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Sunday, May 2nd, 2021

Why a Code of Conduct Strengthens Your Organization

Have you established a written Code of Conduct in your organization?

Our prescriptions for acceptable behavior are too vague. Get started now to spell it out more clearly to avoid that potentially colossal screwup.

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Have you heard this phrase before?

“Conduct unbecoming”

You may have heard this phrase from the clenched teeth of a military JAG officer about the same time you learned that “Crystal” is a perfectly apt response to “Are we clear?”

Throughout my service as a U.S. Army officer, this phrase was constantly refreshed as the highest standard to apply to the official actions of military officers.

How Do Organizations Define Acceptable Behavior?

Keep reading to learn more about how to define acceptable behavior

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Sunday, April 25th, 2021

Kick the Certified Jerks to the Curb

If you want to poison the well where you work, allow a Certified Jerk to roam free.

Mollycoddling is a pernicious and infectious organism you need to expel from your organization.

No Asshole Diagram

It’s easy to figure out how to deal with the Certified Jerk

That phrase is powerful in so many ways.

Smart people can often be prima donnas – I may have heard those accusations myself … the smart people part, of course, not the second (and when it has been used, it’s often disguised in less elegant terms) … but the brilliance of some people is often more blinding than enlightening.

Fortune magazine once asked Dr. Mehmet Oz about the best leadership advice he had ever received.

Keep reading so you don’t miss how to make the tough decisions

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Sunday, April 18th, 2021

Does Collaboration = Communication?

One of the most popular words in the business lexicon these days is collaboration.

Everyone’s eager to flatten the organization, get rid of hierarchy, eliminate command-and-control structures and collaborate across broad multifunctional teams.

Is There Anything Really New about Collaboration?

Do we really understand collaboration and why it’s become such a ubiquitous battle cry?

On most days, I think collaboration sounds more like the newest “sheep in communication clothing”, a word designed to give new life to the vexing concepts of “communication” that remain at the root of so many of our life’s challenges.

Both terms are meant to encourage people to share information, be transparent in decision-making and work in teams across functional groups without becoming isolated in silos that neither see nor speak with each other.

Yet, one of the unforeseen byproducts of this movement is a tendency to confuse collaboration with communication.

They’re not quite the same.

Collaboration is more about cooperation while communication refers to the exchange of ideas. Siblings, perhaps, but identical twins? Not so much.

Lack of Communication is at the Root of Failed Relationships

In general, communication trumps every other reason for relationship failure. If you doub that, crawl under the hood of most marriages … or consider many employer–employee relationships … even child-rearing experts emphasize the critical importance of communication skills.

Keep Reading for 3 Rules to Help You Get This Right …

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Sunday, April 11th, 2021

You’ve Got to Dream While You Eat.

There’s nothing more important … or more challenging … than the need to balance short-term results with long-range plans.

H ow is your organization focused? Are you encouraging long-range thinking or only what happens this week?

Do you have the Attention Span of a Mosquito?

How often are you distracted from a specific task … or distracted simply by knowing there are too many distractions?

When was the last time you pulled out that blank sheet of paper to THINK, you know, that old-fashioned approach to problem solving and the creative process?

Do you get why some people think Google is making us stupid?

All of these notions are but variations on a theme … our increasingly short-term focus.

Keep reading to make sure you have a longer term perspective

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Wednesday, April 7th, 2021

The Ante is Simple. Action!

Andy Grove, the former CEO of Intel, wrote the book, Only the Paranoid Survive, a testament to his relentless drive and devotion.

Two of the quotes attributed to him are a good way focus your energy … and to be reminded: Don’t Let Hope Become an Embalming Agent … and make sure ACTION IS the cornerstone of your success.

“You have to pretend you’re 100 percent sure. You have to take action; you can’t hesitate or hedge your bets. Anything less will condemn your efforts to failure.”

Question: What’s keep you from taking action to move forward?

How would you answer that? Let me know and we’ll build on that to expand our discussion of these ideas and concepts. If you’re active there, you can connect with me on LinkedIn. You can also find me on our Building a Business page on Facebook or on Twitter.

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Sunday, April 4th, 2021

Don’t Let Hope Become an Embalming Agent

Hope isn’t a strategy. Action IS!

For most of us, Spring is the time of the year when hope springs eternal. The sun is out … the flowers are blooming … and this year it seems we’re finally emerging from the worst pandemic in our lifetimes.

But maybe your initiatives are starting to drag?

The gum does kinda lose its flavor on the bedpost overnight, doesn’t it? We struggle to keep the engine stoked, but we don’t get far before we discover it’s much easier to start than to finish.

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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Wednesday, March 31st, 2021

The Power in a Blank Sheet of Paper

Brain Most of the time when we sit down to work, maybe in our favorite chair, we have a stack of papers or files and a list of some kind.

We then proceed to “work” as we’ve always defined it … plow through the stack and “get ‘er done”.

Try a different approach

This time, sit downt with blank sheet of paper, as I did again this morning. Nothing else.

Then, just sit back and noodle on the issues that are clogging your brain and keeping you up at night. … with  NO preconceived notions about them. Remember, you paper is blank so far.

You’ll be amazed at how your mind starts to do it’s favorite thing … and the thing it does best … adding some intellectual firepower to solving problems.

Give your brain some space to work

Our brain is not really that good at filing, sorting, recording and remembering what we need at the precise moment we need it. Continue Reading…

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Sunday, March 28th, 2021

Not enough resources … or Not Resourceful?

Resourcefulness has nothing to do with access to resources.

W e have more resources than ever before. That’s not what makes us resourceful.

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Early this morning, I headed to a favorite place just down the street to bring home a couple of lattes for my wife and me.

I think Jefferson or Franklin … or maybe all of our forefathers  … was looking down at that moment, shaking their heads in wonder.

I’m pretty sure they looked a little disgusted at our (my?) lack of self-sufficiency.

Would You Work This Hard for a Cup of Coffee?

Our ancestors would have awakened in woolen underwear, stepped onto a cold wooden or dirt floor, and would have gone outside to chop some wood to start a fire in the cook stove or build a campfire with a few nearby rocks.

Don’t mistake resources for resourcefulness. Keep reading ….

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