Monthly Archives: June 2016


One of my favorite quotes is …“Those who drink the water should never forget those who dug the well.”

Monday night, Coastal Carolina University and the University of Arizona baseball teams are playing in the 2016 College World Series Championship Game. Both teams are led by current head coaches Gary Gilmore and Jay Johnson.

However, many decades before these two outstanding head coaches and their teams, a foundation was laid by former head coaches and players. These head coaches and players “dug the well” so the current ones could drink from it.

Effort, Belief, Encouragement, investment, Sacrifice, Commitment, Dedication and Discipline are several words that could likely describe the past coaches and players …. and certainly, the current ones in Omaha today.

So, the question for you is; Who dug your well?

Were it not for the efforts, the belief, the encouragement, or the investment of someone, there is a good chance you would not be where you are today. I know I sure wouldn’t be.

This week as you drink from your well, I challenge you to remember some of those who dug it. Why not take a moment and drop them a note, a phone call, an email or text to express your gratefulness?

Because always remember, “Those who drink the water should never forget those who dug the well.”

Have a great week!



Who dug your well?  How did they help you?


Please Note: This will be my last leadership blog until September 2016. Have a great summer and thank you for your support.



One of the questions I consistently hear is, “What is the key to a growing organization?” In sports, we live in a “copy cat” world. If you are a winner, every team and organization wants to know your formula for success.

The question above feels like it should be complicated, but it’s not. It is really very simple. We want it to be a magic formula, silver bullet, new strategy, or some secret. Sorry, but there are no formulas, strategies, or secrets. There is a key … a key that unlocks growth at every level.

Here it is … growing organizations are led by growing leaders.

I know what you are thinking. “It can’t be that easy.” Actually, it can. However, while it is that easy, it is also very difficult. Just as a healthy relationship needs constant attention, so does growth. Yesterday’s growth will never accomplish tomorrow’s results.

If you examine companies, teams, universities, or even families that are vibrant and growing, you will find they are being led by people who are growing. On the flip side, when a group of people on a mission is stuck, it is because their leaders are bogged down in busyness and aloof to developing a culture of growing leaders. Remember, the goal is growth NOT perfection.

The question is, how does a leader establish and maintain a culture of growing leaders?

The following are a five action steps to consider…

DefineIf you want your people to prioritize growth, tell them your expectation, and define what you mean by growth. You cannot hold them accountable unless you define your expectations. Unless you say it, model it, and inspect it, growth will never become the norm. Why? Because in general people are lazy. You must make it crystal clear that if people want to be a part of your team, they’d better be growing and moving in the right direction.

Read: Growing leaders are consistent readers. A culture of growth is made up of a team who reads together. Consider spending a month or two on a selected resource (a book) designed to address an area that needs improvement. Have everyone on your team read the same chapters each week and build in a planned “growth meeting” each month for discussion and to identify best practices.

Visit: One of the most powerful things a team can do is go somewhere together. Travel causes ideas to flow, ramps up creativity, and causes teams to look in the mirror at their systems and structures.

Discuss: Great teams have great meetings, and great meetings consist of great discussions, healthy discussions. If you want to speed up growth, take time every week to discuss what you are learning, reading on your own, or takeaways from a place you have visited together. If you can’t meet weekly, meet monthly. However the goal is to meet and discuss. Remember, Iron sharpens Iron.

Budget: It should go without saying, but if growing teams and organizations are led by growing leaders, then budgets should reflect a commitment to resourcing your leaders.

Are you a part of a growing organization or are you stuck in neutral? The answer to that question reveals one thing – whether you and your leaders are truly growing or not.

The next level is available, but only if you keep your focus on nurturing a group of growing leaders.

Have a great week!



What other things can a leader do to establish a culture of growth?

Comment Below


For many years I have listened to speaker after speaker say, “Leadership is influence.” However not long ago, I read a quote from author Joseph Grenny. Grenny put a new spin on this idea. He said, “Leadership is Intentional Influence.”

The word intentional takes it to another level. Many leaders achieve accidental influence. However the best ones are intentional.

My son, Zach who is a recent new firefighter at a fire department in SE Georgia has experienced two leaders in his life and career who were intentional about their influence.

One such example of intentional influence is a gentleman who lives in our community. His name is Brian Thompson. Brian is a Captain at our local county fire dept. You see, about 4 years ago, I took my son to see and visit one of our local fire stations. Captain Thompson was on duty this particular day.

Captain Thompson had a choice in that moment of being intentional to influence a young, impressionable HS student who showed interest in pursuing a career as a firefighter – or he had a choice of walking away and not carving out time in his busy schedule to invest in a young mans life.

The other is Capt. Gil Osmer. Capt Osmer is a firefighter / instructor at a large county in NE Atlanta. He took time to intentionally invest in Zach as his instructor through-out recruit school at the fire academy. Capt. Osmer made a lasting impression on a young mans life and career that will far out live him and never be forgotten.

Because Captain Thompson and Captain Osmer paused and prioritized intentional influence, today my son, Zach is a full-time firefighter and in the process of completing his paramedic training.

I am thankful that Captain Thompson and Captain Osmer chose wisely to show intentional influence and speak words of encouragement and wisdom into my son’s life regarding his career as a firefighter / paramedic. They were intentional not accidental. Always remember, a lot more is caught than taught!

Would the people you are influencing today describe your leadership as intentional or accidental? Charisma, skill, and personality all live in the accidental camp …while humility, collaboration, and careful consideration reside in the intentional world.

Regardless of what profession you do in life, if you want to maximize your influence, I suggest you start with being more intentional. Just ask Captain Thompson and Captain Osmer.

Well done gentlemen, well done!



Is there an area in your leadership where you need to be more intentional?