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Archive for the ‘Leadership’ Category

Becoming A Stronger Spiritual Leader

Learn Grow LeadTo state things simply, a man is made to lead. This is a God given, innate desire and calling for every man, but becoming a strong spiritual leader does not happen by chance. This would be the obvious place to start listing things you should do, like reading your Bible daily, praying daily and meeting with a weekly men’s group who will challenge and encourage you. While these are key ingredients, I’d like you to consider another approach.

If you read the title and thought there was room for you to grow as a spiritual leader, the first step is deciding to. You will be finished reading this in the next 60 seconds, and it will be very easy to move on with your day without changing anything. Nothing is more difficult than change. Nothing is more difficult than doing something one way for an extended period of time and then stopping and restarting. I get that! I’m challenging you to do something every man needs to. Decide right now you are going to become a stronger spiritual leader for yourself and your family.

If you said yes to the challenge, increasing your intimacy with God is the next step. You can do the practical things listed above, but these disciplines without intimacy with the Father wither in time. Without relationship you will find yourself at the beginning of each year renewing old resolutions. Revelation 2:5 “…Repent and do what you did at first.” This is the path to spiritual growth.

So if intimacy is key, how do I increase it? Great question! How would you go about increasing intimacy with your wife and children? The answer is obvious isn’t it? TIME. Your spiritual leadership becomes stronger in proportion to your time spent with Jesus.

When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. Acts 4:13 I want that said of me! How about you?

Will The Real Hero Please Stand Up Series

will-the-real-hero-stand-up-blog-artToday’s post is on my friend Justin Brackett’s site. ( Justin has started a new blog series entitled “Will The Real Hero Please Stand Up”. Over the next month he is having multiple contributors tell who their heroes are and why. Ordinary men standing up and being real men… Heroic men. Check out my post and stay tuned to the rest of the series here: Kindness Changes Lives

Your Greatest Gift To Me Dad

We have all heard how our relationship with our Dad has a lot to do with our relationship with God as our Heavenly Father.  And in the vast majority of story’s I’ve heard the father son relationship has had a negative impact on their relationship with God. As you know, there are so many stories of betrayal, abuse, abandonment and just non-engaged silence.

Dad, you are different! Your level of integrity is rare and it is a blessing to your children. I have told you before that I cannot recall a time when you have let me down. Keeping your word down to the smallest detail is your greatest gift to me. I trust you implicitly. It is no coincidence that I trust God even more. I am so confident that God will keep His promises because you modeled that so well for me. I am convinced that God’s plan for me is to give me a hope and a future because you have represented that to me all along.

Much of your advice, many of your decisions, and all of your discipline, I didn’t like at the time, but I have had the opportunity to reflect and see that your advice was full of wisdom, your decisions were like railroad tracks for me to follow and your discipline was because you loved me. All for my good!  Dad, you have paved the way for my relationship with God and I am forever grateful. Thank you for a job well done and keep up the good work! 

You and I talked about testimonies one time and we joked about you not having one people would pay to hear because it didn’t have some of those “bottom” experiences like mine and others you know, but if you consider where our relationship has come from and that it has been raised from the dead, I think it is an incredible testimony… one a lot of fathers need to hear.

Happy Father’s Day Dad!
All my love,

Ordinary – The Silent Killer

Every organization has a bloodstream.  If you are the owner or are part of the senior management team in your organization, you are the life blood of that organization.  You are the heart that is providing life giving sustenance. You control the atmosphere of the company with your vision, attitude and actions. You have a tremendous amount of influence in how the rest of your “body” (the organization) operates as well as how healthy it is.

If not exercised properly (and sometimes exorcised properly ;0) the organization can become sedentary and prone to infection. The truth is, the organization, like the body, is constantly susceptible to infection and a healthy heart and immune system provide the leadership necessary to maintain vigor.

Many times there are cancers within the organization that if not removed or treated aggressively can kill. Yes I’m talking about people, and often faulty processes. A more subtle killer is ‘ordinary’, employees who are occupying space and time but who aren’t enjoying what they’re doing… Who aren’t challenged at their position… Who aren’t growing. Remember, healthy things grow! How do you spot ordinary? Look for folks who aren’t focused on providing value, both to the company and customers. Ordinary didn’t start your business and ordinary isn’t going to sustain or grow it.

Listen, people matter! I love people, and making the tough decisions about the folks in your organization (for the health of your organization) can be excruciating at times. No doubt! But you not attending to the tough decisions is causing harm to the entire company.

How would you rate the health of your organization today? Sure financials are one way to gauge the health of an organization but an “organizational physical” can be a better way to get an overall fitness level that can help you establish a life expectancy. If you looked at your business as a body today what would its appearance say to you? Do you see a physically fit specimen that’s ready to race or maybe one that’s overweight causing high blood pressure, or do you have a limb that needs to be amputated? Tough question for sure, but you and your leadership team are responsible for your company’s health. See something that needs to change? Act today!

Change Is Hard!

Change is hard! Change is hard for everyone. At dataBridge we work with client’s everyday who have been doing certain business processes the same way for years. It’s what they know and what they have grown accustom to. As we review some of their manual processes we quickly identify how technology can automate things and make them more efficient and productive, yet we very often get resistance simply because it’s different from what they are use to. Woodrow Wilson said” If you want to make enemies, try to change something.” People by nature resist change yet change is an evidence of growth.

The ability to change our “normal” is somewhat painful for everyone but change, no matter how drastic is always available. We are not bound to the conditioning of our past any more than we are limited to our present situation. Each of us have the ability to change; to leave the path we are on and redirect ourselves to a more worthy endeavor.

Acts 3:19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord,

The Bible gives us one of the greatest examples of change in history. Saul once persecuted the followers of Christ. He later became the greatest apostle Christianity has yet produced. He changed. He did not do what he always did. He saw the light and followed his desire to leave the darkness.

Change is hard but you can do it. What one change can you start today? Read 17 Habits That Will Change Your Life… Pick ONE

Take A Great Customer Experience Into Your Relationships

Question: How do you deliver a great customer experience?
Answer: Exceed the customers’ expectations.

This is the simplest most powerful business formula I know but as simple as it sounds, 99 times out of 100 it is your fault if the customer isn’t satisfied.  You have complete control over what your customer expects. You tell them; what will be done, when it will be done, how much it will cost etc. You get to set the playing field, you make the rules, and you are in total control. The secret is making sure you have planned ahead enough to anticipate things that may cause delays or cause the price to change and following through on what you’ve said. Last but not least put some icing on the cake… Plan ahead to add that little bit extra or to deliver it a bit early. You know exactly what the customer is expecting (you told them what to expect remember) so take that and create raving fans for your business by planning in advance to give them just a little more.

Always remember that customers NEVER get upset when their expectations are being set, ONLY when they are not met. So give yourself some extra time or “padding” when setting the customers’ expectations. At dataBridge if a customer isn’t happy it’s our fault. We’ve done something wrong. And if we’re honest it usually boils down to not being able to deliver what we’ve promised when we’ve promised it.

So take this formula home with you. What’s your spouse expecting from you? This one gets a little trickier because if you’ve been married for a while there are two answers to that question.  One is what you’ve said and the other is what they know to be true based on your actions. Either way you have set their expectations (for better or worse). If you give it some thought you can come up with a pretty good idea what they are expecting. Take that and add something to it. Exceed his or her expectations tonight. Then do it again tomorrow. A card, the dishes, your undivided attention… It’s that easy. It’s that powerful.

What are your kids expecting from you? Ditto!

17 Habits That Will Change Your Life… Pick ONE

We all have seasons in our lives where we need a “makeover”. Sometimes it’s when things aren’t going well or our circumstances aren’t the greatest and sometimes we wish there were things about ourselves that were different or better.  OK it’s probably just me. :0) The point is when we get to those places in our lives we usually make a list of half a dozen things or more we’d like to change. Things to start doing… things to stop doing and off we go. For instance here is a sample list most of us can relate to.

I’m going to:

  • Lose 10 pounds
  • Start  weekly ‘date night’ with my spouse
  • Go to the gym three times a week
  • Read more / watch TV less
  • Spend quality time with my kids
  • Work less

While the list above has some great ideas in it, it’s the list that causes most of us to be unsuccessful. (More on this in a minute) Sooner than later life happens: the boss made me work late on my planned date night so now my spouse is mad and I’m alone in front of the TV at midnight eating donuts thinking what a crazy idea it was to join a gym. That’s a funny scenario but come on… not so far-fetched.

We all have full schedules and an array of demands for our time and attention so trying to change too much too quickly will result in failure most of the time. Here’s the secret. Pick One. Pick one habit you’d like to start or stop. Anything at all but just one, and get started. By all means have a list of things you want to do or stop doing but attack them one at a time. Everyone has heard the old adage it takes 21 days to make a habit and it’s true. We’ll guess what; do you know how many 21 day periods there are in a year? 17. That’s right 17! Talk about a Makeover! Imagine what you and your relationships will look like in a year. Imagine what you will feel like in a year. I dare you to start today!

BTW In my first 21 day period my habit was to become a more polite driver. No I’m not the guy yelling with the excessive hand gestures… I’m the one he’s yelling at. Like in football there are two kinds of drivers offensive and defensive. I’m an offensive driver; Kirsten just says I’m offensive. Want to know what my second 21 day habit is? Same thing. I’m getting better but not quite there yet. I should have picked something easier to start with. What’s your first habit going to be? Are you willing to tell everyone in the comment section?

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