The Wise Leaders’ Way to Sustained Happiness, Growth, and Freedom

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Growth, We=All Who Matter
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It’s not market share, innovation, or strategy. It’s not earning per share, EBITDA, or another round of funding. It’s also not left-wing, right-wing, or centrist policies. Though it sounds like Sunday school treacle, we wise leaders know the way to sustained happiness, growth, and freedom. It is to help others achieve sustained happiness, growth, and freedom.



In your corner,


PS: We know it because we’ve experienced the joy and profit of helping others be in any way more joyful and more profitable. If you haven’t yet, trust and try it.


Today’s photo credit: FootMassagez Gift, Birthday, Surpise – Credits to via photopin (license)

Lack of Progress?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Will=Our inner game
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Lack of progress anywhere at work and in life feels bad not because there’s something broken but because we fear we can’t keep up or handle it.

But we can.


In your corner,


PS: No, it’s not those other people’s actions or attitudes. It’s us, the leaders.

PPS: If we pause for a minute and let the idea of growth or progress (or whatever we think is stopping our progress) just hit us, we’ll soon see that we can handle it. In fact, we can handle anything that may come up when it does and if it does.

Today’s photo credit: Russ Allison Loar Directions via photopin (license)

The Thing About Growth

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Growth, Leading
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This is the thing about growth: our businesses cannot reach beyond our ability to run them. Any lack of business growth is a good sign that we need to grow.

Luckily, we can measure and improve our leadership capacity. We need only a bit of self-trust to get going.

Learn and go grow, good leader.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: Xianyi Shen cc

Wearing Too Many Hats

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading
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In growing businesses, people have to wear many hats. This is doable when the company is new, smaller, and the volume of work is manageable. But wearing many hats soon becomes inefficient and ineffective. This is true because the volume of work in each hat approaches and even surpasses that of a full time role. It’s also true because switching between hats becomes harder; we are not just going from task to task within one job (which is hard enough) but from context to context across multiple jobs.

In the end, the clients, team, and business-as-a-whole suffer when we wear too many hats. Major signs of that suffering include revenue, profit, and customer-service pressures, overwhelm, an inability to invest, and an inability to grow even if some or all of the people are working hard.

Once we see that are wearing too many hats, we can build a business case for having others take on some of the work.


In your corner,


Today’s photo credit: Bear Mountain Picnic cc

Nothing More Powerful

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading
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Need someone to change for the better? Nothing is more powerful than believing that they can and telling them so.


In your corner,


PS: We can’t really fake this. They can tell when we’re just sayin’ it. But we don’t have to be 100% certain. Just mostly certain. I know you can find a way to be at least 51% sure they will succeed.


Today’s photo credit: Petra Bensted cc


The Hardest Part Is Remembering To Be It

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Will=Our inner game
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Why do you do what you do? Most of us will search but not have a solid answer for this. That is, not until we get to the very bottom of it, to what we all want.

Ultimately we all want to be free, happy, and growing. So we dedicate our time and energy to doing things at work and home to get ourselves there.

Yet freedom, happiness, and growth are our birthright. Action, time, and energy can’t bring us what we already are. But our attitudes or buzz can do a fine job of separating us from those innate qualities. Feeling bad, we dedicate time and energy to dive into action. We think it will help and it can’t.

To re-grant ourselves freedom, happiness, and growth, we need only get good at raising our buzz.

The hardest part is remembering to be it. When we do, we and the people we lead will benefit.


In your corner,


PS: Give yourself freedom, happiness, and growth. (Hint: it’s easy because it’s already there.)


Today’s photo credit: Adriano Gasparri cc


Orders of Magnitude Impact

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Strategy, What=Compelling Focus
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If we want to make a big impact, let’s get good at making a small impact then set a goal for one order of magnitude bigger.

Doing well at the smaller level earns us the cred to go bigger.

And setting a 1000% growth goal gives us the courage to make the changes needed to get there.


In your corner,


PS: Want to impact a billion people? Get good at impacting 100 million people. To do that, get good at impacting 10 million. On the way, you’ll need to get good serving 1 million. Etc.

PPS: We can of course choose to grow by 1%, 10%, or 100%. But the changes we need to make to have a 10x impact typically won’t happen with these smaller increments.


Today’s photo credit: Whatknot cc

four stages

The Four Stages

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Strategy
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Every organization, division, or program goes through four stages, in order:

  1. Conceive: find something compelling in out clients’ lives that needs fixing and commit to fixing it.
  2. Launch: figure out how to fix it for a few clients; keep trying it, learning, improving, and trying it again.
  3. Flow: find more clients who need the solution and offer it to them; get into a rhythm; add resources and systems to find more clients, manage the volume, and maintain service.
  4. Grow: find even more clients–often in related demographics and psychographics who have the same or similar problem to fix; trim or redeploy resources to maintain profit or stay within budget; keep improving how we fix the problem.

Ideally, our organizations go through the cycle over and over again–returning to Conceive from Grow–to adapt, innovate,  and remain meaningfully viable.

Of course, we can get stuck in any of the stages. Knowing which stage we are in and what stage comes next helps us figure out how to get unstuck.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: joiseyshowaa cc


Evolving Our Leadership

Posted Leave a commentPosted in Leading, Organizations, Success
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As our organizations grow, we must shift. If we hold too long to the methods that got us here, we will strangle our organizations. So we move away from being a task-master focused on getting it all done and toward being an executive.

To be executives (with or without title), we

  • Steward the creation and maintenance of a clear, compelling goal for the organization.
  • Build a win-win-centered team capable of achieving that goal.
  • Constantly inspire (authentically, not rah-rah) people; we show them where they fit and they contribute to that goal.
  • Insert just enough structure and process to make things easier and to support that goal.

In your corner,


PS: We must evolve before the company can.


Today’s photo credit: opacity via photopin cc