The book review for this week is The Power of the Other by Dr. Henry Cloud
Dr. Henry Cloud is one of my favorite authors. He focuses on improving human performance by addressing psychological issues that all of us deal with. This book is no exception. He describes the four corners that all of us experience at least once in our careers:
- Corner 1 – Disconnected: being disconnected emotionally and functionally from those around you. Decisions are made in isolation and the quality of the decisions get worse over time
Recently, I was a guest on “Ideas and Stuff”, a Calgary based podcast (episode 50). One of the questions they provided in advance for me to think about and prepare for was; “If you could go back to the day you started your business/career, what would you tell yourself?”
As it turns out, we had a great conversation during the podcast and never quite got to this question! However, the question did really get me thinking.
If I could back up my career, what do I wish I knew that would make a big difference?
As many of you know, I am an electrical engineer by education and practiced in this field for quite a few years.
As engineers, we are forced to focus on numbers, formulas, Lagrangian multipliers, and other theorems that would give most people nightmares! However, as the Dilbert stereotype so aptly illustrates, we are generally not taught the basic things about effective communication, teamwork, or leadership!
So, what would I tell myself if I could go back to the day I started my career?
If your business does not issue a monthly newsletter, you are missing out on one of the easiest and most powerful ways to communicate to your employees!
A properly written newsletter can deliver timely and valuable information to employees in a consistent way that is hard to match with other types of media.
I have seen many examples of company newsletters over the years, from large oil companies to small engineering firms . . . from simple one pagers to monstrous 20+ pagers!
My favorite newsletter was one I received at a small employee owned organization. Although this one was not monthly, it did provide a great update on the company health, the money we were making, and where the business leaders thought we were headed.
What does a great newsletter look like and what are the benefits?
I find that books are more powerful than any other teaching medium. They are unique packages of an author’s wisdom that provide a different experience for every reader.
Because we all have different life experiences, we interpret what we read through the lens of our own distinctive experiences. This means that two people can read the same book and come away with completely different life changing insights! It also means that you can read the same book more than once over the years and learn something different from it each time!
That is why Timothy Ferriss’ Tribe of Mentors is such a powerful book. Through his insightful questions and powerful interviewing style, Ferriss has distilled the profound wisdom of more than 100 of the world’s most influential people into a single book. It is a treasure trove of wisdom!
Through my lens or worldview, I have selected 88 pieces of wisdom and advice from Tribe of Mentors which I share below. Acting on any one of these pieces of advice could make a profound difference in your life. Acting on more than one is guaranteed to change you!
By many accounts, Ray Dalio is a very successful person. He is most well known for being the founder and the driving force of Bridgewater Associates, which Forbes calls “the fifth most important private company in the United States.”
However, what many people don’t know about Dalio is that he is the creator of some amazing systems that, among other things:
- Measure performance
- Spur innovative thinking
- Motivate people to develop and grow
- Position businesses for success
He credits much of his personal and business success to the creation and implementation of these systems.
One of these systems is for employee performance management. Although performance reviews are typically the bane of every employee and manager’s existence, Bridgewater has created an engaging system that gets beyond many of the pitfalls of traditional performance assessments.