Roy's Blog: December 2015

December 28, 2015

How can you reach beyond good and great to be a standout leader?

Much has been written on leadership and what it takes to be competent in the craft.

Contemporary writing, however, doesn’t differentiate between the various levels of leadership.

Leadership instruction promulgates similar “formulae” to enhance one’s leadership capabilities. It’s pretty basic stuff. And it really doesn’t teach much to someone who wants to take their game to another level.

It’s time we recognize that there are different levels of leadership and enable individuals to understand what it takes to move up from one level to the next.

Standout leader

There are, in my experience, 3 classes of leaders: “good”, “great” and “stand-out”.

The good leaders practice accepted leadership principles satisfactorily; for example, they may be acceptable communicators and they delegate according to the norms. The great excel at performing one or two principles; they may be beyond competent, for example, at creating strategy for their organization.

The stand-out, on the other hand, create new principles based on what it will take for their organizations to thrive and survive an uncertain future. They introduce notions like “to be successful we need to do lots of imperfect stuff fast”, and “fail fast”. The stand-out do not accept today’s norms; they create new ones.

The good leader manages the momentum of their business; the great builds momentum and accelerates progress; the standout disrupt the momentum of their business to take it in a different direction. The stand-out intervenes on themselves; the good and the great are not so inclined.

The good leaders identify best practices to emulate; the great copy best practices fast and furiously; the stand-out don’t copy; they create a unique way forward. They look at best in class as the model to break away and be different from.

The good delegate and hold people accountable; the great delegate and coach people to be the best they can be; the stand-out refuse to delegate tasks that require their own fingerprints. They take personal ownership in such matters as managing the customer moment. They recognize the limits of delegation.

The good communicate the strategy of the organization using all broadcast channels available; the great broadcast and personally engage in face-to-face meetings and Q&A sessions; the stand-out ensure that detailed explanation of the strategy is provided to each function in the organization so people can “see” specifically what they need to do differently.

The good have a generalist brand and are not known for any particular trait. The great have strength typically in strategy development. The standout brand centers on serving people; asking “How can I help?”


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 12.28.15 at 04:25 am by Roy Osing
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December 21, 2015

What happens when you really tell the truth about service?

Most businesses these days want their customers to score them on the service they have provided.

In fact some even go to the extent of advising you that you will be receiving a survey to complete and then asking that you give them the best score! This has happened to me several times from various organizations.

Being a contrarian, I don’t conform and they regret asking.

Others think that good ratings are based on INTENT.

Some customer service people expect a good mark simply because their intent was to provide excellent service even though it wasn’t delivered. My web site problem wasn’t solved but the consultant was pleasant and did her best; ergo she expects an excellent rating. My car repair wasn’t done properly but the service person served me in exemplary fashion and expects a good mark.

Again, I disappoint them by rating the service provided to me by the organization as unsatisfactory.

The ONLY way for any individual to get a good mark is to deliver what was promised in a way that delights. Fix the car and provide an amazing experience for the customer while doing it and THEN you get an excellent rating.

Of course the service person says they can’t control what the mechanics do; the web consultant says they aren’t responsible for deciding on what changes are made to the blog posting algorithm.

They are right of course but it’s not my problem!

They need to ensure that the front end intent is delivered by the back end result.

OR, change the front end intent to match the capabilities of the back end; promise what you can deliver.

As a customer, it is our responsibility to teach business about service. Don’t let them off the hook by giving a high rating to a service rep when the organization didn’t deliver what you asked for.

Teach them a lesson.

Rate them poorly; tell them why; hope they can improve.

If they don’t, go elsewhere.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 12.21.15 at 04:59 am by Roy Osing
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December 14, 2015

Are strengths the things that make awesome leaders?

They address the lowest level requirements of the leadership job.

Without the basics you have ZERO chance to lead; with them you’re guaranteed nothing and will likely be like every other leader out there.

My eyes glaze over when some individuals describe their strengths. I hear product management, SEO, finance, team building and it goes on and on.

They all say the same thing. They’re clones of one another.

Strengths that are cited are merely adequacies if the herd promulgates them.

Let’s start asking “How are you different from everyone else?”

“What have you done that shows a contrarian attitude?”

“Where have you gone in the opposite direction to the crowd?”

“Tell me a story about your divergence not conformance.”

Brilliant leadership is never achieved by being strong.

It’s realized by being different.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 12.14.15 at 04:22 am by Roy Osing
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December 7, 2015

If you’re in the herd, this is the only way out

If you’re not DiFFERENT you’re dead (or soon will be).

Simply stating the facts.

Where is Nortel? Blockbuster? Radio Shack? Blackberry? Woolworth?

They have either gone out of business or are in the process of going there. They are victims of irrelevance.

They stopped creating value that their customers viewed as unique.

They fell into the herd and became bland and indistinguishable.

Too many organizations think that “being number 1”, “the top” or “the best” is the way to survive in a world where hungry competitors attack.


Aspirations and helium-filled competitive claims just don’t cut it.

People want to know why SPECIFICALLY why they should do business with you and not your competitors.

The ONLY Statement is your ONLY defence to separate yourself from others who are wallowing in comparatives - we’re better than - or superlatives - we’re the best - to try and gain appeal.

The ONLY Statement is binary: you either ARE or ARE NOT what you claim. It can be seen; it can be measured.

But it doesn’t have to be achieved overnight. In fact it can be a lifelong journey of progress.  Get it 50-60% right, start executing and learn as you go what you need to do to make it “more true”.

The point is to begin changing behaviours in your organization towards your claim of uniqueness NOW.

“We are the ONLY team that provides safety solutions that go beyond what customers ask to help build their business.”

THIS you can explain in clear granular terms.

No helium in this balloon.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series




  • Posted 12.7.15 at 04:02 am by Roy Osing
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