Listening with the Grain

This Week’s Thought Great leaders listen with the grain of a conversation. Their intent is to understand and learn from others, not to merely confirm what the leader already believes or to deliver a pre-determined response. This past weekend, I attended a talk given by English poet, pastor, and academic Dr. Malcolm Guite. He is…

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IDK

Today’s Thought Your success is directly tied to how effectively you communicate with others. Talking in shorthand is helpful, but only to the extent that both parties understand the jargon, acronyms, or phrases. When our daughter, Alex, turned 13 years old, my wife, Jamie, and I bought her a cell phone. Getting the phone was…

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Veiled Responses

Patrick’s Weekly Leadership Tip Forget getting people to say ‘yes’ to your requests. Get them to say ‘that’s right.’ The former might be a response intended to avoid a situation. The latter is a sign of true commitment. Imagine that you are the lead negotiator handling an international hostage situation. After hours of negotiation, the…

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Leaving Good Performers in the Dark

Patrick’s Weekly Leadership Tip: Don’t fall into the negativity trap. This is when you only provide feedback to people when they make mistakes or fall short. Make it your mission to catch people doing things right.   I recently delivered a virtual presentation to an international audience. During a pre-event call two weeks before the…

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Shake It Off

Klay Thompson didn’t play basketball for 941 days, but now he and his Golden State Warriors teammates are heading to the NBA finals. ESPN described his reaction when the finals were in sight, “As the clock ticked down the final seconds, Klay Thompson began dancing on the sideline before nearly being moved to tears during a celebration…

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The 5 C’s of Consitency

As humans, there’s one thing that we all struggle with: consistency. You might do the right thing one day and go in a completely different direction the next day. Sometimes, especially as leaders, we get frustrated and ask ourselves: Why wasn’t I more consistent in having one-on-one conversations with my people this week? Why didn’t…

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Fan the Flames of Success

This past weekend, I went to a family wedding. During the reception dinner, my siblings and I posed for a picture. As I smiled for the photo, I saw our dad across the table, watching us take the picture. He was smiling too. I imagine that his smile stemmed from observing four of his children…

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Empty Your Mind

I don’t know about you, but sometimes I have a lot on my mind. If I’m not careful, then pending deadlines, pressing issues, personal commitments, and my grocery list will take up simultaneous residence in my grey matter. When this happens, their good friends, anxiety and distraction, aren’t far behind.   I recently had the…

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