Friday, April 28, 2017

Marathoner Or Sprinter?

Recently my wife shared a “thought for the day” that she read on her daily calendar.  The question stated was, “Are you a marathoner or a sprinter?” At first glance, I dismissed the idea as I have often reminded leaders that they are indeed in a marathon…not a sprint and the importance of pacing, regrouping, and pushing forward when feeling exhausted. However, this particular thought for the day took a different twist on the familiar theme.

It suggests that we identify the “marathoners” and the “sprinters” on our team. Marathoners are those who like to work slowly and methodically with plenty of lead-time. These are the folks who do consistent work over long periods of time, which boosts their efficiency and creativity.

Sprinters, by contrast are those who welcome pressure and time restraints.  They not only work close to the deadline, but right up next to it.  It’s the sprint that ignites their creative and efficient flow, as if they start too early, they become inefficient.

So…when you look at YOUR team, what do you see?  How do maintain balance? Do you treat all your “runners” the same?  Is there a right/wrong way? When your team looks at you…what do they see…a sprinter…marathoner…coach…cheerleader? What role SHOULD you play? Ah….so many questions…perhaps points to ponder…

Be good to yourself…

Friday, April 21, 2017

You Got GRIT???

Not completely sure how the conversation began, but recently I found myself engaged in a deep discussion revolving around the absence of “GRIT”…no, not the stuff on the bottom of a bird cage…but GRIT…TRUE GRIT…John Wayne style…

The dictionary defines grit as “perseverance and passion for long-term goals.” By some observations it appears that we have become a society of wanting/getting everything NOW…that long time goals met with passion and perseverance are things that were met for those days long gone by…. Personally, I couldn’t disagree more!

As leaders, we must model what it is we expect from those we serve.  Consider these 5 characteristics of grit as outlined by Margaret M. Perlis in an article in Forbes magazine.

1.     Courage - The courage to take risks, the courage to fail and learn from it, the courage to do the right thing versus the easiest.
2.     Conscientiousness – Being achievement oriented, meticulous; a commitment to going for the gold, versus just showing up.
3.     Long-Term Goals – Endurance – Follow Through -  According to Perlis, “One of the distinctions between someone who succeeds and someone who is just spending a lot of time doing something is this: practice must have purpose. That’s where long-term goals come in. They provide the context and framework in which to find the meaning and value of your long-term efforts, which helps cultivate drive, sustainability, passion, courage, stamina…grit.”
4.     Resilience – One must exhibit a combination of optimism, creativity, and confidence, which, when combined, empower us to “recalculate” our course, and keep emotions in check…”everything will be alright in the end, and if it’s not alright, it is not the end…”
5.     Excellence vs. Perfection – In general, those with grit don’t seek perfection, but rather drive for excellence.  Perfection is described as an absolute, a perception of an ideal, and pursuing it is somewhat like chasing an illusion. Anxiety, low self-esteem, OCD, and clinical depression are only a few of the conditions ascribed to a “perfectionist”.  Excellence is far more forgiving, it allows for disappointment and prioritizes progress over perfection…it embraces life-long learning.

Simply put…grit is an attitude about seeking, striving, finding, and never yielding…it’s what leaders must exhibit…or as “The Duke” would say…”True grit is making a decision and standing by it, doing what must be done. No moral man can have peace of mind if he leaves undone what he knows should have been done.”

Develop your GRIT…to be GREAT!

Be good to yourself…

Friday, April 14, 2017


This time of year is a reflective time for me. It’s a time that things, which once seemed dead, spring back to life. Where the gray days give way to brighter ones.  There’s freshness in the air and hope that things not only will get better but things are indeed better. HOPE is a powerful word…a powerful emotion, which helps us move forward to brighter days. Hope is that little voice we hear whisper “maybe” when the entire world is shouting "NO"!

As leaders we must always inspire hope, be the source of hope, keeping hope alive and well within the organization…Let us all be mindful, especially this weekend, of the power hope instills in us all…

Be good to yourself…

Friday, April 7, 2017

Tip Of The Iceberg

It’s been said that a picture is worth a thousand words. Recently I came across such a picture…pretty much says it all…

So my friends…if you’re tired…if you’re wondering if it’s all worth it…just remember what each of parents told us somewhere along the way…”success comes before work only in the dictionary.”

Be good to yourself…