“Growth culture” is the fertile soil of “growth mindset”

To help individuals find a “growth mindset” we need to cultivate a “growth culture.” Our ability to maintain a growth mindset is influenced by how the people around us talk about growth. According to Mary Murphy, Professor of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Indiana, performance management systems like stack ranking can undermine […]

Diversity “is”; you have to “do” inclusion.

The shift toward inclusion actually calls upon us to DO something. If focusing on inclusion actually induces us to ensure everyone’s inclusion (i.e. full participation in the belonging, learning, contributing and challenging activities of the society or organization they are joining), then putting more emphasis on inclusion than diversity could be broadly advantageous. After all, […]

“Psychological safety” may not be such a new concept after all;) Humiliation has never been a great leadership technique

“If you fall into the habit of getting angry and punishing your men, those who hear about it will not want to become your close retainers. Avoid humiliating them if they already have a sense of shame.” – Hojo Shigetoki (北条重時) in “The Letter to Nagatoki” (六波羅殿御家訓), circa 1240 AD Made sense in the 13th century; makes sense in […]


「持ちつ持たれつ」:互いに助けたり助けられたり。(from Kotobank) Transactional translations of this phrase might run something along the lines of “Give and take” or “You scratch my back; I’ll scratch yours.” Though we no doubt sometimes support each other in transactional (perhaps even selfish or collusive) ways, my own sense of the phrase 「持ちつ持たれつ」 is that in many cases it should […]

APGCCM: How do you invite your people to be drivers of sustainable high-performance?

The formula for higher performance AND enhanced well-being is: Agency Purpose Growth Connection Contribution Meaning How do we enable managers to become drivers of APGCCM as a core part of their roles? (Agency + Purpose + Growth) x (Connection + Contribution + Meaning) APGCCM for productivity  Putting in place mechanisms that bolster and balance “agency” […]

Accountability is built on a foundation of mutually-defined commitments

Mutual commitment trumps accountability. These days, we hear a lot about the need for accountability. What we don’t hear as much about is what lies at the foundation of accountability: mutually-defined commitments. Years ago, as an onsite OD consultant, I supported the head of an R&D division who often complained about how difficult it was […]

Proactive Management of Holistic Well-being x Unlimited Drive = Sustainable Peak Performance

Well-being has become a buzzword recently, following wellness, resilience, employee engagement, employee satisfaction, participative management, employee motivation and other attempts to encapsulate a magic formula that enables employees to feel like people (ends unto themselves) WHILE they are used as performance/production inputs (means to an end). While I’m skeptical of the utility of looking to […]