Inspired Results Group With Diane Lloyd

One area that contributes to the turnover in the social profit sector is its hesitance to invest in leadership development. Many people who can’t find leadership opportunities in the sector either search for a greener pasture next door or find a different role altogether. Having successfully transitioned in her career from being a fundraiser to CEO in the social profit sector to becoming an executive coach, Diane Lloyd of Inspired Results Group sits down with host Douglas Nelson to share her career journey and what her thoughts are when it comes to closing that gap in leadership training and development. She talks about the skills needed for leaders, the importance of having a coach, and the ways CEOs can go about asking their board for a budget. What is more, Diane also shares her thoughts on the current pandemic and how leaders can navigate in this tough time.

Listen to the podcast here:

Inspired Results Group With Diane Lloyd

Our guest on the show is Diane Lloyd. She’s the CEO and Executive Coach at the Inspired Results Group based in Victoria, British Columbia. A former CEO and fundraiser in the social sector, she has been a leading advocate coach and friend of the sector and many leaders across the country. Welcome to the show, Diane.

Thanks, Doug. I’m looking forward to the conversation.

Diane, I wanted to have you on for a long time and I’m glad that we’re able to make it happen because I’m fascinated by the transition that you made in your career as a fundraiser, as a CEO in the social profit sector to becoming an executive coach. Can you tell us a little bit about what that journey was for you and what it was like? What caused you to set out on that path in the first place?

I was enjoying what appeared and felt like a successful fundraising career, had that classic experience of moving into management and then leadership roles, and found myself on an executive team where I didn’t see myself in my peer group. I randomly met a coach in 2009. This woman wanted to donate. She introduced herself as a leadership coach. In my head I was like, “What is a leadership coach?” I had coached in synchronized swimming in my early twenties. I thought I had this identity of coach way back then life took me in other directions. To realize that leadership coaching was a thing and was exciting, I hired her. I said, “I want to work with you. Let’s do this.”

When I worked with Terrell, my confidence as a leader shifted. I felt like I could be myself at that table, trust my voice, do things, lead in a way that felt aligned with my values and not necessarily replicating what I saw around me. After two years, I did that whole soul searching of what are the next twenty years of your professional life going to look like and how do you want to contribute to the world. I felt like I needed to circle back to that coach identity. That’s what inspired the journey. I wanted to be able to support leaders like Terrell had supported me to step into my true potential as a leader. That’s the very short story of that transition, Doug.

How’s your view of the sector changed from the vantage point of as an executive coach versus when you were an executive leader in the sector?

Taking care of yourself physically is going to help you mentally. Click To Tweet

I have a deeper appreciation for some of the themes that run across the sector, some of the leadership challenges that are the same and the complexity of working with boards. What I can see from this vantage point is where we feel like we’re alone in our leadership struggle or lack of confidence. We don’t know what to do and we think we’re the only one who hasn’t figured it out. Every leader feels like that. We all feel like we haven’t figured it all out. Somebody knows more than I do. I think I have more of a macro view of the sector and real empathy and appreciation for the complexity of leadership roles.

My observation around that is that we’re not as a sector or not preparing people for those roles. We’re good fundraisers or good program managers so we get promoted into these leadership roles with directors, VPs, executive directors and then it’s good luck send off or launch. Now that I work in a lot of other sectors, I have another appreciation for what it looks like to invest in leadership development. Philanthropy is not making that a priority in a way that supports leaders to be sustainable in those roles.

Is it a question of making it a priority or is it even an awareness? A lot of the leaders that we work with here at the Discovery Group, some have a great deal of self-awareness, some are willing to talk about their fraud complex, and others have no awareness of that but it seems to me that the sector isn’t aware that leadership development is necessarily a priority or even something that they should be doing with their director-level positions.

I’m quite involved with AFP and I know it has come out boldly to say leadership development is a priority. From a professional association for fundraisers, awareness and conversation are starting to happen. What I would be curious about is if people have self-awareness and the sector gets stuck in a bit of a scarcity mindset so are we investing in ourselves in leadership? Are we willing to advocate for that and make that a priority? A lot of people hesitate around that or feel guilty for advocating for themselves to be supported in that way. I see that happening as well.

We do a lot of work with boards on succession planning, both at the CEO level and at the vice president level. One of the questions we’ve learned to start asking, is there anyone in your organization that could step into this position? Often, the answer is no because organizations don’t have the management depth to have multiple leaders and waiting to choose from. Often, they don’t have the budgets for it. If you’re going to fill this position again in five years, who on your team would you want to be ready to step into that? That’s a difficult question for most boards to be able to answer because they don’t have the view of the staff but the CEOs have no problem identifying who on their team has that leadership potential. How do we close that gap to get the training and development for that level of leader to be able to assume that more senior positions in time?

It’s so good that you’re asking those questions and raising that awareness. It’s happening more than ever. Executive directors are under the gun for what’s right in front of me that I have to deal with that the long-term thinking and planning get pushed aside and then there’s a departure then all of a sudden, it’s a priority. This is part of the systemic challenge of longer-term planning, investing in longer-term horizons. Meanwhile, the urgent is right in front of them. I do think that tension exists. I don’t think this is about them. Poor intentions on people’s behalf or not wanting to develop others. There’s this priority and this urgency to deal with the here and now that gets in the way of those longer-term decision making, investing, mentoring and identifying potential talent.

I’m always struck by how quickly they can answer who on their team has that potential and then any follow up about, “What are you doing about it?” “Nothing.” What happens in the sector is people leave the organizations they’re with that they may otherwise be happy with but they need to find that challenge and way to grow. That contributes to the turnover in the sector. People looking for those leadership development opportunities either in a greener pasture next door or a different part of the sector to learn a new way of looking at the world.

DSP 6 | Inspired Results Group
Inspired Results Group: Philanthropy is not making leadership development a priority in a way that supports leaders to be sustainable in those roles.

 

The turnover is so challenging. It’s unfortunate that a lot of times executive directors know who they’d like to succeed them and they can identify that talent but they don’t tell that person what they’re thinking for whatever reason. They keep it to themselves sometimes so that wonderfully talented person, as you say, go somewhere else. Meanwhile, if they’d been in some conversations within the organization, they could see that they were valued and there was a path for them to grow. That’s another thing I’m trying to encourage which is more transparency and conversations. You’re not making promises, you’re having conversations and it’s okay to have those conversations. You don’t have to make commitments and promises.

I remember seeing you talk a number of years ago and you said that assumptions leaders make are the death of organizations at times.

I love that you remember that, Doug. I still have that slide in every single presentation I do.

It’s so true. I remember early on in my career leaving a position and saying to my boss at that time, “I’m leaving. I’ve got this opportunity to take on this challenge.” She said, “I was going to make this change.” At that time, I didn’t believe her but it was in retrospect and it was true. We just had never had that conversation.

What a missed opportunity for both of you.

I’ll say for me. One of the things that are always fascinating to me is someone who has worked with coaches in the past when I was in CEO roles and I believe in it as a way of getting better and sharpening your skills. What are the characteristics of people who are in that director of development or vice-president development role who raised their hand and say, “I’m ready. I want to have professional coaching?” Where are they at in their career when they’re asking that question when they’re calling you?

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This is a good thing that perception of working with a coach is now seen as an opportunity and it’s a positive thing where in the past, people might’ve felt like, “I’ve been told to work with a coach. There’s something wrong with me that needs to be fixed.” That is not the paradigm for successful coaching. For me, my ideal clients are motivated. They have a learner mindset and they are high performing. They want to learn, grow and see what else is possible. They’re open-minded, wanting to be challenged and learn. I always believe that leadership is such a learning journey. It’s like you’re never have arrived and be the perfect leader. There’s always so much to learn about ourselves, most of all, and then about others.

The number one thing I’m looking for is that growth mindset, learner mindset and recognizing that there is a skill gap or a knowledge gap between manager or director into ED. There are new skills and coaching may not be the place where you’re necessarily learning those skills but you can identify working with your coach, “Here are some learning gaps and what are some strategies to fill those gaps,” whether it’s taking some courses, working with a mentor, or whatever that is. You always say you can’t stay stuck or things won’t stay the same when you’re working with a coach because it’s all about momentum and moving forward. That answered the question in terms of the type of person. Does that resonate with what you think about the person?

The question that comes to mind is, what is the barrier that gets in the way of people who likely would benefit but they don’t do it? They don’t advocate and ask for the budget to work with a coach is one reason but more internal life. What holds people back from taking that step?

It’s a variety of things. Sometimes people deep inside could be an unconscious thing that don’t feel worthy of that investment or that growth. They avoid it may be because they’ve got that going on or there’s also fear. It’s like, “If I commit to that process, then something is going to happen or I’m going to get that new job.” Sometimes we’re a little bit scared of that so we might want to stay safe. That’s the thing about working with a coach. You’re going to grow and there’s going to be moments of discomfort around that because you’re learning, growing, being stretched and supported in that coaching space but it’s uncomfortable at times because you’re learning and growing. People avoid it because they want to stay safe where they are and that’s okay. Coaching is also still misunderstood a little bit so that might also get in the way.

It’s misunderstood that this is performance management, “We’re going to coach you out of the organization. Your performance isn’t any good so you go spend a few minutes or an hour with Diane for a few weeks and then decide to quit.” I know that’s not how you work.

That myth may still exist out there. There’s some mystique around working with a coach. I always try to dispel those myths at the beginning of a conversation with someone so that they understand. It’s a partnership and I call it individualized professional development because it’s totally centered around you, what you need, and where you want to go which is different than going to a conference or taking a course. Think of it as an individualized development plan.

The number one trust-building behavior is asking for help. Click To Tweet

I that very much. What language the CEO who’s thinking, “I want to do that. I have been thinking about this. I’m going to take this step.” How do they go about asking their board for the budget? How do they put that in the budget?

Any pro-D investment whether it’s conferences, courses, or coaching, the three Cs. It all fits in that same budget line. Where coaching can elevate is if there’s been a lot of learning, conferences, courses or what have you, there are tons of great data that shows when we connect that learning to the coaching experience, the integration and the application of the learning is exponential. If you’re positioning this with your board, you can talk about the fact that coaching helps you apply learning in a contextual and individualized way.

It helps you grow into your potential. It helps you reveal some blind spots or things you didn’t see that is going on that you can have a look at in a unique and supported confidential space. That’s my other little pitch here if you’re in an ED or CEO role. I’ll be curious if you can relate to this. It’s a lonely role. Coaching is about a thinking partnership and there are things you want to think through, talk through, and figure out strategy-wise or interpersonal stuff. That’s a hard thing sometimes to do with a board member or your staff. Where do you go that you get this neutral sounding board and thinking partnership?

That’s what coaching provides. It’s a safe space to explore your thinking and figure things out. I did an ED interim role years ago. I took it because I wanted to walk the talk. I’m talking to all these leaders. Now, I got to go back into the sector, be one with all of these new tools in my toolbox and I hired a coach right away. It’s like, “I’m going to need a thinking space.” There were so many challenging conversations that I needed to step into in that interim role and talking it through with my coach the day before to get clear on my approach, how I want it to show up and what I wanted the outcome to look like. It was invaluable to me to have that neutral space to talk things through.

That’s something I hear a lot in my conversations with leaders is that there’s no one that they can talk to. They can’t talk to their team if they’re having problems with the board because that undermines the board and they can’t talk to their board about challenges because the board is the boss. It is a position designed to isolate. There is strength in that if you don’t stay isolated, to be the leader, and to have that thinking partner, have that strategic safe space to challenge yourself and to think through things is important.

Hopefully, that answers the question of how to build this into the budget line in a strategically positioned way.

I had a conversation with someone and I was saying, “What do you want your professional development to be? What are you looking at?” “I don’t think it’s a good use of money.” I was blown away because this person is exceptionally high performing. This is the kind of person that organizations should be investing in to strengthen and build up so that she’ll be the administrative leader, not just the emotional and psychic leader of the organization.

DSP 6 | Inspired Results Group
Inspired Results Group: When we connect learning to the coaching experience, the integration and the application of the learning is exponential.

 

It is to make the case and helping people to make the case is important. I want to shift gears. There’s this pandemic going on. It’s still going on. We’re recording this in October 2020 and it will air by the end of October 2020. I assume the pandemic will still be going on but I’m curious what you’re hearing from leaders, not just in the social profit sector but in general, as we enter the second half of year one of this pandemic. What are leaders feeling and what’s changed over the course of the pandemic?

We know that leaders are feeling exhausted and tired. That reality is kicking in. People may or may not have had a break in the summer but we’re into it now and winter is ahead. In every conversation I’m having, I can feel the exhaustion and there’s still a long way to go. A lot of the conversations I’m having have themes around personal resilience, what does that look like for you and what are the things that you need to do to support yourself or you’re going to choose to do to support yourself. I’ll back up and say what this pandemic is teaching us is all those things we’ve been hearing for years about mindfulness and mind-body connection, taking care of yourself physically is going to help you mentally.

All these things we’ve been hearing about, the pandemic is showing us how critical it is to take care of ourselves first so that we can show up for others. We can’t get away with the sloppy habits anymore. I’ve had to stop drinking wine every night because it is not working for me in terms of showing up to be the best version of me every day. It became a numbing crutch for me over the tough times of the pandemic like some unhealthy habits or not exercising enough. I’m talking about mindfulness but not practicing mindfulness. All of these things, if I feel the cracks are showing, were falling into them now. I can take a breath and see if any of that resonating with you.

It takes me back to our conversation about how isolating being a leader can feel. A lot of the individuals that we’re working with are talking about calling it cheerleading fatigue or rally fatigue. If you view your role as a leader, helping prep and coach everybody else up to feel good and feel supported, that does those cracks that people are falling into are quite deep.

The other theme I’ll weave in here which I started talking about early on in the pandemic is, I noticed across sectors and a lot in fundraising. We didn’t adjust our expectations of ourselves and the organization. I’m not saying we should stop fundraising. It’s not about that but we are a go, go, go. There’s never enough. We always need to do more sector. Everybody was still holding those, go, go, go expectations when the reality was, they’ve got kids on their lap. They’re trying to figure out virtual stuff. It’s a little bit different. We’re more familiar now with how to work virtually. For most of us, kids are back in school. It feels a little more normal, but we’ve still got this unique context in front of us. We start having some honest conversations about what expectations need to shift, not be fearful of both having the conversation, and readjusting expectations. If we don’t adjust those expectations, we’re going to burn people out. That’s a real risk.

We’re seeing people have already been burnt out, coming back, and headed that way again in some cases. Everyone that has worked with you, Diane, and talks about how practical you can make things, what are some practical tools that leaders can use to avoid that burnout for their team and for themselves?

As leaders, we need to be willing to bring people together, create the process for those conversations to happen, and co-create solutions. Click To Tweet

In terms of other practical things, I do think that taking care of yourself physically, mentally, emotionally and thinking about those as three different ways you need support is important. I don’t know if it’s practical but the permission I’ll give everyone is to make that unique to you. What works for me isn’t necessarily going to work for the next person. I see people trying to, “I need to do it like so-and-so.” Look at what works for you and be okay with creating a plan that works for you in terms of that physical wellbeing.

You don’t have to run marathons, but you could walk every day, get some fresh air or try to access some nature here and there or whatever that is for you. I have a Chocolate Lab now so if I get out with the dog, it makes me happy. Even simple things like getting off of our devices and not being so tied to our screens are practical and helpful to give and that gives you that mental break. We’re all zoomed fatigued in social media. It’s not necessarily helping us emotionally either. That’s something. I’ve got clear about who are my close people.

One thing I struggled with a lot in the pandemic has shown me is leaning on other people. I show up for people all the time, but I started to realize like, “I’m not good at leaning on other people to support me in the friendship realm other than my coach.” Being intentional about who you lean on for support and being comfortable with asking for support or talking about where you’re struggling with close, trusted friends, that can be so helpful. This super cape type of persona that we can take on as leaders in this sector, we can take the cape off and lean on others. I encourage you to do that.

That advice to take the cape off is great because for the leaders who are in charge of small teams or large teams that are feeling they need to make it okay for everyone else, at least in the work context. I don’t know of a single leader that we’re working with that isn’t worried about one or more members of their teams outside of work as they’re going through this pandemic. That cape is what keeps people going and strong. I also think it’s contributing to people being tired.

I’m going to say quickly too, the vulnerability factor. I love Brené Brown’s work. I’m doing a lot of facilitation of her work. The vulnerability piece, as leaders, we sometimes work hard at avoiding that. Brené’s research showed that the number one trust-building behavior is asking for help. I thought I wouldn’t think of that but when we put the cape on and in her language, that can also be seen as armor. It’s like, “I’m good. I’ve got it all figured out. Don’t touch me.” When we’re ready to take the cape off and show some of our humanness with our staff or with others, it’s quite a trust-building exercise. You have to manage that. You don’t want to overshare or take that too far but it’s okay to let people know you’re finding this challenging too. What can we do together to support one another or do things differently but be willing to take the cape off a little bit with your team is also important?

What’s the difference between vulnerability and oversharing? I think that holds a lot of leaders back from saying I’m having a bad day too or I can’t be the cheerleader which is one way of being vulnerable without going into a lot of details that people may feel like it undermines them as the leader.

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The definition of vulnerability that Brené works with them that I’m sharing with folks is vulnerability is stepping into risk, uncertainty and emotional exposure. Like it or not, we’re all in there. Things are feeling risky, uncertain and we’re all feeling emotionally exposed in one way or another. Coming into a meeting and being transparent to both, whether you’re tired, don’t have the positive mindset that I usually have or I’d like to have. I’m going to be open about the fact that this is where I’m at and I’m going to be gentle with myself around that and let you know. You don’t have to talk about all the things that are going on at home or go deep into sharing. Letting people know where you’re at can be quite connecting then I can show that, “I’m not feeling positive.” Someone else in the room might be having a good day. They’re like, “I can bring positive with you. I’m having a good day. Lean on me for that.” It is an example.

It speaks to what do we mean by culture and organizations in the social profit sector. A culture that they can have those kinds of conversations that can support that vulnerability as you define it. It’s more rare than I’d like it to be. Is that your experience?

This is the opportunity that’s in front of us to rethink our definition of leadership or how we want to show up. We don’t have to have all the answers. That’s another way to think about vulnerability. Nobody has all the answers. We’ve seen that in our political leaders and all of this playing out. What we can do though is show up truthfully, authentically, share what we know, share what we don’t know, and then be willing to call it the messy middle and have the messy middle conversations where you’re trying to co-create a solution.

I see a lot of leaders that figure out the most complex thing that’s ever hit their organization, “I’ve got to go to my office, figure it out, come out, and tell everybody what we’re doing.” That’s not working anymore. We might’ve been able to get away with that before but now, it’s not working. We need to be willing to bring people together, create the process for those conversations to happen, and co-create solutions because then everybody is bought in new ideas you’ve never thought of before are going to emerge but we can no longer isolate and figure this out on our own.

One of the things that I see and I often call it the magician’s curse which is the leader goes into their office, works hard and she comes out and says, “Tada.” When you’re at a magic show, the “tada” is the best part because something wonderful has happened, it’s been revealed, and it’s something we weren’t expecting. If you’re doing a strategic plan, if you’re changing the organization and you’re responding to the pandemic, that big reveal, people aren’t going to be awe-inspired by it as they would at a magician show. They’re going to be afraid of it or resistant to it because they haven’t been able to participate in it. When leaders get into that magician’s curse or they put on the magician’s hat, they’re going to reveal something for us. That, to me, always is a danger zone when leaders get there.

The reality is people are going to be more excited and bought in if they feel like they’ve been part of the solution creating it. Again, we’ve heard that for years in leadership. Now, we have to practice that. That’s vulnerable because you’re not in control of everything as the leader and things might happen that you’re not sure that you can implement that or it wasn’t your idea so you’re not feeling as connected to it. That’s vulnerable leadership. I call it courageous leadership. It’s courageous to be inclusive. Think of yourself as a facilitator. You need to facilitate conversations, decision making and solutions. It’s not siloed decision making, it’s facilitated decision making. That’s a skill we haven’t taught leaders.

That facilitation is exactly how I talk to CEOs about working with their boards. It is not to present your work for a thumbs-up, thumbs-down approval. It is not a trip into the lion’s den or Dragon’s den. It is about facilitating a conversation and making sure that the people around the table have the information and the context they need to provide their best value to the question that’s on the table. As leaders of social profit organizations, that’s our responsibility. It’s to make sure that our boards understand our business, our organizations, and how they work well enough that they can provide that great advice. That is facilitation from the day someone puts their hand up to be considered as the director until when you give their present after ten years as board chair. You got to keep a bright focus on facilitation.

DSP 6 | Inspired Results Group
Inspired Results Group: If you spend all your time and energy trying to “fix yourself,” you’re going to lose all the momentum you could have had if you were connected to your strengths, investing in them, and putting yourself in roles that leverage your strengths.

 

Here we are talking about that using that word and in my whole time in the sector that never came up. We need to be more transparent about that or talk about it more and train people in those facilitation skills. The greatest gift coaching gave me was trusting, asking great questions, helping people discover the answers within themselves and letting go of thinking that I have any answers or expertise on a topic but create the space for someone else to figure it out. That’s one of my favorite skills.

When we’re talking to fundraisers, we say, “You don’t want to sit across the table and negotiate with your donor. You want to sit beside your donor as a strategic advisor and be able to have genuine, authentic conversations with them in that way, their financial advisor, lawyer, or business manager would be able to speak with them.” For CEOs working with their boards, it’s a paradigm that’s reinforced by every governance book you can find is, what is the CEO’s role? What is the board’s role?

It’s usually a table. On the left-hand side is the CEO, the right-hand side of the board and it sets up a conflict or defined territory that none shall pass and no toes should go over any lines. The effective organizations that I’ve been in as a CEO are when the board is willing to bring their best business minds, their best selves, their best advice to the table in an environment where they understand the context. It is hard to facilitate that. It takes an exceptionally strong board chair to make that happen but if CEOs don’t have now, they are going to need even more. The best CEOs spend most of their time facilitating those kinds of conversations.

We should create a course around that. Let’s go create something.

The final thing I want to talk to you about at the time that we have is change. My operating theory for our sector is the world around our sector is changing so much more quickly than the world inside of our sector. The number one threat is not the pandemic, the economy or the stock market. It is our inability to avoid disruption, whatever that ends up looking like, but the world is changing faster than we are. It’s my personal mission to help organizations be prepared to change more quickly and take advantage of the opportunities that are in front of them. You have a very unique perspective on the sector. What’s your take on change within the social profit sector?

Fear of the unknown is what gets in the way of innovation and creativity doing things differently. What it might take is force change because of the pandemic. Fear creates a neurological response that activates that amygdala part of our brain and we don’t think at our best when that amygdala is in charge. Our amygdala is driving a lot of our thinking and behavior. If we want people to think innovatively and creatively, I’m geeking out on my neuroscience thing, that prefrontal cortex is where our best thinking happens.

Fear of the unknown is what gets in the way of innovation and creativity. Click To Tweet

That’s where innovation, creativity and embracing change is going to come from. To try to bring this into a practical level, if you’re in your organization, craving something different, alleviating the fear around it so that people can think at their best and feel some safety in the process. Bring some thinking from the outside or from a different sector, be courageous enough to invite in some very different thinking or different operating systems from other sectors and businesses to shake things up and help you think differently. We’re looking at ourselves, we’re talking to ourselves in the sector, and not a lot of new thinking is emerging. It’s bold. I don’t want to sound negative, but you set me up for that.

What we view and what’s commonly talked about as the real challenges for the sector are symptoms of the larger society is change and what’s going to be expected of our organizations. If we’re not changing, we’re going to get run over. To be blunt about it, I can think of dozens of people that have lost their jobs because they weren’t doing anything, changing, moving and able to adjust. I can think of very few people in the sector who’ve been dismissed because they did something positive.

They’ve made a positive change or they made a change in their organization. We all have is fear. It doesn’t surprise me that fear exists. It surprises me that the reaction is often to do nothing because if you look around, the one who’s doing nothing are the ones that aren’t still with the organization when there’s a downturn, pandemic or when a new CEO comes in and needs to change the team-up. All of the incentives are there for a change and we’re held back. I’m fascinated by how we can help unlock the potential of people to change as fast as the world around them.

This is the opportunity. We talk about partnership in the sector and that word’s been around forever. We need to think about what that means now to be in partnership with our donors, our board members, community and be willing to let go of control a little bit in order to step fully into some of these partnerships. That’s where a lot of possibilities lie rather than being in a protective hunkered down mode or that’s partnering with other charities too.

A number of our audiences are people who are already CEOs, executive directors in their organization, but there’s also a lot that is wanting to take the leap into those positions either in the near future or down the road. Even if someone is reading and wanting to double down on the job that they have and take more of a leadership role in the organization they’re in or the role they have, what’s the question that someone should ask themselves before they take that leadership jump?

I would say reflecting on who you are and what your natural strengths are. Invest $30 in the CliftonStrengths Assessment. Get your head around what you naturally bring and how that can inform your future. Some of those tools early on for me and my career empowered me to think more about leadership and have the confidence to know that I have some natural abilities that are going to serve me here and then I’ll learn the tactical stuff. That can be a journey to understand who you are and what you naturally bring. That’s the starting point for sure. There’s a whole lot of other things. If I only get one thing, that would be my one piece is to know thy self. The good and the areas for growth.

Should someone spend more time on improving the areas for growth or doubling down on the areas of strength?

Invest in your strengths and be aware of where you have some gaps. If you spend all your time and energy trying to “fix yourself” you’re going to lose all the momentum you could have had if you were connected to your strengths, investing in them and putting yourself in roles that leverage your strengths.

Diane, thank you so much for making time for this conversation. I appreciate it. I look forward to sharing it with our audience soon.

Thank you for the conversation. It’s my favorite topic and it was great to connect with you.

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About Diane Lloyd

DSP 6 | Inspired Results GroupInspired Results Group creates brave leaders and courageous cultures through digital leadership programs, customized training and personalized leadership coaching. We love working with open-hearted, growth mindset millennials and generation X leaders who are making a positive impact in the world. As a company, were are on a mission to end the era of command and control, and usher in the age of enlighten and empower.

Coaching with Inspired Results Group
Being coached by a member of the IRG team is an opportunity to work with a thinking partner (coach) who will help you activate your strengths and elevate your potential in any context. Coaching is an opportunity to explore personal, business, leadership or team opportunities and challenges in a safe, supportive and stretching conversation that will help you access new and empowering answers to the questions you bring to your coaching session. You will leave your coaching session with more clarity and confidence, while feeling inspired to get the results you have been seeking!

Team Coaching with Inspired Results Group
We deliver a range of team coaching programs with tools that include SDI 2.0 (Motivation, Values and Conflict), Dare to Lead™ and Conversational Intelligence®. Our toolbox is deep and we can bring these tools into a virtual context to support teams to stay connected, inspired and performing at their highest level!

Sign up for our FREE 7-Day Micro-Course – Courageous Leadership in Times of Change and Uncertainty here: https://inspiredresultsgroup.mykajabi.com/courageous-leadership-micro-course

Book a Discovery Call Here: https://live.vcita.com/site/inspiredresultsgroup/online-scheduling?staff=d4ecff328c99afc5&service=wye7typ85rpj6fp7

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