Michael Lee Stallard, president of E Pluribus Partners, provides insights about leadership training, team building, communications and executive coaching. E Pluribus Partners focuses on results-driven initiatives that maximize employee engagement, employee retention, employee productivity, innovation and profitability.

Connect at Work By Saying “Hello”

Two Businessmen Greeting Each Other#28 Greet People First Thing in the Morning – When you first arrive at work, take the time to say hello to the people with whom you come in contact.

One friend of ours said that as a young retail store manager, his district manager told him that some of the store employees complained about not receiving a personal greeting in the morning. The young manager didn’t intend to be rude; he was simply focused on the day’s tasks as soon as he walked in the door. But to his employees, it was important that he take the time to show that he valued them through greetings each morning. He began intentionally greeting each employee every morning, and his employees’ perception of him improved.

This is the twenty-eighth post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

6 Needs to Thrive at Work

Women Stressed at WorkAre you performing at the top of your game at work? Or are you struggling, losing interest, or so stressed that you’d just like to walk away? To recognize what is driving either end, consider these six universal human needs and how each is being met, or not, in your job.  Read more »

Connect by Saying “Thank You”

Delivering a Letter#27 Say “Thank You” and Write Thank You Notes – When someone does something for you, be sure to say “thank you.” This seems obvious but you would be surprised how many people don’t do this. If the person did something for you that required considerable effort on his/her part, send a handwritten thank you note. Several outstanding leaders we know send handwritten thank you notes on a regular basis. They know that a handwritten note stands out in this age of electronic communications and communicates that they value the recipient.

This is the twenty-seventh post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

John Wooden: They Called Him Coach

Day of Discovery Document John Wooden They Called Him Coach

Day of Discovery Documentary – John Wooden: They Called Him Coach

I’ve written a lot about legendary Coach John Wooden on this blog, and for good reason. His life, leadership, and legacy are an inspiration to us all.

I highly recommend taking the time to watch the documentary John Wooden: They Called Him Coach, available online. You’ll learn more about Wooden’s perspective on success, love, and faith and see interviews with his family and former players. It will definitely motivate you to be a better leader, family member, and friend.

What’s your favorite Coach Wooden story? Feel free to share in the comments.

 

Tell Me Stories

Two Young Women in Front of Computer Talking#26 “Tell Me Stories” – Have you ever asked someone how his/her day went only to hear a standard reply of “fine?”  If you really want to connect, try “I really would like to know how your day went, so tell me stories.” This practice works well with children, spouses and friends, too.

This is the twenty-sixth post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

Connect, Encourage and Coach for Superior Performance

Supervisor Coaching Employee#25 Connect, Encourage and Coach - Organizations with supervisors who connect with, encourage and coach the people they lead often perform better that those who don’t.  Southwest Airlines discovered that when they reduced the front line supervisor to front line employee ratio so the supervisors could connect, encourage and coach these employees, front line employees performed better.  As a result, Southwest Airlines maintains a front line employee to front line supervisor ratio of 10:1 whereas some airlines maintain a ratio of 40:1.

This is the twenty-fifth post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

3 Lessons from the Life and Leadership of Coach Wooden

As seen on SmartBlog on Leadership.

Most people know the legendary basketball coach for the ten college basketball championships (including four perfect seasons) his UCLA Bruins Men’s Basketball Team won while he was head coach from 1948 until 1975.

Many people know Coach Wooden was inducted twice into the Basketball Hall of Fame as a player and as a coach.

Some know Wooden was awarded the Presidential Medal of Honor.

Few, however, know about the event that constitutes his greatest contribution to the game of basketball.   Read more »

Consider the Effect of Physical Space on Connection

Pixar Headquarters

Pixar Headquarters, Photo Credit Pixar Animation Studios

#24 Consider the Effect of Physical Space on Connection – When Ed Catmull, CEO of Pixar Animation, and Steve Jobs, Pixar’s primary owner at the time, designed Pixar’s new headquarters, they created a large centralized space that included the company’s entrance and visitor reception area, meeting rooms, company cafeteria, employee mail slots and restrooms.  Their rationale was that a centralized space would facilitate connection.

Research supports that physical location and office space design does affect connection.  In general, people who work in physical space near one another feel more connected and physical spaces that are more open encourage connection. Consider how your organization’s physical space and office design encourages or discourages connection and how you can make changes to boost connection.

This is the twenty-fourth post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

To Connect, be a Servant Leader

Starbucks Logo#23 Adopt a “Servant Leadership” Mindset – Here is a powerful truth:  To serve is to connect. This is the notion behind servant leadership. “Servant leaders” connect with the people they lead because they view themselves as serving the people to help them better serve the organization’s mission.

When Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz was struggling to make Starbucks successful as it expanded outside of Seattle, he hired Howard Behar to be the president of Starbucks North America.  Behar moved to Chicago, the first big city Starbucks expanded into, and he went store-to-store getting to know the people and teaching them how to connect with one another and with customers. That was an inflection point in Starbucks’ history. After spectacular growth in North America, Schultz made Behar the first president of Starbucks International and Behar led Starbuck’s international expansion. To learn more, read Howard Behar’s great book, It’s Not About the Coffee. (By the way, Howard Behar went on to become the chairman of the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership.)

This is the twenty-third post in our series entitled “100 Ways to Connect.” The series highlights language, attitudes and behaviors that help you connect with others. Although the language, attitudes and behaviors focus on application in the workplace, you will see that they also apply to your relationships at home and in the community.

Updates and an Exciting Announcement

Much is happening at E Pluribus Partners these days. Presently we are:

  • Working with a global advertising agency to create a custom employee engagement survey
  • Teaching workshops on Connection Cultures at TCU and the forensic accounting firm Connolly, Inc.
  • Teaching online training for Executive Development Partners
  • Teaching a 4.5 hour online course for the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD)

In addition, we are pleased to announce that we have committed to writing our next book on Connection Cultures for ASTD Press. The book will be published in early 2015.

Expanding our relationship with ASTD is a great way for us to help more organizations develop healthy, high performance cultures. ASTD is the world’s largest association dedicated to the training and development profession with 120 chapters across the U.S. and members in more than 100 countries.

Stay tuned for more details about the book in the coming months.

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