Why Leaders Can’t Over-Communicate

5 Reasons to Speak Up and Speak Often

Leaders face a lot of problems, but poor communication is one they often create for themselves. In fact, nine in ten employees say it sabotages the success of executives, according to one study.

Talking to colleague

The same study found the second biggest problem area for leaders was a lack of clear directions. I think this probably applies across the board—everything from mission and core values down to day-to-day operations.

I get it. Sometimes, as leaders, we think we’ve said what needs to be said. We’re actually worried about over-communicating. We don’t want to sound like a broken record.

Season 8, Episode 2: If You Want to Be Successful, Be Less Accessible [Podcast]

(7 Simple Steps)

Welcome to Season 8, Episode 2 of the This Is Your Life podcast. In this episode, Michele Cushatt and I discuss 7 simple steps to being more intentional about how you spend your time.

Episode 2

If you are going to live according to a realistic schedule and maintain margin for your most important priorities, you must make some tough decisions about accessibility. The more successful we are, the less accessible we must become. Otherwise we’ll end up cheating those relationships and projects that matter most. In this podcast, we’ll help you avoid those mistakes.

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Yes, We Have No Office

Why Remote Working Is a Strategic Advantage for Now

I almost took a strategic misstep a few months back. Ever since I started my company, our team has worked remotely. We have twenty people in several different cities producing unparalleled results. But I wanted an office.

working outside

With the help of a great agent, we narrowed the search to 10,000 square feet in the perfect building. But everything comes down to tradeoffs. When I weighed the cost of the space against the benefits of working remotely, it didn’t add up.

Why You Aren’t Dead Yet

Proof That Your Most Important Days Are Still Ahead

Several years ago, I had lunch with a friend I hadn’t seen in a long while. He had just turned eighty. His mind was as sharp as ever—witty, inquisitive, and focused. He was also a great listener. When he did speak, wisdom dripped from his lips.

Woman checking pulse

At a point of genuine humility but deep uncertainty he asked me, “Michael, do you think I have anything left to contribute? Are my best days over?” Tears welled up in his eyes.

Encore Episode: How to Lead Transformational Conversations [Podcast]

10 Practical Strategies for Greater Influence

Our podcast is on hiatus for a few weeks as we prepare for Season 8. But we’ve gone through our content and found some of our most popular episodes to share with you during the transition. Enjoy this listener favorite!

In this episode, Michele Cushatt and I discuss how you can best leverage everyday conversations to make a difference in your relationships.

men talking

A new model of leadership has emerged over the last several years that is more about dialogue than the traditional model. But it’s not always intuitive and it takes some practice. Here are ten practical strategies you can use to gain greater influence.

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"Leadership is an education and the best leaders think of themselves as the students not the teachers." -Simon Sinek

Click here for my complete collection of quote card images.

3 Ways to Treat the Scourge of Cynicism

What to Do if Your Organization Is Infected with the Disease

I hate cynicism. It is like cancer to the human soul. It is especially deadly when it infects an organization.

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A few years into my tenure as the CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers, I thought we had pretty much eliminated it from our company. I was hoping the disease was in remission. But, one morning I discovered that it was still alive and well—at least in parts of the company. The worst part was that a few of our leaders were manifesting symptoms of the disease.

How to Sync up Your Team for Success

Do You Know the 3 Components for Effective Alignment?

Sometimes it’s easy to spot the difference between a weak leader and a strong one. Take alignment. While weak leaders blame their teams when they can’t get it, strong leaders know it’s their responsibility to create it.

rowing

Years ago, I was making a major presentation to a prospective client. My boss was there. So was my boss’s boss (aka “The Big Boss”).

Our goal was to sign the client and win his business. Everyone on our team was nervous, especially me—since I was the one making the pitch.

7 Steps to Gain More Confidence Now

A Proven Path to Overcome Fear and Reach Your Goals

Whenever I speak with leaders about their greatest struggles, the answer I hear more than any other is a lack of confidence. It’s a universal affliction.

confident man

Early in my career, I suffered from almost crippling social anxiety. At formal office functions, I’d sweat like crazy and my hands would go ice-cold.

Later, as the CEO of Thomas Nelson, I wrestled with heavy feelings of inadequacy. Was I really up for the job? Could I really lead this business through the Great Recession?

Season 7, Episode 13: 10 Reasons Every Leader Needs a Blog [Podcast]

(And How to Get Started)

Welcome to Season 7, Episode 13 of the This Is Your Life podcast. In this episode, Michele Cushatt and I discuss why we think blogging is an absolute must for leaders today.

Season 7 episode 13

If you’re a leader and you don’t have a blog, then you are missing out on one of the greatest leadership tools ever invented. With a blog, you can literally influence hundreds and thousands of people at a time. Today, I’m going to give you my 10 reasons why every leader needs a blog and what you need to do to get started.

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7 Ways to Get Your Team to Take More Initiative

Try These Proven Methods to Spur Action and Get Results

Self-starters who take action and get things done are essential to any effective organization. But what are you supposed to do if your teammates don’t show initiative?

Leading by example

I was recently talking with a friend. He was frustrated his employees didn’t take enough initiative. The lack was really affecting his business. The problem was he blamed them and acted like he was powerless—like he was the victim.

I didn’t believe that. And the more I thought about his situation, the more clear it became how to turn it around.