“The ability to learn is the most important quality a leader can have.” — Padmasree Warrior

Do you feel the pressure of needing to do more and faster?

Some days, even weeks, do you feel like you are being flung from one fire to the next and are more like the pinball than the flippers?

A rare few leaders have mastered the mindset and skills to control their work and their speed to achieve great things, including the work-life balance they desire. More than that, they make those around them better. These leaders lead from start to finish and look like the world-class marathoners who win and look as if they could do another marathon right that moment.

For the last thirty years, Julia Mullaney and I have been debating, researching, discovering, and applying the X-Factors that give those leaders the exceptional difference above others. A quick summary of those factors is here.

  • Make commitments they keep or beat.  There is magic these leaders have. Everyone trusts them to deliver what they say they will deliver. They lead with a calm, get-it-done attitude. This contrasts dramatically with projects which constantly go from one crisis to the next.
  • Deliver solutions that work.  These leaders have command of effective quality methods that ensure they deliver solutions that work. It is critical to have a deep understanding of multiple methods in order to ensure that quality is a driving force in the development of solutions.  With this knowledge, these leaders know which methods to apply in each situation to get to high-quality solutions with speed.
  • Work on the right products at the right time. Lots of leaders are rushing, they might even look fast, but they often don’t have an answer to the question of “Where are you rushing to?” The people with this X-Factor know how to focus the best speed to the most important value. They lead people in designing solutions to drive value that scales rapidly over time. They do not tolerate technical debt that slows teams down.
  • Make those around them better. These leaders relentlessly work to create fun and productive work environments. More than that, they help make their stakeholders and clients better at what they do. They and their teams are inspiring role models to the organizations around them. 

These exceptional factors (X-Factors) do not happen by birthright or by accident.  These leaders made a choice that made them stand out from the crowd.  They choose to master these skills to provide the best value to the world,

We have developed an offering that enables people to make that exceptional choice to master these X-Factors.  Check out a description of the offering by clicking here.

I would love to talk about more with you.  
Write to me at [email protected], and we will set up a time.

Yours in the calm pursuit of excellence,


Alan Willett

Photo by RUN 4 FFWPU from Pexels

You may also like:

Endurance Is Not Always a Virtue

I have seen leaders show great endurance in leading marathon projects. They are putting in marathon hours. The sweat sheen on them and their teams is obvious, even heroic.

Do You Need a Win?

A client wrote to me recently with a note that said simply “I need a win.” Have you been there, where it feels like you have faced a sudden losing streak and quite simply there is a need for a win? I have. I expect Elon Musk is looking for one with Tesla.

The Reader’s Edge

The exceptional leaders are voracious consumers of information. They listen to audio books, they read books, they seek out others to hear their stories. The things they read spans multiple genres, time periods, and cultures.

ANNIVERSARIES ARE IMPORTANT MARKERS

"Ritual is important to us as human beings. It ties us to our traditions and our histories." — Miller Williams, Poet My wife and I just celebrated our 30th wedding anniversary. Even though real work of building a life together happens in the minutes and hours between...

LEADERSHIP ON FATHER’S DAY

"Welcome to Sherwood!" — Robin Hood Father's Day was a delight for me. My family treated me a number of fun things. I was served breakfast in a hammock. I was treated to a delicious cold milkshake at a local ice-cream shop. My daughter and I have a plan to go buy some...

SUDS MAY SPILL, BEER SHOULD NOT

"I have never had to face anything that could overwhelm the native optimism and stubborn perseverance I was blessed with. " — Sonia Sotomayor One of my best clients and I were enjoying the start of our day at a local coffee cafe. We covered a range of topics and one...

PERSISTENCE, PREY, AND IDEAS

"Language is the means of getting an idea from my brain into yours without surgery. " — Mark Amidon The Washington DC zoo has this very interesting roulette-style wheel located just past the cheetah exhibit. You spin the wheel to find out if you caught your prey, your...

ANTICIPATE INFLECTION POINTS

"A strategic inflection point is a time in the life of a business when its fundamentals are about to change. that change can mean an opportunity to rise to new heights. But it may just as likely signal the beginning of the end." — Andrew Grover There are a wave of...

PATIENCE, PASSION, PERSISTENCE, PROGRESS

"Even though it is not always easy… being a planetary scientist is one of the coolest jobs on the planet!" — Elizabeth (Zibi) Turtle   Imagine exploring Titan! And to be clear, I am not referring to the planet Titan of Thanos (Avengers), I am referring to a...

Making the Leap

Paradigm leaps take need, courage, and sweat. You will notice a different look and feel to the newsletter this week. Earlier this year, I became unsatisfied with a few key things and decided to make some changes.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This