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Hiring a Gunslinger

Posted by on January 11, 2016 in Corporate Team Leadership, Effective Leadership, Leadership Development, Team Building, Team Development, Team Leadership, Workplace Environment | 0 comments

Hiring a Gunslinger

Have you ever worked for a company who hired an outside consultant to fill a role that you believed you were qualified to fill? Maybe you were even so bold as to make sure that your boss knew that you wanted that promotion and were excited and eager to take on new responsibilities. But in the end, the boss hired an outside consultant—a “gunslinger from out of town.”

There’s nothing wrong with hiring an outside consultant. In fact, I’m one myself. But “how” and “why” the company decides to hire the outside consultant is just as important to the outcome as the consultant who is eventually hired, or the loyal team members who were passed over–again.

Sometimes the motivation behind hiring an outside consultant isn’t made strategically, but rather out of panic or convenience–a desperate search to fill an imagined skills void, or more likely a “management confidence” void. If the choice to hire an outside consultant doesn’t come from a strategic decision-making process, one that seriously evaluates and considers using in-house talent–then the end result may leave a wake of chaos on your team—akin to when the gunslinger rides into town, leaves a wake of chaos wherever he goes to solve a short-term need, and then rides away to let the townspeople clean up the mess.

It’s not hard to imagine yourself as that loyal employee, performing the job you’re hired to do. Many times you’ve gone the extra mile and worked late to make sure a project was completed on time. Then, when an opportunity for a promotion to an exciting project is right in front of you, the boss hires an outside consultant and doesn’t even bother to discuss the appointment with you or anyone else on the team. You just show up one day to find that a gunslinger was summoned from out of town, and he’s sitting in the boss’ office with the door closed.

This kind of “we’ve got a problem, so hire a gunslinger” scenario runs rampant in many companies. The boss looks down at her organizational chart and sees the names of familiar faces, and it seems like a risk to promote one of them into a role they’ve never had before. After all, if they fail, then the boss is also seen as a failure.  It’s extremely convenient to hire an outside consultant who has a track record of competence in that “one particular skill” the project requires. We never seem to have time to train an existing team member, or just give an eager team member more responsibility and let them bloom.

See my recent Association for Talent Development article to see how this “Quick! Hire a gunslinger!” mentality can affect your team, and how to boldly reject this mindset and instead trust in the ability and strengths already present on your Surging Team.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner can take to boldly trust your team members and their combined strengths, in order to solve the problems your team will inevitably encounter as they pursue complex and important company goals.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

What is the Passion Behind Your 2016 Business Plan?

Posted by on January 4, 2016 in Effective Leadership, Franchise Management, Franchise Ownership, Small Business Ownership, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Development, Team Leadership, Workplace Environment | 0 comments

What is the Passion Behind Your 2016 Business Plan?

Most experienced leaders will have a business plan ready to begin 2016, but does your plan inspire the passion of those who will be asked to see it through in the months to come?

I’ll never forget the comments made by the department dean, to my daughter’s physical therapy assistant graduating class, “There are few occupations in this world where your touch is a part of someone’s healing, and you have the privilege of being in one.” I was struck by the powerful simplicity of this statement. It reminded all of us in attendance that we all share a powerful human need for the touch of another person, and that a gentle touch alone is healing. I never thought about it before, but touch and kindness from the healer is a significant part of a patient’s healing–almost as much as choosing the right treatment plan. As an attendee, I had a new respect for those who were receiving their certifications, and I could feel the collective pride in the auditorium swell, as each recipient was welcomed into such a noble profession.

I once had a business consulting client who was the CEO of a not-for-profit, and she was blind from birth. She made me feel comfortable with her lack of sight, by joking that I was the disadvantaged once because I always needed to turn on the lights when we would enter her conference room. On one particular visit to her conference room, we were preparing for a meeting with an auditor, but before the meeting started she asked me, “Scott, what’s wrong?”

“Nothing’s wrong,” I responded, “I’m prepared for the auditor.”

“I don’t mean that Scott, I mean that you seem to be feeling stress right now,” she clarified. “Don’t worry, you’re among friends here.”

Can you imagine how I felt after my client, who could not see my face or how I was sitting in my chair, was able to both know that I was having a bad day, and also in just a sentence or two help me to heal with just her words? I thought I was there to help her with the auditor, but she was also helping me. This CEO had created a sensitive and healing environment, and she had extended this environment to include me.

Think about your business plan again, in light of the above encounters. Will each of your employees feel so passionately about your company’s bold purpose, that clients, colleagues, and vendors alike will be positively impacted? Or is your business plan simply a call for increased revenue and a “nose to the grindstone” push to sell more products and services?

Given the inevitable and unpredictable ups and downs of life, where will your employees go to recharge themselves during a year-long drive to achieve your company’s goals? Your staff depends on each other for this critical support, and also on the culture that has developed within the company where they spend the majority of their working life. What happens when their working environment does not support an atmosphere of increasing the positive well-being of the staff, or even becomes a source of negative feelings? I’m sure you can imagine the impact this might have on the next customer encounter, when an employee can’t completely hide their inner tension, and the incremental negative impact this will have on plan achievement.

That’s how important it is to intentionally develop an office culture that increases the well-being of your employees, and provides them with a bold and passionate purpose that transcends the daily challenges of our lives. Your customers and vendors will know within seconds if your office culture has a negative atmosphere. It’s critical to your profits to work boldly for an office environment that increases the well-being of your workers, so they can in turn increase the well-being of their colleagues, clients, and vendors. I call this office culture, “A Surging Team”, and the leaders responsible for their teams must intentionally work to make sure that their company culture is one that increases the well-being of those who encounter it. If you’ve ever worked in a Surging Team environment, you know it and you remember the positive feelings you shared with your team members for a lifetime. A Surging Team environment has the power to recharge its team members, and keep them mindful of their bold purpose, even when they’re having a bad day.

That’s how important it is for company leaders to make the development and preservation of a Surging Team environment their top priority–and assure there is passion behind their business plan.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner can take to assure there is passion behind your 2016 business plan.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

There is no other phenomenon like it

Posted by on December 28, 2015 in Corporate Team Leadership, Effective Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Leadership Development, Small Business Ownership, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Development, Team Leadership, Workplace Environment | 0 comments

There is no other phenomenon like it

We’re made to embrace rhythms. We thrive on routines. We look forward to annual celebrations with family and friends. We love our Christmas music with its themes of nostalgia, hope, and love. Our American marketplace reflects our cultural rhythms, and we’re witnessing that once again during our Christmas and New Years holidays.

Other than retail, restaurants and entertainment, most non-essential business slows down to barely a perceptible pulse for the weeks that surround our most beloved annual celebrations devoted to our faith, our family and our friends. There is no other phenomenon like it on our calendars, and even our technology-driven, 24/7 mentality succumbs to Christmas’ mysterious power on our American culture.

I hope you’re surrounded by friends and family, somewhere and everywhere across this vast land of ours, enjoying your reprieve from the daily struggle. The American Surging Team is collectively resting and re-energizing itself by remembering and celebrating our ancient cultural heritage, and reinforcing why it is we’re willing to work so hard for most of the other 50 weeks of the year. After we’ve marveled at our Christmas displays, laughed, hugged, cried happy tears, acted alternately silly and extraordinarily generously, and then completed our celebration by raucously and publicly welcoming in a brand new year of hope and promise–only then will we be ready to again get back into the economic arena and pursue our bold company goals with a revived vigor. Even the scrooges and grinches among us must relent to the magnitude of our Christmas and New Years holiday rhythm.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me after our joyous and hopeful national celebrations, and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success in the coming new year.

Until then, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

What is Your Response When Someone Else Wins?

Posted by on December 21, 2015 in Corporate Team Leadership, Effective Leadership, Small Business Ownership, Successful Leadership, Team Leadership | 0 comments

What is Your Response When Someone Else Wins?

Leaders take the long view. In the longer view, success is eventually achieved by doing the things each day that increase the team’s potential and probability of meeting their goals. Along this competitive road to eventual success, sometimes a rival team will score a win. As a leader, what is your response when someone else wins? Here are three responses that the leader of a Surging Team, a team that in the end always wins, should consider–when another team wins.

Demonstrate respect for the winner, and evaluate what can be learned from the loss. Your team is watching how you will respond. Do you remain optimistic or do you look for where to place blame for the loss? Congratulate the success of others, and with a sparkle in your eye, let them know that you and your team will quickly bounce back.

Remind yourself and your team that competition sharpens our ability to remain competitive. Can you identify the signature character strengths that your rival used in order to score their victory? Once you identify what those strengths were, brainstorm with your team to determine what adjustments you can make in order to increase those strengths on your team–in order to remain competitive. Set a date on your team’s calendar for a marketplace rematch.

Take the long view about ultimate success, and continue to do the things each day that are highly correlated to increasing the certainty of your team meeting their goals. How many times does a team relax and take just a little too long congratulating themselves and celebrating a victory, only to find that their competition has not been discouraged and has surged back? Prepare your team to surge back!

A Surging Team, a team that always wins in the end, can accept a temporary setback or loss with grace, and then quickly gather themselves again, with a view to winning the next marketplace competition, on the long road to eventual success.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

What will your team do when an obstacle emerges?

Posted by on December 14, 2015 in Corporate Team Leadership, Effective Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Innovation, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Development, Team Leadership | 0 comments

What will your team do when an obstacle emerges?

In a competitive marketplace, it is guaranteed that your company will face marketplace obstacles & threats in your drive to success, from both external and internal sources.

A competitor is free to engage in competition with your company. At any time, they can step up their efforts to win over your clients to their company–and if your company has been successful, then this will be a certainty.

Your employees are working for you “at will”, and at any time they can quit working for your company with no notice–leaving an immediate skills void that can impact your service levels.

The question is, “What will your team do when an obstacle or threat emerges?”

Leaders of Surging Teams are not immune to the above types of obstacles & threats to their company’s success, indeed there are many more. However, consider the ways that a company which has transformed itself into a Surging Team responds to these obstacles & threats, compared to an ordinary company.

Surging Teams have developed a level of trust among the leadership and individual members that increases each member’s commitment to the team. They experience less turnover and more team loyalty. Even when presented with a competing job offer, they consider other critical factors and not only increased compensation. They know that accepting a new job, for an increase in compensation alone, can feel like a jail sentence if the job does not also maintain or improve their need for happiness and well-being. The leaders of Surging Teams have a goal of increasing these feelings of happiness and well-being for each of their team members. The powerfully positive collective spirit that develops on Surging Teams acts as an unseen force that the competition can’t see, measure, or prepare for. When such teams meet an obstacle, they use peer collaboration to source innovative ideas to get past the obstacle. If no existing best practice exists to defeat the obstacle, then the team leader will implement the innovation to move past the obstacle. They are constantly developing new best practices if the old ones are ineffective.

Regular teams do not have a powerfully positive collective spirit. Most of us have worked for such companies, where no feeling of camaraderie was present. Everyone did their jobs, but there was no spark, no feeling of team trust, and no active efforts by leadership to engage all employees, at all levels, in the company’s bold purpose. These are the jobs in our past that made us feel like we didn’t really matter that much, that the teams we worked on didn’t really needs us, and we longed for something more in exchange for our talents and our time. The key word is that these are jobs, “in our past”, because if you’ve worked in such an environment, you increasingly work to find something better and get out of there, and I hope you do, because there is something better if you know what to look for. When such teams face an obstacle, they usually stop, and the leaders of these teams try and renegotiate their objectives, delegate the task to a “subordinate”, or skillfully pass it along to another department–anything, as long as they don’t have to face the obstacle or threat themselves.

I’ve worked on both kinds of teams, but my times working on or leading Surging Teams were the best times in my career, and in the careers of everyone who worked on those teams alongside me. I know, because years later they still tell me. Everyone longs to work among a team of people who share a bold and worthy purpose, where each member of the team is challenged to use their most highly developed skills, and then together work to overcome the most daunting marketplace obstacles in a desperate and passionate drive to win. This is what we’re made to do, and when you work in such a Surging Team environment, you know it.

So, what will your team do when it faces a threat or obstacle? I know for certain what a Surging Team will do–they will find a way to win, together.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

Looking Into the Eyes of Someone Who Knows You

Posted by on December 7, 2015 in Effective Leadership, Leadership Development, Leadership Training, Small Business Ownership, Successful Leadership, Team Development, Team Leadership, Workplace Environment | 0 comments

Looking Into the Eyes of Someone Who Knows You

We do our best work when we’re working together, toward a shared goal, with people who know something more about us than our names. Why?

The other day, I saw am older woman kiss her husband as he dropped her off to work at Wal-Mart. They kissed the kiss of decades of familiarity, a brief kiss as they looked into each other’s face with a smile. I saw the kiss, and then as I passed the woman I said to her, “I saw you kissing Santa.” Her face lit up, and she told me how long she’d known “Santa” and how little time they can spend together because their work schedules don’t align so well these days. But she was beaming as she told me, because somebody saw something about her that was more than just her work persona. She asked about me (revealing her emotional intelligence), if I was married and for how long. I told her about my wife and how long we’d been married, and we looked at each other and smiled, and I could sense that feelings of increased well-being between two people were present. Then we wished each other a Merry Christmas, and I went to find the thing that I needed at Wal-Mart and she went back to greeting people like me.

This brief encounter with a stranger reminded me of the most powerful advantage that a Surging Team has in the marketplace. A Surging Team, led by an inspired and skilled leader, develops a powerfully positive collective spirit between team members, which acts as a source of hope and strength. The team leader who successfully increases feelings of well-being among his team creates the conditions for a powerful and positive collective spirit to emerge. Once it does, it only takes a look from your team members to remember your great value to the team and know that they are steadfastly behind you and behind your shared team purpose. Your competition can’t see or measure the collective spirit of your team, but it is the element that, when present, will launch a team of ordinary people past their competition almost every time. A Surging Team trusts each other and believes that together, they’ll always find a way to win.

How does a team develop this level of trust, hope and power–which can be invoked with just a glance from a team member? That is the subject of my book, which outlines the 10 BOLDskills that the leader of such a team must master. But the short answer is that each member of a Surging Team must genuinely feel that they are known and valued for the individual strengths that they bring to the team. Every time they meet, they increase their feelings of well-being just by looking at one another. They know and trust the person behind the eyes they’re looking into.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

There is Only One Thing To Do

Posted by on November 30, 2015 in Effective Leadership, Leadership Development, Leadership Training, Successful Leadership | 0 comments

There is Only One Thing To Do

On December 10, 1914, the New York Times published an article that detailed the nearly total destruction by fire of Thomas Edison’s vast facility in New Jersey, where he and his nearly 7,000 employees were working on his inventions, including prototypes of his newest invention, the “talking machines”.

Imagine you are 67 years old, and you see almost everything you’ve worked on in your life destroyed in one night. What would be your reaction?

If I told you that Thomas Edison was an optimist, I doubt you would still be able to imagine the extent of his hopefullness, which was captured in the title of this blog entry. When asked by a reporter what he would do, he said, “There is only one thing to do, and that is to jump right in and rebuild.” He went on to clarify, “Although I am over 67 years old, I’ll start all over again tomorrow. I’m pretty well burned out tonight.”

This is a staggering display of optimism. Edison takes hopefullness to an extent that few of us who are optimists would dare to go. The next day, with the buildings still smoldering, Edison is quoted as saying, “There is great value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God we can start anew.” Spending time to grieve over such a major loss was not an option for Edison. He viewed the fire as an opportunity.

When leaders embrace a boldly optimistic view, even in the face of almost certain defeat, they inspire their teams to courageously “get back to work”, remember their shared purpose together, and look past the fears of today and focus on a vision of success for tomorrow. Edison had nearly half of his employees report to work on the day after the fire, salvaging what they could, and beginning to clear away the rubble of his “mistakes” to start anew.

Can you see the great value in the “disasters” in your business or in your career?

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

Leaders, Unstoppable Surging Teams, and Destiny

Posted by on November 23, 2015 in Effective Leadership, Leadership Training, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Leadership | 0 comments

Leaders, Unstoppable Surging Teams, and Destiny

In 1803, president Thomas Jefferson wrote of his personal secretary and soon-to-be leader of a dangerous exploration team:

“Of courage undaunted, possessing a firmness & perseverance of purpose which nothing but impossibilities could divert from it’s direction, careful as a father of those committed to his charge, yet steady in the maintenance of order & discipline…”

He was writing about his selection of Captain Meriwether Lewis, as the leader of an expedition charged with exploring the uncharted territory recently acquired as part of his “Louisiana Purchase”. Traveling only by boat and on foot, with no means of communication other than “sending a few expedition members back”, Captain Lewis’ Corps of Discovery was comprised of 35 men who set off from St. Louis, through unknown territory, for an unknown amount of time, and along a route of unknown length. After more than a year without word from the expedition, they were feared dead, until they miraculously reappeared in St. Louis after more than 28 months and 7,400 miles.

In his personal journal, Captain Lewis explains the long period of silence from his expedition:

“…sending three men back might possibly discourage those who would in such case remain…all [the men] appear perfectly to have made up their minds to succeed in the expedition or purish [sic] in the attempt. We all believe that we are now about to enter on the most perilous and difficult part of our voyage, yet I see no one repining; all appear ready to met [sic] those difficulties which wait us with resolution and becoming fortitude.”

Captain Lewis knew that the best and possibly the only way to complete his nearly impossible mission, was to break from his promised communication back to president Jefferson, and instead keep his surging team together. They would triumph or they would die together.

Are you leading an unstoppable Surging Team charged with critical company objectives?

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan book , “The Surging Team“, was selected by the 2015 USA Best Book Awards as a Finalist in the Business Management & Leadership category. “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success” is the book’s companion video training series which offers 5 hours of lively discussion and exercises to further explore the concepts in each chapter. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

The Single Biggest Predictor of Success

Posted by on November 16, 2015 in Effective Leadership, Entrepreneurship, Franchise Ownership, Leadership Development, Leadership Training, Small Business Ownership, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Development, Team Leadership | 0 comments

The Single Biggest Predictor of Success

When I was a franchise owner, I joined a mastermind group comprised of a dozen owners who dared to do better and wanted to achieve more profitability. This group, the Pacesetters, produced 8 consecutive franchise of the year winners and an equal number of million dollar sales recipients.

Of course, our franchisor wanted to extend this kind of success throughout the franchise system, and believed that there was a personality profile among the Pacesetters that predicted success. The DISC profile system was chosen as the methodology of personality categorization, which places people into four main personality types, “D”ominance, “I”nfluence, “S”teadiness or “C”ompliance, and the members of our Pacesetter group took the DISC assessment. When the group results were in, which of these four quadrants do you think we fell into?

Did you guess, “all of them?”, because that’s what happened. There was no single personality profile that predicted who would be successful. Our Pacesetter members selected into all four DISC groups.

There is a value in understanding your personality type, and realizing how you relate to others. There is a bigger value in accepting that your personality type is not the best way for everyone to achieve success. It is eye opening when you see proof that personality types which are more introverted or analytical, are just as likely to succeed than the extroverts who move quickly on little information other than their own assessment.

Ok, so what was the biggest predictor of success among the Pacesetters? At the time we had no idea, other than we knew that participation in our group was somehow part of the equation.

It wasn’t until I sold my business (profitably) that I found out. I was attending a conference of business consultants and one of the conference speakers was Dr. Martin Seligman. I’d never heard of him. His presentation wasn’t dynamic, but what he had to say stunned me. It answered the conundrum of why our Pacesetter group had so many successful members.

Dr. Seligman explained that those who understand their most highly developed character strengths, and consciously use them in their work, will experience increased happiness and well-being. When you combine this trait (understanding and using your strengths) with optimism, then you have the winning formula. Our group became highly optimistic that we’d each succeed and our well-being increased when we were together. We supported each others’ drive to success by contributing our individual character strengths. In other words, we were participating in a group that was optimistically dedicated to the success of each member, and then we had the potent benefit of all the combined personality strengths of the Pacesetter group members focused on our individual success. Unknowingly, when we met together each quarter for an intensive “limelight” session to focus on improving the business of one of our members, we were also practicing using our individual character strengths in the service of our “limelighted” member.

The bottom line: “Participation in a group that is dedicated to achieving success in their businesses, through the persistent use of the most highly developed character strengths of all group members” is the biggest predictor of success.

Are you participating in a group that increases your well-being and offers you the combined character strengths of each group member in a single-minded drive for the success of each member? If not, I bet you’re thinking about it now.

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss the actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan is author of the now-available-on-Amazon book, “The Surging Team” and companion video training series, “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success”. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.

Do Deadlines and Pressure Increase Success?

Posted by on November 9, 2015 in Corporate Team Leadership, Effective Leadership, Leadership Development, Leadership Training, Successful Leadership, Team Building, Team Leadership | 0 comments

Do Deadlines and Pressure Increase Success?

To many people, the thought of a looming deadline and the resulting pressure is the embodiment of their biggest fear. To this group of people, putting yourself in a high pressure situation is to be avoided if at all possible. Let’s take an example: giving a speech in front of an audience. A speech has a deadline (the date of the speech) and it requires the speaker to assemble a presentation that is relevant and interesting to the expected audience. Many people have a fear of public speaking, and the very thought of giving a speech sparks a flight-or-fight fear response that prevents them from accepting a public speaking opportunity. Groups like Toastmasters exist specifically because of the extremely common fear reaction to public speaking.

Ok, people fear deadlines and they fear having their thoughts and ideas rejected. But do deadlines and pressure increase success for those who accept the challenge?

To get to this point, most people have already opted-out of the opportunity due to fear, and the success pool has been considerably narrowed. In fact, the higher the pressure, the greater the fear, and the smaller the pool of those who are willing and able to accept the challenge and face the deadlines, pressure and the very real fear of failure.

The resulting pool now is further narrowed by procrastination. Those who are willing and able, now fall into two groups, those who procrastinate and those who begin. There is no evidence to support that procrastination is aligned with success, just the opposite. Ask any college student or better yet ask their professors. You may get the project done the night before it’s due, but the quality of the result will suffer accordingly. If you don’t leave time to practice your speech, chances are you will not be very successful.  You may pass your class, but successfulness is more than meeting minimum requirements.

So now we’re down to those who are willing and able to accept the project and deadlines, and who don’t procrastinate. The pool is again considerably narrowed.

The final self-selection is between those who seek perfection and those who focus on the success of their project. Time and again, the quest for perfection results in failure, because perfection by definition is unachievable by humans. Those pursing perfection will inevitably fail.  If you need evidence of this, do a little research on the Naive Bayes algorithm.  It’s the imperfect methodology used in search engines and email spam filters.  Without it, there would be no Google and our email inbox would be impossible to maintain.

We are now in the company of a very small group of willing and able people, who use all the time they have before their deadline, and are focused on success in their objective and not on perfection.

This group of people creatively uses the constraints of the project as a beginning. Think of an artist that faces a blank canvass, or a writer who stares at a blank Word Document. Constraints are a place to begin.  In fact, some artists impose constraints on their projects where no constraint exists, just to get beyond a blank canvass.

In my book, The Surging Team, I identify the five conditions that a leader cultivates and uses to find innovative solutions to difficult problems:

  • Urgency (deadlines)
  • A bold purpose (what is driving you and your team)
  • Clear accountability (win or lose, it is your project)
  • The well-being of those who are pursing the objective (happier people are able to see opportunities)
  • Ability to collaborate and use ideas outside of your own (openness)

So, do deadlines and the resulting pressure increase success?  The answer is YES they do.  Success can only be awarded to those few people who self-select into the group who give themselves and their teams a chance to succeed, while everyone else is busy chasing perfection, procrastinating, or skillfully avoiding pressure and fearful opportunities.

Are you among these few?

BOLDbreak has one purpose, and that is to provide team leaders and company owners the tools and training they need, to develop an unstoppable Surging Team, a team that repeatedly succeeds in achieving difficult and important company objectives. When teams win, increased company profitability follows! Contact me today and let’s discuss that actions that you as the team leader or company owner need to take in order to lead your team to success.

Until then, Keep Winning!

Scott Brennan is author of the now-available-on-Amazon book, “The Surging Team” and companion video training series, “10 BOLDskills℠ for Accelerated Team Success”. Scott succeeded in developing both award-winning corporate teams, as well as transforming his franchise business into an award-winning and profitable, Surging Team. Now as president of BOLDbreak Inc, Scott is positioned to help you increase your company’s productivity, profitability and employee well-being by offering you an exciting methodology, in both a book and video format, to assist you in developing and leading your own unstoppable Surging Team. Contact him to get started.