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Category: Business

There’s no future in normal; An essay by Todd Schnick

A friend posted something on Facebook recently: “There’s no future in normal.”

For some reason, this struck a chord with me. Too many of us are trying to be normal. To be accepted. To NOT rock the boat. Societal and (most) cultural expectations inform us this is a good thing.

But deep down, we all know it is a path towards mediocrity.

And is that what we really want? Is that truly what you strive for? You’d probably tell me no, if I asked you the direct question.

But yet, most of us strive towards normal, because that’s what we think we are supposed to do, and our fearful instincts guide us to do.

And I know this based on the actions we all take. You may say otherwise, but we all know, it’s the actions we take that truly define who and what we are.

As we approach a new year, we’ve all just come off several weeks or reading stories of the great success stories from the past year: stories of entrepreneurs, startups, non-profits, and artists of all kinds, the people and organizations that made headlines over the past year.

And you know what? That thing that made them different? The thing that made them stand out? Got them noticed? Do you know what it was?

They didn’t do normal.

They were anything but normal.

They broke convention. Did something new. Didn’t follow societal rules and expectations.
And now they are being celebrated. See how this works?

Let this be a lesson to all of us: you cannot be normal and expect to stand out. You cannot be normal and expect to create art that mystifies. You cannot be normal and expect to disrupt markets.

Let this be what you focus your thinking on as we start a new year. How can we be ANYTHING but normal? What do we have to do? How can we commit to this new mindset?

Because as we now understand: there’s no future in normal.


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Using Whole-Body Wisdom in Business; An essay by Guy Pierce Bell

Our bodies are self-organizing systems capable of achieving what we might still consider miracles. This is what I refer to as whole-body wisdom. Sadly, our society—especially in business—discredits the power our bodies hold. But the body is a powerful force.

Our bodies have three main processing centers: the heart, gut, and mind. When we align our heart and gut (our most neglected processing centers) with our mind (the only one many of us use) we begin to tap into our true power.

Our modern medical system is slow to join the centuries of knowledge validating the existence of whole-body wisdom. Thankfully, there is research being done to prove what healers the world over have practiced.

The resistance to healers helping people through periods of disease is twofold. First, we trust scientists in all their shortcomings more than we trust our felt sense. Scientists and doctors appeal to our minds, our most overly-utilized processing center. In turn, we give our power away to them, rather than harnessing the power within.

The second factor is good old-fashioned greed. The trillions of dollars spent on cancer alone is reason enough to downplay and criminalize actual healing.

However, if we can harness our bodies’ wisdom, we will see our lives improve exponentially, in business and outside of it too.

Trust Your Gut, Follow Your Heart, Quiet Your Mind

In all honesty, the full depth of our whole-body knowledge is beyond our ability to process—don’t try. However, our whole-body awareness is both exponentially complex and perfectly simple.

Let go of needing to know how it works. (Or, if you’re a scientist, spend your entire life using your mind to discover how it works.) Until you reach this impossible destination of knowing completely, you will continue to learn by feeling through your heart, gut, and mind— collectively—and trust it for what it is: the foundation of your intellect.

Trust me: you have to experience true whole-body wisdom in order to believe it.

In the business world, we have a love-hate relationship with gut wisdom: we oscillate between trusting and then distrusting our gut. Some of this ebb and flow has more to do with what we read than what we feel, as many authors both support and then debunk this idea of gut instinct.

You should absolutely trust your gut! You will always use your brain—you don’t need to actively choose that processing center—so don’t wait for your intellect to compute a situation or your ego to interfere. Free yourself of thought and feel into the situation, whether it’s in your personal life or in business.

Every Business Problem is a Personal Problem

If you continue to practice whole-body wisdom, you’ll discover that every single business problem ties into a marital problem, or a parenting problem, or a self-control problem in your life. Every role you play and each mask you wear all ties back to a lack of understanding yourself and your body.

It’s scary to recognize the deep impact you can have on the people around you and, as an extension, the world. That’s why nobody feels into that possibility. Fear is at the center of every limitation!! Period!

When your mind is filled with fear, and you don’t feel with your heart and your gut, you create nothing of lasting value. You may use fear to drive performance or to make sure everyone knows who’s boss.

In that case, just know that the results you get from that place are temporary, and any satisfaction you feel is only in your ego. If that sits well with you, then you are not living your life present with your whole-body wisdom.

Most of us are not engaged at work, and it’s because we aren’t living in alignment with our whole-body wisdom. Employees the world over want more from their work experience and more out of life. When we awaken to the potential awaiting us and become the change people are asking for, we all benefit.

Practicing whole-body wisdom requires that you unlearn the endless limiting beliefs of your mind and gain the ability to tap into your gut, your heart, and your mind together to unlock your unlimited potential.


GUY PIERCE BELL

Over the past twenty-five years, Guy has led publicly held, equity backed, and privately owned businesses with a not-for-profit thrown in. In many cases Guy was hired to turn-around performance. Throughout his experiences, he has developed a deep understanding of the pointless discord between business and people. He is convinced business has the unique ability to change the world for good, but only if we choose to unlearn the dogma of limiting thoughts and behaviors. Success is easy. Sustainable success is hard. Part people – part systems. His success equation: when you get people right, you get business right. Guy teaches organizations and their leaders how to expand beyond their limiting beliefs into their full potential. Email. Website.


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Fostering the hidden superpowers of introverts; An Interview with Katie Rasoul


Joined on the show by Katie Rasoul, Founder + Chief Awesome Officer with Team Awesome Coaching, and the author of Hidden Brilliance: A High-Achieving Introvert’s Guide to Self-Discovery, Leadership and Playing Big.


Click here to listen to Katie Rasoul, the Intrepid interview!


Notes + Discussion Guide from today’s conversation with Katie Rasoul:

  1. High-achieving introvert. Oxymoron?
  2. “Don’t assume that leaders are extroverts.”
  3. Discussion around the benefits of being a high-achieving introvert, especially in the context of leaders.
  4. “Listening is a superpower.”
  5. “The whole point of leadership is to form relationships with your talent.”
  6. Can introverts be considered NOT engaged?
  7. Importance of asking open-ended questions…
  8. Self-discovery…paying attention to our inner critics.
  9. Developing and harnessing your internal “Board of Directors.” Or, how to listen to yourself…
  10. “You should embrace the exercise of asking the hard questions internally.”
  11. “Why am I living based on someone else’s definition of success?”
  12. What happens if your definitions of personal success do not align with your current work?
  13. Katie’s three keys to success: Effective, Fulfilled, and Confidence.
  14. The “Slash and Burn” strategy. Or, what needs to go!
  15. Why FEAR can be a good thing! It enables you to “play big!”
  16. How to form daily habits and practices around all of this.
  17. The process of “cleansing your palate.” Finding space for yourself…
  18. “Getting as specific as possible.”
  19. What can employees do to community their needs as an introvert?
  20. What can management do to better serve/support the introverts in their organization?

Find Katie Rasoul’s book here:


View Katie Rasoul’s TEDx video here:


About Katie Rasoul:

Katie has led leadership development, team culture, employee engagement, organizational development and human resources best practices for more than a decade. She has most recently served as a Vice President of Human Resources for a nearly $4 billion publicly traded company, and also has extensive experience in leading operations and human resources, predominantly in the fast-paced retail industry.


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How High Achievers Can Overcome The Post Goal Achievement Letdown Syndrome; An essay by Beth Bridges


How High Achievers Can Overcome The PGALS After a Big Win

Yes! You did it!

You completed a marathon. Published a book. Got the big promotion. Took that vacation of a lifetime. Married the love of your life.

You should be feeling great. On top of the world. The joy of this moment should last forever.

Instead, two days later you feel disappointed.

Uh oh, you’ve got PGALS.

I’m just getting over a bout of it myself. I recently finished creating and teaching the first cohort of my new high-level networking master class and competed in the “Huntsman World Senior Games,” winning my age group in the 800 meters and 1500 meters.

Once I got over the physical exhaustion, instead of feeling thrilled and proud, I was restless and listless. It’s a strange combination that really doesn’t put you in any kind of good mental state. I couldn’t really rest, but I also couldn’t wrap my head around another challenge yet.

I started feeling guilty about not celebrating during every waking moment. I was feeling let down instead of elated after making these big goals. That’s when I decided to name it PGALS… “Post Goal Achievement Letdown Syndrome.”

Turns out that post achievement depression is very common among high achievers.

Once you understand that, you too can take positive actions to not let this normal process drain away the value and excitement of what you just did.

Take Time to Celebrate and Reflect

Too often we’re like someone who gulps their food down without pausing. We gobble up that big win and before it even has time to digest, we’re grabbing for the next one. The harder and longer you worked to achieve something, the longer you should take to enjoy the results.

Linger over those vacation pictures, tell your marathon story over and over, gaze at your newly wedded beloved! Take your medals into your co-working space (confession: I still have them in my briefcase bag). Keep mementos visible such as the medal you earned or framed vacation photos.

We tend to forget over time how important something was or how big of a deal it was at the moment, especially if we’re constantly improving and our big goals are measurable things such as PRs or business sales goals.

If you keep a journal of your accomplishments be sure and write down how great it felt at the time to make that big win.

Understand The Hedonic Treadmill

This is our tendency as humans to return to a fairly narrow range of happiness over the long run even when really great or terrible things happen. Even though you’ve accomplished this incredible feat, built this amazing thing, etc. you still will be about as happy as you were before.

If you understand this, you can plan for and even anticipate that while the experience might be life or career-changing, it’s not going to make you magically more happy forever.

Don’t Fall for the Tyranny of Expectations

It’s not so much the actual results that are the problem, but what we expected to happen. If you thought you were going to get a $10,000 a year raise, and you “only” got a $5,000 raise, you might actually be mad. Even though you still got a raise.

Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, is actually quite the practical philosopher as well as cartoonist. He subscribes to having “no expectations,” especially in particular to meeting new people. When he was single, he worked to meet lots of new people but had no expectation on whether he thought he would date them. As he said in a blog post, “If I meet someone with a 4.5 tennis level and lots of free time, perhaps I have a new tennis partner. If we click on some other level, that’s great too. No expectations.” (This is also great advice for networking by the way because it makes for a very pleasant first meeting.)

If it wasn’t as big a win as you expected, you might have won, but still be disappointed. I did this when I competed in the USATF Masters Nationals track meet. I ran a PR for the 1500 meters, but it wasn’t anywhere near what I was expected. My coach said, “I’ve never seen anyone so unhappy about a PR!” I realized I was being unfair to myself and immediately adjusted my attitude. Besides, if Coach is happy, the runner is happy!

Success Breeds Success

In the job search world, they talk about “transferable skills” meaning you might not have the exact experience they’re looking for, but something you’ve done can apply to the possibility of success.

That’s what achieving big goals can do for you. Once you’ve broken through a massive barrier, then that natural tendency to look around to figure out what you can conquer next is a great way to keep the momentum going. Just give yourself time to enjoy it and recuperate before climbing the next Grand Teton!

Even so, if you’re a high achiever, you’re probably always going to experience higher levels of restlessness and “Okay, next!” than your more mellow counterparts.

There’s value in knowing that it’s natural to have a let-down after a big goal. By putting a name to it like “Post Goal Achievement Let-down Syndrome,” I remind myself that it’s all part of the territory and that I can navigate it in a way that helps me continue to grow and develop while not losing my edge.

Take a moment and do the same for yourself.


BETH BRIDGES is the author of “Networking on Purpose: A Five-Part Success Plan to Build a Powerful and Profitable Business Network.” She attended over 2,500 networking events in 10 years, secured a new job in 18 hours with one email, and launched a marketing consulting business through networking. She speaks at chambers of commerce, associations, and conferences across North America. Beth, 2018 Western Regional 400m and 800m W45 Champion, is training to compete in the World Masters Athletics Championships in 2020. Learn more at The Networking Motivator.


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Welcome to the creative age; An essay by William Childs

Imagine a power so strong that no army can defeat it. Imagine that this power never gets depleted. In fact, the more you use it, the more you have of it. Who wouldn’t want that type of unlimited power? Well, that very power resides inside all of us. I’m speaking of course about creativity.

The first use of the word “creativity,” was by the 17th-century poet Maciej Sarbiewski — but he applied it only to describe the creation of poetry. For over a century and a half, the idea of human creativity was rejected, because the term “creation” was reserved for creating “from nothing.”

Human creativity has been being studied and explored in countless books, podcasts, websites, magazines, in both the public and the private sectors. We’ve crossed the event horizon where creativity is now an accepted way to drive change and innovation.

The fields of music, science, technology, architecture, art, business, education, literature, medicine or engineering are necessary for our country’s continued growth and prosperity. People like Steve Jobs, Louis Pasteur, Nikola Tesla, George Washington Carver, Marie Curie, Frank Lloyd Wright, Miles Davis, Ayn Rand, Emelia Earhart, Maya Angelou, Pablo Picasso, among countless others. They all used significant amounts of creativity to break through the limitations they encountered to make invaluable contributions which enhanced our world. They were all ridiculed.

It doesn’t matter if you’re a Nobel Prize-winning physicist working on the Higgs boson particle or a middle school student working on your next science fair project. Both must access creativity if they hope to stand out from everyone else. Today, the demand for people who are willing to lead us beyond what we think we’re capable of achieving is in high demand.

We need those people who won’t accept the ‘Well, we’ve always done it that way’ mentality. Good leaders know that sometimes they’re going to have to bend a few rules to help us push us past our limitations. No of us will change the world by being safely ensconced inside our comfort zone. Innovation is messy. It doesn’t follow a straight path and certainly won’t track neatly onto a spreadsheet.

We need to consider that our world has seen more change in the last one hundred years than it has in the last billion years and creativity is leading the charge. In his groundbreaking book titled, ‘The Rise of the Creative Class, which recently just celebrated its tenth anniversary, author Richard Florida, who is considered to be one of the world’s leading experts on economic competitiveness, and technological innovation explored the rise of creativity as a fundamental economic force, and discovered that creativity is indeed experiencing a renaissance.

“Human creativity is the most spectacularly transformative force ever unleashed, and it is something that all of us can draw on to one degree or another. If the rise of this new order and new social class poses tremendous challenges, it carries the seeds of its resolution as well,” said Florida.

Thankfully, even though creativity is now being taken seriously as an economic driver, more work needs to be done before creativity receives the full status it deserves. The old stereotype of creative people sitting around on their beanbag chair looking for meaning through the incandescent glow of their Lava Lamp still lingers.

Creativity can be intimidating to the people who don’t fully understand it. Ask Greek philosopher and mathematician Pythagoras how it went for him when he proposed the radical idea the Earth was not flat in 500 B.C.

Every revolution has its critics. This one is no different. Accessing your creative resources is one of the best options anyone can use to separate themselves from the dross of mediocrity that often permeates society. I’m excited to see more examples where creativity gets the proper status it rightly deserves. The most challenging part anyone will ever face when trying to bring creativity into a workplace is the knowledge that not everyone is going to share your enthusiasm about it. Don’t let that stop you.

The world needs people with the guts to stare down their fear of failure and move forward anyway. Stay positive, stay humble and never settle. Remember, we’ve all been programmed to avoid failure because of the criticism that usually follows it. Don’t be fooled; it’s the critics that carry all the fear.


WILLIAM CHILDS | Creative Director | Brand Storyteller | Columnist | Optimist

Bill is an accomplished creative leader with a history of delivering award-winning campaigns for a variety of businesses. Relentlessly dedicated to the skillful and creative translation of strategic business objectives, he’s known as a collaborative mentor and champion of fearless creativity. With a career spanning three decades, Childs knows how to take an acceptable idea and turn it into an exceptional one. His reputation of setting high creative standards while helping to create a culture of genuine collaboration and engagement is one of things he’s most proud of across his career. Recognizing and mentoring talent, and building high-performing, cohesive teams is one of his passions. Email. Website. Twitter. LinkedIn.


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The Warrior Spirit: How We Need it More Than Ever; Essay from Chris Schafer

“Come back with your shield – or on it.”

An essay from Chris Schafer
Many of us will recognize the above statement from the movie 300. Scholars believe Spartan mothers used it as their sons departed for battle. Not in a malice way but encouragingly and lovingly. The value and implementation of this type of warrior spirit in today’s culture are missing, and its essence is needed more than ever. Re-invigorating the warrior sprit, however, takes comprehension and discipline.

After nine combat tours serving this great nation and blessed with a wife that possess the warrior spirit, I believe a fitting translation for the Spartans mothers cry is merely this.

“You will face trials of many kinds in life; I expect that you will give it everything you have.”

This is a far cry from the Lawn Mower Parents of today’s culture. Learn more about lawnmower parents here.

Several archetypes typify the overprotective and enabling but seldom do we hear about the warrior archetypes. I believe its due in significant part to fear and a lack of understanding of how the warrior archetype is a benefit to society as a whole. These are severe roadblocks to fostering the warrior archetype and defeating these roadblocks is not an easy task.

I have fought many battles throughout my children’s upbringing to instill the warrior spirit in them. Numerous times overwhelming resistance against the principals of the warrior spirit has won the day. Even when fought with sobering reality and solid reasoning both my wife and me have failed to change the outcomes of how events transpire. I offer the following story.

Once, we argued to keep score at my son’s baseball games. He was playing on a city league for ages under nine. We pointed out the fact that the boys were keeping score and knew when they were winning or losing. We were agreed with but denied. Instead, the coach and parents pretended that everyone was a winner even when some of the boys were visibly upset that they lost. I couldn’t figure out which was worse. Denying the boys their true feelings or acting so ignorant in the face of truth. Regardless, the ability to foster warrior principals like engaging in a common struggle and to honor others when defeated was lost. Many see this story as an unrelated petty issue, and I disagree.

Something for Nothing

As I have already mentioned the warrior spirit is suppressed by not keeping score during sports, and everyone receives a trophy mentality, but there are many others. Consider:

• Our education system that passes students regardless of their ability.
• Our legal system that allows irresponsible suits for those that do not take responsibility for their actions.
• Our leaders managers and officials that use their position to serve themselves.

Every one of these activities is outside the warrior principals and unfortunately reinforced hourly.

Hundreds of times a day we are bombarded by media campaigns that promote something for nothing or wealth and happiness because its deserved. The media is not the only entity that supports these anti-warrior ideals. The disturbing thing is that each in their own way weaves a common thread in the messaging. They all encourage and support the victimization and entitlement mentality. Both victimization and entitlement are defeatist attitudes that the warrior can not embrace. The warrior spirit guards against any assurance that there will be an easy day. The warrior understands that every day is a new day regardless of yesterdays success.

When the warrior spirit is understood and embraced, it materializes more resilient productive leaders, employees, and youth. The warrior spirit is the anti-establishment of entitlement and victimization. Even with these positives, we must guard against some common risk.

Risk

Without an understanding of the warrior spirit values, we cannot instill it nor correct it when it strays. Deprived of the values and valor that create an honorable and loving warrior spirit the ideals become distorted and eventually destroyed. When the principals of the warrior spirit are destroyed individuals justify activities that cause hate giving rise to gangs and terrorists.

Terrorists and gangs serve only themselves. Their purpose is a twisted mindset of “we against everyone” and uses immoral violence to create outrage and fear. They reinforce their resolve through unfounded self-pity and encourage civil disobedience. Both are clearly outside the selfless service and empathy inherent of the warrior spirit. Warriors do not let self-pity influence how they act or interact with others.

Understanding

Without understanding the warrior spirit, we increase the follower mentality absent of critical thinking which encourages acceptance without searching for truth. Without the firm resolve possessed by a warrior, thought police are emboldened to bully those that may have different ideas or beliefs. The warrior spirit can hold a thought without accepting it. This ability is at the heart of the warrior thought process and is a strong defense against acting out irrationally against differing values and beliefs.

Beneficial Values

Warriors protect those that they love and defend the right of the collective in which they are to protect. This is true even if the collective they are charged with safeguarding has contempt for them. A warrior’s valor is driven from the following principals:

• Values self-sacrifice and endures hardships.
• Engages decisively against authority when needed.
• Is cautious of anyone that tells a story from a removed perspective.
• Warriors seek to simplify the difficult and drive to the core quickly without prejudice.
• Recognize injustice and oppression and intervenes with deeds.
• State “Here I am. Send me!”
• Willing to give their life for another.
• Harbors no malice towards a defeated enemy.
• States truth without regard to personal gain.
• Practices restraint and patience.

False Warriors

How few warriors we genuinely have that understand the concept of the warrior spirit fully. Instead, we have numerous fake warriors that kneel or stand before others in a public forum declaring “this might be my Rubicon moment.” Other times its falsely personified by leaders when they say “let us go to war” in some twisted ideal of motivating the masses. Utterances like these point out an evident lack of understanding about warfare and the warrior spirit and do not follow the principles above. Unfortunately for these false leaders, there is little hope of reforming them into real warriors.

As a nation we have to instill it in our youth at a young age beginning with keeping score, teaching that success and happiness are not free and failure is not causation for a victimization narrative.

###

Editor’s Note: Be on the lookout for more posts that expands on the idea of the Warrior Spirit from Chris Schafer. If you resonate with this article, follow the link below to get your copy of Intrepid Professionals today, where you will find more concepts of the warrior spirit.


CHRIS SCHAFER is a retired Green Beret and the COO of Tactical16 Publishing. He is an expert in leadership and business development with 13 years of experience. Chirs Co-Author the book Intrepid professionals. A book that equips executives, managers, entrepreneurs and self-improvement seekers to understand and leverage principles of the military mindset. Chirs has advised foreign militaries, worked in 20 countries, and with numerous U.S. agencies including the FBI and DEA. He resides with his wife and children in beautiful Colorado.

You may also email Chris here, or call him at 719.398.8002.


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Stop Creating Layers of Management; An essay by Guy Pierce Bell

Ah, remember those good times in your business. You were so flush with cash and revenue was growing so rapidly that you didn’t know what to do with all your money. Every move you made was golden, and everyone in your company was aligned with your mission.

Essay by Guy Pierce Bell
The executive team took luxurious trips. You ate out at lavish restaurants. You took clients to ball games. The best part was, none of your expenses were ever questioned.

I’ve been there before, and I’ll be perfectly honest: I loved every moment of it. As a consultant, it felt great when I’d finally be working in a business that was moving forward rather than trying to turn around a businesses that was struggling to make payroll.

Maybe you’re experiencing those good times now. Maybe you’ve never experienced them before. Either way, the good times aren’t everything they’re cracked up to be—they can be a mask to cover up real problems in your business.

Especially management problems. Success can bring about layers of management, where people communicate with each other less. The less people communicate, the more likely your business will go from flush with cash to flushing it down the toilet.

The Unnecessary Layers of Management

In almost every company I’ve worked with, I’ve noticed certain trends emerge. One of those trends was the creation of layers between management, meaning communication was hindered across departments or up and down the organizational ladder.

In most of the companies I’ve worked with, there were definitely layers of management and endless meetings to get a pulse of what was going on. That didn’t feel good—real and accurate information was hard to come by, and that made everyone disconnected.

It quickly became clear that at a certain level in the organization, everyone was an interpreter, and most interpretations were skewed. Communicating took a herculean effort as the layers created the world’s most frustrating telephone game.

By the time those at the top got any message, it was anything but true and accurate to the original meaning. Most of the people filtering those messages were playing the political games, so they’d skew the message to fit their agenda. Some of them expanded their power to protect their favorite people.

None of it made sense.

Growing your business requires speed and action. Overlayering your company—by making people communicate too far up the chain of command to take action—slows your growth and, over time, kills morale.

Only add go-betweens when it’s absolutely necessary. And for God’s sake, give the power of decision-making to the lowest level of your organization. Be rational in determining exactly how “lowest-level decision making” works, but know that no matter how you do it, it can’t be worse than the telephone game.

How to Drive off Your Most Talented People

I was hired to consult for a friend of mine. She was running HR for a publicly traded company and wanted my help to figure out why they were losing their most talented people. I did the research and found the answer: and the man cutting my check was not going to like it.

I had to look the president of the company dead in the eyes and tell him that he was the problem.

The president had created a culture where people only told him what he wanted to hear, and so the middle managers were not passing along vital information to him.

Whether their company was going through good times or bad times, some of the managers at my friend’s company had spent decades keeping information from their president. By not valuing candor, and by rewarding people for withholding information, the president had created an unnecessary layer in his management, one that had driven off some of the most talented people in his company.

As a leader, it’s your obligation to create a culture that encourages the free flow of information between levels. Otherwise, you’ll either be caught in an endless game of telephone interpretation, or you’ll find yourself losing your best people.


GUY PIERCE BELL

Over the past twenty-five years, Guy has led publicly held, equity backed, and privately owned businesses with a not-for-profit thrown in. In many cases Guy was hired to turn-around performance. Throughout his experiences, he has developed a deep understanding of the pointless discord between business and people. He is convinced business has the unique ability to change the world for good, but only if we choose to unlearn the dogma of limiting thoughts and behaviors. Success is easy. Sustainable success is hard. Part people – part systems. His success equation: when you get people right, you get business right. Guy teaches organizations and their leaders how to expand beyond their limiting beliefs into their full potential. Email. Website.


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Dealing with meetings you can’t stand; An interview with Dr. Rick Brinkman

Joined on the show today by Dr. Rick Brinkman, with Rick Brinkman Productions, and author of many books including Dealing With Meetings You Can’t Stand: Meet Less and Do More. Learn more here!


Notes and Discussion Guide from my conversation with Dr. Rick Brinkman:

Rick Brinkman
Dr. Rick Brinkman

1. After generations of complaining about meetings, why do we still not get how to make them productive?

2. “There are too many meetings; most of them shouldn’t exist.”

3. Four things to think about with regards to meetings: people, preparation, process, and time.

4. Rarely have people been trained to run a productive meeting…

5. “First thing to do is question the meetings existence…”

6. “From a typical meeting, we only remember 9% of it, and half of that is inaccurate.”

7. “Purpose and focus are the two keys to any successful meeting.”

8. “Important to generate a one sentence “bullet point” when someone suggests an idea, so that it is remembered (and accurate).

9. Dealing with introverts and extroverts in meetings.

10. How do you deal with the snipers, the people who ALWAYS disrupt a meeting?

11. There are positives and opportunities with meetings…

12. How to run a successful brainstorming session!


Find Dr. Rick Brinkman’s book here:


About Dr. Rick Brinkman:

Dr. Rick Brinkman is a leadership and communications expert who teaches Conscious Communication® for leadership, teamwork, customer service and effective meetings. Since 1987 he’s performed more than 4,000 programs in 17 countries, sharing his insights on human behavior and strategies for practical communication. He is known for Educating through Entertainment, using humor and storytelling to make the learning memorable. A popular keynote speaker, his clients range from the Astronaut Corps at NASA and the FBI to Merck, Adobe, the Federal Reserve, and IBM. His recent book is Dealing With Meetings You Can’t Stand: Meet Less and Do More (McGraw Hill, 2017).


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A lesson in steadfastness from Winston Churchill; Essay by Todd Schnick

Winston Churchill, the newly installed British Prime Minister, at the dawn of World War II, said the following in a speech to the House of Commons, May, 1940:

“I would say to the House, as I said to those who have joined this government: ‘I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears, and sweat.’ We have before us an ordeal of the most grievous kind. We have before us many, many long months of struggle and of suffering. You ask, what is our policy? I can say: It is to wage war, by sea, land, and air, with all our might and with all the strength that God can give us; to wage war against a monstrous tyranny, never surpassed in the dark, lamentable catalogue of human crime.”

I love the singleness of purpose demonstrated here. There was only one focus, to wage war against the enemy. Nothing more, nothing less.

Inspiring.

And a critical lesson for all of us in the course of how we conduct our lives and business.
Fair to say that I have not always done this. And I suspect the same can be said of you.

Oh, it is easy to get distracted by new bells and whistles, by the endless demands of life around us, and by all the noise that surrounds us.

But that is not sustainable. You, like Churchill, have to have a singleness of purpose in what you want/need to achieve. And then, every strategic move you make has to be geared towards that purpose.

And this is a never ending process. It takes a lot of effort, focus and endless discipline to maintain singleness of purpose.

It isn’t easy. And that’s the message here.

You have to have courage here. Despite the evil that Britain faced at the dawn of WWII, there were many British politicians who wanted to stand in Churchill’s way (and why he was giving the speech cited above).

But he was steadfast in purpose. And the British people, and ultimately history, stood valiantly with him.

You have to be steadfast too.


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How to truly humanize business, and why; An interview with Guy Bell


Joined on the show by Guy Bell, an Executive Leader, speaker, and author of the recent book, Unlearning Leadership, Know Yourself – Grow Your Business. You can learn more here!


Notes and discussion guide from my conversation with Guy Bell:

1. “Humanizing business, seeing business from a different perspective.” We are truly in business for each other…

2. Systems and process are important in business, but not at the expense of our humanity in business.

3. Guy contends we are leaving half of the opportunity on the table when we practice standard “fear works” attitude from leaders.

4. Leaders need to reflect and wonder more…rather than deal in certainties.

5. How do you begin to make this mindset shift?

6. “I don’t know. What do you think?”

7. “Listen with your whole body.” Trusting your gut…

8. Knowing yourself, self-reflection, and alignment.

9. “Whole body wisdom.”

10. “Today’s solution is inevitably tomorrow’s failure.”

11. “You have to learn to unlearn.”

12. Free thinking — how to stay in that state of wonder.

13. Guy REJECTS the idea that “it’s not personal, it’s just business.”

14. We discuss the Four Rules of Flight (these apply to every business). Hint: shift the rules to enable creativity…shifting away from the typical punitive nature of most office rules.

15. You don’t have to lead a company, division, or even a team: These lessons apply to each individual. And it all starts with YOU….


Find Guy Bell’s book here:


About Guy Bell:

Guy seeks the truth buried under our troubling history of conformity. His ceaseless curiosity and passion for learning has led him down circuitous paths where he wrote and played music with the same sense of wonder he later applied to leading businesses.

He has developed a deep understanding of the pointless discord between business and people. He is convinced business has the unique ability to change the world for good, but only if we choose to unlearn the dogma of limiting thoughts and behaviors.

Guy teaches organizations and their leaders how to expand beyond their limiting beliefs into their full potential.


(the podcast on iTunes)





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