year and let’s also look forward to 2012.

So, end of 2011 and somebody described it to me, “it’s been a year of having to work a lot harder and run a lot faster just to stand still.”  And I suppose for many of us it may feel quite like that.  It’s been a year where it seems you put more effort into things and not really moved a lot further forward than we were a year or two ago.  But 2012 is around the corner and it’s new opportunity.  We don’t know what’s going to happen economically.  We don’t know what’s going to happen to the world at large.  But we do know that we are in control of what we are in control of.  Stop focusing on things that you’re not in control of.  Stop focusing on the things that you have got no input to and focus on what you can.

My word of advice for 2012 is going to be:  what — where do you really add value?  And I know we’ve talked about this in the past before but the value that we offer is going to be so important to our customers and to what we are doing out there in the market place.  If we really, really don’t know how to have value then we really, really are not in the position to add, to charge anything for it.

So 2012 is going to be about what do we do and how do we add value in a way that we’ve never had it before.  It’s a time to really reinvent ourselves.  What are we really good at?  Get back to defining what are we really good at, what is our expertise and work with other people in areas where it’s not our expertise, finding ways of doing things with partnerships in alliances with other organisations or other people and cut away some of the stuff that we’re not really very good at all.

2012 is going to be opportunity to differentiate yourself in some way.  It’s got to be that opportunity to really review the market altogether.  Don’t think about the customers and what they’re needing, think about what the customers need that they don’t even know they need.  There’s no point in trying to ask your customers what it is that they really want.  Customers are looking for solutions and they’re looking for new ideas, principally new ideas, better ways of doing things.

So this year ahead is going to be a chance really to reinvent yourself as a business and as a leader.  The start of leadership you’ve had – is it working for you?  Has it been effective?  Is it going to be the leadership style you need in the year ahead?  These are the questions that you really need to be asking yourself in this moment.  What type of leader am I going to be in 2012 and what do I need to do to be able to get there?  Don’t be frightened to talk to your people.  What are they looking for from you in 2012?  Those are sorts of things that you need to be asking yourself at this stage.

So in essence, don’t be frightened of 2012.  Is it going to be easy?  No, it’s not.  Is it going to be hard?  It depends on how you use the word “hard”.  It’s going to be a challenge, yes, but it can also be exciting to have that challenge.  It can also be exciting to see the opportunities and do something a little bit different.  Throw things up in the air.  Ask yourself, “If I was going to do something different, what could I do?”  What further activities could we involve in and do really, really well?  We’ve diversified in 2011 and it’s been hard work.  But the more you put your mind to it, the more effort you put into it, slowly the rewards start to come.

So don’t just think about 2012 as an end game.  Think about 2012 as the start of a new way of doing business, the start of a new approach to things that you’re going to do.  Diversify, work in partnership with alliances with other people, streamline some of what we are doing, add real value, add value that we don’t even know where – what it is yet but we’ve got to find – those are the type of things that you’ll want to look at launching in 2012 that will pay you benefits in 2015.  And that’s the mindset you’ve got to be able to have.

I hope you have a wonderful festive season.  I hope that the whole festive season and the New Year is just an opportunity for you to unwind and have some fun and spend some time with your family.  I certainly am going to do that.  And let’s get refreshed and ready for 2012.

2012 we bring out new ideas and new products and new things to help and make life more interesting, things that no one else that we know of is doing in the market place and we’re trying to reinvent ourselves.  So I challenge you, reinvent yourself in 2012 and I’ll look forward to seeing you there!

Have a great time and all the best for now.  Bye!

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Posted: December 12th, 2011 | Author: | Filed under: Business, Leadership | No Comments »

Subscribe to TOL

Get TOL in three ways; reading, watching or listening. The video and the audio versions are available as a free download either directly or via our podcast. You will find the RSS feeds at either: for the video version or for the audio version.

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These days with the technology, and what we have got available to us we can do so much, we can carry music around with us, carry books, and in fact we can now carry a load of stuff around with us.  The question that it got me thinking about is: what do we actually carry around?  Is it the stuff that we need to help us go to the next level, to be where we need to be in the future or achieve what we want to achieve in the future.  The type of music we listen to, the type of books we read, the type of articles we look at, and the sights we go looking at or feeding our mind in some way.  They are either pushing us to another level or they are holding us back.

So, I got to thinking about it and I was thinking about the work place.  What sort of literature do you provide for people to read?  Many organisations you know don’t necessarily provide anything.  I started to realise that the good organisations that I’d been to actually put literature out there that was good for the employees, that was stuff that they wanted to learn.  In fact, many of them have got libraries and people are encouraged to borrow the books from the libraries.  And they have books that would help them develop them, improve their knowledge, skills, their ability and so forth.

So I was thinking about in your business, do you have that encouragement for people to learn the right things, to have access to the things they need that makes them better?  Are you actively encouraging people?  Because really we are in the day and age when people are going to be more responsible for their own learning.  The type of music that people are listening to, does it get them in the mood for the job that they do?  Is it the type of music that stimulates them?  Or is it like walking into the morgue at the beginning of the day?

Music can make a difference!

So for this month I wanted you to consider what are you providing?  Are you thinking about these little intricacies?  We can talk about décor; we could talk about a lot of things, but things like reading and music are things that are quite easy to implement and to encourage people with that can actually make a difference.

So my questions for you this month are:

  • What are you doing?
  • Are you doing anything at all?

What are you doing about actively ensuring the flow of knowledge into your organisation, are you are having some sort of input to it?  I’m not saying that you control it or anything like that, but you are having input into it.  For that matter with your children, you should be doing the same thing if you have got children.

So what are you doing about it and what do you need to do to get to the next level?  I am telling you now, 2012 is going to be another challenging year up ahead and if we are not feeding ourselves with the right things in the right way at the right time, then we are not going to be able to grow as individuals.  If we don’t grow as individuals, then our businesses won’t grow either.

Something to think about this month

It’s great to see you again and hope to catch up with you next month.

Have a great month!

Bye for now!

– Paul

P.S – Please check out our new venture over at Bridle Infocus. Also we have new Learning Point DVD’s coming in the New Year, which will be available through Bridle Infocus.

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