Monday, 22 October 2018

What experience, aspiration, lifestyle are you offering?

In an article 'Special Isn’t What You Think' David Clarke, PwC’s global chief experience officer, suggests 4 ways to assess your business to see if you really are special in what you're offering.

1) Your friends and family have workplace envy. 
2) You’re spending less on media.
3) People love to work for you — like, really love it.
4) You’re not a want anymore, you’re a must-have — a new need.

I recommend taking a closer look at these by reading the full article.

Another way you assess your standing, which the article hints at is, what experience, aspiration, lifestyle are you offering your customers/clients?

Who will you become?

What will you do next?

Be remarkable.

Friday, 19 October 2018

There can only be trouble when everyone is telling and no one is listening

Simon: I think you just summed up the problem in our country today: too much telling and not enough listening. The left is trying to tell the right, the right is trying to tell the left. The pro-gun lobby is trying to tell the gun control lobby, and the gun control lobby is trying to tell the pro-gun lobby. Everybody is telling everybody what it should be and what they should do, and nobody listens. If I had a friend in that position, I wouldn’t tell him anything. I would ask, “Are you happy? How are you? What is going on?” I would shut up and listen.

I think this is one of the most essential skills in life that has almost completely fallen by the wayside and in modern America, which is the art of listening, the skill of listening—a very difficult skill that requires education and tons of practice. If you do it right, active listening makes you exhausted by the end because it takes so much energy. Where you don’t just hear the words that are spoken, but you understand the meaning behind those words. Where you seek out common ground, to try to find whether there are common values—only then can you actually start to have a discussion.

I think the lesson is best captured by a story that Nelson Mandela used to tell. He was asked once, “How did you learn to become a great leader?” What people don’t realize is that he was actually born the son of a tribal chief, and he said, “I went to tribal meetings with my father when I was a boy, and I remember two things: They always sat in a circle, and my father was always the last to speak.”

The above is from this great interview with Simon Sinek by Jordan Harbinger

The image above is from this article (which was referenced in the Sinek/Harbinger interview) It's title in part Conversation Is a Skill. I couldn't agree more.

A lot of my work with my clients is helping them to become remarkable at conversations, what begins them and whats flows from them because my great conclusion from my work is that

Enlightened Language elevates conversations,
Conversations enrich relationships,
Relationships enable business.

Be remarkable.
Like some help in applying the principle/s in this post in your own best way?

Choose a presentation/conversation/mentoring package.

Speak with me about a 1:1/group mentoring program.

Speak with me about a mentoring your mentors program.

Wednesday, 17 October 2018

Monday, 15 October 2018

Value delivery is the essential ingredient for success whatever business you're in

The following is an extract from my Remarkable is the new normal workbook.

You can download the full workbook from here.


We are all regardless of our product/s/service/s in the business of delivering value to all our stakeholders, value that they demand, desire, and feel that they deserve.

If you don’t know what value each of your stakeholders wants you had better ask them and quickly because if you don’t know or wait to long to find out your business is on the slippery slope to extinction rather than distinction!

What Employees Really Want From Employers
(from my research over the past two decades)

Appreciation. The eminent psychologist William James observed: “The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated.”
To be held to account via regular, constructive performance feedforward and feedback
Opportunity to master something
Role satisfaction
A feeling that their work contributes to a higher purpose
Knowing that their work is helping them to achieve their aspirations
Open, regular, truthful, information gathering and sharing
Remuneration perceived to be at least equal to effort
Trust and trustworthiness
Happy and healthy working environment
Fairness in all dealings
Hope for the future

How well are you providing your employees with the above?

How can you do better?

Would you add anything to my list?

What Employees Really Want From Each Other
(from my research over the past two decades)

Goal and strategy alignment
Promises kept
Open communication
Understanding of personal needs
Trust, trustworthiness, and confidence
Appreciation, support and encouragement
Sense of family
Acceptance of the merit of ideas
Mutual respect 

How well are your employees providing each other with the above?

How can your employees do better?

Would your employees add anything to my list?

What customers/clients really want

Geoffrey James has sold and written hundreds of features, articles and columns for many publications including Wired, Men's Health, Business 2.0, SellingPower, Brand World, Computer Gaming World, CIO, The New York Times.

Geoffrey believes all customers want the same 12 things, regardless of who they are, who is selling to them or what they’re buying.

In my work over the past 25 years I would concur with every one of these.

 They want to feel important.
 They want to be appreciated.
 They want you to stop talking about yourself.
 They want you to stop talking about your firm.
 They want you to truly listen.
 They want to be understood.
 They want to teach YOU something.
 They want and need your help.
 They want to buy something.
 They want you to delight and surprise them.
 They want to pretend they make logical decisions.
 They want success and happiness.

On a scale of 1 - 10 with 10 being remarkable how well are you delivering on the above 12?

How can you and your employees do better?

Would you add anything to Geoffrey’s list?

You can download the full workbook from here.

Be remarkable.

Friday, 12 October 2018

The power of making progress in meaningful work visible

I was staggered recently to view a Key Performance Indicators (KPI's) document. None were indicators they were all desired outcomes for the year.

I took the person I was meeting with through this 2011 post about lead measures.

Our conversation then moved to discussing the progress principle and the power of making progress in meaningful work visible.

Below are three previous posts about this topic that summarise what we talked about.

The Art and Science of Scorecards/Scoreboards and Meaningful Metrics Matter Most

The principles of progress and the progress principle

"Key human indicators" trump the traditional and tired KPI's

In your workplace is progress in meaningful work visible?

If not making this happen is one of most remarkable actions that you can take. Should you love some help please give me a shout.

If you're in my neighbourhood join me for the master-class on this topic in Ballarat on the 24th October. You can register here.

Be remarkable.

Wednesday, 10 October 2018

5 ways to get away from The Greedy Bastards

In my country Australia bastard in the right context can be a term of endearment. Not in this article.

In my life-time (I’m 64) we have shifted from the economy being part of society to society being part of the economy. I for one am on a mission to change this. You?

Why? Economic growth and the pursuit of it is killing us (think oil, data, privacy, elections, you name it), and our planet.

One of my heroes is Sir David Attenborough.

He says “Anyone who thinks we can have infinite growth on a finite planet is either a madman or an economist.”

And yet growth dominates the language of our politicians and business leaders.

Growth is high on the agenda of BREXIT. As I write it’s looking like BRINO (‘Brexit In Name Only’)!

Why? Greedy Bastards.

Just ask the people of Greece. And Italy. And Spain. Ask anywhere!

In particular be aware of greedy bastards wearing suits of doing good. Wolves in sheeps clothing for sure.

BREXIT was a dumb idea in the first place. It smacks of blaming your next door neighbour for the weeds growing in your garden.

And Trump. Don’t get me started. He is greed personified. His charade will end in tears and America will take a generation to recover.

I’ve got everything crossed that he doesn’t take us all into demise.

This is all one reason that I’m focused on thriving in my professional practice rather than growing. I also want to get away from the greedy bastards.

I admit I’m towards the end of my tilt. Nevertheless I’m a decade into the thriving business.

I began in 2008 albeit then, unwillingly.

The 15th September 2008 collapse of the investment bank Lehman Brothers was arguably the peak of the 2007/08 Global Financial Crisis.

Our world hasn’t recovered.

I was going gangbusters then. I was traveling all the time and doing over 50% of my work outside Australia. The greedy bastards in the financial system brought it all to a halt.

I went back to surviving and gradually moved to thriving. I set goals to thrive not necessarily to grow. And I created systems and processes to ensure sustainability regardless of what the greedy bastards do or don’t do.

There’s strong evidence of course that our financial system is still a shambles.

Here in Australia our financial system is currently under the microscope via a Royal Commission.

Commissioner Kenneth Hayne's interim findings take your breath away, including he says “greed is the root cause of bad behaviour in financial advice.”

The good news is that there is an economics that’s good for everyone as Kate Raworth explores in her wonderful book Doughnut Economics.

While we’re bringing in the new financial system we need to beat the greedy bastards. 

Here’s 5 recommendations:

Greed is defined here as selfish want for something beyond one's need.

And typically greed is associated with wealth or power.

1) Resist and stand against talk about growth for growth’s sake

Let’s talk about thriving, living in harmony, leaving the earth better than we found it and acting on this talk.

2) Let’s stop talking about the economy and instead talk about society. 

A good rule before making any major decisions is to ask “How will this be good for my grandchildren?

3) Lobby Governments to ditch GDP and other useless measurements

This idea comes from The Rules ideas into post growth.  They say:

"We could start by ditching GDP as an indicator of success in favor of a more balanced measure like the Genuine Progress Indicator, which accounts for negative “externalities” like pollution and material depletion.   We could roll out a new money system that doesn’t pump our system full of interest-bearing debt. And we could start thinking about putting caps on material use, so that we never extract more than the Earth can regenerate.”

4) Live within your means

Global Debt is about $250 trillion of which approximately a fifth ($50 trillion) is household debt.

Take a close look at your debt levels personally and in your business. Can you honestly say you are living within your means personally and in your business?

If not immediately begin to take corrective action.

Recently my wife and I updated our wills and created powers of attorney our children had to sign. My daughter asked if she would be left with any debt. The answer is no yet it is a good question to ask.

5) Limit the number of products and services you buy that are produced and provided by listed companies

The ABC News in Australia stock market report by Alan Kohler makes me laugh a) he has a sense of humour and b) listed companies here make up about a third of the economy.

The real economy, mostly made up of small to medium enterprises, hardly ever rate a mention.

The stock market is licensed gambling. I don’t want people running companies financed by gamblers (shareholders) to have any influence in my life therefore wherever possible I buy from non-listed companies.

When I do buy from listed companies I’m always endeavouring to ensure that the companies are purpose not profit driven, are known for their ethics, and are genuinely being good citizens.

Who will you become?

What will you do next?

“Blasphemous is the dogma that greed is godly and markets are sacred” say Frederick Bird and Henry Mintzberg in their great article Nailing Corporate Reformation to the Door.

Be remarkable.

PS I highly recommend the work of Ian Goldin and Chris Kutarna.

Greed and greedy bastards in my view were part of the modern dark ages which preceded the new renaissance explored in this book.

Goldin and Kutarna compare discoveries of the great European Renaissance (1450 - 1550) to the New Renaissance happening now (since 1990).

At around the 11 minute mark in Chris Kutarna's video below he talks about the irrelevance of GDP in today's world.