For the past three year’s I have been chipping away at the Sierra High Route (SHR) with three of my friends. It is a 195-mile trek through the heart of the Sierra Nevada mountain range from Kings Canyon National Park to Yosemite National Park and north. 100 miles are off-trail, demanding route finding, boulder scrambles, and blissful solitude (my count of the ratio of people on the John Muir Trail compared to the SHR is 30:1). We plan to complete the route next summer.
This past week we entered at Kearsarge Pass (Independence, CA), hiked up then down to Roads End (Kings Canyon National Park), then north on the SHR to Bishop Pass (Bishop, Ca).
A few highlights were:
- 5.5 climbing up Cirque Pass
- Watching a herd of deer below Frozen Lake Pass
- Daily alpenglow
- Jarrod’s deep 3-word statements such as, “I got deet!”
- Undistracted existence
Many people guide our lives.
My parents showed me how to love. Teachers showed me how to think. Mentors showed me how to put it all together for life.
People I have never known have taught me much as well. Take Sun Tzu for instance, the author of the 5th-century Chinese military treatise, The Art of War. He showed me how to think strategically. Another is Lewis Sperry Chafer, a 20th-century theologian, and author of He That Is Spiritual. He showed me how to be an ever spiritual person.
But the person who shows me things every day is the Holy Spirit. He is the ultimate guide.
My Pastor, Dan Frank, says it this way, “Let God disciple you.” How true this is! (Hear six dimensions of the Holy Spirit in Dan’s sermon here)
We often look to so many other sources and people, yet God is the best. Decrease the noise and stimulus around you, and focus on following His lead.
Chris McChesney, The 4 Disciplines of Execution
Executive at Franklin Covey
- What do leaders struggle with more: strategy or execution?
- What are people educated in?
- We tend to blame people, but it’s the leader’s problem to work at further (change the system and process)
- When it comes to
- The 4 Disciplines of Execution (natural laws): focus, leverage, engagement, and accountability
- Focus on the wildly important. Narrow the focus; cut out the 11-20 extra goals
- There will always be more good ideas than the ability to execute
- Don’t blur the day to day operations with goals
- What are the fewest battles necessary to win the war? One WIG per team at the same time. You can veto, but you can’t dictate. From X to Y by when?
- Two best friends of execution: simplicity and transparency
- Lead measures like homework, work to attain the lag measure
- Keep a compelling scoreboard – people play differently when we/they are keeping score. Go for a players scorecard, not a bosses scorecard
- Greatest success measure is how people feel about if they are winning
- Do people feel like they are playing a winnable game
- Create A Cadence of Accountability
- WIG Meeting: Report on last week. Review scorecard. Make commitments.
- Greatest principle in execution is creating a “pull”
- The natural laws for execution turn out to be the same laws of engagement
Erin Meyer, The Culture Map
Professor at INSEAD, Consultant and Author
- Cross-cultural interactions demand awareness and sensitivity to each other’s differences
John C. Maxwell, (Add Value to People)
Leadership Expert and Author
- The first step of leadership is to help people think intentionally
- It starts with adding value to people
- As a leader, are you adding value to people, or are you wanting them to add value to you?
- There is a thin line between manipulating and motivating
- 3 questions that followers ask leaders: Do you like me? Can you help me? Can I trust you?
- Everything worthwhile is uphill all the way
- Everyone has uphill goals and downhill habits
- The only way to break downhill habits is to be intentional
- Selfishness and significance or incompatible
- As Christ-followers, we’re going to have to ask ourselves “Are we going to connect with people or correct people – do the prior.”
- Five things John does every day: value people, think of ways to add value to people, look for ways to add value to people, add value to people, encourage others to add values to others
- Intentional living is upfront thinking/preparing. The other way is reacting.
- Who am I going to see today/tomorrow and how am I going to add value?
Officer in the Salvation Army, Advocate and Author
- Bible – Judges 6-7
- Let God be your chiropractor (adjust you)
- Posture Shifts: Shalom (center of God), True Humility (agreeing with God about who you are; insecurity), True Dependence (agreeing with God about who he is), Pockets of Dependency (away from self-sufficiency, co-dependance, pride, etc.)
CEO Capella Hotel Group
- Tell people where you’re going on the first day
- The first day of work is key
- Repeat your core values every day
- Focus on reminding people where you’re heading and how they are contributing
- Cost cutting can kill your business – be careful with what you cost
- What does the market/your customers want?
- Empower your people – respect them
- Join-in to their thinking
Wilfredo de Jesus
Senio Pastor of New Life Covenant Church
- A leader stops learning, he stops leading
- Engage culture
- We must bring good to the picture
- This is not the time to withdraw, but to engage
- Be the salt and the light
- Get outside of your church walls
- Put aside your opinions and gain those of Christ (truly loving others!)
- Don’t deviate from God’s plan
- Be like a pilot of a plane that makes thousands of in-air adjustments to make the flight plan
- Adjustments mean repentance at times
- Face it that we have wrong in our life
- We must change as a church and repent
- The Titanic had four warnings before it hit the iceberg – what pushed them on to disaster?
- A scared world needs a fearless church
- Keep growing our faith
Jossy Chako, Expand Your Leadership Reach
Founder and President of Empart Inc.
- Enlarge your vision
- Can you be trusted with more
- Just keeping and maintaining is not an option, we must multiply
- Are you leading to manage or to multiply?
- When people hear vision, they should know the size and power of your God
- Vision should keep you up at night and motivated during the day
- If your vision doesn’t sound like this, you need to enlarge it
- People will come and try to “pop” your vision “bubble”
- Don’t be confused about what people think about your vision
- If your vision is to be content, you will not see the opportunities around you
- You need the help of others and miracles around you
- Empower your people
- Your leadership reach will be limited by how you empower others
- Don’t get stuck in the present or you’ll miss the needed horizon
- Focus on building the character before you empower
- Empowering leadership is not being in front, but being alongside others
- Make sure you have agreed (clear) outcomes and measurements
- Embrace Risk
- Without faith you cannot please God. Risk is in faith.
- Three paradigms to change: risk is friend to love, not to be feared; see comfort and safety as your enemies;
- Fear is from the devil. Give it back and embrace the bodacious faith God gives.
- Be permanently hinged on the door of risk
- By not taking risk, who is missing out on the blessing
- Don’t let earthly practices stop the heavenly possibilities
- Increase your pain threshold
- Do these 3: list of dreams, then time-frame on when you’ll do them, then who’s going to hold you accountable
Dr. Travis Bradberry
Emotionally Intelligence 2.0
- Stimulus hits the brain’s emotion sector first, then moves to the rational sector
- EQ and IQ and personality are not related in any way
- You cannot change your IQ, but you can change your emotional intelligence
- If you “spot it, you got it.”
- 4 Skills: Self-Awareness (what’s going on with you), Self-Managment (dealing with what’s going on with you), Social-Awareness (what’s going on with others), Relationship Managment (use first 3 skills in concert; seeing how your behavior impacts others)
- Increasing your EQ takes time to develop new reaction pathways in the brain
- Get your stress (severity and duration) under control. It works for you in ways, and against you in others (i.e. turn off your phone, breathing exercises, thankful thinking, etc.)
- Get more high-quality sleep to remove toxic protein build-up in the brain from each day (i.e. don’t take anything to go to sleep, no blue wavelength light in the evening which hinders melatonin production, bad sleep equals gain weight, etc.)
- Get your caffeine intake under control. Short-term it increases fight or flight response. Coffee has a 6-hour half-life – stop drinking after 12 pm.
Founder of the Table Group and Bestselling Author
- The ideal team player is: humble, hungry, (people) smart
- Humble only: The Pawn
- Hungry only: The Bulldozer
- Smart only: The Charmer
- Humble and Hungry: Accidental Mess Maker
- Humble and Smart: Lovable Slacker
- Hungry and Smart: Skillful Politician
- Take people off site for interviews – see how they interact in real life situations
- Repeat questions during job interviews
- Ask what other people would say about them (interviewer)
- Listen to your gut and intuition when evaluating people
- Scare people with sincerity
Bill Hybels, The Lenses of Leadership
Founder and Senior Pastor of Willow Creek Church
- Motivated workers are 40% more impactful than unmotivated
- Team members want to feel the heat and passion from their leader
- Leaders must keep their passion buckets filled
- It’s dangerous if your passion is low
- Everyone wins when we lead with enthusiasm and energy
- “Banana Room” was the crucial conversation place for Bill’s dad
- Build a high trust, high development culture
- An organization will only be as healthy as the leader wants it to be
- Call the best out of people
- Leaders/employers have the opportunity to change the story line in people’s lives
- Religion = Do, Christianity = Done
- “Water Cooler” noise/conversations bring down morale and distracts mission
- Strategy Operations courage people (card sorts)
- Talent Observation (get with workers) will help you recognize the superstars for the future of the org
- Are we seeing out of healthy lenses?
- The speed of the leader will be the speed of the team
- 15 minute Bible reading a day is impactful
- Constant readjusting of goals is critical for maximum performance
- Staff wants to know goals, but more so, that the leader is proud of their progress/how they’re doing
- It is cruel and unusual punishment for bosses not to tell their people how they’re doing (at least every six months)
- “Goal-aholics” suffocates people
- What personal and organizational legacy are you leading/living today?
- Leaders must identify where to put energy
- God specializes in rewriting narratives
- Leadership is a drug and addictive
- God’s design is to flourish in all aspects of life
- Reflect on your legacy
- Leadership matters so much that it scares me more and more!
- If you’re not excited about where you’re at, it’s on you…figure it out and fill the passion bucket
Alan Mulally, Working Together
President and CEO of Ford Motor Company (2006-2014)
- Identify reality and deal with it
- Learn to work as a team
- Change your culture
- Leadership and your shadow matter’s
Melinda Gates (Interview)
Co-Chair, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
- “All lives have equal value.”
- I am an impatient optimist
- Extreme poverty has been cut in half over the last 20 years, and we can make even more progress quicker today
- Good things are happening around the world
- One person really can change a lot
- The practice of silence is an important spiritual discipline for her
- She doesn’t go to her phone as the 1st thing of the day
- Vaccines take 25 years to get to the developing world, their agency rapidly speeds this up
- Go into the world/villages as a humble learner – listen to them
- It takes me time to reengage in the West after visiting the developing world – it’s intense (out there)
- Give away your time, energy, and money
Much is currently being written, discussed, and experienced as it relates to the speed of culture change.
Along with many of these culture changes, are changes in the way people interact, learn, and exist.
I do not think that the traditional classroom will teach us how to be innovative, or even keep up, let alone impact the world around us.
We need to break down our doors, exit often, and learn in the worldroom – breath by breath, experiential awareness, and engagement of the world around us.
Go tonight. Go often.
In May of 1804, Lewis and Clark set off on what would be an epic adventure for the ages. Their commission was to find a water route from the mighty Mississippi to the Pacific Ocean. Little did they know, they would have to ditch their boats, become mountain men, and learn to lead the party in new and unexpected ways. They had to lead off the (known-to-them) map.
Tod Bolsinger writes in the book, Canoeing The Mountains, that leaders today are living such an adventure as well. The world has changed, demanding that leaders learn new ways to not only survive, but to thrive at their mission.
Bolsinger shares three traits that a leader must embody: technical competence, relational congruence, and adaptive capacity. Further, that if the root mission does not trump everything, the journey will not go far.
“If you can adapt and adventure, you can thrive. But you must let go, learn as you go and keep going no matter what.” (Pg. 34)
“When our old maps fail us, something within us dies.
Replacing our paradigms is both deeply painful and absolutely critical.” (Pg. 93)
“Exploration teaches us to see the familiar through a new frame.
Exploration brings differentiation.
Exploration requires us to become expert experimenters.
Exploration demands our best selves.” (Pg. 206).
Canoeing The Mountains is a must read for anyone wrestling with the present future. It is a new go-to resource in my life, and I expect to recommend it often.