Leaders should be Mentors & Mentees!

Leaders should be Mentors & Mentees!

Over the past year, I have enjoyed being a mentor, coach, student, and mentee. Actually, I believe it’s a pillar of leadership excellence. Life is a journey of continuous learning, teaching and giving back by paying it forward.

That’s a mouth full, let’s break them down one-by-one.

Being asked to mentor someone is such an honor and a privilege. To be a positude leader, you have to give back by seeking out a passionate staff member who is primed for advancement but doesn’t quite possess the skills or knowledge necessary to make the leap.

Being a mentor comes with real responsibilities, it is your duty to provide contend material and develop a pathways or curriculum from which your mentee can receive guidance and have the ability to ask great questions.

Equally or at times even more importantly, a positude leader should also be a mentee. Seeking input and guidance from the next level manager will prepare you for the next level. It’s an opportunity to have a professional sounding board to ensure you are on the right path and utilize the right tools at the right time.

To be a great mentee, you have to be engaged, set expectation and drive the mentor/mentee relationship. Be open, nimble and teachable at all times. Your mentor doesn’t always have to be right, they are to provoke thought that drives change and action on part of the mentee.

Paying it forward is a positude leaders way of paying respect to those who took the time to teach you. Passionate young people who deserve to advance can and will benefit from your time and if you do things well, they too will seek someone to mentor in due time.



Create little WINS for yourself!

Create little WINS for yourself!

Do you at times feel deflated, demoralized and slipping down the slippery slope of negativity? I certainly have found myself in this scenario and as most will tell you, I’m one of the most positive people you will ever run into. However, there are times that even my positude tank is running on fumes. I’m pretty sure you can relate to this as well.

Question remains, how can I break the cycle and fill up the tank? Breaking a negative cycle is very difficult, your brain is powerful and the dark side wants to play from time to time as well. Therefor, you will need to take an action, a premeditated step towards positive behavior.

Depending on the severity, you have two options available.

For a quick fix, which will work well for those who practice meditation often is to take a “Time Out” by taking five deep breaths in/out in cycles of 5 seconds each. Breath in over five seconds, hold five seconds and exhale over five seconds all the while focusing on the air that enters/exit from your lungs. If you find your mind drift, pull it back. Once focused, you can reset your brain to positude. It’s a great intervention to break a cycle of negative or repetitive thoughts.

For those who feel demoralized and deflated, its time to create a quick WIN! Use your creative mind and select something that is small enough in scope but meaningful to make a difference. For example, giving your office a six-month check up by sorting, setting order, shining, standardized and sustain for success or by teaching a class, creating a value added activity, etc. Something that can be done within a five-day work week. It will do wonders for your brain and mindset.

Take control over your own behavior, fill your positude tank when it runs low, create a WIN for yourself and/or for your team.


When DIRECT is too DIRECT?

When DIRECT is too DIRECT?

We learned an interesting lesson today while discussing “Cultural Intelligence”. It reminded me of the many interactions with different employees over the years whose origins covered all corners of the World.

I always thought that being direct and unequivocal was a positive approach until the day I was perceived to be too direct. What happened, I have acted like this dozens of times and have received positive feedback for being transparent and for saying  things the way they are.

What I learned that day many years ago that a single approach doesn’t work especially not in a multi-cultural environment where someone from Asia, South-America or even the Bronx might react very differently from each other.

Therefor, we need to adjust to the individual we are trying to communicate with. We need to take the time to understand our staff members as individuals from diverse backgrounds. We need to learn more about their religions, their customs and their preferred way of communicating.

Sometimes being direct is too direct and it will certainly have the opposite of your desired effect. Be thoughtful and mindful in your approach, don’t be reactive instead be responsive which requires conscious thought before commenting.

As a positude leader, make it your business to learn more about “Cultural Intelligence”, you will be a better leader because of it. Similar to “Emotional Intelligence”, it takes practice and continuous learning to be great at it.

Temper your directness to the individual to ensure your approach is balanced!


Resist Entitlement!

Resist Entitlement!

I believe hard work, dedication, passion and performance leads to advancement not a feeling of entitlement. Entitlement should actually be seen as a negative and hiring managers should resist the temptation to promote based on longevity.

Entitlement is synonymous with complacency. Being satisfied with the status quo. People who act entitled are frequently unaware of their own behaviors. They are consumed in their own role and believe that longevity will carry them to the next level of management.

If you want to be in a position for a promotion, you need to concentrate on aligning your performance measures to that of the organization. You need to stay hungry and on the leading edge of performance.  Be relentless in your approach and don’t under-estimate the power of positivity. Keep an eye on the football!

Be creative in your approach and don’t wait till the last day before a job is posted to be concerned about your performance and readiness for promotion. As a positude leader, you will continuously assess and reassess your position within your work environment. You need to lead, inspire and manage with clarity in a collaborative manner.

Don’t be held back by resistors of change, remain nimble and adjust accordingly. Work within your boundaries and create opportunities of shared learning and performance.

Be a proactive leader, concentrate on your customer and provide services with passion, love and error free. If you do this well, you will be noticed and likely be the last man or woman standing.


Are you set up for success?

Are you set up for success?

Do you ever wonder why things just don’t go the way you thought they would or fail all together? We have all been there at some point in time, if you have not, you have not tried hard enough. Have you ever taken the time to dissect what went wrong? All too often, we move on without a complete postmortem leaving us vulnerable to repeat our mistakes once again.

To be successful, one needs to add the right ingredients into the mix to produce the desired outcomes. Each step needs to be measured, meaningful and mindful. Let’s breakdown each step of the process;

  1. Building a unified vision with common understanding & common knowledge
  2. Recruit the Right People into the Right Roles
  3. Provide context that drives incentive using meaningful driving and outcome metrics
  4. Dedicate the right resources (creativity before capital)
  5. Be Accountable & Take action

Failure to take these steps each time, will lead to frustration, confusion, anxiety, false starts or slow beginnings.

Commitment to sequential steps and using a checklist to ensure each step is completed before proceeding will enhance your success rate tenfold. Personally, I strongly advocate to include both driver and outcome metrics that are updated weekly which will provide near real-time feedback on progress being made.

Be mindful, don’t rush through the process and you will set yourself up for success.


A Piece of the Puzzle!

A Piece of the Puzzle!

You have got to love the moment a plan comes together like a 1500 piece puzzle when you lay down the last piece to complete the picture. Exhilarating to say the least.

Rarely does this happen by chance, just like building a house, it takes lots of planning and design to ensure you end up with a product or process that is desired.

As Positude Leaders, it is your role to clearly define the vision by articulating and providing context behind each piece of the puzzle  to the right person for the job. These foundational steps will ensure that you meet your measurable objectives as long as you conduct regular check ins to ensure variation is minimal.

Let’s review the five principles of project management excellence;

  1. Right People, Right Roles
  2. Unified Vision with a common bond & common understanding
  3. Defining measurable driver metrics
  4. Be accountable to self, team and institution
  5. Take countermeasures when variation occurs

Just like a Pilot who completes a checklist 100% of the time before landing his/her aircraft, you too should develop a checklist for the puzzle you are going to build albeit a new process, a conference or a new building.

Don’t rely on assumptions or your memory alone, use your checklist to ensure and validate that each component is in sequence and has found its spot. Only then can you be assured of a successful outcome.

It truly takes a team and your positude leadership is vital to motivate, inspire and celebrate their successes along the way.


Living with Cancer!

Living with Cancer!

Tomorrow, July 22, 2017 is going to be a special day at NYC Health + Hospital/Jacobi. I don’t often write  about work related events however tomorrow’s “Living with Cancer” conference is an exception to the rule.

I’m incredibly proud of the opportunity to greeting over 250 cancer survivors tomorrow and welcome them to our beautiful campus in Bronx, NY.

Surviving is about “Body, Mind and Soul”, it is about the person as a whole not just the sum of its parts. It reminded me of a recent conversation where an elderly Italian lady said  to her nurse that her food was horrible. The nurse was taken aback and wanted to know what was missing from her meal. Her answer was more shocking however it was the most powerful statement I have heard in quite some time.

The elderly Italian patient expressed that her dinner lacked “LOVE”. It was delivered to her by a staff member without a greeting or a smile, her food tray was cold and looked less than appetizing.

You might think to yourself, what in the World does this have to do with “Living with Cancer”, in actuality, it has everything to do with “Living with Cancer”.

It can’t be just about the medicine or science, it has to do with true love, empathy and caring from all that make contact with patients who are fighting the fight of their lives.

Tomorrow, I will be so incredible proud of my staff, volunteers and conference organizers for having put their heart and souls into this event to ensure its success.

Tomorrow, I will give love and show great empathy towards those who receive care and provide care to patients living with cancer.

It’s about heart, about true love and caring.

Be mindful in your way of living, give a little love each day to those who need it most.