Tell, Tell, Tell, Yell!

Posted Leave a commentPosted in We=All Who Matter
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Tell, tell, tell, yell. (To which we all respond with hide, fight, complain, and deflect.)

Easy but not so effective, is it? What does work?

Build relationship and trust constantly. Agree to argue the points not the personalities. Agree on the why and outcomes before the how, when, and who details. Make sure everyone is heard. Reach true consensus where we all may not agree but we understand and will 100% support it. Agree to be held to account. Hold each other to account.

Hard? You bet. Effective? Whoa, yeah.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: fpdd! 39 via photopin (license)

Why Not?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Do=Natural flow of action, Will=Our inner game
Reading time: 1

What if we give all of our current projects a score? Things that we love doing, that serve us well, that have us feeling great and connected to our purpose get a 10. We give a 1 to things that we hate doing, that drain us, and that have no discernible purpose. And we give other things a score in between.

What would be your average score? 

What if you chose to work on nothing less than an 11?

After all, why not?


In your corner,


PS: If you said something, “Yeah, but, there are some things I just hafta do…,” consider reframing it into a desired outcome. Example: “Yeah, but, I hafta do my accounting…” becomes, “I choose to do this because I love feeling on top of my finances.”


Today’s photo credit: Peter Reed cc

Nothing Is As Powerful As…

Posted Leave a commentPosted in What=Compelling Focus, Will=Our inner game
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They say that nothing is as powerful as an idea whose time has come. Actually, there is one thing more powerful: a person who has committed herself or himself to a clear, compelling outcome. Committed means, “This will happen. It won’t happen through bull-headedness, force,  or hope. There may be obstacles but no excuses. I will simply see to it, seeing it through until it’s done.” This tends to work really well for things we want.

What do you want, dear leader?


In your corner,


PS: Funny, the original quote is, “On résiste à l’invasion des armées; on ne résiste pas à l’invasion des idées.” – Victor Hugo. “We can resist army invasions but not idea invasions.”


Today’s photo credit: bitslammer cc

TAP: The Accountability Process

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Do=Natural flow of action, Leading, We=All Who Matter
Reading time: 3 min.

Holding each other accountable is a critical part of working well together. All leaders must master this. Many struggle to get others to follow through. But with TAP (The Accountability Process), it’s really straightforward. There are two main steps:

  1. Agree on who will do what by when.
  2. Whoever has agreed to accomplish something gets it done by the agreed time and date.

Simple, right?


In your corner,


PS: What do you mean, “Too simple,”?

PPS: Oh. Yes. That.

PPPS: So, a few more steps will help.

When things go wrong

  1. If you realize that you can’t get a task done by the agreed time and date, alert ASAP the people expecting the task and renegotiate a new “what by when.”
  2. If you realize that you don’t know how to get the promised task done, go ask for help ASAP. Renegotiate a new “what by when” if necessary.
  3. If a task you are expecting doesn’t get done on time, say so. Quickly, directly, and matter-of-factly point out to the person who committed to do the task that it isn’t complete on time. Renegotiate a new “what by when.”
  4. If a task you are expecting doesn’t get done well, say so. Quickly, directly, and matter-of-factly point out to the person who did the task that it is not done well enough. Describe what specifically you use to judge quality. Train if necessary. Renegotiate a new “what by when.”
  5. If the original task was to create a draft of something and you find it is lacking something, (d) above doesn’t apply. It’s a draft. Edit, teach, and make a new TAP request for the next draft.

Other tips

  • For project or larger tasks, agree on milestones. Treat each milestone its own TAP commitment.
  • Allow people to say no. When we make a request for a “what by when,” the others get to say, “Yes,” “No,” or “Let’s negotiate.” If they say, “No,” ask them to negotiate something that works for you both. Without letting them say, “No,” we are taking over their responsibility to commit and follow through.
  • Allow people to set their own “by when” deadlines. Negotiate these deadlines only if extenuating circumstances make their deadlines impractical or unhelpful.
  • Notice that TAP goes every direction: boss to employee, employee to boss, peer to peer, employee to client, client to employee, etc.


In your corner, really,



Today’s photo credit: bill lapp cc

We Don’t Dare Dictate Deadlines

Posted 2 CommentsPosted in Leading
Reading time: 1

Want to have more wasted effort, delays, and incomplete work? All we have to do is dictate deadlines and watch everyone’s productivity come crashing down. When we dictate deadlines, we are asking for resistance, unsustainable heroism, and mistakes.

We aren’t the experts in their work. They are. We are not committing to a deadline. They are. We can’t create in them the drive to accomplish. Only they can.

“By when can you get this done? At which milestones will you let me know your progress? How shall we proceed if things get off schedule? How can I support you in getting this done by that date?”

Their job is to set and meet the deadlines. Our job is to inform them of extenuating circumstances so they can properly plan and to hold them accountable.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: Cindy Schultz cc

Picking a Dream

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Career, What=Compelling Focus
Reading time: 1

Achieving a dream requires that we first commit whole-heartedly to that dream.

But–oh–we hesitate. We’re afraid that if we pick one dream we’ll either mess it up or miss out on other, better ones that we just don’t know about yet. Hesitation leads to lack of commitment which leads to dreams unfulfilled. Bleah!

Here’s the solution: commit anyway. No commitment to a dream is cast in iron. We can add to it and modify it as we go. Should we stumble or see a better path, we can always course-correct.

Pick and go!


In your corner,


PS: If any dream we are considering promises to lead us somewhere delightful, then that’s the one to commit to.


Today’s photo credit: Lisa Ruokis cc


Fear of Making the Wrong Choice

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Strategy, Sweetspot, What=Compelling Focus
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Fear of making the wrong choice is one reason we may not commit to a career, market niche, or organizational strategy. “What if I/we choose this option and it’s not quite right? What if I/we choose this one and then learn of a better one? After all the investment in this one, I/we couldn’t go back.”

The antidote to this fear is to find our (or our organization’s) SweetSpot. From our SweetSpot we can generate many possible strategies, careers, and niches that would be delightful, meaningful, rewarding, and satisfying. This is true because, by definition, our SweetSpot (personal or organizational) is the set of criteria for having a delightful, meaningful, rewarding, and satisfying career, niche, or strategy.

When we choose something that matches our SweetSpot, we will be happy. Pick one and go.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: Flóra Soós cc


The Guilty, Dark Side of Goals

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Do=Natural flow of action
Reading time: 1

Goals help. We know that setting a goal focuses our efforts and greatly increases the chances of getting our desired outcomes.

But goals have a guilty, dark side.

Because we know that day-to-day troubles and whims can distract us, we commit to achieving our goals, no matter what. We then proceed to turn our goals into realities.

Something happens along the way, though. Having started work on the goals and moving closer to them, we can see things much more clearly than when we had first set the goals. We have learned. And we often realize that we need to reset our goals. But we feel bound by our original commitments. This is the guilty, dark side of goals.

Rigidly holding onto a goal that no longer makes sense is a great way to discourage and disengage all involved. No one wants to achieve a goal that has lost its meaning.

As long as we aren’t making excuses, we get to update goals as often as we want.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: via photopin cc