You wake in the morning, get ready for your workday, arrive at your company or laptop, work a full day, return home and repeat… taking for granted all of the things, big and small, you’ve effortlessly accomplished in a day! Whether you’re a Front-Line employee, Manager, or the CEO… it never ceases to amaze me just how much we get done in a day and it stems from how much we know… without even knowing that we know it!
You may currently be on auto-pilot getting your job done daily, but when you look closer… you know a lot about your job, how the organization wants you to do things, how you may actually do them that works best, who to talk with to get certain things done, and how best to follow through… this is a process you’ve created serves you and can help your co-workers, your team, your company, and possibly the world! I recently spoke with a gentleman that now helps companies around the world with developing processes and strategies as his business and he said, “When I was an employee, I didn’t know what I knew until I said it aloud and wrote it down”.
I was very similar… when I was a Mental Health Therapist it was seemingly easy for me to come up with Group Therapy ideas, concepts to discuss and utilize, ways to communicate with others, and I struggled to understand why it wasn’t as easy for others. In positions of leadership, I found it easy and fun to determine a vision and the steps necessary to achieve it… I got better over the years sharing the vision, explaining it, and getting necessary buy-in. Now, as a business owner and Leadership Trainer my job is to know what I know and break it down into common-sense, easy-to-apply, digestible concepts to allow for a professional and personal evolution… and you can too! So, how do you do a Leader’s K.N.O.W. and develop your process to be of impact?
K. – KNOW What You Know!
This part is most difficult because sometimes, we truly are unaware of what we know and that others don’t. For example, my youngest son plays quarterback and has played the position seemingly since birth. It’s been 7 years, how many practices, games, and private coaching… I’m proud to say, he’s very good at what he does. One week he was unable to practice, his backup was hurt, and the third-string quarterback saddled up. It’s the same position, they are the same age, the same plays, with the same coach… but the results were quite different. My son began to share with his teammate his process of how he prepares, the smallest of details of footwork, hips, shoulder positioning, and all that goes into to throwing. He had no idea how much he knew… until he had to show someone and say it aloud.
My questions for you are… At your job, what are you great at? How do you do it? Imagine you’re getting promoted, but the only way you can accept the position is to train your replacement. Say aloud what they need to know, who they need to know, what they need to do, and how to do it. You may be surprised by the depth of your knowledge and plan. In my Mental Health days, I prepared for sessions beforehand (no winging it!), wrote my notes on topics to cover with certain talking points and questions in mind, made the beginning of the session about the client, allowed the session to veer as needed, ended with a goal, and took notes so each session could build off of each other. In my last stop as an employee, I worked in sales and treated every day like “Game Day”! I welcomed new customers in, gained an understanding of what they wanted to get out of the experience, married what they wanted with what I knew they needed, took notes, and designated a time to reach back to all of my customers or potential customers from my notebook to say hello, stay connected, share new products, or to thank them… amazing things happen when you realize you’re not selling a product… you’re selling YOU! These are things I didn’t know I knew, was able to share with interested co-workers, model for uninterested co-workers, and now teach around the world… and so can you!
N. – Number Your Steps!
This step is short, simple, and sweet. Once you KNOW what you know, say it aloud, and write it down… put them into steps and number them. Now you have an official process that can be easily understood and replicated! Think of the articles or videos that catch your eye, but furthermore entice you to read or listen further because of the number and the lowness of the number… 4 Easy Steps to… 5 Ways to… 3 Simple Ways to… You get the point! Be sure to number your steps, keep that number low, be clear and concise in your directions, and use language anyone learning your process can understand.
O. – Obsessive!
The word obsessive used to make me cringe; as if it was a defect or something to cure. Until we understand that everyone that’s great at something, tends to be obsessive about it! Michael Jordan was obsessive about basketball and winning. I love all music and Hip-Hop is my favorite, Lil-Wayne is obsessive about creating. I’m obsessive about my craft of Leadership & Work/Life Harmony. When my sons were younger I used to say, “It’s going to be hard to be great at your sport laying in bed playing Fortnite all day… get up!”. If being a professional gamer was their vision… then play away and perfect your process!
The point is, obsession is a virtue… as long as your obsession includes these three intangibles:
- Diligence – Develop your process, know your process, and obsess over your diligence toward your process! Consistency will take you farther than motivation!
- Production – At the end of the day… leadership, success, and your K.N.O.W. comes down to production! Does your process produce desired results or beyond? Become obsessed with that and watch how many doors open for you!
- Evolution – Professionally, most processes will need to evolve to survive and thrive through times of organizational, life, and personnel change. As a leader, be willing to evolve your K.N.O.W. and your process as necessary! Remember, evolution may also include YOU and your people evolving their work/life harmony. It would be a shame to have a process, share it, and help the organization and team… only to be miserable pulling up to your home or personal life. Self-Care is not a luxury, it’s a necessity… be Mindful!
W. – Winning Culture!
Does your K.N.O.W. make your organization better? Your peers better? Your boss better? The culture of your organization and team better? These are simple, yet important questions to answer…as some people’s K.N.O.W. are simply short-cuts that short-change the organization and their professional aspirations. So, how do you know if your K.N.O.W. is the bad kind? It only serves YOU; as you get tasks done faster, short-cutting things, and experience a lack of professional growth, development, and opportunities.
I often share with organizations and leaders the importance of getting their “New & Unknown” Employees around their “Inspired & Motivated” Employees as quick as humanly possible for two reasons. One, people and new employees tend to stay with the group of people they initially meet. If that’s the “Inspired & Motivated”, great! If that’s the “Grouches” and “Short-Cutters”, not so good! Two, new employees like to do what they were initially trained to do… they learn, they do, and habits are formed. It’s really difficult to break that habit after you’ve neglected them due to your “Busy” and now intend to address it months later or in their Annual Review… That’s not leadership!
Be sure your K.N.O.W. works to create winning concepts professionally for you, your team, the company, and also…. your customer and client base! Know your K.N.O.W., enjoy your K.N.O.W., share your K.N.O.W., and who knows… maybe one day YOUR business will revolve around your K.N.O.W.!
“Develop your process, know your process, and obsess over your diligence toward your process! Consistency will take you farther than motivation!”
– Andre Young
Written by: Andre Young
Click www.youevolvingnow.com to find out more about Andre Young’s Leadership & Work/Life Harmony Trainings, Speaking Engagements, Books, and more; evolving your organization, your leaders, employees, and teams!