Looking forward to my two human resources (HR) workshops at the “HR Communication Strategies Conference” in Chicago in March. I’ll be focusing on team performance/building and managing others (up, down, across and in teams/groups).
You can get my free team building and performance game at cardsagainstMundanity.com We’ll be playing it at the conference.
Fantastic day today with the team at Utility Concierge conducting my workshop on building the highest performing teams (both internally & third parties such as customers/prospects). We also played my game, Cards Against Mundanity, so people could experience why the information will work for them. It significantly increased trust, team closeness & engagement in an hour (measured via survey).
More than 10,000+ have played the game including companies such as Amazon, Google, Southwest Airlines, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Ernst & Young, Gillette, Phillips May, Worldwide Express, PRSA, SHRM, and many others.
“People will tell you where they’ve gone. They’ll tell you where to go. But till you get there yourself. You never really know.”
Don’t just dream of success. Make it happen. Don’t be a talker, be a doer.
I’m going to walk you through how to create exponential progress (versus incremental) with a three-tier model. Along the way, you’ll get the evidence you need to reach whatever goal/milestone you want.
It’s also easy to replicate and you can apply it to anything to you do, personally and professionally.
It’s essentially what the best of the best do (broken down) so anyone can use it. It’s taken from more than 2,000 interviews I’ve conducted over the past 10 years.
But….you will have to deal with ambiguity and lack of evidence along the way. There is no way around it. But the key to navigating it is asking questions.
I’m going to use running as an example.
I love running. But even more, I enjoy the social aspect and the competition (to push myself to be my best version of me).
Running a marathon and running one the best you can is a true test of your soul, spirit, and mind. It’s way more than physical. And it’s five times harder than a half marathon.
I’m not talking just running it, I’m talking about pushing yourself to run your best. That makes it even harder than running a marathon.
Lot of people talk about running a marathon. They talk strategy, running plans, nutrition, etc. But you can’t know what it really takes FOR YOU to train for a marathon until you actually do it.
Why? Because every person is different. There isn’t one answer. You have to be able to live in ambiguity. You have to try different things. Test and measure them. You have to manage pain and injuries. It’s managing time along with your other commitments.
What I’ve found is a three tier model that will help you make massive progress in days/months that will take another person years or decades or possibly never. It’s pure gold for leaders, managers, and entrepreneurial types (venture capitalists, private equity, real estate investors, etc).
It has helped me make massive progress for someone who never ran before. My first marathon I ran 3:40 in Chicago, 11 months after I started running. And I never really had run before.
It will work for you in business and your career.
1) Modeling best practices
2) Coaching / Mentorship (essentially getting experts to help you)
3) Support from people who actually know what you are doing. (I.e. entrepreneur needs to talk to other entrepreneurs. CEOs need to talk to other CEOs).
How I applied it (which required me to be very inquisitive along the way):
I found the best running group for me in Dallas with dedicated runners. I asked them every conceivable question as I started running. And I’m still asking. I’m also reading, listening to podcasts, etc. I’m then implementing the information (not just listening to it for entertainment).
I got a coach for four months. It really helped. Then I found people in my running group that helped me train and set up a plan (and even run with me). I researched training plans and I’m using one I love.
My running group is my support. I’ve made some great friends there. They know the toll it can take on you. I don’t need to give them a long explanation of what’s going on. They just know it by looking at me.
Putting those three pieces together will help me get to run the Boston Marathon, which is my overall goal years faster than the vast majority of people. Very few people will qualify in 18 months after they just started running (for the first time ever).
MAJOR MAJOR Caveat: There are three parts of this model that will trip people up.
Ambiguity. There isn’t one truth. There isn’t single right way. There is only imperfect action that you will need to learn from and pivot off of.
You need someone to show you how to fish and then learn how to fish yourself. Coaching and mentorship will shave 5x to 20x the time it will take you to do anything. But the real question is can you do it the second time on your own? That’s where many coaches/mentors do a poor job and the people engaging with them. Your engagement is both to get immediate evidence/results (because as human beings we need to see that things are working), and educational (to learn how to actually do it and then do it to see if you can replicate the results).
Confidence and Competence Loop. This is a KEY principle to master. It goes like this…”If I only was more competent, I’d feel more confident.” Great, well then become more competent. Well, that’s not so easy. It typically requires a person to make a leap of faith (trying something new with no real evidence it will work for you). That requires a person to dive into uncertainty. That’s a place not many people are willing to go. But it’s a requirement to become more competent so you will FEEL more confident. Most people get stuck in this loop because they are waiting around for evidence to magically appear. Well, you will be waiting around for a LONG time (this is no fairy tale, it’s your life!)
You have to master the caveats as well as the three tier model to have massive success and massive progress.
But you won’t know it, until you do it. That will require you to deal with ambiguity, lack of evidence it’s working, doubt, fear, imposter syndrome, limiting beliefs, exacerbate your blind spots, and much more.
Just like your business and career, you need a plan and model to help you get there. And you won’t know it until you get there.
What are you willing to do to get what you really want? What are you are willing to do to be the best version of yourself?
Those are two pivotal questions I asked my last November. I’m glad I chose to take a leap of faith and just jump in.
How? I gave myself 15 minutes to come up with a personal goal. I chose to qualify for the Boston Marathon by July 1, 2019. Whether or not that happens is actually immaterial.
Why? Because it’s always more about the journey than the end point/goal. The journey of making process brings you the most joy, excitement and passion. 99.9% of the work is the journey. The icing on the cake is the end.
So whether I make it to Boston by July 1 or the following year doesn’t matter to me. Because I will. That’s a certainty.
Sometimes timing matters, but sometimes you make the time matter.
Now the Drum roll…I’m super duper excited to be running the New York CityMarathon in November. It’s a bucket list item for me.
I ran a virtual marathon in November to do it because I didn’t want to wait around and hope I would get in via lottery. It makes it even more memorable to do it this way. 17 week training plan starts in July, but I’ve got two marathons before it (Phoenix/Tunnel) so I’ll hit the ground running (literally) at full speed.
A year ago I was just starting my running journey and finished the Dallas 2017 half marathon (my first race). I hit a “wall” at mile 11 and felt like I was “dying.” But I didn’t stop once, and powered through to finish in 1:53 with less than four weeks of running.
Time passes quickly!
Running has taught me many lessons.
One is the difference between feeling like doing something and actually doing it. Today, I didn’t feel like waking up to run 10 miles at 4am or run another 6pm tonight. I’m just doing it. I’m in charge not my thoughts or feelings.
Two, the thing standing between you and what you want, is you. You will move mountains through grit, determination, passion and just doing the best you can do that day. It’s about taking imperfect action versus none at all. I never thought I could run a marathon, let alone two. I never thought I could run it in 3:37, six weeks after my first one. I never thought I could run almost 1900 miles my first year running.
Most running days weren’t great. But the great days are built upon a foundation of shitty days I didn’t want to run or I just didn’t have that much to give.
Moral of the story is find “your thing” and make it happen. YOU are the only one that can do it. YOU are a superstar. YOU CAN do it. The ONLY question is will you do it or look back and wish you would have tried. The choice is always yours and every day you can make a new one!
What are you willing to do to get what you really want?
You won’t figure it out it thinking about it. Take imperfect action today.
Your level of “self-awareness” is ceiling on your career/business success, management, leadership and relationship abilities and overall happiness.
Let me explain why.
Oprah talked about this last year in an interview (about her business journey).
“If you’re not talking about the trauma (and unconscious patterns sabotaging your success), you’re talking about the wrong thing. It’s not about “what’s wrong with that person?” but rather “What happened to that person?””
Every person eventually hits their ceiling where their skills/abilities tap out, which leads to much lower performance and negative outcomes.
The only way to break through is to understand the root problems of why you are stuck (which includes pattern analysis to understand how you got there either through learned behaviors and/or trauma (which can be anything that caused you pain)).
The CEO who is a poor listener and doesn’t take feedback may lack information on how to do it. They may also have grown up in a household of six children where they had to shout over people to get heard. So they learned listening wasn’t useful.
If you just gave the CEO feedback, they’d often reject it because our mind is wired for survival (ie don’t tell me I’m broken). If you point out a pattern, you don’t engage your fight/flight part of your brain and they won’t often reject it.
You then can create very subtle/simple solutions to remove this barrier. Things such as talking last in meetings, asking more why questions in conversations, practicing empathy, etc.
You’ll instantly be back on track major significant progress.
But if you don’t, you’ll this ceiling will crater your life as it leads to bringing to rock bottom.
100% of people will go through this. The difference is who takes action and who doesn’t.