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Do First Things First

One of our biggest battles these days is to keep our head above the water line … not drowning in the tsunami of endless inputs that flood our inbox.

Sure, we need a trusted system to manage it all … but we also need to spend enough time to focus on what really needs to get done.

What is your unique contribution? What is it that only you can do? What will move the needle and really make a difference?

Today, give it a try. Intensely focus on doing first things first. Just that process alone will do wonders.

If you do that, you’ll likely discover that no one will miss the parts you didn’t do at all.

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Lose $1Million in 1 Day – and Still Become a Champion

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Focus. Focus. Focus.

I never thought that Rory McIlroy, a PGA golfer, would be the subject any article I ever wrote, least of all 2 of them.

What a difference a few years makes!

When I wrote about the Magic of True Grit, Rory appeared in an ignominious way.

What do you do when you totally screw up?

In 2011, Rory entered the final day of the Masters Tournament with a 4 stroke lead … and watched it quickly evaporate as his game imploded.

He shot 80 on that final day, the worst score of anyone playing on Sunday. He finished 10 strokes behind the winner, a Masters rookie, Charl Schwartzel.

(The Masters tournament doesn’t like to talk about such crass subjects as money … but the one day cost of that catastrophe to Rory WAS OVER  $1.3 MILLION!)

He was heartbroken over his performance that day, but held his head high with these words: Continue reading to see the Big Change …

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The 7 Qualities You Need to Get Your Company on the Medal Stand

What does it take to get on the Medal Stand and out of the Grandstands?

Jessica Long. One of the most decorated Paralympic athletes in history.

She’s won 17 Olympic medals. 12 of them are gold.

She holds 13 world records.

She’s been Sports Woman of the Year twice.

She’s obviously a remarkable swimmer.

She did all of it after having the lower part of both legs amputated when she was 18 months old.

Jessica Long’s drive, devotion and discipline are unquestioned.   Her determination is boundless. (NBC produced an in-depth look at her life you can find here.)

Is all of that enough? If you had each of those characteristics in immeasurable quantity, would it be enough to make you an Olympian?

Is drive, devotion and discipline enough?

Probably not.

Keep reading and download the 7 Olympic Qualities checklist …

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If You Stop Asking these 10 Questions, You’re Toast

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Do NOT Stop Asking These 10 Questions

Several years ago, I wrote about whether we needed another checklist of the 10 Stupid Things I can’t stop doing ..or the Top 5 things I need to do before I brush my teeth (really, nothing, do that first … please).

I ran across it recently and re-read the article by Marc Kramer entitled, The 10 Questions You Should Never Stop Asking.

What about … WHAT ONLY YOU CAN DO?

As an experienced leadership coach leading a group of CEOs as well as a separate group of senior executives, I’m constantly reminding leaders to focus more intensely on what only you can do.

You’ll need to register to read Continue reading about this powerhouse article

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Hope is powerful but don’t let it become an embalming agent. Get moving.

Hope is Not a Strategy. Action is.

Hope isn’t a strategy. Action IS!

For most of us, this is the time of the year when hope springs eternal.
We’re revved up for an exciting new year, determined to change all of the things that didn’t work last year so we can pound the ball out of the park in 2014.

Nothing wrong with any of that.

Commitment, momentum, focus … these are the energies that will fuel our engine and help us jumpstart 2014 with the vigor and rigor that we need to make this year the most successful ever.

Are your initiatives starting to drag just a bit?

The gum does kinda lose its flavor on the bedpost overnight, doesn’t it?

We don’t get far into the new year before we discover that it’s much easier to start than to finish.

We struggle to keep the engine stoked with the same energy that propelled us into the New Year.

We begin to feel some of the air already coming out of the tires, and begin to wonder … “where did that new-found energy go”?

What’s that whimpering sound?

It comes back to that whimpering sound of “hope springs eternal.”

Read why Hope is a poor excuse for a strategy….

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What do Magicians, Grifters and Financial Legerdemain Have in Common?

It's the money

Magicians are pretty amazing, aren’t they?

They do stuff right in front of our eyes

… we’re on the edge of our seats …

expecting the unexpected …

and even then we have no idea how they just did what they did.

Somehow, he gets you to look one way while he’s doing something else right in front of you … and you completely miss it.

Watch Apollo Robbins, the best pickpocket it in the world, and you’ll see exactly what I mean.

Financial Legerdemain: A Magician’s Trick by any other name

I’ve always loved the term, “legerdemain”. The shorthand definition is “sleight of hand”, kind of “now you see it, now you don’t”. Like Apollo.

But when it’s applied to financial metrics, with an unstated intention of distracting you from focusing on the right thing, it’s a particularly destructive force.

It’s the worst if you turn it on yourself … and end up deceiving yourself about what performance metrics really count. Read the entire article to avoid a fool’s errand ….

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If you don’t have any shadows, you’re not standing in the light.

~ Lady Gaga

You can interpret this in many ways … but for me, it means that it’s okay if some things don’t go well or that you make mistakes.

If you are in the Spotlight of Leadership, whether as an artist or a business leader, you will only cast a shadow if you let the light shine upon you and are willing to be authentic and imperfect.

So, get out there!

Stand under the hot lights.

Stand upright.

Face the music.

Do your best.

Belt it out … and let the shadows fall.

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