Category Archives: Life

Find your next Everest

In business (or life, for that matter) it’s not enough to just climb Everest. Climbing Everest is a great goal that takes years of training and dedication (and money) to accomplish. But what do you do once you’ve climbed Everest? If you’re a serious climber, you find another peak. You find another Everest.

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Having a goal is great. Having a set of goals is great. However, you should always be ready with the next goal. What’s the next mountain you plan to climb?

Oh, and just a heads up, I’m pretty sure I borrowed this idea from John Maxwell. However, the Everest metaphor is all mine.

 

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They say before you start a war…

…you better know what you’re fighting for.

When you correct someone’s grammar on twitter, what are you fighting for?

What are you fighting for when you slam a business on Facebook?

When you gossip or spread rumors (and I’m great at both), what’s your war?

Twitter

Actual tweet. Possibly starting a war.

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The Path Towards Progress

Progress is typically defined by forward momentum. Is a company moving forward? Is a person moving on? Is an organization taking progressive steps? The question should really be, is growth taking place?

Progress should not be defined by the number of steps taken forward, but by the number of steps retraced for the sake of learning. Growth and progress always come with bumps and bruises. Mistakes will happen. External forces will work against us. Which means that sometimes, in order to achieve progress, reflection on those mistakes must take place. Although the goal should be to avoid as many mistakes as possible, they will happen. Progress will only take place when learning from those mistakes has occured.

Thomas Edison said it best, “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” With each failed attempt, Edison couldn’t just start over. He looked at what was done, why it didn’t work, and then tried again. Progress.

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Say what you are saying

I overheard an interesting conversation the other day. A woman was obviously upset about something and was letting the other party know it. From what I could tell, she was justified in being upset and the other party was agreeing. However, at one point, the frustrated woman said, “I’m not trying to chew you out.” The funny thing is, that’s exactly what she was doing.

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Transformational Change: Where do we start?

By Mike Poutiatine

Editor’s Note: A few weeks ago I wrote a blog about transactional change vs. transformational change. The idea being that New Year’s Resolutions are very rarely changes that stick, rather they are fleeting. True, lasting change is transformational. I had a few questions asking how to achieve true transformational change. Realizing that I’m not an expert, I turned to someone that is, my friend Mike Poutiatine.

True transformation of self, organization, community or society requires the complex interaction of three things; Thinking, Feeling and Doing.   Virtually all transformational change starts with one of these three.  All are involved with true transformation, but one of them is always the seed.

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How to Get Buy In

This morning, I’m working on building a marketing team for a church. I’ve been staring at blank emails trying to figure out how to get others to buy in, without sounding lame.

But that’s the trick right? How do you get others excited about something they might have no interest in being excited about?

The answer is something that looks you in the face every time you’re on Facebook or Twitter: transparency and authenticity. Good social media content is transparent and is written by and sounds like a human.

So, in trying to recruit a team, I’m honest about my intentions, their expected time commitment, as well as my level of enthusiasm. Additionally, I write it in my real tone of voice. Nothing made up or contrived. Just transparent and real.

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The Wonderful Curse

The funny thing with doing something awesome the first time is that you end up being expected to do the same every time.

Now, I didn’t say “the challenge with doing something awesome…” because, in all honesty, this should be considered a good thing. Awesomeness (or excellence) should never be a burden. This is why I call excelling at a given task The Wonderful Curse.

Setting the bar high for yourself should be routine, but you should also expect the fallout – good and bad. The good being that you worked hard and completed a task well. The bad being, you will now be held to that standard, but is that really a bad thing.

The only real cure to the curse is to work hard regardless (if you’re a Christ Follower, read “work hard for the Lord). Do work you can be proud of no matter what. If it doesn’t meet someone else’s awesomeness standard, you can at least still sleep at night knowing you did your best.

 

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A New Year’s Resolution or Transformational Change

Last year, I wrote a blog that poo-pooed New Year’s resolutions, and here’s why. Most resolutions are transactional changes. What people need, more often than not, is transformational change.

A transactional change is temporary. It is not permanent. According to a University of Scranton study, about 45% of Americans make New Years Resolutions. However, only about 8% succeed in achieving their resolutions. Whatever the true motivation may be, it seems that most New Years Resolutions are for the sake of conversation. That’s transactional.

Transformational change only takes place when the individual goes through true metamorphosis. The old person is no longer, and a new person exists in its place.

Gavin Trom at ONE* Spokane suggested that failed resolutions and failed goals are half-measures. He challenged the congregation to go all in with true change in 2014, and I agree.

This year, don’t just make a resolution, make a commitment to transformation. Make this the best year ever by committing to being the best version of yourself. Make true change happen.

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Texting affords people the opportunity to be flakey

There’s a simple concept that sometimes I struggle with: do what you say you’re going to do, when you say you’re going to do it. Doing what you said you were going to do, when you said you would do it is the easiest way to earn trust. To help combat my inability to do this, I started writing everything down on a white pad.

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For the sake of clarity…

Just because someone writes a blog offering advice, perspective, or tips doesn’t mean they’re perfect. In most cases (especially mine), it is quite the opposite.

I offer advice because I’ve made mistakes – as a business owner, husband, father, friend, Christ follower, etc. My goal is to use my gifts, the few I have, and what I’ve learned from the mistakes I’ve made, to help others.

Sometimes the best learning comes from making mistakes. It is possible, though, to learn from “case studies” and advance your situation without making too many missteps. However, it takes a special kind of courage to admit when you’ve made a mistake, to admit that you need help, or to seek knowledge in areas where you are inexperienced.

As for me (and this blog), I enjoy taking the time to share what I’ve learned, the mistakes I’ve made, and the obstacles I’ve had to hurdle. I’d share those things even if no one read my blog. It’s part of who I am.

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