On Holding Back

The only person you are hurting when you hold back is yourself.

So why hold back?

Why not give it your all every day?

Why not treat every day like the day before vacation?

Why not take a stand and try something new that no one else is doing?

Instead of bringing your “okay” work to the table and letting someone else decide if it is “good enough” bring your best quality work so when you leave it doesn’t matter what anyone else decides?

The goal, as always, isn’t for you to compare yourself with everyone else, but to compare yourself with you and to go from there.

Oddly enough, that one person you are competing against is the same person that is most often holding you back – you.


The Sprint Kick-Off

Sprints are meant to roll-over from one to another, backlogs become unpacked, priorities reset, work assigned, new tasks created and the engine revs up for another lap around the track.

But what if you don’t know where you are going?

How often do you jump into a car having no idea what’s happening or where you are going?

Not very often.

How do you get your team on board with what is being delivered in the next sprint?

Sit them down at your next stand-up for 15 minutes and walk them through the goals and contingencies if things go well or sideways.  If they are behind, give them a kick, if they are ahead, let them know.

But don’t let the next sprint be a roll-over from the last, kick it into high-gear with everyone knowing what they are doing when they are doing it and what is expected of them.

When you don’t do this, the result is no one knowing where the sprint begins or ends (which isn’t the point at all).

Commitment vs Focus

Focus enables us to zero in on a task and force ourselves to work until we complete that singular task.

Commitment is the dedication that fuels our focus.

We might be focusing on a few tasks at any point in time, but if we are not committed to them, they will never get done.

We’ll look at them, stare at them, turn them around, and figure out which is the best way to attack them and then dive in.

In most cases, the problem isn’t in our commitment but what we have focused on, we picked the wrong thing and now we feel this unyielding urge to stick with it and see it through, never changing.

You have the commitment, but what you need to change is your focus.

Not a bad problem to have.



The Weakest Member on your Team

It’s going to happen.

One day, as you look through all the successes of your team, as you sit atop your plateau, you will start to wonder why you haven’t grown any further.

Everyone else will be happy with your success, but something will be nagging at you, something will be tugging at you asking that question that you know is always there.

Who is holding us back?

Who is the weakest member of our team?

It’s not an easy question to answer and conversely, no one wants to be asking it.

When people are asked this question, the initial follow-up is generally – “Do we keep them or let them go?”

Which is the wrong question every day of the week.

The question you want to be asking yourself is – “How do I get them from being the weakest to being the strongest?”

That’s a harder question to ask, that question takes much more time and requires much more time from you, their Leader, to figure it out.  It might require a slew of One-On-One discussions, reviews, checkpoints, etc, etc.

But the outcome will be that much better than asking a lazy yes or no question that only alleviates some short-term pain.

We Pose Too Much

In our photos.

On LinkedIn.

On Facebook.

On Instagram.


We take too much time to get the perfect shot, post or article when what everyone is really interested in seeing is how you got there.

How many outtakes did it take to create that LinkedIn video?

How many times did you try and take that photo before you got the perfect one?

How many times did you edit that last post before you posted?

That’s what everyone really wants to see, the work, the creativity, your method, the good, the bad and the ugly that came together in that one perfect moment.

We all know what the end result was, now we want to see how you made it happen when no one was watching.