In 100 Words: Road of Routines

August 1st, 2019 by Troy Schrock

Operational success runs down the Road of Routines. Leaders strive for consistent execution while avoiding two ditches.

The Ditch of Boredom – the numb, drained feeling from efforts to keep staff working good disciplines consistently. Leaders may pursue new ideas simply as an escape. The organization careens from one new idea to another.

The Ditch of Process Lock – the pull to become too comfortable and never change processes. People may begin idolizing the process itself. The organization slides into complexity and bureaucracy.

Staying out of the ditches allows leaders to enjoy both the journey and destination on the Road of Routines.

“For every mile of road there are two miles of ditches.” Irish Proverb

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In 100 Words: The Value of Humility

June 14th, 2019 by Troy Schrock

Humility is not required to be successful. There are plenty of conceited, boastful people who enjoy career and financial success. Conversely, people with humility sometimes struggle. The idea that humility has benefits over pride is an axiomatic truth (more probable) rather than an absolute law (like gravity). Arrogance increases the chances a leader:

• makes a blunder by ignoring key decision factors or sound advice,
• experiences resistance to their plans, or
• develops a closed mindset.

Humility usually makes it is easier for a leader to keep an open, receptive mindset – toward people, ideas, and opportunities. Consider the value this could yield.

“Humility will open more doors than arrogance ever will.” Zig Ziglar

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In 100 Words: Swarm Your Priorities

May 1st, 2019 by Troy Schrock

Visualize a swarm of insects or birds in nature moving en masse then descending on and devouring a food source with shocking speed. They completely overwhelm the present condition.

This is the mental picture for how your team should tackle top priorities. Swarm – fully activate and intensely concentrate people and resources to overwhelm the obstacles to accomplishing the objective. Such singular passion and effort will create enough energy to break the inertia of the present condition. Conversely, chipping away at the priority with too few resources applied too late will leave you short. Swarm early and descend on the priority.

“It is not always what we know or analyzed before we make a decision that makes it a great decision. It is what we do after we make the decision to implement and execute it that makes it a good decision.” William Pollard

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In 100 Words: How to Discourage a Team

March 16th, 2019 by Troy Schrock

Team Leader Seminar – Five Sure-Fire Tactics Guaranteed to Dishearten Any Team!

1. Confidently claim your answer or solution is the best.
2. Don’t solicit input. BONUS – Learn the art of ignoring or deflecting ideas the team does happen to share with you (TIP – reinforce with tactic #1).
3. Give more attention and opportunity to team members who don’t align with the organization’s values or buy in to the team’s purpose but are clearly more talented (TIP – talent trumps values).
4. Criticize and correct subordinates work.
5. Publicly joke about subordinates’ weaknesses and failures.

Purposeful, regular application of these tactics yields the best results.

“Many a true word hath been spoken in jest.” William Shakespeare, King Lear

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In 100 Words: Maximize Trade-offs

January 31st, 2019 by Troy Schrock

A perfect option does not exist for many choices we make. Rather, the decision involves a trade-off between a set of upsides and downsides; advantages and disadvantages. We try to balance the trade-offs. Oddly enough, though, we sometimes become concerned when the expected downsides occur. Hoping for a better solution, we work to amend the negative trade-offs without realizing we may miss the full benefit of the positive trade-offs in the process.

Don’t waste energy on the downsides if you want to maximize decision trade-offs. Identify the trade-offs. Get comfortable with your decision path. Enjoy the upsides of the trade-off!

“There are no solutions; there are only trade-offs.” Thomas Sowell

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In 100 Words: Gift of Kindness

December 15th, 2018 by Troy Schrock

Certain seasons or events of our life heighten our awareness of both blessings we enjoy and the needs of others. Caring about someone else more than ourselves sparks kindness. Kindness can be displayed simply – smile and say hello; share encouragement and appreciation; or help someone with an obvious need.

Leaders initiate words and acts of kindness because they realize:

• Kindness is infectious – it’s easy for people to imitate.
• Kindness is relational lubrication – we more easily overlook people’s irritating behaviors.
• Kindness, regularly practiced, strengthens organizational culture.

Kindness is a gift everyone deserves to receive … and a gift everyone can give.

“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.” Aesop

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