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Leadership in Action: Becoming Solutions-Focused with Open Feedback



From our friend and inspiring leader, Natalie Hutchinson, HR Specialist at Zippy Shell.



The Issue

When I started at Zippy Shell, a national moving and storage company, I quickly saw a couple of challenges. The first was that the existing staff were friends and family who were inexperienced in leading teams. The second was that the inexperience coupled with rapid growth was setting the stage for a negative culture to form. I knew that if we didn’t get ahead of that negativity that the company culture would suffer and, as a result, employee retention would become an issue.


The Shift Move

Healthy Responsibility and Feedback Training. My goal has been and still is to help the team switch from pointing fingers everywhere to looking inward and finding out what they can learn or improve on. I started one-on-one conversations guiding individuals away from venting and toward taking 100% responsibility and therefore being more productive and results-driven. I think the most noticeable change occurred when Crafted Leadership did a workshop with the team on giving and receiving feedback. Once leadership made an agreement among ourselves to be open for feedback, conversations started shifting from problems-focused to solutions-focused.


The Impact

Since we have had more open dialogue, I’ve seen the negativity slowly fade. There’s a noticeable feeling of teamwork that hasn’t been there before. As a result, as leaders we are starting to set a better example of the culture we want to have at Zippy Shell. Since we aren’t spending time and energy in the negativity we are also able to implement and brainstorm ways to retain employees better than we ever have before.


If YOU have stories of inspiring leadership in action, we’d love to hear them! Email Nancy at nancy@craftedleadership.com.

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