The Success Delusion — Why It Can Be So Hard for Successful Leaders to Change

| October 21, 2008

by Jim Bruce

Today’s reading is “The Success Delusion — Why It Can Be So Hard for Successful Leaders to Change” from the Marshall Goldsmith Library.  Goldsmith’s thesis is straightforward:  The more successful we become, the more positive reinforcement we get, the more difficult it will be for us to make the changes we need to make to continue to be successful.

He has three recommendations for continuing to achieve positive change:

1.  Get in the habit of asking the key people in your life how you can improve.  He says “Recruit them in helping you get from where you are (which can be a pretty great place) to where you want to be (which can be even better).”

2.  Face the reality that you are only going to change what you choose to change — and that the motivation and commitment to change has to come from inside you.

3.  Watch out for over-commitment.  Keep the change process positive, simple, focused, and fast.  Goldsmith suggests that leaders, on a continuing basis, focus on one key behavior that they want to change and work at getting better at that.

Though that paper is long, it is worth taking the time and is an easy read on a very important subject.


Have a great week.  .  .  .  .     jim




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