The Pomodoro Technique – Advanced Productivity (Part 2)

In “Are you a Maker or a Manager? – Advanced Productivity (Part 1)”, I wrote about the application of the Maker’s Schedule vs the Manager’s Schedule. In part one, I focused on some ideas for improving the way executives and business owners better apply themselves to their “maker” role. In this article, I’m turning my […]

Are you a Maker or a Manager? – Advanced Productivity (Part 1)

One of the podcasts I take the time to listen to somewhat regularly during my morning walks is The Tim Ferriss Show. Tim deconstructs world-class performers from eclectic areas (investing, sports, business, art, etc.) to extract tactics and tools his listeners could use to designing their life-style and work-style. In one of his recent episodes, Tim mentioned […]

Managing Your Household (Part 2)

We received a strong response to our recent post “Managing Your Household – Part 1”. The idea that to put the world in order, we must first put our family in order, seems to have struck a chord. In that article, I invited you to consider the following question: “What if you thought of your […]

Design Your Own C.I.A

One of the best ideas I think I’ve come up with as a result of my research on organizing and productivity for high performance is the need to create what I call your Core Information Architecture (C.I.A). It sounds quite technical but by the end of this post I hope you’ll agree it’s a simple […]

Adaptive Leadership vs Adapting

This week, I’m writing to you from Harvard University in Boston. I’m attending an intensive eight-day executive education program called “The Art and Practice of Leadership Development” between 8-15 May 2015. I’m part of a learning community of 70 peers (from almost as many countries and walks of life) focused on The Leadership Pipeline – […]

The Four Habitats

What I’d like you to do is consider that you are your ecosystem. If you think about yourself as an ecosystem, an ecosystem is comprised of habitats – the natural homes in which we live. What we need to be able to do is to be able to respond to changes in those habitats. The […]

Adapt or Perish

CEOs need to be equipped to lead their organisations in a way that allows people and systems to evolve by adapting both to internal and external changes facing their organisations. The only true source of sustainable and competitive advantage is the capacity to adapt. Adapting Think about the notion of change management; it really applies […]

The Art of the Brief (Part 2)

One of the challenges for creative and entrepreneurial executives is what to do with all their great ideas. SEE ALSO: The Art of The Brief (Part 1) in which I outline the concept of the Brief. You may have heard it said, “We get out of things what we put into them”. When it comes to […]

Farmer or Forester

Our approach to managing organisations is quite analytical – we think about boxes and flowcharts. To put this into the context of a farm; we take land, we clear that land and we make these nice little boxes into which we put our livestock. We do the same thing when we talk about customers, suppliers, […]

CEOs and Caterpillars

My original training was in biology. Since then I’ve worked in management and leadership roles as a consultant, as a CEO, as an entrepreneur / business owner. If you think about the fundamental intentions of both business and biology it’s initially to survive and then ultimately to thrive. Becoming a CEO Caterpillars are pretty slow […]

The CEO: Trapped Between Uncertainty and Ambiguity

We really need to create CEOs that are confident in confronting uncertainty. We need people that engage people in strategic dialogue. CEOs that get people talking about the future and are comfortable exploring the uncertainty of that territory. Leaders who are quite happy with the divergent phase that comes before the convergent phase of formulating […]

Mastering the Weekly Review

In Get Rhythm we explored the importance of developing rituals that help keep the beat in your business. In his book titled “Getting Things Done (GTD)”, author David Allen proposes a three-step “Weekly Review Process” comprised of: Get Clear Get Current Get Creative In our experience at nLIVEn of working with high performing executives and entrepreneurs, […]

Get Rhythm

I recently attended a Lynn Lounge event as a guest of Tivoli Hi-Fi , one of Australia’s leading specialist hi-fi retailers based in Hawthorn East, an inner suburb of Melbourne. Lynn is a Scottish company that has been a leader in the development of high fidelity speakers and stereo components for several decades. In essence, a […]

The Art of the Brief (Part 1)

When it comes to communicating a significant idea, planning a major project or preparing to collaborate on an important task, I would recommend you take the time to prepare a Brief. What is a Brief? A brief is a summary of facts, findings, arguments and objectives which are prepared to give its reader or receiver […]

Adapting to Change

Some executives thrive in times of change. Others fail. Is it lack of vision or strategy? Rarely. Sustained high performance demands consistent execution. In a volatile and uncertain world of escalating complexity and increasing ambiguity, we need dynamic people and enterprises that competently adapt to change. Download the full article here… The Story of Adapting […]

The CEO Survival Guide

Congratulations! You’ve finally landed the top job, started your own business, bought someone else’s business or grown a business to the size that you can now focus on being the CEO. The next challenge: How to thrive rather than merely survive as a CEO in the 21st century landscape of business. Some days, it sure […]

Managing Your Default Settings

It’s reassuring to know that when I turn on my PC each morning, it automatically runs its start-up scripts in the background; consistently loading my default settings for optimal performance. As people get older, they don’t necessarily wake up this way each morning. Several years ago, it occurred to me that I could design my […]

Breathing Life into Dead CEOs

The idea of breathing life into dead CEOs does not mean they arrive at our office on a stretcher or in a coffin. Typically, their vital signs are not great though: One of the signs we see are overweight individuals, which is partly because they are quite time-poor and working long hours. The accumulation of […]

Long Live the CEO

In my experience, we need CEOs to grow more quickly than their organisations. How do you ensure that you’re growing, evolving, learning and adapting to these changes faster than your organisation? If you’re going to provide leadership, you’ve got to stay out in front of both your team and the organisation you’re dealing with. It’s […]

The CEO is Dead

The principal idea behind the concept of “The CEO is Dead” refers to the traditional role of a CEO: the way they typically lead organisations has passed it’s used by date. We’re moving into the stage where ideas such as command and control no longer work – in terms of responding to the rapid rate […]