The Blue Tape List

We remodeled the downstairs of the house several years ago. Two rooms had walls moved to make way for additional rooms. Deep construction. Months of noise, plastic tarps, dust, and decisions. When they start applying the drywall, it starts to look like your house again, and you begin to hope for dustless silence. Drywall is… More


You see James on the 8th-floor cafeteria. You haven’t seen him in weeks which is fine because while you’ve worked together for years, your paths are currently not intersecting. “Hey, James.” “Hey! Long-time, I was just thinking about you.” “Really, why?” “Randy just called you out in the launch meeting. He said the project was… More

Everything Breaks

We’re going to play a really simple and really dumb game. I’ll explain the setup and the rules: Two one-person ‘teams.’ On a flat, boring surface, you draw two parallel three feet long white lines which are fifty feet apart. Teams choose one home baseline. The other line marks the opposing team’s home base. Team… More

Say the Hard Thing

The majority of people-related disasters I’ve created originate with my choice to not say the hard thing. On my short list of critical leadership skills, the ability to “say the hard thing” is right after “delegate until it hurts.” I didn’t give feedback when behavior was off because the person was new and I told… More

A Performance Question

At some point in your leadership career, you’ll need to care about performance management. My first bit of advice is the hardest: don’t ever let yourself think or say the words “performance management.” This is impossible, but aspirational. I will explain. My hard earned definition of performance management: a well-defined workflow that either leads to… More

How to Rands

Hi, welcome to the team. I’m so glad you are here at $COMPANY. It’s going to take a solid quarter to figure this place out. I understand the importance of first impressions, and I know you want to get a check in the win column, but this is a complex place full of equally complex… More