4 Intentional Behaviors for Difference Makers

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“Intentional living is the act of making our own choices before others’ choices make us.”

–     Richie Norton, author, blogger, speaker

Intentionality is a fantastic tool for cutting through the static.  It’s a clutter reducer.  Intentionality brings clarity and speed to the party.

Here are four behaviors that will expedite positive, meaningful change in any organization, if communicated well (intentionally) and executed on with the REELAX Leadership Model at the forefront:

1)  Change The Conversation

Ask different questions.  Seek different answers.  (Those are two different things, by the way!)  Invite different opinions.  Get beyond the data and leverage real insights.  Take the opposite perspective on something you believe deeply and build a case.  (It’ll give you a different view as to why you believe, not what you believe…)  Lead the team through an exercise titled, “What If We’re 100% Wrong, What Would We Do Then!?”

2)  Play Offense

My mom, an otherwise amazing lady, was a “disaster lurks around every corner” kind of mindset.  Granted, with that approach, we might limit our big losses, but we also might miss most of our best opportunities.  If our team is constantly focused on not losing, we owe it to them and to ourselves to play the game to win the game.  We can’t lose what we don’t have.  Therefore, we ought to try to win what we want!

3)  Honor Outcomes over Processes and Transactions

Outcomes.  That’s why we get out of bed every morning.  Difference makers understand that processes can become the problem, and that markets and businesses evolve over time.  If we’re just focused on the next transaction, we’ll likely miss the opportunity that comes from seeking bigger-picture outcomes.  Example?  Are we taking bad deals, “transactions,” at the expense of sustainable, life-giving growth?  That’s a transactions-over-outcomes trap worth avoiding.  And, if “we’ve always done it this way,” or “we don’t do it that way,” gets in the way of “hey, what if we tried __________” that’s honoring process over outcomes.  That’s icky!  Honor outcomes — and the quality and frequency of great outcomes ratchets up pretty quickly.

4)  Be A Learning Organization

Build networks.  Invite insight from unrelated sources.  Interview a wildly-successful-but-out-of-market competitor.  Take a class.  Teach a class.  On “Bring Your Children To Work Day,” ask the kids what they would do if they were faced with _______________.  Loan an executive to The United Way.  Hire interns and ask them to really engage, deeply.  Call the last three leaders who left your team, buy them lunch and ask them what you could have done differently to make it better for them.  Do the same with the last ten clients who’ve left.  Ask, record and share the two or three differentiators that made your three newest clients sign up with you.  Remember your favorite childhood story and review it with your business in mind.  You get the point, right?  Every single day — see how deeply we can drive the learning, on an individual and team basis.

Not the only four, but four behaviors that, intentionally and relentlessly executed upon, become cornerstones for winning companies.  When we intentionally approach our days with these behaviors as foundations, markets don’t shift without us being ready.  Clients / employees don’t surprise us by leaving.  When we intentionally change the conversation, play offense, honor outcomes and learn, learn, learn — we separate ourselves from the pack in a very meaningful manner!

 


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