Do Not Create a Culture of Fear

fear“This world of ours… must avoid becoming a community of dreadful fear and hate, and be, instead, a proud confederation of mutual trust and respect.” —Dwight D. Eisenhower

For as long as we have had written history, we know that people in power have used fear as a tool to control others. While fear may be an effective means of exerting control, it shows desperation on the part of a leader who is at a loss for any other means of gaining influence. Fear creates a culture where gains and progress are short lived. Employees will not thrive in this type of environment and where employees do not thrive, neither do the leaders or the organization as a whole. So, do not create a culture of fear!

Fear

A culture of fear will result in dread. Employees who dread coming to work will never give 100% of their potential productivity. A culture of fear creates a destructive circle where all trust is lost. And, without trust you, as a leader, lose your ability to influence others and in turn must resort to fear as a means of control. By creating a culture of fear you are drastically reducing your options for getting the results you desire.

Hate

A culture of fear is a breeding ground for hate. Hate creates a contentious environment where energy and focus are diverted from the tasks at hand to hateful and disgusted feelings toward others. When you, as a leader, use fear to control others you pit one group against another in order to perpetuate the fear and trigger distrust. Hate and distrust eliminate any chance for effective teamwork and collaboration. By creating a culture of fear you are undermining your own leadership effectiveness.

You Have the Control

As a leader, you have control over the culture you chose to create. If fear is your only option to influence your employees, you need to seriously reconsider whether you are leadership material. A culture of fear only leads to distrust and hate. This is not a culture that encourages teamwork and the contribution of 100% of employee potential to achieving organizational goals. You have the control. Either you will create a culture of fear that will give you short-term results but will undermine your leadership in the long run or you will create a supportive, trusting environment where everyone wants to work together for the success of the whole.

© 2017 Elizabeth Stincelli

Liz Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the Founder of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations change attitudes, change communication dynamics, improve collaboration and problem-solving, engage employees, and strengthen organizational culture. Liz holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.

Learn more about Liz by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at stincelliadvisors@gmail.com.

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Where Does Your Power Come From?

DSCN7614“Power is like being a lady… if you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.” —Margaret Thatcher

By Elizabeth Stincelli, DM

Sources of Power

Power is the ability to influence the behavior of others, to overcome resistance, and to get people to do things they may not otherwise do. There are two main bases of power: positional power and personal power. You can access these bases through several sources. You can possess positional power as either legitimate, reward, or coercive. Your personal power can be either expert or referent. Each of these forms of power can achieve differing degrees of effectiveness based on the specific situation you are facing.

Just as you use various leadership styles to motivate others and get things done, you are in a better position to influence others if you have access to different sources of power. So, where does your power come from?

Positional power

Positional power is based on your rank within the structure of your organization and is granted to you by someone who is your superior. This form of power is task oriented and focused on giving orders without asking subordinates for their input or ideas. Much of its effectiveness is dependent on your ability to either reward or punish those who work under you. Use of positional power often results in low work satisfaction, lack of commitment, high job stress, high turnover, and even sabotage.

Legitimate power

Legitimate power is a form of positional power that can also be referred to as formal authority. This source of power relies solely on holding a position of responsibility. With legitimate power, you have the right to command others based on your position within the structural hierarchy of the organization.

Reward power

Reward power is a form of positional power that is based on your ability to control tangible benefits such as parking spaces, flexible work schedules, promotions, or bonuses. Reward power operates on the desires of others. When you have the authority to determine who will receive rewards or eliminate unpleasant penalties, you have reward power.

Coercive power

Coercive power is a form of positional power that is based on your ability to punish, discipline, or withhold rewards when subordinates do not act in accordance with commands or requirements. Coercive power operates on other’s fears. When you have the authority to determine and deliver punishment or withhold desired rewards, you have coercive power.

Personal power

Personal power is based on individual qualities. It is not necessarily given by superiors, but instead, by subordinates themselves. This form of power is relationship oriented. Personal power is held by individuals who behave in ways that motivate and inspire others. They create a supportive organizational environment where they recognize and acknowledge the individual needs of others. They are active listeners who encourage two-way communication and focus their energy on helping others grow. Use of personal power usually results in higher motivation and productivity, lower stress levels, and stronger commitment.

Expert power

Expert power is a form of personal power that stems from the unique expertise, specific knowledge, or skill set of an individual. If you possess expert power, you influence others because you have specific qualities and proficiencies that they value. You are the go-to person for advice. You are an expert as solving problems or performing tasks.

Referent power

Referent power is a form of personal power that stems from an individual’s charisma and reputation. It is derived from personal characteristics that result in admiration from others. If you possess referent power, you have the ability to influence others based on your charisma and reputation. People like you and admire your accomplishments. They believe in your causes and see you as a role-model. People trust you and follow you willingly.

Where Does Your Power Come From?

Leadership is influence and power is the tool that gives you the ability to influence the behavior of others. Both positional and personal power can be effective in specific situations. The task oriented nature of positional power is effective at accomplishing short-term, production oriented goals but can have a negative effect on job satisfaction and motivation in the long run. Being relationship oriented, personal power builds a strong culture and increases productivity.

It is important to evaluate and understand your sources of power. Which one will work best based on your current situation and goals? Which one will serve you best in the long-run? By answering these questions, you will become more effective at influencing others.

So, where does YOUR power come from?

© 2015 Elizabeth Stincelli

Liz Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the CEO of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations engage employees and improve organizational culture. Liz holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.

Learn more about Liz by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at stincelliadvisors@gmail.com.

 

Four Reasons You Need to Become a Servant Leader

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“The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality. The last is to say thank you. In between, the leader is a servant.” —Max de Pree

By Elizabeth Stincelli, DM

Servant Leadership

Leadership is a privilege and may say more about your character than any other action you might take. What makes servant leadership different than any other form of leadership? Servant leaders focus on meeting the needs of others rather than gaining fame, fortune, and power for themselves. They recognize that every employee has value. They care about everyone who interacts with the organization. They listen to and respect those they work with. To be a servant leader, a heart and mind for service has to be ingrained in your core values. Here are four reasons you need to be a servant leader.

Influence

Henry Drummond believed, “The people who influence you are the people who believe in you.” Leadership is based on an ability to influence. Servant leaders influence others based on the building of trusting and respectful relationships. They show employees that they believe in them. Their leadership builds consensus and collaboration. Servant leaders understand that everyone needs to be encouraged and truly cared for on an individual level. They know that people can accomplish amazing things when they are inspired by a purpose beyond themselves. Servant leaders do right by their people, and their people do right by the organization. These leaders put themselves where they can influence by doing the most good for those they lead and by giving others something to believe in.

Empowerment

Bill Gates tells us, “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” Servant leaders provide the support system and resources that employees need to do their jobs and then give them control over their own work. They are the opposite of command and control leaders; they lead by empowering, encouraging, and serving. Their aim is to equip and bring out the best in others. Servant leaders help others become engaged so that they can make their own positive impact. When employees feel empowered, they take ownership of their work; this ownership, improves morale, productivity, and quality.

Example

Jeffrey Gitomer explained, “Management’s job is to convey leadership’s message in a compelling and inspiring way. Not just in meetings, but also by example.” You are setting the leadership example. Servant leaders share their knowledge, help others in any way they can, and give of their time and resources to everyone. Their humble, selfless example of leadership builds teams of individuals who also want to be of service to others. This service brings people together and creates a unity that is inspiring, productive, and engaging.

Strengths and weaknesses

Zig Ziglar advised us, “Try to look at your weakness and convert it into your strength. That’s success.” You have strengths, but you also have weaknesses. Servant leaders recognize where they are best able to help others, and where others are best able to help them. They use their strengths to meet the needs of others. And, they provide the tools and learning opportunities needed for employees to grow their own strengths and abilities. Servant leaders serve and support behind the scenes, allowing employees a sense of accomplishment and control.

Become a Servant

Making it your primary role to serve others is both satisfying and productive. Becoming a servant leader shows strength of character. It builds strong relationships and develops servant leaders throughout your organization. Becoming a servant increases your influence, empowers employees, sets an inspiring example, and allows you to focus on serving where your strengths lie.

What can you do to start serving today?
© 2015 Elizabeth Stincelli

Elizabeth Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the CEO of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations engage employees and improve organizational culture. Elizabeth holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.

Learn more about Elizabeth by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at stincelliadvisors@gmail.com.

The Four I’s of Leadership: Inspiration, Influence, Innovation, and Impact

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“Leadership is not about a title or a designation. It’s about impact, influence, and inspiration. Impact involves getting results, influence is about spreading the passion you have for your work, and you have to inspire team mates and customers.” Robin S. Sharma

By Elizabeth Stincelli, DM

Leadership

While we may be able to make a list a mile long of factors that play a role in effective leadership, you will be well on your way if you can nail down the four I’s of leadership; inspiration, influence, innovation, and impact. These are key factors that will determine your ability to be effective in any other aspect of leadership. Leadership isn’t about ideas; it’s about making things happen. Focus your attention and energy on the four I’s of leadership and watch what happens.

Inspiration

John Quincy Adams said, “If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader.” A leader inspires and motivates colleagues. They can spark the passion and creativity that encourages others to accomplish amazing things. Inspiration is the beginning of everything else; seek it at every turn and in every corner. Use your inspiration to pursue something you believe in; use it to make things happen and to inspire greatness in others. Let your inspiration be the spark that lights a wild fire.

Influence

John Hancock explained, “The greatest ability in business is to get along with others and to influence their actions.” Influence is how you get things done as a leader. In order to influence others you must build trusting relationships and show genuine concern on an individual level. Be a role model of accountability, perseverance, and courage. Be respectful in all of your interactions. Earnestly motivate your employees to accomplish noteworthy tasks and provide recognition rather than seek it. Become a good listener, then follow through and follow up. Share your wisdom and be transparent in your words and actions. When you become someone who employees look up to, you will have the influence you need to lead.

Innovation

William Pollard believed, “Learning and innovation go hand in hand. The arrogance of success it to think that what you did yesterday will be sufficient for tomorrow.” Where will your success come from tomorrow? As a leader, you must focus your resources on challenging the status quo and helping others innovate. Reach across your organization for new and innovative ideas; fresh perspectives inspire fresh thinking. Leverage the disruptive opinions and opposing points of view you find in your organization to generate great ideas and question deeply held beliefs and assumptions. Provide a safe environment where employees can experiment and fail, then learn from that failure. Remember, innovation is never an end; it’s only a step in a continual process.

Impact

Sean Parker tells us, “I definitely wanted to earn my freedom. But the primary motivation wasn’t making money, but making an impact.” Ultimately, leadership is about getting results. Your leadership is not about you, it’s about creating a culture of accomplishment. It’s about making an impact by interweaving connections, challenges, and creative situations. Recognize that your leadership will have an impact, whether good or bad, on everyone who interacts with your organization. Leadership is about people; awaken in others the belief that they can accomplish extraordinary things and make them feel valued. And then, cultivate leadership in others; leave a legacy of impacting future leaders in such a positive way that they, in turn, will have the same impact on others.

Your Turn

According to Lao Tzu, “A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves.” As a leader, your value will be determined, in part, by the four I’s of leadership. Are you an inspiration? Are you able to really influence others? Do you encourage innovation by dedicating time, support, and resources? And, are you making a positive impact? Four simple I’s that, if used correctly, will lift your employees and your leadership.

© 2015 Elizabeth Stincelli

Elizabeth Stincelli is passionate about recognizing and inspiring the leader in each of us. She is the CEO of Stincelli Advisors where she focuses on helping organizations engage employees and improve organizational culture. Elizabeth holds a Doctor of Management degree with an emphasis on organizational leadership.

Learn more about Elizabeth by visiting her website, stincelliadvisors.com and connect with her on Twitter @infinitestin, Google+, and LinkedIn. You can contact her by email at stincelliadvisors@gmail.com.