Anatomy of a Tough Talk

Our success as leaders often comes down to one thing. Not our planning. Not the market. But, instead, the conversations we lead. When stakes are high (and emotions even higher) you need a solid game-plan. In this episode, we break down a three-phase strategy for winning with your next crucial conversation.

The Right Way to Fire the Wrong Person

5 Steps to Letting People Go Humanely

“Does it get easier the more people you fire?” someone once asked me. I’ve been in leadership for decades now, and there’s no escaping letting people go from time to time. But that doesn’t make it easier. “No,” I said, “it hasn’t. And I hope to God it never does.” But while frequency doesn’t translate […]

Hobbies of Highly Effective People

How Five Different CEOs Get the Rest and Relaxation They Need

Let’s play a word-association game: Toss out the first several words or phrases that come to mind when you hear the name “Bill Gates.” Don’t overthink it. Just say them out loud or write them down. Ready? From an informal survey I conducted, some of the terms you might have come up with include: a) […]

3 Lessons from a Monthlong Sabbatical

How Real Time away Can Recharge Your Spirit and up Your Game

I began my career as a proud workaholic. I measured my contribution by the hours I clocked and the coffee I consumed. So the MH&Co. culture came as a bit of a shock. It was the best kind of shock, though. With a core value of radical margin and an unlimited PTO policy, our leaders […]

Winston Churchill’s Secret Productivity Weapon

How a Midday Nap Can Boost Your Performance all Day Long

One of the more unlikely museums in London is located in the basement of the Treasury, between 10 Downing Street and the Palace of Westminster: the Churchill War Rooms, the underground complex from which Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his ministers and generals fought World War II. The War Rooms is a large warren of […]

How to Beat the Burnout Culture

In today’s job world, burnout is a constant threat. Email and smartphones keep us constantly connected. Worse still, we lionize leaders who never rest. Famous CEOs tout 80-hour workweeks and we wear busyness like a badge of honor. Join us to discover the causes of our overwork obsession—and its cure.

4 Ways to Get Better at Deferred Gratification

Mindset Shifts for Playing the Long Game

I work with a lot of young people getting started in their careers. Those who chase the highest possible starting salary, most prestigious title, or sexiest-sounding company do worse than those who ignore all of that and focus on value creation, no matter how humble. You are your best investment. There is no IRA, real […]

Why Hopeful Realism Beats Mandatory Optimism

The Downside of Positivity and What It Means for Your Business

One unavoidable piece of advice today is be positive. We’re supposed to filter out supposed negativity in meetings, reports, and general conversation because we think positivity produces the results we want. Optimism is almost mandatory in some environments. As Dan Lovallo and Daniel Kahneman point out, critical feedback is discouraged and treated like disloyalty. “The […]

How to Say No When it Counts

3 Strategies for Setting Healthy Personal Boundaries

Sometimes you just have to say no. That isn’t always easy. But there are strategies that can help say no when you need to—and save your time, energy, and sanity in the process. Motivational speaker Byron V. Garrett, my former boss at National PTA, often says that you only have twelve hours a day to […]

Better Things Come to Those Who Wait

We live in an instant culture. But if we limit ourselves to fast and easy, we miss out on any wins that require patience or persistence. Honestly, most big wins fall into that second category. In this episode, we’ll share three practices to heighten your frustration tolerance and boost your stamina for long-term success.

Mind Over Marshmallow

Finally Some Good News for the Impatient

The marshmallow test is a great example of how popular social science is amplified by popular culture. Experiments that measured young children’s willpower to hold out for that second marshmallow, first conducted in the 1960s, are still inspiring TV shows today. On Sesame Street, Cookie Monster learned to dial back the munchies so he could […]