Blog: Leading & Living Courageously

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 […]