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Change Conversations Dialogue Leadership Reflection

Old School

What do you do with milk that has expired? 

What do you do with clothes that are no longer in fashion? 

What do you do with beliefs that no longer fit in modern times?

Recently I heard the term ‘old school’ again from two different sources within two days.

It had been a while since I heard the term, so it triggered a reaction. … Read the rest

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Change Choices Courage Dreams Purpose

Your turn

It’s your turn.

This a common phrase when we play games with friends or family.

These words typically come out when we don’t pay attention and are somewhere else in our minds or are doing something else.

This time it’s about the game of life.

It’s your turn from the moment you’re born.… Read the rest

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Change Choices Leadership Mindset Vision

Causing pain

Sometimes you must create deliberate pain to get something you want to do in motion.

I remember vividly a conversation with my mentor Joyce who often talked about CEOs having to create organizational pain once in a while to shake things up.

When things are becoming complacent, and they often do, you need to create pain.… Read the rest

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Change Communication Kindness Leadership Purpose

The world deserves better leaders

The world deserves better leaders.

That’s why I do what I do.

I help leaders and teams grow and be the best they can be for themselves and the people they work with.

Doing what I do will help improve our collective human experience, one leader, one conversation at a time.

Ambitious.… Read the rest

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Change Choices Helping others Purpose Self awareness

Climbing down the ladder

The only way is up.

Until it’s not.

From the moment we’re born, our eyes are focused upwards unless we’re lying on our belly.

Our age goes up. Our length goes up. Our weight goes up. At school, grades our counting upward (in most countries).

With our first job, our income goes up.… Read the rest

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Change Communication Culture Leadership Self awareness

Fishy smell

“A fish stinks from the head.”

Rumi

Rumi, a Turkish poet who lived towards the end of the 13th century, wrote “The Third Book of Masnavi,” where the phrase appears as follows: “Fish begins to stink at the head, not the tail.”

We often hear this quote in a business environment.

I’m sure you’ve heard it before, and it basically means that when problems arise in a business, it makes sense to look at the top of the company first.… Read the rest

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Change Culture Transformation Values

Culture Transformation? Yeah right!

Most leaders have no clue about culture.

No clue. Nada. Nic (Czech). Nothing.

Oh yes, they talk about culture. They convey a belief that they actually don’t understand, but they don’t.

In fact,

Those leaders that talk most about culture probably understand the least.

It’s all talking but no action.

The leaders I know who are good at culture transformation do quietly what needs to get done.… Read the rest

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Change Getting better Learning Mindset Self awareness

I’m a piece of work. So are you.

I’m a piece of work.

People who know me well would agree — opinionated, not afraid to challenge, little patience with stupidity, occasionally moody.

But… I’m also honest, caring, helpful, generous, and a good listener.

Here’s the thing.

You’re also a piece of work. We all are.

We’re a piece of work from the moment we’re born.… Read the rest

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Change Choices Courage Freedom Purpose

Listen carefully! Don’t respond!

“Listen carefully!” 

“Just like in communism, I can only talk to you and give you commands and information. You can’t reply or talk back. The good old times.”

Berlin tour guide

I think it still works in many companies precisely that way (remember Elon Musk), which is another sad story in itself.… Read the rest

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Change Discipline Growth Mindset Performance

You’re not a tree

“If you don’t like how things are, change it. You are not a tree.”

Jim Rohn

I took a liking recently to the quotes from Jim Rohn. At the risk of offending someone, I had never heard of Jim until a few months ago.

Thanks to the algorithm of Instagram, one of his quotes showed up, which was enough reason to do a little more research.… Read the rest

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Change Culture Leadership Mindset

Let’s talk about work a little (more)

Or let’s debate about work a lot (less).

Wow. 

If you’re a curious person like I am and interested in the future of work, these are FANTASTIC times.

They’re so so so good that it’s worth adding them to my portfolio of services. I’m just unsure how to call the service and what the tagline would be.… Read the rest

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Change Culture Leadership Purpose

Motivation! How hard is it?

How do you motivate people?

I’m asking because I recently had a conversation about a hybrid work environment that turned into a conversation about motivation.

My opinion about a hybrid work environment is well documented, for example, in this post.

But if you dig a little deeper, we get to the topic of motivation. … Read the rest

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Asking Questions Change Coaching Dialogue Learning

Change starts with a conversation

I’m a certified facilitator in Fierce Conversations.

That’s not a joke.

If you thought it was, you’re probably wondering why something like training in conversations exists in the first place.

Well …

Because many of us do not know how to have a skillful conversation.

We don’t listen well.

We don’t articulate well.… Read the rest

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Change Learning Mindset Self awareness

Why change always comes from within

Steve Jobs ended his famous Stanford Commencement speech with this tip for the graduating students:

“Stay hungry. Stay foolish.”

Steve Jobs

My interpretation:

Always look for opportunities to make ‘things’ better, starting with yourself. Always be curious about yourself and the world around you.

Curiosity and change are the fun parts of being alive and growing as a human being and leader.… Read the rest

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Change Courage Growth Self awareness Trust

Vulnerability is a differentiator.

What’s your first reaction when you see this headline?

When I read this quote last week, my brain went into a pirouette that would have won gold at the most recent Olympic Games.

Meaning that for me there are different twists to this quote with both positive and negative implications.

While the author’s intentions were positive, it’s easy to point at the downsides of demonstrating vulnerability as well.… Read the rest

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Change Coaching Freedom Helping others Purpose

Why everyone wants to be a coach!?

Most of you, non-Dutch readers, have probably never heard of Arjen Lubach. He’s a Dutch comedian, although provocateur is probably a better word, with a daily show on Dutch TV.

In the past, he used to broadcast once a week, and with better quality in my opinion, but like most ambitious and successful program makers, more is more, and so we now can watch him daily.… Read the rest

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Change Freedom Reflection Vision

Musings from a little coffee place

We have a little coffee place in the next village over that we like to go to. It’s small, authentic, has excellent coffee, the best cakes, and started selling fresh bread last year as well.

There’s only one of it. It serves its unique purpose to people in the village and those who like to walk or bike in the forest nearby.… Read the rest

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Change Conflict Freedom Purpose

What the president of Ukraine is teaching us about purpose

Personally, I find it hard to write about general business and leadership topics while the world is up in arms.

I’m doing a pretty good job of remaining focused on what I need to be focused on, while it’s clear that many others are continuously following the news and the latest developments.… Read the rest

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Change Courage Dreams Fear

Life is not a to-do list

I started writing this insight when the world still seemed to be sort of normal.

I have a folder with topics and draft posts that I regularly update when I get inspired by an interesting topic.

After I write my first sentences down, I continue if the words flow immediately or pause if I want the topic to evolve a little.… Read the rest

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Change Curiosity Fear Habits Mindset

Seven practical tips for dealing with change

Too much change makes us uncomfortable. We have a natural tendency to resist when change happens to us.

If you thought things would calm down, now that Covid seems to be more or less under control, you were in for a surprise last week. The word war has actively entered our vocabulary again.… Read the rest