February 28, 2018 Daily Post
Would they miss you if you were gone?
Your teammates, that is. Who would miss you more? Who wouldn’t miss you that much? Why?
If you’re on a great team, you may never want to leave. But asking yourself this question may reveal where there’s important work to be done.
How about your team’s customers and clients? Would they miss you if your team was gone? Or would they merely “pick another” to buy from? Why?
Asking this question may reveal where–as a team–there’s important work to do.
February 27, 2018 Daily Post
What if admitting weakness makes you seem stronger?
It always seems to be the most confident, proficient members of teams that are quickest to point to their mistakes and apologize for them.
And it seems to be the less-confident, less-proficient members that rarely apologize, or spot (or admit) their weaknesses–instead, apologies are replaced with versatile excuses.
On your team, how often do you admit weaknesses? Your answer may point to your next growth opportunity.
February 26, 2018 Daily Post
“Life is long if you know how to use it.” – Seneca Ever said, “we’ll get around to that… someday”?
I hear teams say this often. And it’s always from passionate teams, full of energy and great ideas.
But we have the team. We just don’t always use it wisely: we get stuck with Low MPG. The current obsession with workaholism is to blame:
When we want to do more, we try to keep going when we should be maximizing the potential of our bodies.
How can your team bring your “someday” work closer, by avoiding Low MPG?
February 25, 2018 Daily Post
Ever taken a personality quiz? Or a StrengthsFinder?
My teams love these things, and they get to communicate more effectively with each other as a result.
But whether it’s ‘personality types’ or ‘position agreements’, there’s an important distinction: Define your role. Don’t be defined by it.
Introvert or Extrovert, Operations or Marketing, it applies equally:
How are labels and roles defining you? How are you instead defining them?
February 24, 2018 Daily Post
Which are we supposed to focus on?
There’s merit in both: in our similarities and in our differences.
As a team, we must focus on both, at different times:
What makes you the same? What makes you different?
February 23, 2018 Daily Post
Teams are not families.
It’s common, particularly in the tech world, to see teams–regardless of strength or culture–referred to as ‘families’. In reality, the best teams realize they’re the supporter of families:
Teams that behave like families enable each other to thrive in their actual family units. No more Foosball.
February 22, 2018 Daily Post
What’s wrong with preaching to the choir?
We use this phrase to suggest something is redundant. But we have the choir’s attention. Shouldn’t they have ours?
Those who’ve not yet experienced your team’s work need a sales experience to help them make the right decisions. Those who’ve seen your genius need serving and celebrating more than they probably are.
How could you preach to your choir?
February 21, 2018 Daily Post
Is there such a thing as “too much help”?
We’ve talked before about how to “call the cavalry” on teams, to offer help and support when needed.
But cavalry can be overused.
By our definition of A+B players, team members grow (B-to-A) rather than regress (B-to-C).
Fire-drills are supposed to be common. Fires are supposed to be rare.
Having cavalry enables teams to keep better promises, providing everyone on the team uses it wisely.
February 20, 2018 Daily Post
“Well, if you don’t have time to do it right, what makes you think you’ll have time to do it over?” – Seth Godin, Purple Cow Your work isn’t perfect.
And it doesn’t need to be. Yet it still needs to get done.
As team members and individuals, whenever we do tasks or assume responsibilities, we should remember in a pinch that:
What do you need to get done, imperfectly, today?
February 19, 2018 Daily Post
Ever thought, ‘If I knew the future, I could rock today”?
Yesterday we talked about intuition. Today we’re talking about beliefs.
From machine rights to literally sharing your thoughts with others, the future is sure to contain many “surely not” moments.
But what do you believe today that, in 100 years time, will seem totally ridiculous?
What do you believe? Future-pace it and see what happens.
February 18, 2018 Daily Post
Last month we touched on 3 things robots can’t do.
Let’s touch on the first: intuition.
Intuition is the ability to acquire knowledge without proof, evidence or conscious reasoning, or understanding how the knowledge was acquired.
This enables us to say:
Intuition behaves below consciousness, we experience it from our subconscious, away from focal awareness or critical-thought function (things AI will effectively simulate).
Aside from the eventually-autonomous parts of your work, how can you and your teammates bring more intuition to your work?
February 17, 2018 Daily Post
How much do you know?
Those who focus on what they know, know the least. The more you talk, the less listening–and learning–you get to do. The more someone enjoys the sound of their own voice, the less likely there’ll be wisdom in their words.
Those who focus on what they don’t know, know the most. Great minds ask great questions, talk less, and absorb the information in the room. When they do decide to speak, you know it’s worth hearing.
Teams thrive when members are more interested in learning from each other than convincing each other.
Which do you do prefer: talking, or listening?
February 16, 2018 Daily Post
Ever been to a tie shop?
To some, a necktie is a necessary item in a store with too many options to choose from. $18 to “get me out of here.”
To Hermès, a necktie tells a story – one so important, they feature Gary, “the peerless expert”, to guide shoppers toward the right tie for them on their website and Madison Ave store. $180 to “tell my story with my ensemble.”
Most teams get to choose how they see themselves and the value they bring to the products and services in their market. Just like like Gary and his team did.
Who would you like to deal with? The “Get me out of here” *guys or the *“Tell my story with my ensemble” guys?
And who do you want to be? Thefaceless retail help peddling cheap ties to whomever, or “Gary the peerless-expert”?
What’s stopping you?
February 15, 2018 Daily Post
Mark Court is really good at what he does.
If you’ve ever seen a Rolls-Royce with coachlines (stripes), you’ve seen his work.
That’s what he does: he paints coachlines.
What’s your coachline?
February 14, 2018 Daily Post
Which of these two statements do you prefer:
If you’re like most people, you’ll much prefer hearing the latter.
The first leaves people feeling like whatever they tried to do was wrong, and that they shouldn’t do it again. That growth is too dangerous to attempt.
The second leaves people feeling like whatever they tried to do wasn’t perfect, and can be improved. That growth is too important not to attempt.
Next time you give feedback to a team member, which is it to be: Why or What?
February 13, 2018 Daily Post
Be careful what you create.
Some teams try to create everything. And therefore nothing is truly amazing, simply because they had to try to do it all themselves. Even Rolls-Royce curates liberally from BMW parts, allowing them to focus their creative-genius on what makes them unique.
Other teams try to curate everything. And therefore nothing is truly unique, simply because they won’t create anything themselves. Even Amazon creates its own products, despite profiting almost-exclusively from selling other people’s products.
What do you create? Make it your genius, and make it the best work of your lives.
What do you curate? Work with the best, and let them make it the best work of their lives.
February 12, 2018 Daily Post
Fake things can damage your focus.
One of my favorite wristwatch designs is Omega’s Seamaster 300. It’s around $5,000 to acquire. Fakes are apparently around $200.
Quality and ethics should be the least of a fake buyer’s concerns. Worse is the mindset it creates for that buyer:
This has nothing to do with wristwatches, or what is/isn’t an acceptable price for something.
It’s about you.
Where is your focus: on uncompromising growth and potential, or on merely faking it?
February 11, 2018 Daily Post
Sometimes the only answer we have is, “Because that’s just how people do it.”
And it’s a terrible answer.
Teams the world over accept this answer without ever challenging it. What if yours did?
Most rules were defined by people no smarter than you, and many standards are simply coincidental patterns we chose to accept.
How might things change for your team if you remember these facts next time someone asks, “Why does that rule exist?”
February 10, 2018 Daily Post
When you screw up, what happens next?
Is your team a ‘Win/Lose’ or ‘Win/Learn’ environment?
If ‘learn’ means growth and ‘loss’ means the neglect of growth, let’s turn our attention to the differentiator: the pursuit of growth.
How could your team grow closer and stronger through a shared pursuit of growth?
February 09, 2018 Daily Post
A couple of years ago, auto companies presented their visions for the next 100 years.
Most of them flaunted exotic 3D interfaces and unconventional new designers.
Rolls did the opposite. Titled ‘103EX’, they removed the dials, switches and interface altogether. What remained was a couch.
Making things complicated is simple. Making things simple is complicated.
Last week, one of our teams was congratulated–during a sales presentation–for successfully leapfrogging the rest of the market as they’d experienced it.
Not for some sort of impressive display of complicated nuance and self-importance, but for an exercise in radical simplification.
What’s complicated on your team right now? Does it need to be?
February 08, 2018 Daily Post
Are you ready for when it all goes right?
There are times you dream of as a team. Customers and clients beating down your doors. New orders coming in faster than you can keep track of.
Stop: “faster than you can keep track of”? That’s an issue.
In aerodynamics, frictional force increases with speed. Cars have lift force issues, teams have “dropping the ball” issues.
How well is your team designed to handle the frictional force of growth?
Consider these factors your “team aerodynamics” and an indicator of how fast you can go.
How fast do you want to go? And what changes might you need to make to handle the frictional force that comes with it?
February 07, 2018 Daily Post
Ever get to the end of a day feeling you should have done more?
Even if you were hard at it all day?
We often ‘feel’ when we’re truly contributing to our team (and when we’re not) regardless of how busy we are.
Conversely, have you ever got through half a week and felt like you’ve already “crushed it”? Let’s define that. I call it the “Thing Of The Week”.
It goes like this:
While the other things may still need doing, how would ensuring your “Thing Of The Week” gets done affect the way you feel about the coming week, and about your contribution to your team?
February 06, 2018 Daily Post
Success is not a goal.
If it’s yours, you and your teammates are unlikely to achieve it.
I’d like to argue that “success” is a starting point, not a finishing line. An ingredient, not a destination.
Success: Trying until you reach a goal in the short/medium/long term. Failure: Stopping that trying process prior to goal attainment.
How does adopting the premise that success is a starting point change the way you approach your work, as a team or on a personal level?
February 05, 2018 Daily Post
Do you have a junk-drawer full of ebooks, courses, and products?
Let’s talk about the next time you decide to download a PDF or buy a product. Consider doing so while affirming this as a team:</p>
“We’re going to become their favorite testimonial” – your team What does this mean?
If you resolve to become everybody’s favorite testimonial, how would that influence how you approach your next opt-in or purchase? How would it affect how much value you get out of every activity?
February 04, 2018 Daily Post
Every problem has a solution. Even the hard ones.
And while the road to a solution may vary, there’s comfort in knowing there’s a process of finding it. Turns out, the process only has four steps, posing as questions:
Equipped with these steps, we’re unable to become ‘stumped’ or ‘stuck’ for very long.
Think about a problem you or your team is facing at the moment. How could these four questions help guide what you do next?
February 03, 2018 Daily Post
Most things aren’t as hard as we think they are.
‘Hard’ often replaces words like ‘new’, ‘unfamiliar’, ‘unknown’, and ‘different’. For example:
There are ‘hard’ things out there. Fighting a war. Losing a family member. Grievous manual labor. But learning a new skill? Or consulting about a business problem?
Think about the ‘hard’ work ahead of you. How could redefining it from ‘hard’ to ‘new’, ‘unfamiliar’, ‘unknown’, or ‘different’ change the way you tackle (and feel about) that work?
February 02, 2018 Daily Post
Guilty. We all want to make our important work the very best it can be.
That’s why we like to add icing and sprinkles to things: to try and make it better.
While baking our next important work, if your mind (or brainstorming session) suggests “let’s add sprinkles”…ask yourself:
“Do we have a good vanilla sponge, yet?”
February 01, 2018 Daily Post
How many times a day do you give or receive feedback?
Feedback can be one of two things:
Unselfish feedback propels good work forward. Selfish feedback not only slows it down but makes it lose its sense of direction. Of the two examples, can you tell which is which?
While giving feedback, ask yourself: “Is this feedback just ‘my style’, or does it help move things forward toward the goal?” If you’re unsure, you’re not clear enough on the goal.
Similarly, while receiving feedback, ask yourself: “Where’s the unselfish part of this feedback that will help me move things forward toward the goal?” This filter helps keep things on track.
Next time you give feedback, ask yourself, “Is this “Unselfish feedback?”