TONIKA BRUCE

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Essential Tips For Selecting The Best Business Consultants

Essential Tips For Selecting The Best Business Consultants

Sometimes consultancy appears to be an ambiguous/vague profession that implies jack of all trades. For many, that’s enough to put them off the idea of getting one for their business. Entrepreneurs by nature are solo risk-takers who hold their businesses close to heart. They are not comfortable with outside influence on the baby they found and know how to raise their way. But, when it comes to business, no one knows everything. You have to be willing to seek counsel if you are to create a formidable brand. Having said that, how do you know the right fit for your needs? There is no absolute way to be sure but having a screening checklist is the starting point to clear doubts. You can use these smart tips the next time you want to hire the services of tips for selecting the best business consultants.

Specialization

To hire or not to hire a specialized consultant. On this matter, conflicting views are out there. Our take is specialist professional services and diversity in the industry sector. Consider the market they serve, are their professional services for B2B or B2C? That is vital because these two are very different. However, the industry focus should be wide, such as law, healthcare, marketing, etc.

The approach is better for these reasons:

  • When a consultancy micro-targets an industry, there’s a risk of staying comfortable with the usual standards and trends. You won’t get value.
  • Industry-specific consultants can easily fall into the temptation to use the same ‘template’ for every business.
  • There is a limited influx of ideas and insights with a single sector consultant.

Tangible Experience

A suitable consultant for your business should have experience in the challenges and opportunities you face. The best pick is an entrepreneur Since what he brings is his experience dealing with similar issues.

Past Client Relationships

Another great way to determine if a consultant is right for your business is to look at its clients’ history. It’s an indication of companies that fit its profile. Professional ones will list on their websites this information such as clients, case studies, and testimonials. Some can even include a CEO interview to demonstrate the value they bring from a client’s perspective.

Content Depth And Delivery Method

It’s not enough to look up a business consultant online. Go a step further skim through their plan, and ask questions on how they execute.

Consultants are knowledge workers, and that is what you should be getting. It means a comprehensive list of available resources on their site like white papers, e-books, videos, and guides that CEOs can use to make decisions.

The consultant you settle for must have depth. Other than the industry experience, can he write? Does he have fresh ideas? How does he communicate these ideas? What consulting approaches does he utilize?

Ask these questions before signing a contract. Why is this important? It shows a consultancy that is actively engaged and not just selling services based on their resume.

The Bottom Line

Finding and selecting the best consultants for your business is a daunting this tips task. It doesn’t matter if it is in the start-up, growth, or mid-market stage. Use this list to narrow down your search and identify the correct partner.

Have you worked with a consultant before? What other selection criteria did you use? Use the comment section to share your experiences.

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business ideas leadership women leadership skills

Special Programs For High-Performance Leadership Development

Special Programs For High-Performance Leadership Development

There is an increasing demand for leadership development programs. Leadership development is very vital in an organization. In response to the changing world of management, special programs for leadership are increasingly becoming popular. Leaders are finding innovative solutions to implement methods that will enable them to improve performance and remain effective in an organization. Due to limitations in administration, there is an emerging trend toward leadership development programs aimed at collective and power-sharing. Why are high-performance leadership development programs important? These are the reasons why this program is crucial in an organization.

  • Improves communication
  • More employee engagement
  • More innovation
  • More productivity
  • Customer retention
  • Proper leadership

Leadership development programs are one of the success strategies for businesses. That is why most organizations are investing in leadership development. So, here are the top 5 special programs for high-performance leadership.

Coaching Program

Through coaching programs, leaders can influence the release of the full abilities of their direct reports. We should do coaching programs daily. A leader with excellent coaching skills can turn these learning moments into valuable skills. This program will motivate employees and positively influence their engagement and efficiency. Leaders must provide guidance, motivation, and feedback to their employees in real time. This will be possible through coaching programs.

Interactive E-Learning

Due to the geographical diversity between the leaders and their team members, interactive e-learning is becoming popular. Interactive e-learning leadership training will enhance leadership effectiveness and cohesiveness. This leadership development program can be accessed via video conferencing, downloadable materials, and collaborative tests. It will help leaders gain soft skills that will enable them to empower, support, encourage, and inspire teams.

Communication

How effective is your communication? Communication is important in leadership. It’s achieved via messages, videoconferencing, phone calls, texts, emails, and one-on-one conversations. Since it connects leaders and team members, it should be optimized to be applicable and up to date. This can be achieved through special programs for leadership.

Accountability

Leadership success depends more on the talents around them. Leaders are accountable for their outcomes and that of their teams. So, leadership development programs will enable them to understand their responsibilities and those of their teams and come up with the desired results.

Power Of Influence

Great high-performance leadership development should inspire, encourage, and influence others to understand their concepts. Leaders need to learn to be effective influencers and good representatives. It is not a matter of who is more powerful but, it’s about who is more influential to the team to realize better outcomes. To be more effective, effective leaders don’t command; instead, they inspire and encourage others to achieve better results. All this will be possible through special programs for leadership.

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leadership women leadership skills

Five Common Challenges Leaders Face Today And How To Overcome Them

Five Common Challenges Leaders Face Today and How to Overcome Them

One of the main reasons people shy away from leadership is the difficulty of being in charge of others. You have to motivate a diverse group of people, improve their efficiency, and get results. Such is the life of the modern-day leader. Although leaders appear in all sorts of contexts and industries, they consistently face the same types of common challenges leaders faceAny individual or organization that desires to be successful must focus on these common challenges that affect leadership.

Why Is This So Crucial?

Leaders, especially new leaders, face various challenges including dealing with imposter syndrome. These challenges make new leaders lose confidence and feel like they do not deserve to be in that position. According to Better Up, young leaders suffering from imposter syndrome may question their skills or ability resulting in indecisiveness. Some leaders do get burnout because they feel that they have to handle everything without asking for the necessary help. Additionally, some of these challenges prevent many individuals from taking up leadership positions.

That is why today’s post addresses some of the leadership challenges and how to deal with them.

1. Developing The Team

Leadership is fascinating. Unlike managers, leaders achieve goals by showing not commanding. They have a unique role in growing the skills and talents of the team members. There should be an increasing value of the team output. A good team consists of individuals with diverse skill sets, opinions, and backgrounds. However, diversity can be a weakness when teammates cannot agree on a specific objective. Therefore, the biggest challenge that leaders face when building a team, is the struggle to align individuals with completely different paradigms to work jointly towards a common goal.

There Are Two Ways To Handle The Challenge Of Developing A United Team

  1. Leading by example: Unbelievably, the team learns a lot from the person in charge. The members will follow their leader’s guide in time management, presentation, and energy. Additionally, leading by example is proof that the rules and regulations are practical, as the members will witness their leaders implement them.
  2. Mentoring and coaching: Be intentional about developing the team’s talents. By providing opportunities to push and guide them, you can help grow their strengths. Wise leaders utilize mentoring and coaching to build successful teams. According to Bright HR, attaching a group junior employee to a senior mentor is the easiest way for junior staff to acquire new skills. Furthermore, the coach will be available to monitor the progress of the mentees and to ask their questions.

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2. Guiding Change

Change is inevitable. In professional settings, leaders often find that they have to drive such changes. That can be an uphill task in the face of resistance. Typically, change evokes unhealthy emotions such as fear, uncertainty, and frustrations that can easily result in conflict. Consequently, conflict can disrupt the operating schedule leading to losses or time wastage. Therefore, leaders need to learn how to overcome the resistance and handle reactions from team members.

The solution to guiding change is first, expect some form of resistance and think through what to do about it. Implementing change can cause setbacks; hence, a good leader can minimize their effect by identifying them before they happen. Secondly, involve the team in the process. You may not implement all ideas, but the team will appreciate asking their opinion.

Lastly, a study by Change-Walk-Me, proves that change cannot be implemented without proper planning. Correct planning involves delegation and appropriate transfer of vital information during the transition. Successful planning helps maximize the team’s potential and consequently increase efficiency.

3. Managing The Team And Resources

Micromanaging is a major challenge that leaders face in managing people and resources. The complex balance between giving members the freedom to work and overseeing the projects is not easy. Not to mention handling the team’s dynamics and making decisions that influence the organization.

One of the ways to handle this pressure is to empower others to take on some assistant roles. As a leader, you should assess the strengths of your team members and delegate tasks that suit each member. ZenBusiness observed that leaders using task management tools could evenly delegate tasks to all members without overburdening anyone. The management tool also helped leaders to match skilled individuals with suitable job tasks, leading to high efficiency and success.

4. Conflict Resolution

Human relationships will always attract disagreement. The problem occurs when hidden agendas and opinion differences become personal. Workplace conflict can lead to a standstill and eventually loss of time and resources. When an organization lacks amicable means to resolve conflict quickly, a simple conflict can drag on for a lengthy time, leading to more conflict and misunderstanding.

When the team engages in conflict, the leader remains the one to step in and bring a resolution. The ideal method to deal with conflict is to face it squarely. Community Tool Box suggests that good leaders listen to issues presented by the conflicting parties and strive to resolve the problem without favoring any party. They remain objective and engage in difficult conversations until they find the cause and solution to the conflict. Additionally, successful leaders set the ground rules for solving future conflicts.

5. Criticism

Leadership means stepping from the shadows of crowds into the public domain or spotlight. That means exposure to uninformed criticism. As a leader, everyone is watching every move you make. Many leaders face judgment for their decisions and missions. Criticism always comes with accountability and therefore good leaders face it head-on.

A seasoned leader understands that adversity reveals a person. The key is not taking it personally. Leaders must train themselves not to be overly attached to their job. They must understand that the critics are criticizing their performance, not the leader as an individual. Moreover, Forbes reported that good leaders do not play the victim and do not react impulsively to criticism. Finally, brilliant leaders turn criticism into growth opportunities.

Conclusion

The best way to deal with common challenges leaders face is to address them early on. The first step is being aware, and then facing them. Take action by implementing these strategies on the rocky climb to effective leadership. Furthermore, modern leaders must accept that they are the agents of change, and they ought to be ready to handle the accompanying challenges, as people always resist change.

Get access to leadership resources: Leadership Resources

Tonika Bruce offers one-on-one business and leadership coaching for entrepreneurs and professional leaders. For in-depth training, schedule a consultation call: Book a Call.

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business ideas women leadership skills

8 Best Tips For Entrepreneurs To Achieve Their Goals

8 Best Tips For Entrepreneurs To Achieve Their Goals

Every entrepreneur has a goal. So, to achieve the set goals, entrepreneurs need to come up with a plan to accomplish their goals. Goal setting is an important part of any business. You should learn the best tips for entrepreneurs to achieve their goals. You can also learn from those who already achieved their goals or get a business coach who will help you achieve them. However, if you cannot find a mentor due to monetary hurdles, it’s not too late to learn the best ways to achieve your goals. 

Here Are The Best Tips For Entrepreneurs To Achieve Their Goals

  • Learn every day: As an entrepreneur, try to learn new things every day. This will enable you to garner more business experience.
  • Take the risk: Entrepreneurs are risk-takers. So, when opportunities arise, don’t let fear hold you from taking action. You need to overcome the fear and take the risk of trying diverse business strategies and plans.
  • Have confidence: Lack of confidence often prevents us from finding a way to succeed. Therefore, every entrepreneur should be confident in what they do.
  • Have a clear vision: As an entrepreneur, defining your business vision will help you stay focused.
  • Set goals: This is essential for success in any field. Entrepreneurs should be able to come up with their business goals and ways to achieve those goals.
  • Associate with successful people: The people you hang around determine your success. Therefore, associate with the people who are already successful. You will be able to learn one or two things you need to succeed from them.
  • Take action: When you plan without taking action, that is a wasted opportunity. Just talk about it and act on it. Entrepreneurship is all about walking the talk.
  • Be focused: Sticking to set goals is sometimes very difficult. The majority of people lose their way while trying to achieve their goals. It’s advisable to hire a coach or who did it before you to hold your hand. That person will help you to stay focused on your goals.

Finally

Remember that an entrepreneur is a risk-taker. These tips are common among the best and most successful people.

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business ideas women leadership skills

Which Leadership Skills Women Can Acquire Easily

Which Leadership Skills Women Can Acquire Easily

Leadership Skills: Despite this being the 21st century, the world is still a patriarchal society. That means women have to work twice as much in the professional arena, let alone in leadership. But time and current trends show that women indeed have the potential to do more than follow. They have natural abilities and qualities that can apply in leadership roles. These are some of the women’s leadership skills they can use to move up their professional ladder for women. Although leadership is not gender-specific, men and women often display different styles. The distinct difference between their core traits makes some skills easier for a specific gender to adopt.

Empathy

The main reason many women are not in leadership positions skills is that they are too kind. Yet, to lead in the modern-day demands connecting with the employees and not just being an authority figure. Women have the empathy to appreciate and validate co-workers which helps to boost productivity and confidence.

Communication

In workplaces, open communication channels allow for clarity and smooth execution of tasks. Ranking high on the list of women’s leadership skills is communication. It is easy for them to excel as communicators because they do it regularly, clearly, and more openly than men. Women leaders provide adequate guidance and seek feedback from the members. The scope here is not speaking only but reading and writing, body language, and active listening. A leader who knows how to communicate will have success in directing the team and achieving goals.

Emotional Intelligence

Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand emotions- an individual’s and others’. In recent years EQ has become one of the top leadership skills because it is not about commanding people to take action but inspiring them. Recognizing people’s emotions enables a leader to identify the best ways to connect with the team. The skill comes more easily to women than men since they are in tune with their emotions.

Collaboration

Women are more predisposed to work in teams. They promote cooperation and collaboration among the members. Being believers in team building, they will work towards ensuring everyone is part of the mission. Their high capacity to serve and let others means they can make important decisions while relying on the team effort to make it work.

Motivation

Another leadership skill is the ability to help others tap into their potential. Women are nurturers. The natural tendency to care for and help grow can translate seamlessly to helping team members to succeed. Women seek to change their beliefs and attitudes rather than behavior through winning their hearts.

The list of women’s leadership skills above is not conclusive. However, it sheds light on the capacity of women to make exceptional leaders contrary to popular belief, it reveals that women have a higher success rate in acquiring these vital skills for leading.