In this episode, Jason Davis and Marcie Stern talk about the critical skills and resources that managers need to thrive when leading remote teams.
Insights from Korn Ferry CEO Gary Burnison
Franklin Covey book: Speed of Trust
DDI: Development Dimensions International
Zenger | Folkman Insights
Podcast: Get Better Results By Giving Better Feedback
Connect w/ Jason on LinkedIn: https://bit.ly/3wr61c6
Connect w/ Marcie on LinkedIn: https://bit.ly/2ZozuIS
Intro - 0:06
Welcome Marcie Stern - 0:52
3 Critical Skills Managers Need Today - 4:14
Marcie's Top Resources for Leadership Skill Building - 29:14
Top Challenges For Skill Building - 36:23
Episode Recap - 45:37
Outro - 49:23
Jason Davis 0:06
Welcome to Lead Smarter Not Harder, your stop for how to stand out as a leader. I'm your host, Jason Davis. And this week, I'm joined by Marcie Stern, Director of Learning and Organizational Development for Alzheimer's Association, as we talk about critical skills and resources that managers need to thrive in our evolving workplaces. As always, please remember to rate and review this episode wherever you're listening. I greatly appreciate the support. Let's go!
I wanted to spend some time today talking about leadership skill gaps. And the challenges that managers and organizations quite frankly are experiencing right now as they try to fill it.
It's no secret that our work environments have changed dramatically in the last 18 months. With that comes a change in the way that people need to lead others for their teams to continue to be successful or to get to that point where they call it successful. So while some leaders have been able to make that transition, others have struggled and their employees are feeling it too. And you're starting to see that show up in many different ways. A lot of that through just plain leaving that organization. We've set multiple records this year and the number of people that have quit their jobs. And you know, most recently in July, we had over 4 million people have voluntarily left their roles. So again, a lot of that disconnect and a little bit that frustration is being shown in various ways. But you know, one of them have a greater conversation about that today but also needed to bring in some expertise to get there so wanted to introduce Marcie Stern. Marcie is currently the Director of Learning and Development for the Alzheimer's Association. A little bit of background on Marcie. Marcie's professional journey began with degrees and Health Services Administration from the University of Arizona and Master's in the same subject as well from Arizona State University. Professionally, Marcie has been a part of some great organizations such as Allstate Aspen dental, and at one time had her professional practice, Marcie Stern and Associates, as an educator. Marcie is a faculty member with the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. And as an author, Marcie has a book titled so long inner critic. Hello, Inner Champion: 25 Tips to Master Your Mindset. Marcie, welcome to the show. Thank you so much for joining. What did I miss in your bio?
Marcie Stern 2:41
That was great. I appreciate it. And I'm really happy to be with you and your audience today. Thanks for having me.
Jason Davis 2:47
Absolutely. So what did I miss? Did I capture everything important?
Marcie Stern 2:51
I think so. Yes. And of course, you know, married with two boys and you know, all that personal stuff that is is part of your full life and, and what you bring to your work as well.
Jason Davis 3:03
Yeah. And I think I saw you recently an empty nester. Is that accurate?
Marcie Stern 3:09
Ah, yes. Yeah. It was a short-lived empty.
Jason Davis 3:15
Yeah, I get that.
Marcie Stern 3:17
You know, they are on their journeys, as well. So we're out there in support.
Jason Davis 3:23
Yeah, I understand that, especially with the pandemic and just so much and change and things going on. Definitely understand that. Alright, well, let's go ahead and jump into a few questions here. And again, just, you know, we're going to spend this time talking over some, you know, opportunities that we've seen a lot of us have seen in the leadership space, and really, what kind of things we're going through to fill those gaps that we're seeing. So, you know, as we said, so many organizations have moved to remote or hybrid roles. Most managers have never led in this type of environment, excuse me, especially if they are new to leadership. So what are the three most critical skills that managers need to have to effectively lead in the remote hybrid world?
3 Critical Skills Managers Need Today
Marcie Stern 4:14
Yeah, it's hard to narrow it down to three. And you know, when your listeners hear what I have to say, they'll be like, well, we've heard that before, or that's important, even when we were pre-pandemic. So, yes, and these are skills that I have seen and heard from other leaders are just exponentially more important as we've transitioned and continued to adjust to this remote and hybrid work. So I'm going to start with the most basic fundamental foundational leadership skill and it's around trust.
Very early in the pandemic, what I've heard from many leaders is, you know, this, this desire to trust their employees just around I think getting work done, what are they doing it, I can't see them. And I mean, that was kind of the first concern that I heard leaders share. And, you know, if you didn't trust your employees before the pandemic, it's more likely that you've either grown in that muscle that skill, or it continues to be a deficiency. And I think with any kind of relationship, personal professional, but especially, you know, with a, with a leader, you need to have that foundation of trust. It's something that Patrick Lencioni, you know, built into, it's been around for a while, but that Five Dysfunctions of a Team, and it's the pyramid, and in foundationally, trust needs to be there to have a highly functional team. And there are many ways to build that trust, and people can approach that differently. But I would start there.
Jason Davis 6:14
Yeah, I agree, that's a fantastic place to start. And, you know, I've done a couple of episodes where we specifically talked about trust and the manager's role in building that and how effective that can be to create, you know, just good employee engagement, good employee and manager engagement, I guess you could say, so.
Marcie Stern 6:31
Yeah, absolutely. And I think, you know, oh, gosh, depending on the type of leader people are, they've already established, you know, really good rapport with their team. But when you are leading remotely, and don't see your people day in and day out, or it's on camera every once in a while, you know, it's important, I think it takes even that much more effort to stay connected and to maintain the rapport that you have, and not to make assumptions that if you don't hear from a team member, they're doing fine. And I think when you sort of, you know, really focus some extra energy on not just building but maintaining that rapport and trust, it will continue to be strengthened. And, you know, I think part of that is just maintaining communication. And you'll probably hear me talk about communication and in all of the, you know, these top three skills, but, but maintaining open communication and asking open-ended questions, and, you know, just checking in and not with a simple, how are you doing? I'm fine, okay, let's talk about work. But really listening and, and having that empathetic ear for? How are they really doing? Or asking some questions around, you know, you know, what's your biggest challenge this week? If you're, you're just having a weekly check-in? Or what's an accomplishment that you're really proud of, over the last week or two? And just ask questions that help your employees know that you care about them. And, and, and, and that, you know, helps to engender more trust.
Jason Davis 8:22
That's great. I love that a lot. And I think, you know, in, in the ways that I've seen that user, I've used it in the past as well. And you know, just asking people things around, like, hey, what's the most challenging part of your job right now? You know, just giving them you know, one, like, hey, it catches them off guard a little bit, you know, as you said, it gets you out of that normal, hey, how you doing, you know, okay, now back into business stuff, catches you off guard, and they're in a little bit of raw space, but I think they also recognize that, okay, I might have five to 10 minutes here, where I can tell this person, what the most frustrating things about my job are, I should take that right, you know, I should really take advantage of that. And I like that, I think it just, again, it kind of gets to that whole psychological safety aspect of things as well of, hey, we're going to go much more beyond that, hey, how you doing today, you know, and just as a, you know, building relationships with people like that.
Marcie Stern 9:18
And I know that psychological safety or that emotional security, it's, you know, they seem to be buzzwords, but they are so important. It's it just, you know, it's gonna help people feel like they're not, you know, my leaders not asking just to ask and take up space or time but, you know, they can sense that you genuinely care and you've created that, that space where you're, you're really ready and able to you know, take whatever the response is and deal with it. You know, so I think there's been such a heightened focus on well-being, you know, physical, mental, emotional well being We're all working through this challenging time. And if you are a leader who can be comfortable with being uncomfortable and asking about and showing concern about yours, your team's well-being in helping them work through distractions or concerns, while they are working remotely, that too will help strengthen the trust.
Jason Davis 10:24
Excellent point. And, you know, I like that concept of, you know, when you ask questions like that, be ready for an open honest right answer, right. You know, don't expect that, oh, everything's fine. You know, I mean, be ready, and be able to react appropriately for something that may be far, far outside of what you expect it. Yeah, I like that thought a lot.
Marcie Stern 10:48
Yeah. And I will, I will happily share, I recently came across an empathy formula that I read about or saw somewhere from DDI Development Dimensions International. And it sounds simple. But for people who kind of like that formula, like, help me, how do I demo like I get empathy is important. But how do I demonstrate that? And so here's a formula that I've shared. It goes like this, it's it sounds like you're feeling fill in the blank state the feeling that you're observing, because, or about, and then you state the fact. So it sounds like you're feeling frustrated because there is so much more work to be done. And we're down to people on the team. And it just opens up the conversation. And as you said, be ready for you know, what, what may follow after that statement. So if some people like that formulaic, I offer that up into something to try on.
Jason Davis 11:57
That's great. We love formulas here. Thank you.
So I guess, did you do we feel like we've got a good piece of the trusted content, I'd be happy to share the next one that I have on my list. Yeah, I
I think we're good there. Go ahead.
Marcie Stern 12:18
And it's actually, oddly enough, I didn't even think about it. At first, it is part of that Patrick Lencioni. Pyramid, where if you have trust, one of the things that you can obtain moving up the pyramid is accountability. And, boy, it's a loaded word. And it means different things to different people. But when I speak about accountability, from a leadership perspective, it is it's a balance, it is first of all being really clear about what the goals are, what the expectations are, how you're going to measure performance. And I would say and this blends into that trust concept are it's focusing more on the outcomes, not the tasks. So I'll go with the example of unloading or loading a dishwasher. And guaranteed you share a residence with somebody or have shared a residence with somebody that does not approach loading or unloading a dishwasher in the manner in which you would like, but does the dishwasher get loaded? Did the dishes get put away when they're clean? So that's what I mean by focusing on the outcomes and not so much on the individual tasks or the process. And so I think holding somebody accountable when you're focused on the outcomes, it helps to establish trust, it shows that you trust them and how they're going to get the work done. So. So I see that as part of accountability, and in delegating with the purpose being really clear about what you're delegating, who you're delegating it to, for what reasons, is it because they're they have the capacity, is it because they have the skill? Is it because it's a development opportunity, being really clear about the who, what why of delegation, and then being clear about what the expectations are? So often, I think especially since we are not in person as much, you know, a lot of this gets communicated over an email or a chat or instant message. And some of it gets lost in translation, some of that clarity, and when there's ambiguity then there's obviously more room for error. So, so accountability covers quite a bit.
Jason Davis 15:06
I agree. And I've often talked about, you know, accountability being, you know, one of the building blocks for building trust, right. And having that as a component of it, I think they play and or play very well together, I guess is a good way to look at it. In the thought about delegating with purpose, you know, that's, that's a lot of the client work that I do individually, as well as helping them figure out, Hey, who are the best people? Or what may be a better way to phrase that is? What kind of work are people like to do? And who are they? And how do we identify that? And how do we maximize that and really think about it? It's no different than, you know, a sports team might look at, hey, what are the things that our players are best at doing? And how do we absolutely maximize that at any time? It's the same thing in the working environment, too. It's understanding what people may or may not be good at, and how to get them that right work. Maybe not so much of Well, hey, you're just you've got capacity. Right?
Marcie Stern 16:06
Exactly, exactly. And not to keep going back to the same person, like don't have your favorites be really strategic about your delegation. And that will create trust among the team when they see you being kind of equitable and fair and transparent about the what, why, and who? Around delegation in holding your team accountable as well. So yeah, they're all interconnected.
Jason Davis 16:36
Marcie Stern 16:39
I would say too that, again, it hits accountability and trust, but that and I said, I would repeat, you know, this word communication, just especially while remote, you know, being available. Because when you can't walk down the hall and, you know, pop your head in for a quick question, you don't you just you're under the assumption that people are busy, and they don't have time. So just checking in, and, you know, even if it's a quick pay, you know, I just sent you an email asking you to complete XYZ to, you know, let's just carve out 5 - 10 minutes and make sure that, you know, it's clear, do you have any questions? Do you have what you need? What can I do to support you? That really can't happen as effectively when you're communicating electronically. So just be available and be proactive. I don't think there are over-communication risks when we're working remotely. So I think it's, it's better to over-communicate than under-communicate?
Jason Davis 17:48
Yeah. Yeah. And I think, you know, even if, even if being available comes with, you know, some constraints to write like, Hey, don't text me after 8:30 at night or something, you know, like, let's all just kind of put things down. You know, like, I think some nice boundaries could be set there, too, when it comes to having availability, and just being able to support people also, I think that's great.
Marcie Stern 18:09
And I think that's part of, you know, the team norms that a leader can create, how do we want to communicate with each other? And what are the individual requests? And how can we support one another during this time? Yeah, that's a great point.
I guess the last point I wanted to make as we're talking about accountability is, everybody has a different skillset and experience in their work. I think leaders, especially new leaders, because this is what we're talking about, is, you know, especially if you've gotten into leadership because you were really good at doing the work and now you're leading your you know, people who are your peers, there is this tendency to tell and just give the answer as opposed to asking open-ended questions. I think part of that accountability is really knowing when to tell versus asking based on what the experience knowledge skill is, for your team member. So that's just something I would, I would caution and think about, am I telling too much or am I stepping back and helping them to think through the challenge of the situation and come up with their own answers?
Jason Davis 19:41
It's an excellent point. I don't know that enough people really think of that on their own right until somebody tells them like hey, you're, you know, you're giving too much information you're not you know, kind of challenging people to either find any answers or help you come up with an answer or work together to really figure something out. I think it's you know, as a Leaders tendency to want to support their team as much as possible, you know, and do a really good job when they're a new leader. It's like, oh, well, let me just give them the answer. And that's great. Then you find out later on, it's like, Well, I'm just doing that over and over and over again. And that's all I'm doing all day long.
Marcie Stern 20:14
So, exactly. And really, the other end of that continuum is, oh, I completely trust this person. They know what they're doing. And then you don't check-in at all. And you know, two weeks later, you find out they haven't moved the needle at all, because they still had some questions or didn't have the resources to get the work done. So there's a little bit too much of that hands-off. But yeah, I think, you know, when we were at Allstate, and we brought in, from Ken Blanchard Companies, the Situational Leadership, which is just a great training and tool to be thoughtful about how you need to adapt your leadership style, based on the development level of, of your staff, and development with a particular goal or task, not within their career, so that you're, you're giving them the right leadership based on where they're at and what they need. Not too much, not too little.
Jason Davis 21:16
Exactly. Yeah, I'm a big proponent of Situational Leadership. So thanks for adding that in there. That's awesome.
Marcie Stern 21:20
Yeah, yeah. Some of my favorites. I think a natural flow. Another skill is feedback. And this is something that I, in particular, think new managers, new leaders might have some difficulty, like, you know, I have to tell them, they're not doing something right. Or even I think some people actually find it more difficult to give positive feedback. I've had managers say, Well, why do I need to recognize somebody for doing something that's on their, you know, their job responsibilities, they're doing their job? Why do I need to acknowledge that? So I think both are, you know, both skills are important to be able to give that feedback. But, you know, again, you know, as I think about the remote work, and not being able to see and do a quick check-in, you know, giving that feedback and having that communication is so important. It needs to be purposeful, it needs to be timely, we all know, you know, kind of that SBI model, you know, situation behavior impact, and that it needs to be timely. And I would say, you know, I've heard people say that now all I need is some help with courageous conversations. And I'll ask them, Well, what type of feedback are you giving your staff, and it's almost like, they're not addressing the situation in a timely manner, such that it's snowballing. And it gets to the point where it becomes a courageous conversation, or it's a performance issue. And I know, you know, when we hear the word vaccination right now, or comfortable lately, thinking about COVID. But I'd say being effective at giving feedback is like a vaccination, preventing having courageous conversations. So I cannot emphasize enough how important that skill is, and to be able to do it correctly.
Jason Davis 23:23
Yeah, you're spot on there. And I love that you brought up kind of the positive reinforcement, you know, in conjunction with giving that that redirecting feedback as well. And it, I always felt like, the more you gave positive feedback, positive reinforcement, the less awkward the other stuff was, right? Because it's not, it wasn't like, oh, this person's always coming to me with bad news. You know, you're kind of mixing in a bit of the both. And like I said, I think they play very well together. And giving, you know, redirecting feedback is not easy for a lot of people either. And like I said, I think it takes some of the stink and some of the awkwardness away from that, during that process. So
Marcie Stern 24:07
Yeah, and there have been a number of different ratios that I've seen out there. And there was a somewhat highly contested research study that was reported in Harvard Business Review, but they, I think it was like a 5.6 positive to one negative feedback, statistically showed that there was a higher functioning team, when you were working with that kind of ratio. I've heard three to one, five to one, eight to one, I think the point is, make sure that you're giving positive reinforcing feedback, more than the redirected kind of feedback, and here's what you're doing wrong that needs to be fixed or addressed. Because it'll go back to trust. It's almost like making little mini you know, trust bank deposits, because when you are catching somebody doing something good, they realize that they don't really care they're noticing, and they're are nudging me for it such that when it comes time to receiving that redirected feedback, you've got that trusting relationship already built. And you believe that that redirect of feedback is, is being communicated in your best interest, not because they like to catch you doing something wrong. So it is important to seek out opportunities, I would say because I don't think we naturally do it. But to be proactive, and seek out opportunities to give reinforcing feedback. One of my colleagues at Allstate, I love this, I have tried to carry it forward, she would actually put it in her calendar, once a month, and this wasn't for her direct team, but it was really anybody could have been appeared. It could have been anyone in her work world, but she would create a calendar invite to recognize, you know, three people from the last month. And so it makes you, you know, a tune to those opportunities, like, Oh, who am I gonna acknowledge this month? And, and I really like that, because everybody likes to be recognized. And whether it's somebody who reports to you or works with you. I think it's just a great habit to get into.
Jason Davis 25:16
Yeah, that's really cool. I think you're exactly right. It makes you more aware of seeing when those good things are happening, or just wanting to see those good things happening. So you can capture it and make sure you're recognizing it.
Marcie Stern 26:44
And I'd say it's, you know, equally important to use that SBI framework, instead of just saying thank you and showing appreciation that way. It's, thank you for what, what was the impact of that action or that behavior. And when people can see you connecting the dots, it just, you know, it really will help reinforce that behavior. When I did a lot of public speaking, and people would come up afterward, oh, thank you. That was such a great presentation or, you know, great information. And then like, that's great. But to me as a professional speaker that was somewhat empty, because I thought, well, and I would follow up and I'd say, Well, what was your one biggest takeaway, or what? You know, what really struck you? Or what's one thing you're going to do as a result, like when I can see the impact of that? Whatever that experience had on them, it's going to make me feel better about you know, the delivery and the content and, and the learning?
Jason Davis 27:50
I'm gonna do a really quick show plug because you brought up SBI so much, I covered that in a deep dive in an episode called, Get Better Results By Giving Better Feedback. So go download that episode, if you're interested in hearing a little bit more about the model there. So thank you for bringing that up. I think it's a warm welcome. My pleasure. Yeah. And again, we love formulas, we love templates. I love very simple, easy, effective ways to accomplish things that you know, leaders get challenged with. So it's fantastic. Alright, so, yes, yes, practice, practice a lot. Alright, so the three most critical skills right now we're looking at developing trust, holding people accountable and being accountable as a leader as well, and then being able to give feedback. And that's both in a positive way, redirecting way when you need that and doing just, I think we kind of landed on just do it right. Don't worry about how much you're doing one or the other, just kind of do both. Make sure you're accompanying both together. And that's going to put a lot of people in a much better position than where they are today. There are a lot of people out there that are just not getting any kind of feedback, let alone meaningful feedback. So I think that's really important. Great segue into my next question. And then what kind of resources might you suggest for people to dive in here and why should they spend their time there?
Marcie's Top Resources for Leadership Skill Building
Marcie Stern 29:14
So, gosh, there are so many great leadership resources out there. And this is in no particular order. But I will say one of the resources, well, I'll say Korn Ferry broadly. They do a lot. I mean, I know a lot of people know them as an executive search company, but they also have a lot of leadership development expertise. And one thing I'd say probably soon after we all went remote I started to receive weekly on Sunday, it's like usually Sunday, late afternoon, an email from their CEO Gary Burnison and these emails are written so beautifully. And there's always a personal story. He shows vulnerability. There are like three tips. And again, it may not be anything that is rocket science, but they're really good reminders. And I love that they come on Sunday because it's just a really inspiring way to start your week. So even if you did nothing and you signed up for that Sunday, Korn Ferry, you know, CEO, email, you, you'll be ahead of the game. So we're just gonna lead off with that. I talked about Patrick Lencioni, his Five Dysfunctions of a Team. We talked about trust. So of course, I recommend Franklin Covey, Speed of Trust book, but also Franklin Covey from a leadership development perspective. I mentioned DDI Development Dimensions International for that empathy formula, they also do a lot of work around leadership development. And they also have a book for new managers, people who are new to the role. But Jason, you and I have a colleague that was working at the Center for Creative Leadership. So that's another one. And while I haven't done a lot of work with Zenger Folkman, it's just another good resource. We've done some good work there. And I believe I heard you ask that the why? Because that's not a long list of resources. But like, why should I sign up for that Korn Ferry? Email? Why should I be interested in these resources? And, and I'm going to do a little bit of a 180, and turn the question around to your audience. Like, I would love leaders to know what their Why is, why would they want to develop their leadership skills? To reflect on that question? And I'm really passionate about purpose and leadership purpose and, you know, what kind of leader do you want to be? What had you said yes to being a leader, or accepting the promotion? Was it just the money? So I'm just going to turn that question back around here, listeners.
Jason Davis 32:39
I absolutely love that. You know, that approach, and I don't have the stat in front of me, I've got it there. And I can maybe pull it back for the show notes, but DDI so I actually, that's a great resource for a lot of leadership development, learning resources, but they also do a lot of good analysis and research as well. So I like to download their content. And they did a frontline leader report last year, as well. And so they talk about, you know, why people take leadership positions, and I think, you know, what you're kind of really getting at here is, you know, are you really setting yourself up for this? Is this really what you want to do as a career? Or was this just kind of the next natural and I say, natural in quotations, you know, step in your in the, you know, progress of your career, you know, or somebody said, Well, hey, this is, you know, the next step, or the next thing you should do, and you just kind of did it, you know, like I said, money is great, you know, things like that. And, you know, I think people really need to think about those things, especially if they're, they're struggling, you know, especially if they're really struggling too, to grasp leadership to grasp, you know, being responsible for other people being responsible for communicating goals, and helping people through work problems, and helping people sometimes your personal problems and helping people through personal problems that happen at work. Right, you know, so I think there's a lot that, you know, leaders need to really kind of think about there. And I love that, that, you know, that little bit of soul searching there.
Marcie Stern 34:12
I know, when I, when I was pondering that question, I thought, wait a minute, I don't think I have the answer. And even you know, I have an answer for me. But that's just me. I think it's an opportunity, like you said, to just reflect and soul search. And I think companies, you know, there are some companies really value the responsibility of leaders developing others. And so, you know, I'm hoping that more companies do that and don't. But, you know, oftentimes it's all about the results, not about how we are developing others, and how are we incentivizing our leaders to develop or others it And, you know, retaining and engaging our talent. And sometimes that means letting somebody go find another role in the organization. It's, that's not a failure if people are developing their teams such that they have new opportunities to grow within the organization, much better that than having to leave and take their talents elsewhere. Right.
Jason Davis 35:30
Yeah. I mean, those were always my best days as a leader when one of my employees that we've been working on a development plan or career planning and stuff like that, got that role, right, got that job that they were, you know, had been working towards, or for, it's, it's just awesome to see them go through that. And to me, as I said, it's very rewarding, and to take a non-selfless approach of alright, you know, am I losing maybe my best person? So why, right, you know, the company is better for keeping them here in some respect, because they could very easily go and jump somewhere else. Right, especially right now. So I think that's, you know, even more, critical now is, you know, recognizing that internal talent and using, you know, your internal mobility in a way that, you know, puts that talent in a good, good position to stay with the company and be successful.
All right. So we'll move on a little bit here. So, from your point of view, then Marcie, what's been the biggest challenge to developing leadership skills, and especially specifically for new managers in the last year and a half?
Top Challenges to Skill Building
Marcie Stern 36:39
Well, I think just generally speaking with, you know, the one thing that's gotten in the way of leaders developing their skills is just this constant, you know, working and living in this place of ambiguity, and, oh, when are we going to go back to work? And what is work going to look like? And, and so I think just being in this place of uncertainty, has made it difficult. But I think what's also made it difficult for leaders is this. You know, I've actually had leaders say to me, how do I balance being both empathetic and driving results. And I don't think it's an either-or, and if leaders can start to think about it as an end, because when you show empathy, I mean, being empathetic, and being compassionate doesn't mean, oh, I understand you've got, you know, distractions at home. So it's okay, if you don't work for, you know, Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and you do double-time to sort of their, their, you know, or whatever. I mean, there's, there's empathy, but there's, and we still have a responsibility to do the work. So I don't think it's one or the other. But certainly, through empathy, you're going to get more productivity, you know, when you're very genuine about understanding and working through and some of the challenges so. So I know that being remote has created some of those challenges, have a need to pick one or the other. And then, you know, we were you were talking about the competitive marketplace for talent right now. You know, the use, you see it, you hear it everywhere, it's, you know, now called the Great resignation, time period. And I've heard statistics anywhere from 25, up to 50%, depending on the article, and it was cited 25 to 50% of people planning to leave their jobs in the next year. So I think one of the challenges for leaders is, you know, am I using trust and accountability and feedback to develop and retain my talent, because, you know, for churning through people that is going to be really challenging to being an effective leader and developing your skills, there is a tool. And, you know, I don't know if it's just an HR term, but it's called a stay interview. And there are different, you know, templates out there. Jason, I'm happy to share one with you, if that might be worthwhile, but if they are, it's a conversation you have with your current staff about essentially what motivates them to stay, and what might motivate them to leave if they got an offer elsewhere. Why would they take it and have those conversations every once in a while and check in with them? So? Yeah, this great resignation and retaining talent is a particularly challenging time for leaders.
Jason Davis 39:45
Yeah, I like the approach of you know, having that conversation and again, you're going back to be ready for what people tell you. If you're going to ask those questions. Be ready again. For what people tell you if they feel like there's some kind of dysfunction or something that's Not just you know, flowing with them or going with them the right way. But again, those stay interviews are great ways to show people that you care to show people that you're trying to make sure you're retaining your good talent and getting good first-hand information from people before they're, you know, putting in their two-week notice or not, you know, just kind of disappearing. So yeah, fantastic.
Marcie Stern 40:26
I would say another challenge for leaders right now is just the emphasis around DE&I or DEI, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, whatever it might be called in your organization's. But feeling, I think I mentioned this earlier in a different context, but have, you know, feeling confident in having conversations that may feel uncomfortable and, and require some vulnerability. That's been another, you know, a skill that's been challenging for leaders that they just don't know what to say how to say it, they're afraid they're gonna hurt somebody's feelings, or say the wrong thing, or offend somebody. And, you know, there's a lot of training and development going on in that space. But I think that in again, you know, being remote and not being able to be with people, and really seeing the full expression of their body language, you know, does make it more difficult, but I think that's going to continue to be a skill for leaders in, you know, being comfortable with being uncomfortable. And, and that's, again, part of building trust and rapport with your team.
Jason Davis 41:48
Yeah. And in that, you know, those are things that they take time but you know, are also things that, I don't know people would intently develop or think about unless somebody brings it up, right? Or unless, you know, we didn't have this conversation, or unless somebody told them, hey, maybe you need to focus on this a little bit. And that probably goes back to giving feedback to people, right? Like, you don't know you're good or bad at your job until somebody tells you that you're good or bad at your job. So I think it's just kind of important to bring those things up and to make sure that you're focusing and putting some attention towards
Marcie Stern 42:25
I think leaders are going to constantly be challenged by, you know, leading through ambiguity, not just adapting to change, but helping lead change. You know, yes, I'll throw out that overused word agility. But being agile, for sure is something we've probably built that muscle quite a bit over the last 18 months. And just something I think will continue to be important for leaders. And then, you know, I'm just going to add one other point that I would love your leaders, your listeners rather, to walk away with. And so far, we've talked a lot about what they're doing for their teams and their staff, but to also be mindful of self-care. And I mean, that both personally and professionally. And I'll circle back to trust when your team sees that you are valuing your own well-being, they will recognize that appreciate that, and know that you care about them as well. And from a professional perspective, when I think of self-care, it's you know, don't let your own development go by the wayside. This happens, you know, even pretty pandemic, but I think even more through the pandemic leaders are completely overwhelmed and exhausted, because, you know, they're just getting the pressure from all angles. And so to be thoughtful about your own career and development, and mentoring. Jason You and I have had a leader that would talk about how important it was to stay challenged, and uncomfortable and on a scale of 10 If you weren't in that six to seven range then or if you were lower than that six to seven range of discomfort and challenge, you know, and you might be getting a little too complacent and stable so be mindful of your own growth and invest in your own personal and professional development.
Jason Davis 44:41
Yeah, great points. And yeah, I really like the self-care that you brought up and I think you know, even kind of conceptually thinking back to like Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, you know, as a leader if I'm not taking care of myself if I'm not putting myself to put my to be able to put my best self forward how can I possibly be responsible for other people and helping them do that too? Right? I think that's very much a part of that, that people kind of forget as well as like, Oh, let me take care of all this other stuff and like you said, put themselves last. You know, instead of saying, hey, you know what, I need to get eight hours of sleep tonight, or you know what, I'm going to go out for a walk today, just to kind of separate myself a little bit from the work and everything that's going on. Just different stress relievers, you know, whatever, you know, ways that people want to do that. We often forget to do that for ourselves when we're responsible for other people.
Marcie Stern 45:31
So I thought that might be a good one to end on.
Jason Davis 45:37
It is! That's an awesome way to segue out here. So just a little bit of a recap, and we'll go back a little bit. So, you know, we talked about, you know, the three most critical skills that managers need to effectively lead remote and hybrid teams. We talked about trust, holding people accountable. You know, and I think that kind of goes both ways, from the leader's point of view as well as being accountable as a leader and making sure you're holding people accountable. And then giving feedback, giving feedback both in a positive and redirecting way that allows people to move forward but also understand that they are doing a good job when they are doing a good job. I think those are great things to consider. From a resources perspective, we got a ton of them. We talked about Korn Ferry, there's an email blast that you can sign up for on Sundays as well. And I'll try to include some links to these in the show notes so people can get to them fairly easily as well. Patrick Lencioni, Five Dysfunctions of a Team.
Stephen Covey books Speed of Trust. We talked about DDI Development Dimensions International, it's a great resource. I use it mainly for reporting and some of the analytics that they do. But they do have a lot of great leadership development content as well. And then Zenger Folkman. Right. So another great resource, to consider there. And then really, you know, we close it out with talking about some of the biggest challenges around leaders these days, and really what they've been experiencing in the past year and a half. And, you know, Marcie brought up some great points on working and living in ambiguity. You know, really thinking about what that's like, and especially in the very early stages of all this shift, right, you know, March 2020, probably summer 2020, there's a ton of ambiguity going on, from a leadership standpoint.
So a lot of great information, a lot of great points here. Any final thoughts or anything else that we might have left out here, Marcie?
Marcie Stern 48:26
Oh, I'm sure there's something we left out. But no, I think we covered a lot of ground. And I hope it's been helpful. Even if there's just one little nugget, just do something with it. You know, if your ears perked up, or the light bulb went on like that's the one thing. Encourage your listeners to do something with the information. They've invested the time to get to this part at the end of the podcast. So I always encourage people to, you know, take one action in the next 48 hours that will help to cement and integrate that learning.
Jason Davis 49:05
Okay, great. Any, any plugs you wanted to give? Or where can people find you if they have any questions?
Marcie Stern 49:12
Oh, well, I'm on LinkedIn. And yeah, that's probably the best place. Marcie Stern and happy to connect.
Jason Davis 49:23
All right, awesome. I'll put a link out there for you in the show notes as well to make it a little bit easy there. All right, well, that concludes our show for this week. Thanks again, for listening. Please subscribe to the show rate review the show as well. I greatly appreciate any feedback that I can get as a podcaster in this space. So thanks again for listening. Have a great week, everybody.
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"Iron Bacon" Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0. http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/