Stories of excellent organizations and the practices behind their success.

What is it about?

Accelerate Your Performance focuses on tactical actions to improve workplace culture. These tactics align to our Nine Principles® for Organizational Excellence.

EP37: Do People Really Want Feedback?

There’s a fine line between giving feedback for improvements and leaving an employee feeling criticized and deflated. Few of us respond well to someone telling us what to do or how to fix ourselves. Yet when feedback is provided in the right way, individuals are motivated to learn and improve. To create excellent organizations providing others with feedback is necessary. Reshape your feedback conversations to focus on achieving a positive outcome.

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EP36: Retain New Hires with 30- & 90-Day Conversations

Making intentional connections with employees is especially important when the employee is within the first 30 and 90 days. Research shows that up to 22% of turnover takes place within an employee’s first 45 days of employment. 30-day conversations reinforce that leaders are committed to retaining the new employee and provide leaders with a fresh perception of the organization. This week Dr. Pilcher dives into what a 30-day conversation is and then provides a real-life example with Studer [...]

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EP35: Pursue Performance Excellence

Why is a commitment to excellence important as a leader and as an organization? Dr. Janet Pilcher interviews Harry S. Hertz Leadership Award recipient, Dr. JoAnn Sternke, to get her perspective on what it takes to pursue performance excellence. As a superintendent of Pewaukee School District, JoAnn led the organization to receive a Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. In this episode, she reveals the key to seeing results and getting the entire group of leaders moving forward.

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EP32: Turn Ideas into Action

Are you really listening to your employees? Many employees don’t think so, in fact, more than half of employees say their company fails to act on good ideas, and a third of employees feel their ideas are ignored. Why? Because leaders demand action without input, receive feedback and avoid making changes, and lack a clear process for managing ideas. It’s crucial for leaders to let employees speak and pay ridiculous attention to what they are saying so teams are motivated to collaborate [...]

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EP31: What Questions Should I Be Asking My Employees?

One of a leader’s greatest responsibilities is to ensure teams are engaged and productive. People are motivated to increase productivity when leaders take time to get to know them personally, make them feel comfortable, and help remove barriers in the workplace. When we connect with employees in ways that are meaningful to them, they become more engaged, productivity and profits increase, meanwhile, turnover, absenteeism, and shrinkage decrease.

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EP29: Keep Those Emotions in Check

Receiving feedback is an emotional experience, it’s often difficult to take in. Whether the feedback is positive or negative, we humans are quick to respond emotionally, sometimes overreacting, even to the point of denying the data is accurate. Feedback is also a powerful gift, it helps organizations understand what they are doing well, and areas in which they’re falling short. In this episode, Dr. Pilcher coaches us to work through useful feedback to honor the information that is helpful, [...]

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EP26: Service Recovery That Knocks It Out of the Park

Despite best efforts, sometimes we fail at providing the outstanding service our customers deserve. During these times, a service recovery process can turn a negative customer experience into an opportunity to satisfy the individual and for the organization to improve. Using a real-life example, Dr. Pilcher identifies six actions to sincere service recovery your customers will thank you for.

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EP25: Addressing Poor Performance

Why do leaders need to address toxic behavior immediately? Because negative behavior drags the entire organization down. 66% of employees who deal with a toxic team member said their performance declined in a recent HBR Study. In this episode, we reveal an approach you can use to support low-solid performers, the 8 types of toxic employees, and 4 steps to dealing with toxic employees.

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EP24: The Best Chance for Success

It’s the leader’s responsibility to provide a structure within the organization to help people know when they’re not performing at their best. When the right system is in place, leaders can support their employees in owning their own performance. Sometimes that support may appear in the form of transitioning someone to a different role or out of the organization. In this episode, we address actions leaders can take to provide every opportunity for employees to be successful.

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EP23: Hitting the Wall

How do the varying human performance levels affect the overall organizational results? What happens when leaders avoid managing employee performance levels? We achieve higher performance with less variation when we tighten the performance curve. In this episode, Dr. Pilcher addresses how leaders have an important role in managing performance to keep results moving in a positive direction.

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EP22: Connecting with Solid Performers

60 – 70% of individuals in our organizations are solid performers, making them the backbone of every organization. When we give them our best, they will give their best to us and our organizations. This week, Dr. Pilcher discusses how to connect with your solid performers. When you give solid performers feedback the right way, a relationship is built that will retain, motivate, and inspire your direct reports.

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EP14: Small Things, Big Difference

Through kindness we have a greater opportunity to achieve higher results. Individuals who combine their skills with kindness and drive can’t be stopped. Studies even show leaders who project warmth are more effective than leaders that lead with toughness. This week, Dr. Pilcher provides you with 8 quick actions you can do immediately to accelerate kindness. Practicing kindness is one small thing, that has really big results.

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EP13: That’s the Way It Is

Can you recall a time when you’ve been frustrated with another department in your organization, and you were told nothing can be done to solve the problem? Are leaders fighting about who is supposed to be responsible for something and blaming others when things don’t get done? The best solutions come from the people doing the work day in and day out. This episode focuses on breaking down barriers to improve workplaces. Learn how can you utilize your people to improve processes and systems [...]

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EP12: Execute Well for Better Results

This week, Dr. Pilcher discusses the common job we all come to work to do each day: Execute Well. Do we take quick decisive, meaningful actions every day? Or do we find ourselves waiting for our next assignment, redoing our work, or missing deadlines? Executing well plays a critical role in moving organizations forward and exceeding results. Dr. Pilcher recommends four actions for executing well in this week’s show.

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EP11: Leaders Don’t Whine

How can you avoid the trap of negative thinking? Overcoming obstacles is never easy, but when we don’t let shortcomings get (and keep) us down, we become more resilient. This week, Dr. Pilcher exposes how to eliminate this behavior from the workplace.

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EP9: Stop the Subconscious Behavior Infecting Your Organization

‘It’s not me, it’s them!’ – We’ve all heard it before, the blame game. But seriously, if they could just get their work done, I wouldn’t have to bring it up right? This default communication has lasting negative effects on team performance and results. Dr. Pilcher advises how to eliminate we/they behavior in the organization, and your life, for good. The results can be dramatic, imagine a positive culture where people take ownership.

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EP8: What if Your Boss is the Problem?

56% of American workers claim their boss is mildly or highly toxic. We all deserve to work for high performing leaders, but what can you do if this isn’t your experience at work? Do you grin and bear it? Quit? Confront the boss? To continue the discussion from episode 7 on poor work behavior, this week Dr. Pilcher addresses low performing leaders, from the employee’s perspective.

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EP7: Handling Executive Leader Sabotage

How do you handle leaders who say they’re on board, but act like they’re not? Leadership team alignment is vital for high performing organizations to be successful. This week, Dr. Pilcher discusses how to address leaders who choose to deviate from strategy. Leaders who exhibit negative behaviors are noticeable by all employees and as a result are actively eroding the company culture.

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EP6: Can You Fix My Culture?

You’re probably familiar with the saying, “Culture eats strategy for breakfast,” but how is it that organizations cultivate a positive, inspired culture? And possibly more difficult, how can leaders turn a negative culture around? Dr. Pilcher explains the steps necessary to begin shifting the culture in the right direction. Our people determine our culture, it lives and evolves inside of us every day.

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EP5: Reignite Your Passion

All of us are energized by something. It’s up to us to dig deeper within ourselves to stay connected to our passions as we live through new experiences. Dr. Pilcher returns to her tennis days from episode 4 Losing Our Way to show how she worked through her temporary loss of passion. She addresses the role leaders play to support team member’s passions.

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EP4: Losing Our Way

Anyone can fall victim of losing their passion at some point or another. Results from Gallup’s State of the American Workforce reveal disengagement at work happens to over 50% of employees. Yet organizations with higher employee engagement perform at higher levels, so what can leaders do to keep teams engaged. Dr. Pilcher refers to her days as a tennis enthusiast to demonstrate the struggle to maintain passion and how to help each other from losing our way.

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EP3: What are the Nine Principles? Part 3

This episode is the final part of a three-part series. It introduces and gives a brief overview of Principles 7-9 of the Nine Principles®. These Principles are: 7) Align Behaviors with Goals and Values, 8) Communicate at All Levels, 9) Recognize and Reward Success.

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