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Metrics That Matter

metrics

If an organization wants to be successful they should have some sort of performance metrics in place. Metrics are a set of measurable numbers and goals for teams, organizations and individuals to meet. These metrics help to identify where you are and provide a real success numbers to shoot for. Although many metrics are financially based and financially driven, they can cover a plethora of other areas as long as they are tied to organization, stakeholder and customer needs.

Some metrics drive employees so much and so hard that they miss the metrics that matter. Yes the profit increased, yes the sales increased, yes the attendance increased… and yes unfortunately you have some team members that are winning at work while dying at home. Metrics are good; however it’s important to measure the things that matter and don’t overlook the seemingly unimportant metrics of “work happiness, job satisfaction and quality of life.”

If you want to know the things that matter, ask your employees. If you want to see the value of measuring the things that matter, take a look at the successful organizations that rank at the top of the best places to work type lists.

Metrics are great, Metrics that matter are greater.

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The Most Important Leadership Quality Is Self-Awareness

self-awarenessOften times leaders are looking for ways to improve their overall leadership. They try different styles, different approaches and try to mimic certain qualities. The most over-looked and The Most Important Leadership Quality Is Self-Awareness. If a leader wants to improve and become more effective, the best thing they can do is improve in the area of self-awareness. Self-awareness is the most important and most crucial component in becoming a more effective leader.

Self-awareness can help a leader to not only understand their decision making, it will allow them to understand what motivates those around them. Self-awareness allows leaders to effectively balance the tension tension of humility and boldness, fun environment and professionalism, flexibility and control, receiving advice and giving advice and the list goes on and on.

To become more self-aware individuals should consider taking various tests, such as: personality inventories, attribute indicators, spiritual gift analysis, style of influence inventories etc. These tests can become great tools to accelerate the self-awareness process. You can definitely become self-aware without them; however these tests can expedite the process. Similar to a car manual, you can find out all of the intricacies of what a car does, how it functions, the nuances of the technology etc. by simply fumbling and finding. If you read the manual it gets you to an understanding a great deal quicker and with less error.

Another way to improve self-awareness is to solicit feedback. Not the “Oh everything is great feedback” but rather the authentic, candid, this is how it is, this is what you are doing that’s not working feedback. Feedback meetings, 360° evaluations and other regular feedback methods are always helpful. Create a feedback culture of seeking feedback often and receiving feedback well. I repeat “Receiving Feedback Well.” If you don’t receive feedback well, people won’t give feedback at all.

The bottom line is self-awareness drives success. The self-aware leader will understand their limitations and hire compliments to reach ultimate success. The self-aware leader will look in the mirror in times of limitation and failure instead of always pointing the blame at others. The self-aware leader will make an effort to make those around them better, because they understand the value of a successful team. The self-aware leader knows when to defer, when to take risks, when to make changes, when to charge the hill and when to quit.

There is nothing worse than a well read, smart, articulate leader who can’t lead themselves out of a paper bag simply because they lack self-awareness. They always find themselves swimming up stream, fighting uphill battles and struggling to gain momentum. These struggles are facilitated from their inability have proper self-awareness, limited understanding of how to maximize their giftings and no clue how to truly get the most out of those around them.

If you want to be a good leader read the books, study the trends, look at the research… If you want to be a great leader read yourself, study yourself and look at what the research says about yourself. An organization or team will never rise above the self-awareness level of the leader.

The Most Important Leadership Quality Is Self-Awareness.

What do you think? Share your thoughts and experiences with self-awareness or the lack there of.

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10 Leadership Lessons From Tim Duncan’s Career

tim duncanWell the NBA Finals wrapped up with the unlikely San Antonio Spurs missing the opportunity to win their 5th title. I say unlikely because everyone including them Heat themselves had pretty much crowned the Miami Heat as the 2013 NBA Champions before the season even started. Well, the Heat were tested throughout the playoffs and passed every test, even the test of the well-coached Spurs.

Even though the Spurs lost and Duncan missed a point blank shot, he will go down as one of the greatest NBA Superstars ever. Not to mention a SuperStar who shined bright like a diamond while staying outside of the spotlight. Here are 10 Leadership Lessons From Tim Duncan’s Career.

  • 1. Substance Over Style “The Big Fundamental” Looking good is great, performing great is better. Duncan doesn’t win the style contest, but he is a straight up winner.
  • 2. Greatness Is Appreciated More When It’s Gone – Tim Duncan’s Game, Career and Place in history won’t be appreciated until he’s retired and gone.
  • 3. Great Leaders Know When To Defer – Duncan has admittedly turned the team over to Tony Parker, which has extended his career and allowed him to continue his greatness.
  • 4. You Can’t Care What People Think – Duncan doesn’t get the commercials, the shoes, the endorsements… He just gets the trophies. Duncan could care less what people think about his personality or lack there of, all he does is win.
  • 5. Classy over Sassy – Tim Duncan is one of the classiest players in the NBA. It’s hard not to like classy… when in doubt, keep it classy.
  • 6. Quietly Be The Best At What You Do – Tim Duncan will quietly go down as one of the best power forwards to ever play the game. Period, the end.
  • 7. Nice Guys Don’t Finish Last – Nice guys finish wherever they want to finish, Duncan is nice and he doesn’t finish last. 🙂
  • 8. Get Better With Age – They say some things get better with age, great leaders get better, lead better, play better and make better decisions with age. Duncan seems to get better the older that he gets.
  • 9. Know How To Lead Up – Duncan plays for a tough coach and he’s one of the few players that knows how to lead up, talk to Popovich, how to handle him in the media and how to lead up. There is an art to leading up and Duncan figured it out.
  • 10. Make Those Around You Better – Duncan makes his teammates, his coach, his city, his community and the NBA better.

What do you think? Share your thoughts on these lessons, Duncan’s contributions and add other lessons to the list.

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10 Things You Need To Stop and Start Doing

stop 2Stop focusing on what people think about you and start focusing on what God thinks about you.

Stop majoring in the minors and start majoring in the majors.

Stop making excuses about why you can’t make it happen and start making it happen.

Stop settling and start demanding.

Stop pointing out the negatives and start pointing out the positives.

Stop putting things of until tomorrow and start doing them today.

Stop looking in the mirror and saying I can’t and start looking in the mirror and saying I can.

Stop looking backwards and start looking forwards.

Stop being fearful and start being fearless.

Stop believing the worst and start believing the best.

Stop it, Stop it, Stop it…

 

What needs to be added to this list?

 

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Dancing Little Ceasars Man

We were on our way home from practice and saw this guy dancing… I almost stopped and got some Little Ceasars. I had to stop and catch a quick recording.

Do these dancing on the corner folks convince you to buy a product? Where have you seen the most entertaining corner dancer.

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10 Ways To Identify A “Not-So-Good” Leader

bad leaderMost of us have worked for leaders that are for all intents and purposes are not so good. Personally, I learned a lot in my early days of leadership from some not-so-good and really bad leaders. Not only were they bad leaders, they were oblivious to the negative affects of their poor leadership. There are many ways to identify a not-so-good leader and I have identified 10 ways below.

The reason I attribute these ways of a “Not-So-Good Leader” is due to the fact that a leader has to at least reach the mantle of being a “Good Leader” before they can ever be a “Great Leader.”  Here are 10 Ways To Identify A Not-So-Good Leader:

  • 1. They are not willing to fail.
  • 2. They only talk and never listen.
  • 3. They don’t develop and produce other leaders.
  • 4. They micro-manage (that’s management not leadership).
  • 5. They are insecure or threatened by some of the individuals they lead.
  • 6. They are not willing to follow and learn from individuals they lead.
  • 7. They are focused on pleasing people and what people think. (More concerned with looking good than doing the right thing)
  • 8. They don’t genuinely care about the people they lead and have difficulty getting people to willingly follow.
  • 9. They are willing to make the wrong decision, because of the fear of  fall-out from making the right decision.
  • 10. They only dream about being like so and so, instead of being the best they can be.

Bonus: They either “don’t do” or “are not working towards” the 5 Things Next-Level Leaders Alaways Do!

Share your thoughts on any of these “10 Ways” and add to the list!

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The History of Father’s Day and 5 Father’s Day Scriptures

fathers dayThe Inspiration For Father’s Day Came From a Sermon

Anna Jarvis is recognized as the founder, campaigner and promoter of Mother’s Day in the US. Due to its success, some wanted to create similar holidays for other family members, and Father’s Day was the choice most likely to succeed.

There were a number of people in the US who independently thought of “Father’s Day”; however the credit for the modern holiday is often given to one young lady, who was the driving force behind its establishment. Father’s Day was founded in Spokane, Washington, at the YMCA in 1910 by Mrs. Sonora Smart Dodd. Its first celebration was in the Spokane YMCA on June 19, 1910. Sonora’s father, the Civil War veteran William Jackson Smart, was a single parent who raised his six children there. After hearing a sermon about Jarvis’ Mother’s Day in 1909, she told her pastor that fathers should have a similar holiday honoring them. Although she initially suggested June 5, her father’s birthday, the pastors did not have enough time to prepare their sermons, and the celebration was deferred to the third Sunday of June.

A bill to accord national recognition of the holiday was introduced in Congress in 1913. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson went to Spokane to speak in a Father’s Day celebration and wanted to make it official, but Congress resisted, fearing that it would become commercialized. US President Calvin Coolidge recommended in 1924 that the day be observed by the nation, but stopped short of issuing a national proclamation. Two earlier attempts to formally recognize the holiday had been defeated by Congress. In 1957, Maine Senator Margaret Chase Smith wrote a proposal accusing Congress of ignoring fathers for 40 years while honoring mothers, thus “singling out just one of our two parents”. In 1966, President Lyndon B. Johnson issued the first presidential proclamation honoring fathers, designating the third Sunday in June as Father’s Day. Six years later, the day was made a permanent national holiday when President Nixon signed it into law in 1972.

5 Father’s Day Scriptures

A Father’s Direction

3 Hear therefore, O Israel, and be careful to do them, that it may go well with you, and that you may multiply greatly, as the Lord, the God of your fathers, has promised you, in a land flowing with milk and honey. 4 “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. 6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7 You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. 8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates. 10 “And when the Lord your God brings you into the land that he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give you—with great and good cities that you did not build, 11 and houses full of all good things that you did not fill, and cisterns that you did not dig, and vineyards and olive trees that you did not plant—and when you eat and are full, 12 then take care lest you forget the Lord, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. 13 It is the Lord your God you shall fear. Him you shall serve and by his name you shall swear. Deuteronomy 6:3-13 ESV

Pursuit Of Happiness

13-14 Don’t be afraid to correct your young ones; a spanking won’t kill them. A good spanking, in fact, might save them from something worse than death. 15-16 Dear child, if you become wise, I’ll be one happy parent. My heart will dance and sing to the tuneful truth you’ll speak. Proverbs 23:13-16 MSG

Children Should Obey and Fathers Should Not Provoke

1 Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. 2 “Honor your father and mother” (this is the first commandment with a promise), 3 “that it may go well with you and that you may live long in the land.” 4 Fathers, do not provoke your children to anger, but bring them up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord. Ephesians 6:1-4 ESV

Get In Touch With Reality

1-3 God’s Message to Joel son of Pethuel: Attention, elder statesmen! Listen closely, everyone, whoever and wherever you are! Have you ever heard of anything like this? Has anything like this ever happened before—ever? Make sure you tell your children, and your children tell their children, And their children their children. Don’t let this message die out. 4 What the chewing locust left, the gobbling locust ate; What the gobbling locust left, the munching locust ate; What the munching locust left, the chomping locust ate. Joel 1:1-4 MSG

Rules For Christian Homes

18 Wives, submit to your husbands, as is fitting in the Lord.19Husbands, love your wives, and do not be harsh with them. 20 Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. 21 Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged. Colossians 3:18-21

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Apple Introducing iOS 7 – Official Video

This makes me smile. 🙂 Cheers

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Stop Avoiding Criticism

aristotleCriticism is a one of those words that seems to cut most people like a knife. Although the knife doesn’t seem as sharp when we put the word “constructive” in front of the word criticism; none-the-less the word still seems to pierce.

When I was growing up my mom would always tell me: “Son, you can’t control or worry about what people say… you can only control what you say and what you do.”  Later on in life, as a young leader I had a mentor that would always say “If you’re doing something worthy of people taking shots at you… they will. I would much rather have a leader that people don’t always understand and who are occasionally criticized, than a “leader” that no one ever talks about.”  I’ve heard my pastor in the past say something like “If you want to find the leader, look for the one with the arrow in their back!”

Don’t get me wrong, sometimes criticism is necessary. It’s important to have the people closest to you speak candidly into your life and seek wise counsel from those who will shoot you straight. It’s important to view criticism as neutral, “It Is What It Is!” This neutral mindset allows you to be comfortable with, “Eating The Meat and Spitting Out The Bones!” It will also help you Stop Avoiding Criticism.

If you don’t want to be criticized, follow these 3 Easy Steps To Avoid Criticism outlined by Greek philosopher Aristotle:

  • 1. Say Nothing
  • 2. Do Nothing
  • 3. Be Nothing

If you want to silence the critics, be yourself and do the right thing.

It is not the critic who counts, not the man who points out how the strong man stumbled, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes short again and again, who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, and spends himself in a worthy cause, who at best knows achievement and who at the worst if he fails at least fails while daring greatly so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who know neither victory nor defeat.” ~Theodore Roosevelt

I don’t ever want to find myself in the place with those “Cold and Timid Souls.”

Stop Avoiding Criticism Silence The Critics!

Why are people so quick to avoid criticism? Share Your Thoughts.

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7 Deadly Sins Of Leadership

7 deadly leadership

7 Deadly Sins Of Leadership

Pride – Don’t have excessive belief in your own leadership abilities. Don’t allow your confidence to overshadow your understanding that you did not get to where you are on your own. You must recognize God’s grace and the help from others. Pride is referred to as the sin where all other sins arise, pride will jump-start your leadership into a pit of failure. Don’t become a prideful Mr. or Mrs. Big-Shot Leader. “First pride, then the crash — the bigger the ego, the harder the fall.” Proverbs 16:18 MSG

Envy – Don’t sit around and wish and ponder and hope and ponder some more about how you can get what others have. Stop secretly desiring others’ traits, status, abilities, or their situation. If you find yourself always thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence, maybe it’s time that you start watering and fertilizing your own grass.

Gluttony – Stop over-consuming leadership books, conferences, blogs, thoughts, quotes etc. If you would simply begin applying what you already know and what you have already learned, all of the other leadership information and stimulation will simply be a nice bonus. Application of existing knowledge is a better starting place than over-consumption of knowledge. You will find yourself educated beyond your obedience to simply do what you already know and do what is right.

Lust – Don’t fall victim to inordinate craving for the pleasures of your body. As a leader you are the example, remove the thoughts, stop the flirting, be a leader above reproach and if you find your self in a situation that you can’t handle, remove yourself from the situation. Lust leads to a path of leadership destruction.

Anger – No one wants to work for or with a crazy, angry, mean, bad tempered and angry leader. “Good-tempered leaders invigorate lives; they’re like spring rain and sunshine.” Proverbs 16:15 MSG

Greed – Don’t have an exceeding desire for material wealth or gain so much so that it rules you and drives your every decision. You find yourself wanting the promotion, the job and the stuff simply because you want “Mo Money!” In the words of the famous historian The Notorious BIG “Mo Money, Mo Problems.” Money and things are not wrong or evil… loving those things and allowing them to become your idol is the problem. Don’t fall in love with those things, be generous and always remember Who is the ultimate giver of those things.

Sloth – As a leaders it is important to be an example of physical, emotional and spiritual health. People listen to the teachings and leadership that you live way more than the leadership that you speak. Talk isn’t necessarily cheap; however actions are definitely more valuable. It’s difficult to get up and talk about discipline, decisions and priorities when your priorities are out of alignment.

Share your thoughts and experiences with any of the 7 Deadly Sins of Leadership. Add some additional to the list.

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