7 Habits of Highly Effective Change Leaders


I found a great list of habits from Sandrine Provoost on LinkedIn which she states are shared by effective change leaders. As a change leader, myself, I can commiserate with a lot of these and wanted to pass along the set.

My favorite: Pour Champagne On It – this is so true. We are largely horrible at celebrating success because we’re all too damned concerned about moving on to the next thing. We always say we’ll do it, we’ll always get better at celebrating success. But at the end of the day – we never do. We never carve out time to kick back and relax. Shame on us for that. Shame on our executives for not forcing us to do it. This is one thing we SHOULD change. Immediately.

My least favorite: Practice Makes Perfect – this one hits a sore spot with me. I have an application that just migrated to Agile, and I know I should be embracing this concept much more. But the sheer horror of launching things with clear defects so that you can simply “learn from your mistakes” is too much for me to bear. Every time you put something out there that isn’t fully baked, your’e begging for those impacted by the change to shut down. And I’m in the position where I have to send out the “JK – LOL – This feature doesn’t really work!” emails. That whole getting shot because your’e the messenger thing is never fun… I do keep promising myself to let go a bit more though…

Til Next Time,


Travel Bloggers’ Hidden Gems

I know, I know… My blog has migrated nearly fully, now, to an ancillary travel blog under the guise of this otherwise great place where I will share all of my wisdom on who/what/when/where/how you can succeed in Corporate America. Sorry for that. I will get back to some real world opinions at some point. For now, though, it’s summer time. And I have the itch to travel.

Hence landing on this article the other day, and thinking I should share with you all… What are some of your hidden gems? I am a huge fan of the couple spots on the Yucatan that several bloggers shared here…

Til Next Time,


Travel Elites


I was pointed to a recent article the other day on the growing challenge of structuring elite programs for travel’s most loyal participants. The road warriors, the regional sales guys, the implementers of all things people, process, technology who can often spend day after day in some regional mecca the likes of Columbus (any of them really – not just Ohio) just to see themselves wake up in another. I found the article to be very accurate in describing the ways and the reasons that many of these companies (airlines especially) are migrating their program travel requirements to even higher heights, effectively creating a whole new level of travel “elites”. I liken them to “second world citizens” if you consider the true elites to be “first” and people with no affiliation/loyalty/recognition with the company to be “third”.

Candidly, I myself am currently Silver on Delta, trending towards Gold this year. Which brings up an interesting dilemma. How much is it worth to me and how differently may I be treated next year if I chase the next level of loyalty? I am of the opinion that, if you are traveling with any frequency (even once or twice a month) – the incremental amount you can (often creatively/cheaply) spend to get to a next tier is definitely worth it.

But we shall see; I’ll keep you posted!

Til Next Time,


Show Me, Don’t Tell Me: Visuals in Marketing


I’ve been talking with my team a lot lately about the need to “show me, don’t tell me”. Perhaps this is part of my Missouri roots (for those of you who didn’t catch the tie-in, Missouri is the “Show Me State”). But perhaps it’s just because I’ve recognized a sharp shift in the millennial/digital age’s preference of ways they learn about things. They like to see things visually, and have them reinforced with real words, rather than read some black-and-white text in a non-digital outlet.

Along these lines, I received a stock email the other day from Add This, which went over some great basic tips on ways to improve and use visual components in marketing. For the sake of my argument, I’ll let “marketing” mean anything from implementation to branding to traditional project management. I think it’s a great list and I definitely pull elements from each of these and try to reinforce and innovate my team to drive better visuals.

Here are the tips, courtesy of AddThis:

1. Use Online Tools to Help You Create Images: If you don’t have your own staff designer to help you create visuals, and you’re on a budget, you should check out online tools like Piktochart, Canva, and PowToon. They’re easy to use and are very effective at creating professional images and animations.

2. Create Charts and Infographics: One of the best ways to provide shorter form content is by creating charts, infographics, video or other visual content to accompany your text. The content becomes more easily digestible with the aid of visual treats. In addition to the resources listed above, Infogr.am is another great tool for creating infographics and charts.

3. Include Quotes/Facts in Images: Visually previewing what you’re promoting is a strategy we’ve found effective in our social media marketing. Tweets that include specific statistics or quotes tend to perform better than those without. Recite is an online tool that makes this easy. They offer a variety of templates to which you can add quotes. Buffer’s Pablo app is another easy way to do this with lots of customization options for your image and copy.

4. Use Higher Quality Photography: Marketers are trading in traditional stock photography for more authentic looking images. Here are some great high resolution free photography resources you can use for your everyday marketing needs.

5. Don’t Underestimate Video: Including video in landing pages is another great way to drive engagement. Facebook reports the amount of video posted by users (both individuals and brands) increased by 3.6X from January 2013 to November 2014. Sandwich Video is a great example of a company that does very creative videos for businesses. In addition to the free photo resources listed above, we also have video resources you can check out.

Til Next Time,


Transparency with Organizational Design

I think one thing people often struggle with in Corporate America is balancing the need for transparency with the need for keeping certain things outside of the public (and internal public, i.e. front line worker bees) domain. I error on the side of more transparency – and perhaps that’s one of my flaws. But I have found in my career that this is a great way to build trust and make yourself honorable to those with whom you work on a daily basis.

Anyways, I am really impressed with how the new Cisco CEO has approached this. Cheers to you, Chuck Robbins. Take a look:


Til Next Time,


Blogroll: Supercompressor

Screen Shot 2015-06-02 at 1.02.44 PM

So I know I’ve migrated the site (just slightly) from doing only Corporate America opine to a bit more of an amalgamation of things I enjoy… which – in some (many) cases – corresponds to Corporate America. Sorry for that!

Either way though, I want to start giving credit to some new (as well as tried and true) favorite blogs of mine. A blogroll and “credits” section of sorts.

Today – I give you Supercompressor – a gear/tech/machine/home good blog courtesy of one of my good buddies. Enjoy!

Til Next Time,