Find Your Calling and Your Purpose (1)

Man waiting for a call.  Image shows a man waiting for his calling or purpose to call him on the phone.
Calling and Purpose

God, please tell me what to do!

God speaks to a lot of people in the Bible.  Even some people today, you can talk to them and they are sure that God has called them down a path.  He does not speak to me in any sort of obvious way, and waiting by the phone for him to call and tell me what my purpose is, doesn’t seem to work.  My wife and I were talking today about how communications isn’t just about email, and while God hasn’t adopted that either, he has left us plenty of instruction. He has left us his word, and he has created us uniquely to have a purpose.

Over the past couple of years, I have worked through a transition in my life, from a Defense Contractor to an Executive Coach and Management Consultant.  I made this transition partly of my own volition, but also to pursue an opportunity to minister to people in the marketplace. 

As a defense contractor, I was doing work I was passionate about, was interested in, and that I thought useful and cutting edge for the Navy.  Other people had other priorities, and I was out of contract dollars to keep my technology growing.  What I realized quickly is that I am not a software developer.  That is not my experience nor my gift.  I have written some R and python scripts, but I am not efficient or effective. It is a daunting thing to be dependent on others to bring your vision to life, without having money to pay them to do it.  Rather than go after investors, I chose the consulting route and pursued the opportunity to be a Chapter President for @Truth at Work in San Diego.  My goal was to use my leadership and management education, training, and experience to create a successful consulting practice to serve others.  Along the way, I could also support business leaders who are lonely, isolated, and overwhelmed, by getting them into community with other believers.  Then COVID came and put a halt to everything.  So I began to ask myself, is this just my great idea, or am I really pursuing my calling?

In the Executive Coaching world, continuous education is a real thing.  If you plan to help others to continue to get better, then you need to continue to better yourself.  So I went back to school, got a certificate from the Townsend Institute at Concordia University Irvine.  Then I started getting into other groups and started reading and rereading a lot of books (including the Bible!).  Another thing that I did, was to become a client of the process, and hired my own coach, who has also helped me to prioritize what is important, to listen to subtle and not so subtle clues, and to try to figure out what God is really calling me to do. 

I believe it was Larry Buxton who explained to me that the word Enthusiam is actually derived from words meaning “God within”.  I found this tidbit at the Merriam Webster Dictionary:

What is the history of enthusiasm?

… Enthusiasm entered the English language around the beginning of the 17th century. It was borrowed from the Greek enthousiasmos, meaning “inspiration or possession by a god.” For the first two hundred or so years that it was used in English, enthusiasm was primarily employed to refer to beliefs or passions that related to religion…

So what if God is the source of our enthusiasms? If so, then things that we are enthusiastic about, are things that deserve attention.   What things are you enthusiastic about?  What things bring you joy?  What do you get lost doing?  At this point it doesn’t really matter if it makes you money, unless money making or spending money is your calling. Usually the money comes as a byproduct of pursuing your calling or passion, but that’s not to say that you may also need to make money to be able to pursue your passion. At any rate, list down those things which you are passionate about.

If you are feeling stuck or wanting to talk about a transition in your life, please schedule a time to talk and see if we can help you to Activate Your Passion! You just may find it helps to Optimize Your Performance!




I am the type of person who has to get a thought out of my head and into a conversation before I lose it, because I think I am so smart and witty. My contributions to the conversation are critical and must be heard, or at least from my perspective. 

When I was living with my fiancé in Hawaii late last millennium, we used to go out to The Shack in Kailua for trivia night with a few other couples. My then fiancé (now wife) would get so mad at me, because I would talk over other people and not even bother or consider what they had to say. My own arrogance and self-importance trumped whatever contribution someone else might have had to say.

It didn’t start there, though. If I go back a bit earlier to my Naval Academy days, I studied a book for the Navy called “Seven Habits of Highly Effective People in Naval Leadership.” I did not take too much away from this book at the time, but since I was almost 21, I thought I had it all figured out. The thing is, though, I didn’t. 

Habit 5 is “Seek First to Understand, Then to Be Understood.” Based on my behavior later in life, it is apparent that I did not take this habit to heart because I think being respectful, kind, and having empathy for people is really what this is about.

Active Listening vs. Passive Listening in Business

When it comes to active listening, we are present, listening to understand rather than trying to get the next word in, and trying to see the viewpoint of the speaker. But if we’re listening in a passive way, we’re not truly present and only listening so share our own opinion.

In my coaching certificate program, we practiced the skill of active listening while understanding their feelings and the technical term is called “attunement.” It’s essential to try and put yourself into someone else’s shoes and experience their perspective and feelings for the situation they’re currently experiencing.  

Now, as an executive coach and consultant, it’s critical for me to listen to what people have to say, what they are feeling and try to understand what their needs and perspectives are. I was facilitating a “Vision Day” the other day for a client, and one of the values that we discussed was customer awareness. The client wanted to have a close relationship with customers, and have a deep understanding of their needs, where they are trying to go, to better provide solutions to these problems ahead of the competition.

But in my opinion, it even goes beyond that. I think for business development, we need to have the ability to listen to what potential customers are saying, ask clarifying questions, and provide intellectual capital that can help lead to solutions. Doing this goes a long way in building trust, a strong relationship, and possibly even a contract or business deal. 

Build Relationships First 

It’s hard to not be trying to build your business and sell a product or service to someone who you think needs it. But at the end of the day, I also don’t believe most people want to be “sold.” They may not even want to work with you, but if we can serve people, the right relationships will follow. 

When serving others, we need to listen to them. We need to listen with emphasis, and we need to listen with empathy. At the end of the day, we need to take time to listen at a deeper level than just listening to respond. 

Tackship Consulting

As an executive coach, I have the necessary training to help you and your company become better equipped to actively listen and build relationships with possible customers. If you’re ready to Activate your Passion and Optimize your Performance, fill out our contact form today! 

Focus: Urgency VS Importance


What is Focus?

Focus is when you concentrate or put your attention on something. In today’s world, there are many things competing for our focus.  Work, kids, notifications, social media, games, parents, pets, etc. Many of these things are necessary, and some are distractions.  What sorts of things grab your attention?   What are some strategies that you employ to keep your focus on things that are important and minimize distractions? 

Day and age of distractions

As humans, especially in a day and age of technology, we often can get distracted by non-essential things. My daughter has her focus on one thing and one thing only: her iPad. Unfortunately, there are many other things that I would rather she focus on, so we have a saying: “Do what needs to be done before you do what wants to be done.”  Brush your teeth, get dressed, eat breakfast, go to school, play the piano, do your homework, attend practice, and eat dinner and then you can play on your iPad.

Admittedly, I sometimes have to do the same. When I get distracted by apps on my own phone, calls, emails, texts, or even a thought in my head that makes me want to research things, like why can kids not focus, when I should be searching for why can’t humans focus?

It reminds me of the movie, “The Social Dilemma.” The film reveals that most of the games and social media we know so well have been invented in the past 10-20 years and actually incorporate things that help us focus on them, based on some behavioral psychology courses taught at Stanford.

Maybe we could harness this idea to help us focus on what needs to get done in our daily life, as opposed to how many aliens we can kill, blocks we can destroy, gems we can link, or likes on our blogs and posts, or pictures we post. I believe this proves that the ability to focus is limited. What do we do about that? I found this video the other day and used it to talk about rocks for a company the other day.

Focus and the rock analogy  

Essentially, rocks are Imperatives. Now, let’s apply this analogy if you’re a business owner. Rocks are the essential things in your life and things that need to get done to help your business grow. Next is the gravel. Gravel is the things that are less essential and are tasks that need to be executed for your business to run because your company needs to be making money to pay the bills. Finally, there is the sand, which represents hassles, interruptions, and other things that take up your time while creating friction and may even keep you from getting the important (rocks) things done in your day-to-day.

Important vs. Urgency 

Another way of looking at this would be to graph the things you do in your day, week, and month and figure out which of the boxes below you spend most of your time in?  

If I can spend most of my time in the green box, then I am likely not getting too many things in my red box. If I spend most of my time in the black box, I probably have a lot to do in the red and blue boxes.

Remember, the rocks are the essential things in your life and business. When you focus on working on the important things with a plan for decomposing larger goals into smaller tasks to complete work, this can help you minimize the red. That to me is something I call focus.

In our last blog, we talked about vision and visionaries.  One of the best ways to create a vision is to figure out what you want your future state to look like, then create a focused plan to make it happen.

With the plan, you need to focus your effort on executing it as opposed to making decisions that pull you away from your plan.

In EOS, (Traction), how you should review and reset your plan every 90 days because human beings tend to start to drift by this point. In addition, the utility of frequent meetings (weekly) keeps people accountable and focused on getting important stuff done.

But the Distractions…

In the video, you notice the things that keep filling up the time, are smaller than rocks, the gravel, and the sand.  Maybe it’s the liquid mud that are the distractions that we spend too much time with and return almost no value to us.  The social media, the video games, etc.  It’s not that these things are not enjoyable or valuable to keep abreast of, but the concept of putting first things first and focusing on what needs to be done vs. what wants to be done is also important.  Just like my daughter’s iPad, look at these things as extra rewards for completing the “rock” tasks that you need to get done.  

Another idea is to silence your notifications on your computer and your phone.  This can help keep your focus on the task at hand and not be pulled into other things that are not as critical.  I have one friend who removed all apps from her phone that distracted her and left all her social media and games on her tablet, which she could then decide when she wanted to use those things, but would switch devices.  There is also a new phone, the Light Phone, which comes, pre-unloaded.  Free of distracting apps, and with no way to add any to it.  

Tackship Consulting Can Help

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting. If this is something that you would like to work on within your company, please set up a time to meet with me here.

Visionary In The Workplace


What is a Visionary?

In the EOS world, there is a concept called “the Visionary,” which is someone within your business with big ideas who can see potential opportunities and manage strategic relationships.

The visionary is not the person who holds other people accountable and is not the leader, decider, or the person in charge of conflict resolution. Instead, this individual is the keeper of the vision for where the company is going and communicates it to the organization. Often they are the entrepreneur who started the company in the first place.

Interestingly enough, only approximately 50% of companies have someone filing a visionary role. But now, that begs the question: how do you create a vision if you do not have a Visionary? How do you create a personal vision if you are not a visionary person? The simple answer is you can, but it takes a lot of discipline and work and may suck the energy out of the people involved, because they may be more energized in accomplishing the execution of the plan or the company. If you want to build your company purposefully, you need someone who is a visionary. 

And if you are a visionary, ensuring that you are delegating the actual running of your company to an “Integrator” role is essential. Integrators are good at execution, good at holding people accountable, and good at resolving issues. 

Everyone needs a Vision

As I have been working with companies and individuals, there is a consistent topic throughout all my clients that we spend a lot of time discussing, and that is vision. It is essential for people to have a vision of where they want to go, both professionally, personally, and even corporately for a company.

Vision begets a purpose for why you or your company exists. It sets a larger objective or goal and can help you know if you are on the right path. If your vision gets created, it makes your decision-making almost evident, as that is where you want to get to, like putting it into your map app or GPS. Even if you make a wrong decision that might distract you from your vision/purpose, the ways to get back on course tend to be evident. 

EOS Worldwide resource

I think the book Traction by Gino Wickman is a helpful resource. It is the foundation of EOS, and provides a good framework for companies looking to figure out how to simplify, delegate, predict, systemize, and structure their organizations. Part of this is going through the exercises to cast a vision, which can be done with the leadership team and a facilitator to help tease it out.

EOS is the desire to get the leadership working ON the company instead of working IN the company. I know that when there are so many deadlines and things to work on, it can be hard to pull out of the day-to-day tasks to actually take the time to look around and see where you are.  Scheduling time to be strategic, whether you are a visionary or not, it is essential.

EOS Worldwide has also recently implemented EOS1 as an online software tool and can help execute EOS within your company. I am still playing with this software, which is free in beta right now, but will cost from $5-$12 a seat/month, depending on the size of the business. If you are interested in learning more about a facilitated implementation, please reach out, and let’s discuss.  

Visionary resource 

Another resource is a book called Vision Driven Leader by Michael Hyatt. Hyatt found himself at the head of the worst-performing publishing division in a publishing house. He took a weekend to create a vision plan for what he wanted to see out of his division and then set the intermediate goals to achieve the vision. The company was so impressed that they decided to do it for all the divisions and the company.

Activate your passion & optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting

Sometimes talking to someone about your ideas, your gut, and looking at where you are at can help you break through to a different level. In our next blog, we will discuss the focus and how maybe doing less can make you more effective. Tackship Consulting is here to help! Schedule a free consultation today. 

Developing A Healthy Mindset


What Is Mindset?

According to Verywell Mind, “mindset” is “a set of beliefs that shape how you make sense of the world and yourself. It influences how you think, feel, and behave in any given situation.” 

What this means is that the way you see things, and how you think or behave can influence your perspective on not only yourself but also the world around you.

The Importance of Your Mindset

Your mindset is essential when it comes to how you deal with the things, people, events, and ideas that shape your life. If you see things in black and white, or as good or bad, then you’ll get into a habit of seeing and reacting with that perspective. 

The same is true with the people that you surround yourself with because if you start out with a positive attitude and a positive mindset, but then surround yourself with people who only see the negative, their negativity will start to impact you. Surrounding yourself with people that will support you will help reflect the type of person you want to be (or become). 

How To Develop A Healthy Mindset

When it comes to developing a healthy mindset, it’s important to look at the two common ways that people often view situations, in both their personal and professional life. Those two ways of thinking are called “growth” or “fixed” mindset. To get a better sense between the two, let me share a table that showcases the differences.

Growth MindsetFixed Mindset
You can develop your intelligence throughout your lifeYou can’t grow your intelligence; it’s fixed
Always willing to try something new and to challenge yourselfDon’t want to chance failure, so you avoid challenges
Effort and continuous practice can help you master somethingYour skills are intact so practice isn’t essential
Failure is only temporary; use it as an opportunity to learn and growTemporary setbacks are seen as permanent failures
Seeing other people succeed is a form of inspiration to continue to work hard and achieve your goalsSeeing someone else succeed can lead to jealousy
Feedback allows you to grow, learn, and do better next timeFeedback is an attack on you personally, and you choose to ignore the recommendations

What this table makes clear is that someone with a growth mindset isn’t afraid of failure; they accept it as an opportunity to learn, and evolve, so that they can reach their goals. Someone with a fixed mindset wants to hide their mistakes and imperfections so that they don’t feel ashamed of their failure– in a sense, they want to seen as having their act together and looking “perfect” on the outside.

As humans, we need to continue to learn, expand our horizons, and so a growth mindset is important. Now, we aren’t saying that if you have a fixed mindset that there is something wrong with you because there isn’t. What we mean is that to help continue to become the best versions of ourselves, we have to be willing to step outside of our comfort zone to grow.

We are here to help

As an executive coach, I’ve been trained and certified to help clients explore their goals, work on creating a better mindset, and how to implement these steps into their everyday life. 

If you’re interested in how you can activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting click here to schedule a FREE consultation. 



Work together as ONE

There’s a phrase that says “teamwork makes the dream work,” and yes, it might be cliche, but regardless of that, there’s a lot of truth to it. When you work together as one, as a team, and rely on each other’s strengths, you’re all able to shine while being the best that you can be.

There might be someone on your team that has a large variety of talents, but when they take on more responsibility than they can handle or don’t let other team members work in areas that they excel at, then it might lead to problems with the culture and the ability to complete the task in the right way.

Think of it this way – if you have too many “superstars” or “superheroes” on the team and not enough people that act as the glue, then the team can fall apart. When you work as a team, then each individual can take on a task, and help get the ball rolling towards the universal goal of the company.

Build Upon Each Other’s Strengths

We see superheroes as someone that can do it all. The most common ones I can think of are the Avengers. Captain America has strength, speed, fast reflexes, and senses. Iron Man has the agility and flying abilities. The Hulk has super strength. Lastly, Black Widow doesn’t have any superpowers but she’s one of the most well-trained humans out there. Now, each of these individuals is great on their own, but when you have them work together as a team, they are unstoppable.

In a real-world environment, if a company has too many superheroes and they’re not working together as one, it can lead to failure, goals not being accomplished or even worse.

By knowing your role (what you excel in) then you can focus on becoming the best person for that role. Let’s say you’re in charge of the marketing department. Rather than having five people that are mediocre at graphic design, have someone that is a design expert and can focus on the graphic design tasks. Other members of the team then can focus on each of their own specialties, say typography or color palettes.  

As we talked about previously, finding complementary strengths for your team may be a better way to succeed than trying to find ways to improve your team’s weaknesses.  By finding teammates who get lost in doing the things that others find tedious or intimidating can help everyone focus on what they do well and keep the organization moving forward. 

Sometimes teams can have people who want to get the glory – score the goal, close the deal, find the critical data or insight.  My philosophy for teams I have led and coached has always been, “I do not care if YOU score a goal, I care that WE score a goal.”  If we can all focus on the larger goal of winning versus a personal goal of scoring, we are aligned, and often the personal goals are achieved along the way.  In college lacrosse this year, the University of Maryland had the best player in the nation on their team, but their team was always talked about as being unselfish.  The players often made another pass before scoring a goal, recognizing that the next guy might have the marginally better shot than the previous guy.  This team play leads them to a national championship and an undefeated season.  Other teams, with great recruiting classes who got many 5-star recruits, this year did not even make it into the final tournament.  I don’t know for sure, but it begs the question, were they unable to get their superstars to play as a team?  

Superstars are people who are relied on to score the goal, do the work, etc.  Sometimes when we have these people on our teams, others will just stop to watch and wait for them to do the work.  I see this sometimes in lacrosse.  Often times there is a dominant scorer, and everyone just gets him the ball, and by everyone, I mean coaches and players, so that that person with his wicked shot can score the goal and the team can win.  But what happens when that player gets injured or is unable to play?  The rest of the team has become so reliant on that person, that they have let their fundamental skills wane and they are unable to perform.  They stopped practicing moving and getting open because they knew that all they had to do was get the ball to the superstar and he would carry the load.  Now all of a sudden they are required to step back in and score their own goals, make good passes to their teammates, etc.  

Assemble the Right Team

It can be confusing knowing where to start with this process. Here at Tackship Consulting, we can help your team discover and implement their strengths into their everyday tasks. Whether restructuring or transitioning employees into other roles where they’d shine the best, we are here to help you.

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting. To learn more, schedule your free consultation today. 

How To Utilize Your Strengths At Work


Why is it important to find your strengths

Where do you spend your energy, working on what you are already strong at or trying to improve where you feel you have weaknesses?

In life, it can be beneficial to know what areas you excel at and which ones need some work. When you take the time to find your specific strengths, you can know what goes best with your personality while not overwhelming yourself.

Even though you might have heard growing up that weaknesses are “failures,” that’s actually quite the opposite. By taking the time to learn, grow, and find what you’re good at, you can become more successful because you can hone in those specific areas. 

Examples of common strengths in the workplace

This table showcases some of the most common strengths in the workplace. I want to challenge you to pick your top 3-5 skills and write them down on a piece of paper. Then take a look and see how you’re currently utilizing these skills in your job, and then for the ones you’re not using, take those to your boss and ask how you might be able to incorporate them into your daily tasks. 

DependableHard WorkingFlexibleTeam-Oriented
LeaderInterpersonal SkillsSelf-MotivatedOrganized
Strong Will-PowerFocusedMotivatedAnalytical Thinking
Strategic ThinkingWilling To HelpAlways Eager To LearnAble To Communicate
Fast LearnerDisciplinedConfidentReliable
PatientActive ListeningHonestyStrong Work Ethic

Consider this, if you are working in your strength areas, you may find that you can work longer and more energized than when you have to do things that are not your strength areas. Here is an example, one of my Clifton StrengthsFinder Strengths is in the Influencer category: Activator. I love to put new ideas into action. I have most of my energy at the start of a project.

My strength is not dealing with day-to-day or execution of a project, whereas other people like having a checklist of things to do and feel a sense of accomplishment for completing tasks. I feel best when I am getting things started and moving ideas into action, then I want to find the next idea and help put it into action. When it comes to Execution, my top Strength is in. The arranger is a strength where I like to look at resources and optimize them for the situation that they are in.

This is great when things need optimization, but I may not be your guy when things are optimized already, and people with strengths like Focus, Deliberative, and Discipline may be the right people to execute the plan to completion.

Examples of common weaknesses in the workplace

Follow the same protocol we did above for the strengths, but now for your weaknesses. Write down 3-5 areas that you wish to improve on a piece of paper. Then create a couple of ideas that can help you mitigate these areas. This may be a goal, a tool to help you, and/or talking to your peers, your boss, or other trusted people (Executive Coach?) to figure out how to overcome your weaknesses.  

Yes, it can be uncomfortable talking about your weaknesses.  But your vulnerability and honesty in recognizing these areas can help you and your team put the right people in the right jobs for success. 

ComplainerUnwilling To LearnConstant ComplainingLazy
ImpulsiveImpatientHesitantOverburdening Themselves
Can’t Delegate To Their TeamLow ConfidenceLack of PatienceLow Productivity
PerfectionistUnorganizedUnmotivatedUnwilling To Help
Passive ListeningTardinessTimidTalkative
Can’t Create A Work-Life Balance SelfishMicromanagingConstant Self-Criticism

Now, I shared about strengths above, what about weaknesses? I recently spent way too much of my time scheduling youth lacrosse for K-8th grade kids in San Diego. I love it from the point of view of arranging teams to play each other, and continually tweaking the schedule to keep things optimized. However, details often sneak by me and I miss some things.  It is embarrassing and humbling when people start calling and telling me that the schedule is all messed up.  Next year I need to find a person to help me with this, but going over the schedule and making sure all the details are right before it is published!

Here is another example:  when painting a room, I am all over the roller, doing big picture application of paint to the walls (another strength is Strategic), whereas my wife is more interested in brushwork along the edges and ensuring that the detail is correct, as well as filling in the areas where maybe the roller did not apply paint as evenly (it’s the roller, not the painter!).

One of my weaknesses is details. What do I do about that? Should I go out and take a class, get training, or find a mentor? I think that is appropriate to some degree, but what I think is great is that I found a teammate who has a different strength than me, in this case, detail work, so that we as a team can accomplish more, better.

How to utilize your skills at work

When it comes to my wife and me, we are very different, but together we make things work. The same can be said for your team. Can you get your team working where they are energized and excel, and figure out where that is, and where they can complement each other?

If you’re a natural-born leader that knows how to motivate your coworkers while keeping the team moving together cohesively, then speak with your boss about how and what you need to do to start making the transition into a leadership role.

Or maybe you are detailed oriented and want to start transitioning from the sales team into data analysis for your current employers. Go to your boss and see if there’s a way to start making that dream a reality.

Now, sometimes it’s not possible to incorporate your skills into your current role, and if that’s the case, it would be wise to start looking for a new position that will put your strengths to good use. When you can do that, you may find more success and optimization in your organization.

Get Professional Help

Here at Tackship Consulting, we can help you or your team discover their strengths and how they can start incorporating them into their everyday tasks. Whether transitioning to another role or providing more opportunities where they can shine, we are here for you.

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting. Schedule your free consultation to learn more about the process! 

The Data Component of Traction

Data Component of Traction

Data Component of Traction

Data is a great and comforting thing for me. I like to see numbers, so I know where I stand. Am I improving? Has my performance declined? Statistics about performance abound, in sports, business, and even our personal lives. Fantasy sports is all about tracking the performance of individual players or teams, and we create competitions based on this data.

The stock market is all about different metrics on the performance of companies, which we invest or divest of so that we can increase our personal value.

Personally, my 100-yard freestyle swimming time is something that I’d like to see go down over the years that I have been swimming.   

Measuring something can help to maintain focus on that thing. Numbers are a fascinating way to track our lives, personally and professionally. I think about the number of people who track their performance in running, swimming, weight lifting, cycling, weight loss, and calories. If we focus on numbers, we can figure out what we need to do to move the number in the direction we desire. For example, Weight Watchers has historically been a way for people to lose weight by focusing on calories or points and tracking those numbers daily to create change in weight for people.  

Similarly, in business, focusing on our data can allow us to see the performance of our company and see if we are moving towards our goals (10-year target, 3-year picture, 1-year plan, Quarterly Rocks). As we set our goals in the Vision component of Traction, we want them to be SMART, and if you recall the “M” in SMART, it stands for measurable. When we measure and keep track of the data, it will allow us to see how close or how far away we are to the desired outcome. 

Providing people with measurables and targets can help them focus on something important. There needs to be a balance to set the right measure for people to track their performance while integrating it into the rest of the organization. If your sales team is bringing in more work than your operations team can service, you may want to adjust your sales team number to larger clients rather than the number of clients.  

EOS Measurable Advantages:

  1. Numbers cut through the murky subjective communication between manager and direct reports
  2. Numbers create accountability
  3. Accountable people appreciate numbers
  4. Numbers generate clarity and commitment
  5. Numbers create competition 
  6. Numbers produce results
  7. Numbers create teamwork
  8. Numbers help solve problems faster

Create a scorecard

Creating a scorecard is a great way to track data. The Traction scorecard looks like this:

Who – is the person accountable for the measurable.

What is the Measurable? Anything that you can easily track: revenue, cash flow, new leads, and customer satisfaction. 

What is the goal for the metric?  The goal of the Company Scorecard is to go over it at the weekly meeting. Then track the number each week of the quarter to monitor progress.

As with most Traction approaches, there should be a limited number of measurables, 5-15, and less is more since you want to focus on what is essential and not just measure things for measurement’s sake. Allowing for objective, data-driven analysis of performance, helping people to stay focused on tasks that help improve the numbers.

Keep focusing on the measurables for at least the quarter, and if something needs to change, then it needs to wait until the next quarter. Eventually, you will dial in the right measurables so that your employees, divisions, departments, and company are all tracking the right things that help to achieve your rocks, plan, picture, and target – this is Traction. 

Get Professional Help

Our professional team can help you create measurable goals that everyone can easily follow. 

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting today. To learn more, schedule your free consultation.

The Process Component of Traction

The Process Component of Traction

Your Values & “Why”

There is a lot of value to “why” your company does something. The why can help your customers resonate with your product or service or potentially even your ability to attract and retain talent. 

A process is the “how” you interact and serve your customers. In the Traction book, it’s referred to as the “way” you conduct business. It is an essential aspect of the definition of your company. If your team can articulate it, it gives you an air of professionalism, giving confidence to your customers that you know what you are doing.

The process is often associated with large corporations and can also be associated with bureaucracy or rigidity that does not allow for creativity. However, everything we do in life follows processes.

Processes are a part of life

What we do when we wake up in the morning, to our arrival at work, is all a process that we do every day. Similarly, how you serve your customers can be easily articulated. When you document your process, you can better understand customer touchpoints and who is interacting with the customers– allowing you to better train employees.

Likely, you have sales/marketing and operations departments, where the product gets generated, or the customer gets served, and a finance/admin team where functions like hiring and payroll get done.  

One TackShip customer has an overarching process of Design, Build, Maintain – three basic steps that when combined with their “why” and their “what,” sets them apart from their competition.  

Another TackShip customer provides real estate services. Documenting how they can serve their customers in the discovery process and secure the space for their customers, allows them to provide the needed insight for customers who may not understand the process. The brand is their process, and you could even go so far as to trademark your own process.

Keeping the process simple

In previous blog posts, we’ve talked about the process of creating an Accountability Chart. You may have already started by identifying core functions and who is accountable for their performance. Eventually, you want to be able to identify the steps of each of these functions so that they are repeatable and do not rely on a single “hero” to complete.  

If you find that your process is lacking, you may want to create a new aspirational process, which is how you would like your customers served better. In this case, determining where you are and where you want to go can help create a roadmap for investment in tools, process development, or people who can take your system to the next level. In documenting processes, as with all things in the EOS world, the KISS (keep it simple, stupid) principle applies.

Similarly, to the process, the easier it is to understand, and the easier it is for employees and customers to learn. In Traction, this can be done by documenting the 20% of the process that gets 80% of the results. Write down the steps of your process with some bullet points of specific procedures. 

Here are some examples of core processes in an organization:

1. HR 

2. Sales 

3. Marketing 

4. Operations

5. Accounting

6. Customer Retention

By focusing on the individual core processes for each department, you can help to ensure the intended success of the organization as a whole.

Get Professional Help

Figuring out the process for your company and documenting it can be daunting. Tackship Consulting is a professional executive coaching firm that can help. We specialize in helping organizations like yours navigate the pain points to take their business to the next level.

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting today. To learn more, schedule your free consultation.

What Is A High Performing Culture

High Performing Culture

Creating a Culture That Lasts

“Culture eats Strategy for Breakfast” – <attribution>

Culture is a critical part of your company.  If you don’t get the culture right and ensure that it continues to develop in meaningful ways, toxicity, dissatisfaction, and retention can become real issues.  

When the focus turns towards creating a high-performing culture, it gives everyone a better understanding of what is needed and expected to keep the company healthy and performing at a high level.

Seven key aspects for a High Performing Culture

During my time at the Townsend Institute at Concordia University Irvine, the following seven aspects were identified as critical in helping employees work as effectively as possible while also creating value and optimizing the company’s performance.

Trust Trust is an ability to personally connect beyond a task at hand and work together as a team. 

There are two types of trust, predictive trust, and vulnerability-based trust. First, let’s look at predictive trust. When it comes to this type of trust, there’s this idea that if I ask you to complete a task, you will do it. 

With vulnerability-based trust, people accept their coworkers, even though they might make mistakes and aren’t perfect.  Patrick Lencioni calls this “bare naked trust”. Basically that you are able to accept and be accepted by your coworkers, both for strengths and weaknesses.

Autonomy Autonomy is the ability to use talents and implement new ideas that help the company. 

Letting people have the ability to try and learn, fail and grow helps them become more capable and take on more responsibilities. And as we mentioned in our last blog post, make sure that the visions and values of the company are clear so that it gives a guide for future decision making. The opposite of autonomy, is micro-managing, which no one likes.  

Ownership Ownership is about taking on responsibility while performing roles with ease.

Employees should be able to take ownership of their place within the organization and have the ability to make decisions on how they want to get tasks done. This directly correlates with autonomy because as long as the standards are set up front, let employees do their job and see if they can achieve or exceed the expectations set for them. 

Truthfulness– Truthfulness is not being afraid to speak and receive the truth.

Similar to ownership and autonomy, if you’re able to trust your employees to have a clear understanding of the vision and values, then they should also have the ability to speak the truth based on how they perceive it.

By having the space to bring up what is bothering them or ways things could improve within the organization, helps the team continue to grow, understand, and feel ready to take on more responsibilities.  It also can provide a sense of ownership within the organization

Facing and resolving negative realities– It’s normal to make mistakes in life, don’t be afraid of talking about them. 

No one is perfect, and regardless of how hard someone works, things won’t always go according to plan. Often, mistakes are made by employees.  These mistakes can be from a number of reasons, lack of training, misguided enthusiasm, and rarely they might even be malicious.  Understanding and allowing imperfect people room to learn allows for growth and trust within the corporate culture. That said, there is a difference between a misdemeanor mistake and a felony mistake.

A misdemeanor is when someone makes a small mistake but with the right intentions, or possibly needs more training. A felony is when someone makes a big mistake, from a position of malice or neglect which may have significant or grave consequences for the company.  

It is up to leadership to determine the difference, and figure out how the potential of their people. Don’t spend time trying to fix something that won’t change. 

Development– Development is the opportunity to focus on bettering your current skills or even taking the time to learn some new ones.

In life, the only constant thing is change. This means you need to understand how to help support your team, both technically and relationally. It doesn’t matter if the support comes through coaching, conferences, or training. What matters is providing opportunities for your employees to continue to be successful and knowing how to assist them along the way. 

Mission orientation– Mission Orientation is knowing the bigger picture while ensuring that everything aligns with the mission and vision. When you understand the mission and values of the organization, you feel a part of the team, you can relate with your coworkers, which means the culture can continue to grow.

The importance of a High Performing Culture

Culture is essential to the success of any company. It doesn’t matter how skilled your employees are or how long you’ve been in business. When the culture is toxic, nothing will go according to plan.

Values need to be lived, not just aspirational. As a leader, you have opportunities to celebrate values and ensure that those who are behaving in ways that exemplify them are recognized.  You cannot over-communicate your values.     The success of any business comes from everyone working as a team. If there’s a toxic environment, the organization can’t function properly. If you have a toxic culture, your company won’t function well. But once you deal with the toxic culture and provide a place where employees can grow and develop, you’ll start to reap the benefits.

Get Professional Help

Knowing where to start and how to create a high-performing culture can feel intimidating, but you don’t have to do it alone.

Tackship Consulting can help you understand the areas you’re doing well in and where you can improve while creating a culture that supports the growth and development of your employees.

Activate your passion, and optimize your performance with Tackship Consulting today. To learn more, schedule your free consultation.