Friday 30 October 2015

The one thing Kiwi's and Wallabies have in common

The Rugby World Cup final (4 pm GMT Saturday October 31st) will be the first time New Zealand and Australia, both world champions on two occasions, have met in the deciding game.

As an Aussie my allegiance is obvious. We have never minded being the Underdogs. In fact we thrive on it. The All Blacks, who I have great respect for, will be wary of being the favourites.

For the record I expect New Zealand will win because I think the sentiment around this reportedly being the last game for legendary captain Richie McCaw, will give the All Blacks an edge. I won’t be surprised though if Australia wins for the same reason - the All Blacks may just try (no pun intended) too hard.

Regardless of who wins I have observed something both sides have in common that I think is a key to their greatness as it is with all remarkable teams - the coaches genuinely care for their players as people.

Star player David Pocock says the following here about his Wallabies coach Michael Cheika.
“Playing against his Waratahs teams for the Brumbies for a couple of years, I heard lots of stories. Now, I see a different side to him. He demands a lot but he really cares for the players.”

Humility is something I also notice about Michael Cheika.

The same can be said for All Blacks coach Steve Hansen who says in this interview:

“We want to be humble, grateful men and women for being part of it.”

I suspect both these coaches have accepted the challenge of leadership as expressed by Jim Rohn.

Which one stands true to this challenge, particularly when the game is at it’s hottest may well turn out to be game changer.

Be remarkable.
PS I'm not such a diehard fan that I’ll watch the game live, given 4 pm GMT/London is 2 am my time. I will awake curious to find out not just who won, more importantly who/what were the game-changers?, because in them will be remarkable lessons for leaders.

Wednesday 28 October 2015

The universal business model you can adopt immediately to achieve better results

Soon you'll look back on 2015 and recognise it as a good year for your business life. You want 2016 to be better though right?

Likely your dream is to do better with a lot less personal cost to you and other people.

To lighten the load on you and a select few, more people will need to step up their performance next year.

Adopting the business model pictured below in your own way makes this possible.

Fundamental to your success in adopting this model is appreciating people.

The eminent psychologist and philosopher William James famously observed:

The deepest principle of human nature is the craving to be appreciated.

There are many simple and common sense actions you're most likely taking that are expressing your appreciation to your employees. Below are just a few examples. All of them contribute to people feeling more valued.

Catching people doing things right and doing the right thing.
Giving people genuine compliments.
Informally and formally celebrating with people what is going well for them.
Always saying please and thank you and meaning it.
Being courteous and kind.
Sharing stories about the successes of your people.
Being compassionate.

To ensure actions like the above are meaningful to people in the long term in today's remarkable workplaces the following three practices are in place:

1) One page role clarity statements that articulate the value people are accountable to deliver and who to, have replaced detailed job descriptions that often end with "and anything else as directed."

2) One page personal and business development plans that articulate the leaps people will take in the next 90 days have replaced the traditional performance review/appraisal documents and the enormous amount of time and energy taken to complete them.

3) Candid and convivial conversations using the above as focusing tools are integral to daily work.

Possible Action

Should you like some help with adopting this model in your business let's chat.

Initially I provide a complimentary consultation. We'll "meet" online for a virtual coffee. We'll discuss your situation (in the strictest confidence of course) and I'll give you one great idea to move forward.

If we’re a great fit for each other and you’d like to discuss how we could work together going forward, fantastic. On the other hand, if either of us decides we’re not a great fit, no worries – you’ll still get top value from me that you can use straight away.​

And just so you know, I don’t do ‘hard sell'. That’s not what I believe works for effective change, so it would be against my own integrity for me to even go there.

So if that all this sounds like a great fit for you and your situation, let’s chat. Just email me at or call me on +61 418 807 898 to make arrangements.

Be remarkable.

Monday 26 October 2015

Small transitions guarantee desired transformation

Every time a leader agrees to work with me and I with them transformation of something dear to their hearts is at the top of their agenda. It's the nature of our work together.

Before I sign a confirmation of agreement with clients I have stressed that big change won't happen over night and that there is a journey to travel before transformation happens.

Nevertheless expectations are high. There's a tendency to want the change/s to happen quickly. Often there's an expectation of miracles happening in the first week!

I help my clients to keep calm and considered by celebrating with them each time an agreed quantum leap has been taken.

All change is personal first, relationships second, and organisations a distant third, so the early celebrations with clients are often about very small personal wins which of course may not be very visible to everyone.

Once clients become familiar with quantum leaps change gets simpler, because the focus is no longer on the end game (transformation) rather the next jump from here to there (transition).

The resistance to, fear of, and anxiety about change that is ever present in human life is significantly reduced when changes are made one quantum leap at a time. It is also much easier to overcome people's fear of what they may lose by changing, by focusing on the next quantum leap.

Better still it's much easier to help people to gain from changing, one quantum leap at a time.

Are you faced with the need for transformation in your workplace? Think quantum leaps.

Then, carefully map out transition leaps with everyone involved. Celebrate when you take the leaps. The transformation you desire will happen as a consequence of taking the right leaps for you.

Be remarkable.

Possible Action

Take on my 90 Day Opportunity Program here.  It's a low investment/high return way to start transitioning to where you want to be today.

Sunday 25 October 2015

A simple yet profound way to improve performance

When performance is short of shared expectations/understanding, either a process (or policy, procedure, practice, system) can be improved or people aren't following the process (or policy, procedure, practice, system).

Usually when people aren't following the process (or policy, procedure, practice, system), they either don't understand it, or they don't feel that it's enabling them to bring their very best to their work.

A simple yet profound way to improve performance is to every day be looking at processes, policies, procedures, practices, and systems, and asking: Does this mean it's simple for people to bring their very best to their work? and then taking action accordingly.

Be remarkable.

Friday 23 October 2015

What if the future of business is not about technology?

Everywhere you look there's headlines saying The Future of Business Is Technology.

What if it isn't?

All day, every day there's talk of digital revolution and disruption. What if this isn't what really matters?

In her wonderful new book MEANINGFUL: THE STORY OF IDEAS THAT FLY, Bernadette Jiwa says:

... it's not the technology in isolation, particular platforms or specialised functionality that's driving the change; what's driving this new wave of relevance is the humanity of the entrepreneurs and business owners who create the products and user experiences that people love.

I couldn't agree more.


The future of your business is all about your humanity, how you see and treat people. Then you can concern yourself with how technology can help you to enable and enhance the experience you provide for your customers/clients.

Steve Jobs was onto this long ago of course. He said "You've got to start with the customer experience and work backwards to the technology."

Even the industrial revolution giant GE is awake up to the fact that the future of business is not about technology, rather that technology is an enabler and enhancer of the human experience.

There's two short interviews with GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt here and here about this. In the first interview he says "I thought it was all about technology and admit I was wrong."

What will you do next to bring your humanity to your business?

How will you best use technology to enable and enhance the human experience of your customers/clients?

Be remarkable.

Wednesday 21 October 2015

I Want My Life Back

I’m sure that you, like me, are already having conversations with family, friends, and colleagues about the Christmas holidays. And it’s not all rosy in the garden.

This is what I’m hearing:

“I can't wait to be with my wife and kids, I’ve hardly seen them this year and I’m in the doghouse.”

“I’ve been flat out like a lizard drinking, and I need to come up for air.”

“If I don’t have a week off soon, I’m gonna go f’ing crazy. The holidays can’t come quick enough. The money’s been great but life’s been a bit sh.t”

In short, people are saying … their success at work is costing them too much.

As a response to this I’m running a special ‘I Want My Life Back Clinic'. 

This complimentary clinic is on a first come first served basis.

Since I know you’re probably under the pump, this will only be for 30 minutes, and it will totally be worth your time.

We’ll identify who or what isn’t supporting you in achieving the business results and life-style you want.

I’ll help you clarify an action to take to reduce your immediate stress to make sure you can enjoy your time off. And give you analysis of the wider issue to take you out of this situation for good.

These clinics will run throughout November (unless by special arrangement).

Our conversation will be 100% confidential and strictly between you and me.

If you want one of these sessions, just email and I'll be in touch.

Best remarkable.

Friday 16 October 2015

Problem or opportunity? - you get to decide

I hear the marketing gurus who say we must identify problems in a niche market and then offer enough of a solution to prospects that they'll be compelled to ask for more.

There's some truth in this, yet for me there's a more powerful way that's particularly relevant in our current world where most people are feeling overwhelmed and/or uncertain.

I'm finding it's better to discuss opportunities (positive mindset) with people rather than problems (negative mindset).

I've been testing this for 3 months now and here's the results.

When I ask prospects I've never met before "What's keeping you awake at night? or Tell me about the biggest problem your endeavouring to solve right now? or any number of questions that focus on the negative, the conversation tends to meander and only 16% of people feel compelled to continue the conversation.

And yet vibrant conversation occurs, and 77% of people are compelled to ask for more, when I phrase the question with a positive mindset, for example "So tell me, what's the great opportunity you're pursuing at the moment?"

I first learned this approach while helping my clients with every day innovation. I found that when the focus was problem solving there was a tendency to just solve the problem and reinstate the status quo. And yet when the focus was on opportunity and taking one quantum leap at a time, most often there's been innovation and a move to a new level of performance.

Problem or opportunity? - you get to decide.

What will you do next?

Be remarkable.

PS Undertaking my 90 Day Opportunity Program can be your next leap. Here's how it works.

Wednesday 14 October 2015

My favourite F words

The image above is from this post by Kevin Roberts.

I love Brian Ashton's concepts and agree with Kevin that they're a solid recipe for business success.

Framework, not Gameplan
Freedom, not Restriction
Fearlessness, not Fear
Futuristic, not Flatlining

My clients have had success with

Failure is the the secret sauce of every day innovation.
Facebook friends are fine. Real friends are foundational.
Flashes of brilliance are not as valuable as consistent high performance.
Fast, flat, and free is a nice way to describe the internet of things.
Factory working ideology is being replaced with freelance thinking and action.

Firms of endearment.

What are your favourite F words?

Be remarkable.

PS I have to admit that in the right context WTF? is a great question to ask!

PSS I admit too that the quintessential F word in appropriate situations can still say it all.

Monday 12 October 2015

Concinnity is a key to achieving your best business results

Inspired by a TEDx talk by one of the authors (see my post here), I've been rereading and studying this great book recently.

I hadn't picked up on the concept of concinnity when I first read the book in 2008.

Concinnity - "a skillful blending of the parts achieving an elegant harmony."

Unlike the organisations profiled in books like 'Good to Great' and 'In Search of Excellence' most of the companies that feature in 'Firms of Endearment' are still role models. These include BMW, Costco, Google, Harley-Davidson, Honda, IDEO, IKEA, Patagonia, Southwest Airlines, Timberland.

I highly recommend this book. Check out the website.

Below is a very interesting chart from the website.

It's not about the numbers though right?

As I say: Profit is not a reason for being in business, rather a result of being good at business.

Business is all about people.

Also from the Firms of Endearment website:
Today's greatest companies are fueled by passion and purpose, not cash. They earn large profits by helping all their stakeholders thrive: customers, investors, employees, partners, communities, and society. These rare, authentic firms of endearment act in powerfully positive ways that stakeholders recognize, value, admire, and even love. They make the world better by the way they do business-and the world responds.

How could you do better in helping all your stakeholders to thrive?

What's the one thing you'll do next?

Be remarkable.

Further reading

The slide opposite is by Scott McKain. I highly recommend his work on Distinction.

Check out Scott's full slideshare here.

I also recommend this article by Todd Sattersten on the THE MIGHT AND MYTH OF GOOD TO GREAT.

And the article GOOD TO GREAT… TO GONE! by Graeme Codrington. You can read it here.

Sunday 11 October 2015

Are you onto O2O?

This blog post from Kevin Roberts captured my interest. I think it's a trend that will become a movement.

What do you feel and think? Are you onto O2O?

Be remarkable.

Friday 9 October 2015

"Human beings are not a resource"

I recreated the slide below from Raj Sisodia's TEDx talk.

Is this how you see the world?

A key for me is what Raj says at the 19 minute mark of his talk - "Human beings are not a resource."

Everything we know about change has changed except one thing - how we humans feel. We embrace change when we feel it will make our lives better and resist change when we feel it won't.

The one thing you can begin to do right now that will have the greatest impact on your life and your business is to "unleash human ingenuity."

What will you do next?

Be remarkable.

Wednesday 7 October 2015

Non-conformists please step forward

Are you surrounded by people who see the world differently than you do?

Are you embracing this diversity of feeling and thinking?

Despite your differences, and more importantly, because of them, are you all highly skilled at sustaining shared-view?

Be remarkable.

Monday 5 October 2015

Emulate Hawthorn and immediately improve your business

Two days ago the Hawthorn Football Club won their third successive Australian Football League premiership. This feat has only been achieved 6 times in the history of the AFL.

I'm not a supporter of the club. I do admire them greatly.

Their Play Your Role campaign is one action you can emulate and immediately improve your business.

For a quarter of a century I've been helping my clients to dispense with job descriptions and replace them with role clarity statements. It all began when I met Bill.

Bill's story

I first met Bill in the early nineties. I was in the early days of doing discovery work into how I could best help Bill's organisation. This meant meeting with lots of people in the offices and factory.

I began to notice that each time I exited a conversation Bill was close by leaning on his broom.

Soon curiosity got the better of me and so I made a beeline for Bill. After explaining who I was and what I was doing I asked Bill "So what's your role?" "I thought you'd never ask me." he replied and then said "I'm the Assistant to the Managing Director.

Bill's job was Head Cleaner. His role was of far greater significance.

I invested several hours with Bill and learned everything I needed to know about the organisation. Included in what I learned from Bill were two insights he had previously passed on to the management team that they had failed to act on. When they did take action the bottom-line improved by 4 million dollars!

What have your employees been sharing with you lately that you haven't yet acted on?!

Like the Hawthorn Football Club every person working in your business has a key role. Not just the star players, every human being. If you're focused on a few and not the many you're missing a magic opportunity in your business as I explore here.

When everyone is playing their role you win.

One simple yet profound action

Begin today to have conversations with your employees about their roles.
Over time get rid of job descriptions and replace them with role clarity statements.

Here's some further reading to help you to take action. There's a template for role clarity in the second article.

Your work is not your job.

Dispense with job descriptions and watch your people soar.

Be remarkable.

Sunday 4 October 2015

Give people freedom - one quantum leap at a time

Freedom is what everyone wants.

A key question is How is your business giving people (employees and customers/clients) freedom?

People want to be free from
Perceived unnecessary compliance
Bosses/leaders/managers who want to be in control
Corporations or any Institution seen as out of touch or disrespectful of individual and human rights
Being told what to do

I could make a long list.

Ask your employees and your customers/clients: What would you most love to be free from? 

Act on their answer.

My best advice is to take action one quantum leap at a time.

Be remarkable.

PS Would an online library of short, succinct client stories be valuable to you?

As is the case in the majority of my posts what I'm recommending you do has come from real world experiences with my clients. 

This post for example was inspired by a conversation with a client this week who when I asked him "How's things going?" replied "I feel like I'm in a jail trapped by a million and one things." I then asked the question that I've tried, tested, and proven and asked many, many times whenever it's been appropriate, "What would you most love to be free from?" 

What followed this week was a short conversation that led to my client to deciding on a quantum leap he could take straight away to free himself from his feelings of overwhelm.

I've been contemplating for some time about providing an online resource centre you could access with my compliments whenever you wish that would contain short, succinct stories of simple yet profound solutions to the every day challenges you're facing in your business. If you believe this would be of great value to you please say so with a comment below or if you wish to remain anonymous please email

I'll be taking whatever action responses dictate. Thank You in advance for your help.

Friday 2 October 2015

"The most essential work of the leader is to create more leaders"

I'm really excited about a current project where I'm having candid and convivial conversations with leading experts on leadership. Below is the first.

Find out more about the series here.

Be remarkable.

Each conversation is in the spirit of my favourite quote about the purpose of leadership:

Leadership is not defined by the exercise of power 
but by the capacity to increase the sense of power among those led. 
The most essential work of the leader is to create more leaders.  
Mary Parker Follett, in ‘The Creative Experience’, 1924