THE RULE OF THIRDS

Olympic runner Alexi Pappas says that when trying to do something hard, you should expect “crappy” days. “My Olympic coach told me after a particularly challenging workout… ‘that’s okay, it’s the rule of thirds,’” Pappas recalled. When she asked her coach to explain what he meant, he said, “When you’re chasing a dream or doing anything hard, you’re meant to feel good a third of the time, okay a third of the time, and crappy […]

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HOW INVESTED ARE YOU IN YOUR PERSONAL GROWTH?

“People have a choice to invest themselves in growth, or not. It is possible for them to bury their talents and not put them to use, and then lose them in the end. Growth is something that someone has to engage in willingly. It cannot be imposed on someone, and it can also be resisted.” – Henry Cloud This is a provocative quote. First, if you want to grow, you choose it. It’s an important […]

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ONE MINUTE PRAISINGS

One strategy in The One Minute Manager by Ken Blanchard and Spencer Johnson is to build teams through One Minute Praisings. The idea is simple. Be alert to the efforts and work going on around you. As you notice good things happening, say so. The authors call it “catching someone doing something right.” I have discussed this idea with many others who have read the book. Most of them had the same reaction: “I don’t praise […]

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BEING REALLY GOOD AT ALL THE THINGS THAT DON’T TAKE TALENT

“Be really good every day at all the things that don’t take talent.” – Bo Ryan, former Wisconsin basketball coach As we start the work week, it would serve us each well to consider Ryan’s advice. What doesn’t take talent? Be safe. It starts with your commitment to follow safety procedures. Be punctual. Show up. Every day. Every shift. After every break. All hands on deck is essential for any team to perform best. Try […]

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DISAPPOINTMENT – STRATEGIES FOR OVERCOMING SETBACKS

Despite what you may read and see, everyone experiences disappointment. There’s no avoiding it. You win some and lose some. Health changes. You fall short on goals. Circumstances conspire to prevent desired outcomes. An article in Psychology Today by Dr. Melanie Greenberg described strategies for overcoming setbacks. I jotted down some thoughts about her guidance. Face the truth. Every disappointment deserves assessment. Some get stuck at extremes. They ignore or avoid the reality of a situation, […]

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TAKING PROACTIVE STEPS TO REDUCE WORKPLACE ACCIDENTS IN 2023

Here’s an interesting finding: “America’s cancer mortality rate has fallen 32% since the early 1990s.” To hear one has cancer is sobering news. But it’s not the guaranteed death sentence it once was. Cancer deaths declined as people smoked less. In other words, it declines when you stop doing the things that cause cancer.  Cancer deaths declined as we became alert to its risk and began to screen for it. In other words: when you study the risks, […]

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DOES YOUR TEAM KNOW YOUR VALUES?

One of the coaches I admire most is Steve Kerr, basketball coach for the Golden State Warriors. I’m enjoying reading a biography about him. As a team leader, he promotes four key values: joy, compassion, mindfulness, and competition. Joy. Teams should have fun. The time spent together should have meaning. Progress inspires joy. Achievement inspires joy. Friendship inspires joy. Kerr pays attention to the level of “joy” the teammates are experiencing. Compassion. Compassion brings connection. […]

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HIRING/EVALUATION CHECKLIST

The following is a list of characteristics that employers value when hiring and evaluating employees. They are in order of importance: Positive Attitude Reliable Good Work Ethic Punctual Friendly Follow Through Flexible Hours Experience Respects Authority Dresses Correctly Interesting list, isn’t it? It doesn’t say grades in school. It doesn’t say technical skill. It doesn’t say good looks or natural intelligence. Employers place value on this list of characteristics because finding people who model them […]

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ENTROPY – LOSS OF ENERGY 

Where do you derive “energy?” Entropy is a concept I read about in Dr. Henry Cloud’s book, Integrity. He says that the second law of physics deals with entropy. When a system is left to its own resources, it will cease to grow.  If a system isn’t growing, it will begin to die.  It will break down over time. Have you ever walked into an old shed and observed the tools left behind?  They are […]

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ENCOURAGEMENT AND HIGH EXPECTATIONS

I saw this parenting advice today: “The healthiest kids come from environments that do two things: encourage them with warmth and give them high expectations.” While it certainly applies to parenting, the advice is universally sound. Substitute the word kids with words like relationships, teams, enterprises, schools. You get it. They all work better and grow stronger if we encourage and create high expectations. Years ago, I worked in a plant that suffered from poor […]

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