Followers first

“Invest more of who you are in what you do.”  Jim Rohn

I have observed the fastest and most effective way to build credibility with the people you hope to lead.  Make sure they never question your full commitment to their success.


Porcupine personality

“If you will change, everything will change for you.”  Earl Shoaff

Some professionals have the porcupine effect on others.  An encounter with them will leave you with painful prickly quills,vowing to avoid them at all cost in the future.  Funny thing is, they often do not realize they’re so prickly or that people drift quietly away from them.  And, when they do have a glimpse of it, they’ll rationalize it away as the other persons problem.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking you could be more effective and successful if only you had more competent people around you. Effectiveness and being surrounded with more capable people has more to do with you, than it does with them.

When it comes to attracting and leading high performing talent, remember this:

  • People over the “principle of the thing”
  • Factor in feelings or the facts won’t matter
  • Clothe every directive with empathy
  • Helping is more productive than determined inquisition

And, while we’re on the subject,  if you know you have a porcupine effect on colleagues and staff, just change.  Today!


3 tips for really smart professionals

Exasperated with one of his top producing partners who demeaned a director in front of team members, the Managing Partner declared, “he always has to be the smartest guy in the room.”

Being smart, accomplished and successful in the professional service firm can be a burden.  In some, it produces an impatience with those who are not quite as quick or capable.  You will here them say things like, “I just can’t work with ‘B’ players.”

Here are a few tips for those who have to be the smartest guy in the room:

  1. Everything does not revolve around you. Sorry, but it’s true.  When you have this kind of self-focus you alienate yourself.  Play smart and stop it.
  2. You’re not an accomplice to ignorance (necessarily). I know, your staff reflects on you, but don’t take their mistakes so personal.
  3. Give a compliment to a colleague or staff member on their win or success daily. An authentic leader shows happiness for others’ accomplishments in genuine and sincere expressions.

If you have to be the smartest guy in the room, be smart about it.  Lift others.