Talent Development

Practicing Performance

In many cases the difference between success and failure is small. One action or one decision or one more attempt can be the difference in the outcome. Usually, we are in the way of our own performance and so it is critical to keep out of our own way.

Have you noticed some people find success easily but fail to keep the results up? Then have you seen that others have the talent but need guidance to get on the right track? There is really no such thing as an overnight success even though that is what we may think. When you get into the story of how the great performers in any field have done it there will always be highs and lows, leaps forward and set backs or challenges. The reality is whether or not you are a natural at something, sustainable performance does not just happen. It takes a desire to succeed and consistent practice of the right behaviors. So, listed below is a list of some performance practices which I hope will motivate and guide you to sustaining performance in your life and whatever endeavors you pursue.

1. Take responsibility for your performance.

2. Competence starts with being confident but realistic about your abilities.

3. Do not sacrifice your goals by being average or allowing others around you to be average.

4. Recognize different personalities are assets to your productivity.

5. Write down your plans and goals so that you keep the right direction.

6. Gaining experience will help you prepare.

7. Have the confidence to never give up negotiating what you are worth.

8. Build high self esteem starting with self respect.

9. Have unquestioned self belief to ride through events.

10. Learn from your losses and do not make the same mistake twice.

11. Regularly exercise and eat right.

12. Be clear about your role in the outcome so you know why the result happened.

13. Actively listen to what others have to say to learn.

14. Do not think negatively as you will attract what you are afraid of.

15. Act and think like who you ought to be.

16. You must find a way for your work and home lives to fit together.

17. Look for positives in set backs and do not respond in fear.

18. Set realistic but challenging goals and be prepared to re-evaluate them.

19. Limit making costly decisions by emotionally reacting to events.

20. A healthy family life is crucial to a productive business life.

21. Greater fulfillment and results will come from showing you care about others.

22. Maintain your persistence by knowing yourself and what you want can be done.

23. Make your team feel wanted so they want to work harder.

24. Use a decision-making matrix to see how a decision fits in with your overall life and values.

25. Create a living and working environment that keeps your confidence high.

26. Be prepared to embrace innovation to stay on top.

27. Recognize there may be more risk in doing nothing .

28. Do not be afraid to take conflicts head on so disagreements can be addressed.

29. If you get a gut feeling about something then follow it.

30. Seek out wise people to talk with about your ideas and plans.

The Shift from Practice Management to Improved Performance

Over the past twelve years we have been working with financial advisors focusing primarily on practice management. During this period, we have worked with some major influencers, through both formal and informal relationships.

One major influencer was Michael Gerber, author of The E-myth Revisited and CEO of E-Myth Worldwide.? As Certified E-Myth Consultants, we were taught:

  • Most people who start a business are not really entrepreneurs, but technicians suffering from an Entrepreneurial seizure
  • The importance of working on your business, not in your business,
  • The sole purpose of building a business must be to sell the business, otherwise you will never have a business to sell
  • Businesses that are built with a strong foundation of systems, like McDonalds, will produce exceptional results

When we look at most coaching practices, like E-Myth and those who focus on the financial advisor market, most are practice management focused.? This was a natural evolution and the path we chose in 1998.? Financial services and wealth management are relatively new industries and approaches and systems have been under development, especially over the past five years through recent technological developments, especially CRM providers.

Over the past ten years, technology has simplified practice management.? Ten years ago, segmentation involved producing paper reports of client assets, scanning them into a spreadsheet (which was pretty advanced) and sorting them into categories.? Today this information is much more available and segmentation is a simple process.

CRM is the logical home of business systems and processes.? Today, programs like Redtail, Junxure and eMoney can provide advisor access to critical information about their businesses and have created systems or automated processes that allow advisors to complete these and other tasks with the push of a button.? Firms, like McDonalds, have technological systems in place for making the perfect french fries and staff members are trained on using the technological solutions.? Systems and processes get amazing results when automated.? CRM is the best solution for automating business systems, especially in service firms.

Advisors should focus their attention on having their teams learn to use their new technology effectively.? Redtail recently introduced Redtail University, where advisors and their teams can attend full-day sessions to learn how to use the programs and run the systems effectively.? Genworth Financial Wealth Management has been running two and one-half day practice management boot camps since 2000.? We think these types of organizations are the natural new home for practice management.

Advisors should now turn their attention to the new key drivers of advisor success ? Personal Performance, Relationship Performance, Team Performance, Client Performance, Business Development Performance and Business Plan Performance.

Central to this new Performance approach is Understanding People Before Numbers.? We believe this is the missing link that has resulted in underperformance in each of the performance categories above.

Before you can build a high performance practice or business, you need to understand your natural talents, identify your core life motivations and establish goals and a vision that are connected to who you are.

Performance is about making committed decisions ? decisions about your life and your business that allow you to effectively deal with lifes interruptions.? It is about setting a path forward that you can set out on every single day with confidence and enthusiasm.? Before you can achieve this, you need to understand your natural talents, core life motivations, set your goals and have a clear vision of where you want to be in the future.

To have a happy and successful business, you need to interact with team members and clients who share your values and understand their natural talents and core life motivations so you can help them make more committed decisions and achieve their goals.

Cricket DNA – Transforming the Lives of Cricketers Worldwide

As many people know I have a very deep passion for cricket. My love of cricket even strongly rivals my passion for the DNA Behavior business. So, why not put the two together? That is what I have done this year by launching the Cricket DNA discovery program with the Cricket Academy of the USA. Last week we had the teams and coaches participating in the American College Cricket Championships complete their DNA personality profiles.

This is the manifestation of a life long dream for me – to be able to blend my passion for cricket with a life purpose of educating people worldwide to learn about who they are for improving the quality of their life. Being Australian I never expected to launch this program while living in the United States.

Raghu Misra, founder of the Cricket Academy is aiming to make cricket a game of choice for American students of all ages from the age of 7 to 21. Few know that cricket was one of America’s earliest sports being imported by the British. Even George Washington and John Adams played. A key focus of the Academy is the personal development of the players. We believe that the differentiators of sportsmen should be their talent and the ability to manage their emotions, and not simply having the best technology and facilities. Ultimately, this inside-out approach leads to greater sustainable sporting performance and development of life skills.

In building the Cricket DNA discovery process everything that has been learned from our broader DNA Behavior research has been drawn upon. The unique approach of DNA Behavior is to have all cricket players complete their Cricket DNA Personality Profile online to learn more about their talents and also struggles, which if unchecked could get in the way of success. Research and experience shows that when a person combines both their talents with passions they can achieve great results and also build great team relationships through better understanding others. Of course, this leads to greater enjoyment from the game and overall commitment to excel.

Further, the DNA Behavior methodology extends to the coaches. It is absolutely crucial the coaches complete their profiles and talk about them with the team. Team success really increases when there is a high degree of trust between the coach and players. If the player-coaching relationship is broken then failure and disruptive behaviors will not be far away.

These same principles apply in all walks of life whether it be business, personal relationships, sports, the arts and so on.

Visit Cricket DNA for more information: http://www.cricketdna.com

Dream Bigger Than You Can Think

In recent times I have done a lot of talking about your “success impediments”. What is getting in your way to success? A lot of the time it is our own mind. We allow negative thinking to get in the way. This will be true at any time particularly when times are tough and we are fearful. Or it will happen because we have limited experience or a lack of confidence. However, we should never let the big thoughts go away. These big ideas could be a genuine opportunity that is being thrown your way. To start growing you need to firstly not throw the idea away. At least write it down in a journal or talk to a friend or associate about it. You never know what they too have been thinking or how they will provide you with another thought or idea which will liberate your thinking.

To grow you must think big. In my own case, whenever I have taken a big step or pursued a big idea it is because I have taken that dream and not allowed myself to get in the way. I am doing something right now in our DNA business with an idea which I would never have thought possible. Interestingly, the idea came to me on how we could use technology differently and within weeks I have seen futurists talk about this as the future and industry specialists talk about these types of delivery concepts. While I have the vision, I can also see from those around me who have the talents to implement it. So, I will not be the barrier.

Sure, thinking big takes courage but we can all do it if we want to. What dreams or big ideas do you have that could change your life? Would you be a fool to let them go?

Identifying the Human Behavior Risks in Your Business

Back in March of this year, I wrote a blog about managing the human risks in your business. This issue has not gone off the radar screen. Identifying the human behavior risks in your business is critical to success. Every person has natural “blind-spots” which, if they go unchecked, can lead to individual performance failures, team failures, leadership failures and ultimately significant business problems. Regardless of the size of your business, the behavior of your people will influence the result. The influence will be higher the more senior the person is in the business. Look at why some major companies have failed in recent years – it is not the poor economy or financial markets, rather they have exposed the fundamental issues, particularly the behavior of leaders.

Some of the blind-spots may not seem that bad – e.g. uncomfortable to confront a problem, lack of patience, emotional decision-maker, poor planner, too driven and so on. However, these problems easily compound themselves at the individual level, then escalate when combined with others blind-spots.

Do you know where the blind-spots in your business are?

We have recently launched the Business Risk Management Report from our Business DNA profile which specifically identifies these risks. Please click here for an example.

Redeploying Your Talents

The current financial crisis is bringing to light a huge workplace shift. For many baby boomers, they only had one career or expected to have one career. The thinking of this generation was that upon getting your qualifications you had one career – working up the ranks often in the same company. Today, it is expected that the Gen Y’s will have 10 or more careers. They will job hop. Although, this may be more difficult to do in the current circumstances.

With the financial crisis many people of every generation are having to re-evaluate their career to survive. Some career paths will simply go. What happens to the talent? How do people change careers? For many the big issues will be financial by being locked into the “debt trap” and being faced with relocation.

The first step for re-evaluation is going to be mindset. People will have to look inwards to themselves and see how their talents can be redeployed. Coaching or mentoring may help because we all have blind-spots and will need a confidence boost from another person’s wisdom. The point is that many of us are capable of changing careers and still getting paid a reasonable income. The truly wealthy person is one who can confidently see that they have the potential for 2 or more careers. Of course, when there is financial pressure it is harder to see this because of the emotions that get triggered from panic. So, the key is to get people to take a step back and look at their talents which are the greatest source of their wealth.

As an example, I was talking with a friend of mine not long ago who is a leader in a bank. After some thought and discussions he has come to see that with his business knowledge and leadership experience he could successfully work in other companies. These other companies may not be in banking, but he can nevertheless redeploy his talents and make a great contribution. Even this week I have talked to 2 different groups of entrepreneurs about how they can re-examine their roles in their own businesses taking a similar approach. For some of them, it could positively change their business as they will get back in touch with their talents which are the real source of their productivity.

So, I really encourage you to look at your talents and see how by redeploying them you may find new opportunities. Be prepared to think creatively and beyond where you are now. A key part of this is not to let money be an immediate barrier. Look at the potential redeployment opportunities first. Then when you have your list, the economic denominator can be brought in as part of the decision-making process. The experience of doing this will be nothing short of liberating and powerful. You may even work in a job you are truly passionate about for the first time!!