Entries by gmader

Can you tolerate things getting worse before they get better?

Consider this rare and true example: A sales team of a technology company was struggling to achieve its objectives. Team members worked long hours, including weekends and holidays to meet their numbers, everyone felt overworked and stressed and needless to say “work-life balance” was a big issue.  The General Manager of that organization, who was a bold, demanding and strategic leader, came out with an edict to transform his team’s predicament: “No one was allowed to work past 8pm on weekdays or at any time on the weekend.” He made it clear that everyone was still expected to deliver their numbers, and that offenders of his new instructions would suffer the consequence. At first, people […]

Are you just expecting results and progress or relentlessly driving them?

If you want to achieve a bold outcome or drive a new reality and change in 2019, don’t expect your desired outcomes to just happen, cause them to happen! This statement may sound over simplistic, obvious and common sense to you. However, I cannot tell you how many times when I work with organizations even at the senior levels, where I see people frustrated because they did everything, they believe is needed in order to get the result and it still didn’t happen. Alternatively, they put in place the process, metrics, milestone and/or alerts to achieve the result and they have been tracking them on a frequent basis or they instructed their team members to […]

Is your team showing up aligned in public?

A senior executive of a large global service organization, whom I was working with, was sharing with me the challenges he and his peers were having in being able to address key challenges and opportunities as a senior executive team, through open, honest, authentic and courageous debate. The collective trust wasn’t there and as a result, the senior leaders either avoided dealing with key challenges or when they had the opportunity, they weren’t honest enough to reach resolution and alignment. Needless to say, the senior executives often left the Executive Leadership Team meetings feeling dissatisfied with their outcomes and frustrated about the lack of debates and alignment. It was hard for the senior executives to […]

Make 2019 the best year ever!

I love new beginnings. Starting a new year, chapter or phase brings with it new possibilities and hope. Whether you want to improve your financial situation, increase your health or fitness, find true love or find your dream job, at the start of a new cycle we often feel that we have another chance to realize our goals—including those we tried but didn’t achieve before. I find this space of possibility and opportunity extremely empowering and exciting. However, in order to truly experience a fresh start, you have to first understand and accept the fact that new possibilities and hope exist in your own heart and mind, not in the real world. In fact, your […]

Complete 2018 in a meaningful way

Completing a chapter effectively can be a meaningful and powerful endeavor if you approach it with a deliberate and conscious mindset. Unfortunately, most people tend to focus more on starting a project and executing it, and when it reaches its end, they just move to the next one. We tend to underestimate the power and value of completing things effectively, not merely finishing or ending them. The dictionary defines ‘Finishing‘ as ‘Bringing a task or activity to an end. It defines ‘Completing‘ as ‘Making something whole or perfect’. You don’t have to do anything for something to end. It is the nature of any cycle. Things begin, go through their evolution and end. A year, […]

Are you addicted to your smartphone?

I spent a few days on the beach in Miami with my wife, and I couldn’t help but be shocked by people’s behavior with their smartphones. My day started early at the gym with a small handful of exercisers. Even at 7am many of the exercisers were glued to their smartphones for the entire duration of their exercise. People were walking on the treadmill and cycling on the bike while being completely immersed in their smartphone for 90 minutes, without lifting their eyes from it. At breakfast I saw a few couples and families sitting around the table, everyone with eyes glued to their smartphone as they were eating, with an occasional brief exchange of […]

Shift the conversations and the results will follow

I can’t say enough about the power of words and conversations. Changing certain conversations can change the course of your direction and results for the better or worse. People say that “Talk is cheap“. That is not true! Talk is very powerful, but we tend to make talk ‘cheap’ by speaking in ways that either don’t make any difference or that undermine what is important to us. For example: If a commitment we have or a project we are working on isn’t going well, complaining about it, or blaming others for why it isn’t working won’t make a difference and won’t change anything. In fact, it would most likely make things worse. Blaming others may […]

Don’t forget to count your blessings!

This week, Americans are celebrating their Thanksgiving holiday. I am not an American, however, I love Thanksgiving and the opportunity it gives us to formally ‘give thanks’. We don’t count our blessings nearly enough and we definitely don’t express gratitude to the people we respect and love enough. We all could do a better job with this, no matter what country we live in. There is a quote from Swindoll that I like that says: “Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.” On a daily basis, we deal with circumstances and situations that give us the opportunity to choose our outlook, mood, and course of action. Sometimes we […]

Are you investing in building your team?

If you were the manager of an NBA basketball team, or any professional sports team, with the best stars in the league, would there be any dilemma or doubt in your mind about the need for a coach? Would you think: “We don’t need to spend time on team strategies and team dynamics, they take away from individual players’ shooting practice or their chance to rest between games? And, if you were winning the playoffs, would you then feel that “We don’t need a coach because we are doing so well“? The answer is No, No and No! No sports manager in his/her right mind would think this way. And, by the way, it is […]

Agreeing to disagree is always a cop-out

Too often I see the following scenario: A team meets to discuss issues that are critical to the organization’s success. The conversation goes on and on without resolution, as different people have divergent opinions about the best course of action. When the leader tries to bring it to a conclusion, they are no closer to alignment. They leave the meeting “agreeing to disagree.” Such meetings are worse than a waste of time, in fact, they can actually damage the organization, which is then no closer to making the necessary decisions and assuming responsibility for them. People stay within their comfort zones at the expense of moving the organization forward in new and dynamic ways. Take […]

It takes more than understanding change to achieve it

I was invited to help a large global service company transform its bureaucratic, siloed and slow culture into an agile, cohesive and innovative one. In order to learn about this company, I interviewed around thirty managers and employees at all levels. They all pretty much told me the same things and highlighted the same issues, challenges, and obstacles that were getting in the way of greater performance and change. They all acknowledged that the organization was too siloed, that managers were too focused on their own area and not enough on the greater success. They all pointed at trust, alignment and communication issues between functions and businesses that were causing tensions, conflicts and hurting effectiveness […]

Don’t underestimate the power of intention

I know too many people who don’t have the reality they want personally and/or professionally and they constantly complain about it, blame others or the circumstances for it and overall give excuses for it. In fact, when I asked one of them the question “How are you doing?” their response was: “Same shit different day!” I have heard different variations on that theme from others… Contrast that with a real-life story (no names) with two chapters: Chapter One: A sales team that was struggling with making their sales targeted numbers for a long time wanted a break. They had enough of wallowing in their sorrows. They wanted a breakthrough; they wanted to start winning and […]