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The Modern Manager

Host Mamie Kanfer Stewart shares practical approaches to help you be a great manager. Solo episodes are like mini-courses, providing actionable tips based on experience and research. Guest episodes are engaging conversations that elicit insights and suggestions for how to apply the ideas.Episodes features topics like: effective meeting practices, communication skills, managing conflict, team building, time management, group dynamics, goal setting and accountability, team competencies, productivity and collaboration technologies, organizational culture, and more.

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222: Design a Path to Your Future with Lance Tanaka

Authentic leadership is unique to each of us. It's about understanding and being comfortable with who you are so that you can leverage your strengths. We can then use that information to guide our choices and lift up those around us. When you understand your strengths and values, they can create a personal roadmap to success. Today’s guest is Lance Tanaka. Lance is an Executive Leadership Expert. He and his team elevate leaders and their teams to increase business production, performance and profits. Lance and I talk about lessons from his latest book Dream and Achieve: 90 Days to a life of purpose. We walk through the process that Lance and hundreds of others have used to help clarify their goals and take steps towards their desired future. Members of the Modern Manager community get 25% off Lance’s course, Dream & Achieve. This course has helped thousands of successful executives identify their purpose and move down the path to realizing it. Get this generous discount if you register before September 30, 2022. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Check out the new Modern Manager Skills Accelerator! Read the related blog article: Carve a Path at Work That is Authentically You KEEP UP WITH LANCE Website: lancetanaka360.com Key Takeaways: Focus more time on honing your strengths rather than fixing your weaknesses. The DNA “Dream N’ Achieve” process is a 90 day journey of self discovery and charting a path forward. First, reflect on your strengths and passions. Then look for common themes, ideally no more than 9. Drill into those elements with who/what/where/when/why questions to further clarify what matters most to you. Do this DNA process as a team activity. Others often see our strengths better than we do. Trying to Find your “True North” may slow you down. Instead, create a balance between all your needs by going in the right direction and adjusting over time accordingly. There are three outcomes that result from following your DNA: (1) a big shift to a new company/career/city, (2) a sideways shift to a different team or role in the same company, or (3) minor shifts that lead to a major tipping point down the road. Employees need purpose. When you help them find their DNA, they may leave, but they may also have greater loyalty to a workplace that enables them to shine. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


20 Sep 2022

Rank #1

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221: Reducing and Responding to Microaggressions with Martine Kalaw

Microaggressions are harmful words and actions that stem from biases and stereotypes. They’re subconscious, meaning we may not even realize we’re being offensive or biased. The damage they inflict can be long-lasting and impact how individuals relate to us and the entire company. As managers, it's our responsibility to create a professional work environment that fosters understanding and listening, so all people can feel safe and supported at work. Today’s guest is Martine Kalaw. Martine is an Elevation Strategist - she shifts mindsets, builds bridges & delivers results. She is the author of Illegal Among Us, experienced being an undocumented immigrant, and is a DEI Consultant. Martine and I talk about how to confront, respond to and learn from uncomfortable DEI situations in the workplace. Maybe it’s something you said that landed the wrong way with a team member or maybe it’s something a colleague did that was insensitive or exclusionary. We talk about microaggressions and how to get smarter about your own behavior since so often we don’t even realize we’re creating harm. Members of the Modern Manager community can get a free 60-Minute Masterclass: Advancing DEI. Scheduled for September 22, this 60-minute class will give you the top five keys to advancing DEI in your workplace over the course of 90 days. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: What To Do About Microaggressions In The Workplace KEEP UP WITH MARTINE Website: https://martinekalaw.com/ Facebook: https://m.facebook.com/MartineKalawEnterprisesLLC Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/martinekalaw/?hl=en LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/martinekalawconsulting/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/martinekalaw Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQTb6zI5m4jehE-czyT8SvQ/featured Key Takeaways: Microaggressions are actions or words that are unintentionally offensive, stemming from biases and stereotypes. 40% of people leave their jobs due to microaggressions. Microaggressions come from biases rather than personal encounters. The more diversity on the team, the fewer microaggressions.  Microaggressions are diminished when there’s more than one person from that background on a team. Set aside 10 minutes during 1-on-1 meetings to ask for feedback to learn if you said anything harmful or if the preson has experienced any harm.  When informed of a microaggression, don’t react defensively. You don’t need to agree to be an ally. Listen to understand rather than defending your honor. Engage in solutions together. Consider what could be said/done differently. Ask your employee’s permission to ask follow up questions so it doesn’t feel like an interrogation. If it’s not the right time, address it at a future date. Show vulnerability that you are on this DEI journey and admit your mistakes. Employees will respect you for your growth mindset.  mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


13 Sep 2022

Rank #2

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220: Methods for Robust Brainstorm Sessions

Brainstorming is a method of developing ideas in a group setting. It's used to solve problems, come up with new ideas, and generally explore possibilities. While it may seem like a simple task, there’s often much more than meets the eye when it comes to effective brainstorming. Working through various exercises helps you not only generate ideas but also deeply understand the situation you are looking at.  Today's episode is about brainstorming. Almost every team, at some point, has a brainstorming session. While brainstorming can be as straightforward as “okay, what ideas do you have?” There are also different methods to help you make the most of your brainstorming time together, and that’s what I cover here. The full episode guide includes lists of prompts and suggested approaches for boosting your brainstorming sessions. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community or purchase the full guide at www.themodernmanager.com/shop. Get the free mini-guide at themodernmanager.com/miniguides. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles, and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: 3 Brainstorming Strategies for Every Situation Key Takeaways: Separate the idea generation from idea evaluation in order to facilitate creative thinking. Use the phrase “If I had a magic wand…” to help people avoid censoring their ideas based on what they think is feasible or will be viewed as “good” by their colleagues. Prepare specific prompts ahead of time to help get people thinking more broadly. For example, “How might we use our space differently?” or “What 1-time changes could we make?” or “What global trends might impact us?” Ask people to “wear specific hats” to get them to think from other people’s perspectives. For example, “how would Steve Jobs solve this problem?" Try iterating on a single idea to see if there is a version of that idea that is more feasible or more impactful. Give people time to brainstorm quietly on their own before sharing all ideas out loud.  mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


6 Sep 2022

Rank #3

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219: Motivation Through Core Values with Rob Toomey

Identifying the core values and potential motivators of your team members isn't always the easiest task. There are a lot of factors to consider when it comes to each individual personality, which makes for a delicate interpretation process. But optimizing your relationships with others comes down to understanding one thing: what on earth makes them tick? Today’s guest is Rob Toomey. As President of TypeCoach, Rob lives at the intersection of his two passions: personality type and entrepreneurship. Working with 800 global client organizations, he has delivered live sessions to more than 50,000 participants and the TypeCoach online tools have reached more than 185,000 people. Rob is also Managing Director of The Idea Factory which is focused on early stage app and website projects. Rob and I talk about the four temperaments - he’ll explain these better than I can in one sentence, but in essence we’re talking about the four different personality type core values and motivators. By identifying which of the four temperaments each of your team members identifies with, you’ll be able to use more effective strategies to motivate, appreciate and engage each person.  Members of the Modern Manager community get a free Motivation and Feedback document. This will help you gain new insight into what makes people tick and how to tailor your feedback differently to each of the four temperaments for maximum impact. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: How To Motivate Your Employees Based on the 4 Temperaments KEEP UP WITH ROB Website: Typecoach.com Key Takeaways: Our temperament is our source of motivational energy.  There are 4 Temperaments based on categories of introversion/extroversion, judgers/perceivers, thinkers/feelers, sensory/intuitive.  Introversion/extroversion is whether we get energy from being alone or with others. Judging/Perceiving is how we prefer structure, whether playful or decisive planning. Sensory/Intuitive is how we take in and process information. Thinking/Feeling is whether we approach a situation through objective analysis or considering our feelings/values. The 4 Temperaments break down into Sensory Judgers, Sensory Perceivers, Intuitive Thinkers, and Intuitive Feelers. SJ (Sensory Judgers) are also known as Traditionalists. Their core values are reliability and responsibility. Don’t tell them to relax. If stressed, offer to take things off their plate.  SP (Sensory Perceivers) are more relaxed and playful about getting work done. Their core value is to take action and get results. Don’t micromanage SPs; they respond best to a free-spirited environment.  NTs (Intuitive Thinkers) are conceptual problem solvers who love long term strategic thinking. Their core value is leaving a positive impact. Give them context for why their work matters and benefits them. Don’t question their competency.  NFs ( Intuitive Feeler) are also known as The Idealists. They are future focused on new ideas, but are people and value-centered rather than analytical. NFs’ core values are helping others reach their full potential, and self actualizing in the process. Concentrate on building a strong environment of connection and belonging in the office for them to thrive. To figure out your team’s temperament, ask them what their motivational force is at work.  Experiment with giving teammates various feedback to see what most motivates them.  Be careful to remember individual temperament needs when stressed because that’s when we revert to personal preferences.  mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


30 Aug 2022

Rank #4

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218: Facilitate Effective and Inclusive Meetings with Rae Ringel

Managers all over the world facilitate meetings every day, but how many managers facilitate meetings well? The goal of facilitating a meeting is to create a space so that everyone can participate effectively. This may not come naturally to some managers, but it’s a skill that anyone can master with the right tools. Today’s guest is Rae Ringel. Rae is an executive coach, facilitator, author and founding President of The Ringel Group. She is a faculty member at the Georgetown University Institute for Transformational Leadership and founding director of their certificate program in the Art of Facilitation and Design. She is also a frequent columnist for Harvard Business Review. Rae and I talk about meeting facilitation. What facilitation really is, how to do it well when meeting in person or virtually, and Rae shares a bunch of facilitation tricks and activities you can immediately use with your team to improve your meetings. Members of the Modern Manager community get two articles Rae has authored and published in Harvard Business Review. “Please Stop Using These Phrases in Meetings” helps readers take control of their speech patterns by learning phrases that aren’t as helpful as you think. “When Do We Actually Need to Meet in Person?” helps leaders determine which factors of work can be kept virtual and which require being in-person. Get them when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: How to Facilitate an Effective Meeting KEEP UP WITH RAE Twitter: @ringelgroup LinkedIn: @rae-ringel Instagram: @julieraeringel Key Takeaways: Facilitation is creating the space in a meeting where everyone can participate. It’s important to start with a planned agenda and then be flexible enough to pivot when needed. Plan the activities ahead so you can prepare any materials, e.g. polls, Miro boards, etc. Virtual meetings have the potential to be more inclusive and comfortable for people. Leverage the strengths of technology to create a more inclusive meeting by using different modalities of participation. Consider how you can arrange the room, or ask people to arrange their physical space, to support effective engagement. Overemphasize the importance of the remote participants in a hybrid meeting. By focusing on them, you’ll boost engagement for everyone. Use collaborative online tools to support more equitable engagement, even if you’re fully meeting in person. Use the HIIT approach of alternating between passive and activity activities in a meeting. As a facilitator, your energy is contagious. People will remember how they feel when they leave more than your specific facilitation abilities. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


23 Aug 2022

Rank #5

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217: Plan Your Day with Ashutosh Priyadarshy

Ever feel like you don't have enough time because you're too busy working on tasks, attending meetings, and checking email? If so, you're not alone. Who has time for planning when there is so much to do?! In reality, a daily planning habit puts you in control of your schedule, workload, and productivity.  Today’s guest is Ashutosh Priyadarshy. Ashutosh is the Co-founder and CEO of Sunsama, a daily planning assistant that helps knowledge workers stay focused and productive throughout their workdays. Ashutosh has spent most of the last decade building and launching productivity software. His goal is to build products that help us navigate our work and life mindfully and intentionally. Ashutosh and I  talk about why daily planning is an important process, how we can use daily planning to boost productivity and feel a sense of accomplishment, and more. Members of the Modern Manager community get an exclusive 30-day free trial of Sunsama. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: Boost Productivity with Daily Planning KEEP UP WITH ASHUTOSH Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/sunsamahq/ Twitter: https://twitter.com/sunsamaHQ Website: https://get.sunsama.com/ Key Takeaways: Create a daily planning habit at a time that works best for you. It doesn’t need to be at the start of your day. Starting your day with a plan helps you focus on your most important tasks. Bring your calendar and tasks together to get an accurate picture of how you’ll spend your time. In addition to meetings and tasks, we have plenty of ‘work chores’ that need to be done every day. Share your daily plan with your team to keep people informed, create accountability, and encourage yourself to plan accurately. End your day with a reflection on what you accomplished to help feel fulfilled and build momentum. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


16 Aug 2022

Rank #6

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216: Design the Optimal Team Meeting

No matter how big or small your team is, there are always things to discuss. Most managers respond by holding weekly meetings. At their best, team meetings are a forum for open and productive communication between team members. At their worst, they waste everyone’s time and energy. If your weekly meetings aren't moving your work forward and leaving people in a positive mood, it’s probably time you redesign them. In this episode, I share practical advice that you can implement to make your weekly meetings more productive and enjoyable for everyone. The full episode guide includes an overview of the factors to consider when designing a team meeting, along with examples of team meeting structures, formats, and prework to consider using as a model for your team. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community or purchase the full guide at www.themodernmanager.com/shop. Get the free mini-guide at themodernmanager.com/miniguides. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles, and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: Make Weekly Team Meetings Work for Your Team Key Takeaways: There is no right way to have a team meeting. The key is to identify your meeting objectives so that you can design the meeting to meet those needs. Consider the flow of the agenda. How will you structure your time together to achieve the meeting objectives?  Team meetings can be as short as 15 minutes or as long as multiple hours, as long as the time is well spent. Determine what people can do to best prepare for the meeting. This could include completing a dashboard, contributing topics to discuss, or nothing at all. Don’t assume a weekly meeting is necessary. Sometimes daily or monthly cadences are more appropriate. Explore the format that will best meet the team’s needs. It could be in person, virtually, via Slack, or something else. Regularly revisit the design of your team meetings to assess if they are still meeting the team’s needs. It’s okay to experiment with different choices in order to optimize how your team meets. mamie@mamieks.com


9 Aug 2022

Rank #7

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215: Embrace Your Identity with Victoria Shiroma Wilson

Understanding identity is vital for managers. We all want to respect and better understand our colleagues, but in order to do that we must first understand ourselves. Identity informs how we relate to people, how we make decisions, and how we lead.  Today’s guest is Victoria Shiroma Wilson. Victoria is a leadership development coach and consultant who partners with world-class organizations and professionals to discover their purpose, develop a powerful vision, and design a strategy toward transformation. Victoria is valued as a big-picture visionary who empowers her clients to think boldly and holistically about their future by examining cultural and systemic influences within a greater ecosystem. Victoria and I talk about identity - what it is, which is so much more than DNA, how it informs how we show up as a leader and interpret the world, how understanding identity can help us better engage our colleagues and make decisions, and a whole lot more. Members of the Modern Manager community get a free handout that offers a set of eight reflective questions around the 4 Cs of exceptional management: Confidence, Collaboration, Communication, and Culture. In addition, the first member to email mamie@mamieks.com will receive a free copy of Victoria’s upcoming book, which will be published in September. Get these bonuses when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: Understand Identity to Lead More Powerfully KEEP UP WITH VICTORIA LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/victoriashiromawilson/ Website: https://www.exceptionalfutures.com/ Email: hello@exceptionalfutures.com Key Takeaways: Identity is formed through the outside in and inside out. It’s how we experience the world that informs how we perceive it and ourselves. We all make assumptions about identity and what the experience of a given identity entails, but often those aren’t true because identity is intersectional and complex. We can use our differences in identity if we switch from “I am” to “I see”. Instead of “I am a woman, therefore…” to “From my perspective, I see…” We all develop professional identities that are developed through internalizing the company culture and how people respond to us. Reflect on your own experiences to better understand their influence on your identity. Identity impacts how you lead, including how you make decisions because the information and perspective we bring to a decision is based on our experiences and identity. Misunderstandings can come from approaching a situation differently or with different past experiences or identities that we take for granted. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


2 Aug 2022

Rank #8

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214: Skills for Effective Communication with Richard Newman

Both verbal and nonverbal communication are critical interpersonal skills. Listening to others, observing their reactions, speaking in a way that promotes understanding and connection, using body language—these are all essential to our leadership development. Effective leaders must know that communicating is a combination of what you say, how you say it, and how you respond to what has been said back to you. Today’s guest is Richard Newman. Richard is the Founder of Body Talk. Over the past 22 years his team have trained over 120,000 business leaders around the world, to improve their communication and impact, including one client who gained over $1 Billion in new business in just one year, using the strategies that Richard teaches. Richard and I talk about the unspoken parts of communication, communicating effectively remotely, keeping people engaged in a meeting or presentation, and so much more.  Members of the Modern Manager community get a free audiobook version of Richard’s book, You Were Born to Speak. This work discusses everything he has learned in his 23-year journey, filled with practical strategies that you can apply immediately to transform your success. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: Revolutionize Your Team’s Communication With These Simple Skills KEEP UP WITH RICHARD Personal Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/richardnewmanspeaks/Business Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ukbodytalk/Personal LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/richardnewmanspeaks/Business LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/communicationskillstraining/ Book: You Were Born To Speak Website: https://ukbodytalk.com/ Key Takeaways: Communication is how we connect and build relationships. It’s a two way street of sending messages out and responding to others.  Use audio/video tools for any information with an emotional or nuanced context. Too much gets lost when using text only. Consider the direction and intention of your message and how you want others to feel and act afterwards.  Set up your Zoom screen so that your hands are visible. Hands are underrated as communication tools. The real problem isn’t Zoom Fatigue but Death By Powerpoint. Our survival brain doesn’t think the information is relevant to our lives and turns off. To combat this, use storytelling tools.  Get your team involved in the drama by providing context for why you are meeting. Ask what their personal challenges are and try to resolve them through the meeting. This activates their brain to feel invested. The people in the meeting - not the manager- are the heroes in the story.  Build up your team’s confidence in their communication skills by giving them opportunities to practice and providing positive feedback. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


26 Jul 2022

Rank #9

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213: Planning Your Week with Demir Bently

Be honest with yourself for a moment: Are you managing your time and tasks well? Do you have a weekly planning routine that helps ensure you’re focused on your most important work? Sometimes, just a few simple changes to your planning can help you find more freedom and fulfillment in your work. Today’s guest is Demir Bentley. Demir teaches hard-hitting efficiency techniques and proven accountability strategies that have helped clients generate millions in revenue while saving thousands of hours. In the past eight years, he’s helped more than 50,000 professionals, including executives from Facebook, Google, Uber and PepsiCo – helping them prevent burnout and create more freedom in their lives. And, Demir’s advice has been highlighted in Forbes, Bloomberg, Entrepreneur and more. Demir and I talk about the #1 routine you should do every week to exponentially improve your productivity…the weekly planning session. We get into how to do it, when to do it, and what makes it so powerful. Members of the Modern Manager community have a chance to get 1 of 20 free Kindle versions of Demir’s book, “Winning the Week”. In this book, Demir and Carey Bentley reveal their five-step method that radically reimagines how you plan and execute your week. Get it when you join the Modern Manager community. Subscribe to my newsletter to get episodes, articles and free mini-guides delivered to your inbox.  Read the related blog article: 5 Steps to a Productive Week KEEP UP WITH DEMIR Website: lifehackmethod.com Book: winningtheweek.com Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/lifehackbootcamp Instagram: http://instagram.com/demirandcarey Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/demirandcarey Key Takeaways: There are hundreds of productivity tips, tools, practices, habits, routines. Instead of trying to do them all or sift through to find the best one for yourself, start with the fundamentals of planning your week. Everyone knows about weekly planning but few people do it correctly, and most people don’t do it at all. To plan your week, start by removing the frictions or increasing your motivation to spend 30 minutes on the planning process. Follow these five steps: learn from how you worked last week, find one leveraged priority to include this next week, interrogate your calendar to surface issues, prioritize your to do list, add tasks to your calendar to ensure you’ve scheduled time to complete the important work. It is essential to know what you want to accomplish in order to be productive.  You can improve your personal productivity habits and routines, as well as increase productivity through automation, technology, and delegation. All of your productivity approaches should support your desired lifestyle, helping you live the life you desire. mamie@mamieks.com instagram.com/mamieks


19 Jul 2022

Rank #10