Shaping Culture Like a Professional Sports Team

Podcast - Episode 14

Standing on the steps waiting for my car, I turned to my left and found myself standing next to Jamey Rootes, President of the Houston Texans. I summed up the courage to introduce myself and ask if he would be open to sharing his thoughts on what it took to engage top-performing people. I figured that someone leading a professional sports organization would have insight on leading exceptional talent. Jamey smiled and graciously invited me to visit his office. That was the first C Suite leadership interview I conducted, and one that I have referred to most often in programs I’ve conducted on developing world-class leadership strategies.

 

The Houston Texans organization embraces the word IMPACT:

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How Do You Unlock Success?

Podcast - Episode 11 & Blog

Podcast Artwork - David Alexander

No matter what your productivity has been year-to-date, the last months of 2019 will define your productivity. It can be filled with great achievement, momentum-building activities to finish the year strong and lay groundwork for launching 2020. Are you focused on the key results you want to achieve? Are you committed to making them a reality? Are you willing to grade how successful you were? That was one of the biggest steps I have hesitantly taken. Looking at my top five objectives then rating whether I would give myself an A, B, C… you get the point. Now at the end of the day, my wife Tommie will sometimes ask 

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The Power of “What If”

Let Your Dream Be Bigger Than Your Fear

 

What if has had both a paralyzing and catapulting effect on my life. At the age of 23, I began the battle of severe panic attacks. The first attacked happened on an elevator, then an airplane. Their existence manifested into driving across bridges, movie theatres, spreading to standing in lines at grocery stores. I found myself removing the possibility or What if they were to happen by withdrawing from any event where they might raise their head.

 

What if was a question that began to freeze me into non-action. It became my worst enemy. Through counseling, medication, and prayer, the dread has been lifted. Today What if has become my best friend. Here is the change…

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A Conversation with Scott Eblin: “Leaders Control the Weather!”

Podcast: Episode 5 & Blog

Lightning storm over city - 40609402

 

It’s been fun researching best practices of world-class leaders. When I spoke to Scott Eblin, President of the Eblin Group, I was stunned when he challenged me with this statement:

 

Leaders control the weather!

 

After letting it sink in, he continued that in the office the leader literally throws a switch on the atmosphere the team functions in. Is it

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How Better Beats Best!

How Better Beats Best!

 

My heart sank when our Pomeranian, Penelope Lynn, escaped the front door and careened across the yard, heading directly toward an approaching car. Since she has more job security in my family than I do, I raced to head her off. As I neared the street, due to what felt was jet propulsion, I lost my footing and found myself hurling head first toward the concrete. In an attempt to break my fall, I threw my hands forward. I was somewhat successful. First, Penelynn is fine. For some reason, the first question I’m always asked is “how’s the dog”. Second, my fall was broken, no concussion or facial abrasions. Smile intact.

 

Unfortunately, it came at the expense of

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Raising the Bar

Raising the Bar

 

I really didn’t want to work out this morning. I had a very late night at the computer compiling notes from a coaching session which I thought gave me an excuse to hit the snooze a few times. After struggling to get out from under the covers, I decided there wasn’t enough time to get in both cardio and strength training. But maybe I could spend a few minutes on the elliptical machine, kind of a cross-country skiing machine that lightens the load on aging knees and ankles (that’s what old people tell me they wrestle with).

 

As I walked into the gym, the owner of Thermal Fitness, Rodrick Woods, was pushing one of his clients beyond what they thought were their limits. In between their grunting (and I think profanity), I asked Rodrick “What are YOU doing to raise the bar today?” He and I have this cool relationship, I pointed out to him that his gift was to work on body and health, I work on head and heart.

 

His response was evasive. He answered my question with a question:

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Does Past History Help to Predict Future Performance?

Attitude Over Skill Skinny Weightlifter - 50691943_m

 

The recruiting process is supposedly designed to ferret out talent a potential employee possesses, to provide insight in selecting the right person to join our team. So why do people appear to succeed in previous roles, then fall short of expectations when we hire them? Development of recruiting approaches in recent years has honed the process of

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Small Steps

Small Steps - 50819758_m

 

The search for dramatic change in our lives, to make a quantum leap forward is a quest that I believe possesses most of us. There is a hunger inside of us (sometimes self-imposed and sometimes from external forces… i.e. parents, spouses, bosses) to break bad habits, earn more money, complete projects that have been gnawing at us. I have found that the road to drastic changes begins with small steps, simple shifts that lead to remarkable outcomes.

 

Late in the day, after countless phone calls to secure new projects or arrange interviews for candidates I had recruited, I was ready to call it quits and

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