“He Just Thought It Up And Did It”

You don’t need permission to succeed. You don’t need someone to say you’re worthy. You just need to grab hold of your idea, wrestle it into submission, and then go out there and do it.

thinkitup

It’s the doing it part that gets people hung up. Most of the time, it’s easier to talk about the project you’re “working on” than it is to actually do the work.

My friend Jeff asked me recently why I went through the hassle of hosting a seminar of my own. I’ve been thinking about that question.

I have lots of great-sounding reasons, but the truth is… it just seemed like a good idea, and I wanted to do it.

In the movie Apocalypse Now, the film’s narrator explains the extraordinary success of the iconic Colonel Kurtz this way: “He received no official clearance. He just thought it up and did it.”

If you feel that you do need permission, here it is (along with instructions): whatever it is that’s burning inside of you, go ahead, think it up and do it.

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Going the Extra Mile

This is a guest post by Rob Fischer. I first met Rob when he was the executive pastor of the church I attended. We have since become friends and spiritual partners. Rob is now a Certified Leadership Coach, the author of many fine books, and a freelance writer whose work I recommend highly. Rob offers free resources at the Fischer Leadership Coaching Website.
-Ray Edwards

We often employ the phrase, “Going the extra mile,” to indicate stellar customer service. Do you know where that phrase originated?

The Extra Mile Just Ahead Green Road Sign Over Dramatic Clouds and Sky.

In the first century, Roman occupation forces controlled Israel. At the time, it was common for a Roman soldier to force a resident into temporary service and carry the soldier’s gear for a distance. The locals were neither keen on the fact that a foreign nation occupied their land, nor that soldiers of this occupation force made such demands on them.

How The National Speakers Association Can Recover From A Major Mistake

Recently the National Speakers Association made a major mistake when they rebranded their conference as “Platform.”

NSA's branding (L) and Hyatt's (R)

NSA’s branding (L) and Hyatt’s (R)

The colors they chose, the elements of the design, and they way they are used seem nearly identical to author Michael Hyatt‘s previously established brand. A few years ago, Hyatt published a book called “Platform: Get Noticed In a Noisy World”. Hyatt also has a conference called “Platform” and a membership website called “Platform University”. What do we make of all this? Well…

How To Make Your Employees Do What You Want

Do it yourself first. Allow me to tell you a brief story that will explain how this works.

wkrp

When I moved to Spokane Washington in 1996, I went to work for a man named Steve Cody.

Cody ran the group of radio stations that I myself would one day be charged with overseeing, but at that time he hired me as the program director of the group’s country station.

Within a few days of my arrival, our station hosted a live on-site broadcast. When I showed up, Cody was already there, helping set up the radio station’s tent and hang the banner.

I just stood and stared for a moment, as I’ve never seen a radio station General Manager dirty his hands with something so mundane as putting up a tent or hanging a station banner at a sponsor’s remote broadcast.

Over the next couple of weeks, I noticed that Cody was always the first person to show up at the office and the last person to leave. I talked to people who worked with him for a long time, and learned there was a general respect for him I had never encountered before.

One of the younger staff members said to me at lunch one day, “The thing about Steve Cody is, he will never ask you to do something he’s not willing to do himself. So I will do anything asks me to do.”

In all the years that Steve and I worked together, I never heard him give a staff talk about motivation, commitment, loyalty, or work ethic. He just lived out those values, and people following him.

The message you are preaching is not nearly as persuasive as the message you are living.

The Four Extreme Tests of Leadership

This is a guest post by Rob Fischer. Rob is a Certified Leadership Coach, the author of many fine books, and a freelance writer whose work I recommend highly. Rob offers free resources at the Fischer Leadership Coaching Website.
-Ray Edwards

Heat and pressure are two of the primary forces required to refine metal. These forces draw out the impurities of the metal. Leaders require refining too. But the heat and pressure that God uses in our lives to refine us as leaders are of a different sort than that required to refine metal.

crucible

A crucible is a pot in which molten metal is refined. Metaphorically, a crucible is an extreme test that God uses to refine us.

Is It Selfish to Set Boundaries?

As a follower of Jesus, I find that it sometimes feels awkward to set boundaries in my life.

goodfences

As you can imagine, because of this blog and my podcast I get lots of requests from people for “just five minutes” of my time… to have coffee… to be interviewed… or even to work on a project pro bono, because it’s “for the Lord”.

I’ve Seen It Before

It’s a mistake I see quite often. A person assumes that because they’ve already read a book, already been trained in a particular area, have a diploma or degree in a subject, they’ve “seen this before.”

boredclass

I’ve experienced it myself. I’ve gone to a conference, for instance, and listened to a talk about goals, and thought to myself, “I’ve heard all this before.”

Your Personal Declaration of Independence

In case you didn’t know, today is Independence Day in the United States.July 4th is the day we commemorate the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

By signing that document, our Founding Fathers threw off the yoke of bondage and declared our freedom as a nation.

The declaration was bold. Brave.

And it required  commitment to back it up. Signing the document meant you were literally betting your life on the success of this new nation… And you were willing to back up that commitment with your own blood.