Gary Winters

Coach  Workshop Facilitator Author

Spring cleaning for leaders?

With Spring comes the promise of renewal and revitalization. This is a great time of year for leaders to recharge their batteries as well. Here are five ways you can do a little “Spring cleaning” to take your leadership practice to the next level:

  1. Realign your behavior to your core values
  2. Recommit to developing your team
  3. Reinvest in your own development
  4. Review your initiatives and action plans
  5. Realize that it’s time to let some things go

1. Realign your behavior to your core values

Are you acting in a way that’s consistent with your values? For instance, if you proclaim an open door policy, are you making it easy for people to come see you – and okay for them to speak freely once they do?

If you value personal and professional balance, are you taking time for things other than your work?

If you value candor, have you been avoiding difficult conversations?

2. Recommit to developing your team

Is there someone who could benefit from being stretched with a challenging assignment?

Could you take on a mentee? Few things help us focus on what works, and what doesn’t, then teaching them to others.

Has it been a while since the team gathered to look at how it does what it does, and generate ideas to improve it’s process?

3. Reinvest in your own development

Have you attended a seminar lately? Bought a book on leadership? Took on a new project to broaden your experience base? What would you like to learn?

4. Review your initiatives and action plans

Someone once said, “You can have anything you want. You just can’t have everything you want.” With your focus on the rush of everyday activities, it might be a good time to step back and take a view from 30,000 feet. Are there some initiatives which are stalled? Can you make some adjustments?

5. Realize that it’s time to let some things go

Have you developed some habits that aren’t really serving you? Perhaps it’s time to change some patterns. Can a weekly staff meeting be changed to a bi-weekly meeting? Can a team member be given more accountability and responsibility, freeing you up for other things? Can a pet project that is on life-support can be dropped?

Sometimes you have to slow down to go fast.

The coming of Spring reminds us all that we live in a world of cycles. It reminds us to take a break, periodically, to clean up our act – to dust off good intentions and discard what no longer serves us. It’s a time to open the windows wide, and let fresh air sweeten our environment. In the midst of pressure to produce results and put out fires, it’s imperative that we take the time, from time to time, to pause, and see what we might do differently to achieve our goals.

“What ELSE Your Boss Never Told You” is the sequel to the very popular “What Your Boss Never Told You.” Packed inside are more tips, techniques, and insights about the challenging, but rewarding leadership position.

“What ELSE Your Boss Never Told You” is written in a conversational tone, as though you and the author were enjoying a cup of coffee and talking about the issues that emerge for new leaders. It stands alone, and/or could be read before or after the first volume, “What Your Boss Never Told You.” You can start with any chapter and read in any order you like.

if you search for a book on management, you’ll find a staggering 600,000+ books currently available. How can you narrow that down? “What Your Boss Never Told You” is the best place to start.

No textbook here – this book is short and sweet. It’s designed to help you “unpack” your new job and be effective from the first day with your new team. It contains twenty-one chapters filled with the wisdom Winters has gathered from real managers – effective, successful leaders in organizations much like yours.

Leaders make decisions every day – big and small. Most know that if they include others in the decision-making process, the quality of those decisions – and the commitment to them – will likely improve. That said, they also know it’s impractical, if not impossible, to include others in every decision they confront.

“To Do or Not To Do” tackles the question of when to make decisions on your own, and when to involve your team. It gives you a deceptively simple but proven method to determine, when you are facing a difficult decision, how to decide how to decide.

Far too many meetings are dreadful, mind-numbing, energy-draining, productivity-sapping, colossal wastes of time. As someone once said, “To kill time, a meeting is the perfect weapon.”

Here’s the deal: if you’re willing to learn and apply the techniques in “So, How Was Your Meeting?”, you’ll call fewer meetings, while vastly improving the ones you do lead. They’ll take less time, have more balanced participation, produce better decisions, and result in concrete action items for follow-up afterwards.

While there are thousands of books written for people about to retire, this may be the only book for people who manage soon-to-retire employees. Written in a casual, conversational style, “Managing the Soon To Retire Employee” will give you everything you need to know to move forward with confidence and grace.

You can be successful with Sooners. It won’t happen by chance, and it’s not a matter of pulling some management “trick” out of your hat. But you can learn how to do it, and you can apply what you’ve learned right away.

Managing friends or former peers can be awkward. When you become the boss, everything about these relationships can suddenly be uncomfortable. There’s a new set of ground rules to establish – as manager, you are going be accountable for the work performance of friends or former co-workers on the team, and they are going to have to adjust to the fact that they now report to you. Everyone involved can feel awkward and hesitant about the future. 

Have you been approached by management with an offer to promote you to supervision? Or, are you mulling over the possibility for the future? Find yourself not sure whether to accept the promotion?

If so, you’ve come to the right place. Help! They Want to Make ME a Supervisor will help you sort out a very big question: Should you accept the offer to become a supervisor? Once you’ve read this book, you’ll be confident that you’ve made the best decision for you and for your organization.