Monthly Archives: August 2011

You Can’t Think With Your Tool Belt On® – 08/24/11

artwork toolbelt

Five ways to think about your value

 1. How does the way that your performance is measured, relate to the organization’s reason for being?

Poor: I worked harder this month than last.

Better: I enabled the company to sell more widgets or prevented mistakes that kept people from going to jail.

2. Are you part of an independent service, or is your service in support of something larger?

3. What other services is your success dependent on?

4. In completing your tasks, are you “hanging other people out to dry,” or do you consider their involvement?

5. Have you taken time to consider if there is more than one way to achieve the outcome, or are you married to your favorite method?

© Wayne McKinnon 2011. All rights reserved.

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What is your appetite for risk?

Horse shoe bay
Horse shoe bay

When we arrived in Bermuda we were presented with the option of renting a scooter to get around. Having just returned safely from a 4000km motorcycle tour of the Atlantic coast of North America, I just wasn’t willing to take the risk of driving a scooter on the wrong side of the road, however, the bigger risk was the beach where I almost stepped on a Portuguese man of war that had just washed up on shore.

It’s rarely the biggest perceived risks that cause problems, but more often the unforeseen risks that we haven’t bothered to consider. Equally dangerous are the risks that hold us back that are not real. 

The beach was fantastic and so was the motorcycle trip.



Posted in Moving to Work of Higher Value | Click Here to Share Your Thoughts

US Resilience


 I took this picture of the USS intrepid aircraft carrier as it seemed fitting this week amidst the chaos of the US credit rating fiasco. (The ship is just above the girl's head).

I use that word to describe what took place in the news as we set sail from New York Harbor on a cruise ship, looking back at the financial capital of the United States, and the glory of a once great aircraft carrier whose decks now contain a historical record of past "can do" attitude (as well as a period of comfort and complacency, as depicted by the concord in the foreground to the left where the concord aircraft sits).

Aboard our cruise ship one evening, the movie “Pearle Harbor” played.

What struck me was one particular scene where, in a room filled with negativity and pessimism about defeat, a crippled President Eisenhower rose from his wheel chair to tell his chiefs of staff, “don’t tell me what can’t be done!”

In my consulting work I often find organizations full of people who are more than happy to give you reasons why things cannot be done, but if you look back through history you will find more than enough evidence to support a "can do" approach.

Sometimes you need brute force, sometimes innovative ideas, and still other times you simply need a combined will to do what it takes to succeed.

Posted in Moving to Work of Higher Value | Click Here to Share Your Thoughts