PDCA Cycle Post 2, Mentoring Leadership Life Coaching

The next step in the Plan, Do, Check, Adjust cycle is to find mentors in the areas of life where you aspire to be better. I am not suggesting that you lose your uniqueness though. Many times, what attracts us to people we would like to have as mentors, is what they have done and who they are.  In other words they are unique. Never be a cheap copy of a great original.  However, with that warning, you will never grow to your full potential without a great mentor or mentors!  If you pattern your habits and actions after people with the results you want, guess what will happen to you?  You will have achieved what they have achieved.  Their experience, insight, and wisdom provide guidance through the PDCA growth cycle.   Mentors provide missing pieces to the puzzle you probably don’t have the experience or insight to discover on your own.

For a great Video on Mentorship check out this video by ORRIN WOODWARD, Leadership Guru, Mentor, LIFE Coach.

The secret to having a great mentoring experience lies in your ability to formulate and ask great questions.  Don’t go to your mentor and expect them to give you a golden nugget unless you are mining the gold in them first.  Mining the gold, means, to come prepared.  I see people make this mistake because they expect their mentor to “read their mind” and somehow solve all their problems.  That is not mentoring, that is magic!  Remember the relationship principle of “you will get the best out of others when you give the best of yourself.”  This principle applies to the people you are leading, and, applies to the people you are following. You will get the best from your mentors when you give the best of yourself first.  Giving your best means, coming prepared for a mentoring session.  Whether it is doing what your mentor told you to do at a previous session or coming prepared with detailed questions to ask, there should never be a shortage of principles or practices to discuss and learn.  One of the best ways to learn, is, to teach and do.  By pouring his or her life into you through mentoring, the mentor grows as well.  Think about it this way: if you stretch your mentor’s learning capacity, they will want to give you their best, and, have more mentoring sessions. This is a win-win relationship.  Start your session by saying, “this is what you said, this is what I did, did I do it right, and can I ask you more questions.”  Those 4 simple statements set the stage for a great PDCA learning experience.  Now find a mentor and get to work.

Lead On.

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PLAN DO CHECK ADJUST Growth Cycle

As leaders, we are all constantly challenged to learn, grow, adapt, change, encourage, and lead in whatever situation life throws our way.   It is very hard to know if we are on the right track by feelings alone.  Someone once said, “You can tell when you are on the road to success because the road is uphill the entire way.”  That very statement continues to serve me well in my ongoing efforts to Plan, Do, Check, and Adjust. It helps my focus, as I strive to keep myself, and my actions, flowing in a consistent, steady direction.  With the proper “checks and balances” in place, we are like a flowing river, staying between the walls, as we flow down the stream toward our purpose.  Without the proper PDCA cycle, we may feel frustrated, and our “ river of purpose” may turn into the “rapids of chaos”!  It is imperative for any leader, whether established, or beginning, to always do a “check up from the neck up” to insure their efforts are being maximized to their greatest potential.

We all have heard the old saying, “practice makes perfect.” People, who follow proper PDCA, believe in the saying “perfect practice makes perfect.”  Just because you are practicing does not mean you will perfect your skill.  It just means that whatever you are practicing will become permanent.  Laurie Woodward has said from stage many times that, “the lesson will continue until the lesson is learned.”  Learning lessons from those negative circumstances that occur in our lives keep them from happening again.

Incorporating the proper PDCA cycle into ones daily regime is crucial to taking charge of one’s life.  However, just because you practice proper PDCA habits, does not exclude you from life’s curve balls.  Because great leaders have made a habit of following the PDCA routine, they avoid having their feelings hurt, and instead, find solutions to problems.  As Leadership Guru Orrin Woodward says, we cannot always control what happens to us, but we can control how we react.  We can either pick the side of our rights and privileges, or we can pick the side of our responsibilities and obligations.  Either way, the choice of being a victim or a victor is completely up to us!   People that use the PDCA cycle always choose to be on the side of the victor.  How do you want your life to be? Always the victim, with no control over outcomes, or, do you choose to be the victor, in control, responsible for the outcomes?

So, how do you develop and establish effective PDCA habits? First, you have to provide an answer to one very important question: What is your purpose in life?  Once you answer that honestly, you can move forward.  As the famous saying goes, “If you aim at nothing, you will hit it every time.”  If you really want to accomplish the purpose for your life, you must realize change and growth will be necessary.  Max DePree, leadership expert, said, “You can’t become what you need to be by remaining what you are.”   Many think change is an insult to their individualism, instead of a catalyst to their potential.  If you want to accomplish something you have never accomplished before, you are going to have to do and learn things you have never done or learned before.  It really is that simple, but admittedly not that easy. It requires constant evaluation!

Lead On.

Coming Soon

Mr. Terry Franks will soon be posting inspired leadership knowledge.  Mr. Franks has been developing his own leadership skills and those of other men and women that he mentors for over twenty years.  Mr. Franks councils with the top leadership guru’s Claude Hamilton and number seven leadership guru Orrin Woodward.