Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Getting beyond the Technology

I've been trying to catch up on my reading. Ergo, I found myself paging through the November 2003 issue of FSB (Fortune Small Business) magazine and came upon an article titled, "The High-Tech Blues". (I had trouble finding it on-line at first because I thought the "F" in FSB stood for Forbes. I now know it doesn't.)

Regardless, the article is about something called NEDS, or New Economy Depression Syndrome. According to the article, "[the term was] coined by Tim Sanders, a 42-year old Yahoo executive." "The symptoms of NEDS," the story continues, "sound like those of the old-economy blahs - fatigue, irritability." The cause? Our "constant access to e-mail, cellphones, and the web."

Given this, I found Sanders' recommendation to be a curious one. He suggests that you to and take an on-line test! Now call me crazy, but didn't the guy say that the problem was that we're spending too MUCH time on-line? So that his solution is to spend even MORE time on-line (to take the test) seems a bit ludicrous to me - especially when you visit the site and notice that you can ALSO subscribe to a mailing list to get regular email updates about NEDS!

I think a better solution might be to turn off your Nextel and/or pager, walk away from the computer, and take a 10-minute break. Maybe you could find someone selling squares to the SuperBowl game and buy yourself a few.

(And if you happen to win anything, think kindly of me!)


Tuesday, January 20, 2004

New Content at GottaGettaCoach! Web Site.

Monday, January 19, 2004

Martin Luther King Day

January 19, 2004. Take a few minutes and review the man and his work.

Thursday, January 15, 2004

Trust and Trustworthiness

In the 1qtr2004 issue of my Not Just Talk! newsletter, I wrote an article entitled, On Building Trust, Rapport, and Respect. Here, now, are some additional thoughts about trust and trustworthiness:

1. Trust is not a given; it must be earned by showing that you are trustworthy - several times.

2. The more you use your formal authority to stifle discussions the less people will trust you.

3. The more you use your formal authority to help others solve problems the more people will trust you.

4. Once earned, people still need to be reminded that you can be trusted - that they haven't been burned by trusting you in the past.

5. How well you make - and keep - commitments will determine how people trust you.

6. How well you solicit - and monitor - commitments made to you by others will determine how people trust you.

Do yourself (and everyone around you) a favor. Commit to becoming more genuinely trustworthy this year.


Friday, January 09, 2004

"Awesomely Excellent"

Happy Friday - Happy first WORKING Friday of the year, that is!

Before you head into the weekend, though, take few minutes to reflect on how you did this week. Did you show the world your "Best Self"? How? Did you do something "Awesomely Excellent"? What? Are you proud of how you started this New Year? Why?

There's a LOT of 2004 left to go, so even if you didn't hit-the-ground-running, there's still PLENTY of time to make THIS year the BEST year ever.

But to do that you gotta know what it would take for you to BE "Awesomely Excellent" this year. So before the end of the day, take some time and figure that one out.

Thursday, January 08, 2004

Synergy versus Leverage

I got into an interesting conversation about distinctions yesterday. Specifically, it was about the difference between 'synergy' and 'leverage'. Here's what we concluded:

Synergy is the idea that 1 + 1 > 2. In other words, when you're working with someone on something at work, at home, at school, or wherever, the two of you can accomplish more working TOGETHER than you could if you each worked separately. So it's like a teamwork, or delegation, kind of thing.

Leverage is the idea that 1 > 1. That is we can increase the amount of work we can do as individuals by changing HOW we work. So leverage is like a time-management, strategic implementation kind of thing.

So here are two questions related to these definitions: (1) How can you increase the synergy you have with other people?, and (2) How might you increase the leverage you experience in doing the things you do by yourself?

Saturday, January 03, 2004

Fast Company Issue 78: The Corporate Shrink

It's not on line yet, but the question posed in The Corporate Shirknk column of the January 2004 issue of Fast Company magazine read like this:

"I seem to be on the fast track at my company. The firm sends me to off-site leadership-training programs every year. Frankly, though, while I enjoy the week off and always come back energized, a month later I'm back to my old habits. Is it me, or is leadership training less than it's cracked up to be?"

The response, in part, read something like this:

"Ah, you've hit on one of the great unspoken dilemmas of the business world ... Your experience of leadership training is common. It's flattering to be sent and sometimes inspiring to attend ... But we just don't change our stripes all that much after a week of nearly anything ..."

This speaks DIRECTLY to the inherent value of the ongoing coaching process - something I've been talking about for quite some time. One of the pages on my website specifically discusses how coaching augments training, seminars and conferences. If you haven't looked at it recently, you may want to. And as you think about what seminars and conferences you'll be sending your direct reports to this year, you might want to consider augmenting them (or replacing them entirely) with an ONGOING commitment to your managers' professional development through 1-on-1 coaching, mentoring, and performance consulting.

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Thursday, January 01, 2004

Happy New Year!

Happy 2004 to you and yours. May this be the best year yet!