A Silent Prayer for our Heroes!

A Silent Prayer for our Heroes!

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Mental Wellness in the Workplace!

Mental Wellness in the Workplace!

When one is too many!

Over the past few months, I have observed some peculiar behavior that spiked my interest and need to explore a bit further.

Is it normal for staff to say on a Friday morning “TGIF” or “I need a shot of Tequila”? Is it an expression of happiness another week has gone by or signs of frustration that requires a stiff drink to drown the sorrows of the past work week!

One can never assume, as leaders, we need to be in tune with both our feelings as well as those of your staff.

There’s a fine line between drinking socially and drinking to forget which often can lead to addiction to whatever your drug of choice is.

When you observe behaviors or hear a worrisome descriptive, it time to take action. Sitting in waiting can lead to periling moments if early signs & symptoms of depression, burnout or addiction are ignored.

Taking action might just simply ask the person if all is OK. You can share your observations in a neutral environment with great empathy and without passing judgement.

For that matter, be honest with oneself, am I consuming alcohol, drugs, or using work, sex or gambling to overcome a deficit or to drown out your sorrows.

Listen to those around you mindfully and often you will pick up on nuances that provide clues to the underlying root cause albeit it stress at work or at home, a sick parent, bankruptcy or a tragedy of any kind.

Just because someone seeks a stiff drink on a Friday evening, doesn’t make that person an alcoholic however abusing anything will lead to precipitous situations.

Be supportive and understanding, be emphatic without crossing over into their personal space, be mindful in your listening and pick up on the  clues left behind. Intervene when necessary or simply reach to make sure all is OK.

My most important lesson which I learned the hard way myself, is to relate and not to compare.

If you are worried about someone, reach out to them today, don’t wait till tomorrow cause tomorrow might not bring a new day for them!

-W

Memorial Day, time for remembrance!

Memorial Day, time for remembrance!

One quiet morning, the sun is rising

In a land far away

Smoke is still lingering in mid-air

A battle won

Just over the horizon

The enemy now gone

We are picking up the pieces

Removing dog tags from a young dead soldier

The ultimate sacrifice

Another hero is now gone

A mother who has lost her son

A father lost his best friend

All to defend our freedoms

Before we go on with our daily lives

It’s time for remembrance

Remember that soldier that gave all

Remember that soldier that gave some

Remember that soldier who served

Memorial Day is about paying respect

Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force or Coast Guard

Its deserving of our respect and admiration

I challenge you today

Before you start your BBQ

Take a moment to remember

A silent prayer to give strength for those left behind

Strength and wisdom for those fighting for us today

I’m for one forever grateful

I shall never forget

-W

 

 

Is Loyalty a Currency?

Is Loyalty a Currency?

Over the many years of coaching, mentoring and being coached and mentored, questions regarding loyalty come up frequently however answering these questions is not that easy.

Loyalty on its own is something that is admirable, appreciated by most and can lead to advancement.  However loyalty can also hold you back and potentially lead you down a path of compromising your own moral values and ethical standards.

By nature, I’m a loyal person to both those I work for and with. I do however use a red line theory to assess if my loyalty continues to be earned or is deserving. Once a person lies or cheats, I’m instantly more skeptical and will pull back to reassess. One can earn back that loyalty by recognizing and/or apologizing for misgivings. I’m certainly a believer in second chances however loyalty is not something that should be taken lightly or taken for granted.

Your loyalty needs to be assessed regularly to ensure it is truly a two-way street. It’s not always about them but is should be about us. Give and take, transparency through good and bad, critical feedback and celebrating successes are all vital components of a loyal relationship with both your boss, peers and subordinates.

The most important kind of loyalty is to your patients without compromise. Our patients should be at the center of our focus and deserving of a deeply committed workforce for their personal gain. Your patients will return on your investment and commitment by making your facility their choice to receive exceptional care from cradle to grave.

Just like your patients, leaders have options as well, loyalty is a strong asset but know when that loyalty is compromised or taken for granted.

Loyalty is earned and it certainly is a currency that can lead to greener pastures!

-W

Failure creates Opportunity!

Failure creates Opportunity!

Do you get angry, upset, emotional even feel like a personal failure when a project you are working on doesn’t end up crossing the finish line in first place but rather in last place?

I think it is absolutely appropriate for alpha driven highly competitive leaders to go through several stages of grievance which could include any of the above deep personal feelings.

However, a leader who fails to learn from failure is doomed to repeat. A Positude Leader will embrace failure as an opportunity for improvement and growth even if they take some time to grief initially.

Complete a postmortem on all failed projects as there’s much to be learned. Using a tool such as “Root Cause Analysis” or a “Fish bone Diagram” will allow you to breakdown the process steps used to identify the single or multiple failure points.

Now, don’t stop once you have identified the failure point(s), its time to convert failure into an opportunity. Too often, we fall short in this department, most likely due to the fact that we lack the behavioral capacity to confront the human component. It’s time to be self-reflective and be a leader, complete a bi-directional critical feedback session in a safe environment to ensure that both the leader as well as the participants learn from these events.

Critical feedback is not a witch hunt but rather a growth opportunity. Same goes if you identify yourself as the failure point (likely due to lack of communication or not including the right people in the right roles), it might be time for a sincere apology to your team and hit the reset button for a do over but this time using the failures as opportunities for improvement.

Failure to recognize failure as an opportunity will ensure failure in the future.

Take advantage of the opportunity to learn therefor your failed project was not completely lost to failure!

-W

 

Serendipity does it really happen?

Serendipity does it really happen?

Looking for love in all the wrong places! I have searched all corners of the World but can’t find what I’m looking for. Only when I didn’t look, did it hit me squarely in the face, something that was meant to be, it was serendipity.

I think we all can relate to something like this in our personal lives albeit finding a husband, wife, or just a best friend.

Can it happen in your professional life as well? Simple answer would be “Of Course” and it does happen by chance on a regular basis.

If you go back into history, many medical discoveries were made not by design but by chance, an unintended side affect that cured diseases for which they had been searching but had not found one until now. Isn’t that the definition of serendipity?

In healthcare, although I suspect same holds through in many other industries, we tend to be somewhat predictable and conservative in our approaches. Creativity is thereby limited and in my opinion reduces the chances or finding valuable solutions you did not seek after.

If it is meant to be, it will be. However, allowing free thought and creativity in your solution approach to complex issues, sets your team up for greater success. It will also more likely spin off value not sought after because your team is not blinded or restricted in their approach.

If you sit idle or are too restricted in your approach, serendipity is unlikely to occur in your both personal and/or professional lives. Be mindful of the little things that are happening all around you each day, remain open minded to a potential solution and before you know it serendipity will have impacted you too.

Just don’t go searching for it!

-W

Are your actions Memorable?

Are your actions Memorable?

I’m sitting in my chair on overcast Saturday morning reflecting back on the past few weeks wondering if my actions are both memorable and making a lasting impact?

As adults, we only have the capacity to remember about 10% of what we learn, experience or do to any level of great detail. If is wasn’t for the billion + pictures taken daily, many memories would be lost.

With that in mind, are our daily activities memorable or simply routine? Likely, it’s more often just routine, doing what we do every day. How can we change that or when should we change it!

As leaders, when you determine that information you want to share needs to be remembered and make an impact, one better do something different that is memorable.

FUN is often memorable, doing something spontaneous like a surprise party is a great way to lock a memory into place. Using anchors, like celebrating special events will allow especially adults to remember events including specific details for years to come.

To make it memorable, one needs to do something different.

Let’s look at an example I experienced just this morning. My wife Erica, daughter Kim and few coworkers from White Plains Hospital decided to run a “Warrior Dash” aka “Mud Run” 5K including 12 obstacles to conquer . If if wasn’t for the last obstacle whereby runners had to crawl through a fifty yard mud pit, the post event pictures would have had less impact and therefore less memorable.

The mud pit became the story because the pictures were dramatic and it took literally hours to wash away every last bit of it. It was the talk of the “Warrior Dash”.

My best advice is to be mindful during your experiences allowing true memories to be developed. As a leader, find “FUN” anchors to have an impact on your staff.

-W