Crisis at 800 Feet

My wife, Jamie, woke me from a deep slumber with a panicked, “What happened to your neck?” Having been asleep for a few short hours and waking to a fair amount of pain, it took me a moment to respond. I quipped, “What are you talking about?” She pointed to the large bruise on the back of…

Read More

Lessons From Launching a Book

Today’s newsletter is going to be a little different. For the past few days, I have been traveling from event to event, promoting my new book, The Five-Week Leadership Challenge. From the first day I proposed the book to Harper Collins, to writing my first draft, to now, I have learned a lot. I’d like…

Read More

Why You Should be a Lifelong Learner

Imagine this: You just started at a new job. You’re excited. You want to make an impact. You hit the ground running. Over time, you build new relationships, deliver good results, and make a name for yourself. A few weeks pass. Weeks become months. Months become years. You grow comfortable…too comfortable If you see yourself…

Read More

Embrace the White Space

In my role at Vanderbilt University, I often talk to students about their career aspirations. Most of those discussions involve a brief exchange about my experience and the decisions I’ve made throughout my career. I typically share two things about my work life. The first focuses on the information that is on my resume –…

Read More

Sometimes You Need to Take Two Steps Back

I recently had surgery on my left arm. The procedure was designed to fix a pinched nerve that has caused my hand to be essentially numb for the last five months. At the same time, I’m planning to climb Mount Elbrus, the highest point in Europe, with my son and son-in-law this summer. They’ve already…

Read More

Amazon Tops Advertising List as the Strategic Wolf is on the Prowl

Ad Age’s Datacenter reports that Amazon spent $11 billion on advertising in 2019 That makes it the world’s largest advertiser topping Billion-Dollar Brand Builder Proctor & Gamble that is a perennial placeholder at the top of the chart. Amazon has been a regular topic of discussion in my marketing and strategy classes at Vanderbilt University. It wasn’t…

Read More

Changing Lanes

Many years ago, I earned a speeding ticket. I say I earned it because I was driving too fast and there’s a natural consequence for driving too fast especially when a police officer is present – you earn a ticket. The paperwork stated that I could either pay a fine or go to a driver’s…

Read More

Find Your Path

The vast majority of my career has been spent being developed to lead others, leading others, or developing others to lead. Throughout much of that time, we would be led down a fairly prescriptive path. To be a leader, you’d have to have this experience, go to this course, take this job, etc. There was…

Read More

4 Reasons That You Should Start a Business Today

Every semester, I invite entrepreneurs into my classroom at Vanderbilt University to share their stories with my students, partner with student teams to address business challenges, and receive recommendations about how to improve their businesses, drive growth, and better position themselves in the marketplace. Using these experiences as a backdrop, coupled with my own business…

Read More