A while back I caught a few minutes of the TV gameshow Jeopardy. One of the questions was a great reminder for leaders.
The clue … WHITTIER WROTE, “OF ALL SAD WORDS OF TONGUE OR PEN, THE SADDEST ARE THESE …” 4 OF REGRET THAT COMPLETE THE LINE.
The answer … IT MIGHT HAVE BEEN.
The lines come from Whittier’s poem, Maud Muller. It is about two people who missed an opportunity for love, only to be left thinking, “It might have been.”
Scary words for a leader. Think about it. With barely more than a quarter left in 2016, many of us are on the doorstep of “It might have been?”
Before the curtain closes on 2016, I encourage you to refocus and go into attack mode to finish the things still undone.
If you will, at year end hopefully you’ll be able to say, “I did it,” rather than, “It might have been.”
What needs to be your top priority before the end of 2016?
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A while back I had a great conversation with a leader who runs a company that generates over five million in annual sales. To say he is successful would be an understatement.
I spent most of our time together asking questions and taking notes. Being a student of high performance organizations, I was fascinated by one thing in particular he said …
Wow! So simple, and yet, how many organizations have we all seen micromanaged or controlled by egos?
Are you struggling to keep your team members fully engaged? If so, one of the best things you can do is delegate some decisions. The truth is, those in the trenches usually make better decisions than the ones in the executive suites.
Remember, the lower decisions are made in an organization, the healthier the organization.
How well does your organization share decision making?
Comment Below …
I love teams. Since I was five years old they have been a part of my life.
I’ve been on good teams, bad teams, and even a couple of great teams. My experiences have surfaced the question, “What is the differentiator between teams that are average, or even below, versus those that thrive.
I have a theory. Could it be that as leaders we have failed to foster an environment where everyone is allowed input?
The best leaders allow those on their teams to weigh in on important decisions. Unfortunately, not every leader falls into this category. Many default to controlling, micro-managing, ignoring, and even shaming those they hired to help them. As a result it shuts down engagement.
If your team is currently stuck or there are members who are less than fully engaged, maybe it’s time to have a conversation and listen to everyone’s input. Remember, people don’t need their way as much as they need their way considered.
Greatness is a choice. If we will spend more time listening our teams will be well on their way to becoming dominant.
Why do you think some teams flounder while others flourish?
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Different is good.”
When Bill Murray, a.k.a. Phil Connors, uttered those famous words in the movie Groundhog Day in 1993 my streak was at 37. It ended this past Monday at 1,268, and different felt … well, different.
One thousand, two hundred and sixty-eight consecutive Mondays with at least one kid living under our roof came to a screeching halt. The empty nest descended like the end of summer for a teacher. Good, but not good.
On Monday, the house was quiet. Not just any old quiet; the kind of quiet that comes when Katherine Gravitt is not around. She has a way of creating noise in a place – good kind of noise. Noise that makes you feel valuable and necessary and glad to be a dad.
I keep reminding myself that we didn’t raise our four daughters to keep them, but it is still quiet. The silence tempts me to cling to what was. Twelve hundred and sixty-eight Mondays happened so fast. Emerson was right.
But as the leader of my family, I recognize it is time to let go. No more horse in the driveway or late night chats. No more delegating trash-duty or the dishes. The stories are told, the homework is done, and the shoes – lots of shoes – have been bought. Yes, it is time to let go.
I’m still not sure Phil Connors was right. I don’t know if I believe different is good or not, but I do believe in Katherine. And for that reason, I’m okay with the streak being over.
Why do you think it is so hard for leaders to let go?
Comment Below to respond or to leave Katherine advice for college …