4 Steps to Master the Art of Hiring Smarter

This question is for the senior executive team to ask themselves or an HR discussion with the executive team: "Are we tolerating less than ‘A’ player performance, perhaps by not clearly defining ‘A’ performance?  Or by letting ‘B’ performers slide even with clear performance objectives?  Or by allowing personalities inside or outside of work influence [...]

Can You Handle the Truth?

Seeking the truth. Finding the truth. Facing the truth. Communicating the truth. It takes an extraordinary commitment to the truth to seek it and frankly not everyone is interested. Some people like their own version of reality just fine, thank you. It’s hard to make a difference with these people. Serious truth seekers don’t fit [...]

Right People in the Right Seats, Please

Remember this premise from Jim Collins in his book Good to Great? “When we began the research project, we expected to find that the first step in taking a company from good to great would be to set a new direction, a new vision and strategy for the company, and then to get people committed [...]

Overcome Your Resignation – Hire ‘A’ Players

Would you admit to any of the litany of excuses for why you can’t get, find or employ ‘A’ Players in your organization? • Hope maybe Jack will improve over time. He just needs better (fill in the blank). • I don’t want to admit a mistake to my board. (Read I don’t want to [...]

Listening is a Power Source for Leaders

As a facilitator of CEO business support groups, I held conversations with candidates for my groups to discern the likelihood that they would be good listeners.  I distinctly remember one CEO who told me, “I take only my own counsel.  No thank you.”  I had had candidates suggest it, carry that attitude, but never had [...]

Publicly Question your Assumptions — No, Really!

Here’s a proposition for you:  Take your leadership insecurities to your peer group for review.  Consider that sometimes when you are “being right” you are really being arrogant and it is costing you credibility. The downside of “being right,” when dealing with a subordinate, can be costly.  For example, if an employee isn’t feeling heard, [...]

“B” Players Hold Back Organizational Performance. Raise the bar!

In a presentation to about 50 CEOs, I asked them to list the characteristics of "A" players. Then I asked them to list the characteristics of "B" players — those employees who aren't high performing, who aren't excellent and who don't stand out.  They also aren’t obviously awful, unless you’re the “A” player picking up [...]

How Can Leaders Earn Your Trust?

Do you choose to work at a company because of exceptional leadership and trust in an individual or team?  Maybe you attend a particular church because of the minister and their leadership in the area of spirituality.  You might have joined a nonprofit because the leader was successful in enrolling you in the cause, and [...]

Employee Accountability: Fun Conversations without Scolding!

How do you have conversations for employee accountability inside your organization? What if we could bring fun, play and ease to the conversations we have about being accountable? Being the oldest of four children, I was appointed the babysitter.  It has taken me YEARS of committed introspection into the topic of accountability and what is [...]

Why Do A-Players Leave Voluntarily?

When it comes to employee engagement and retention, why would your A-Players leave your company voluntarily?  Hmmm... Let’s say an employee — let’s call him John — takes initiative to advance the team’s efforts to reach a goal.  After much convincing he had team alignment, but his name was all over this project. His idea [...]