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Leadership LibraryI have written more than 300 articles about Leadership, about 1/3 of which have been published by the SF affiliate of the New York Times. You can focus here on specific issues including Communication, Compensation, Governance, Entrepreneurship, Performance, Planning, and Recruiting

Please check out the Featured Articles from our Leadership Library to get you started.

Perfection is the Enemy of Good … and of Done.

If you’re a recovering perfectionist like me, you may have learned by now that perfection can actually be the enemy of good.

It’s also the enemy of Done … if you’re letting your desire for perfection get in the way of getting something done NOW and continuing to improve it going forward.

The same approach applies to your goals for 2018. Don’t shoot for perfection.

Shoot for DONE and keep strengthening your goals over time.

{{ subscriber.first_name }}, do  you want to make that approach part of your 2018 plan?

If so, why don’t you join me for a free webinar with my colleague, Michael Hyatt, entitled Navigate Your Way to Success in 2018: 5 Blunders That Can Shipwreck Your Goals (And How to Avoid Them).

I’ll be right there with you, taking notes to do what I can to make 2018 the Best Year Ever.

I hope you’ll join me.

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Don’t Let This Be Your Fallback Plan in 2018

As you formulate your goals for 2018, don’t let this become your fallback plan.

Go for it. Aim at that Big Hairy Audacious Goal (“BHAG” in the parlance of Jim Collins of Good to Great fame).

What have you got to lose?

While you’re at it, don’t miss out on the free quiz to help you evaluate what you’d like to achieve in 2018 in all areas of your life. It expires on Tuesday.

“The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark.” ~Michelangelo

You can easily add your comment below, or by visiting our Facebook Page or @Exkalibur on Twitter. I visit them every day and look forward to discussing these ideas and concepts with you.

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5 Tips from Winston Churchill to Overcome Any Storm

Are you having a bad day … maybe a bad week … even a few bad weeks in a row?

Could you handle it if you had to slog your way through a seemingly unending storm?

How Do You Achieve Victory Against Insurmountable Odds?

Yesterday, November 30, Winston Churchill would have been 143 years old. He died in 1965 but few modern historical figures are as legendary as Churchill.

It made me think on his countless pearls of wisdom I’ve enjoyed over the years. Some poignant, some funny, some rather cutting. I’ve sprinkled a few throughout for your enjoyment and amusement.

It also reminded me that in the face of life’s challenges, we CAN keep on getting on … and overcome them even when they seem stretched endlessly in front of us.

What Does the Future Hold?

The truth is incontrovertible. Panic may resent it. Ignorance may deride it. Malice may destroy it … but there it is. ~ Winston Churchill

The future is never clear enough and there are always unbidden passengers getting on the train … economic turmoil, political stalemate, terrorism, the wrath of Mother Nature … it’s a pretty long list.

“Let us go into the storm … and through the storm,” said Winston Churchill as he prepared England to confront the Nazi regime in World War II.

I thought this might be a touch of hyperbole as we face life’s challenges, but then I recalled that Churchill’s odyssey raged for five years, not just a day or a week.

Imagine Churchill, FDR and others slogging for five dreadful years through the greatest threat to civilization we have known.

How do we carry on the fight over a longer period?

Keep reading to learn how to overcome the Resistance …

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Do You Thrive on Paranoia? If Not, Why Not? If So … Then What?

Concepts about paranoia abound. Ask Andy Grove, Jim Collins, Muhtar Kent and me.

By any name, change is healthy, but it means you’ll have to dropkick some of the things you’re already doing … even if you’re in love with them.

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A rose is a rose is a tulip? No, that’s not right. A rose is a rose is … well, by any other name, I think it’s still a rose. Right?

We’re pretty famous in this country for euphemisms, aren’t we, particularly for unwelcome issues.

Eternal rest.

Cement shoes.

Adult entertainment … I think you catch my drift.

How would you describe the Entrepreneurial Mentality?

There are also a lot of ways that the entrepreneurial mentality has been described.

We first read about “constructive paranoia,” a phrase popularized by Andy Grove, the former CEO of Intel in his book, Only the Paranoid Survive.

It’s hard to argue with his mantra:

Keep reading to understand the concept of Destructive Enrichment

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The Two Principles You Need to Live a Life of Harmony

Does this get you thinking: Today is the Day that Tomorrow was Yesterday?

D o you live your life like Tomorrow Never Comes? If you don’t make the best of today, what else is left?

Silhouette of happy father and son at sunset beach

It’s Time to Live a Life of Harmony

In addition to living life today and not waiting for the promises of tomorrow, I’m kicking the concept of a “balanced life” to the curb.

Instead, I’m looking for a Life of Harmony, which is a blend of two key principles:

  • A blend of work, home, friends and community, and
  • A commitment to live for today, not for the tomorrow that never comes.

As you prepare for your Best Year Ever in 2018, both of these principles must be present to achieve a Life of Harmony.

Principle 1: The Concept of a Balanced Life is Over

The concept of a balanced life is kaput because it’s based on the outdated assumption that there is a bright line between home and work.

But there really isn’t, is there?

With today’s technology … with both spouses working and sharing home and parenting duties … the line between work and home is fuzzy at best:

  • You have the capability to get work done when and where you want,
  • You don’t want to miss your kids’ soccer games or piano recitals,
  • You may prefer to put your kids to bed and work afterward, and
  • You want a life where all of your interests and needs are in “harmony”.

Once you embrace that concept, you can join me and kick that *balanced life* concept out the door.

Principle 2: Life is Short and Unpredictable

When death strikes close to home, this lesson rears its ugly head yet again.

Over the Christmas holidays several years ago, we lost my wife’s only and younger brother to a sudden and expected infection that even the greatest doctors at UCSF could not overcome.

Reflecting on that 19 day ordeal from his admission to the ICU until his Celebration of Life service, is a powerful lesson for all of us as we confront our mortality.

None of us had any idea this day was coming. He was relatively young at 65, healthy throughout his life and was planning to retire at the first of the year … with many plans that he never realized.

The acclaimed author, Sidney Sheldon, once wrote a book entitled, Tomorrow Never Comes.

It summarizes what we already know:

What was tomorrow only yesterday is now TODAY.

Continue reading for the inspiration to kickstart your life

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Are You Willing to Accept Defeat? If Not, What Will You Do To Prevent It?

If you’re like most, you love playing the game far more than you like preparing to play … in the sports world, better known as practice.

In business, as in sports, you’ve learned … courtesy of the school of hard knocks … that your success in the game is closely intertwined with how well you’re prepared to play it … how hard you have practiced.

 

On the eve of 2018, now is a great time to get prepared. There will be unexpected speed bumps to be sure, but having a plan is your greatest asset and advantage.

Summon the will to prepare … a commitment to getting ready with the same passion as you play the game … and you’ll set yourself up for the Best Year Ever.

You can easily add your comment below, or by visiting our Facebook Page or @Exkalibur on Twitter. I visit them every day and look forward to discussing these ideas and concepts with you.

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Who, me? I need to make a change? No, you’re the one who needs change. What?

There is at least One Irrefutable and Universal Truth

I t’s a pretty rare day when you don’t think about changing someone else, isn’t it?

If you could just get other people to change, to do things your way, to see the path as you do ….

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You may not know Tom Allender, but you’d be lucky if you did.

Several years ago, my wife mentioned that Tom had a reputation as a very insightful and heartfelt speaker and was appearing at the local parish in a few weeks to talk about relationships.

I was a little skeptical of getting “preached to” about relationships, but my wife was eager to attend, so I agreed to join her.

He was terrific and wasn’t at all “preachy” … and as he got started, you could see couples beginning to squirm, turning to each other and whispering versions of …

“How did he know that [about us]?”

… or “Have you already talked to him?” …

“I didn’t see him peeking in our window.” ….

What is that One Universal Truth?

It quickly became clear he could pinpoint the universality of the many things we face in our relationships with each other.

What I distinctly remember is his story about the married man who approached him one day to ask about an upcoming couples’ retreat:

Keep reading to learn a simple approach to change your life …

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Great. Your 2018 Plan is Finished. Now What?

Finishing your 2018 plan feels great … but if you’re not working it with intense and relentless focus, it’s DOA. Try these  7 Steps to Annual Plan Success.

The harsh reality is that the so-called strategy formulation part is important … and as challenging as it may be, it’s by far the easiest.

For some reason, it just won’t implement itself.

 

Your 2018 Plan is just the Starting Line

In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable. ~Dwight Eisenhower

I know you’ve seen this quote before … because I use it like they vote in Chicago – regularly and often.

Why?

Because it captures the essence of the planning activity that so many executives miss. That includes the CEOs and senior executives who complain that the exercise of creating an annual plan is basically … worthless.

They usually say something like,

“ It’s a waste of time to create a plan every year … and a budget and a forecast to go with it … because the future is unpredictable and it never turns out the way we plan it anyway.”

Military strategist Helmuth von Moltke is famously known for this simple quote in response:

“No battle plan survives contact with the enemy.”

What’s your experience?

Keep reading so you don’t miss the 6-Pack of Annual Plan Success

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