Category Archives: responsibility

succeed and win

“This is not the end, this is not even the beginning of the end, this is just perhaps the end of the beginning.”
― Winston S. Churchill

Do you feel that you are successful?

Are you winning the daily battles?

Are you winning in your version of life?

What does it mean to win?

How do you set and reset the bar of excellence in your life?

What kind of goals are you setting each day?

To win each day is to focus on noticing what is most important right now.  What is important now?  (WIN – what’s important now).

For many people doing what is not important now is consuming their time.  At work how many important things are left undone because the focus is on answering or reviewing emails, answering a text message or following a lonely path through Facebook.

To WIN means setting real and tangible goals that are important each day.  Just a few important things, the most important things, are to be the focal point of the day.

What am I doing that leads to greater satisfaction?

What am I doing that leads to greater productivity?

What am I doing that will make a lasting difference?

What motivates and inspires you?   Are you doing those things in some way each day?

Success is winning the day.  Winning the day means focusing on what is the most important to focus on right now.   Build in the opportunity to be successful each day.   Be the initiator of great work by doing what is most important now.

how do you want to be remembered?

“Laugh, even when you feel too sick or too worn out or tired.
Smile, even when you’re trying not to cry and the tears are blurring your vision.
Sing, even when people stare at you and tell you your voice is crappy.
Trust, even when your heart begs you not to.
Twirl, even when your mind makes no sense of what you see.
Frolick, even when you are made fun of. Kiss, even when others are watching. Sleep, even when you’re afraid of what the dreams might bring.
Run, even when it feels like you can’t run any more.
And, always, remember, even when the memories pinch your heart. Because the pain of all your experience is what makes you the person you are now. And without your experience—you are an empty page, a blank notebook, a missing lyric. What makes you brave is your willingness to live through your terrible life and hold your head up high the next day. So don’t live life in fear. Because you are stronger now, after all the crap has happened, than you ever were back before it started.”
― Alysha Speer


One of life’s great questions is:  “What do you want to be remembered for?”

What will your life story mean?  What fingerprint will you have left on this world?  What difference will you have made?

If your inner voice is filled with complaint, blame, anger, dissatisfaction or disappointment then create a new path for your life.   Start living your life by giving to the world you live in your genius, your spark, your creativity, your ideas or your time.   Give to the world and the world will give back to you, perhaps not in the currency you anticipate but in ways that will reward you far greater than you can imagine.

Here’s the  challenge.  What can you do to make a difference in this world?

What will your masterpiece be?   What will your shining moment be?  What will your Mt. Everest event be?   Describe your work of the art to the world.  Write it down and give it life.

How do you want to be remembered?   What do you want to be remembered for?

leave people better off than you found them …

“And that’s really the secret to everything, isn’t it?  To be fearless, to go out and try and grab life, no matter what it is, and not wait for good things to wander into the kitchen through the cat door.”
Jason Gay  – Wall Street Journal July 22,2013


Another secret to life is helping others become more of who they really could be.  The secret is leaving another person better off than when you first met them or interacted with them.   Imagine what would happen if companies worked in that same manner.  What would happen if every manager, every employee, every “C” level executive increased the value of everyone they interacted with?   Companies would go beyond great.

Far too many businesses, organizations or entities  are filled  with people who trampled on rather than being built up.   People are  more like a resource, a mineral deposit in which we extract or exploit the value of that resource until it is gone, until there is nothing left, and then we move on.   Recently I encountered a person who did the right thing in their job and then the managers  in the organization decided to make life miserable for the employee so that the individual would choose leaving.    The one act of courage to do the right thing was dismissed and instead of building up the person they were torn down.

This is an appeal to leaders everywhere, what are you doing to add value to the lives of others?   Are you leaving them better off than you when you first met them or interacted with them?

Make that an exercise for today, improve the value of the people you meet and interact with.   Then repeat each day.


1. Say thank-you, genuinely and authentically
2. Let them make a mistake and ask them what they learned
3. Give them more responsibility, show that you trust them.
4. Be open to their words – Listen.

What else can you think of that would add value to those you interact with?

What is stopping you?

A real problem in the workplace



More than a third of companies are so dysfunctional, the best people don’t really care about what they’re doing and the worst people don’t know that they are doing a lousy job. Those are the findings of a new study by Leadership IQ, a twelve-year-old Washington, D.C. company that does employee engagement surveys and leadership training.”   (Fortune Magazine, 4/2/2013)

Imagine that your best employees are not engaged in the work that they do, what is the impact that is having on your business?   It could be that manager’s are not engaged in the process of ensuring that the people who are the most valuable are doing the kind of work that makes the biggest contribution.   It could be that people aren’t creating and setting high expectations for themselves, that they don’t have a sufficiently strong set of goals to motivate their performance.

I’ve found that some people just don’t have daily goals that have enough meaning to get them out of bed in the morning and if they don’t have a great goal what is going to drive their performance.   Work has become less and less rewarding as more and more companies have cut back on things that at some level motivate employees to put more of themselves into their work.

Work has become more demanding and more and more is expected of you.  Knowledge and skill requirements are increasing and so is the tracking and recording of information, creating reports and doing work that feels non-essential which robs the positive feelings that work can provide.   Work that feels non-essential is like having a ship at anchor attempting to sail, it just isn’t going to work well.

Employees own their success.  That is they need to develop a set of clear goals that are in alignment with their strengths that provide a benefit to the organization.   Goals that create a connection to the community in which they reside in at work and make a substantial contribution are necessary to generate  intrinsic motivation.

If you are not engaged in your work, develop a success plan and deliver that to your manager.   Let your manager know what it is that you want to do to make a contribution this year.   What skills and resources do you need?   What things can you accomplish that will help build community?   What keeps you connected to the work you are doing?    Develop a plan that has specific milestones along the way.  Take charge of your growth.  Take charge of your results.

“But I already have too much to do”.    Is that what you were thinking?   If there is too much to do in an eight hour day then what is it that you need to stop doing so that you can do more of what is in alignment with your strengths?   It may be a question that you bring up to your manager.   “I am doing to  much of __________ and it isn’t adding value from my perspective (get some real data) to the organization and these activities if I did them would make a bigger contribution.”   Find out what the benefits are to the organization for each thing you do, how does it benefit the organization.   In some cases organizations do things just because they were done before and no one has stopped to figure out if that thing is of value.

The point is to take ownership of your work and your career.     Within your job responsibilities find those things that you are attracted to and see if there is a way to increase that kind of work.   

What can you do to take ownership of your work so that you’re involved and engaged in the work you do?