Judge a book by it’s cover.

Peter* said to me, "You're courageous and enthusiastic.  Your energy inspired me.  I've accomplished things I wouldn't have started before."   We were performing an exercise providing others with evidence-based encouragement.  I was humbled.  I was honored.  I was confused. I didn't view myself as courageous and enthusiastic.  I didn't think of myself as inspiringly energetic.  I had hardly any interaction with Peter in our 7 weeks working together.   Yet I had this influence on him. Peter … [Read more...]

Leadership Larry David-style

I enjoy Curb Your Enthusiasm.  Some people don't.  I love how Larry David says what so many wouldn't.  Yes, it causes trouble sometimes.  But life has trouble sometimes.  Especially in business and relationships. I can spend hours, days or weeks coming up with right way to speak to a situation that's frustrating me.  It creates stress and anxiety for me.  While I'm trying to get things just right, the situation I want to address lingers on.  The longer I spend figuring out how to say what I … [Read more...]

You’ll never know unless you ask.

You're not so smart that you know all the answers.  Those people around you aren't as stupid as you think they are. I have never met a man so ignorant that I couldn't learn something from him. -Galileo Galilei Start asking questions of those who work for you and around you.  Do the same with those people you live with.   They may surprise you, make you money, or make your life easier.  That would be nice.  Wouldn't it? You'll never know unless you ask...  (Right, Mom?) … [Read more...]

Give back, get more.

Last week I was speaking with my friend, Ben*.  He's a business owner who opened his doors a few weeks ago.  His business is built on high touch, face-to-face sales.  One of his employees asked him if she could start using the Internet and phones to sell.  This would be a BIG change to his business model.   He had many concerns.  Legitimate concerns about things like costs, closing ratios, and the like.  He was trying to come up with all of the answers himself. This happens a lot.  A manager … [Read more...]

I don’t get no respect … this maybe why.

Rodney Dangerfield made a pretty good living with his trademark line,  "I don't get no respect.".   He made millions.  He started successful businesses.  His influence launched the careers of several iconic stars.  Here's the funny thing:  many people treated him with no respect offstage. He gave them permission when he told them  that he didn't get respect (even though it was a character).  We give permission to others to do that to us, too. Respect is about helping someone maintain their … [Read more...]

Lead forward.

I've heard that if sharks stop moving they die.  Everything that exists in our world demonstrates movement.  Rocks move.   Even if it's just at the molecular level. The cool thing is that we get to choose how we move.  We get to choose where we move.   Rocks are not so lucky. The word "Produce" comes from the Latin prōdūcere.   It breaks down to 'Pro': Forward and 'Ducere':  To Lead.   When we produce, we lead forward. Leading forward requires movement.  Leading forward requires … [Read more...]

Want better? Do better!

This afternoon my wife and I got home after a busy day away.  We've been busy for the last several days.   I noticed that our dogs were becoming more needy.  They wanted more attention.  When we got home this afternoon our dogs were out of their minds.  They were all over us.  They were panting ... Nudging against us.  And being generally annoying. After a few minutes, we realized we haven't paid much attention to the dogs this week.   We haven't taken them on walks.  When we've been home we … [Read more...]

Tattoo You – How are you leaving a mark?

I was listening to a message a couple of weeks ago about our innate need and desire to leave a mark.  Whether it's carving our name in a tree or donating enough money to fund a hospital wing ... we all look to create something to remember and be remembered by. Tattoos are a reflection of our desire to leave a mark.  Tattoos give people the power to leave a mark ... a mark that will last a lifetime.  A mark to be seen ... depending on where we put it.  They give people a sense of control.  … [Read more...]