Leadership Mints Series Sampler Fending Off The Debbie Downers

How many people do you know who light up the room when they leave? Those Debbie Downers and Charlie Complainers are magnets of misery always trying to pull you down.  Their pernicious pool of negativity runs deep. How deep? Well, in Roget’s Thesaurus, twice as many words focus on the negative (2,286) than on the positive (1,051). In Sisson’s Synonyms, there are:

6 times as many words that mean “to Break” as there are “to Build” (186-26)

4 times as many words that mean “Sad” as there are that mean “Glad” (110-27)

3 times as many words that mean “Bad” as there are that mean “Good” (465-150).

In The Ten Commandments “No” or “Not” is mentioned 12 times compared to only two positive commands. And twice as many people will be told about a negative experience as a positive experience, according to government customer service survey.

It’s too easy to complain, to chastise, to put yourself down the way Garfield does in the comic strip: “Do you know where I’m residing? Garfield asks. “Bored city, that’s where. But not for long, with a positive mental attitude, I can whip it. I think I’ll make a lateral move — to Self-Pity. Another comic-strip character adds to the Pity Party.

Ziggy says: “Every time opportunity knocks, I’m out in the back taking out the garbage.” And Ziggy adds: “On the highway of life I keep getting stuck in the cul de sacs”.

The most effective leaders know that it’s too easy to see ourselves as helpless, hopeless, worthless, loveless, friendless, faceless and even lifeless.

It’s too easy to growl, glower and grumble. It’s too easy to destroy what is –rather than deploy – what could be. It’s too easy to focus on the inevitability of the mediocre and never even consider the possibility of the meteoric. 

No wonder the most effective leaders embrace the notion that even though scientists can produce absolute zero temperature (-459 degrees) there is no limit on how hot something can get as long as enough energy is available. That’s what leaders do. They…

Create the energy for positive outcomes.
And light the room wherever they go!

For more ideas on how you can add meaning to the mundane in taking your leadership thinking to the next level purchase a 296-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) of examples from business, sports and politics. One of the three books in The Leadership Mints Series, it is titled THINKING Like a Leader.

All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint. The other two are LOVING Like a Leader and SPEAKING Like a Leader.

All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint. The other two are LOVING Like a Leader and SPEAKING Like a Leader.

The 3-books
in The Leadership Mints Series
available on Amazon.com
in print and e-book

What is a Leadership Mint?

Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.

Leadership Mints Series Sampler On Maintaining Your Honor

What would you do? You’re a cop. You pull over a speeding vehicle down a busy street. You approach the driver and realize your speeder is Ulysses S. Grant –the sitting President of the United States. All alone. No Secret Service. No political aides. No newspaper reporters.

The Officer did his duty. He impounded Grant’s horse and buggy and forced the President of the United States to walk four blocks home to The White House.

President Grant didn’t try to pull rank on the young officer, even though Grant enjoyed celebrity status as a Civil War Hero who accepted General Robert E. Lee’s surrender less than a decade earlier.

And the officer didn’t question his own authority to enforce the law against the President, no matter how much more comforting and face-saving for both of them.

Both the President and the Officer acted Honorably.   
They didn’t just obey the law. They honored it.
They respected it. They revered it. They paid homage to it

      ON THEIR HONOR, the President and the Officer preserved the notion that no man is above the law. They honored each other’s professional duty and personal principles. They validated each other’s rights and responsibilities.

      ON THEIR HONOR, some leaders even brand themselves with their allegiance to honor. They wear an Honor Ring as a constant reminder and driver of their leadership premise, promise and purpose. For 50 years, General Sam Houston wore his Honor Ring – a gold ring inscribed with the word “Honor.  In doing the honors, General Houston fought for what he believed in, for what he lived for, for what he would die for –his honor.

For more ideas on leading with honor that challenges your sense of duty consider purchasing a 300-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) on examples from business, sports and politics.

It’s titled:   LOVING Like a Leader with Empathy– one of three books in The Leadership Mints Series designed to help leaders refresh their feeling for leading. And as a bonus, the postscript titled– BUSINESS: A HUMAN EXPERIENCE — shares the impetus for this book on empathy impacting the bottom line.The two other books in The Leadership Mints Series -now available on Amazon.com — include THINKING Like a Leader with Clarity and SPEAKING Like a Leader with Civility.

What ‘s a Leadership Mint?

Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.

The 3-books
in The Leadership Mints Series
available on Amazon.com
in print and e-book

Leadership Mints Series Sampler On Championing Checklists

Emergency! Emergency! When an emergency situation erupts, you can be suddenly thrown for a loss.   You’re frozen in fear. You’re paralyzed in uncertainty.

So disoriented, you’re looking but not seeing. Everything seems so barren, so vast and so vacant. You’re sure you been banished to a terrifying tundra of oblivion.

But then off in the distance you see a campfire flickering. You find your bearings the closer you get to the light. There you will find other wanderers like yourself seeking the same refuge, seeking others to band together –and even bond together—to better cope with and eventually overcome this crisis.

That campfire burning brightly in the cold tundra of an emergency situation could become a meaningful metaphor that champions the value and vision of your emergency procedures checklist.

Then you’d leverage your checklist from the tactical  
(how-to)  to the more strategic (way to).

For example, with a checklist thoughtfully-developed and communicated to all concerned, you will have a proven WAY TO overcome the hierarchial blind spots that could have prevented the deadliest accident in aviation history in 1977.

A checklist could have provided a WAY TO prevent 583 passengers from being killed when two airliners collided on the runway. The pilot was sure he heard the tower say his plane was cleared for takeoff. The co-pilot heard the opposite. You guessed it: The co-pilot was right. On takeoff in a fog over the Canary Islands, the Boeing 747 crashed into another Boeing 747 that had just lifted off in the opposite direction.

A checklist would have clarified and coordinated roles and responsibilities so the pilot and the co-pilot working together could efficiently regain and maintain stability collaboratively (who’s doing what) and compatibly (right people doing the right things).

Without a checklist in place for this particular emergency,  the co-pilot “never believed he had permission, let alone the duty, to halt the captain and clear up the confusion,” notes author Atul Gawande in his book The Checklist Manifesto.

That’s why a checklist is a Way-To snap everyone to attention to what really matters NOW  –no matter how blank and bleak your view from that that terrifying tundra. And of course no matter how stunned and shocked you are when an emergency slaps you in the face and leaves you feeling so raw, so vulnerable and so very empty.

A checklist is a Way-To thaw that tundra IMMEDIATELY to minimize mistakes and maximize creative and inclusive problem-solving with a snap back into reality.

FLY THE AIRPLANE screams Item #1 on the checklist when an air plane engine shuts down in mid-flight with only one pilot aboard. Without that checklist, disoriented pilots then get so busy trying to restart the engine and checking fuel pumps and valves they lose control of the plane and it crashes.

A check-list is also a WAY TO engage and empower a team notes surgeon Jan Newman. Each member of the surgical team is first acknowledged. Then all have to agree on the procedure, on the identity of patient and on the specific location of the surgery (e.g. right or left leg), especially when they are forced to operate under the proverbial light of a campfire. Even in the vast nothingness of a tundra.

For more ideas on how you can add meaning to the mundane in taking your leadership thinking to the next level purchase a 296-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) of examples from business, sports and politics. One of the three books in The Leadership Mints Series, it is titled THINKING Like a Leader.

All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint. The other two are LOVING Like a Leader and SPEAKING Like a Leader.

The 3-books
in The Leadership Mints Series
available on Amazon.com
in print and e-book

What is a Leadership Mint?

Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.

Leadership Mints Series Sampler On Leveraging The Details

No brown M&Ms. The rock band’s concert contract stipulated that a bowl of M&Ms be available backstage with a key provision: no brown M&Ms.
Lead singer David Lee Roth of Van Halen had a method behind his madness.

The no Brown M&Ms served as a bellwether for the rock band to determine how thoroughly the venue fulfilled the critical requirements in the contract such as the height of ceilings and the weight tolerance of the stage. David Lee Roth grabbed the tiger of success by “detail.”

So did Bo Schembechler. The University of Michigan legendary football coach carried a yardstick on the practice football field to make sure his linemen aligned themselves 24 inches from each other. Not an inch more.

Schembechler led Michigan to 13 Big Ten Conference Championships and a ranking among the top 10 teams in the nation 16 seasons. Bo Schembechler grabbed the tiger of success “by detail”

      So did actor Ray Bolger. The Scarecrow in the The Wizard of Oz, Bolger would not appear on the movie set until someone  counted the pieces of  straw sticking out of his arms. The straw count had to be consistent with the previous day’s straw count. Ray Bolger grabbed the tiger of success “by detail.”

Indeed, no detail is too small for the most effective leaders who embrace the message in this  proverb on the woes of a lack of attention to detail :

“For want of a nail, the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe, the horse was lost.
For want of a horse, the rider was lost.
For want of a rider, the battle was lost.
         For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost.”

For more ideas on how you can add meaning to the mundane in taking your leadership thinking to the next level purchase a 296-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) of examples from business, sports and politics. One of the three books in The Leadership Mints Series, it is titled THINKING Like a Leader.

All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint. The other two are LOVING Like a Leader and SPEAKING Like a Leader.

The 3-books
in The Leadership Mints Series
available on Amazon.com
in print and e-book

What is a Leadership Mint?

Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.

Leadership Mints Series Sampler On Results-Driven Goal-Setting

Goals. The corporate executive scrawled the word—goals—quickly on the marker board. So quickly that the “a” and the “l” fused together to look like a “d”.

The word –goals – looked very much like the word –gods. That Freudian slip was not lost on these strategic planners attending a goal-setting business meeting.

Like religion, goals are often infused with a dogma and a fervor that inspires a martyr-like dedication to the hallowed script of goal-setting: the To Do list.

PETER JEFF
The Leadership Mints Guy

But effective goal-setting begins first with a more purposeful and purpose-filled DUE To list, long before you develop a To Do list.

A DUE TO list is comprised of long-range commitments that bring goals into a clearer, more realistic focus.

A DUE TO list keeps your goals on track: well connected to the Train of Thought and fully linked to the Engine of Purpose.

Like a train, effective goal-setting is a process of linking
not listing— linking a list of things To Do

to a clearer rationale
that is DUE TO a higher purpose. 

For example, DUE TO the value I place in hiking and swimming with my grandchildren each summer, I will lose 30 pounds in 30 weeks. The DUE TO (enjoying grandchildren) drives the To do action step (losing weight). And the power of purpose links the two and keeps your train of thought on track to reach your goal.

For more ideas on how you can add meaning to the mundane in taking your leadership thinking to the next level purchase a 296-page book now available on Amazon. com filled with 77 short stories (5-minute reads called Leadership Mints) of examples from business, sports and politics. One of the three books in The Leadership Mints Series, it is titled THINKING Like a Leader.

All three books in The Leadership Mints Series are designed for busy leaders seeking to refresh their feeling for leading in 5-minutes or less — the average reading of a Leadership Mint. The other two are LOVING Like a Leader and SPEAKING Like a Leader.

That book on thinking like a leader is the first of three books in The Leadership Mints Series designed to help leaders refresh their feeling for leading with short stories (called Leadership Mints) you can grab ‘n go  like a candy mint.The two others books focus on leading with empathy LOVING LIKE A LEADER and leading with civility SPEAKING LIKE A LEADER.

The 3-books
in The Leadership Mints Series
available on Amazon.com
in print and e-book

What is a Leadership Mint?

Consumed like a breath mint — quick and on-the-go — a Leadership Mint is a short story that energizes leadership behaviors and personalizes leadership principles so they are more easily remembered, more readily acted upon and more fully applied.