Photo Courtesy of NYT

This weekend, The New York Times writer Adam Bryant published a Q&A interview with Tiffany Cooper Gueye who is the chief executive of BELL, a nonprofit that assists urban children from under-resourced communities to achieve academic and life success.

Cooper Gueye discusses her first experiences and challenges as a manager when she was just 20, a college senior, at BELL. She discusses the need to be direct with colleagues while working a leadership role, saying the most important thing is to “provide direct, honest, clear feedback.”

Cooper Gueye articulates that oftentimes finding great employees begins with an interview and pointed interview questions to reveal motivation, attitude, personality and skills. She tries to take her interviewees off script to identify qualities like self-awareness and humility in order to target ways that new employees might get along with existing employees and the work load.

Over time and experience, Cooper Gueye says she has come to value people and teamwork more than production by gaining an appreciation for the process it takes to complete projects. In closing, she says, “you have to find ways to communicate often” to bring people along.

Read the full article “Want to Inspire? Don’t Sugarcoat Your Feedback” by Adam Bryant on The New York Times.

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