The Disciplined Professional

25 Jun
by Bridget DiCello

Do you wish you had more disciplined employees? Employees who would routinely and consistently deliver high-quality work?

A disciplined employee is a product of their own work ethic but also rely on the discipline of their manager and their work environment.

What does a disciplined manager look like?

1. Tracks metrics. Someone who is disciplined keeps track of their current performance, any dips, and any increases. Not only does the manager track the employees’ performance, but they track their own performance, and share what is relevant with the rest of the team.

2. Does the tough things. In every job, there are tasks that are important but not necessarily urgent, that no one may want to do. They will improve overall performance once they become routine. The disciplined manager needs to lead by example in their own work, and employees will follow by doing the tough, but important, tasks in their jobs.

3. Gets started.  Often the hardest part is to get started, even if it is to take a small step on a difficult project or task. The disciplined person takes that first step forward.

4. Focuses on professional development. A disciplined person is continually looking for ways to professionally develop. This goes beyond performing well every day, to looking for ways to perform better, differently, and grow professionally.

5. Tweaks their own performance. A manager who is disciplined not only professionally develops, but also improves their own daily performance incrementally. This often requires the discipline of monitoring, identifying small steps that can be taken, and acknowledging those small steps and progress both for themselves and for the rest of the team to follow their example.

6.  Is passionate. Discipline is defined by words such as “rigorous, training, control, regimen, rules, state of order.” They certainly don’t sound like a whole lot of fun. However, when you combine a level of discipline with a passion for creating, contributing, and achieving that about which you are passionate, great and exciting things can happen. Although the trip may be tough, the results are significant and rewarding. The disciplined manager is passionate enough about the work they are doing to inspire others to follow the rules and regimens, which are improved with innovation over time, but consistently move forward.

Are you disciplined enough to achieve that about which you are passionate?


I Don’t Have a Bad Attitude!

18 Sep
by Bridget DiCello

“I don’t have a bad attitude, I just have a personality that you can’t handle!” When I saw this on the back of a woman’s shirt at the store the other day, I couldn’t help but verbally and enthusiastically acknowledge, “That is so true!” She looked at me strangely, probably thinking the shirt would keep her out of discussion, not start them.

What is a bad attitude?

  • Negative emotions displayed in a place or at a time where they are inappropriate?
  • A shield or wall to keep people away?
  • A mask for fear or lack of self-confidence?
  • A feeling that no one understands where I’m coming from, nor do they care to find out?
  • An honest but inappropriate lack of focus, prioritizing or caring about the situation at hand?

All of these could be accurate descriptions of what’s behind a bad attitude.

Your effectiveness at interacting with and leading others is dependent on your ability to find the person, the potential, the objections, the fears, the challenges and the disengagement behind the wall of “bad attitude”.

How many personalities are there that you can’t handle? That number is directly and inversely related to your success. There are personalities that I can’t handle – one of which is the personality that has absolutely no interest in self-development and improvement. The person believes so strongly that they are right, and although others may need to improve, they themselves do not.

However… I have not found many personalities like that. Most that appear that way are hiding something else, have built a very high wall, and no one has patiently worked hard enough to pull it down to find the willing person behind it.

It takes a lot of coaching conversations, accountability measures and supportive goal setting to work through bad attitudes. And there are times where the return on investment is not believed to be large enough to make it worth it.

Just be cautious. Next time you want to label someone with having a “bad attitude,” ask yourself as the leader if this is just a personality that YOU can’t handle.