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"Stop winning so much." What?

| August 19, 2014

by Jim Bruce

Today’s Tuesday Reading is actually a short video “’Stop winning so much.’ What?” by Marshall Goldsmith.  Goldsmith is a widely known author – What Got You Hear, Won’t Get You There – and executive coach.

He begins this video by recalling a lesson he learned from Peter Drucker, perhaps the world’s authority on management.  In one of their conversations, Drucker suggested that while a lot of time is spent on helping leaders learn what to do, we do not spend enough time teaching leaders what to stop.  Goldsmith notes that there are a number of reasons for this:  Leaders need to focus on demonstrating commitment to positive action.  Leaders must begin to listen more carefully.  Etc.  He also notes that we get credit and recognition for doing something good and rarely for ceasing to do something bad.

As a result of this conversation with Drucker, Goldsmith developed a list of behaviors that leaders need to stop doing.  First on the list, and the subject of this video, is Stop winning too much.  Goldsmith sees “winning too much” as the number one problem of successful leaders.  Successful leaders want to win when it’s important, meaningful, and critical.  And, they want to win when it’s trivial and not worth it because that’s just the way they are.

Goldsmith’s point is that sometimes the cost of winning is too high, particularly in terms of broken relationships, that it’s not worth it.  So, this week, when you’re in the mode of winning or succeeding at any cost, stop and ask, what am I winning here.  Is it worth the cost?  And, if it isn,t, STOP!  

Have a great week.  .  .    jim