The next Calgary APLN Chapter meeting is on April 10th and will feature Ross Martin and Lynn Harrison from Black Tusk Leadership speaking on: "Team Motivation: Working Inside the Egg". See www.CalgaryAPLN.org for a full description and registration details. This promises to be an interactive and entertaining talk that emphasises the importance of listening and motivation within teams.
I first met Ross when I attended a "Leadership Challenge" workshop last year. Ross was an invited panel presenter and he impressed me with his knowledge and humble demeanour. I met up with Ross for lunch shortly afterwards to ask him some leadership questions and we got talking about his job as an executive coach and leadership consultant.
Ross explained that he spends a good portion of his time coaching company executives in leadership techniques and providing feedback. As we talked I could not help thinking that this sounded like nice work if you could get it, but a little soft, "foo-foo" and fuzzy, so I asked some more questions. Ross said that the best way to understand what coaching involved was to experience it and offered to give me a 10 minute session there in the restaurant. So that's what we did, and boy, it explained it well.
Ross asked me what my biggest work concerns were and I explained rather than any particular project, I was thinking hardest about what I would like to do with my career. Ross then asked, for this biggest concern, what had I done to try and solve it, and how much of my working week was I dedicating to it. I was embarrassed to admit that while I claimed it was the most important thing, I was doing a pretty lousy job of addressing it. We reviewed each of my options and work done investigating them so far and, in a very nice way, Ross was able to get me to realize that there was a lot more I could do and helped outline a roadmap.
From this and other discussions, I went from being an entertained sceptic to an enthralled convert faster than I can remember. The cynic in me may have thought that this must have been a one-off trick or "Vulcan-mind-meld", but I really think that a leadership coach who knows their stuff can be of tremendous help.
So, get along to APLN the talk if you can, Ross and Lynn have great insights to share and their topic: "team motivation" is an important subject area for all of us.