Helping Leaders Achieve Sustainability

Shutterstock

You might think this is a blog about the human anatomy and that I am about to go into the intricacies of the use and benefits of the tongue as a muscular organ. Well; this blog is about the metaphor – the tongue….as a symbol of what comes out of our mouths and how this in itself is an act of leadership.

I have chosen to write about this as a way of making sense of a recent experience where I was facilitating a board strategy session for a public entity. It is a note to self (not to dish out what I experienced in that session); a healing point (letting it all out; journalling and meditating helps with healing) and a teaching point (to raise awareness to those in power and authority to be conscious of the impact on others).

I will not bore you with the details; suffice to say that in my twelve years of running a consulting business and being an experienced facilitator of strategy sessions; I have never experienced anything like that. The level of personal attack; (of course accompanied by this is not personal) and lack of professionalism in raising concerns (might have been justified I don’t know – history will judge) was a first for me. How I kept my cool and remained highly emotionally intelligent is worth an Oscar award. This was a real case of pull her down ( PHD) syndrome.

This left me thinking on how can I turn this experience around into something positive and hence I am writing this blog. I want to share a couple of point for leaders to take on board as they show up in a professional setting and they use their position to articulate their views. I will discuss these below:

  1. Be conscious of your impact – Prof Daniel Goleman writes extensively about these matters in his Emotional Intelligence Model i.e. Self awareness; self management; social awareness and relationship management. The essence of this is that you need to be fully aware of your internal feelings and triggers and consistently seeks to manage how you act on these in a manner that builds and nurtures relationships.
  2. Be the change you would like to see in the world… I am a firm believer that “leadership is an inside job”. The most effective leaders today are inclusive; self aware; seeks to serve and lead by example. As leaders we need to build a culture of respect and trust and we will not be able to get the results we want if we lead from positional power as opposed to being inclusive and act as change agents.
  3. Leave a positive impression – We live in a world where everything is connected and every time you step out or open your mouth to others ask yourself the question – am I making friends or possible allies into the future OR am I creating future enemies. In a networked world you will never know when and how your paths will cross again so make it your business that you pay forward; you create future friends and allies and you are building your own legacy as a leader.

Another way that I intended to turn this situation into a positive will be to run a workshop in the month of May on Emotional Intelligence. It will be a one day workshop online called “How do I show up as a leader today – being emotionally intelligent” We will be opening doors to this workshop very soon please send any enquiry to info@zenandeleadership.com or follow us on social media so that you get front row seats.

In closing I am reminded of one of Dr Maya Angelou’s quote “People will forget what you said; people will forget what you did; but people will never forget how you made them feel”

Lovingly

Pamthecoach

Inspiring Sisters

KCherellDesigns

Last Friday I felt so proud and so inspired as I attended the Local Government Women Leadership Development Graduation ceremony. This is a SALGA programme that was implemented by UCT’s Nelson Mandela school and Zenande Leadership Consulting (the 100% women owned and managed company I have had the honour and privilege of leading for the last 12 years).

This was a graduation ceremony worth a special mention as the women on the program showed incredible determination and resilience. This program was conceptualised before we were hit by the devastating pandemic and everything had to be adapted and offered online. These women braved a lot and remained focused and resolute and showed all of us what they are made of.

It made me to appreciate what Cheryl Hale says “Brave women are not born from comfort zones….they are made in the fire”. I invite you to listen to Lira’s song “Something inside so strong” as I firmly believe it fully captures the essence of what these women achieved during a pandemic.

The program set to empower women to be better leaders in the municipal space and I feel it achieved the intended objectives and more. It ushered an incredible amount of “sisterhood”. We watched with admiration how the women supported one another so effortlessly and with a great sense of love and selfless giving; all in service of a greater good.

What inspired me the most is how each of the women showed up and got themselves out of their comfort zones. They embraced their discomfort; brought their A game and showed the world how is it done. They showed us how to balance hard work and sheer enjoyment; how to apply abstract theoretical constructs to day to day practical services delivery challenges. More importantly how to be intentional; live your purpose and be passionate in what you do.

I could easily run out of superlatives as I express how proud and inspired I was by these women. At the same time I could easily be auditioning to be the resident imbongi (praise singer) for sheer excellence and class and to be honest I am quite pleased to be doing this as queens need to be consistently fixing each other’s crowns.

As I say “halala” to the LGWLDP class of 2022 I feel privileged and honoured for being part of the conceptualisation and delivery of the program. I; without hesitation; would like to accord each and everyone of the participants of this programme the esteemed title of being true “Imbokodos”

Malibongwe!!!!!!!

Pam the Coach

Queen…ness

I am not even sure this word queen-ness exists in the English dictionary and if it doesn’t, I apologize to the linguists. I however would like to spend some time and discuss what does this mean and maybe those that are responsible for putting words in the dictionary will stop and listen.

As we approach International Women’s Day, I stopped and reflected on the journey towards women’s emancipation. It’s a lifelong struggle however we are beginning to see the fruits of our labour. More and more women are being appointed onto positions of authority and put differently, are taking up in leadership roles in organizations and society in general.

I am exceptionally pleased about this phenomenon as numbers matter. I also hasten to say a lot more needs to happen to bring more women to the table and also allow them to genuinely lead from the heart. We need more compassion and kindness in the world today and I am happy to say that women leaders bring that and more to the table.

In this short note I want to discuss what does “Queen-ness” mean and how can we embrace the notion of being a queen. To borrow from the OneOfMany characterisation “a queen leads through vision and inspiration and leads through grace and dignity”. (Www.OneOfMany.uk)

As we move towards the 8th of March which is International Women’s Day, how do you feel about your “Queen…ness”? How do you wear your crown? What vision do you hold for other women? How do you lead with grace and dignity?

I will be hosting a 2 hour event on this day where we celebrate women and also rededicate ourselves to the cause. The session will run from 12-2pm on the 8th of March and it is a virtual; lunch hour gig. Please join us as we would love to hear your voice and insights.

If you are interested please click on the link below and register…. P.S. limited seats available so sign up and join us.

https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZApcuyopzwrE9C0Zd39sTahtpr8SsSdH28V

Pam the Coach

New Year Blues

I always find this time of the year incredibly interesting as everyone is on high alert to be better than the previous year. People make New Year resolutions and strive to make the new year a better year than previously.
I am a firm believer that as people set their new year resolutions they genuinely believe in what they are doing and more often than not they seriously think that nothing is insurmountable and the world is yet to see the best version of themselves. Why not do it at the beginning of year; as the world ushers in a new period and there is a unique opportunity to start on a high note.
It is often within a month that we start to see the old behaviours creeping back into the fold…we see less and less gym visits; less salad bowls at the dinner table; less water bottles being carried around etc.
I often wonder what drives this behaviour; is it the month after syndrome; is it busier work schedules or is it demanding family lives. Or is it the advent of what I call New Year Blues?
How does one beat this? Or put differently how does one sustain this through the year and find new ways of being. I would like to offer some ideas:

  1. Know your why?


Simon Sinek has done extraordinary work on this subject. He implores us to do things on purpose and be clear on why we do certain things. He firmly indicates that people don’t buy what you offer but why you do what you do. I guess this forces us to dig deep and do things from a point of authenticity and essence. So; the next time you go to the gym ask yourself WHY?

  1. Act in congruence with your values

Dr. John DeMartini reckons that we prioritise and give energy to those things that matter the most to us. Values are fundamental beliefs and inform our world view. He argues that the higher the value in terms of your personal orientation then there more attention you will give it and you will tend to be more disciplined in how you approach it.
He further argues that the more your values inform your actions or what you pay attention to; then the closer you are to being a genius.
So; there is a better chance of keeping your new year resolutions if they are in congruence with your values.

  1. Find an accountability partner

Have you realized that if your are going somewhere with someone you often honour that appointment more than if you were going alone. This is partly due to the fact that we are social beings and we are on a quest of belonging and therefore we don’t want to disappoint those we hold dearly.
You stand a better chance of succeeding it you enlist the services of a coach; mentor or a friend who will hold you accountable to your commitments to yourself.
In conclusion

Setting your intentions and goals for a new year is a good thing. How you do it and how you measure success is something else hence I have developed an online 4×90 minutes per week programme called 2022 & Beyond Intentions program which has been uniquely designed with the issues raised in this blog and more. Should you require more information please do not hesitate to contact us at info@zenandeleadership.com or call 012 998. 7337 to book your seat.
P.s Hurry up as the seats are filling up quickly and we start on the 1st of February 2022.

At the end of 2021 I ran a poll on my Pamthecoach group on Facebook on what the main nemesis facing the women in the group was. The outcome of the poll was that the biggest challenge was Procrastination. As a way of being of service to the women in the group and other sisters who might come across this blog I thought I should focus on this topic. p.s if you are interested to join the group please go to Facebook and look for theprivate group and request to join (pamthecoach group on Facebook).
 
“Procrastination is the action of unnecessarily and voluntarily delaying or postponing something despite knowing that there will be negative consequences for doing so”. Wikipedia, 2022. Another way to look at it is how best do we use the time we have at our disposal.
 
We all have the same amount of hours or time available to us regardless of our background and social status. The difference is how we use it….are you using it to your benefit. How we use our time is a question of choice. I suppose this is easier said than done because we tend to procrastinate on the most important things and sometimes without even realising it.
 
There are numerous reasons why people procrastinate and these include fear of failure, self-doubt, lack of self confidence, lack of clarity, laziness and lack of alignment with who we are and how we do things.
 
As part of your procrastination-busting journey I would like to suggest that you ask yourself a few reflective questions?
 
Do I even recognise how and where procrastination shows up in my life? Career, relationships, health, finances, etc.
What is the main reason I procrastinate? Fear of failure, lack of confidence, lack of clarity, laziness, tasks not aligned with my values.
How is this behavior assisting or moving me away from my dreams and intentions?
Can I solve the challenges on my own or with the assistance of someone like a mentor or a coach?
 
These questions can be useful to get you started on your own procrastination-busting journey and it might be useful to answer them for yourself or get in touch to see how can I help in unblocking the challenge.
 
I will be discussing this topic further in the following blogs including suggesting what tips you can employ to overcome procrastination.
 
Pamthecoach
 

The Value Of The Tribe

Everybody needs their personal Board of Directors”  Ipupa Kasheeta a fellow coach and mentor post this quote on Facebook the other day.  It got me thinking on what does she mean?  I decided to just read the comments on her post and that got me to reflect deeply.   I then thought let me take some of the comments and try and understand the meaning the ascribe to the quote and I found that interesting and there we go a blog was born.  This blog is about taking the quote and try and make sense and give my own input and reflections.   This is a different approach to my normal blog….let try and see how this lands.

Comment 1

To help them reach their greatest potential in all aspects”

This one made me think of the African proverb…..”if you want to go fast, go alone.   If you want to go far, go together.

We often underestimate the power of working with others.   We live in a society where personal goals and ambitions are often held above those of the collective.   Depending on your world view this is correct however I do want you to pause and think if there is also the need to get an input from others.  This is necessary to give you a different perspective to what you are about, it also helps you when you can’t see the wood for the trees as you are well invested in the outcome.   Don’t get me wrong there is a need for clarity and action at an individual level however at times it helps to pause and get input and draw from the wisdom of others.   This does not make you less of a person on the contrary it builds and nourishes your perspective to be more well-rounded and richer so that you can reach your destination being much more nourished.

Comment 2

Indeed, a sounding board”

Who does not need someone they can call on to give advice, give alternative views based on their own perspective?   We all need “trusted advisors” i.e., these are credible and reliable people who have your interest at heart and who do not take over your life but seek to nudge you in the right direction especially when you are too emotionally involved in the situation.   They do not bring their personal interest into the situation, and they are also not judging you in your journey and decisions.   They have your back and the same time will not lead you astray.  Their advice is based on the best information at their disposal and they bring an incredible amount of wisdom as they might have been there before or they have the tools to assist you make the right choices and decisions for yourself.   Mentors, consultants, coachees, confidantes come to mind in this situation.

Comment 3

An influential individual who endorses you and your skills to powerful people in important conversations.   Someone who can introduce you to others in your profession or community”

This makes me think of a sponsor and that is someone who is vested in your success.     Who speaks well of you in your absence.   Who mentions your name when there are opportunities being discussed and goes around letting the right people to know about you, your skills, and capabilities when you are not there.   This person is a champion of your success because they believe in you and are willing to open pathways for you.   This relationship is often based on having worked with you or even having seen you apply your trade in an impressive manner.  This person is critical as you aspire for upward mobility in an organisation.

Impactful leaders understand that they cannot do it alone and they need a tribe especially in modern day organisations where everyone not just the boss is expected to lead.   We need to find our tribe of fellow employees, colleagues, coachees, mentors, confidants so that we can connect with them at a deeper level to reach our destination together.   In an increasingly volatile and complex world we all need to the wisdom of others. 

 So, my invitation to you is….. Who is in your tribe?

Pam the Coach

Celebrating our Heritage

“Heritage is a person’s unique; inherited sense of family identity; the values; traditions; culture and artifacts handed down by previous generations” – Sunny Morton

September month in South Africa is designated as heritage month. It is a time when we, as a nation pause and reflect on who we are as a people. We dress in our best cultural outfits; we celebrate and dance to our music; we get free access to our National Parks and other Nature Reserves and we indulge in our best cuisine whilst proudly sipping our South African wines. These are symbols and practices that represent our pride as a people and we do this in style and vigor.

With this blog I would like to affirm and acknowledge what is working so well whilst issuing an invitation for us to go a little deeper in our personal space. I suggest we do this by asking ourselves a few questions. These are:

  • Who am I? I find this question very challenging as it forces me to face the mirror and answer it a deeper level. I often use the following markers…. what are my values? What do I stand for? What do I represent? How I would like to be remembered for?
  • Who am I in relation to others? We are social beings and we have an innate longing to belong. Whilst that is the case do we ever sit and ponder how our current relationships ( Professional; Business and Personal) serve us or disempower us? What boundaries do we set; if any? How do I help others to become more?
  • What is my offering? We are all talented and gifted in many ways…. dancers; singers; connectors; trainers; teachers; nurturers; visionaries etc. Do we know what our gifts are and more importantly how do we share them with the world and how do we live our dreams and passions. The Wayne Dwyer’s quote that says…”Don’t die with your music still in you”; scares me as I often wonder if my life is worth anything or I am just consuming oxygen.

As we celebrate our heritage this month I would like to invite you to sit down and reflect.

We have a number of programs that are geared to help you in your journey please reach out to us on info@zenandeleadership.com or visit our website www.zenandeleadership.com or call at 012 998. 7337 we are more than willing to help.

Happy Heritage month

Pam the coach

“If serving is below you; leadership is beyond you” – Micheal Hyatt

I find this quote to be hitting right to my core. As someone who is passionate about working with leaders especially women; I find myself pondering the question….how do I continually serve in my space?

Serving is a spiritual act; it’s a higher level of being; it’s a calling and requires the most of you. It requires all of you and it requires a level of dedication that might sometimes feel unfair and dare I say draining.

“Servant leadership is a leadership philosophy in which the goal is to serve. The leader shares power; puts the employees first and helps people develop and perform as highly as possible” – Robert K Greenleaf.

There are a few questions that we need to ask ourselves as a leader in service…

  1. Do those served grow as people?

In other words be in touch with the needs and aspirations of those you serve so that you can meaningful contribute to their growth and success in a way that authentically serves them.

  1. Do you help them to become autonomous?

When you are serving you are like a vessel and a channel for greatness. Your job is to spark and nurture the greatness that exists in others by helping them to find their essence and bloom so that they light up the world and in turn serve humanity.

  1. Do you have a serving mindset?

“Mindset is a set of beliefs that shape how you make sense of the world and yourself. It influences how you think; feel and behave in any given situation”- Kendra Chery.

We need to be intentional in our efforts to serve?… We also need to be clear on what success looks like for ourselves.

I am hosting a Mastermind Group for Women in the Public Service. The aim is to; amongst others; navigate these difficult questions and help each participant to find their own style of serving amidst the pressures and difficulties they face today. The group will bring together women who are seeking serving the public to explore the questions as they come into their own and find their essence.

If you are interested and want to be part of this exciting journey please don’t hesitate to drop us an email at info@zenandeleadership.com

The time to serve is now. It is our calling and it is our heritage.

Happy Heritage Month

Pam the coach

On the 30th of August I had the privilege and honour to host a “Women Leading Conservation” Webinar. It is women’s month and it has become customary to hold these events as a contribution to the broader struggle for women’s emancipation.

I have hosted a number of these before; however this one shook me to the core. Yes I was excited to be in the company of amazing women but there was something extraordinary about this event. Upon reflection I think it was the content of the inputs given by the speakers of the day; especially Ms Saray Khumalo.

When Saray summited Mount Everest I wrote a blog in her honour. I had never met her but somehow her success moved me and I celebrated it as if it was mine. I finally got to host her and listen to her journey as she narrated what it took to get to the top of the world. She narrates the story in the most powerful; riveting and artful form that makes the listener feel that she was there too. She takes you through the ebbs and the flows whilst delivering the most precious leadership gems. I once read that there are 7 gemstones and it is befitting that I extract 7 of these from her address. Please note that these have been paraphrased and simplified into my own words based on how I made sense of what was being said.

  1. Clarity on your why – it is very important to be clear on why you do what you do; write it down somewhere or carry it with you as you will need the reference to motivate you when the chips are down.
  2. Have big; audacious goals – if you goals don’t scare you then they are not worth pursuing….go big or go home!!!
  3. Run your own race – yes you need to surround yourself with support and get resources from others but remember you cannot compare yourself to others and oftentimes you don’t know what drives someone else…so stay in your lane.
  4. When you fall; reflect and rise again – this is otherwise known as resilience and it requires you to trust the process and don’t give up on your goals;
  5. Believe in yourself…. put in the required effort and trust that you too can make it. It’s fine life happens and you need to trust yourself especially when self-doubt creeps as it often does;
  6. Enlist support…enrol the services of those who know or who can lend support to you; carry you and help to navigate the unknown territory. Trust that others can be a useful support structure to you… these include coaches; mentors; sponsors etc.
  7. Take steps towards your Summit….this all requires that you take action towards your goals; embrace the obstacles on the way; celebrate the significant milestones on the way. Do this knowing that the ultimate goal is to summit.

At the end of her address I was left speechless to say the least and at best I was rejuvenated and inspired to wake up and follow my dreams. I had not blogged for a while and I had many plausible reasons (read excuses) on why I should not blog and thanks to Saray and all the other sisters who spoke at the event that I have found my groove and I can once again waltz towards my own summit.

With love

Coach Pam

The next chapter

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is the-next-chapter.jpg

“The only difference between where you are and where you want to be is the steps you haven’t taken” – Rigel Dawson

I came across this quote and it gave me the chills, because it cuts through the chase and helped me face my demons.  I don’t know about you; but I have big dreams and ambitions about many aspects of my life especially the future I want to create.  Somehow I often find ways to trip myself and not take the next steps necessary.

I have come to the realization that fear is at the heart of inaction and this coupled with self doubt and lack of self belief is quite debilitating and I think that if one has to take the next chapter it is necessary to stop and ask the fundamental questions.

Fear

Ask yourself the following questions – What am I fearing?  Am a fearing failure; am I fearing success or what exactly is the shape and form of that fear? What is its genesis and what support do I need to let it go or at least manage it.  Remember fear is “False Evidence Appearing Real”

Self belief and doubt

I have known for a very long time that I am the author of the next chapter of my life but I somehow doubt my ability to execute and birth my wildest dreams.  If you are a fellow traveller ask yourself the following questions:

                ⁃              What is the belief?

                ⁃              Where/what is the genesis of this belief?

                ⁃              How is it serving me at the moment?

                ⁃              What could I believe instead?

I am a firm believer that miracles happen when we believe however that starts with putting out an intention and tapping into your inner wisdom; call on your support network to assist you to take that first step.  It does not have to be big steps but they need to be taken, as clarity often happens in action.  In other words take a leap of faith and do it.

Finally call on your higher power and surrender the outcome and know that you have an amazing ability to marshal all of the support you need and more importantly you have what it takes to shape the direction of your life.

Yes I can!!!!!

Coach Pam

Tag Cloud

%d bloggers like this: