It’s been an amazing year of growth here at Fired-Up! Culture, filled with meaningful conversations, rewarding work, and inspiring partners. Our team has especially enjoyed the opportunity to share their reflections on leadership with you via our blog.
Below I’ve included some of the top Fired-Up! Culture posts from 2022.
1. Why You Should Strive to Become a Culture Champion
In this post, Tim and I shared our belief that one of the highest purposes of leadership is to create a strong and lasting internal culture. We describe such a culture as “a collective set of values that are so accepted and embraced that they become part of the fabric of an organization.”
It’s easy for leaders to get swept up in day-to-day tasks and immediate concerns. But, a true Fired-Up! Leader is someone who understands and respects the impact of culture. In a quick-moving world, culture is what lasts.
2. The Simple Steps That Allow You to Lead by Example
It’s not enough to simply tell people what to do — as a leader, your actions will always speak louder than your words. Your behavior sends a strong message, and your team members will pay attention to the things you do, using them as a model for their own actions. This post helps you ensure the example you’re setting is one that creates a meaningful expectation for your team.
3. Building Your Circle: Why Leaders Must Have Trusted Advisors
One of the most self-sabotaging actions a leader can take is to always make decisions on their own, without the benefit of mentors, advisors, or trusted peers. For this post, Tim wrote about a conversation with an old friend. The friend, who was doing very well in his career, attributed much of his success to the support, advice, and direction of his inner circle.
As Tim writes in the post, “The business and leadership landscapes are competitive and ever changing. Your investment into a circle of advisors provides a well of knowledge and perspective you can return to again and again.”
4. The 6 Surefire Steps to Leadership Success
What leader doesn’t want to experience tremendous success and see all their dreams come to fruition? In this post, Tim outlines the foundational steps required to not only achieve sustained success but also enjoy loyalty and commitment from your team. He admits that “Gaining competency in these skills can be a challenging process for every new leader.” Fortunately, taking a moment to read this post is an excellent place to start.
5. A Leader’s Journey: Learning to Respond Better
Paul wrote some great posts for us this year with powerful examples drawn from his own experience. In this one, he explains why it’s not enough for a leader to be a good listener — they also need to be an excellent responder.
Paul points out, “Our responses define who we are, not only to those we directly respond to but also to those witnessing our conversations.” He also explains how the principle of self-regulation can help leaders become more intentional and less instinctual in the way they craft those all-important responses.
6. Want to Be a Leader? Here’s the Real Cost
It’s not a fun topic, but leaders need to be aware of the price that comes with holding a leadership position. In this two-part series, I elaborated on some of these difficult dynamics.
For example, people tend to listen for what they want to hear when the words are coming from a leader. This can lead to frequent misunderstandings. As a leader, you can’t speak off-the-cuff anymore, much as you might prefer that mode of communication. Instead, it’s far wiser to think strategically about how the people you’re speaking to are likely to receive your message, and then, tailor that message to them.
7. How Norms and Systems Become Culture
In this post, Tim explains how operating norms, otherwise known as protocols, around communication and behavior, provides the cornerstones for teams to begin to experience sustained success. But putting norms and systems into place, and getting a team to accept systemic change isn’t simple. Those comfort zones can be incredibly cozy at times. Here’s how to move your team into a phase of acceptance, then onward into stages of adoption and enculturation.
8. The Cornerstone of Leadership Must Be Relationships
At Fired-Up! Culture, we believe that relationships exist at the heart of leadership. To become the best leader you can possibly be, you must put time and energy into building genuine connections with your team members. You must care about their experiences, listen to their feedback, and encourage their growth.
An organization that puts people first will flourish. As we wrote in the post, “The more you look after your team, the more engaged that team will be and the more excited your customers will be to support your organization.”
9. Behaviors That Help You Become a Complete Leader
Are you ready to commit to growth and to travel forward through your leadership journey? This two-part series offers an entry-level list of behaviors that will allow you to progress with intention rather than react to events as they happen. 2023 is an excellent opportunity to take control of your own professional development!
In the End, It’s All About the Journey
Many of the blog posts we published this year were inspired by ideas shared in our book, Would You Work for You?: — The Quest: Discovering the Leader Within. In the book, we frequently discuss the fact that leadership doesn’t happen automatically. The process of becoming a leader is not unlike the process of developing a technical skill. It requires study, support, practice, commitment, and time. You have to be willing to grow your capacity and embrace challenges as they arise.
Investing in your leadership skills can make a huge impact on your life, team, and organization. At Fired-Up! Culture, we’re honored to be a part of helping leaders grow into the best versions of themselves. Thanks so much for reading, and we look forward to sharing more posts with you in the new year.
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Author, Speaker, and Change Agent.
Chris leads a dynamic team of passionate change agents who are dedicated to partnering with organizational executives to create cultures that inspire, engage and ignite the best in people. Our work is dedicated to harnessing the power of culture to equip leaders, build amazing teams and align operation practices to delighting the customer and drive breakthrough results.