“Apply Yourself”

One of the things teachers often say to the parents of struggling kids is, “Johnny just needs to apply himself.” The parents often walk away agreeing that, in fact, Johnny does need to apply himself and they tell him as much when they get home. While it may sound like a utilitarian comment, it is far from clear what action is required in “applying” oneself—therefore, nothing changes. We can only imagine the number of kids who walk away rolling their…

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How Do I Help People Know What They Don’t Know?

We received some very nice comments about last week’s post, thank you, and also another question that deserves some thought. “What do you do with people who don’t know enough to know whether or not they are going to hurt the business?” Last week we talked about how to establish the 3-5 rules that, if set, could help guide individuals and teams as they are tackling all the things that come at them day-to-day and week-to-week. The challenge of course,…

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Fearless vs. Reckless

(Although we are talking about this in an organizational setting today, you will see the necessity for similar considerations in your family life, decisions about finances, and in roles in your community.)  In today’s economy, there is a lot of pressure to take risks that will increase the company’s market share and bottom line.  Recently, we heard the CEO of a large, conservative financial organization state that he wants his teams to “go for it and ask forgiveness later.”  And,…

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Owning Your Impact When You Make a Mistake

One of the key behaviors in claiming your power is taking responsibility for your actions.  A willingness to stand tall in your missteps, as well as your successes, is central to your ability to be at your strongest.  Often people worry that actions like admitting mistakes, cleaning up damage, and apologizing in relationships will leave them smaller when, in fact, the opposite is true.    Taking responsibility for your words and actions reminds you that you are the person at…

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The Power of Spirals

You may be thinking: “Spirals? What do spirals have to do with business and life?”  Quite a bit actually.   We have come to think in terms of spirals.  It’s a simple image to help our clients think about the decisions they are making and whether they are fostering growth and evolution or whether they are problematic.  Remember, as humans we are either evolving (growing) or we are devolving (getting smaller).    Think about it for a moment, stability only…

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The Leader in You

We are passionate about changing the way people think about leadership.  We have taught our Charting Bold Creative Leadership training to executives and organizational leaders and we’ve supported them to understand that they will have more power, and their organizations  will have more success, if they help individuals at all levels in all roles step into their leadership. Families, organizations, and communities everywhere need each person to step into their leadership, regardless of their role.  Yet, we find over and over again, that people have…

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3 Things To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do

If you are like the rest of us, you sometimes find yourself in situations where you don’t have a drop down menu. Your drop down menu consists of all the options your brain scans when you are confronted with an opportunity or a challenge. It works great unless your drop down menu doesn’t have an option that fits the situation, or if the drop down menu you have used previously is no longer helpful. While most of us feel quite…

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What to Do When You Blow It

Me? Blow it? The truth is, we all blow it.  As leaders, team members, staff, parents, adult kids, neighbors, you name it; it’s human nature to blow it from time to time.  And, here’s the paradox about blowing it, if you handle the moments after you realize what you’ve done well, you can actually build greater trust, loyalty, credibility and intimacy despite having blown it.  So, it’s important that you learn how to handle “blow it” moments thoughtfully and with…

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Be Careful about What Others Come to Trust in You

In our last two posts (“Be Thoughtful About Your Message” and “Be Thoughtful About Your Message, Part 2“) we recounted an experience we had with an online, professional group and its leadership. In short, there had been much discussion and an explicit commitment to creating transparency among the leaders and the group. When the originator of the group, Mark, publicly disagreed with the leader, Anton, on how things were going, Anton deleted Mark’s communication and didn’t mention it to the…

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Aligning Your Words and Your Actions, Part 2

Last week (Aligning Your Words and Your Actions) we described our participation in an online, professional group that was started to create a team of experts focused on providing high-quality, responsive programs that were of service to clients while building brand recognition and professional success for the providers.    The early stages of the project were done online, in view of the entire group. And then it happened.  A post arrived in our mailbox from the originator of the idea,…

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