Recent Blog Articles

mistakes to learn from

Learn from Your Mistakes and You’ll Never Truly Fail

“Someone call 911!” I was in line at the post office last week when I heard this. I’d left my phone in my truck. The person next to me was dialing. Now, I’m not an EMT or anything, but I was a lifeguard for many years. I looked around at the disorientation and panic on…

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startup capital venture investment

Growth for Growth’s Sake is Bullshit

“Growth for growth’s sake is bullshit.” –Brett Sharenow, Broadscope Consulting Why do you want your business to grow? Do you know? We’re conditioned to think that more is always better—especially when it comes to money. But many people don’t realize that growth, done improperly, can destroy a business faster than anything else. Be careful what…

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carousel excuse

Excuses, Excuses: The Carousel

Manager: “How’s it going?” Employee: “Oh, man, I’m dealing with my ex-wife again. Had to bail her out of jail last night again.” M: “Wow, that sounds dramatic.” E: “Ha, never a dull moment with her still in my life, even when she’s not supposed to be. But until our daughter grows up, I guess…

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excuses taking out of context

Excuses, Excuses: Taking Out of Context

Over in my weekly newsletter, I’ve been discussing a series of excuses you’ll often encounter with your employees (or with people in general). I have a whole series of ways in which people avoid accountability. If you’re not already subscribed to the newsletter, you’re missing out on exclusive content that doesn’t get published anywhere else.…

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truth sets you free

Josef Ruins Everything

“I can’t wait to get out of this little town,” she said. “I’m so bored here. How do you stand it?” My friend Sarah and I were both seventeen, and she was bragging about her new summer camp counselor job. She was getting ready to leave the next day for the woods of Maine, where…

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One BIG Way You’re Making Yourself Stupid

Last week, for the first time ever, I left my iPhone at a friend’s house. No, I didn’t panic. I have an iPad, and I can make phone calls from my iMac. Yeah, I’m an Apple guy. So I ended up not having the phone for about twenty-four hours, and I noticed something extraordinary. I…

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Path to success is failure

To Succeed, Do It Badly at First

I’ve had a number of conversations with my clients recently that sound kind of like this: Me: So how are your development meetings with your employees going? Client: Um, yeah, I’m kinda not doing those. Me: Okay, why not? Client: Well, I just don’t feel like I know how to do it yet. Me: What’s…

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What is Life Waiting for You to Be?

Someone asked me recently how I became a “business therapist,” a playful term I sometimes use to describe my role. It’s not a path I ever would have imagined for myself when I started on it, but looking back I can see the clear progression that got me here. As I relayed the story again…

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The Journey Is the Destination

I’ve written before about how the re-branding of Clear and Open challenged me to grow, and the process continues. It’s been a process of self-discovery and realization that is finally more harvest than toil. You may have noticed the tone of my writing changed. This was not an accident, it’s the result of realizing that…

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getting fired is a good thing

How PO Boxes and Burritos Got Me Fired

The first time I got fired, I was twenty-three. It was 1997 and I’d just completed nine straight lazy summers as a lifeguard and swim instructor, followed by a disastrous attempt at substitute teaching in the Bay Area. Unpredictable, early hours and hardened city kids ate me alive. When it drove me to afternoon drinking,…

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