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A Must Read! Integrating Leadership Development With Succession Planning

Download Ironstone’s research paper here!

Create An Immortal Succession Plan By Integrating Leadership Development With Succession Planning

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Simple Steps to Create an Effective Compensation Plan

falling dollarsHow do you create a compensation structure that is fair to all employees, attractive to new hires, creates excitement and loyalty amongst your team and engages their learning development while increasing productivity? Reinventing the wheel is not necessary, but creativity, communication and evaluation of your existing plan are essential.

In my years of creating compensation plans for organizations, I have found the overall goals of the firm lack a link to a compensation process. For example, one of my clients would like to establish their firm as “the best place to work in town”. I love the goal but found that it doesn’t link to any current processes.    When employees read this statement every week in their staff meeting, it is fruitless, stands alone and has become meaningless. Linking the goal to various processes, specifically a compensation plan, would benefit this firm across the board.

Creating an Effective Compensation Plan

Follow these steps to create an effective compensation plan.  Communicating your compensation plan is extremely vital. Communication provides team members with a thirst to stretch themselves to reach higher levels within the compensation structure; therefore increasing engagement, productivity and development.

Compensation Analysis

  • Perform a SWOT analysis of your existing compensation plan by studying the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats of your current structure.
  • Complete a cost analysis by focusing on your overhead and human capital costs. Determine the affordability of new hires if desired

Job Evaluations

  • Create an organizational flow chart or review and update your existing chart.
  • Review job descriptions and create, clean-up and re-align to match roles.
  • Determine roles for new hires if applicable.

Performance Management

  • Audit your current performance management system.
  • Establish goals expectations and incentives.
  • Collect and conduct 360 degree appraisals.
  • Analyze data.
  • Create professional development plans.

Compensation Plan

  • Integrate individual performance with compensation.
  • Base/Benefits/Incentives/Extras – If you haven’t read our blog  Compensation Conflict? What Employees Really Want, please do! You will find some great ideas on establishing your compensation plan.

Cost Analysis Update

  • Perform an overall cost analysis of your firm.

 When compensation plans are effectively communicated, morale and retention will improve significantly. DownloadIronstone’s Compensation Planning Checklist for use at your firm. 01.15.13IronstoneCompensationPlanningChecklist

 Question: What compensation challenges are you facing at your firm?

Let us know by leaving a comment! We want to hear from you!   

 

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Leadership Audit Checklist-Leaders Leave Legacies-4 Areas To Audit Your Leadership Legacy

Leadership

Are You A Steve Jobs or George Washington Leader?

“Faith In America’s Future” is the foundation theme for this year’s inauguration day on January 21, 2013. As we look ahead to Inauguration Day, we will most likely reflect on the November election and envision what our future holds and study the leadership qualities breathing within the leaders of our country.

True leadership leaves a legacy. Now is the time to audit your leadership style and align it with the legacy you will bestow.  Leadership styles certainly vary as evident when comparing style and leadership qualities between admirable leaders such as George Washington, the first President of the United States, and Steve Jobs, CEO of Apple. The two owned very different leadership styles, yet both left a legacy.

THE GEORGE WASHINGTON LEADER

George Washington

 “Although he lost most of his battles with the British, year after year he held his ragtag, hungry army together” – from the EDSITEment resource The American President.

What combination of qualities enabled George Washington to succeed as a leader and emerge as the most significant leader in the founding of the United States of America, to the extent of being called the “Father of the Country”? Resources tell us President Washington embodied experience and strategic thinking as well as being resourceful, quick witted, careful and both gentle and brutal. None of these qualities were cited as the most significant in the man who was able to lead through victory or defeat. Regarded as an indispensable man, his character was the most commonly cited quality, beyond his intelligence and ideas as he emerged to a supreme leader.

THE STEVE JOBS LEADER

Steve Jobs

Most every article you read recalls Steve Jobs broke every rule in leadership.

“He never mellowed, never let up on Apple employees, never stopped relying on his singular instincts in making decisions about how Apple products should look and how they should work”, New York Times columnist Joe Nocera told Forbes.

Jobs’ magnetism was found in his passion, innovation and creativity. Although his leadership style was not adduced by character, it is easy to say that Steve Jobs impacted many lives.

LEADERSHIP TODAY

 Perhaps in today’s world, a combination of George Washington and Steve Jobs would prove to be the epitome of leadership. While expertise and background cling to being vital, it is crucial to develop leaders capable to deal with dubiety and change, to lead and cultivate innovation and creativity, and to make and implement decisions quickly.

#1:  THE VISION OF LEADERSHIP

 Beginning with the end in mind serves as a vital principal to follow in every area of business and personal life. The same holds true in leadership. Knowing where you want to be and what you want to accomplish provides you with a map depicting how you will get there creating viable results.

Leadership requires wrapping surrogate assumptions and paradigms as part of a larger vision that enlivens new representation and inspiring a team to move to a shared vision by building trust.

Avoid setting blanket goals but strive to set specific and measurable goals, which will create increased employee engagement and motivation. Provide employees with an effectual vision easy to understand and concise along with an emotional aspect each team member can embrace.

Inspiring a team to move forward to a shared vision requires building trust: believing a team of people can modify all the challenges that congest creating a future quite different from the present. When your team refers to your firms’ vision, you will equip them with the ability to affirm how their work directly contributes to the big picture of success.

#2:  THE PERILS OF LEADERSHIP

 Effective leadership can be analyzed by reaction to accidental events through effective risk management.  Notable skilled leaders learn from occurrences, employ amended practices and protect team morale.   Effective leaders focus attention on finding a workable solution regardless of the source. Key actions to hone attention towards a solution rather than the sources require leaders to:

· Ask the right questions

· Consult with team members or a focus group

· Embody candor, courage and empathy

Admirable leaders grasp compiled knowledge from their team to recognize applicable solutions. Additionally, effective leaders consult with a mix of people and resources to procure alternative perspectives in order to balance and manage risk.

Regardless of the situation, reacting cogently to change is necessary by uniting a harmonious culture through modeling placid behavior.

Worthy leaders embody candor, courage and empathy through decisions made in the best interest of the firm, team members, clients and their community.

“…You can’t control people through policies, procedures and policing. You can only do it through a strong risk management culture and absolute integrity in all leaders.”

Leadership on Trial, A Manifesto for Leadership Development

#3:  A BAND OF BROTHERS IN LEADERSHIP – Lessons From The Front Lines

Without followers, a leader is simply one person with a goal or an idea. Realization of relying on the support, knowledge and skills embodied in a team is vital to noble leadership.  Successful followers are not idle robots waiting for commands, they understand the vision of the firm and freely support leadership without reservation. The most compelling team members are those that possess the ability to lead and follow.

Followers have the ability to assess situations and respond accordingly without requiring incessant need for direction and supervision.

Followers shift to leaders at different intervals throughout any given day. Being a great follower is just as important as being a great leader to achieve success.

Many leaders and managers have difficulty in refraining from a micromanagement leadership method. Despite the known benefits of delegation and yielding team members authority in departmental decision making, many managers have difficulty in surrendering power. Leaders need teams to acquire triumph. Relying on team members provides:

· Increased ownership in outcomes

· Improves productivity

· Aids in prioritization

 An example of incredible teamwork is displayed during The Crucible in the United States Marine Corp. The Crucible emphasizes trainee teamwork under stress. Recruits get 8 hours of sleep during a 54 hour exercise and are allowed very little food while undergoing tough physical activities. It isn’t long before the band of brothers are tired and hungry, but as they continue going they come to the realization they can call on reserves they didn’t know they had. By day two of the ritual, recruits realize they have to rely on each other.  No one gets through the crucible alone. When leaders support followers, ideas mold into form and visions become reality.

#4:  LEADERSHIP DILIGENCE

 Through challenge, impressive leaders will find opportunity. Without opportunities, development and new obligations are impeded.  In Max Lucado’s book, Great Day Every Day, he shares wisdom each of us can apply:

“You ought to be glad for the troubles on your job because they provide about half your income. If it were not for the things that go wrong, the difficult people with whom you deal, and the problems of your working day, someone could be found to handle your job for half of what you are being paid.

So start looking for more troubles. Learn to handle them cheerfully and with good judgement, as opportunities rather than irritations, and you will find yourself getting ahead at a surprising rate. For there are plenty of big jobs waiting for people who are not afraid of troubles.”

Symbolic occasions make you a better leader whether they take place at work or in your personal life and no matter where they happen they are an important part of leadership development. Link the occasion to a gift of opportunity; step up and be or do something you have never done before.

IN CONCLUSION

Leadership is innately about people which helps us to understand why the most experienced technical expert may not make the best leader in a given environment.

Leaders display the behavior that is compensated. Firms should ensure that performance management systems do not reward individuals who manage only by exercising their authority.

 Leaders are much more obsequious and are people you learn from rather than take orders from. Audit your leadership attributes in the four key areas discussed. Download Ironstone’s Leadership Audit Checklist Here:   01.05.13 Ironstone Leadership Audit Checklist

“Good leaders create a vision, passionately articulate the vision, and relentlessly drive the vision to completion.”

Michael C. Hyatt/Publisher, Former Literary Agent & New York Times best selling author

  We are curious!

Do you have a leadership program or process in place at your firm? Tell us about it!

Ironstone’s Vision is to forge and guide the personal and professional lives of entrepreneurs and business professionals alike to realize their full potential. Coaching and consulting allows us the opportunity to form an environment where success happens and goals are reached.

 Read more about our coaching and consulting program here >>

Start your transformation with Ironstone as your Partner for Performance

Contact Ironstone with your questions & let’s get started!

Have a question or comment for Ironstone? Contact us!>>

 

• Email us at info@ironstonehq.com
• Call our office at 800-917-8020
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STOP ROLLING THE DICE! 2013 Resolution: Focus on what NOT to do…

yes_no_maybe_red_dice_small

It’s hip to focus on getting things done; check marking and scratching things off the proverbial “To Do” list.  Often times, the biggest challenge is deciding which task to tackle first.  Even more often, we find ourselves either accomplishing nothing or only a little bit of everything.  As the saying goes, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while expecting different results; so why not try something different this year.  If you have trouble deciding what to do, try focusing on what not to do.  This list of 10 things not to do can help you get closer to successfully attaining your goals.

DO NOT get caught up in resolution overload-
Don’t try to change all of your unhealthy habits at the same time. Try to replace one unhealthy habit with a healthy one before moving onto the next. Set small, measurable and attainable goals that will yield feedback and results within a few weeks. Break goals down into daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly milestones.  Don’t expect them to take the full year to materialize.

DO NOT be owned by possessions-
Go through a “de-cluttering”. You may find that so much of your previous brain activity was run by stress, commitments and money that was put into vehicles, vices, up- grades and space to keep stuff working or just maintained.  Once you look critically at what you truly need, no longer will you need to tolerate all of these additional vacuums for your thoughts and moods.

DO NOT check e-mail constantly-
E-mails can certainly be an important and valuable tool, but the sad fact is people let their inbox rule their day. Set time aside daily where you respond to e-mails, typically later in the day. Earlier in the day you will want to do things that will move your business and daily goals forward. When you are answering e-mails, you’re in the reactive mode – you’re responding to other people’s needs.  Typically, when you respond to an e-mail it only needs to be a few short sentences. If you realize it will take longer, usually a quick phone call will handle it better than an e-mail. Most e-mails can wait 48 to 72 hours for a response. Do not e-mail first thing in the morning or last thing at night.  The former scrambles your priorities and plans for the day, and the latter just gives you insomnia. E-mail can wait until 10am; after you’ve completed at least one of your critical to-do items.

DO NOT promise to multi-task-
The truth is, there is great power in Single Tasking. If you multi-task, you tend to switch gears between what you should be doing and what you shouldn’t – the important vs. the useless tasks. Every time you shift gears to work on something else, you are not giving your priorities your full attention. It is very important to absorb yourself in one thing at a time; give it your fullest attention and complete it before moving on.

DO NOT carry your cell phone 24/7-
Take a break from daily digital leashes at least one day per week. Turn them off or, better still, leave them in the garage or in the car. Choose one day a week to leave your cell phone turned off and consider leaving it at home if you go out for dinner.

DO NOT let work become your life-
Work cannot fill the void of non-work relationships and activities. Your co-workers shouldn’t be your only friends. Schedule life and defend it just as you would an important business meeting. Never tell yourself, “I’ll just get it done this weekend”.  Parkinson’s Law states, “work expands to fill the time available for its completion” – if you give yourself a week to complete a two hour task,  (psychologically speaking) the task will increase in complexity and become more daunting so as to fill the entire week.  It may not fill the extra time with more work, but just stress and tension about having to get it done. By assigning the right amount of time to a task, we preserve time; which in turn will reduce the complexity of tasks to their natural state.

DO NOT work more to fix overwhelm-
If you don’t prioritize, everything seems urgent and important. If you define the single most important task for each day, almost nothing seems urgent or important. The answer to overwhelm is not spinning more plates — or doing more — it’s prioritizing and defining the few things that can really fundamentally change your business and life.

DO NOT allow yourself to work while hungry-
You will be less efficient; you will bring a negative energy to the things you do; you will become agitated and ineffective.  The key is to eat small meals with a balance of protein, healthy fats and high fiber every two to three hours.  These meals should sustain you until the next meal. This kind of eating strategy will help you feel good, give you energy and will keep you focused.

DO NOT focus on “lack”-
You are who you are and you have what you have, RIGHT NOW!  Hold on to this strongly and focus on it.  Remember that like begets like and so lack begets lack.  The energy you spend on what you don’t have can more effectively be spent on finding ways of getting what you want.  It is important to find POSITIVE thoughts/things/actions that inspire and help you move forward.

… and last but not least…

DO NOT stop making fun of yourself-
People who take themselves too seriously miss out on a whole lot of fun.

The preliminary step of prioritizing tasks is much easier once we remove the constant static and distractions that keep us from succeeding.  The important and attainable goals will reveal themselves by this process of eliminating your clutter-generating habits.  Once you have clarity on the tasks at hand, you can start setting goals that are not only SMART, but SMARTER…

Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, Timeframe, Evaluate, Reward

Question?  What resolutions have you made either personally or in your business life and

 how did you keep them or did you fall into the resolution trap?

Ironstone’s Vision is to forge and guide the personal and professional lives of entrepreneurs and business professionals alike to realize their full potential. Coaching and consulting allows us the opportunity to form an environment where success happens and goals are reached.

Read more about our coaching and consulting program here >>

 Start your transformation with Ironstone as your Partner for Performance

Contact Ironstone with your questions & let’s get started! 

Have a question or comment for Ironstone? Contact us!>>

 

• Email us at info@ironstonehq.com
• Call our office at 800-917-8020
• Connect with us: