What’s Keeping You From Being Strategic?

Most executives are perfectly aware they should be delegating in order to free up strategy time – and yet it doesn’t get done. Part of the issue, executive coach Rebecca Zucker says, may be “underlying beliefs and assumptions…which, at one time, allowed them to cope, protected them, or even allowed them to succeed.

My Next Step Partners colleague Rebecca Zucker is quoted in this article.  The process she is talking about is one developed by Robert Kegan and Lisa Lahey at Harvard and is called Immunity to Change (ITC). ITC is an outstanding coaching methodology that helps clients understand how they get in their own way AND the very good reasons they have for doing so based on some hidden–and perhaps wrong–assumptions.     

See on www.forbes.com

Entrepreneur, Fire Thyself

To spend enough time working on a business, you can’t devote yourself to working in it.

A key issue for founders is letting go — not taking on everything themselves and giving away the minutiae to others.  “The whole transition from working in the business to working on the business means letting go of what you’re comfortable doing. You always need to be thinking big and challenging yourself.” A key point in this article.  

In the earliest stages of a company, the founder or founders are the company and pretty much have to rely on themselves for everything.  Even as they begin to grow and hire a few additional employees control is easily theirs –problems arise when they don’t see when it is time to focus on a few core thigs and allow others to step in to handle the rest.  If the new hires aren’t capable of stepping in, they weren’t the right hires.

The first employees hired should be top talent with excellent skills and the ability to operate independently (including a spectacular executive assistant).  They need the freedom to do what they’ve been hired to do.  It not, they won’t be around long.  

See on blogs.hbr.org

What Makes Malcolm Gladwell Fascinating

I used to dread going to parties. I stood around struggling with small talk, waiting for an opening to debate about big ideas. That changed 13 years ago, the day I read The Tipping Point.


Adam Grant giving some Malcolm Gladwell love and exploring what makes him a terrific storyteller.  “A theorist is considered great, not because his theories are true, but because they are interesting.”

He maps Gladwell to Sociologist Murray Davis’s “Index of the Interesting” along the following five points:

1. Bad is good, good is bad

2. What looks like an individual phenomenon is really a collective phenomenon

3. What seems to succeed fails, and what seems to fail succeeds 

4. What appears to be local is global

5. What looks like disorder is actually order

I believe it is more than that.  What makes Gladwell so eminently readable to me is his voice.  He makes complext ideas sound simple.

He’s a bit wry.  He draws in material from all over.   And often he lets me see me in his stories.

See on www.linkedin.com