Coach Performance Through Data

As a leader you want people, including yourself, to increase or enhance performance. After almost 30 years of coaching people, and watching people coach people, here's one of the most important pieces of advice I can give you about coaching:   Coach the performance of people through data. First, ask these two questions: What measurements [...]

Coach Performance Through Data2024-04-02T19:36:57-04:00

Positive Deviance: Don’t Just Obsess On What’s Not Working, Reproduce What Is

We all want ingenious performance to lead us to better results. In order for teams to get those better results, they must help each other evaluate and alter performance. In the pursuit of better results, it's easy to spend an awful lot of time talking about, and obsessing over, what's going wrong. The rationale goes [...]

Positive Deviance: Don’t Just Obsess On What’s Not Working, Reproduce What Is2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

High Performance Through The Eyes Of A Surgeon

I’m currently reading, Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance, by Atul Gawande. Gawande is a Harvard professor and surgeon . He is also interested in human performance in medicine, and beyon. Early on in the book, he makes two statements that highlight critical elements of high performance.   Statement One   In the first main section [...]

High Performance Through The Eyes Of A Surgeon2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Complexity: Why straight lines rarely lead to better outcomes

Every day I talk with and coach people who want to do (and be) better. It's a deeply human quality to desire that which is "better." Our desire for "better" fuels our ingenuity and energizes our inventive spirit. However, achieving "better"--rather than simply desiring it--is quite a different story. The work that leads to continuous [...]

Complexity: Why straight lines rarely lead to better outcomes2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

I Am Inept (and so are you)

I listened to a portion of an Ezra Klein podcast this morning. Klein interviewed surgeon, writer and philosopher of sorts, Atul Gawande. In one portion of the podcast, Gawande suggests that for the first time in history more of our woes can be attributed to ineptitude rather than ignorance. Sure there are a host of [...]

I Am Inept (and so are you)2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Don’t Develop Leaders in a Vacuum

In their book, Leaders Ready Now, Matthew Paese, Audrew Smith and William Byham point out that accelerating leadership in your organization requires that people take bold risks that have uncertain outcomes. I make a similar case about ingenuity in my book, Tribal Alchemy: Turning What You Have Into What You Need.   Maybe the two [...]

Don’t Develop Leaders in a Vacuum2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Think (and Act) Like An Artist

If the game is Pictionary, you probably don't want me as your partner. The simple fact is, I can't draw. My animals tend to look (at best) like bloated pigs with crooked legs. To be honest, I've relegated myself to stick figures because to venture beyond (mostly) straight lines is a dangerous choice. If you [...]

Think (and Act) Like An Artist2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Who or What Is Your Threshold Guardian?

Who, or what, is your (current) Threshold Guardian?   In the genre of myth, there is always a Threshold Guardian. The Threshold Guardian is a person or set of circumstances that the hero or heroine must face and overcome if he or she is to accomplish the dream, win the prize or actualize potential. Have [...]

Who or What Is Your Threshold Guardian?2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Practice Fast

I have had the privilege of coaching hundreds of people. When I consider the one’s that really upped their performance, during the coaching, there are a few qualities that are common among them. One is this: They practice fast.   When high performing people discover a principle or idea that can improve their performance, they [...]

Practice Fast2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00

Busyness is not a badge of honor

I hate the world “busy.” I suppose it’s not the word itself that I hate, but the way we often use it. --   Friend of Pete: How are you Pete?   Pete: Oh man, I’m busy. --     After “fine” or “good,” “busy” is the next most frequent response people give me when [...]

Busyness is not a badge of honor2024-04-02T19:36:58-04:00