Posted tagged ‘Tom Peters’

What Do You Think?

March 28, 2010

Dan McCarthy has a great blog devoted to leadership that I have recently started following. Dan has a great post about how using four words (“What do you think”?) can make you a better leader. Trust is a critical component of any successful organization. If employees do not believe that they can trust each other or management then many issues are going to get in the way of everything an organization is trying to achieve.

As Dan McCarthy points out in his post“Showing trust is the best way to receive trust in return. Leaders who don’t try to solve all the problems themselves but instead involve the employee or team show trust. Involvement builds commitment.”

Tom Peters one of my favorite business writers in his new book also focuses on the words “What do you think”  According to Peters’ “The four most important words in any organization are “What Do You Think?” Why are these words so important? What you are really saying is “you are a person of value that has an opinion that I want to hear.” Remember (and use) these four words and you will benefit enormously”.

How many of us have experienced meeting with a management level employee who goes on and on about their thoughts as to what needs to be done and not once are the opinions of others requested. McCarthy has this gem in his post “I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had meetings with senior leaders and at the end of the hour, not once did they ask me for my opinion. I once even timed a new VP. It took 57 minutes (in a one hour meeting) until he finally said “So what do you think?”, as he glanced at his watch. At least he remembered to ask.”

Do you agree that the four most important words in any organization are “What do you think”?

Permission To Try

February 28, 2010

Tom Peters is one of my favorite business writers, check him out at Peters’ is very passionate about leaders bringing the best out of their employees and the importance of creating an organizational culture that encourages people to try new ideas.

We have all sat through boring PowerPoint presentations, but Peters’ creates slides that are creative and unique, which he freely shares on his website. Check out three of my favorite slides below, which I displayed for the employees that I led when I served as Chief of Staff to the Buffalo Common Council. My goal was in every way possible to encourage people to raise new ideas and to try new ways of conducting business. New ideas often fail and that is ok as long as we are trying to improve the status quo through change.

As elected officials and government leaders we need to create a culture that encourage new ideas. The first step is giving  employees permission to try new ideas.

What do you think of the slides below? My favorite of the three is the one with a tombstone.

Tom Peters Slides