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Popular Blog Posts

Networking During a Pandemic

Networking During a Pandemic

The time has come for you to figure out how you are going to enhance your online presence. Maybe you have dabbled here and there—sharing an article, liking a tweet, or posting some thoughts on LinkedIn. But now it’s time to get serious. With in-person networking curtailed by the coronavirus, your online presence is more important than ever. Maybe you have been reluctant to build an online presence because you don’t like the idea of selling yourself or feeling fake….

Two Paths to Better Meetings: The Subject and The People

I had a bunch of fantastic meetings today, said nobody, ever. Instead, people lament meetings for all their inefficiency, annoyingness, and, particularly in this virtual era—exhaustion. Wouldn’t your time be better spent doing work? Probably. But also, meetings help fill a fundamental human need—to belong to a group. The identity of a team is defined by who is at the meeting. The shared understanding of the situation is established and maintained in that group. And the focus and intent of…

A Quick Thinking Checklist

Thinking is a messy process. But, if you were to create a checklist to make it more organized and thorough, what would that look like? A good place to start would be to make sure your basic analytical thinking is in order. That’s the part where you gather information and data and then examine it carefully to make sure that you understand the component parts of something and how all the pieces fit together into the bigger picture. This would…

I Am Unqualified

Everything worthwhile that I have done started at a place of ignorance and inexperience. I have to remind myself of this each time I am faced with learning something new. It’s uncomfortable to confront the unknown and the unfamiliar, but it is always worth it—even if the payoff comes from hard lessons. I’ve always enjoyed riding bikes. Two-wheeled freedom was something I cherished in my youth and also rediscovered later in life. I enjoyed cycling so much that I joined…

The Tremendous Value of The Long Form

the value of the long form

Consider the difference between Edward Norton appearing on a late night talk show for 6 minutes to his podcast interview with Tim Ferriss that went on for 2 hours. One gives you a flavor about some snippet of his work and personality. The other gives you a deep dive into one of his most ambitious projects, a sense of the wide range of his accomplishments, and a clearer picture of his creativity and business savvy. In the full story of…

Time Alone is Essential to Great Teamwork

Strong Individuals Make Strong Teams

Paul McCartney and John Lennon were a great songwriting team. Their time together produced magic—but only because of the important work each did alone. One of them would create an idea or even an entire song before bringing it to the other, allowing the best of individuality and togetherness to shine through in the final product. I saw how time alone can make time together work better when I was teaching a marketing class at Bentley University. The same few…

The Two Sides of Professionalism

The Two Sides of Professionalism

If you were following the pallet industry news back in 2014, you would know that it was one wild ride. Wood costs and availability fluctuated dramatically. To offset the rising cost of pine, a manufacturer would switch to hardwood. But as the housing market rebounded from the Great Recession, hardwood prices soard. Innovative solutions were needed. Innovation is not so easy when the product is part of a complex supply chain made up of loggers, sawmills, remanufacturing operations, pallet manufacturers,…

How to Easily Build Powerful Time Management Habits for Your Team

How to Easily Build Powerful Time Management Habits for Your Team

It took me a while to learn that good time management isn’t about cramming tasks into my day–it’s about applying high quality time to my most important work. And that the best way to make this happen is with small habits. Habits make it easy to tackle routine work consistently. They also enhance the quality of my non-routine work. And they help me make the best use of a team’s time. Habits are powerful, but also a little tricky. Good…

Make a Great Plan in 4 Steps

If there is one thing I have learned from leading teams, it’s that the small insights carry the most power. And the best way to get those insights is through good old fashioned planning. Planning is the machine that converts ambiguity into action and action into success. No matter the undertaking, teams I lead have success in proportion to the quality of our planning. There are only a few simple steps to follow that always work, provided I trust my…

Leading Through Uncertainty

Your team, your boss, and a bunch of other people need you now more than ever. Because you have responsibility, knowledge, and insights that can be converted into decisions, directions, and support. These things are important all the time, and especially in uncertain times. And we have not seen times this uncertain in a long while, perhaps ever. The Coronavirus pandemic is a rapidly emerging worldwide shock to the system. That shock will ripple out for weeks and months to…