Archive for the 'Motivation' Category

Leadership Success Quote

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

Here’s a quote worth considering if you are in or aspire to a leadership role:

“Success means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be.”

George Sheehan

There are such strong links between leadership and success.  Try re-reading that and replacing the word ‘Success’ with ‘Leadership’ and see what I mean…

“Leadership means having the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you believe you were meant to be.”

This year I wish you all the courage, the determination, and the will to become the person you were meant to be.

If You are Bullied at Work

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

In the past couple of articles we’ve looked at how to deal with bullying in a team you lead or the workplace where you are in charge.

What about if you are the one being bullied? If your boss, or even a colleague is bullying you, how should you handle that situation?

Just as you need to have no tolerance for bullying within a team you lead, if you are the one being bullied, at some point you will need to stand up for yourself in the face of bullying.

Remember, any bullying or harassment in the workplace is unacceptable and needs to be addressed as soon as possible. Everyone, including you, has a right to feel safe at work and to be treated with respect.

However it is important to resist the urge to try to ‘get back’ at the bully or lower yourself to their tactics in your response.

Exactly how you respond in a situation will depend on the specific context. If you find yourself being publicly bullied or harassed your response may need to be different to a situation where you face secret threats or manipulation.

Either way it is a good idea to prepare yourself before you respond so you can be strong enough to be calm and assertive in your response, no matter how loud and abusive the bully might be. If you become angry and aggressive or ‘fight’ back it will not help in the long term and the bully may even be able to convince others that the problem is all your fault.

So hold your ground. Stay calm. Interrupt a verbal tirade by saying that you both want what’s best. Simply showing that you can be brave in the face of a stream of abuse can help deflect a bully. Often, the bully singles out targets who avoid any conflict since they know that they’ll be more likely to get their way.

A powerful way to interrupt a bully is to say their name. Look into their eyes, speak in a strong clear and firm voice, and repeat their name until they stop talking.

Then take control by asking short questions. Ask short direct clarifying questions and keep asking them until the bully begins to calm down. Don’t get into a discussion, just ask further clarifying questions to show you are trying to really understand what has upset them.

Asking questions can be effective in a variety of different situations, including attacks in front of coworkers, private confrontations or in meetings so it is worthwhile learning this technique.

Concentrate on maintaining a calm appearance – no matter how you are really feeling inside. The louder and more out-of-control the bully is, the calmer you need to appear to be in contrast to them.

Paraphrasing the bully’s responses, deferring the discussion until later when things are more measured or others will be present, even gentle humor – particularly if you can laugh at yourself – can all help to defuse a situation.

However you respond, bullying is serious and needs to be addressed. If you can’t handle it on your own, you need to bring in someone to support you in dealing with it. This can obviously be difficult if the bully is the person you report to. When that is the case you may need to look to other parts of your organization (possibly someone in Human resources or your boss’s boss?) or an external Coach or Mentor to help you to tackle the situation.

At some point you may even decide the bullying is not worth your energy in trying to deal with it and you would rather move on. Should that situation arise, take care to never burn your bridges. If you can’t take any more and can’t get help, you can make your exit but be sure to keep your dignity intact.

If you do decide you must leave your position because of bullying, try to make the decision to leave outside of the emotional realm. When you hand in your notice, do so later, with a cool head, not brimming with rants or fuming about the unfair treatment you got from someone. Remember, you may need those people to vouch for you at some time in the future.

When you do it this way, you get to enjoy a better sense of control. You will reach greater heights of success if you manage to hold your head up high and always maintain your dignity.

Finally if you do find yourself needing to deal with bullying or harassment, make sure you care for yourself, manage your stress levels, maintain a balanced perspective and keep your sense of humor. Take the time to feel good about yourself and stay grateful for what you’ve been blessed with. Remind yourself that as long as you’re doing what’s right, you’ll be fine.

Dealing with a bully can be stressful. For powerful stress management techniques check out the Stress Free Course now at: – completely free: My gift for you.

How to Respond to Workplace Bullying

Friday, July 16th, 2010

In my previous article we looked at what does and does not constitute bullying or harassment in the workplace. Today I want to look at how you should respond as team leader if it occurs in your workplace.

So how should you tackle bullying if you detect it or suspect it is happening in a team that you are responsible for?

Any bullying or harassment in the workplace is unacceptable and needs to be addressed immediately. Everyone has a right to feel safe at work and to be treated with respect.

You should never ignore bullying or hope it will just go away. If anyone reports, or if you witness or suspect, an incident that could be bullying, you must respond rapidly. Otherwise, your silence is perceived by the perpetrator and others as collusion in what is happening.

If you are in a leadership role, and you observe any indications that bullying or harassment might be occurring, you have a responsibility to stand up and show that you will not tolerate such actions from anyone in your team or elsewhere.

Listen to all team members and encourage them to work together cooperatively on solutions to the real problems they are experiencing. Use individual coaching to help individuals modify their behavior and motivate them to be productive team members. See details about how to do this here:

Just as some people bring out your best, and other people bring out your worst, you can bring out the best in other people even at their worst. It’s a matter of understanding where they are coming from and what is likely to work with them.

As with most team-related issues, the best way to address a bullying problem will depend on the specific situation, but a sound first step is usually to begin a conversation around the behaviors you have observed, compared to what you expect.

Facilitate an open conversation with your team members about team values like trust, respect and how they relate to working together in a team. This can be a powerful and helpful start to addressing the situation.

By securing team agreement about how your team members will treat each other going forward, you will both minimize the likelihood of the situation being repeated and ensure that in future no one can say they didn’t know bullying or harassing actions might be unacceptable.

Take particular care not to allow the bullying victim to be targeted personally during your discussions. Focus on acceptable and unacceptable actions and behaviors, not on individuals, personalities, or character traits. Stay calm but make it quite clear, as firmly and often as seems to be required, that bullying or harassment are not acceptable in any circumstances and will not be tolerated.

If your organization has a formal code of practice or ethics, a corporate values statement or a relevant workplace policy you might discuss how it applies. If such codes or policies do not yet exist, now might be a good time to begin to develop one, at least within your team.

If you don’t feel able to do this, bring in an external facilitator to help you.

Handling such a situation well can even build a stronger team – the sort of team with a positive commitment to positive shared values, that works together to achieve your vision and goals, and that is the hallmark of a good leader.

For details about how to coach individuals to better behavior see here:

And watch out for my next article where we’ll look at what you can do if you are the one being bullied.

Dealing with Bullying at Work

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

One of the most toxic additions to any workplace is the bully. If you work with (or for) a bully, or one of the people on the team you lead may be a bully it is important to handle the situation carefully yet assertively.

In this series of articles I want to share some tips for how to deal with workplace bullying successfully.

First let’s look at what is bullying or harassment?

A bully abuses any power they have over less powerful people. You will often feel oppressed, humiliated, weak, and belittled after talking to a bully. In addition, you will typically feel worse about yourself. At the same time you may feel obliged to laugh at the comments that are being made about you or to you, even thought they are hurtful or not true.

A bully may be someone who consistently dishes out venomous personal remarks, who takes delight in ruining your day with seemingly harmless yet cutting statements, who takes credit for your work, constantly threatens you with dismissal or demotion, or who is simply rude, aggressive, and pushy. The bully often leaves people feeling threatened and demeaned.

Bullying and harassment might be:

  • physical (being hit, bumped, tripped, pinched),
  • verbal (humiliation, name-calling, teasing, putdowns),
  • psychological (intimidation, sabotage, coercion, manipulation, threats, gestures, being watched or stalked),
  • social (embarrassment, smear campaigns, being ignored or having rumors spread about you)
  • or sexual (physical, verbal or nonverbal sexual conduct).

Bullying and harassment often happens out of sight of other authorities, leaders or managers and is typically repeated over an extended time.

However not everyone who displays these sorts of behaviors is a workplace bully. An isolated incident doesn’t equate to bullying.

Just because someone tells you they don’t like something you did or didn’t do, or you don’t like the way they communicate with you doesn’t make them a bully.

Even if someone yells at you in frustration it doesn’t necessarily mean they are a bully. It may just mean they lack the emotional maturity to express themselves more professionally or they tend to overreact to a stressful situation. Goodhearted people can make mistakes. While issues like these still need to be addressed, they aren’t as corrosive to your workplace culture as bullying or harassment can be.

A bully, on the other hand, intends to intimidate, dominate and disempower and they do it consistently and repeatedly.

The negative effects of bullying and harassment are well known and definitely serious.

Bullying frequently leads to significant effects on work performance, illness, absenteeism and low team morale. In extreme cases post traumatic stress disorder and even suicide have occured.

Bullying can’t be ignored or overlooked. If you are a manager, team leader or business owner, you have at least a moral (and in many places a legal) obligation to ensure your workplace is free from bullying or harassment.

In a few days time we’ll look at how you should tackle bullying when it is happening in your team or workplace…

Meanwhile have a look at some of these Stress and Productivity Resources:

More on team leadership in business and sport

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

Yesterday we looked at some of the lessons from successful sporting teams that we can apply to business and work teams, including:

  • Different Types of Competition
  • The Power of Discipline, and
  • The Importance of Teamwork and Trust.
  • Today I will share three more valuable insights you can apply from high performance sporting teams to fostering high performance business and work teams.

    A Common Goal:

    Share your vision with your team members and encourage them to commit to realising it. Look for any challenges that your team members are facing when they try to achieve their best. Ask your team members what you can do to help and empower them to do whatever it is they do best to help you achieve your vision and milestones.

    It is also important to ensure that everyone on your team really wants to be there. It’s very difficult to create a cohesive team if you have a reluctant member undermining the vision everyone else is trying to achieve. When someone has the skills and the commitment, both to the vision you are trying to realise and to the team that is trying to achieve it, you will create a powerful force that guarantees success.

    Individual Needs:

    No quality sporting coach puts every member of a team through exactly the same training regime. So be conscious of the individual needs of all members of your team.

    Find out why individual team members are actually working for you. This will help you identify specific ways to help them develop their skills or make best use of their existing skills and work preferences. You may even find that they would fit better into a different role all part of your organisation.

    Get to know everyone on your team well enough to understand exactly what their personal picture of success looks like to them and what qualities, skills and experiences they bring to the team. This will help you to help them to be more motivated in their contributions to the team and to achieving your company’s vision.


    Finally, make it a habit to ask all your team members for their ideas and opinions. No one, including you, has a monopoly on good ideas. And in fact your team members who are working at the coalface can often understand the situation from a unique perspective, generating useful insights and opportunities for improvement.

    When you ask team members for their ideas you are acknowledging their personal value to the team and offering a special type of recognition that workers appreciate immensely.

    By being open to team members’ suggestions you will not only achieve an improved outcome, you will be building a more motivated and successful team.

    Kerrie Mullins-Gunst specializes in helping leaders and managers develop all the skills they need to mentor manage and lead. Check out this simple yet powerful tool to improve employee performance and boost workplace motivation:

    Team leadership in business and sport

    Monday, June 28th, 2010

    All the excitement of the World Cup means there’s a lot of talk at the moment about sports teams, both winners and losers. Even if you don’t follow the World Cup, you probably follow some sort of sport, and sporting teams offer some useful insights for workplace teams. So let’s have a look at a couple of useful team and leadership lessons that can be drawn from the world of peak performance and successful sports.

    Types of Competition:

    One of the key aspects of all sports is competition. Yet there are a range of types of competition that apply in different sports, and different individuals prefer different sports that reflect these various types of competition.

    In sports competition may either be against yourself, another individual or another team. In business we are often competing against other businesses for a client or customer or at other times we are competing against ourselves to improve our own (individual, work group or corporate) performance. So it is important to remember that some individuals on your workplace team may be more motivated by a different style of competition.


    In both business and on the sports field discipline plays a key part in success. A long-term commitment to developing all the skills that are required to succeed is the foundation of both sporting and business success. Individuals and teams who have the commitment to see through a task will enjoy more success than others.

    Sticking to your plan might sometimes seem dull and boring, but it will set you apart from all your competitors in both business and sport.


    As in many sports, in the workplace successful teams only develop when team members know how to work with others and are willing to trust one another.

    As a team leader in the workplace it is important that you accept the sorts of responsibilities that the head coach would have in a winning team. You need to check to be sure that all members of your team fit into the team, respect one another, work together well and support each other.

    Any signs of poor teamwork must be addressed immediately.

    Tomorrow I’ll share with you three more team leadership lessons we can apply in the workplace from the world of sport…

    Kerrie Mullins-Gunst specializes in helping leaders and managers develop all the skills they need to mentor manage and lead. Check out this simple yet powerful tool to improve employee performance and boost workplace motivation:

    Leaders under stress

    Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

    Last week I was fortunate enough to have a few days break after a conference on Australia’s beautiful Gold Coast. We caught up with family and friends we hadn’t seen for some time and I’m returning to work today feeling very relaxed.

    Then I looked at my diary and I realised that another month is almost gone. I have so many things to do before the end of the month and my stress levels start to rise just a little, before I even have to handle anything unexpected, difficult or challenging…

    It got me thinking. Stress is such a part of any leadership or management role it’s easy to forget what a stress free life can be like. But the question is, is that a bad thing?

    There’s no doubt that a bit of stress helps us to function at a higher, or more intense level and therefore get more done than usual. I certainly got more done the day before I left for my conference and short break than I would have, if I had not been under the pressure of a deadline.

    Planes just don’t wait for us to finish one more thing, do they?

    And there probably wouldn’t be any need for the management or leadership role in organisations, if there weren’t the sort of problems and challenges that can lead to stress.

    But there’s also no doubt that higher and higher stress levels can be unhealthy, unsustainable and unproductive – and that’s what too many leaders and managers struggle with, every day at work.

    Being told day in and day out to do more and more with less and less is undoubtedly stressful.

    If that’s your reality, I know it won’t help to tell you to “relax and take a holiday”. Much as you might want to and know you really should, I know it’s not always possible – especially when you are most stressed.

    Yet you and I both know that you owe it to the people on your team to know how to manage your stress levels so you are productive rather than stressed out of control. If you allow your stress to get out of control you’ll begin to miss deadlines, forget critical things and struggle to cope with anything unexpected. In fact your productivity will drop.

    So what can you do? Well, there is plenty you can do to effectively manage your stress levels and help your team members to do the same. Here are three quick tips to help:

    * First, make sure you are quite clear on whether and why tasks really need to be done. As we are asked to do new things, it is important to constantly take the time to check whether the old tasks we are used to doing really still need to be done. Sometimes we cling to old tasks (maybe we are confident doing them or just enjoy doing them) even though they are no longer really required. If a task no longer needs to be done, or it can be done annually instead of monthly for example, that can free up significant amounts of time and reduce stress on everyone.

    * Second, even if you can’t take a whole week’s break, you can take a brief break to do something you enjoy. Walk around the block to clear your head. Take 20 minutes to listen to some music you enjoy. Enrol in a weekly exercise or stretch class. Take up painting or gardening. Borrow a neighbor’s dog and take it for a walk. In other words, doing something different for a short time can work magic in reducing your stress levels.

    * Third, make sure you really understand what stress is, how the different types of stress impact on performance and how to manage it yourself and for your people. Keep yourself motivated and don’t make doing tasks more stressful by procrastinating. These resources will help you to manage your stress and be more productive: Less Stress and Better Productivity

    Leaders who understand and work well with stress make better leaders. That link for some really helpful resources is:
    Check them out now.

    Leaders with Attitude and 13 Things

    Sunday, April 11th, 2010

    One of the secrets to becoming a leader who motivates others to follow you, is your attitude. As a leader, your attitude is catching. And no matter what else happens to us, we are always responsible for our own attitude.

    Cultivate the right attitude and motivating others to follow your lead becomes easier and easier.

    While there are a number of dimensions to what makes the ‘right’ attitude for a leader, one of them is undoubtedly to appreciate what people do for you and what you already have.

    I have made a simple video about things I’m thankful for to help prompt you to think about your attitude and how your attitude can help you to motivate the people on your team.

    The right attitude is one of the most motivating and powerful things you can cultivate.

    Add a comment below to share the things you are thankful for.

    The Ultimate Team and Leadership Challenge

    Friday, March 26th, 2010

    What does this video tell you about teams and leadership and rising to the challenge?

    As I watch it I see so many lessons about what we do – and don’t do – in the workplace when we are leading a team to achieve great results like this…

    Could you motivate your team to do anything this complex – in one take? What would it take?

    Watch this amazing video and share your thoughts and comments below. I’ll hunt out some prizes for the best contributions next week.

    - – - – -

    PS. I have now sent a small gift to everyone who commented, to say thanks for your thoughts. (27 April)

    The Workplace Motivation Message is Simple

    Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

    Recently I attended a function where I observed two mothers trying to control their exuberant young children with totally different results.

    The first mother was clearly exasperated by the unruly behavior of her young children. For the entire hour she told them: “Don’t be so naughty.” “Don’t run away.” “Don’t kick the door!” “Don’t hit your sister.” “Don’t make so much noise.” And all of her instructions resulted in more and more of each behavior she chastised them about.

    She was struggling, and the children were clearly not used to being at an event where they needed to sit quietly and pay attention. They didn’t know what to do or how to do it, so they entertained themselves. And they did it very well, even if it embarrassed their mother.

    There were times when the second mother needed to address her young children’s behavior too. But she did it differently and with a very different result.

    She drew her children’s attention to the program and pointed to what was happening on stage. She quietly explained where to look, why things were happening and encouraged them to participate when it was appropriate. She showed them how to not just listen, but to watch and listen carefully, so they would hear particular things.

    In other words, she focused on telling her children what they should do, rather than what not to do. And it was clear that as her children steadily began to learn what was going on and how to be a part of it, they even began to enjoy it.

    Now I’m not suggesting that her children were perfect – there were times they were distracted too – but by the end of the function it was clear they learned a lot about how to participate in such an event. They had been shown what was expected of them and what to do, rather than just being told what not to do.

    So, what does this story have to do with workplace motivation, you ask?

    Well first let me share another quick story with you… A few days ago a friend commented that her husband had come home from work happier than she had seen him in ages. It turns out that something exceptional had happened. For the first time in many years his boss had commented on his work, and the feedback was what a great job he always does. (And yes, you read that right – for the first time in many years…)

    Do you see a pattern related to motivation in the workplace here? Managing people (employees or young children) can be challenging, time consuming and, at times, stressful. When you don’t offer any feedback, even the best people feel demotivated and taken for granted. If the feedback you offer is always negative or corrective, without any guidance about how to do what is required, it will do little to motivate people or improve results.

    It’s easy to expect good work from people and take it for granted when you get it. But when good work is not acknowledged in the workplace, motivation shrivels up and even your best workers begin to produce the minimum acceptable results rather than their best work.

    The workplace motivation message is simple: Focus on showing people what you expect of them in a positive way and notice when they do what you want.

    For more ways to improve employee performance and boost workplace motivation check out this powerful tool: from Kerrie Mullins-Gunst.

    Kerrie specializes in helping leaders and managers develop all the skills they need to mentor manage and lead.

    Workplace Motivation for Leaders

    Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

    I recently heard a story about a certain manager who argued that his role had nothing to do with motivating people.  Workplace motivation, he said, was the job of the Human Resources department!  

    I know you won’t be surprised to hear that I disagree.  What’s more, workplace motivation is one of the significant issues raised by many good managers, business owners and team leaders today. 

    Leading a motivated team is not only more productive, you will find it much more enjoyable and rewarding too.  Poorly motivated employees rarely function well as a team, and typically generate more stress for you than they do results.  So good leaders consider the impact of their actions on workplace motivation carefully. No one wants a demotivated workplace producing barely adequate outcomes and a stressful situation.  

    Here are three simple yet effective ways you can boost workplace motivation and morale: 

    1. Offer a Reward

    Rewards are motivating.  And although money is one type of reward, it is far from the only reward you can use. Frequently it’s not even the best reward to offer.  Exactly what rewards are most appropriate will vary from person to person and according your particular situation, but here are some ideas to consider.  

    For many people coaching them to develop new and better skills is a powerful and motivating reward. Encouragement, recognition, more trust or a promotion or new work title may be motivating to some of your people.  Likewise, for some more overtime, less travel, a special project or development opportunity or flexible work hours may help boost workplace motivation.  Once you start to think about it, and get to know your people well enough to know what they would appreciate, you will be able to think of a whole range of motivating rewards that are appropriate in your situation.  

    2. Listen to People

    Everyone likes to feel that their input and opinion is valued, respected and considered.  It takes only a moment – and an open attitude – to welcome input from each individual on your team. 

    Ask for their views and input.  Be genuinely willing to listen to people and you will see an amazing response from previously demotivated staff.

    3. Lighten up a Little

    Motivated employees enjoy their work.  Numerous studies have shown that people work harder, not less, when the workplace is a fun, happy and enjoyable place.  

    As leader, you get to set the tone for a happy workplace.  Take a moment to smile at people and ask after their family, hobbies or interests.  Encourage some team social activities.  Take the team out for coffee or bring in a cake to celebrate an achievement.  

    We spend many hours each day in the workplace.  Part of your role as the leader is to ensure your team are motivated to actually be there and contribute fully to reaching your team goals.  

    Believe me, everything will be easier for you as the leader if people enjoy actually being there, rather than dread coming to work each day.  

    Good leaders accept responsibility for workplace motivation and do what they can to foster it. When you apply these three simple concepts in your workplace you will quickly build a motivated, committed and successful workforce – and a pleasant place to work.

    For more ways to improve employee performance and boost workplace motivation check out this powerful tool: from Kerrie Mullins-Gunst. Kerrie specialises in helping leaders and managers develop all the skills they need to mentor, manage and lead. 

    Change by choice, chance or crisis?

    Friday, May 29th, 2009

    As the story goes, some people make things happen, some have things happen to them and others just say ‘What happened?’.

    But when things happen, changes follow. There are probably three main drivers behind most of the changes we face in business, and in much of life: Choice, Chance and Crisis.

    Choice: Some people and organisations choose to change in a way and at a time of their own making. These people or organisations have prepared for the change, explored all their options and probably even created the climate in which their intended change is most likely to be successful. They choose to change.

    Chance: For others, luck has more to do with their decision to change something. Perhaps an unusual event, a chance meeting, or a decision by someone else, created the circumstances which encouraged a change. An opportunity has fallen in their lap, but at least they recognised it and capitalised on it.

    Crisis: For a third group, impending crisis is the only thing which will cause any change. Their experience of change is rarely good because of their reluctance to recognise risks or opportunities early enough to prepare and make the best of a situation. By the time this group considers change, they have little choice and few options.

    Think about whether you tend to change through choice, chance or crisis. Are you waiting for a crisis before you make inevitable changes? Are you actively looking for opportunities? Are you exploring all your options, and planning and preparing to change by choice?

    As Louise L Hay said: “Change is usually what we want the other person to do.”

    Change Quick Tips

    Practise ‘change by choice’ on some of the small things in your life. Choose something different for breakfast, travel to work a different way, or listen to another style of music for a week.

    Think about how you felt when you chose to change. Were you more willing to experiment? Did you put some effort into making the right choice? Did it help to know you could always choose to change again?

    Make some serious changes. Think about what you are just tolerating in your life. What planning and preparation can you make to help you change successfully?

    Successful leaders are persistent

    Monday, March 2nd, 2009

    “I’ve missed more than 9000 shots in my career.  

    I’ve lost almost 300 games.

    26 times I’ve been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed.  

    I’ve failed over and over and over again in my life.  And that is why I succeed.”

    Michael Jordan

    Beating Stress at Work

    Monday, September 1st, 2008

    Thank you for your kind comments about our Stress Free Course at – If you haven’t signed up yet, it’s still available – at no cost to you as a subscriber of Leading Well.

    Once you do sign up, remember you must “Confirm your request for information” to receive the course. (This helps to protect you from someone else using your email address.) All you have to do is click the link in the confirmation message that I sent to you – Don’t skip this step or you will miss out on your information.

    In this issue of Leading Well I’ll share one of the best techniques to instantly relieve stress at work. For more great ideas on how to overcome the stress of leading and managing people head on over to and claim your free course.

    Kind regards, Kerrie


    Beating Stress at Work

    Nobody enjoys it when stress gets out of hand at work. In fact unreasonable stress can be one of the main reasons why good staff move on to other jobs. If it’s you that’s under pressure from stress in your workplace you need to know how to relieve stress effectively before you snap – or snap someone’s head off!

    After practicing this, you should be able to not only avoid making a stressful work environment worse, but also handle the stressful situations that do arise more effectively.

    Your best “instant” technique for relieving stress as soon as it strikes you while you are at work is conscious slow breathing. It can be done without leaving your office or desk, it is easy to learn and it can have almost immediate effects.

    All you need to do is to breathe deeply and slowly, so that you are totally focused on your breath and nothing else. Focus on how you breathe in and out, slowly and deliberately. When you do it well, your concerns and tension will disappear after just a few breaths and you will be calmer and more able to deal with the challenges you are facing.

    This breathing exercise can also be helpful at other times too, but you will find it instantly eases your tension if the situation is stressful. And you really can practice it easily while you are at work.

    More on how to be stress free below:



    “Stress is an ignorant state. It believes that everything is an emergency. Nothing is that important.”

    Natalie Goldberg


    The Leading Well Bottom Line

    Stress is a central part of the life of every manager and leader and how well you manage stress has a huge impact on your own life, your family’s happiness and the success of your team.

    When you can manage stress effectively, not only will you enjoy your life and your role more, you will be able to ‘take charge’ and lead people through situations that others find distressing or even confronting.

    Our latest publication from the Leadership Skill Center is ‘Managing Stress – How to Break Free from a Stressful Life‘. In this 50-plus page ebook you will learn:
    * What is stress and how it can manifest itself in your life
    * How to identify all the stressors in your life
    * The right – and wrong – ways to react to stress and control it’s impact
    * How to break free from a stressful life.

    For more details visit:

    And don’t forget to claim your Be Stress Free Course today at

    Are Your Goals Effective?

    Monday, July 21st, 2008

    Over the next few weeks we will hear a lot of elite athletes talk about the goals they set for themselves and how they worked to achieve them during the Olympics.

    In this issue of Leading Well I want to remind you of the power of goals and how much more we can achieve when we set effective goals.

    If you are already a member of the Leadership Coaching Club there is a full program to assist you to set and achieve your goals, both at work and at home. Check it out if you haven’t already done so. You can login in to the Leadership Coaching Club at
    using your email address and password – or you can join now at

    Kind regards, Kerrie



    The fundamental skill of setting a goal is an open secret known by top-caliber athletes, successful businessmen and businesswomen and all the top achievers in every different field.

    Setting effective goals gives you short-term and long-term motivation and focus. Goals help you focus on the acquisition of any required knowledge and they help you to plan and organize your resources and your time so that you can get the best out of your life.

    Goals are so effective that many organizations require managers and team leaders to set them. Yet many of us still don’t use them to their full potential.

    Setting clearly defined short term and long term goals will enable you to measure your progress and achieve personal satisfaction once you have successfully met your goals.

    Charting your progress will also enable you to actually see the stages of completion leading to the actual realization of your goals. This eliminates the feeling of a long and pointless grind towards achieving your goal. Your self-confidence and level of competence will also improve as you will be more aware of your capabilities as you complete or achieve your goals. The basics of goal settings will involve deciding what you really want to do with your personal and professional life and what short term and long term goals you need to achieve it. Then you have to break down goals into the smaller and manageable targets that you must complete on your way to achieving your lifetime targets.

    Here are seven pointers that should be taken into consideration in setting your goals and achieving them:

    Your Attitude

    Attitude plays a very big role in setting and achieving your goals. You must ask yourself if any part of your attitude or your mind is holding you back from completing your simplest goals? If there are any parts of your behavior that are being a hindrance to achieving your goals this can cast your plans into disarray. If you do have problems in these areas then the immediate thing to do is to address your attitude.

    Manage Your Time

    Careers are made by good time management practice. A stalling career is often attributed to bad time management. Successful careers can require a lot of discipline from an individual in how you manage your time, so plan how far you want to go into your career and manage your time to ensure you do what is needed when it is required.

    Invest in Yourself

    Education is key in achieving your goals. If your goals require you to have a certain kind of degree or require a certain specialization or demand a certain skill to be developed, make plans and take action to get the appropriate education.

    Your family

    Your family should never be left out of your plans. If you are just starting out then you have to decide what relationships are important to you, if you want to be a parent or when you want to be a parent.


    Personal financial situations also play a major role in achieving your goals. Have a realistic goal on how much you really want to earn and what you will have to invest to achieve it. You also must be able to create plans or stages by which you will be able to reach your earning potential.

    Sports goals

    Physically gifted individuals may be able to achieve sports related goals like playing in the elite Basketball, Tennis or Football association. Determining your physical capabilities should be one of your priorities. Physical limitations may however be conquered with proper planning and training.

    Fun goals

    As the saying goes – ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’ – and this is very true, for hard-working Jills as well as Jacks. Giving yourself a little pleasure should be included into your

    More on how to set effective goals in the Quick Tips below:



    “There are two things to aim at in life; first, to get what you want; and after that, to enjoy it.”

    Logan Pearsall Smith (1865-1946)


    The Leading Well Bottom Line:

    You don’t have to do it all on your own. Join us in the Leadership Coaching Club and leverage off all the wisdom, insight and experience of dozens of guest experts, other participants and your mentor Kerrie Mullins-Gunst. See for details.



    * To start achieving your lifetime goals, set a quarter of a century plan, then break it down to five 5 year plans then break the next five years down again to 1 year plans, then 6 month plans then monthly plans, then weekly, then daily.

    * Then create a things-to-do list for the day.

    * Always review your plans and prepare for contingencies.

    The basics of goal settings should not be so difficult once you get to be familiar with them.

    * The Core Training Modules in the Leadership Coaching Club take you through a proven process for setting your direction, articulating effective goals and then taking the actions that ensure you achieve them. Join today and tap the power of setting goals that work for you in your personal as well as in your professional life.


    “I started with the Leadership Coaching Club when it first became available. My initial reaction was that there was some work that needed to be done. After getting into some of the material however, I’m impressed with the content. It’s practical, useful information that should serve as the foundation of anyone who strives to take on he mantel of leadership. Thank you for your efforts and please continue!”

    John Stefanski

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