3 keys to communication in the family

When I talk to our students about Teamwork I point out to them that the most important team that we are on is our FAMILY.  No other team needs the cooperation and vision that our family needs for long term success of all members.  Of course the leaders of that team is Mom & Dad.  While every team leader has different responsibilities, there are a couple of foundational standards that are true for all teams and especially families.

1.  Be consistent. Whether it is setting the rules, the making of decisions or in keeping our word, consistency is one standard that team members depend on.

2.  Be clear. Set forth what the values, morals and ethics are for your family.  Setting these expectations make it clear to all what is expected and it is much easier to follow a leader with clear expectations.

3.  Be courteous. By showing respect for everyone in your family, even the child that is giving you the hardest time at that moment, as a leader you are setting the tone for the family.  Everyone in the family is watching to see how you will deal with the member of your team that is not following the rules, determining for themselves how they will be treated.  Trust and respect can be gained or lost based on our being courteous to one another.

Teams / Families always reflect their leaders.  As the leader of our team / family we set the tone for respect being shown to each other and to those on the outside.   By setting the example with consistent, clear, and courteous communication with our team, the team will be more willing to participate and voice their thoughts and feelings, which in the end is what all parents want to have with their children.

Goal setting: Fall down 7, Get up 8

One of the most difficult parenting challenges we have is seeing our child fail at a task that we know that they really want to achieve.  In fact many parents have a tendency to do everything in their power to not allow their child fail – at almost anything.  We have discussed before how important it is for children to learn that failure is part of life and that we can reorganize and try again.  I am reminded of Thomas Edison, who after his factory burned to the ground said something to the affect of, that now they could get started on some new and better ideas.

This is a good time of the year as we look at what we have done this year and see the areas of our own failure to reach a goal to evaluate how we will react.  Our own reaction will teach our children how to reevaluate and move forward.  Take a look at this acronym and use it as a guide to moving forward.

F – finalize your goal

O – order your plans

R – risk failing by taking action

W – welcome mistakes

A – advance based on your character

R – reevaluate your progress continually

D – develop new strategies to succeed

If you stay determined, and are willing to get up when you have been knocked down, you will achieve not only your goals but also your dreams.

2011: Success is not perfection

As we draw near to the end of this year many of us are looking back at the year to see where we succeeded and reached the goals we set for ourselves and where we failed to do so.  Lester Thurlow once said, ” You can lose, or, if you want to win, you can change.”

As we make plans for this new year, as we set goals, one of the goals we should avoid is creating the perfect plan or even trying to reach that ultimate goal.  I once had a business coach that kept telling me that if I had the product 70% ready I should roll it out.  Don’t wait till you have it perfect.  I think I understand that now.  If you want to succeed, you are never finished.  Success is in the journey, it is in the process.

Every time you fail, it simply gives you another opportunity to begin again, to be better than last time.  It is simply a milestone on your road to success.  We do not have to be perfect, we simply have to continue to adjust and keep moving.  If we surround ourselves with those that expect more of you than you do yourself we will stay on the success journey.