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  • 3 Important Things Great Leaders Do Every Day

    05/23/16 10:00 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers, News | Leave a Comment
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    Want to get more done? Inspire your team to greatness? Build a stronger organization?

    Oh, and do these things EVERY DAY?

    Develop better leadership habits.

    It makes sense. Great leaders are consistent and disciplined in their practices. They’ve acquired habits which improve their effectiveness and drive their success, every day.

    Thankfully, nobody has a monopoly on great leadership habits. With sustained effort (and a focus on the right behaviors), you too can become an even better leader. Where should you start? We’re glad you asked. Below, Exact Staff shares three important things you should do every day to get more from your people – and deliver better results for your organization:

    Over-Communicate

    Communication breakdowns lead to confusion and conflict, yet they’re one of the biggest issues leaders face. The good news? Small tweaks to your current habits can yield big benefits for your entire team. Here are a few tips:

    • Ask for more feedback. Communication is a two-way street; you need honest input from your staff as to what’s working (and what’s not) to build trust and become better at your job.
    • Provide all the information employees need up front. And then some. You’ll prevent mistakes, stalls and frustration – while making your employees’ jobs much easier. By over-communicating, you’ll also minimize the amount of follow-up emails and calls you receive – which will free up more of your time and improve your focus.
    • Choose the right medium for the message. Consider the importance and level of complexity of your message when deciding how you’ll share it. Then err on the side of caution. Face-to-face conversations do take more time and effort, but sometimes it’s the best option for sensitive issues or discussing important information.

    Bounce Back

    The best leaders are resilient – they respond quite effectively to everyday disruptions and conflicts that derail more rigid managers. Rather than reacting to negative work situations with distress, fear or anger, resilient leaders are able to overcome problems and quickly bounce back by:

    • Managing their strong feelings and resisting impulses;
    • Making realistic plans they can effectively execute;
    • Focusing on solutions.

    How can you make resilience a habit? If you’re like most leaders, you have opportunities to put it into practice every day. When problems (large or small) arise:

    • Prevent yourself from reacting. Anger and fear are natural reactions – but not the most effective ones for you as a leader. Practice restraint, check your emotions and act intentionally.
    • Be fully present. Work on improving your ability to face the facts, no matter how difficult or scary they feel. Be realistic about what you’re up against, but optimistic that you’ll be able to find a solution.

    Delegate Effectively

    If you’re like most professionals, you have more on your plate each day than you could ever realistically accomplish on your own. So don’t try! Great leaders start each day by examining their “to dos,” prioritizing their responsibilities, and then delegating non-critical activities.

    Want to make delegation a habit, but don’t have the internal resources? Give Exact Staff a call. We’re here to help you get non-critical activities off your plate.

    Want to be a Better Leader?

    Choose the Right Staffing Partner.

    The right staffing partner can improve your effectiveness, by rapidly delivering exceptional people to support your busy team. Take on pressing projects. Improve productivity. And flex your workforce in response to changing demands.

    With a national presence, and a full complement of staffing and placement services, Exact Staff can design the ideal solution for your business. Ready to get started? Contact your local Exact Staff office today.

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Are You Showing Your Employees Enough Loyalty?

05/17/16 10:00 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers, News | Leave a Comment
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Are you as committed to your employees as you want them to be to you?

Consider how your team members would answer the following questions (if their responses would be kept anonymous):

Does your boss care about your happiness?

Is your boss committed to helping you achieve your career goals?

Does your boss recognize and appreciate your hard work?

Does your boss support your professional growth and development?

If you’re not certain that your employees would answer a resounding “Yes!” to each of the above, you may not be showing your employees enough loyalty.

Loyalty is a two-way street. To get it, you have to show it! Today, Exact Staff shares four ways you can prove your commitment to your staff – and get greater commitment, effort and loyalty in return:

Create Clear Career Plans

Hold periodic one-on-one meetings to determine employees’ long-term career goals. Help each individual to develop a three-to-five year career development plan that provides the challenge and clear direction he needs. Another way to show that you’re committed to helping employees achieve career goals is by implementing a formal mentoring program. Pairing talented staff members with mentors clearly conveys your commitment to their growth and professional fulfillment.

Invest in Employees’ Professional Development

Conferences, seminars, webinars and e-learning opportunities are valuable tools to accelerate employees’ professional development and improve loyalty to your organization. If funds are tight, consider one of these lower-cost training options:

  • Cross training
  • Brown-bag lunch seminar (where key managers give a one-hour training presentation during lunch)
  • Bartering training services with other companies

Hold Teambuilding Events

Teambuilding is a great way to strengthen the interpersonal connections that build trust and loyalty. If you’d like to plan your own event, here are a few tips to ensure its success:

  • Hold it offsite. The change of scenery will energize your staff and minimize distractions.
  • Promote the benefits. Encourage buy-in by using internal communication to generate enthusiasm and explain what employees stand to gain.
  • Mix it up. Break up the program into several short sessions. Include time for work, play, eating and socializing – and balance intense activities with more relaxing ones.
  • Allow time to process and reflect. During and after the event, discuss takeaways and benefits. Your team will get more out of the process if they understand the purpose and meaning behind the teambuilding activities.

Express Your Gratitude

Thank employees formally and informally, for things big and small. Frequently showing your appreciation sends a clear message that you value their contributions – and value them as both humans and professionals. It’s free. It’s easy. And it has a huge impact on loyalty!

Another great way to express gratitude for employees’ hard work?

Provide the support they need. Whether it’s a single temporary for a day or an entire project team, Exact Staff provides a range of staffing and placement services to increase productivity and create a healthier bottom line.

Terrible Leaders Can Teach You This

05/10/16 10:00 AM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers, News | Leave a Comment
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Ever hear of the “CASE” method?

It’s an acronym for Copy And Steal Everything, something that great managers, executives and entrepreneurs do all the time. After all, why start from scratch when you can learn from another exceptional leader’s success?

Of course, you can learn from terrible leaders, too – what NOT to copy and steal, that is. Check out these three things bad execs do (so you don’t make the same mistakes):

Ignoring Engagement

Employee engagement is more than a feel-good tactic; it’s vital to keeping your team happy, productive, loyal and motivated. Bad managers are frequently guilty of missteps like these that alienate employees:

  • Needing to win at all costs. A terrible leader feels compelled to win every argument and exert his authority in every discussion.
  • Explaining why others’ ideas won’t work. Managers who use this maneuver may think they’re demonstrating superiority by shooting down an employee’s perceptions. Over time, however, they destroy motivation – leading to avoidance and disengagement.
  • Failing to express gratitude. Not expressing appreciation is obviously a big de-motivator; no employee wants to be taken for granted. If a leader conveys the attitude that he doesn’t really value employees’ hard work, he can’t expect his employees to care about building the company’s success.

What You Can Learn

Take a look at your own management behavior! Make sure you’re saying and doing things that foster an engaged work environment – and create dedicated employees:

  • Demonstrate integrity in your actions and beliefs.
  • Protect your employees, especially when they make mistakes. Find ways to remedy situations that helps employees learn and grow.
  • Show your appreciation. Leverage recognition, awards and verbal praise as ways to increase engagement.

Being Too Nice

Appeasing employees and colleagues in order to prevent conflict may seem like a smart idea at first glance, but leaders who are too accommodating in their behavior pay a high price:

  • Their own ideas may be overshadowed by more assertive leaders.
  • They may wind up doing others’ work to prevent conflicts and make complaints “go away.”
  • Over time, they ultimately lose the respect of their subordinates, peers and managers.

What You Can Learn

While being “tuned into” employees is certainly important, you can’t afford to be a pushover. Set clear performance expectations for employees and hold them accountable.

And instead of avoiding conflict, realize that a certain amount is actually healthy. Improve your leadership abilities by truly listening to what others say, evaluating whether or not their ideas and points of view are valid. And if they are, be willing to embrace those ideas. Being an exceptional leader is about producing great results, not just being right.

Another Thing Terrible Leaders Do?

They overlook the benefits a staffing partner like Exact Staff can provide. With a national presence, and a full complement of staffing and placement services, we can rapidly deliver exceptional people to build your core team. Improve productivity. And seamlessly flex your workforce to match changing demands.

What can we do for you? Contact a staffing expert at your local Exact Staff office today.

Your Company’s Org Chart Shouldn’t Be Set in Stone

05/3/16 1:26 PM | By :Exact Staff | Categories : Employers, News | Leave a Comment
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Looking for new ways to thrive in an increasingly competitive world?

Try ditching your org chart.

Think we’re kidding? Then it’s time you look at your organizational chart with a fresh set of eyes. Sure, it’s one of the most ubiquitous elements of the modern workplace. Yes, it’s comforting to have a visual hierarchy of who’s who in your business. But all that structure and rigidity might be holding your organization back.

A recent post by David Burkus recommends a newer, more fluid approach to organizing your company’s structure – using successful Broadway production teams as a model. Citing research by Brian Uzzi of Northwestern University and Jarrett Spiro of INSEAD, Burkus explains that the fluidity and project-based nature of Broadway production teams make them an ideal model for organizing your business.

Notably, the highest-performing Broadway production teams had a combination of closely connected colleagues (who had worked well together in the past), as well as new individuals who brought required expertise to the “project.” These teams were well equipped to tackle the challenges of producing a show, benefitting from the experiences of known colleagues and the fresh ideas of newcomers.

Bringing Broadway to Your Business

While we certainly don’t recommend ditching your organizational chart entirely, use these tips to keep your structure flexible enough to respond to changing business demands:

  • Think of the future. Be willing to let go of the way you’re structured today, in favor of a framework that will make you competitive over the next three to five years.
  • Identify the major functions of your business (e.g., sales and marketing, operations, finance, administration), and list the key responsibilities of each. Use these functions as the primary organizational elements for your business org chart. Then, be willing to “pencil in” everything below it – forming fluid teams around your problems, services and/or products.
  • Assign one person to each function, and then hold that individual accountable for leading and delivering results – by assembling teams and organizing work in the most practical ways possible for your current operating environment. As conditions and demands change, this person should have the authority and ability to make necessary changes to the roles and hierarchy within his function.

Your Organization is Changing.

Exact Staff’s Solutions Keep Pace.

The rapidly changing nature of work requires your organization to be able to turn on a dime. Exact Staff is here to help you stay flexible. Together, we can develop a staffing strategy to address your top priorities – and respond seamlessly to shifts in your business. Contact our national staffing services today.

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