The Magic of a Conversation

If you’re not coaching your employees who is?  Chances are it won’t be your best performer!  Not coaching your employees is akin to a football coach choosing to watch the scoreboard as his primary strategy for winning the game.  Unfortunately, that is what many managers do, they use the scoreboard to tell them there are problems (or successes), rather than being in the game itself.

In all of my years “coaching” managers and executives I have heard every excuse in the world for NOT coaching employees. The excuses run the gamut of “not having enough time” to “it won’t do any good.”  The message I want to leave you with today is that coaching matters and to help make sure you understand coaching for what it is and how it occurs. (more…)

I Want To Develop Somebody – But Who?

Recently, when discussing the details of succession planning (uh, oh, here he goes again…!) I was asked the following by a colleague:

What general competencies, skills, attributes or potentials should we be seeking in someone worthy of developmental efforts, and how do we determine them in candidates? Are those things different for potential departmental/functional heads versus those being considered for C-level responsibilities?

My shorter version: “Who the hell do I develop?”


The Power in Asking Questions to Identify Value

Measuring value for clients with clear, tangible results is important. But before measuring anything, we have to be very clear about what we’re trying to solve for. Without asking the right questions, it’s impossible to uncover any value, and measuring? Well, without a clear purpose, that’s simply a waste of time.

Identify the core issue correctly, then measure- there’s real value in that.

The Power of Asking Questions

The most powerful thing I do for any organization is to ask questions. The advantage of having a reasonably intelligent, well-intentioned third party come in is that I get to ask stupid questions and my career is not limited because of it. In other words, I can sit across the table from an executive and ask what he thinks is a dumb question. “Why do we ship those to China?” Well, okay, roll your eyes, get disgusted- then answer my question. I can assure you that I am going to push back on some of the responses. Asking questions is how I find where things are. (more…)

CEO Leadership Style When Private Equity Comes In?

When a business brings on a private equity group, whether it is to help them out of turmoil, cash out some owners, allow an exit from an earlier PE group or to continue to grow the company, one of the most important elements that often requires rethinking is the difference in leadership styles between the CEO and the private equity group. It can be a bit rough in discerning these differences and that’s expected. Not sure you understand the nuance? Here’s a quick tutorial. Take notes… (more…)

Check Your Ego At the Door…It Might Be You

Our world today tends to be a selfish one and that doesn’t differ when it comes to business either. When you meet with a consultant, everyone wants to know: “What’s in it for me?” In a nutshell, that’s actually the cornerstone of what I do for an organization. I help someone mitigate their pain. Even if my client is just the one person experiencing some sort of pain or challenge, my end goal is to satisfy them– to help them understand what can be done to relieve that suffering. If I do that first, help them understand how to relieve pain, then the understanding keeps giving, often linking to other, unexpected areas. The gift that keeps on giving… (more…)