Reaching the Peak of Your Potential (part 2)

Reaching the Peak of Your Potential (part 2)
by Darren Hardy

Last week we started a journey together through Maslow’s 8-Ways to Self-Actualize with my supplemented editorial and action steps to help you actually actualize Maslow’s principles.

We traversed through the first 4-steps so far. Many of your realizations and mental breakthroughs mentioned in the comments were very inspiring. Just reading them made me want to step up my game last week. Thank you!

This week we will complete the journey with steps 5 – 8. Imagine this as your climb of Mount Everest (the peak of your potential) and you have made it all the way to Camp IV (you’ve mastered Maslow’s steps 1 – 4). Now you have what is called “The Final Push” left to go to “summit” the mountain. Well, Maslow’s steps 5 – 8 are your Final Push. Let’s go!
Continue reading Reaching the Peak of Your Potential (part 2)

Productivity Management: The Chirpy Cheerleader

Productivity Management: The Chirpy Cheerleader
Laura Stack, CSP

“Save the cheerleader, save the world.” – An often-repeated phrase on the NBC-TV series Heroes.

“In the early days, I didn’t have the money to pay decent salaries, so I didn’t get good people. I got nice people, but I didn’t get good employees.” – Louise Hay, self-help author

Recently, I introduced you to my Productivity Management Matrix, a quick way of categorizing your team members that compares an individual’s competence with their level of work engagement. When constructing the matrix, I realized that workers tend to fall into four basic types, which I call Campers, Cheerleaders, Defectors, and Productives.

Last time, I described Campers: the low-performance, low-engagement chair-huggers who come to work for one reason and one reason only: to get a paycheck. This time, I’ll take a look at Cheerleaders, who bring together a happy, high level of engagement with a complete inability to produce.
Continue reading Productivity Management: The Chirpy Cheerleader

Analyzing the Small-Business Tax Hysteria

Analyzing the Small-Business Tax Hysteria
Jay Goltz

Last week, Senate Democrats decided, at least for the moment, not to pursue the Obama administration’s plan to let the Bush tax cuts expire for those in the top tax brackets. Most Democrats supported the plan. Most, if not all, Republicans opposed it, arguing primarily that increasing taxes on the wealthiest Americans would be devastating to small businesses.

First of all, it’s true, as many articles on the topic point out, that most small businesses will not be affected if we let the tax cut expire for the top 2 percent of wage earners. That said, those businesses it does affect will be, by definition, the most successful small businesses and the ones most likely to be in a position to hire new employees.
Continue reading Analyzing the Small-Business Tax Hysteria

What’s Your Favorite Job Interview Question?

What’s Your Favorite Job Interview Question?
Jay Goltz

Over at AOL Small Business, Rod Kurtz recently asked his board of directors what questions they like to ask prospective employees. The answers were interesting and got me thinking. Here are some of mine:

Tell me the most stressful situation you experienced at your last job with a customer.

The answer often gives me a sense of how people cope with difficult situations. It can reveal whether they speak honestly about their own actions, whether they learn lessons and what their attitudes are toward customers.
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Reaching Your Highest Human Potential. Okay… but how?

Reaching Your Highest Human Potential. Okay… but how?
by Darren Hardy

Throughout human history, reaching one’s potential has been the grand objective of life.

The most articulated value in ancient Greek culture was areté [ahr-i-tey]. Translated as “excellence” or “virtue,” the word actually means something closer to “being the best you can be,” or “reaching your highest human potential.”

This notion of excellence was ultimately bound up with the fulfillment of purpose or function: the act of living up to one’s full potential.

Areté in ancient Greek culture was courage and strength in the face of adversity and it was to what all people aspired.

In Homer’s poems, aretéis frequently associated with bravery, but more often with effectiveness. The man or woman of areté is a person of the highest effectiveness; they use all their faculties: strength, bravery and wit to achieve real results.
Continue reading Reaching Your Highest Human Potential. Okay… but how?

Product Lifecycle 2.0 and the Era of Instant Obsolescence

Product Lifecycle 2.0 and the Era of Instant Obsolescence
Jim Carroll

This graph represents the model of product life cycles as taught in business schools for the last, oh, I don’t know, 100 years?

Companies would innovate, and introduce a new product. If it succeeded, they would experience growth. At some point, sales would peak. The product would then tend to become obsolete or overtaken by competitors, and sales would decline.

What a quaint model. Too bad it bears no resemblance to todays’ reality. Many industries are now finding that product obsolescence now occurs during the growth stage; in the hi-tech industry, the “decline” phase caused by instant obsolescence can even occur during the introduction,

Back in June, I was the opening speaker for the Consumer Electronics Association CEO Summit in Ojai, California, and spoke to this trend. At the time, Lenovo had just pulled the plug on a pad-like product, even before it was released, because it was obvious that its limited feature set had already made it irrelevant and obsolete in a very fast paced market.

The reality of today’s market is that of instant obsolescence, and if you want to master innovation, you need to think about how your own product life cycle is changing.

Here’s a video take that is worth watching on the trend:

Productivity Management: Dealing with the Camper

Productivity Management: Dealing with the Camper
Laura Stack, CSP

“Since my last report, he has reached rock bottom and has started to dig.” – Anonymous report from an employee evaluation (possibly apocryphal)

“American business long ago gave up on demanding that prospective employees be honest and hardworking. It has even stopped hoping for employees who are educated enough that they can tell the difference between the men’s room and the women’s room without having little pictures on the doors.” – Dave Barry, humorist

In September’s newsletter, I introduced you to a new idea: the concept of group productivity management, based on the six Productivity Keys I outlined in my most recent book, SuperCompetent.

Now, I created SuperCompetent for those individuals who want to raise their personal productivity to the maximum possible level; so as written, it doesn’t really apply to group management. But not long after John Wiley and Sons released SuperCompetent, a client asked me how it all applied to managing people…and I thought that was a very good question. After a little thought, I came up with this matrix, which compares competence with employee engagement-one of the most important concepts going around management circles these days.
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Putting the PERSON in Personal Branding

Putting the PERSON in Personal Branding
Libby Gill

I am a big proponent of PERSON…AL branding. That means bring the PERSON you are to the forefront of your brand. That sounds like it would be easy, right? But it really isn’t. Begin this exercise in identifying your personal brand by asking yourself one question: Do you know what vibe you’re putting out to the world?

Here’s one GREAT example from my brand coaching experience. I just told a coaching client to stop being Eeyore and start being Tigger. She laughed, but she got it. In a world of challenges and a tough economy, she was very focused on the hardships around her.
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Productivity Management from a SuperCompetent Perspective

Productivity Management from a SuperCompetent Perspective
Laura Stack, CSP

As you probably know, John Wiley and Sons released my latest book, SuperCompetent: The Six Keys to Perform at Your Productive Best, this past August 9. Like my previous books, SuperCompetent addresses productivity from an individual viewpoint, in this case describing how the reader can achieve career success by applying six specific productivity keys in the workplace.

Within days of its release, a client asked me how SuperCompetent applies to managing people, not just individual productivity. In other words, how does the Six Keys philosophy work in a team environment? This set me to thinking, especially when I considered the issue of employee engagement (last month’s newsletter article), and how that factor impacts productivity.

Formulating the Matrix
Because engagement is a managerial concern more than it is personal one, I didn’t address it specifically in SuperCompetent. However, I believe that it does apply to all six of my productivity keys to one extent or another. Attitude—that is, the intensity of an employee’s motivation, drive, and proactiveness—is clearly the most pertinent of the Six Keys, because attitude is nearly synonymous with engagement.
Continue reading Productivity Management from a SuperCompetent Perspective

Wrestling With “The Donald”

Wrestling With “The Donald”
by Darren Hardy

No, not WWF McMahon style.

This past Sunday our good friends at ACN asked if I would come out to their convention and interview Donald Trump live on stage in front of their 20,000 reps.

At SUCCESS we are dedicated to supporting entrepreneurship. We support many companies who operate with integrity, promote hope and invest in helping their people personally develop and succeed, in addition to ACN.

Donald has a reputation of being a tad bit capricious in his commentary and particularly rough on interviewers. So I was ready, I had my knives sharpened in case he started throwing down. He didn’t. In fact, he was really a sweetheart of a guy.

I was asked afterward what surprised me most about the interview. I shouldn’t be surprised anymore, as every time I interview an extraordinary superachiever I walk away with the same realization. There really isn’t anything that extraordinary about them.

What I mean is their answers to all the probing success questions are usually the same, simple and not extraordinary.

What is extraordinary is that they actually DO the simple principles of success-relentlessly, passionately and consistently. And unfortunately that IS extraordinary.

Here are some of Trump’s answers to my questions (These are not direct quotes, as I am pulling from memory on the plane flying back):

Most important advice to a new entrepreneur?
Trump: Be ready to work-hard and long.

Advice to leaders who lead large groups of people?
Trump: Be good to your people. Genuinely care for your people. Help them succeed.

When you were a billion dollars in debt and everyone wrote you off as done for, how did you handle it, what did you do?
Trump: I didn’t do anything any different. I kept working hard. I didn’t listen to other people’s opinion of me. I just kept working hard. I went to a dinner I didn’t want to go to and made a relationship that turned it all around for me in a single day. If I hadn’t continued to push myself to do what I didn’t want to do, I probably wouldn’t be on this stage today. My editorializing: No matter how down you are, you are always one meeting, chance encounter or circumstance away from a complete turnaround. Just keep moving forward and working hard.

Mindset, approach to business?
Trump: I approach problems, negotiations, potential deals with a positive mindset. See what’s possible, not what’s negative. At the same time don’t just walk around in positive la-la land. You have to always protect the downside. There is a time to think negative so you can protect yourself and the potential downside, but approach life and every situation with a general positive attitude and a positive expectation.

Advice you recently gave to 10-year-old CEO Joey McGuire?
1. Stay in school. 2. Work hard. 3. Never give up. 4. Never, never, never ever give up.

Wow. So to make several billion dollars, this the formula:

1. Love what you do (was a given based on the audience he was talking to).
2. Work hard.
3. Don’t listen to other people’s opinion of you.
4. Keep working hard even when you don’t want to.
5. Love and care for your people.
6. Never, never, never ever give up.

That’s it. And I am not kidding, that is it. Simple isn’t it?

And this is generally the same answer I get no matter what superachiever or billionaire I interview. That’s a clue. Well, more than a clue-it’s the whole mystery solved.

The difference between you and The Donald is actually DOING the above principles-relentlessly, passionately and consistently.


Content republished with permission from Darren Hardy, Publisher of SUCCESS magazine. For more great insights, tips and strategies on success and achievement go to More about Darren Hardy can be found at: