Arnold Palmer

Arnold Palmer. I remember the first time I saw him play. In the 1977 Houston Open I was following my hero. In a crowd of hundreds of people, I would have sworn he made eye contact with me on every hole. He had that kind of charisma.

Sometime today mix up an “Arnold Palmer” and toast a man who knew how to win with class. Cheers!TwoRuleOfLeadership

Hate Mondays? Some tips on beating the blues…

Become a Monday lover. Yep, you. “If you’re an energetic and ready-to-go Monday person,” David Cottrell said, “the people around you will become one, too.”

This is just one of the tips you can find in Gail Rosenblum’s recent article in the Star Tribune regarding Monday Morning Blues. I enjoyed the interview and wanted to share the full article with you:

http://www.startribune.com/rosenblum-hate-mondays-some-tips-on-beating-the-blues/392810431/

Achieve Extraordinary Leadership Results with Class

Leadership is demanding. If you want to lead a great team, you have to be great. If you want great, long-term leadership success you have to win with great class.

The good news is that the rewards for being a great, rather than average, leader are heavily skewed. People want to work for the best, buy from the best, and deal with the best in almost every situation in our society. The rewards for being a great leader are enormous. People flock to winners.

What you do with your life will be your legacy. No one requires you to win with class. It is something you do to help someone along the way, to support your colleagues, your friends, and those whom you may not know. It is a gift that comes without a price tag. Your legacy is priceless.

In some cases, you may never know how much you impact the success of others.
Not too long ago, while touring Boston, I passed a cemetery where Ephraim Wales Bull was buried. I had never heard of Ephraim Wales Bull, but the tour guide said he was the person who created Concord grapes. However, he never profited from the grapes because he died before they were marketed in jellies and jams.

The reason I share the story of Ephraim Wales Bull is because the epitaph on his gravestone reads, “He Sowed, Others Reaped.” I think that should be our mission as leaders—to keep sowing and allow others to reap. That is what leadership is all about.

If you want to achieve extraordinary results with class, read and apply The First Two Rules of Leadership: Don’t be Stupid. Don’t Be a Jerk.  It will help improve morale, decrease turnover, increase everyone’s job satisfaction, and you will have a whole lot more fun leading.

Subscribe to David’s blog here: https://davidcottrellblog.wordpress.com/

Don’t be a Jerk. Win with Class

The joy of leadership is in the gift of knowledge that you give, not in what you receive in return. The purpose of giving is not to receive back in full measure. If you give solely with the expectation of receiving something in return, you are really not giving—you’re swapping. If you receive something in return of your gift, what you receive is a bonus—not a repayment of debt.

There are people surrounding you today who could use your experience, advice, and counsel. Just look around . . . people are desperate for help and do not know where to go or who to turn to. You have the experience to make a profound difference in their life just by sharing your knowledge.

The average person has great intentions of making a difference. Intentions do not accomplish anything. The people who find success make the conscious decision to step out and make a difference. I hope you will make that decision.

If you want to achieve extraordinary results with class, read and apply The First Two Rules of Leadership: Don’t be Stupid. Don’t Be a Jerk.  It will help improve morale, decrease turnover, increase everyone’s job satisfaction, and you will have a whole lot more fun leading.

Subscribe to David’s blog here: https://davidcottrellblog.wordpress.com/

Don’t Be a Jerk. Lead with Confidence

“Something can be done and there is something I can do.”  —  Unknown

Your attitude toward life is the most important choice you make.  It will reflect your past, describe your present and predict your future. The great news is that your attitude is something you can always control.   You are the conductor of your attitude – no one else can compose your thoughts for you.

Successful leaders choose not to inflict the poison of negative attitudes on themselves. People who are positive and confident attract others like a magnet. They add energy to those around them, whereas negative and cynical people zap that same energy, draining the room of confidence.

Your attitude is powerful.  It can convince or discourage others who are watching you.  A positive attitude can mean the difference between a survivor and a victim because it impacts every part of your life.  It is the linchpin for successes and failures.

I cannot name one successful person who I would describe as negative and cynical. Not one. Can you? Do you think it is coincidental? I don’t think so. Optimism and confidence are two traits that you will find in great leaders, regardless of industry, profession, or age.

A confident, enthusiastic attitude is more important to your success than how you dress, how you look, how much skill you have, how much education you’ve accumulated, and how gifted you think you are. The good news is that you have an opportunity to choose the attitude you have for each situation every day.

If you want to achieve extraordinary results with class, read and apply The First Two Rules of Leadership: Don’t be Stupid. Don’t Be a Jerk.  It will help improve morale, decrease turnover, increase everyone’s job satisfaction, and you will have a whole lot more fun leading.

Subscribe to David’s blog here: https://davidcottrellblog.wordpress.com/

Don’t Be a Jerk. Attack Complacency

“Hey, we are doing pretty good. Why would we want to make any changes?”

“Don’t you think we could do a little better?”
  —  Employee questioning his leader

Many people would rather do anything than change . . . even when things may not be going well.

Do you remember reading a book in high school titled The Road Less Traveled? Three words were on the first page of the book: “Life is difficult.” The reason the road was less traveled was because it was difficult. People would pass it by looking for the road without difficulties—Easy Street. Responding to change is like going down the road less traveled. It’s not Easy Street but it gets you where you need to be.

Mediocrity is success’s worst enemy—a greater enemy than failure. If viewed with the right perspective, failure leads to success because it forces you to move in another direction. Mediocrity, on the other hand, hinders success because it keeps you in your comfort zone and prevents your team from moving forward. Nothing big is won in the comfort zone. The risk is small, but so is the reward.

Learning and growth happen when you are uncomfortable. Think of your most defining moments in your life. Were you hanging out in your comfort zone? Probably not—I bet you were hanging over the edge.

If you feel your team settling into a comfortable routine, ask yourself, “Are we getting complacent? Are we too comfortable?” When you are complacent, you have to let go to grow. You have to be willing to purposely seek learning opportunities at the edge of your comfort zone. It’s not natural to choose to be a little uncomfortable, but the best leaders do it anyway.

Don’t be a jerk.  Attack complacency.

If you want to achieve extraordinary results with class, read and apply The First Two Rules of Leadership: Don’t be Stupid. Don’t Be a Jerk.  It will help improve morale, decrease turnover, increase everyone’s job satisfaction, and you will have a whole lot more fun leading.

Subscribe to David’s blog here: https://davidcottrellblog.wordpress.com/

Don’t Be a Jerk. Encourage

“My manager never returns my calls. She only calls me when it fits her agenda. That drives me crazy.”

“I don’t think she really cares.”  
—  Conversation overheard at airport terminal

Oftentimes leaders get so focused on the “big things” that they forget to take care of the basics, like showing the people on their team that their leader actually cares about them. As the poet Robert W. Service said, “It isn’t the mountain ahead that wears you out; it’s the grain of sand in your shoe.” Many times the “grain of sand” that keeps someone disengaged at work is lack of attention and encouragement from their leader.

William James, recognized as the father of American psychology, stated that the most fundamental psychological need is to be appreciated.. Everyone has the need to be appreciated. The unspoken question from your team is: do you care about them as a person—as more than just another cog in the company wheel?

When people are in the midst of uncertainty, are overworked, feel they are carrying a disproportionate share of the load, or believe they are being mistreated, they immediately assume you do not care. That isn’t fair, but that’s just the way it is.

The main reason that great people leave good organizations is simply because their need for respect and appreciation is not being met. Their perception is that they work hard and do the right things, yet nobody pays attention. People leave people long before they leave organizations. They give up hope that their leader will ever meet their needs. They conclude that a leader they know nothing about will be better than the one they know.

One of your top priorities as a leader is to be available for your team. If you are always busy in “management land,” you send the signal that everything else is more important than your team. That is a bad signal to send to the people you need to perform in order for you to be successful.

Everyone needs to know that they are okay.  Don’t be a jerk and leave them guessing if they are okay or not.  Encourage.

If you want to achieve extraordinary results with class, read and apply The First Two Rules of Leadership: Don’t be Stupid. Don’t Be a Jerk.  It will help improve morale, decrease turnover, increase everyone’s job satisfaction, and you will have a whole lot more fun leading.

Subscribe to David’s blog here: https://davidcottrellblog.wordpress.com/