Forbes Council Quotes By Shelley D. Smith 2020

Shelley SmithBlog, Executive Coaching, Leadership Development, Workplace Culture

2020 Forbes Expert Quote Recap

Over the past year, I have had the pleasure of contributing to several “Ask the Experts” Forbes Articles via the Forbes Coaches Council. The following provides a recap of my quotes and a link to the full articles.

Enjoy! Culture Matters – how will you make an impact as a Courgeous Leader in your workplace culture today?

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15 Ways That Leaders Can Sharpen Their Active Listening Skills
Inquire More And Talk Less

It’s plain and simple: Ask questions, get curious and then shut up and listen. Observe more; inquire more; talk less. It is a simple concept that most don’t effectively put into action. Leaders have to dive in to understand the actions being taken and, again, that means asking questions, getting out of your own head and intentionally putting on another lens by truly listening and repeating what you heard. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


14 Engaging Ways To Connect With And Inspire Virtual Audiences
Ask Good Questions And Be Curious

Ask good questions, become more curious about the responses and repeat what you heard before putting together a plan. Communication must be intentional whether you are in person or on phone or video. Why are you talking, and what are you trying to accomplish? If you aren’t clear, you aren’t kind, and you won’t get the outcome you seek. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


How Business Leaders Thrive: 16 Surprising Habits To Practice Daily
Choose A Maximum Of Three Specific Tasks Per Day

Being intentional about the day means backing up your goals for a year into quarters, into months, into weeks, into days and into your calendar. Set no more than three very specific tasks daily that will move you and your team forward toward achieving your set goals and desired outcomes. Don’t take your eye off the main focus; when you do, you become reactive versus proactive and intentional. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Traits Of Successful People That All Business Leaders Should Cultivate
Observant Decisiveness

Two things are essential: listening and being decisive (quickly). Listening, observing, gathering information quickly—these features lead to quick decisions and a leader’s ability to get beyond the mountaintop and forecast the future. When you do so, you are more likely to prepare for necessary pivots that others may not see coming. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


13 Critical Skills All Business Leaders Need To Cultivate Today

Truly understanding another person’s situation without necessarily experiencing it takes skill, heart, desire and intention. With empathy, a leader can build deeper bridges to trust. With trust, your leadership and team foundations are set up for accountability and to achieve results. Healthy relationships in teams create high performance and highly engaged team members. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


11 Core Things That Business Leaders Should Not Change During A Crisis
Organizational Structure

You should avoid reorganizing your structure without properly thinking through your current strengths and those needed for tomorrow’s world. Look at the current hardwiring of your team members, your current strategies, the fits and the gaps, and then intentionally create a go-forward plan. Moving too quickly, without analysis, may end in missed curation and final creation of your long-term vision. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Too Many Projects? 14 Clear Signs Of Overload And How To Dial Back
You Keep Rescheduling Meetings And Not Taking Action

Red flags include frequently missing deadlines, rescheduling meetings or having too many meetings and no time to move into execution mode on a project. If your team is exhausted, stretched too thin or coming to you with more questions than in the past, stop the madness. Remap problems and suggested solutions into “do,” “doing” and “done” modes of importance. What projects give you the biggest wins? Reprioritize. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


11 Surprising Things Every New Entrepreneur Should Know About Leadership
Building Authentic Rapport Is Crucial

Building authentic rapport is both king and queen of true leadership. Follow the Platinum Rule versus the Golden Rule, which means treat others the way they want to be treated rather than how you would want to be treated. Lastly, ask more questions; listen more and talk far less. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


14 Masterful Ways To Foster Curious And Innovative Teams
Building Authentic Rapport Is Crucial

Building authentic rapport is both king and queen of true leadership. Follow the Platinum Rule versus the Golden Rule, which means treat others the way they want to be treated rather than how you would want to be treated. Lastly, ask more questions; listen more and talk far less. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


16 Positive Ways To Stand Out As A Leader Among More Experienced Peers
Make Sure You Offer Relevant Knowledge

Whatever you add to any conversation, make sure it is relevant. Ask clarifying questions before offering opinions. Ensure you are keeping up with your own personal development to continually up your game. Staying in the “now” with trends allows you to add valuable knowledge to conversations as well as grow your own experience. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Never Too Late: 11 Tips To Help Busy Professionals Master A New Skill
Study In 20-Minute Chunks

Break it up into 20-minute chunks to take in what I call “brain food.” You can lock in those times on your schedule weekly for personal development. Research, webinars, side-by-side observations and podcasts all offer great ways to broaden your knowledge. Then, practice what you have absorbed. The same applies to learning both soft and hard skills. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


13 Savvy Tips Leaders Can Use To Get Better At Prioritizing
Align Priorities To Your Bigger Goals

If your priorities don’t align to the bigger goals, then why are you doing them? Every function and task must get you closer to your goals. If not, they aren’t priorities, period. That means building rapport with your team, too. Your team is what gets you there. They should always be a priority. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


16 Ways To Make Tough Workplace Conversations More Constructive
Frame An Outcome-Oriented Perspective

Framing and reframing the need to have the conversation is key to begin with. Frame it from an outcome-oriented perspective. Frame what has happened, who it has affected or could affect, and develop a go-forward plan that includes all parties in the conversation. Circling the conversation around what “right” looks like in your workplace culture, and using that lens to frame the conversation, is key as well. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Commonly Overlooked Ways To Boost Profits And Revenue
Reduce Employee Turnover

Employee turnover is the most obvious area to tackle, but it is surprisingly overlooked as a norm. Turnover is expected. Often, companies don’t try to get to the root cause of it, even when it’s the manager that’s at the root. Adding to your bottom line starts and stops with employee engagement. You can’t have that with turnover. Turnover is the sucking sound of your profits draining. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


14 Ways To Build A Solid Crisis Management Strategy
Document Processes And Do Drills

Asking tough questions to see what is on the other side of the mountain is essential. Ask yourself about every possible pitfall, problem and detour that can (and will) happen, and then plan for them. Document workflows and processes, role play and do spontaneous drills involving a variety of team members who will take on different lead roles in the crisis to boost their problem-solving momentum and critical thinking. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


14 Ways To Build More Meaningful Professional Relationships
Learn What Makes People Tick At Work And At Home

Lines separating home and work are blurred now. That means you need to know your team in both arenas. Learning what makes them tick (their “why”) without crossing the line is essential. More than ever before, it’s important that their values align with the company’s greater shared purpose in today’s workplace culture. Bottom line, and no secret here: Get to know your team. That creates meaning, in and of itself. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Reach The Next Executive Level With These 14 Career-Advancing Tips
Compare Your Behavioral Strengths

Compare your current job description to the next level. Then compare your behavioral strengths and gaps to the next role. Be the best at your current role and provide guidance to a replacement as mentoring proves valuable in getting ahead. It is a great way to grow as a leader and bring another along, too. Being a multiplier of leaders is a win-win! Finally, ask for specific feedback on your gaps. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Strategies To Help Your Team Develop A Strong Work Ethic
Define Work Ethic Within Your Culture

First, define what “right” looks like around the words “work ethic” inside of your workplace culture. Make it actionable in every way, so they know “it” when they see it, do it, believe it. Always put your words into action, walk the talk and you will inspire others to follow the work ethic you are looking for. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Effective Ways Leaders Can Communicate Core Business Values To Employees Create A Culture Playbook Around Your Values
Communicating core values is best done by creating a culture playbook around each of your core values.

Each page properly crafts what “right” looks like, feels like and sounds like inside the walls of your company. What does the value really mean, and when and how does “right” show up? When we define it, build it and maintain it, it is easy to see. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Struggling To Find Good Talent?  15 Ways To Switch Up Your Hiring Strategy
Market The Role In Unique Ways

First, fully understand what characteristics you are looking for in the role and in the person. Then, market in a different way. Have quotes from team members or quick 30-second video messages from the hiring manager included in the job ad. Do and say something authentic about working with you, the team and the organization to showcase the workplace culture and values. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


16 Top Tips For Building Company Culture From Scratch
Create A Culture Playbook

Culture playbooks set the tone, capture the tone, continue the tone of what right looks like inside of your company walls. What you and they think, believe, do, say, see and hear around your vision, your mission, your value statements and, of course, your culture statement. Capturing it in writing, on videos and in pictures from every team member joining along the way keeps the culture guardrails on. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Afraid Of Confrontation? 13 Useful Strategies For Approaching Your Boss With NegativeFeedback
Bring Suggestions Instead

First, create trust in the relationship that feedback is agreed upon. If you desire helpful feedback from your supervisor, then you need to approach your supervisor with the same intention. Don’t bring problems or criticism, but do bring eye-opening moments and suggestions that if we stay on this path, then X is likely to happen. If we want to achieve X, then perhaps we should approach this differently. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Team Building: Nine Methods For Improving Your Employees’ Morale
Create Actionable Core Values

Make your core values actionable. Ask your team how a core value will show up. Ask an employee about what they hear, say, do or feel. What action can make this core value literally come alive? You can have this conversation at stand-up morning huddles and then celebrate aligned behavioral actions to your core values, mission, and vision statement. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


Feeling Negative? 16 Ways To Boost Your Optimism
Write Out ‘Can’ Vs. ‘Can’t’ Lists

Thinking through and even writing down what can work versus what can’t work is a very effective way to shift your mindset. You are then looking at lists instead of thinking through negative thoughts. For every negative “can’t,” write an opposing positive “can.” Asking yourself “if I do” versus “if I don’t” is the same process. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


12 Ways The Gig Economy May Evolve In 2020 And How It Will Impact The Business World
The Traditional Worker Role Fading Even Quicker

As Generation Z begins to enter the workspace, the traditional worker as we “know it” will begin to fade even quicker. Gen Zs have grown up seeing their parents work multiple jobs, take on gigs and become entrepreneurs. The gig economy will no longer be a trend, but the norm. The impact on businesses will either make them more agile and innovative or they will find themselves in a world of hurt for workers. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


13 Steps Business Owners Should Take To Inject Humanity Back Into Customer Service
Meet With Clients Quarterly

Meet with your clients quarterly, in person. Find out what is working and what isn’t working. How can you further assist with other resources in your rolodex or can you be a sounding board? Challenge them and extend their possibilities in thinking. Provide them with “brain food” to deepen your relationship as an invaluable resource. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


10 Ways Create A More Diverse, Inclusive Workplace
Ask For Anonymous Solutions

Ask what problem your business needs to solve. What is your current pain point? Give a variety of members on the team the opportunity to lay out how to solve the problem without placing names on the suggestions. It is amazing when we deflect bias and simply look at solutions for a more agile workforce that is included (seen, valued and heard). – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Ways To Prepare For Your Company’s Next Generation Of Leaders
Create Self-Development Plans With Each Employee

Succession planning should always be a part of the business objectives. This means both vertically and horizontally. Every member of the team should have a plan for self-development that aligns with their team development, department development and ultimately the overall business objectives of the entire organization. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


13 Ways Entrepreneurs Can Align Their Personal And Company Brands
Let Your Actions Speak For You

Our actions say it all. Alignment to the mission, vision, core values, culture statements and overall brand come from our actions. It is not enough to say it or have it on the wall or in the handbook—you must show up daily. Let your actions do the talking. How you interact with the team, the community, the board, your clients and your prospects must align with your branding. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


13 Tips For Saving Money And Staying Lean Even When Business Is Booming
Designate Your Money

Always have a list of where your money goes. Meaning, as you make money and/or need money, know what projects will pay for which expenses or long-term dreams. This works to help you focus and help you save. It can be a fun game to play with yourself too—unlimited income, but clear intentions to where the money goes as you make it. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport


15 Ways To Better Support Remote Employees
Communicate And Set The Tone

Remote workers need one-on-one time just like office members do. They also need group time. Just because someone works remotely doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be included “virtually” in all team meetings. The same goes for training. – Shelley Smith, Premier Rapport