From Lessons

‘No Excuses, Sir!’

In the ROTC cadet officers corps, you learn four basic responses. ‘Sir, yes, sir!’ ‘Sir, no, sir!’ ‘Sir, I’ll find out, sir!’ and ‘Sir, no excuses, sir!’ Of the four, I’ve found the fourth to be most useful in life, in work. If you want to take a peek into the mental makeup of a person working for you, e.g. an assistant, etc. or a person you’re working with, e.g. a business partner, etc., wait until he/she needs to make an excuse to explain some failure—and find out those who do not. (Image edited from: Wikipedia)

Don’t ask for permission to lead

There’s so much empty platitudes about leadership you can find lying around that you can easily choke on them at any given day. Leadership is about initiative, open-mindedness, grit, grace under pressure, and many other things to many other people. You don’t need a management school for this. “How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge” shows us we don’t have to be the most monied, physically strongest, or most intellectual to lead. So go, lead. (Image edited from: Toxno)

Complete the staff work

I don’t know when and where the term “completed staff work” started. All I know is I want more people to f*cking follow and do it. Gen. G.E.R. Smith’s final test of ‘[i]f you were the chief would you be willing to sign the paper you have prepared, and stake your professional reputation on it being right? If the answer is in the negative, take it back and work it over because it is not yet “completed staff work”’ pretty much sums it up. Here’s an elementary way to look it, if your staff turns in work without running a simple spell check, never mind a grammar check, either he doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing, or he simply doesn’t think that much of you. Either way, it’s a cheap way to operate. Are you cheap? (Image edited from: Relearn Habits)

Learn how to decide

If it’s Urgent and Important, do it asap. If it’s Important, but Not Urgent, calendar it. If it’s Urgent, but Not Important, pay somebody else to do it. If it’s Not Urgent and Not Important, what the hell are you doing with it anyway? Learn more in Inc.’s “3 Decision-Making Models Used by Warren Buffett and Jeff Bezos.” (Image edited from: What But Why)

What did you fail at this week?

There are people afraid to fail. But don’t discount the number of people who are afraid to succeed. You know, those who waste your time with over-analysis and other repetitive nothings, but in the end cannot put it together, never mind pull the trigger. Yeah, those types. In “Billionaire CEO Sara Blakely Says These 7 Words Are the Best Career Advice She Ever Got,” Sara explains how her father did her a big favor. If you’re a dad, this is good. That aside, I don’t know why, but I repeatedly fail at not being curious at the close phonetics between “Sara Blakely” and “Blake Lively,” tbh. Why? (Image edited from: Career Girl Daily)

He who rests, rusts

I cannot imagine right now to live without this pressure. In some moments, it is a bad attitude because in moments like this, it can be too much. But it is part of what makes Bayern Munich what it is. That drive does not only involve winning on the field. There is a German saying, “Wer rastet, der rostet,” or “he who rests, rusts,” and the club’s front office has long embraced the notion. Motion is constant (The New York Times).

How to disagree with the Boss

Stay calm. You might feel your heart racing or your face turning red, but do whatever you can to remain neutral in both your words and actions. When your body language communicates reluctance or anxiety, it undercuts the message. It sends a mixed message, and your counterpart gets to choose what to read. Deep breaths can help, as can speaking more slowly and deliberately (HBR).