Stepping stones

Relationships are key to success.

The people you have around, your family, friends, colleagues, the mentor you discuss difficult topics with, those you turn to when it’s time to celebrate, debrief, understand.

The idea of the lonely hero triumphing against all odds is just wrong. Success is quite predictable, and the relationships you are building – the two-way relationships – are the stepping stones.

I am sorry

As a leader, saying I am sorry is your responsibility. It helps healing and looking forward, it gives perspective, it makes you human.

It is also your responsibility to not make of I am sorry an empty sentence. If you find yourselves saying that too often, as a reaction to the same situations, it should be clear it is time for you for a change.

Lazy adjectives

A pervasive offering is not going to make you win.

A best-in-class solution is a fake promise.

Seamless integration with other tools is a given.

An optimized tool to increase productivity is just not enough.

A customer-driven way to increase leads is meaningless.

Unless it is to describe something that’s truly making you stand out, avoid using adjectives in your copy. Their use is inflated and they do not add any meaningful hint at the value you deliver.

They are a lazy shortcut.

Take the time to explain instead. In as little words as possible. In a clear language. In words your audience can relate to (and other audiences can’t).

Do the work.

With intent

Good job! is not feedback.

I like how you handled the situation is not feedback.

We are hiring somebody to support you is not feedback.

Performance reviews are not feedback.

The truth is, we rarely get feedback we can work with. And part of the reason is that we probably don’t like it.

We need to be asking for feedback regularly and with intent. What do you want to know? What could help you on your path? What do you feel is important to you at this stage?

Feedback is not going to happen otherwise.