- Accept information or action from other people first and digest it, don’t react. The more dramatic you appear in relation to this will affect if people come back to you again the next time. Almost everyone is looking for someone to listen to them, not freak out with them.
- Get the work done.I have unfortunately worked on projects with people that, when the deadline comes, they are back in the board room with an incomplete portion and a list of reasons why they couldn’t get something done. Seth Godin talks about establishing a “ship date”. Whatever the project is there are always other people counting on you. Pick the deadline, do the work, and come together with a list of reasons why your portion could be better.
- Go into detail. Most people stop short of extraordinary because they leave out the details. They see the finish line, the style the work can take to pass, and work until the bare minimum is done. For social media connections I still shift through print and online magazines looking for reporters and editors and photographers to connect with. This type of work isn’t always noticed or praised, but the results it brings in is.
- When you make up your mind to pursue something follow through. A tendency for humans is to second guess ourselves and try too much to be the “innovator”. A lot of times this causes your team to scramble and try to follow one idea just in enough time for you to dream up another. Focus is the key to winning in this hyperstimulated life.
- Empathy, used wisely, can strengthen your leadership role. No one wants a pushover or a General Patton, but knowing how to connect with your team, clients, or whatever will be the difference of getting good or great work accomplished.
- Know more to talk about than just your job or what is in your life. Nothing can be more boring than trying to talk with someone whose only answer is that they are “so busy right now”. That’s not necessarily true and the conversation tends to end there. There is nothing for the other person to connect with you on. Reading books, magazines, and just a couple of new stories. Drop them into conversation without being an ass. Everyone will appreciate it.
- If you call or text someone immediately after they did not pick up your first call, stop it, stop it right now. The world has been engineered to assume that everyone is available 24/7 which is. not. the. case. Phones, especially texts and emails, are meant to be read and responded to on the recipients time. There should not be a reason that someone is “too busy” to answer, but there are reasons why “I have my hands full because I’m carrying a really fucking heavy box to the car in the pouring rain” excuse.
- On a similar note, if you call the nearest person to the intended recipient is next to after they don’t answer, stop. Again, there are reasons why people aren’t answering and they are not all negative. Give people a chance to work, live, play and call you back.
- I’m not harking solely on caller, emailers, and constant texters. No one should trust a person who does not return texts, emails, calls. If you do not check your voicemail regularly then state that in your voicemail message.
- When someone states an idea or project aloud to others it should not be to sound more progressive or ambitious. Talking about ideas you are about to expand on is fantastic to hold you accountable, but if you say every dream that comes into your mind people will soon hear your words as filler. Choose your words wisely.
- Read. Just do it. Reading books will help you surpass your peers. Just don’t be an ass about it. No one cares what you are reading until you can show them how to apply it.
- Keep a clean house. No one expects you (if you are my age at 26) to have matching bath towels, bed sheets, or artwork for your home, but to bring people into your home is to open up how you personally operate. Don’t show off chaos.
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