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Doing the Right Things Right

How the Effective Executive Spends Time

By Laura Stack
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  • Contains 6 key ideas
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Doing the Right Things Right by Laura Stack

Doing the Right Things Right (2015) cuts to the core of successful leadership. It teaches you how to manage a team and how to work with others to achieve profitable and productive results. Get ready to feel confident and lead your team to success.

Key idea 1 of 6

Leaders must set the right kinds of goals and communicate them effectively to the team.

Being the leader of a company is like being the captain of a ship: It’s your job to get your company and its crew to the desired destination while steering clear of any iceberg-like disasters. And just as there are guidelines to help captains effectively navigate ships, there are simple practices that can help leaders stay on the path to success.

The first practice is to set clear goals for your team that align with the overall mission of the company.

With the right kinds of goals, you can do a number of important things. Goals give focus, and by focusing your team members you provide them with a sense of purpose. And purpose leads to productivity.

A tangible goal is the engine driving your team. It gives meaning to their work. It allows them to see the big picture, which will motivate them to continue working even if they’re stuck with a difficult or boring task. In short, meaning will imbue your team with determination.

But remember: make sure the goal is perfectly aligned with the company’s strategy. This alignment will prevent people from wasting time on projects that don’t advance the company in the right direction.

This brings us to the next practice: communication.

If you’re not clear and specific about what your team should be doing, there’s a good chance you’ll waste time and money on ineffective workers who are unsure about how they can be useful.

One company was handling a job for a client who needed a specific spelling for a certain word. But due to a communication breakdown, the team was never told how important this request was and hundreds of copies of material had to be revised and reprinted.

Obviously, you don’t want to end up in a situation like that. So, to practice good communication, remember these three things:

Remind your team of what’s expected in a simple and straightforward way.

Make sure everyone knows exactly how they’re contributing to the goal.

And provide both written and verbal instructions to ensure there’s no misunderstanding.

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