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Today's Challenge: A Heart Transplant

I open some of my talks by telling the audience the presentation they are about to hear is not for them. After I let that sink in, I ask them to think of a leader they know who has failed to live up to their potential or perhaps the person who comes to mind is stuck in their career. I then tell them, “This talk is about how you may be able to help your friend.”

The Cross-functional Team Advantage

I’ve been a baseball fan my entire life. I started playing the game when I was 5 or 6 years old – a little late by today’s standards. I’ve played on good teams and bad, but I’ve never seen a successful team with nine second basemen. That’s the analogy I use when I see teams that lack diversity – specifically functional diversity.

10 Tips for Great Meetings (Part 1)

One of the Team Skills I mentioned in my last post was Effective Meetings. Does the idea of a great meeting sound like an oxymoron to you? Let’s face it; most of the meetings we attend are not the model for productivity and efficiency. However, if done well, meetings multiply our time, increase our productivity, tap into the collective wisdom and creativity of the group, yield better decisions and better results. Done poorly, they are a colossal waste of time. So what can a leader do?

Skill Players Needed

In some sports, the term “skill player” is used to identify players who have more complex roles… and earn more money. On my team at Chick-fil-A, I need every member to be a skill player. There are two types of skills I’m interested in. Let me explain.

What is the Secret of Teams?

I’ve been fascinated by teams most of my life. I guess it started when I was about 6 years old.  It was in the days before tee ball – I think it was just called baseball then. From that day until today, I’ve been on countless teams… some good, some really bad and a few great ones. I’ve been on sports teams of all kinds, church teams (or committees) and certainly scores of teams at work. One thing remains constant; the best teams seem to have figured something out that the others have missed. What is it?

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