Over the next few months I will be transitioning my life and my business from Hood River, Oregon to Austin, Texas. There I will nurse my wounds from a divorce amidst old friends and my loving family.
I am reflecting on my last big transition. Before coming to rural Oregon for my husband’s job in 2010, I provided leader, team and organization development support as an employee inside typical corporate environments (think financial services, software, aerospace and defense). Since there were no companies in Hood River at that time big enough to have a staff Organization Development job, I started my own consultancy serving small businesses in our community.
I am at a Consulting Psychology conference, awaiting a breakout session on Values. Ordinarily I’d be drawn to sessions about measuring a leader’s behavior change from coaching to demonstrate a return on investment.
At this moment in my life, I am reflecting on a value I hold deeply - Authentic Relationships, which is rooted in a basic human need for connection. Why Authentic Relationships? The first reason is that when life happens and stuff gets real, transactional relationships offer no room for error. Yuck. The second is that Authentic Relationships give you the courage to step into the discomfort when you are unsure what to say but show up anyway to be present with people in their suffering. I want to feel that safety and offer that safety in my relationships.
In my last post, I shared the Hartman Performance Diamond as a model to think about the four key enablers to effective employee performance. Those were 1-Expectation Clarity, 2-System for Success, 3-Competence, and 4-Motivation.
When I conduct assessments to uncover why team members are not performing well, the most frequent breakdown I find is Expectation Clarity, which I recently covered. The next most frequent breakdown I see is in the area of Motivation.
You might be asking yourself, “What in the world does strategic planning have to do with a Red Gucci Purse?” My answer to that would be EVERYTHING!
It’s the beginning of the year. You’ve updated your strategic plan, including your 2017 goals, and are getting back to business at hand. This is great, but how do you keep focused on achieving those goals while keeping everything else going? And for multi-step goals, at what point do you claim success?
After several years of writing many proposals with mixed success, here are the key lessons I have learned for writing a proposal that’s a win for you and the client.
What’s the problem? Following a professional-looking cover page, start the body of the proposal with a summary of the client organization and their presenting problem. This shows that you were listening and reminds them about the agony of their current situation. If it is possible to describe how the issue impacts their business in terms of cost, schedule, quality or customer relations, this helps to convey the return on their investment in your offer.