May 2

BEST BOSS EVER! Newsletter MAY, ’24

(753 words = 5.8-minute read)

April Newsletter Recap

# 1 – What is perfectionism? – subjective… ranging from high standards to unattainable goals.

# 2 – It is both good & bad – ‘balancing’ means having high standards without experiencing too much stress.

# 3 – What can you do about it? – CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) is strongly suggested. Mindfulness also helps.

Leadership in today’s business landscape is a high-stakes game. It’s a constant juggling act of high performance, innovation, problem-solving, and decision-making, all while keeping your team motivated and engaged. In this issue, we tackle how to stay ahead of these demands without becoming overwhelmed.

Point # 1 – Why is leadership so challenging?

Leaders often get promoted because they get a lot done. They consistently accomplish the goals assigned to them. Often, the trap in this is that they are great doers. Today’s leaders must be able to get work done themselves without making that the only thing they do. Learning what to do and how much of it to do is critical every time you take on a new leadership role.

‘Doing more with less’ has been the mantra that almost all corporations profess as the key to success. Every year, management is expected to determine how to accomplish more with less expense (often fewer FTEs). This incredibly challenging task usually requires some innovation, adding another layer of complexity.

On top of ‘do more with less,’ you are also expected to solve product, service, or client issues. So, while your team tries to do more, they must also solve big problems. Net promoter scores must remain high, and you must implement better processes simultaneously.

In an employee-driven labor market—your best people are being recruited by other companies. Today, you also must be concerned about retention. A client told me they were counseling an employee to help them improve, and the employee was recruited away with a 40% raise.

Employees are experiencing more anxiety and depression than ever. Productivity can be negatively affected. Helping them through their personal challenges is also complex and challenging. Navigating how much to be involved is often unclear.

The last reason leadership is so challenging is that business has never been more intense. The intensity to deliver results “no matter what” is almost universal, and many leaders question whether it’s worth it.

Ask Yourself: “What factors are creating the leadership complexity I am facing?”


Point # 2 – Is there something leaders are missing?

Many leaders work harder to escape tough situations. This solution isn’t good in the long term and leads to burnout. Here are three common ‘misses’.

First, leaders are not focused on “learning” their way out of the problem.  Without consistent weekly leadership practices, they are not discovering solutions as quickly as possible. They don’t know what they are trying to improve and end up trying to work harder to get out of the problem.

Secondly, they don’t seek meaningful feedback. Throwaway questions like: ‘What can I do for you?’ or ‘How can I be better?’ don’t work. A better approach is to focus on a specific leadership skill or competency, ask for a rating, and, over time, ask if progress has been made.

Finally, leaders are not utilizing the “big three” as much as possible: 1. enroll people into an ultra-clear vision, 2. ensure everyone has a prioritized workload and is 100% accountable, and 3. Inspire & motivate them to accomplish stretch goals.

Ask Yourself: How can I make more progress in my leadership improvement?

Point # 3 – What can you do?

Commit yourself to being a ‘Corporate Olympian’; manage yourself and your energy renewal habits to have the highest level of physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual energy possible. Without incredible energy, you cannot take on the demands of leadership today. An abundant daily energy supply is critical because you give it away all day.

Get a 360-degree assessment to determine the most leverageable competency you can work on to become a fantastic (BEST BOSS EVER) leader. You need feedback, and the best way to create an outstanding development plan is to anchor it with the input from those you lead.

Identify your core leadership beliefs. Your core beliefs or “schemas” unconsciously guide you, and if you don’t know what they are or how strongly you believe in them, they will sub-optimize your ability to lead. So many of us face judgment issues. Your perfectionism and judgment of yourself and others will minimize how good of a leader you can become.

Ask Yourself: What can I do to be a better leader?


Want to help a new leader? Send me their name. I will help them get feedback and create an improvement plan.


Want to Go Deeper?

  1. How Leaders Can Balance the Needs to Perform and to Transform by Bill Taylor, HBR
  2. Are You Leading With Your Best Energy? Human Performance Institute Free Assessment
  3. The Definitive 360 Degree Leadership Assessment – Zenger Folkman

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