Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

You can’t truly lead someone unless you truly care about them first.

Insecure people have no capacity to be humble. #Humility comes from knowing who you are. – @JeremieKubicek

“Make a decision to live a daily lifestyle of personal and developmental growth.” – @JohnCMaxwell

You only go from Ordinary to Extraordinary by small differences PRACTICED DAILY!

“Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom.” – Thomas Jefferson

 

I love the man that can smile in trouble, that can gather strength from distress and grow brave by reflection. (Thomas Paine)

“I’m so optimist I’d go after Moby Dick in a rowboat & take tartar sauce with me” Zig Zigler

I’m “too busy” to do X is code for X is not a priority for me.

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Last night I watched the latest hot movie, The Avengers. As I reflected on the movie’s themes I was struck by the great lessons the movie had concerning teamwork and leading teams.

In the movie you have an all-star cast of heroes who are pitted against villains from another world. The leader has a vision to put together a “Dream Team” of these super heroes to protect the earth against attacks from other worlds. His dream of being successful is almost thwarted due to his inability at the outset to take all these highly successful individuals and pull them together in unity as a team. Each of their individual agendas, personalities and weaknesses almost sabotages the effort to hold off the inevitable doom from these alien adversaries.

Here is a list of some of the super heroes weaknesses that was inhibiting the formation of the Super Hero Dream Team:

Ironman-self-absorbed: his self-centeredness leads him to not be a very willing participant in the whole “team” concept. Very much a lone ranger who likes to do things according to his own ideas, desire and beliefs. He has a great deal of difficulty subduing this characteristic to function well on the team.

Do you have a team member who has not embraced the “team” concept due to an arrogance that isolates him from the rest of the team and robs the team of getting the great contributions he could contribute?

Hulk-ill-tempered: as we know his temper leads to all kinds of destructive actions that leave a wake of rubble behind him. He has to go to great lengths not to allow himself to be provoked into anger.

Do you know someone whose temper is a disruptive force on your team?

Captain America-communications issues: due to being in a frozen sleep for decades of years he lacked understanding the modern day language being used by his team and often struggled to understand what was being said.

Does your team have communication issues for one reason or another that is preventing your team from operating at a higher level?

Thor-family issues: emotional ties to the villan who is his brother, his brother was the evil villain who was seeking to set up his kingdom on earth and have everyone bow down to him, there are some pivotal moments when he struggles with the emotional side of this being his brother and not wanting to fight him, he still had hopes he could convince him to turn from his evil ways.

Do you have team members who are struggling with some personal issues that are holding them back from being top performers and contributing greatness to your team? How could you help them overcome those issues?

Black Widow-loyalty issues: a former spy who struggles with loyalty issues, she is a former spy who did not hold loyalty in high regard. She sold her services to the highest bidder and had difficulty showing devotion to the cause at the outset.

Do you have team members who don’t display loyalty and devotion to the team’s vision? How do you address that?

Nick Furry (Leader of  S. H. I. E. L. D.) authenticity issues:  Struggles with authenticity issues which lead to a lack of trust from his proposed team members. He held back information from his team and developed a lack of trust from the team members that he almost did not overcome.

As a leader do your people trust you? If not, why? How can you become more authentic as a leader and build a high level of trust in your organization?

Lessons

1. Great talent does not always equal great teams.

2. Individual weaknesses can hamper or even destroy team chemistry and effectiveness.

3. Great leaders unify great talents to make great teams.

4. Individual aspirations have to be yielded for the greater good of the team in order to achieve maximum effectiveness and truly create a Dream Team.

5. There is no room for arrogance on your team if you hope to achieve maximum effectiveness.

6. Without unity your team’s effectiveness is great reduced, if not destroyed.

7. When a team is unified your effectiveness is multiplied.

8. Successful teams have loyal team members.

9. Successful leaders of highly successful teams develop and cultivate a culture of mutual trust.

10. Personal issues can impact a team’s performance in negative ways and cause very disruptive situations if not addressed and handled correctly.

 

I have recently read a number of blog posts and book authors who contend that not everyone is a leader. I disagree with those assertions. While I do agree that not all of us will have what it takes to be a CEO or tackle some other high level executive post in our lifetimes. However that does not exclude us from being leaders in our own circle of influence on a daily basis.

John Maxwell defines leadership as follows:

Leadership =Influence

If we use this as our core definition for leadership then all of us fit into the category of a leader. Each of us exerts influence over other people in our lives on a regular basis.

Look at this list of influencers that impact our lives daily:

  • A parent influences their children.
  • A spouse influences their spouse.
  • Children often influence their parents.
  • A neighbor influences a neighbor on where to shop for the best deal on lawn care, groceries, hair stylist etc…
  • A co-worker influences another co-worker on where to eat lunch, get their dry cleaning done, what concert to go to etc…
  • A waitress influences you on what to eat that day by telling you the great specials that are available or what are the local favorites.
  • Your handy-man influences you on some needed repairs to your house.
  • Your mechanic influences you on some needed work so your car doesn’t break down.
  • Your hair stylist influences you on your new hair cut style.
I think you get the point, and this list could go on and on. Make up your own list and take a moment to recognize all the people who exert influence over you in the course of a day. Once you do this you will realize that leadership is alive and well in many forms all around us all day.
Are you a leader? I think we all have to answer yes and realize each of us has leadership roles and responsibilities in our lives and that we owe it to ourselves and those we exert influence over to work at being better at some of the most basic leadership skills.
While you might not aspire to be a CEO I would hope you aspire to be a better parent, spouse, friend, neighbor, co-worker…you fill in the blank________.
Each of us can grow in our leadership and use our improved skills to better impact our circle of influence in a more positive and effective manner.
Andy Stanley states that:
“Leadership is a stewardship, it is temporary and you are accountable!”
So let’s all commit to learning to lead more effectively in the days ahead.
Are you ready to learn how to lead?


Dave Ramsey
Personal money-management expert, national radio personality, and best-selling author of The Total Money Makeover

 As a leader you have the responsibility to serve those you lead!

  • 300 people employed at his company.
  • Not boss of those people I am the servant of all those people.
  • Businesses are operated by people who know how to serve their people, customers and communities!

What are the principles that caused us to grow as a business? 

5 Keys things to enable us to win

1. People Matter: This the DNA of our organization. This has to be how you live. 

  • Your customers are people.
  • Your customers matter, they are people, they have sickness, they are not just a place to extract money from!
  • Your team members are people. 
  • Your team matters, they are not just units of production.
  • In many companies their people have  become a commodity.
  • Companies wonder why their why they have people who are not loyal to them. It is because you are not loyal to them.
  • Loyalty breeds loyalty. Be loyal to your people.
  • Love your competitors, treat them well and with respect.

2. An Incredible, Excellent Team Matters:  Our organization is a place where excellence matters.

Of course our company is made up of nice people we fired all the jerks!

  • We have won six years in a row in Nashville  an award as the best place to work for in Nashville.
  • Start the hiring process by prayer, send us the right person, keep your crazy people away.
  • Make sure you really get to know your people during the recruitment process. It takes longer but it is worth it in the long run. 
  • We will fire you for gossip, it is destructive. You must hand your negatives up, never down. I will warn you once,  fire you second time. (See more on this here: The Five Enemies of Unity)
  • As a leader you need to be intentional about the culture you cultivate in your organization.

3. Slow and Steady Matters: This wins the race!

  • You must be consistent.
  • You must have a no quit attitude.
  • He who is impulsive imparts folly.
  • Don’t have business ADD, can’t run after everything that is shiny.
  • Must keep focus.
  • Asked a billionaire what is key to your success?  He reads the story of  the tortoise and the hare, tortoise always win! 
  • Building a successful business is a crock pot process.
  • Take your time!
  • I have worked my butt off for 15 years and now I am overnight success!

4. Financial Principles Matter: You must run business with a budget. You spend less than you take in. You must get out of debt.

  • Slow down, run your business on less than it takes in, operate with margin.
  • Stay out of debt.
  • Debt increase risk and this will maximize the impact of your mistakes.
  • When everything is going good even stupid looks good.
  • Be generous!
  • Be generous and giving to your community.
  • Be generous to your team.
  • Be generous with customers. 
  • You need to have moral component to your business. 
  • By having a generous culture you team will act differently and function at a higher level.
  • When you have generous spirit it sparks creativity among your team members.

5. A higher calling matters: When you play for something bigger than you, you will fight harder, work harder, and achieve more.

  • Define your higher calling.
  • Why do you do what you do?
  • What gives you meaning and purpose?

Leave an amazing legacy!

  • How have Cathy family turned chicken into a higher calling?
  • Their on mission that is bigger than chicken!
  • They are shaping lives of teenagers all over country.
  • What you do for a living has got to be worth getting up every morning.
  • It has to energize you to go busting through all the walls.
  • You won’t do all it takes if you don’t have a higher calling.
  • Your organization must understand the Why? 
  • You better know what your why is and your team better know what your why is.
  • Got to have something that you are aiming at.
  • How cool would it be that you created thousands of millionaires like Microsoft did. Impacted so many lives in such a big way. Changed their family tree forever. 
  • Studying family businesses and how they transition from generation to generation.
  • One part of my higher calling is leaving legacy of those I have had a part in developing and sending them on their way to achieve bigger and better things. To observe them out there when they are doing their own thing, achieving great things on their own. That is rewarding to reflect back on the fact I had some part in their success. 
  • What will your legacy be?
  • What will the dash on your tombstone represent?
  • I am all about making my dash count for as much as possible by leaving a legacy that I can be proud of.

 

Marcus Buckingham

  • Standout

Michael Hyatt

  • Platform: Get Noticed in a Noisy World

Patrick Lencioni

  • The Advantage

Bernie Marcus

  • Built from Scratch

Urban Meyer

  • Urban’s Way: Urban Meyer, the Florida Gators, and His Plan to Win

Mark Sanborn

  • Up, Down, or Sideways

Andy Stanley

  • Enemies of the Heart
  • The Principle of the Path
  • When Work and Family Collide

Soledad O’Brien

  • The Next Big Story: My Journey Through the Land of Possibilities

Truett Cathy

  • Wealth, Is It Worth It?

Sheena Iyengar

  • The Art of Choosing

Laura Ling

  • Somewhere Inside: One Sister’s Captivity North Korea and the Other’s Fight to Bring Her Home

John Maxwell

  • The Five Levels of Leadership
  • The 360 Degree Leader

Tim Tebow

  • Through My Eyes

General Hugh Shelton

  • Without Hesitation: The Odyssey of an American Warrior

Jeremie Kubicek

  • Leadership is Dead/Making Leadership Come Alive
  • Humble for President

Soledad O’Brien
Anchor and Special Correspondent for CNN

 

  • Dig into tough conversations, this is leadership, dig into the stories

Give voice to everyone, this is leadership, this not just a good thing, it is critical to our success!

  • Once you realize what you were called to do do it as if God himself ordained it for you to do!
  • Dr. King was a regular man doing what he saw needed to be done.
  • When you examine the writings and speeches of Martin Luther King Jr. you get to see what words he chose, he was a man who chose his words very carefully.
  • He was a regular man who was present when called to duty.
  • He was inspired by a moment and stepped up.
  • He wanted to know how men raise up after being knocked down
  • He decided to lead, to take a stand, to take a position others might now agree with and yet he decides to stand up anyway.
  • Leadership is about justice, to stand up for others for whose voices are not heard
  • Martin Luther King Jr. delivered a message that made others uncomfortable
  • True leadership is about departing from the script as you know it. Leadership is about going off script, taking a different path.
  • True leadership requires blunt conversations.
  • True leadership takes time, it does not come in a moment. History making changes takes time but it will come!
  • Dr. King’s speech that is most popularly know as the “I have a Dream” was instead titled “Normalcy Never Again”
  • The speech was about standing up for marginalized people. 
  • When Dr. King used the words “I have a Dream” it was a result of an ad lib after hearing comments from the crowd shouting for him to tell them about his dream, he then turned over his written speech and went off script speaking from his heart.
  • When you tell stories about people who are marginalized they often become defacto leaders.
  • We are obligated to listen to others.
  • We can’t shut out the people we disagree with, that is not leadership, that is being an obstacle.
  • We must come together with those who we might disagree with.
  • Dr. King stated, “that a leader is not a searcher of conscious, but instead a molder of it, conscious ask the question is it right?”
  • You can become leaders by sticking to those tough questions.
  • Some leaders struggle to lead and motivate a team because they are stuck in what people think about them.
  • True leadership is getting people to talk about uncomfortable situations and having those blunt conversations

 

Marcus Buckingham

Strength strategist, best-selling author and researcher

Choices

Stand Out-His newest book 

  • Started out by discussing many of the choices he had made in his life concerning his career and how it unfolded over the years.
  • These choices I have made just felt right, felt authentic. 
Authenticity is your most precious commodity!
If you lose your own authenticity you have lost everything!
Leadership Development in the Age of the Algorithm
  • Every content deliverer, has to say to the customer:  Who are you?
  • Have you noticed the first question content providers ask today is: who are you?
  • Netflix gives you a movie quiz and as a result your home screen is different than mine.
  • NY Times, far right column is things you will be interested, your algorithm for their content.
  • Google, Amazon, Facebook all have your algorithm in place and that determines the book recommendations and ads you see on your home pages each day.

The only places we notice it now is where it is not at yet!

  • Leadership is idiosyncraticleadership does not fit into the competency models, that person does not exist in real life, those are only models, someone’s compilation of what an idea leader should and should not be, leadership just does not fit into that box!
  • Studied various companies to see what made them successful, what made them great at what they do (Evaluated companies such as Best Buy and Hampton Inn)
  • Discovered these companies had various leadership styles, and those leaders used different techniques to come up with excellent results. 
  • People often capture the technique but mess the concept of what the technique has captured. Many times companies try to roll out techniques across the entire organization without fully understanding the true reason for that techniques success. 
  • You must remember that you can teach any leader the right concepts like reflecting back when you find excellence happening in your organization, but this often gets confused with teaching the techniques instead.
  • Everyone got fixated on the “technique” being used and not on capturing excellence and reflecting it back to the people who are exhibiting the great behaviors that lead to the great results.
  • Many companies then create culture of rules for the techniques being used and totally nullify the effectiveness of the “technique” because it was being executed without an understanding of what actually made that work for that location.

Techniques of one leader are not easily transferred to the practices of another leader!
  • You have to pick your own algorithm.
  • What’s your edge as a leader, you particular competitive advantage?
  • If we understand this, we can teach you the proper techniques that fit your edge
The 9 Strength Roles
  • We measure you on 9 strength roles and you are defined by your top two.
  1. Advisor: What is the best thing to do? You are a practical, concrete thinker who is at your most powerful when reacting to and solving other people’s problems.
  2. Connector: you are always looking to see what is best in us, you are a catalyst, your power lies in your craving to bring two people or ideas together to make something bigger and better than it is now.
  3. Creators: what do I understand? I need time to process information, I don’t like surprises, I need quiet time, you make sense of the world, pulling it apart, seeing a better configuration and creating it.
  4. Equalizers: what is the right thing  to do, you want to make things right, you see world as moral commitments, you do what you say you are going to do, you are a level-headed person whose power comes from keeping the world in balance, ethically and practically.
  5. Influencer: always selling, everything about you is moving me from where I am to your agenda, you engage people directly and convince them to act. Your power is persuasion. 
  6. Pioneer-what’s new, what’s next, walk around corner and see for ourselves what is there, you see the world as a friendly place where, around every corner, good things will happen. Your power comes from your optimism in the face of uncertainty.
  7. Provider: No person gets left behind, you go one by one and ask each person, are you OK? You create an environment where I believe you care in genuine manner, this creates innovation and creativity. You sense other people’s feelings, and you feel compelled to recognize these feelings, give them a voice, and act on them.
  8. Stimulator: You ask how can I raise up the energy level in the room? You feel responsibility  for the emotional status in the room, you invigorate us. You are the host of other people’s emotions. You feel responsible for them, for turning them around, for elevating them.
  9. Teacher: how I learn? How can you learn? You see yourself as a work in progress, you see others as a work in progress as well. We are never done learning. You are thrilled by the potential you see in each person. Your power comes from learning how to unleash it.
  • When you study the best performers in a particular field you don’t necessarily find the same profiles in the top performers.
  • There is no perfect leadership profile, only perfect practices that fit your profile.

 

What is the greatest value you bring the team?

Steve Jobs example of how the 2nd time at Apple he was better version of himself, more persuasive, more effective, got fired from his own company first time around but was much more effective the second tenure.

How do you take what is unique about you and make it the most effective?

 

  • Situational Judgment Test is to determine which are your top two strength roles. The Stand Out test put you in different types of situations and ask what would you do? From this your top two strength roles are determined.
  • Your summary of your results will be a summary of what you would do, not based on what you see yourself as, or what you think you are, it is based on your behaviors.
Angela Ahrendts

Chief Executive Officer, Burberry

Choices

Comments from John Maxwell Interviewing Angela

  • She has been there 6 years and executed a very successful transformation of this company with more than 9000 associates globally.

How did this transformation happen?

  • I asked the question, How can we create the most modern brand?
  • We determined that trust is how we are going to transform company, we had to rediscover our core, reestablish our Britishness
  • We came from the trench coat, this was our heritage.
We made tough choices at the outset, those choices are the company we have become!
  • Our objective was to establish the most connected compassionate culture and then operate intuitively.
  • It is one thing to make a choice, but another to implement (John Maxwell)

How did you put these choices into practice?

  • As a leader it begins with people, put right people in right place at right time, it is all about the people
  • The transformation was built on trusting relationships, these relationships permeate the company’s culture
  • We flipped the leadership roles, tapped into the younger generation as the innovative generators and the older generation will guide and support them, but the younger generation will drive the innovation and the vision for the path forward.

What kind of culture did you want to build?

  • It is a great responsibility to build a great culture, you not only touch the people who work for you but also the people they go home to each night.
  •  Our job is to make the brand relevant so it stays around for the next 100 years, what is best for the brand, removes ego and self from the equation.
  • Burberry World-the website, this is how we were going to change 150 years of history and culture, 100s of people collaborated around the world to make this happen.

This process was greatest uniter for the team.

  • We kept asking: How do we keep creating this content, keep people motivated, keep it moving forward?
  • Get motive and content through a leader who goes around finding young new unknown bands to partner with them to keep them fresh and growing and this provides motivation and content that keeps them moving forward,keeps us on cutting edge of what is going on today.

Intuition is greatest output of trust in your culture, if you have trust intuition just flows through the organization!

  • You can’t prove something will work that has never been done, our people are not afraid to try stuff, you have to have culture where it is OK to fail in order to make progress and grow beyond where you are currently. We want our people to use their instincts. We value people using their feelings.

We value feeling over knowing!

  • World is moving so fast, our biggest challenge is to make sure our values are imbedded in the culture, never forget where we came from , we must remember our heritage and our values!
We don’t want to be just a great brand, we want to be a really great company!
 
This is our choice, our choice as leaders!

Our vision is that the true measure of our success is how many lives around the world can be touched by power of our performance!

  • The lessons I have learned  are: don’t get intimidated by how fast the world is changing, we are doing this the old fashion way with trust, no matter how fast things are changing stick to your core and build trust into the organization. We then trust our instincts!
Burberry’s Core Values
  1. Protect
  2. Explore
  3. Inspire

“Leadership is all about empowering and trusting your people. When you empower and entrust your people great things happen!” John Maxwell

Urban Meyer

Head football coach for Ohio State University Buckeyes

Choices

Made choice to give up career for a time due to family concerns and health issues. Urban is sharing story about choices that he made in recent years.

  • When you reach the top of the ladder and some issues arise, conflicts, tensions arise.
  • Family, health related issues surfaced due to the pressures of profession.

I never wanted to become that guy, the guy who puts career first and family is neglected!

  • Urban discussed a number of health scares he had then the death of a friend and fellow coach at 52 really shook him up.

I didn’t want to become that guy, but I was becoming that guy, that guy who put his career ahead of his family and health.

  • After numerous health issues and several real scares he walked away from best job in country, even with the #1 recruiting class in nation that year.
  • Urban took year off, coached boys sports team, attending lots of his girls events. Worked to recreate balance and perspective.
Leadership
  • 3 attributes of leaders: 1 selfless 2. work ethic 3. competitive spirit
  • You are a leader when you raise the level of play of those around you.
  • Keep things in perspective
    • Faith and family helps keep things in perspective and keep you balanced

Comments about Tim Tebow
  • Tim Tebow is greatest college football player that has ever played the game!
  • Tim Tebow greatest competitive spirit he has ever encountered.

Tim Tebow has a unique ability to force you to look inward! He forces you to self-evaluate! I believe this is reason a lot of people are uncomfortable with him, don’t like him and criticize him like they do. The way he lives makes some people uncomfortable.

  • He believes his mission is to brighten someone else’s day.

Choices 

  • We make a decision that is important then we manage it the rest of our life!
  • When I was asked what my growth plan was back in my 20’s I had nothing to say because I had none, I did not know that I needed one.
  • Growth is not automatic, it requires intentionality 
  • “15 Laws of Personal Growth”, John’s new book coming out this fall.
First 4 Laws of Personal Growth 

Law #1:  Law of Intentionality-growth doesn’t just happen, we have to grow on purpose 

  • We must make a choice to grow!
  • For years I never found a person that did have a personal growth plan 
  • We don’t automatically get better.
  • We don’t automatically grow.
  • Only thing automatic in life is death. 
  • There’s a choice you have to make in everything you do. So keep in mind the choice you make, makes you. John Wooden
  • His dad paid him to read good books from junior high up, not paid an allowance to do chores 
  • I will put my money where my values are! 
  • My Dad put good books in my hand. 
  • My father was very intentional about helping us grow. 
  • James Allen-“As a man thinkith” Book 
  • We want to change everything around us except us! 
  • Everything gets better when we get better 
  • You have to crock pot leaders, it is a process, you must intentionally grow leaders.

Key to this law: The secret to growing intentionally is growing every day

 

  • My Secret of success is determined by my daily agenda 
  • Be intentional every day 
  • Your Growth Plan must be: Simple, Basic, Practical, Applicable so you can do it every day. 
  • Daily learn how to grow and develop myself
  • Your greatest investment that you will ever make is in yourself, your personal growth.
  •  If you wouldn’t bet on yourself, then why should anyone else?
  • You want to bet on yourself and investing in your personal growth is betting on yourself. 
  • Make a decision to live daily a life of personal growth and development 

 Law #2 Law of Awareness

  • I have to know me to grow me
  • How do I do this?

#1 Requirement?

  •  What is required of me?
  •  What do I have to do?
  • What is expected of me in life?
2. Return?
  • What gives me the greatest return?
  • What do I do well?
  • Strength Zone, what is your strengths?
  • I work on what I do well
  • Take your personal growth effort and put it to your strengths, focus on your strengths!
  • Weak only becomes average after lots of work, no one wants to be just average
  • Discover what you do well and then put all your energy into developing what you do well
  • If you work on your strength then you can become excellent! 
  • You can become the best you that you can become if you focus on your strengths.

#3 Rewarding?

  • What is rewarding to me?
  •  What do I enjoy doing?
  •  Find what you like doing.
  • I have a problem, I can’t discern between what is work and what is play.
  • I love what I do.  

Add these three up and you get Passion!

  • When people have passion they have energy
  • I love being around people with passion 

#4 Law of Environment

  • Growth thrives in condusive surroundings
  • Many of us are not in a good growth environment
What Makes Up A Growth Environment?
1. Growth environment is a place where others are ahead of me, smarter, faster, better leader, etc
  • If you are at the head of the class you are in the wrong class

2. Place where I am continually challenged.

3. Place where my focus is totally forward, yesterday ended last night, it is over get over it, not where I was, it is where I am heading

4. Place where atmosphere is affirming, like minded, growth oriented and directed.

5. Place where I am often out of my comfort zone, over my head, doesn’t matter how deep it is, you are over you head

  • Always want to be out of comfort zone, it will cause you to stretch, but not out of your strength zone 

6. Growth environment is a place where I am excited everyday

7. A growth environment is a place where it is understood that failure is not my enemy, there will be a lot of failure, lots of mess ups, learn to fail forward. 

8. A growth environment is a place where other people are growing.

9. A growth environment is a place where people desire change.

10. A growth environment is a place where growth is modeled and it is expected of me to grow.