Author Archives: austinparry
Apart from a few learnings it has gone.
Our focus from here on in is the new financial year and how we can improve on the last one, no matter how it actually turned out.
So how clear is your vision for this year?
It is valuable to envision the coming year happening the way you want it to.
There is a quotation that suggests doing what you have always done won’t get you any different results to what you have always got.
To move forward there is a need to go beyond where you have been and what you have done. To search out new ground, find new ideas. To think outside the square.
To do this it could be helpful to work with your key stakeholders to find areas that you may not have considered. To involve them in working out your new look.
These stakeholders for you may be Directors, shareholders, customers, wholesalers, suppliers, partners, staff. Anyone who has some connection to your business.
So as you head into this new financial year. How prepared are you?
Do you have clarity about where you ought to go, so as to make a difference to last year.
If not give me a call. I can help you to work out how to do it differently, so you will be overjoyed come 30 June 2014.
“The fundamental rule for any team is to place the interests of the team above the interests of any of the individual team members.” (“Absolute Leadership” by Joseph Tigani, page 147.)
He goes on to say, “An Absolute Team comprises of individuals who are guided and united to willingly act to achieve collectively shared and valued outcomes.”
There is a story that suggests that one of Australia‘s greats in Rugby league saw himself above fitting in with the Team process and was let go, much to the disgust of the followers, yet the team performed far better when all agreed to conform to the team requirements.
As I watch the processes of Federal politics, I can’t help question what true Leadership is all about and how a real team performs in the present scenario.
The role of the opposition in a game of putting the main team off their game.
We will in the actual game, usually quite near the beginning, both teams rough each other up to attempt to force them to lose focus from the game in hand.
The art form of the team is to work together to prevent the loss of focus. To continue to keep fully focused on the task at hand:- to win the game.
It was quoted by a politician that: “Divided we fall” . If only the individuals within the team could defocus from their own personal agendas and unite behind the teams singular objective.
Unfortunately, I am not in the position of being able to coach any of the politicians in Federal politics. It would be a great challenge to have that opportunity, the only issue is whether any of them would listen.
Coaching can only occur when the person who is in need of the coaching is open to being coached. How willing are you to be open to changing the way you do things.
How well does your team actually work together? Are you truly focused on the teams agenda or on your own?
In politics it seems like a dog eat dog world. The team seems to only have validity when it serves the individuals needs, rather than the other way when the individual serves the teams needs.
Maybe we are not able to instantly change our political system, even though it is worth attempting to do so. Similarly it may have value to convince the team not to succumb to the media’s attempt to disrupt the team. Or even to flag to the media that we question their agenda.
However, the most important lesson to me is that we focus on the teams that we are part of in our daily life and work. Ensuring that our major focus is on bringing about the agenda of the team, rather than our own personal agenda.
If your team is not working as it ought, contact me, there are a variety of things that can be done to get the team running as it ought.
If you have the chance to influence the political team similarly, go for it.
Thanks for listening. Catch you soon.
How good are you at being the Leader?
Do you achieve all you wish to achieve and more in your business?
Do you know how to take your business to the next level?
It is so easy to dream about where you would like things to be! Yet so hard to know what to do to get them there. Isn’t it?
If only everyone would play their part in the business seriously. Take their roles responsibly. Wouldn’t it be great? Then you wouldn’t have to get so frustrated, checking on everyone all the time, to make sure everything is done.
What can you do to show everyone that you are the Leader, that your business has great value and that it is a great place to work?
I actually use a method defined in “Absolute Leadership”, by Joseph Tigani.
There is only one way to truly get it and that is to experience it. Until that happens, here is an overview of the process
However, the steps are put together to assist you to work out where you are at this moment, what is working and what is not. Also where you actually want to go and whether there is congruence between the two.
Having found where you really want to go, the question is, “what needs to change to achieve that end result?”
How open are you to brainstorming your present environment? It can actually be fun to do that in a none threatening environment, where no one will pay out on you for the fault and failures of the past, but rather compliment you for being willing to be so honest.
With that under our belt, we take a short journey to see what it is that truly excites us. The motivation for change comes from the excitement that is created by a new vision. What is it about your new vision that gets you revved up and willing to put time and effort into an activity?
So you have this small group of people who work for you? How well do you know them? How well do they know you? Do they trust you? How well do they understand your motivation for running your business? Do they know about your passion?
What can you do better to improve all these things? What processes can you put in place, within the team, to improve their understanding of what you are all about? There are lots, believe me, we just need to work out the best for your situation.
This understanding will lead to a better team, where all are working with a common vision, a common purpose. So that the business will begin to hum along brilliantly.
Finally, what do we put in place that measures the movement and growth?
What do we put in place to make sure that everything is monitored to see that all is running smoothly?
Each business requires specific feedback to be put in place so that the system is monitored in such a way that you can let it run on automatic, relying on the checks and balances that you have put in place assure you that all is running smoothly.
This is real Leadership, Absolute Leadership, where the business runs like a well oiled machine with minimal interference from you, but where you still know what is going on at any time.
If you would like to be this Leader with a business that pleases you, with everyone working together as a happy team and you are making money with far less stress than before. Get in contact with me.
Let us have a chat to see whether you qualify to be one of my clients and whether I believe you have what it takes to create the ideal business.
My email is email@example.com
I work anywhere in the world by phone or Skype. If you are in my local area we can do face to face.
Here’s to your success as a Real Leader.
Saw a few questionable April Fool’s activities mentioned over the last few days.
It always makes me wonder why people will go out of their way to make a fool out of someone else when they spend so much time working at covering up how they have been or are being a fool in their business, in their life, in general.
From a Leadership perspective, we are fools when we do not have awareness of where we are and where we want to go.
The real leaders spends time working on clarifying their meaning and purpose.
What are the values that drive you? How well have you clarified them.
The story of you being at a Leadership Award Night in ten years time, receiving an award for your exceptional achievement as a Leader over the previous ten years.
You are required to make an acceptance speech on what has been your achievements, the initiatives you have taken, the results you have achieved.
The drivers in your life, that is, how you clarified where you wanted to get to in your business and your life. What you used to measure success.
The values that drove you. What you aspired to in your day by day activities.
Some simple values might be honesty, openness, fun, and so on.
What are your values, what do you aspire to? What gives your life meaning and purpose?
You may be considered a fool if you have no awareness of what drives you. For you could be driven in a multitude of directions, none officially of your choice, you never know where your business, your life may end up if you don’t have your own drivers.
How seriously have you clarified what you wish to see as the outcome for your business, your life?
You need to. Lets catch up to see how we can clarify where you are now and where you are going. Before you end up where you don’t want to go.
Peter Drucker, in his book “The Leader of the Future”, sums up leadership as “the only definition of a leader is someone who has followers.”
Warren Bennis’ definition of leadership focusses much more on the individual capability of the leader: “Leadership is a function of knowing yourself, having a vision that is well communicated, building trust among colleagues, and taking effective action to realise your own leadership potential.”
Joe Tigani in “Absolute Leadership“, says, “The starting point is to be able to lead yourself. Once you gain clarity about what really matters to you and the direction you would like to take, then that serves as the basis to develop the necessary skills to inspire other people to willingly follow you as a leaders”.
Leadership is getting people to do things they have never thought of doing, do not believe are possible or that they do not want to do. This suggests that the leader needs to have pushed them-self to do things they initially did not believe were possible.
Effective leadership means influencing people to get things done to a standard and quality above their norm – and doing it willingly. However, there needs to be in the leader the awareness of what it takes to stretch beyond the norm, they need to have gone there.
In an organisation, leadership is the action of committing employees to contribute their best to the purpose of the company. This requires the leader to have committed their best to that same purpose.
Real, genuine leadership is always prefaced by the leader knowing what is required by through their own personal journey. There is a need to have walked the talk.
Leadership is a way of focusing and motivating a group to enable them to achieve their aims. Leadership is imperative for moulding a group of people into a team. Great leaders know how to make people function in a collaborative fashion, and how to motivate them to perform at their peak. Leaders also know how to balance the individual team member’s needs and goals with that of the team.
Unless the territory is known. Unless the map has been sighted. Unless the leader already has an awareness of the obstacles ahead then their ability as a leader is lacking.
The true leader knows the generic hurdles that will be encountered and that their followers will be able to deal with those hurdles. Not necessarily easily, but they will be surmountable.
And Combining all these definition, we can see leadership is a complex activity involving:
ü A process of influence;
ü People who are both leaders and followers;
ü Integrity, trust, commitment and communication; and
ü A range of possible outcomes – the achievement of goals, but also the commitment of individuals to such goals, the enhancement of group cohesion and the reinforcement of change.
Finally, great leaders move people – they work through emotions. They find effective ways to understand and improve the way they handle their own and their followers’ emotions.
As a leader, you should act as your group’s emotional guide. When you drive emotions positively you bring out everyone’s best. You ignite people’s passion, inspire the best in them, and create resonance.
Being a leader is complicated. Being a leader is also simple.
The answer: be yourself. Trust in others. seek input. Listen. Be open to all possibilities. Challenge people lovingly. Never expect anyone to do something that you would not do yourself.
You will never know what a person can do till you give them the chance to have a go. It is only in the doing, allowing for the fact that failure may occur, that real leadership emerges.
All the genuine followers are in fact leaders, learning as the process enfolds. If they are not then they are puppets and you are pulling their strings. That is not leadership, it is manipulation.
There is a major difference, even though many religions and politicians do not understand this.
Leadership empowers people to choose their direction, their decisions, their destiny.
Recently I have been involved with different people who all seemed to have their own ide as to what being a Leader was all about.
One seemed to feel it was getting everyone to follow, without question, the directions that they were giving as to how things ought to be done.
It was also interesting to observe those who were being given these directions. There we a great vacuum in the area of passion, nobody seemed to be motivated, at all, to respond to the directions, they did, however, it was with a cool detachment, even a sort of passive resistance response.
Another was extremely open with what they expected, a very vague communication of requirements. ‘Just do what you feel is best to achieve so and so’, was the directive.
Interesting to observe that in this case there was still a great deal of frustration and questionable energy. People were in a real state of loss and confusion about what was really being expected of them. Total uncertainty, total lack of productivity, what got achieved was more good luck than good management.
Are these two your model or have you another possibility in your stable as to what good leadership is all about.
I will awair comments as to your perception of good leadership and come back with other thoughts soon.
When you are on your journey through life it is so tempting to believe that getting by is enough.
The ‘heroes journey awareness’ is that the purpose of the journey is to help us grow beyond the present perception of solving issues.
The Einstein quote suggesting that today’s challenges are not solved by the same mindset by which they were created, has real impact here.
The hero went out into the unknown and came back wiser and far better equipped to deal with the issues at hand. This is what being extra-ordinary is all about.
To go beyond the standard way, the accepted way, the ordinary way is the beginning of creating a business that stands out. That is different to its competitors. It is the difference that sets you apart in the way you run your business.
What is your Unique Value Proposition? What is it that sets you apart from your competitors? What is it that makes it a no-brainer for your customers to choose you instead of your competitors?
Only you know this. However, on your own you may find it difficult to step back and make an objective assessment.
To me, for you to create extra-ordinary business results, you need to be able to step aside from the “working in your business” mode and subject yourself to a process that will help you name just what it is about you that is special, that is different, extra-ordinary.
You actually need to see just how you do things and what matters to you. To be open to see how those around you, both in and outside your business. The honesty level needs to be high. For it is only when we are blatantly honest with ourselves that we actually are able to see the difference between wishful thinking and reality.
It is getting in touch with this real that will lead you to finding your uniqueness, what sets you apart from the crowd.
At Austin Parry: “Your Journey to Extra-ordinary Business Results”, our focus is on bringing this process into fruition. On doing the work that will lead you to the uncovering of your unique value proposition. This is not an overnight experience, anymore than losing 5 kg or getting fit is an overnight task.
However, just as the result of both of those is worth committing the time and effort, similarly, the commitment to discovering your uniqueness is worth the investment.
Lao-tzu is quoted as saying, “the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. So with discovering your extra-ordinary, it will be a journey, there will be frustrations and elation both, however, you do have to take that first step to start the journey .
It mainly depends on whether one wishes to just get by or whether one wishes to be extra-ordinary.
I challenge you to look at yourself and ask, “Am I content to just stay where I am, or am I willing to commit to a journey that will set me aside as being unique and one of a kind in the market-place?
Let me know where you are on your journey to extra-ordinary.
To start with this is not a summary or a synopsis of Steve Jobs life and works. It is another of my ramblings, kick started by stuff that I have read in the biography of Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.
You may or may not have seen my Facebook or Twitter posts on my perception of Steve’s approach to Leadership and achievement. If not, a summary of what I said is that when one has a vision, one has to be courageous enough to go out on a limb to proclaim that vision, not giving a stuff about what others think about it.
The visionaries of this world, the gurus of this world, the dreamers of this world who had enough belief in what they possessed that they were willing to put their future on the line, were the ones n general that were recognised. The Edison’s, the Faraday’s, the Freud’s the Columbus’s and so on.
To be willing to be seen as arrogant. To be open to criticism for not fitting into the status quo. To be willing to sacrifice popularity for the sake of achieving the dream. To be willing to head out with absolutely no proof that you were going to achieve, purely because you knew deep inside that that was the direction you needed to go.
I am only half way through the book, so there may be things I am not yet aware of, however I have become aware of some great options from what I have read.
What are they?
Number one. Be possessed by your vision that you have a burning desire to follow it.
Number two. don’t ever entertain that it can be done differently.
Number three. Take on board your team those who can capture the dream that you promote.
Number four. In the face of adversity search for the people who still believe in your vision.
Number 4. There is always a better way. No matter how well you define your way, someone else can improve on it.
Number 5. Don’t allow the negative/conservative people to steal your vision.
Number 6. Do it anyway.
Edward de Bono did some work 9n the 1980’s and wrote a book on: The Six Thinking Hats this is a way to still hold strongly onto the dream/vision, yet at the same time do what Jobs did not do.
Jobs was brilliant with new ideas, not very good at listening to other ideas, some of which were “Black hat” ideas. Reason’s why it might not work. These people should not control the ideas, however, they should be available for involvement in the assessment process. It could have helped him achieve more easily. Who knows?
How willing are you to step up to the plate and own totally your dreams, vision and beliefs. Then follow through, no matter what others may think.
That is Leadership.
I have had the privilege to have worked for two persons who had that single mindedness of purpose. They did what others said could not be done. They followed their visions, beliefs and dreams. They were the epitome of Steve Jobs, willing to be different, and were. One has since died and his presence lives on, the other is still continuing to break new ground.
Are you? At Austin Parry: “Your Journey to Extra-ordinary Business Results”, we work with you to achieve that position, where you are able to stand out and become who you believe you can be.
Thanks Steve, thanks to Noel, thanks to Greg. Thanks to those others who would not believe that it was not possible and did it anyway.
The future is created by those who can not conceive that it could not happen, so continue to move forward.
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The AHFA Team
I have been reading a book by Carol S. Dweck called “mindset: the new psychology of success.
Dweck differentiates between two types of mindset. 1. Fixed mindset and 2. Growth mindset.
Initially she suggests that depending on our early influences, birth, family, educators.
From a leadership point of view, I am intrigued that both of these group have within them people who have become identified as leaders. Yet the leadership that is given can differ quite dramatically.
One leader can believe that things all have a place and ought to be in their place. Many of these leaders are influenced majorly by fundamental belief systems that proclaim this is the way things are intended to be. This is the fixed mindset leader.
Their leadership is fairly dogmatic, though it could be very benevolent and caring. However, there is no room left for questioning or offering a different option.
Another can be a the growth mindset leader who is aware that today failures pave the way to tomorrows successes. There is an openness to new possibilities. This form of leadership is always open to doing things better.
Which of these is correct?
A fixed mindset leader I would be going all out to prove to you that I was correct, the growth mindset leader, in their wisdom, would not attempt to change a fixed mindset person. It appears unfortunately the there is a, “No correspondence will be entered into”, policy. The jury for the fixed mindset leader is not “Still out,” but rather has passed their verdict and gone home.
A growth mindset leader is one who does not believe they have all the answers and as such will be open to consider options, there is no need to prove they have all the answers as they don’t believe they have. The belief is that development can occur, growth is possible, new awareness’s and ideas will manifest.
There is a massive optimism for the growth mindset leader. There is always a better way and we will search for it.
The fixed mindset leader is a very limiting place to be as there is no room for change, growth, development and new ideas. it is a very negative place to be as in essence there is no chance of anything different occurring.
Personally, today’s climate in business, politics, relationships, religious faith would be a better place if the focus of our leaders was on what could be, on growth and development.
As I continue to listen to the political debate in Australia, the UK, Europe, New Guinea, the USA, throughout the world; as I listen to the religious debate similarly throughout the world, I hear so much fixed mindset leadership, all fighting to preserve the status quo.
My prayer is that people as a whole will search for growth mindset leaders. leaders who will listen, question, ask why this way, could it be that way? Open to rethinking ways to do all that we do, so that it is more relevant, more efficient, more humane, more in touch with truth, honesty and integrity.
We are getting better and more of these leaders are materialising, however, the more of us who get on board, the soon it will reach a tipping point.