Leadership Lessons: Too Much Capitalism and not Enough Teamwork

Last week I was travelling through the San Francisco airport with time to kill. I decided to treat myself to a mini-massage in one of those popular “airport spas”. I was introduced to Hargrove, the gentle man who would single-mindedly devote the next 30 minutes to the physical well being of my neck and back.  […]

Help! I’m Buried By My Inbox

NOTE FROM EDITOR: We are excited to announce the launch of our brand new training course, Getting Things Done®. In the month of August, we will highlight the skills and principles from Getting Things Done in our author Q&A article. Enjoy! Dear Crucial Skills, Can you help me better understand how, and more particularly when, I […]

How to Say “No” and Reclaim Your Career

Dear Crucial Skills, How do you say “no” to requests and projects that come across your desk? I want to be helpful and do everything that’s asked of me, but if I said “yes” to every request I received, I wouldn’t actually get to my top priorities and that would reflect poorly on my performance. […]

Is Your To-Do List Keeping You Up at Night?

NOTE FROM EDITOR: We are excited to announce the launch of our brand new training course, Getting Things Done®. In the month of August, we will highlight the skills and principles from Getting Things Done in our author Q&A article. Enjoy! Dear Crucial Skills, The worst feeling is waking up in the middle of the […]

How to Manage it All

NOTE FROM EDITOR: We are excited to announce the launch of our brand new training course, Getting Things Done®. In the month of August, we will be highlighting the skills and principles from Getting Things Done in our author Q&A article. Enjoy! Dear Crucial Skills, What is the best way to manage both work responsibilities […]

How to Change Someone’s Opinion of You

Dear Crucial Skills, Last year, our department’s vice president was laid off and the entire group was moved under the Director of Operations, someone I didn’t know very well. Since the change, he has not made much of an effort to get to know our team and I have had only a handful of interactions […]

How to Get Respect From the Boss

Dear Crucial Skills, My boss and I have weekly one-on-one meetings. During these meetings, he frequently takes phone calls from his family, gets up in the middle of a discussion to use his personal restroom, and allows workers to just barge in to talk to him. I’m very frustrated with these interactions but he is […]

How to End a Relationship Stand-Off

Dear Crucial Skills, I work with clients who are in conflict with each other. Their “stories” about the other person make resolution impossible. They’ve been in conflict with each other for so long that they are convinced that their judgments are facts. For example, they are both convinced the other person is a jerk, a […]

Imagine

As a boy growing up in the 50s and 60s, I faced threats from all sorts of juvenile delinquents, “hoods,” and other shifty teenagers we now call bullies. Modern experts suggest that mid-century hoodlums were unhappy with their lives and consequently determined to bring a balance to the universe. They accomplished this by striking fear […]

What Should We Do and How Do We Get Everyone To Do It?

Dear Crucial Skills, How does the Influencer model relate to processes such as: PDCA/DMAIC Cycles, Quality Circles, Statistical Process Control, Continuous Improvement/Kaizen, Lean/Six Sigma, and other Quality-Related approaches to Process Improvement? Signed, Curious ______________________ Dear Curious, Welcome to the history of the Quality Movement! I’ve been lucky enough to work with many of the organizations […]

Resolving a Sibling Rivalry

Dear Crucial Skills, My father passed away last summer after a six-month battle from mesothelioma. I was named as financial power and my sister as medical power of attorney in my parents’ will. My older brother went ballistic. Since then, he’s tried taking control of everything surrounding my Dad, my parent’s house, and now my […]