Wednesday, January 31, 2018

I Know Everything

"They'll have to recognize my success this year. I've been the most effective member of the team!"

"I don't need them. It's better if I do it myself anyway!"

"I'm the life of the party. Just look at how charming I can be!"

"Those ideas are so stupid. Why would I even waste my time listening to that point of view?"

"Fortunately I am usually right. I don't need to worry about making big mistakes any longer. I'm at the top of my game!"

"There's really no need to say I'm sorry. I haven't done anything wrong!"

"Wow, what is wrong with them? They don't seem to fit in at all!"
How About You
Sometimes we get caught up in our own stuff, right? Maybe today is the best day to step back, look at those around us, and put them first. It's not always "about us."

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.

Thursday, January 25, 2018

Meetings Are Excuses To Fail

I've attended a lot of meetings in my life. Actually, I've attended several life times worth. As a human resources leader, work is filled with "important" meetings and "critical" meetings and "high impact" meetings and just about every other cliche label for a meeting that you can think of.

And they're all lies.

Meetings Are Excuses to Avoid Work
Almost every meeting I've ever been to has been a complete waste of time.

Let me say that again...almost, every meeting I've ever been to has been a complete waste of time.

Harsh? Out of touch? Sour grapes?
Not at all. I'm not angry. I just don't want to waste so many hours of my life listening to drivel that should be shared in an email. Most meetings are "updates" or "report outs." 

Why in the world are we paying everyone to walk to a conference room, sit and chit chat, listen while every one takes turns giving updates, and then more chit chat, and finally a long walk to another conference room to do it all over again?

What in the world has happened to the modern world of work that we have convinced ourselves that report outs = work? Seriously?

It's All New to Me
I didn't always feel this way. I used to average between 25-30 meetings every week of the year. I thought I was "super busy" and "going hard" each day. What I was actually doing was wasting 20 or so hours each week doing nothing.



It comes as no surprise to me now as I help organizations take their performance to unimagined levels of success, that the meeting trap always gets in the way. The leaders constantly have to "run to a meeting" that adds zero value to their revenue, expense management, or furthering their culture.

How About You
When was the last time you completely eliminated a long-standing meeting that no longer added value? When was the last time you ensured only one member of your team attended meetings (versus the "key" people who really "should be there"?) When was the last time you said no to a request to attend a meeting? 

Or, is it simply safer to go to meetings and use your busy schedule as an excuse to be a failure?

It's 2018...we're better than that.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.


Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Senior Leaders, Cheap Talk, & Being Present

"Culture is to recruiting, as product is to marketing."
Hubspot's Culture Code

Culture, Culture, Culture
The word culture sure gets thrown around a lot, don't you think? For me, it's right up there with values. If I hear one more executive espouse their organization's values, without taking action to prove they matter, I think I might spit.

Every organization obviously has a culture. However, many organizations do not have the culture they claim, or they secretly know in their "heart" that theirs has unlimited room for improvement.

If we all know these things, claim our employees are our most valuable asset, and continue to preach our culture message over and over yet still have major gaps relative to reality, what is the missing piece?

All You Do To Me is Talk Talk
For many leaders, landing that big title or breaking into the executive ranks feels like the end of a long journey, when in fact, it is only the beginning. They often feel as if they can ramble on and on simply because they must be the smartest person in the room, just look at their title!

Think of leaders as the six players on a hockey team during a game. 

Six players, but twenty-thousand fans staring at them...watching every move...hoping for good decisions, and the effort to back up what they say when they are off the ice.

It's the same for us in leadership. There are only a few of us compared to all of the employees who work in our companies. 

They are watching every move...hoping for good decisions, and the effort to back up what we say during meeting after meeting after meeting.

Are you with me?

How About You
Words are incredibly powerful tools for leaders. They inspire, motivate, encourage, reward, hold accountable, recognize and fire up the people around them. But in the absence of action...or follow through...

...the words damage the credibility of that leader. 

It's time to back up the culture talk with culture ACTION!

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.


Thursday, January 11, 2018

Flowers 'AND' Weeds

I put a lot of energy into (trying) to be a positive person. I'm talking...fired-up, today is awesome, I love everybody and everything...kind of positive. It's not fake, or insincere. It's who I am.

Being Human
Despite my commitment to being Mr. Positivity, I often do battle with an old nemesis when it comes to maintaining that positive focus:

My brain.

The self-talk machine that we all carry around in our heads can be a powerful foe. It's as if we've been hardwired to "go negative" when things happen. Right?

So many questions...
- Why did this happen?
- What could I have done differently?
- Will this create more problems for me down the road?
- Who is this going to impact?

But, wait a minute here. It's as if our brain is trying to trick us into watering the negative weeds that grow in our heads.

And the 'talk' persists...
- I am a failure.
- I am no good.
- I am embarrassed.
- I am losing it.

When does it stop?!

I think the old adage of "powering through" in these moments doesn't really apply here (or anywhere for that matter.) Powering through negative feelings is simply not realistic or healthy.

Perhaps there is another way to reconcile that self-talk? 


Instead of the self-defeating messages we seem to have playing in a loop, maybe we could try a different approach.

"I made the wrong decision for the team; AND I am still a valuable member of the organization."

"I wish I had said something different in that moment; AND I'm thankful that relationship is still as strong as it ever was."

"When I look back, I can think of so many other things I should have done; AND I recognize that no one gets everything right...I'm human just like everyone else."

AND gives us perspective.
AND shows us a more complete picture of our world.
AND allows us to water those amazing flowers in our lives.
AND changes everything.
How About You
Maybe it's time you added one simple word into your self-talk monologue? It might make a really big difference.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.


Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Who was the last?

person you complimented on your team?

person you mentored?

person you helped during a tough time?

person you supported to receive a promotion?

person you were courageous enough to give honest feedback to?

person you held accountable?

person you told was a huge influence in your life?

person you noticed struggling and reached out? 

person you told you couldn't do it alone?

How About You
Who was the last person you thanked for everything they've done for you?

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.


Wednesday, January 3, 2018

New Year, Old Challenge

"The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity. The fears are paper tigers. You can do anything you decide to do. You can act to change and control your life; and the procedure, the process is its own reward."
Amelia Earhart

The start of each year is often filled with self-reflection, motivation to create change, or a list of 'goals' for the months ahead.

Perhaps this year, we should all focus on one simple task in our work lives...

...making decisions.

Indecisive leaders are perhaps the most frustrating, ineffective, and candidly useless members of the team. 

They don't add value, because they never make a decision. 

They don't command respect because no one is really sure where they stand on the issues. 

And, they don't instill confidence in their teams because their employees see the fear of failure in their eyes every single day.
How About You
Which leader in your organization do you need to reach out to this year to help make the decisions required in their role? Go to them today. Have an open and honest conversation...and help them realize their full potential this year.

I'd love to hear from you.

No Excuses.