No Goals – Just Do What You Want

Do you know anyone who strives to be average? While few people admit this is true, about half of us do. And, of course, the same is true of companies and organizations because they are only as good as their people. What I have observed is that average and below average performers either do not have goals or their goals are flawed or their goals do not inspire them. One symptom of goal absence or weakness is when people do what they want to do before they do what they need to do. Do What You Need to Do First.  [...]

By |2018-01-02T20:15:02-05:00October 12th, 2017|Goals / Objectives, Planning|

I Wish My Dreams and Goals Would Come True

This morning there are many happy Chicago Cubs fans. Their dream and millions of wishes have come true - they are baseball’s world champions for the first time in 108 years. We are a dream and wish society. When we are children we are encouraged to “dream big” and “reach for the stars.” As adults we are offered racks full of encouraging books and many programs that teach us how to achieve our dreams. While many of these are wonderful and help us feel good, once the day’s reality sets in and distract us, our dreams often fade into the [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:54:47-04:00November 3rd, 2016|Goals / Objectives|

Working Smarter – Five Tips

Sometimes I just work stupid. Last week I was trying to do too many things at the same time and a funny thing happened.  I was trying to coordinate a phone conference with one of our vendors, who I’ll call Sally, and our wires got crossed.  Sally sent me an e-mail asking what number she should use to call me. I wrote an answer to her while speaking with someone else and I was clearly distracted. Sally didn’t call me on time, which surprised me because she is very prompt. After another e-mail exchange I called her and we connected. [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:54:48-04:00July 13th, 2016|Goals / Objectives|

What is Holding You Back?

Three things happen every January. First, the foot traffic in my health club increases immensely. Second, everywhere I turn I see articles about how you can better achieve your New Year’s resolutions. And, third, by the end of the month the health club foot traffic returns to normal. All of us have important changes we should make personally and at work, but we struggle. I guess this is just part of being human. One thoughtful writer I enjoy is James Clear. A few weeks ago he wrote an article called The Akrasia Effect: Why We Don’t Follow Through on What [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:54:51-04:00January 28th, 2016|Goals / Objectives, Planning|

How are Leadership and Hope Connected?

I’ve been asked recently in two interviews, “If you could have dinner with any historic figure, who it would be?” And I always give the same answer, “Abraham Lincoln.” Finally, last night, that dream came true. Well, almost. Patti and I saw the movie Lincoln and I thought I was with him. (What a performance by Daniel Day Lewis; he’s got to win Best Actor.) While the movie is about how Lincoln strategically pushed for passage of the 13th amendment, which outlawed slavery, it is also a story about how an effective leader inspires followers by giving them hope. And [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:55:39-04:00January 28th, 2013|Goals / Objectives, Planning|

Do You Really Know the Goal?

  Okay, so how did you do last year, did you achieve your goals? When I ask people this question I notice often they wander off and change the subject. Then they talk about their “resolutions” for 2013 and avoid talking about last year. I wonder why? Maybe it’s because they didn’t have any goals. Perhaps they didn’t write them down or can’t remember them. Or maybe what they did accomplish somehow disappoints them now. It is possible they really don’t care; they just take it day by day (I really do envy these folks!) Whatever the reason, if someone [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:55:39-04:00January 28th, 2013|Goals / Objectives, Planning|

Do You Know When to Stop?

I was sailing this week on a New Hampshire lake our family has been going to for over 100 years. When the wind stopped, my boat was becalmed about 200 feet from Bull Dog Rock, arguably the most prominent land feature on the lake. It was a quiet day and I could completely listen to the conversations taking place between five, early teenage boys as they explored and decided whether to jump off Bull Dog. Bull Dog Rock was featured on the left of this photo in Forest Notes a few years ago. It, along with 1,750 acres of land, [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:55:40-04:00September 6th, 2012|Goals / Objectives, Planning|

A 2012 Leadership Resolution – Stop Deceiving Yourself

I wonder how many leaders actually make New Year’s resolutions about their own behavior. Every year in January many of us make New Year’s resolutions. Admit it, you’ve probably made some yourself: I’m going to lose 10 pounds or I’m going to stop smoking or I’m going to learn how to use Facebook. Usually these resolutions are personal in nature and are aimed at self-improvement. However, when was the last time you made a resolution to improve one or more of your own behaviors that is having a negative effect on others you are leading? Example – Jack leaves his [...]

By |2017-05-19T19:55:41-04:00April 10th, 2012|Goals / Objectives, Planning|