‘You have got to have a sense of humor!'

April 15, 2013

Last month I was in San Diego, Calif., for the QSC Power Meeting XXXVIII. While flying back to Chicago, I realized how much knowledge I gained by attending the meeting…  Of course my primary purpose for attending these industry conferences is to report back to you — Contractor magazine readers — all the beneficial information discussed during these events.

I left the meeting realizing, thanks to Bruce Wilkinson, president and Chief Leadership Officer of Workplace Consultants Inc., that everyone needs balance in their lives. I’m not referring to the physical equilibrium sort of balance, but the type of balance needed to live a fulfilling personal and professional life. If not, bad things can happen... Just remember, as Stephen King put it so eloquently, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” Now that sums it up in a nutshell, doesn’t it?

Wilkinson, the meeting’s closing speaker, discussed how to be a successful manager, how to deal with change, the importance of gratitude and how to treat others. And most importantly, that you’ve got to have a sense of humor!

Here’s a snapshot of the knowledge he imparted to attendees about business and life:  

  • It’s not time management; it’s choice management.
  • Change can be good or not so good; to understand balance you have to understand change. Change is inevitable, but adaptability is optional.
  • We are better off hiring people for their attitude and training them later.
  • Management and leadership are different. Managers are required to hold men and women by regulatory compliance. Leaders inspire people to cooperate.
  • There is a big difference between “can do” and “want to do.”
  • There are three reasons why respect is often lost: You didn’t do what you said you were going to do; there is no follow-up; and if the messenger is not accountable, respected, etc., the message is not remembered.
  • Little moments of gratitude make a difference in people’s attitudes.
  • We need to start thinking like coaches, and we need to motivate and inspire individuals differently.
  • You are going to work around different people your entire life, so you need a sense of humor.
  • You need to understand “value” if you are going to be a successful leader. Give people great value — it stands out to people.
  • Do not use the phrase “no problem.” Was there a problem to begin with?
  • Treat employees like they are No. 1; and they will treat customers like they are No. 1.
  • If your workers are not engaged, it’s your fault.

Wrapping up his presentation, Wilkinson said, “Lead like you want to be led; serve like you want to be served; and laugh like you see others laugh. There is humor everywhere.”

When someone states these commonsense ways to live life and run a business, it seems so simple and obvious. Why wouldn’t we all follow these guidelines to lead a fulfilling life? Maybe it’s just easier said than done. But I think knowing yourself plays a key in all this too. If you don’t know your strengths and weaknesses as an individual, then how hard will it be to have a successful career? Pretty hard, I think… Which is what attendees learned about in the workshop What’s Your Genius? How the Best Think About Success.

Before this workshop, attendees, including myself, took the ADVanced Insights Profile Survey by The Results Group LLC. Bryan Arzani, vice president and co-founder of Results Group LLC, and Jennifer Erickson, president and co-founder of Results Group LLC, reviewed the test results, what it all means, and how to utilize the results to be successful.

I have to admit, I think my Innermetrix ADVanced Insights Profile results are right on target. I also gave my results to a couple of friends to see what they thought of the results, and we agree that this is a pretty good assessment — all 71 pages — about me.

The assessment pretty much tells you about the different dimensions of your behavioral style, which are decisive, interactive, stabilizing and cautious. The report also includes a comparison of your natural and adaptive behavioral styles, a strengths-based description of your overall behavioral style; tips on how you like to communicate and be communicated with; your ideal work environment; ways to ensure your environment is motivational; areas where you can focus on improving; how you can be more effective by understanding your own behavior; and if that isn’t enough information, there is also a section on how to make all this information pertinent to you and how to connect your style to your own life.

When reviewing my results I had to laugh to myself about some of them (all being true of course). For example, I have a lower Interactive (I) score, which is about my approach to interacting with people and display of emotions. Thus, lower I score people are talkative with their friends and close associates and tend to be more reserved with people they’ve just recently met. So sometimes I am seen as withdrawn by those who don’t know me.

I have a high Systematic Score, which is about my approach to the pace of the work environment. Therefore, this means that I’m always willing to help out in a pressure situation, and even in the midst of chaos and high tensions, I am usually very calm, cool, and serene (even if I’m not this way on the inside, people perceive me to be that way). I also learned that I am a perfectionist and systematic, all these things I agree with. The results are very detailed, helping you understand your strengths, how you may be perceived by others, and most importantly showing you areas that you should tap into to be a success.   

So, if you are interested in learning more about Innermetrix ADVanced Insights Profile Survey and other services offered by The Results Group LLC, go to: http://www.resultsgroupllc.com/services.html. And in the meantime remember, as Wilkinson said, “Lead like you want to be led; serve like you want to be served; and laugh like you see others laugh. You have got to have a sense of humor!”

About the Author

Candace Roulo Blog | Senior Editor

Candace Roulo is a senior editor of Contractor magazine, based in Chicago.

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