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I was speaking to a very engaged Grounds Manager recently about a situation he was privileged to be a part of. Each day at work, he purchases a cup of coffee for himself and for a young worker on his staff, who happens to have downs syndrome. He said the coffee is not that expensive and he really enjoys the daily ritual with his young worker. One day, however, he was surprised when the young worker...

1. Be honest  Zig Ziglar once said, “Honesty is not the best policy, it’s the only policy.” According to the book, The Leadership Challenge by James Kouzes and Barry Posner, honesty is the most admired trait in a leader. You don’t need a degree to model this.  2. Be inspiring  Most leaders don’t see themselves as inspiring, but what does it mean to inspire others? According to The Leadership Challenge, people expect leaders to be excited, energetic and positive about the future. As a leader, be excited to be...

“You may delay, but time will not.” ~ Benjamin Franklin.  Recently I was having a conversation with a young leader who told me he spent all day Saturday watching football and as a result, he didn’t get any work done. He felt bad because he had some projects planned, but he had wasted the entire day just watching football. This is a good guy; he takes care of his family, running a couple of successful “side hustles” to make...

Don't assume. One of the biggest mistakes I made was thinking our workforce thought of themselves as leaders. I assumed because I thought of everyone as leaders, so did they. When I ask our team to raise their hand if they felt like they were a leader, about half did and half did not. I needed to communicate more often and with greater clarity. Don’t blame your team. Once you blame others on your team, you lose...

How do you get more done with less? You develop people who lead well. How do you go home earlier, stop working late and have happier customers? You grow great leaders in your organization who can do more. Most of us are not able to attract experienced leaders with high salaries and fancy benefits, but all of us can grow those leaders that work with us.  Do you need people who “Lead by Example?” Do you need leaders who can adapt in the situation and...

You can’t do it all. Work toward delegating, mentoring and coaching your team leaders for success when taking the lead.  Finding the lost opportunities. Looking forward and thinking about what is next in your job…along with everything else. If you train others to take on parts of your job, new opportunities become available, and you will have time to pursue them.  Put a stop to the excuses. By empowering your team to recognize their personal potential to solve problems, you make them capable and you take away all the reasons and excuses they might give for not rising to...

How can you plant positive mindsets in your leaders? Just as with any landscaped environment, you begin by keeping the weeds out! Negativity and laziness are examples of two of the most nutrient-depleting weeds in any work environment. As the leader, you can plant and maintain a workplace that thrives on being positive and adaptable, or you can let the weeds deplete it. Many experts say you can keep the weeds out. In the book, Change...

Johnny was promoted to supervisor and within a few days, he noticed he was anxious and feeling sick. After a few days, he realized he had internalized the pressures from the deadlines, work demands and the new challenges of leadership.    The expectations that come with being a leader can be high, especially when it comes to creating high-end results. In the book Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win by Jocko Willink and Leif Babin, they share...

Recently, in Orlando, Florida, I spoke to a group of landscape business leaders about cultivating their crews’ leadership skills. In the talk, I spoke about “The Racehorse Theory.” If you invested $100,000 in a horse for racing because you knew this horse had the potential to earn you one million dollars in a year, how would you handle that horse?   Would you allow the racehorse to just graze in the pasture to eat briars, weeds or whatever...

In my mastermind group, Dan Miller, author and creator of the 48 Days to Work You Love, presented this question as a response to use when anyone runs into a problem we didn’t expect. He said, “What does this make possible?” Initially, I tend to think problems are bad when it comes to leadership scenarios, but have you ever considered that problems might actually be useful? Dan’s question, “What does this make possible?” helped me see problems...

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