MEETINGS: ITS MORE THAN JUST THEIR RHYTHM, IT’S ABOUT WHAT YOU TALK ABOUT IN THEM! THE BRUTAL FACTS!

Growing a company is much like becoming a champion sports team. You need a high performing team and a plan for the long term, the near term, and the now. The team follows a disciplined process to practice and play together to reach their goals. Winning teams have all these elements, plus they ensure that when they meet to practice and play, they face the brutal facts of their state and situation. Staying real and facing the truth ensures they to stay focused on the now and stay aligned to their future, allowing them to feel confident that they are making the necessary adjustments to reach their goals. Seems pretty obvious.

 

 

In business, we require all of the same elements to successfully grow a company. In high growth companies, no different than winning teams, they must keep a disciplined cadence of when they “practice and play” – its with their meetings!  In their meetings, they need to be clear and stay focused on the long(10+ year),...

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WHO HAS TIME FOR THE 10,000 HOUR RULE OF MASTERING ANYTHING? WHY YOU DON’T NEED 10K HOURS TO RIDE THE ROAD OF MASTERY.

I loved learning about the 10,000 hour rule when Malcom Galdwell brought it forward in his book “Outliers”.  The 10,000 hour rule was derived from the work of Psychologist K Anders Ericsson, who studied the way people become experts in their fields. However, since its release, many studies have focused on disproving Gladwells 10,000 hour “rule”. Additional studies support a theory that the correlation between hours spent practising and the achievement of mastery are extremely industry/situation dependant. But regardless of the arguments for and against Gladwell’s theory, who really has 10,000 hours to dedicate solely to ONE thing anyway?!

 

As a CEO growing a business and as a CEO Coach, I see first-hand that no one in a leadership role (or any role really) has 10,000 hours to spend mastering just one element needed to grow our companies.  We are trying to be “masterful” at the entire system it takes to grow a...

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HAVE YOU EVER “DOUBLE CLICKED” LIKE THIS BEFORE? 7 STEPS TO GET CLARITY ON YOUR 3HAG SUCCESS FOR YOUR AND YOUR TEAM

I had the great pleasure to meet and hear Judith E. Glaser speak at the Scale Up Summit in May 2018 in New Orleans.  Her latest book “Conversational Intelligence” is one of the most powerful books you can read to create trust with anybody in your life but as well create trust with your team in your business to get results. It is a must read for everyone.  Judith delivered an amazing session closing out with a very long, standing ovation from the room!  Her work will make a difference in your life.  It already has in mine.

 

 One of her many tools is “Double Clicking”. This tool got its name because the process mimics the ‘double‐clicking’ that we use when opening folders on the computer. When Judith uses Double‐Clicking with teams, she asks them to delve into (or double‐click) on their individual mindscapes to share and compare word meanings and perceptions with each other.  Its a perfect...

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THE “OBVIOUS” LEADERSHIP STYLE WILL DRIVE YOUR BUSINESSES TO SUCCESS

When I was building my first company, looking for examples of how to build a culture of trust, there were not as many visible or discussed as there are today. (Jim Collins definitely put a large effort into this research). The “old business” approach to leadership of relying on trust in power was over. Thriving businesses, like ours, were getting places by adopting a “new business” approach: rely on the power of trust!

 

 

I knew the power of trust started with our leaders and the leadership team.  We had to become vulnerable with each other first and I was the one to drive this as CEO. Being a huge fan and ‘groupie’ of Pat Lencioni’s work, we start working through the 5 Temptations of a CEO, Four Obsessions of an Extraordinary Executive and then later the Five Dysfunctions of a Team.  As a coach I still use all these tools and messages with my clients. (I just re-read the Four of Obsessions of a...

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4 WAYS TO BE BETTER AT BEING WRONG AND WHY IT WILL LEAD YOU TO BEING RIGHT

Recently, I rewatched Kathryn Schulz’s TED TALK that synopses her book, Being Wrong. It is one of my favourite business books. It is such a humbling reminder that we are all human and therefore we all make human error.

 

 

Kathryn states that the feeling of being right all of the time, is actually dangerous. Now, this doesn’t mean compromising any knowledge you have gained from your experiences. This means loosening the attachment we have to our own “rightness”.

 As a CEO, or just plain human being, you NEED to allow the opportunity for being wrong. Without opening the door to failure, you are compromising the likelihood of success. Unlike any other animals on this planet, humans are obsessed with figuring out how and why our world is the way it is. Without this curiosity and acceptance of not knowing everything (aka not being RIGHT all the time) we would not be the productive, creative, or innovative species we are.

 

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IS IT “GOOD ENOUGH” FOR NOW? THE QUESTION YOU NEED TO ASK AFTER “GUTTING IT OUT”

In my later years as a serial CEO, and currently today in my coaching practise, I have found myself saying “GOOD ENOUGH” a lot. Like EVERYDAY! This was not always the case. As a recovering perfectionist, those words used to keep me up at night. I never thought that one day, something being “Good Enough” would actually be a key to my companies and clients success!

 

 

Being “Good Enough” actually meant getting over being wrong, and as a CEO, being wrong is very scary. It means you might be leading your team in the “wrong” direction, letting them down, letting their families down, or over all failure. But in order to move forward, you HAVE to not be scared of being wrong! You have to accept things when they are “Good Enough”.

I had to get used to working with my teams to “Gut Out the Answers” and ask ourselves, “ Is it GOOD ENOUGH for now?”.  

It always was.

We...

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SO YOU’RE SETTING GOALS, BUT ARE YOU “GUTTING IT OUT” ENOUGH? THE 14 QUESTIONS YOU NEED TO ANSWER TODAY, TO REACH YOUR GOALS IN BUSINESS AND LIFE.

We are taught at a young age that goal setting is very valuable for achieving our dreams and aspirations. We are also taught that writing down those goals increases our likelihood of achieving them. These things have not changed one bit, for anyone. But even after we write down those goals, why do some people achieve goals more successfully and efficiently than others? The burning question for both business and life.

 

 

Let me start by sharing some of my own experience.

When building my first company, we had big dreams! And like many new and growing companies, we also made [big] mistakes. Our first mistake was not setting goals that connected to those big dreams. Yes I know, this seems like a silly mistake seeing how we have all been told since our youth to write down our goals.  Well, hindsight is always 20-20.  

When we finally discovered this mistake, we were four years into our first company, having raised lots of venture capital and trying to...

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MY FAVOURITE QUESTION AS A CEO AND HOW IT LED MY COMPANIES TO SUCCESS – I HOPE IT BECOMES YOURS TOO!

When I was CEO of two high growth companies, I was asked questions constantly. It felt like the main responsibility of my role – being the question master. I got asked questions from practically everyone, every day, all day. One of my biggest mistake in my FIRST company was trying to answer them ALL. As leaders, we think we need to answer everyone’s questions.  But why?  Do we correlate this directly to the success of our leadership? Our company?

 

 

Often CEO’s and other leaders are in their role because they were/are experts in that field.  This was true in my case as CEO for my companies. As a result, I thought that if I did not answer every question fired at me I would not be viewed as the expert I was. I thought my team would lose confidence in me. I feared that if I declined to answer these questions, my team would head in the wrong direction and I would be to blame. Was I ever wrong!

 

Interestingly enough, the less time...

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YOU CAN’T GROW YOUR COMPANY WITHOUT GROWING YOUR PEOPLE. THE 3 KEY SYSTEMS THAT HIGH GROWTH COMPANIES NEED TO WIN

When I was building my first company, the words of Jim Collins, “right people, in the right seats, doing the right things” were imprinted in my brain. I was reminded daily, in everything I was reading and being told, that in order to grow my business I had to have these three human-pieces in place.  “Find the RIGHT people,  ensure they are in the RIGHT role, and are doing the RIGHT tasks” – MUCH easier said than done!

After learning the hard way with many “people” problems, my leadership team and I agreed that we needed to find a way to bring Collin’s mastery advice to life within our company. This was a really challenging task – not just for our business, but for every company in every industry – making it clear that until we had our “people” systems functioning optimally, our company would not grow as fast as we wanted.

We had to think differently at how we would solve this! Lots of...

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12 STEPS TO ACHIEVE PREDICTABLE PROFIT THROUGH DISRUPTION

 Last week, I was the Keynote Speaker the Saint Mary’s University 43rd Annual Business School Dinner.  What a great honour this was!  The organizers of the event asked if I would speak about disruption in a marketplace and my experience disrupting marketplaces.  I saw this as a perfect way to help educate others through my personal trials and tribulations, so I jumped at the opportunity!

 

y experience of disrupting markets first started with being an innovator.  We were solving problems in markets with innovative solutions but not immediately disrupting these markets.  It was simple to us: we solved problems!  What I soon learned, was that we were actually doing a lot more than problem solving and innovating: we were disrupting!   

 

When you disrupt you take an innovative solution and marry it with some other key differentiating activities, to position the product and company in a very relevant place....

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