Tag Archive: executive team

Leaders and “They”

August 26th, 2016

Weak leadership is prevalent but surmountable by starting with an attitude adjustment. Instead of thinking of other leaders as “they”, remember that it’s a team effort and collaborate as “we”.

80% of leaders are not living up to the task! We come across hundreds of leaders every year – at our clients, non-profit work and while connecting with former colleagues and key contacts. It is unimaginable how many weak leaders there are out there! If you have some of the stronger ones, HANG ON tight!

The amount of wishy-washy leaders is simply mind-boggling. How can we get a grasp on this BIG problem rapidly? Start by taking a step back and think about “they”. When you catch yourself saying, “They won’t let me” or “They want xyz”, think about they. Who are they? Put a name to “they”.

If you are a manager, perhaps it is your boss, a Director, the CEO or CFO. Do you know? When I became “they”, it was amazing how often I had to catch myself thinking “they”, correcting it to “me or us” — even if it was the executive team, I was responsible to collaborate with this group so it was still up to me to resolve. Or, is there really no “they”? It becomes just something we say. What if we have to start owning “they”?

If you are an employee, who is “they”? Insist upon a name or group of names. The roadblocks are suddenly less complicated if we can identify the roadblock (the “they”). If you are the CEO, perhaps you are “they” – unless you are thinking of the Board of Directors or corporate (if you are a General Manager). As in my example, it really circles back to you to address the “they”.

Once you know specifically who “they” is, repeat your statement again. Do you really think “they” will not allow you to proceed with what you think is best for the company, your customer, etc.? If so, go talk to your manager.  Perhaps you and your manager can go to “they” together.

In our experience, “they” disappear quite quickly. Results will follow. And, leaders will begin to soar.


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Collaborate to Thrive

May 3rd, 2016

Collaboration is a common practice that runs through successful companies who encourage teamwork, building connections and mutual problem-solving.

It was not only a week of summits and symposiums but it was also a week for awards and recognition. In watching closely who won the top awards across the board, we saw a common thread in the winners — collaboration.

One of the award winners spoke directly to the critical importance of collaboration. She is also known for bringing together diverse and often-opposing opinions together to find common solutions. In another instance, the award winner complimented his business partners during the award speech. In another, a member of his rotary thought so much of the company owner that she went out of her way to make sure he was recognized again. It seems clear that collaboration is key to success.

Who can we collaborate with as a business owner or executive?

  • Executive team: Certainly, it is a good idea to start with your executive team. A top notch team will make “2+2=16”.
  • Peer groups: My ProVisors group (of trusted advisors) contains an experienced and successful peer group leader (Ron Penland). His companies grow faster than average, are more profitable than the norm — and SELL at much higher multiples than the industry average. It certainly makes sense not to argue with success.
  • Trusted advisors: Those with exceptional advisors will perform better than the rest — hands down.
  • Industry groups: There is a wealth of information and contacts available in the best industry groups. Find those appropriate to you.
  • Alumni: The point of going to a top rated college is less about the education than it is about the connections. Have you stayed in touch with your alumni groups? There is an instant connection built in.
  • Community: Some of the best-connected people are community leaders and advocates. Last night, I went to the Claremont Rotary’s Taste of Claremont. It was the epitome of top leaders and community advocates getting together for GREAT food and drinks. I tell you what — when my house burned down several years ago, I was quite happy when the community fast-tracked inspections and was supportive in general — invaluable!

As I often say in my speeches, collaborate to THRIVE!

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