How Team Leaders Can Identify and Transform Toxic Team Cultures

Young woman looks upset as her co-workers talk behind her back in the corner of the office in a toxic work culture.

How can leaders identify and transform toxic team cultures? Toxic work environments are not that uncommon. As a member of many teams as an athlete, a coach, and now an entrepreneur, I can attest that sometimes we find ourselves in work environments that are not positive, communicative, collaborative, or healthy.

I have talked to many athletes of all sports and both genders, business people, top leaders, assistants, educators, medical professionals, and many more who have had to endure a toxic workplace.  

What is a toxic work environment? 

Why Leaders Must Genuinely Care About the Mental Wellness of Their Teams

A group of diverse employees sitting with the boss and laughing at a meeting

This past year, I traveled more than any year since COVID hit. It feels good to connect physically with people again, and not rely solely on virtual meetings. My travel has catapulted me around the country, including internationally, and it has afforded me the opportunity to meet many different people from different companies and to ask questions about mental health and teams. 

For years, I have been doing an unofficial research project. I ask people, “How is work going for you?” I heard from people at all levels of organizations, from first-year employees to C-Suite executives.

Mentorship vs Sponsorship: How the Difference Impacts Organizational Advancement Between Genders

Two co-workers working together on a laptop computer

What is the difference between mentorship and sponsorship, and why is it important for all levels of leadership to understand how it impacts organizational advancement between genders?(1) The answer lies in the fact that a large percentage of women are not reaching the C-Suite in their organizations.  While both mentorship and sponsorship are important for employee advancement, studies show [Center for Talent Innovation study – 2019 and Felix – 2014] sponsorship is more effective in the employee ascending beyond the glass ceiling.

My Longtime Friend and Coworker Just Got Laid Off! Now What?

Asian man with his office packed in a box, sitting on the floor in front of his desk after being laid off

What happens when a longtime friend and coworker unexpectedly gets laid off? You are hit with a wave of emotions. What comes next? Are you on the chopping block as well? How should you handle your coworker? The situation? The organization?

Whether you are weeks into a job or have been loyal to the same company for years, friendships with co-workers develop at work. Relationships build as you co-exist within teams and across departments within your organization. You share stories, cross-reference issues, collectively come up with solutions to help each other, work similar hours, and experience the job with other people. You become friends in many cases.

Balance or Blend? How to Create a True Work-Life Powerful Relationship

Woman wearing headphones and sun glasses outside on the rocks working on her laptop in a work life balance

Balancing or blending? How do you create a work-life relationship? Holidays may not be the best time to check in with work-life balance, but then again, maybe they are the perfect time. Holidays stretch our balancing act more than most other times during the year. Gifting, gathering, hosting, wrapping, snacking, baking, cooking, shopping, traveling, and church going fill up the calendar leaving little time for work. And yet, work still must be done. 

The holidays end and you are so exhausted that you need another holiday, or at least a couple days off just to recoup. You have fallen behind at work and the boss has asked about some upcoming deadlines. 

Increase Productivity, Inclusivity, and Bottom Lines By Hiring Disabled Employees

Diverse group of employees at a meeting led by a disabled man in a wheelchair

With job openings up, recruiting and hiring qualified individuals with the “right fit” has become more challenging.  If you’re looking for solutions to your hiring needs, consider the great value disabled employees bring. 

According to the August 30, 2022, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are 11.2 million job openings nationwide.  This number is up since the COVID pandemic first hit in 2021.  We see “now hiring” signs popping up everywhere.  With so many job openings, job seekers can be more selective and demanding. 

Simple Tips for Managing Conflict on Teams

Two office employees high-fiving while working through conflict successfully

No team, whether workplace, sports, family, or community, is void of conflict. Life is full of differing ideas, values, beliefs, and emotions. And there are countless ways to handle conflict. As we mature in life and obtain more experience with conflict, we learn different ways to handle it. Hence, managing conflict on teams is one of the hats all leaders share. Why do leaders need tips for managing conflict on teams?

Strategies For Preserving Middle Ground On Teams

Two teams of wooden figures standing on either side of an argument

When it comes to optimal team performance, strategies for preserving a safe space for discourse (i.e. “the middle ground”) is imperative. Teams who achieve great outcomes rely heavily on the middle ground conversations where ideas are shared and different opinions are welcomed. If teams have no safe space, there is no genuine growth or development in the organization or its employees.

In the last few years, there has been an increase in anger, unrest, and violence around the globe. Everyday, when you turn on the news, there is not much positive out there.

The Value of Investing in Great Assistants

I can’t help but refer to Barb Smith, founder at Courtside Leadership and Find My Team, endearingly as Coach Smith. When she contacted me about contributing a blog discussing the value of investing in great assistants, I considered my own career trajectory from beginning as a marketing assistant to my current role.

After reading and researching numerous articles, blogs and research studies, my consensus—it doesn’t matter, court, field, track, rink, boardroom, home office or other—good managers, manage and great managers and leaders delegate to a great assistant.  What does this mean?  Simply, great managers and leaders understand and utilize the support a great assistant provides.  Although the tasks may vary by industry, the role of an assistant remains vital within each.

Employing, Empowering, Inspiring, and Retaining Generation Z: The Challenges

Gen Zers holding up messages over their heads

Every generation is molded by the experiences, events and technologies unfolding during that era. Therefore it makes sense that every generation reflects its own unique set of core values and beliefs. The same holds true in the workplace. What worked to motivate and manage one generation at work or in their place of business may not necessarily work to motivate and manage the next generation. 

Top leaders are at risk of losing Gen Z in the workplace if they fail to understand and embrace the fact that this generation has a completely new and unique set of core values and beliefs and are motivated by different needs than earlier generations.

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