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    Revolutionary Leadership

    March 4, 2019 3330 Views No comments

    There is a lot we can learn from history when it comes to leadership, including the different types of leaders and the lessons both their successes and failures can teach. The Founders of the United States will go down in history as having changed the rules of leadership and redefined what it means to spark change in people. One of the most influential leaders of the American Revolution was Alexander Hamilton. Through his example, and the lessons learned from other Founders, we can understand the principals of revolutionary leadership. Here are three key insights:

    1. Recognize Your Challenges

    In a recent Interact/Harris Poll, 91% of employees said their leaders lack good communication skills. What weaknesses have you identified in yourself as a leader? What about your strengths? As Alexander Hamilton would have realized, the ancient Greek aphorism, “know thyself,” is an excellent place to start in the study of leadership.

    There are many practical ways to assess your particular skills and challenges. Read about strong leaders and compare yourself to them. Take online personality tests and skills assessments. Consider part-time work in fields that are related to what you are interested in. Additionally, ask your boss, mentors, coworkers and friends what they think your challenges are—and don't take offense at their responses!

    2. Set Personal Goals

    Did you know that you are ten times more likely to succeed if you have a stated goal? To start, take some time to determine what your long-term goal is. From there, start setting short-term goals that will help you attain them. You can decide how short the short-term goals are, but a common duration is five years. After five-year goals are established, set up smaller and smaller goals that will help you reach your five-year goals. Remember that each goal should always support achievement of the higher goal.

    3. Never Give Up

    Failure is scary, but it is inevitable: 90% of all startups fail; 50%–60% of executives fail within the first 18 months of being promoted or hired; and 92% of people fail to meet their goals. However, that doesn’t mean you should give up. No one has ever succeeded by giving up after failure. So, even if everyone else abandons you, it is imperative that you never give up on yourself. So what if you miss that promotion or aren't appointed to that leadership position you thought was so important? There is always another promotion to pursue, another team you can join, or another company you can switch to.

    Get more insights from The Leadership Secrets of Hamilton >>

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    Will It Make the Boat Go Faster?

    February 26, 2019 491 Views No comments

    Decision-making, no matter how big or small, takes a toll on your brain – with each decision, it becomes harder for you to weigh the consequences. Once decision fatigue sets in, your brain looks for shortcuts and settles for the path of least resistance. So what can you do to combat decision fatigue? Simplify your decision-making process! Author Joe Calloway shares a story about an effective way you can do this:

    Sir Peter Blake led Team New Zealand to successive victories in the America's Cup yacht competition in 1995 and 2000. The key to this success was that Blake focused the team on one question, which they asked about everything they did: "Will it make the boat go faster”?

    Everything they did and every decision they made had to go through the filter of "Will it make the boat go faster”? This applied to equipment, training, nutrition, crew composition— and more.

    We can all simplify and focus using our version of that question. Look at your daily choices and ask yourself your own version of "Will this make the boat go faster”?

    • Will this get me where I want to go?
    • Will this help me to create positive relationships?
    • Will this assist me in reaching my goal?


    We all have a "boat" we want to go faster. Be sure you are focused on doing things that will help you accomplish your goals. In the process, you will prevent decision fatigue by knowing exactly what you are aiming for.

    From Joe Calloway

    Learn more ways to Keep It Simple>>

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    Why Holding Someone Accountable is a Myth

    February 19, 2019 869 Views No comments

    Accountability. Good employees are accountable. Good leaders hold their employees accountable. Good organizations have accountable cultures.In many ways accountability has become a holy grail to business success. But what does it really mean to be accountable? And what happens when someone isn’t accountable? How organizations deal with non-accountable behavior goes a long way to defining the organizational culture and the focus of the employees.

    The generally accepted definition of being accountable is that “you do what you say you are going to do.” Yet everyone will inevitably fail on this accord. Does that mean they are not accountable?I think it is at that moment of not doing what they said they would do is when you find out if someone is going to act accountably or not. Non-accountable behavior is characterized by excuses, finger pointing, denial, deflecting or refusing to change. Accountable behavior, on the other hand, means taking responsibility for not delivering on the desired results and doing something different until the desired results are achieved.

    Wouldn’t life be great if everyone exhibited accountable behavior 100% of the time? As great as that idea sounds it is not realistic and organizations must decide what to do when someone is not acting accountably. The responsibility usually falls on the leader to hold their employees accountable when they are not acting accountably. To effectively do this, leaders must engage in a series of steps starting with things like setting clear expectations, contracting, incentivizing, and putting feedback mechanisms in place. If that doesn’t do it then they must do things like coaching, reassessing, training or even setting consequences. Continued non-accountable behavior will often lead to disciplinary actions and even termination.

    But who really has the accountability during this process? Who is the one doing something different until the desired results are achieved? The leader! The whole notion of holding someone accountable is really a myth. When a leader says they are holding someone accountable what they are really saying that they are taking the accountability away from the individual. They are now the ones that are doing something different until the desired results are achieved. And if they don’t achieve the desired results their leader is going to do the same thing to them. This is called leader led accountability and is the norm in most organizations.

    There are two significant problems with this approach to managing accountability. One is that not everyone is good at taking the accountability from their employees (formerly known as holding them accountable). Some leaders are afraid of alienating their employees so they shy away from it or they convince themselves they can’t do until they are perfectly accountable themselves. The second problem is that it creates very upward looking organizations. Employees are constantly looking up to their boss as they are they ones whose expectations they have to meet and they are the ones who will take their accountability away if they don’t meet them.

    But there is another way that accountability can be managed and that is when someone’s teammates take it. When team members start to do this to each other that is when the team becomes accountable and extraordinary team results can be achieved. In a lot of ways accountable teams are the ultimate holy grail. They are rare. Teams that are accountable are often considered an anomaly that happened as a result of unique circumstances, a special group of people or an extraordinary leader. While some or all of those do happen on accountable teams, they are part of much bigger array of factors that have to happen to make it possible. The good news is there is a definitive and predictable set of steps that will lead your team to becoming accountable.

    Eric Coryell

    Want to know what inspired Eric Coryell to write Revolutionize Teamwork? Find out with this author Q&A>>

    Love Your True Self

    February 11, 2019 637 Views No comments

    Every one of us has unique experiences and personalities. That means we all have so many different stories. Do you share yours? It can be hard to trust that we’ll be accepted by friends and family, but to live a life that matters – a life with purpose – you need to embrace who you are, and be honest and authentic with those around you.

    That doesn’t mean you need to share every story with everyone you know. But living your life as your true self means that all your interactions will be genuine, and when you do decide to trust someone with a story, you will be able to handle their reaction. Why? Because loving and accepting your true self gives you strength and allows you to see who you are clearly.

    How can you express your true self? Here are three purposeful ways to take a closer look at who you are and how you choose to connect with those around you:

    1. Mean Your Message – look at your emails, social posts, texts, etc. that you put out into the world this past week. Take an audit: Did you mean what you said? Did you spread positivity or negativity? Be honest with your assessment and then put a plan in place to make adjustments.
    2. Cherish Love – find a way to share your love with friends and family in your own creative and meaningfully way.
    3. Be a Flatterer – arm yourself with compliments, Post-Its and a pen. You know what you need to do next.

    Morgan Vogt, Sourcebooks Employee

    Discover more ways to live a life that matters with Every Monday Matters>>

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    New Year, New You

    February 4, 2019 345 Views No comments

    New Year, New You is all the rage in 2019. Information is being thrown at us across all channels - each platform offering their own definition (and solution!) to become a better, improved, polished, “you.” While I agree that these steps to professional growth are necessary, I was somewhat reluctant to jump in head first to the latest and greatest trend to make me a better version of myself. I wanted something different – a concept that could be learned and understood quickly, but with measurable results. I was looking for simple steps to help me live healthier and happier while allowing for milestones that could be met throughout the year.

    Taking a look at the preview of Smarter Next Year, I saw eye-opening information that helped me decide to work on my mind first. If 50% of the population start to show a decline in metal ability by the age of 40, I knew I needed to do something and I needed to do it quickly. Learning further that some of the top causes of of this decline are lack of sleep, poor diet, and physical inactivity, I had a solid plan for what I needed to do right away.

    By taking an hour for myself this weekend, I dove into Smarter Next Year. Author David Bardsley helped me change the way I think about my brain by showing me how I could improve my ability to understand, store, and retrieve information with a very simple idea. I learned that there are ways to having a younger, sharper mind… and they are built on uncomplicated concepts – almost easily attainable once I put my mind to it.

    I was impressed by the information I read in this book and how relatable it was on both a personal and professional level. After seeing the downloadable training preview, I knew this was something that would go further than a conversation with friends or discussion with my book club. Seeing the slides that offered such relatable data in a simple way was helpful for me to make my 2019 goals and to determine what my New Year, New Me would entail.

    Kavita Wright, Sourcebooks Employee

    Learn how you can improve your mind and health with Smarter Next Year >>


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