C-Suite Network™

Growth Leadership Personal Development

What’s Your Leadership Style?

Leadership Style

What is your leadership style? In a February 2020 blog posting on HubSpot, Braden Becker lists eight common leadership styles: 

  • Democratic
  • Autocratic
  • Laissez-Faire 
  • Strategic
  • Transformational
  • Transactional
  • Coaching
  • Bureaucratic

What almost everyone forgets is that to be a leader, you need people to lead. Whatever you call them: Employees, Teammates, Associates, Peers, Co-Workers, Partners, Staff, Colleagues or Collaborators—how well you’re able to engage with them, and your leadership style, will determine your success or failure as a leader.  Being a leader automatically implies you have a relationship with the people around you. And suddenly, your skills as a leader require you also to have skills connecting with and managing other human beings.

A friend of ours was president of a global advertising agency. People who worked for him loved him, respected him, and were in awe of his mind and his knowledge of marketing. But one of his direct reports also knew his weak spot: “[He’s] like the drum major of a college band at the halftime show. He comes out first or bursts out of the band wearing that beautiful fur hat and pumping his baton in time to the music. Then he ups his gait and starts striding down the field two to three yards at a time. But he forgets to look back to see if the band is following.”

What good is being a leader if you don’t engage your followers?

Professional Coaching is a Smart Strategy

If you want to get to the top of your game and stay there, you should add a coach to your organization or your toolbox; it’s a smart strategy. A professional coach. Not a “therapist.” Not a “trainer.” Not someone with a “method.” An individual or organization with the ability to understand what you’re looking to achieve and can help you get there. 

Tennis star Naomi Osaka has a coach—Wim Fissette. When they interviewed him after Naomi’s 2021 Australian Open victory, he articulated exactly what Mastery Under Pressure is all about: “When her attitude is good, her mind is very clear what she needs to do, what she wants to do and then she plays well.” All of those attributes are learned skills…and you should learn what the pros already know.

Benchmark Athletes and Artists

As we wrote in our blog about professional coaching, business leaders have a blind spot. Probably acquired while getting our MBA degrees. Most business schools studied…businesses. Very few business schools look outside the corporate universe to give us a smart strategy to apply to our jobs and careers. And what’s the smartest strategy of all?

Let It Go

When you’re playing in the Super Bowl and the ref makes a blatantly bad call, what was Tom Brady’s smart strategy? When you’re playing in the U.S. Open final and your opponent is fighting with herself and the line judges, what was Naomi Osaka’s smart strategy? When you’re leading in The Masters and your tee shot goes into the rough, what was Tiger Woods’ smart strategy? Every great athlete and performer knows there’s plenty of time later to get upset, angry, frustrated, or annoyed. At the moment, they all have a shared talent. They know how to let it go.

It’s a Tool and a Technique

Knowing how to let it go is a shared attribute of the calmest, coolest leaders you know. In every field and every profession. And while a very few of them might come by that ability naturally, it’s a learned technique for the great majority of us. Some of us learn it sooner than others, but we can all learn how to not let the pressure of the moment get to us. It’s just one of the skills you’ll master in the Mastery Under Pressure program. And another reason why we say we’ll make your best, better.

Have you figured out your leadership style yet? 


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Growth Personal Development

How to Increase Your Financial IQ with Robert Kiyosaki


If you have never heard of Robert Kiyosaki, there’s a good chance you’ve heard of his book, Rich Dad, Poor Dad. After its release more than 20 years ago, it became an international best seller, boasting more than 30 million copies sold in over 90 countries and has been translated into dozens of languages. 


Robert and his wife Kim have spun the success of Rich Dad into a global empire including more books, coaching, and the most popular podcast on C-Suite Radio just to name a few, but did you know it all started with a board game? It’s called CashFlow and it’s all about business. 


“The two most important words in money and business are cash flow,” Robert said during a recent interview on All Business with Jeffrey Hayzlett. “For most people the cash is flowing out and what entrepreneurs have the ability to do is turn the cash flow in.”  


“Financial intelligence and financial IQ is ‘can you redirect the flow of your cash in or out?’ The average person without a financial education, the cash is flowing out faster than it’s coming in,” Robert said. 


“CashFlow” became a phenomenon in its own right back in the mid-1990s. People around the U.S. formed clubs to play the game and, in the process, learn financial education.  


“I always ask people the same question, ‘What does school teach you about money?’ For most people, it goes flat line after that. What they’ve been programmed with is go to school, get a job, work hard, and give your money to Wall Street.” Robert said. “That worked for a while, but it’s not working today.” 

Part of the marketing of the game was a brochure that evolved into the book Rich Dad, Poor Dad. 


“My whole concern was on financial education and the story of my rich dad, poor dad,” Robert said. “My poor dad was an academic genius, graduate from university in two years, Ph.D. at Stanford, University of Chicago, and Northwestern. But as you know, they don’t know much about money.” 


“My rich dad was a guy who was an entrepreneur, who never went to school, but because his father died when he was 13 and he took over the family business, I became an apprentice to my rich dad.” 


He continued, “The education is completely different, it’s the opposite of academics. So, I go home and catch hell (for) not doing my homework. Then I would go to my rich dad, and he never spoke about homework. It’s a couple of different worlds.” 


Some of the lessons Robert learned from his rich dad, you won’t find in textbooks. 

Robert shared with me his story of returning from the Vietnam War and asking his rich dad what “else” he needed to learn. 


“He (rich dad) says you have to learn how employees steal from you,” Robert said. 


Robert couldn’t believe what he heard. Employees steal? 


To learn this lesson, he got a job at a bar where he offered up this challenge “if you can figure out how the bartenders steal from us, you’ll be a rich man.” 


“I sat there for two years, I still can’t figure out how they stole that money,” Robert recalled. 


Lessons like that one from the bar, inspired Robert to expand the brochure into the book. Rich Dad, Poor Dad sold well in the business community. Then in 2000, it even caught Oprah Winfrey’s attention. 


“I was in Australia and (Oprah) called,” Robert remembered. “My wife took the call in Phoenix. She says ‘get home now!’ I had to fly all the way from Australia to Chicago. I didn’t know who Oprah is because as Marines, we don’t watch Oprah.” 


Robert said he went from being a complete unknown to an overnight success after being on The Oprah Winfrey Show. While the segment is more than 20 years old now, you can find it on YouTube, and plenty of the topics Robert and Oprah covered are still relevant today. 


“We just talked about the philosophy of being entrepreneurs, managing money, and not needing a paycheck,” Robert said. “My poor dad was an academic Ph.D, but he couldn’t live without a paycheck or a pension. My rich dad says, one of the goals of being an entrepreneur is you’ll never need a paycheck and a pension.  


With all this talk of the power, freedom, and hard work of becoming an entrepreneur, I had to know his advice for those looking to strike out on their own. 


“The hardest thing is putting that team around you,” Robert said. “You’ve gotta have great accountants, great attorneys, and it takes a while to find those guys. Because everyone is kind of self-interested if you know what I mean. They’re interested in your money. But today one of the greatest assets I have is my team, you know, my accountants, my stock guys, my real estate guys. It’s a team sport.”   


Robert and I talked about his favorite investments, what he thinks of cryptocurrency, and the details of his next book. He also offered up plenty of unprompted political takes. Robert’s not afraid to tell you what he’s thinking, that’s for sure.  


Click the player below to listen to our full conversation. 

Growth Management Personal Development

The Art of Communication . . .  Why it’s time to break the mold 

was visiting the office of a franchise owner a few months ago. While we were chatting, he happened to be checking his email. I noticed that he ignoring some messages, opening others for a quick look, forwarding some without looking at them, and deleting others. In other words, he was processing the contents of his in-box just like you and I do.  

But then I started asking about the messages he was getting from franchise headquarters.   

  • “Why didn’t you open that one?” I asked. He answered, “They’ve already sent me four emails reminding me to set up my new store displays, why bother to read one more?” Well, okay. But what if there was other information in that email too?
  • He opened another one from the home office and closed it in about one second, then explained, “It starts with the words, `Effective immediately . . .’ So effective immediately, I am postponing reading it until later in the day.” Again, the person who had sent that email was not connecting with the reader. 
  • When he didn’t even open another email, he explained, “I’ll open that later. All I get from the head of marketing is, `Everybody needs to do this . . . everybody needs to do that!’”

Problems like those are not uncommon in franchises. And let me say, they represent serious issues because communication is the lifeblood of every franchise system. If your messages don’t get through and you’re not truly being heard, your business – and theirs – will suffer.   

That’s why it’s time to break the mold. My goal in this article is to help you turn communications from your biggest headache into your most important asset. Here are solutions that are not theoretical – I have seen them work.  

Send Fewer, Better, Shorter Emails  

People today are bombarded with more and more information than ever before, thanks to emails, Facebook, Twitter, blogs, and websites. In an effort to be heard, it is tempting to respond by sending more and more communications. The problem is, your franchisees will become more overwhelmed and tune you out.  

One solution is to post detailed information on your company intranet. Then short emails from headquarters can simply say, “Click here to learn how.” You can even track how many people click through and know how many of them have actually looked.    

Open Each Communication with a “Why” and “What’s in It for Me?”   

Avoid opening emails with effective immediately” or “do this” and trumpet a benefit that readers want and need. One example? Your reader will increase store-wide profits by $100,000 a year because you are offering a training program that has already achieved that in every store and region where it has been tried.    

Communicate in an Energized and Positive Way  

Information and instructions come to life when you don’t just deliverThe key is to communicate your “Why” and “What’s in it for Me?” in positive ways that deliver excitement.   

Before you send each communication, review it and find opportunities to express more excitement. I have recently found that videoconferencing (such as the Zoom.com platform) offer a real opportunity to tell exciting news in energizing face-to-face to people. They see you and can feel your excitement directly.    

Cultivate a More Positive Company Culture  

You can’t fake a positive company culture. To supercharge the effectiveness of your communications, concentrate on building a company culture that is genuinely positive.  

Over the last few years, I have discovered an approach to becoming more positive that I call “The Three Things.” I first started using it in my family. I asked each person in my family to come to dinner prepared to talk about three things that happened during the day that made them feel happy. At first, my kids resisted. So did one of their friends, who happened to be staying with us. But then we began to notice that as we went through our days, we were on the lookout for good things to talk about at dinner. That process of always looking for good things, not bad, got us to begin to see the world in positive and motivating ways, not negative. The results exceeded all expectations, and I believe that similar approaches can reorient company cultures.  

Ingage Everyone in the Process of Change  

I would like to conclude this article with a case study. Back in 2013, the managers of a national consumer brand approached me. Their annual convention was coming up, an event attended by owners of their brand-specific stores across America. The executives were planning to unveil a new store design, and they wanted me to help them increase attendance at the convention.   

In previous years, only about 20% of storeowners had attended. And it was a very big priority to get as many of them as possible to attend. Without their buy-in on the new store design, its adoption and use would not be as successful as the company leaders were hoping.  

Company leaders were hoping that I could get as many as 40% or 50% of all store owners to come to the convention. But I surpassed that number and was actually able to get more than 85% of them to be there.  

How did I help this company achieve those dramatic results? I asked management a simple question. Instead of simply pulling the curtains off a new design at the convention, would they consider bringing three or four designs in progress and then allowing franchisees to make suggestions about them? Management agreed and showcased several new designs. After franchisees reviewed them, we encouraged them to make suggestions and refinements.  

In that way, I was able to shift the dynamic from, “They’re going to talk to me” to, “They’re going to talk with me.” That changed the whole meeting from “95% listen and 5% contribute” to “50% listen and 50% contribute.” What a difference. 

The result was not only a good design but also one that reflected the front-line, real-world intelligence that only storeowners could provide. People who provided input were excited about the design that resulted because they had enjoyed a role in creating it. I predict that as stores roll out the new design, their customers are going to love it – and that profits will increase. Great results like those can happen when you strive to communicate with people, not to them.  

About the Author  

Evan Hackel, the creator of the concept of Ingaged Leadership, is a recognized business and franchise expert and consultant. Evan is also a professional speaker and author.  

Evan is Principal and Founder of Ingage Consulting, a consulting firm headquartered in Woburn, Massachusetts. A leader in the field of training as well, Evan serves as CEO of Tortal Training, a Charlotte North Carolina-based firm that specializes in developing and implementing interactive training solutions for companies in all sectors. To learn more about Inage Consulting and Evan’s book Ingaging Leadership, visit Ingage.net 


Body Language Entrepreneurship Human Resources Negotiations Sales Skills Women In Business

“How To Win More Negotiations By Reading Body Language” – Negotiation Tip of the Week

“When truth becomes your enemy, you become disadvantaged. Reading body language will help you uncover hidden truths.” -Greg Williams, The Master Negotiator & Body Language Expert (click to Tweet)   Click here to get the book!

“How To Win More Negotiations By Reading Body Language”

People don’t realize they’re always negotiating.

Do you miss negotiation signals due to your failure to read body language accurately? Someone’s spoken words may suggest one thing, while their body language gestures may indicate something else. And the body language of “something else” is what should capture your attention. That is because those signals are essential to the negotiation process and your success in it.

Some people are excellent negotiators. And others are so-so negotiators. The difference between the negotiators that have reached a heightened ability and so-so negotiators is, the excellent ones observe the nonverbal signals emitted during negotiations. The so-so negotiators miss those signals. They do not realize they can negotiate better by reading body language.

Where do you reside between those two posts in your negotiations? Would you like to increase your negotiation skills by being able to read body language more accurately?

Continue, and you will discover how to read body language to increase your negotiation abilities. And by doing that, you will also improve your negotiation efforts.


Remember, you’re always negotiating!


Listen to Greg’s podcast at https://c-suitenetwork.com/radio/shows/greg-williams-the-master-negotiator-and-body-language-expert-podcast/


After reading this article, what are you thinking? I’d like to know. Reach me at Greg@TheMasterNegotiator.com


To receive Greg’s free “Negotiation Tip of the Week” and the “Negotiation Insight,” click here https://themasternegotiator.com/greg-williams/blog



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