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<p>There’s been a lot of chatter about company cultures recently. Unfortunately, that includes lots of bad examples.

  • Google employees are arguing about gender bias.
  • Airlines have opened up a debate about what enables great customer service.
  • Restaurants are starting to figure out that the roots of food contamination often start with how their workers think of their role in the company.
  • These events have increased the realization that businesses are more like organisms than machines. They’re based on how people believe and behave as a group.

Many people seem to think that “culture” is just a thing that happens to societies and very large groups. That’s it’s something that is unchanged for generations, and therefore outside anyone’s control.

But culture also emerges when you have just a handful of people interacting. It describes what the group considers normal for making decisions, communicating, rewarding and punishing. On the other hand, group goals describe what they’re trying to do together, and processes describe how they go about it. Read the rest of this entry »

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I was working with others on the ICF-CO Fall Conference, where someone remarked, “You know, Fearless Leadership [the conference theme] isn’t about fear!”

So what IS it about? Well, here’s the answer …

Are you looking to speak to coaches and leaders in the Denver area?  You have two days left to submit your proposal!

deniz-altindas-38128Running a business is hard work, and you don’t have enough hours in the day. Big surprise! Your attention on self-care is one of the first things to go.

You know as well as I do that this is hurting the business. And it may well put you in the hospital at an early age.

So how do you maintain health and balance as a leader?

Physical health

Your mental state reflects your physical health. I’m not talking about extraordinary health care, either, just attending to health issues quickly, eating wisely and maintaining a good weight.

Read the rest of this entry »

tribesWho’s your tribe?

In 2008, Seth Godin wrote a powerful book titled, “Tribes: We Need You to Lead Us.” It digs into the concept of leadership by influence and attraction.

Some of the strongest leaders I work with have their own unique twist on this concept. Specifically, they map out the spheres of influence around their company’s mission.

This is powerful because businesses on a mission usually feel like they’re so unusual that nobody understands them. It starts feeling like nobody really cares.

That’s not true!

The fact is that if you’re working to make the world a better place — through people, products, services, or influence — that there are others who align with your values. They have a desire to help you succeed, even if they haven’t heard about you yet. Read the rest of this entry »

makalouI ran across a really good article today about the three toughest conversations that a manager needs to have with an employee or leader:

  • Delayed terminations
  • Companies outgrowing their leaders
  • Rumors about compensation

So go check out Meg Makalou’s advice – well worth a few minutes of your time!

handshakeAnything significant is a commitment before it is actually done.

Let’s think about that for a moment. Why is it true? Because we make progress by deciding to do something first.

Perhaps it’s a commitment to yourself: I’m going to clean up the yard. I’m going to have that conversation I’ve been avoiding. I’m going to get that job done this afternoon.

Read the rest of this entry »

Source: James on Flickr

Source: James on Flickr

I hate to say this, but you might not be doing everything perfectly.  Sorry to break the news!

But this isn’t about making you feel guilty about all the stuff that you’re behind on.  You already have enough pressure there, and it’s probably stressing you out.

When we look at the big picture, the leader’s job is to define the direction and then to set the organization up for success.  Other people can do the details, but it’s the person in charge who is uniquely qualified to do these two things.

Read the rest of this entry »

It’s springtime! Time to poke your head out and look around a little!

I’m seeing a wealth of opportunities now for people to connect with peers, to get inspired, and to bring in some new ideas. Plus, for many, the energy has changed as the kids get out of school and we have more family time.

Small giants summitIn June, I’ll be reporting from the Small Giants Summit in Denver. That’s a great forum for business owners dedicated to changing the world through powerful, focused, and profitable business practices.

Sum+subThen the following week, Conscious Capitalism is sponsoring the local Sum+Substance event – a fresh and inspiring take on the TED talks that people know and love so much.

In July, you can catch the Quid Novi Summer Jams, a great chance to connect with innovators and business leaders in Fort Collins.

Jams_webThese are just a few of the creative gatherings which can help bring fresh ideas into your business. And, of course, take advantage of Denver Startup Week in September and whatever is going on in your particular industry.

Learn a lot, have fun, meet some great people, and drink some local brews!

It’s going to be a wonderful summer!


This article was first published in InnovatioNews.

graphI’ve been putting together a workshop at the local SBDC next week about incorporating mission and values into your business.  There’s a breakthrough concept that can be applied here which changes how you achieve your goals.

In business, we have assumptions that:

  • If it can’t be measured, it won’t get done.
  • Everything has to be measured in numbers, preferably with a dollar sign in front.

When I state it this bluntly, you can see where the fallacy is.  Can you imagine measuring your personal happiness this way?

Read the rest of this entry »

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