Performance Reviews? Nah!

Who likes performance reviews?

I’d venture to say performance review time is stressful for pretty much everyone, reviewer and reviewee alike. Since it’s been generally accepted that these reviews are key to performance measurement and improvement, we’ve done them. Most of the time we haven’t thought a lot about alternatives.

Here’s a lady with a different idea. Ditch performance reviews and conduct monthly “check-ins”. In these check-ins she and her managers ask 3 questions. I’ll let Jessica Rovello, co-founder of Arkadium, explain what those questions are in this 64-second video.

They’re pretty effective questions, and Jessica reports that performance improves as a result of asking them.

After all, performance measurement should improve performance – right? I’m pretty sure morale improves as well, and that’s always a good thing.

Arkadium is a privately held company, so no financial results are available. Reviewing their website, I see that Jessica and her husband are very dedicated to their team. The company appears to be flourishing and continuing to attract rave reviews. Their methods seem to be bearing fruit.

Enjoy Jessica’s quick look at Arkadium’s alternative to performance reviews.

You Become What You Think About!

Your Potential is in Your Hands…and in Your Mind!

So often I encounter someone’s opinion that they are the way they are permanently. That’s a pretty prevalent idea among people.

  • I’m not good at math
  • I can’t work with technologyhold you back
  • I’m not good at selling
  • Networking with other people scares me.

These are all examples of “mindsets” that people think are fixed.

Changing these ingrained ideas is simple. However it’s not easy.

For me the toughest one to change has been, “I’m not a good salesman”. Gradually, with training and education, I’m learning to be a better salesman. Not expert by any means yet, but improving. Having held this self-image all my life, changing it is one of the hardest things I’ve undertaken.

Much of the training I’m doing is with Eric Lofholm, regarded by many as one of the top sales trainers in the world.. Eric also started his career as a poor salesman, Early in his career he met Dr. Donald Moine, whom he regards as the best sales trainer in the world. Dr. Moine considers Eric his all-time best student. Quite a symbiotic relationship!

With that introduction, I offer you a replay of a webinar that these two guys did together in May. Of course it talks about effective ideas in selling. More important though is the ideas they discuss about changing mindset. Mindset is the greatest factor in the success you achieve in sales, in math, in customer service etc.

This webinar is a little over an hour long. That’s much longer than most of the material I link to in these messages. I’ll repeat that I’m convinced that mindset is the most important factor in your success. With that mindset, this is arguably one of the most valuable time investments you can make in yourself..

One of the things I appreciate most about Eric is his prolific offering of material at no cost. Unlike many people who offer free content, there’s real meat in Eric’s free programs. His daily 15-minute motivational call is a prime example. From that page you can access many of his other programs. I urge you to check it out. The mindset webinar I mentioned before was attached to one of the replays of these daily calls. Replays of the daily calls are available here.

Some key takeaways from the mindset webinar:

  • You must be aware of what your mindset is in an area where you want to improve.
  • To change a mindset, change some routine around it. We develop patterns, which become habits, which direct us to act in certain ways on autopilot. When you change one thing in your routine, it makes you think in new ways. We resist change, even when it’s beneficial.
  • Your mindset determines the quality of the work you do and how much money you’ll make. Also the quality and quantity of your relationships.
  • Your mindset can spur you on to greater success, or it can hold you back. Which is it doing for you?
  • You can re-create a success by remembering it in exquisite vivid detail – what you were wearing, what you ate, people’s reactions to you. This is a great technique for learning to repeat that success.
  • Changing one single, simple mindset can change your whole world. Don’t try to change everything. Pick something you consider a high priority and work on that single change. Eric offers many suggestions for areas of sales you may want to decide to change.

Once more, just to be sure you get the full import of all this:

Change Your Mindset – Change Your Life!

Disclosure: If your click on any of these links leads to your partnering with Eric on something you pay him for, I’ll receive an affiliate commission. He offers great value in his many free resources. Of course, he’d love to work with you as a coach as well.


If you find Eric’s work helpful you may want to join his affiliate program.

Think, and Grow Rich!

Eric Lofholm
According to Napoleon Hill, he met Andrew Carnegie in 1908. Hill relates that he went to work for Carnegie, who gave him an unusual assignment.


He was to research and report on the work of the most prominent business men of the time. The idea, of course, was to create a guide for doing business successfully. While he claimed to have interviewed many of them, many historians find no evidence of such meetings.
Napoleon Hill Quote

There’s a great deal of controversy around Hill’s claims of accomplishments and interviews. This Wikipedia account outlines many of his achievements…and some of his clouded history.

Despite all the controversy, it seems undisputed that Napoleon Hill wrote the books he’s widely credited with. His two most famous works are The Law of Success (1928) and Think and Grow Rich (1937). These books outline useful principles for success in business. As we’ve discussed before, many business ideas are good guides in personal life as well.

The premise of virtually all Hill’s work is that, with the proper mental focus, success is pretty much guaranteed.

Here’s an invitation. For well over a year I’ve been listening to a daily 15-minute motivational call by sales coach Eric Lofholm. Throughout July Eric is talking each day about one of Napoleon Hill’s principles. All this great advice is available at no charge here.

Eric has been doing this call for several years, and has committed to continuing it throughout his career. His stated intention is to continue his career until his 76th birthday in 2046. Here are instructions on how to join the call. If you miss any of the calls, including the Napoleon Hill discussion, this link will get you the recordings.

Disclosure: If your click on any of these links leads to your doing a paid program with Eric, I’ll receive an affiliate commission. He offers great value in his many free resources. Of course, he’d love to work with you as a coach as well.
Napoleon Hill’s advice provides great guidance to your business success. I hope you’ll give Eric a listen as he describes Hill’s work.

Think Business is Cut-Throat?

Do it the Decent Way

Do you believe in angels? How would you like to employ “better angels” in your business?

Over the weekend, I read Win with Decency, a short book by Douglass and Lisa-Marie Hatcher.

Their premise is that you do business best by positive treatment of every individual and organization the business comes in contact with. This would include:

  • Employees.
  • Customers and clients.
  • Suppliers.
  • Contractors.
  • Service providers.
  • Your community.
  • Shareholders.
  • The “man on the street” – everyone else you encounter, however casually.

You may wonder at my listing employees above customers and clients. Aren’t customers and clients a vital concern of every business? Yes, absolutely! However, your employees will treat your customers and clients only as well as you treat them.

The Hatchers identify five human qualities which best accomplish this:

  • Humility
  • Empathy
  • Vulnerability
  • Gratitude
  • Generosity

In the first five chapters, each discussing one of these qualities, they

  1. Define the quality.
  2. Tie the quality to business storytelling. (The Hatchers use business story-telling extensively in their coaching business.)
  3. Make the business case.
  4. Show you at least one way you can transform the quality into an applicable skill.
  5. Give you examples of who’s using the skill for better business. An example company they cite in Chapter 5 (generosity) is Chobani Yogurt. We discussed Chobani here about a year ago..

In Chapter 6, they wrap these concepts together to Win with Decency in a very human way. In this chapter they refer to Carol Dweck’s great work on fixed and growth mindsets, which we discussed here a few weeks ago.

Consider using these ideas to do better business. Of course, you’ll also foster better personal relationships with everyone involved.

Are You Hiring Remote Workers?

Based on an article originally published June 15, 2020.

These days many employers are searching for candidates to work remotely.

How confident do you feel about hiring people to work from home? Many considerations for any hiring apply for remote workers. However, some qualities stand out for special attention here. Minda Zetlin has some suggestions for picking the best candidates for a “work from home” role.

She makes a very important distinction. It’s easy to confuse a “people-pleaser” with an optimist.

Of course, you want to avoid pessimists as remote workers. Probably for all workers. You need people with a positive attitude and the ability to “self-start”.Especially so when they must work with little direct supervision.

Be thorough in probing someone who sounds positive and gives you answers that you like to your questions. Such a person might be very intuitive about what you like to hear, so they give you the “right” answers. Does he or she indeed have a positive attitude? You need to dig a little deeper. Minda suggests some clues as to the things you’ll hear from a true optimist. And some things a people-pleaser might say that can tip you off.

When you’re searching for remote workers, I hope you find Minda’s suggestions helpful. You want an optimist. A people-pleaser might go off in a wrong direction without your realizing it.

Stay focused. Stay informed, but skip the “hype”. Be healthy. Be of good cheer.

Simply Speaking Opens Up a Path


JP Morgan, from Santa Monica, CA: “Hawaii, here we come”.

Some months ago, in one of Eric Lofholm’s daily 15 minute podcasts, I was introduced to JP Morgan. JP has a unique approach to people and relationships in life and business. Here, he shares his wife’s comment, and how it’s snowballing into a big move.

As I’ve gotten to know JP I’ve found him to have clearer mindset ideas than almost anyone I know. I’ve offered some of them before.

In the short talk I’m pointing you to today, JP starts off discussing metaphors. How they can have huge impacts in our lives. How they can transform our reality. How they can drive action.

Recently, JP and his wife had some discussion about their life plans. She mentioned that living in Hawaii was a dream of hers. They discussed the idea between them. Then they began mentioning it to friends and associates.

Soon they began to hear from people who knew others in Hawaii, or had other connections there. Their speaking, leading to the reaction of others, was opening up a clear path to Hawaii. The path seems to unfold from their destination to their feet. Their speaking seems to, in effect, throw out a line with a hook, The hook catches in the future, and things begin to align. A path becomes clearer…and then cleare
r.
Throw another line…the links become stronger. The path becomes clearer. The pull intensifies. Much of this happens just as the result of the ideas we speak.

Listen to JP’s 4-minute description of this process and how it might work for you.

Anti-CEO Playbook Challenges 3 Business “Rules”

Based on an article originally published July 24, 2019

We’ve all heard stories of impoverished immigrants who came to the U. S. and prospered through hard work and perseverance.  

Sometimes unique business ideas have been part of the recipe as well. Here’s an example of that. 

Jessica Stillman relates a great story of a Turkish sheep farmer who came to the U.S. about 20 years ago.  

Hamdi Ulukaya came from a family of yogurt makers. He saw an ad for a yogurt factory for sale cheap. He borrowed money and bought it just as the aging owner had ordered it to be closed. 

Ulukaya had some ideas that he terms the “Anti-CEO Playbook”. He brings his concepts to life in a 17-minute TED talk which is linked in Stillman’s article. I think the entire saga is well worth listening to.  

Strapped for time and want to invest less of it in this story?  You can start the video at the 6:30 time and hear the most inspiring part of the story. For those who opt for that, I’ll summarize the “preamble” a little further along.  

He debunks a few ideas that have become accepted business advice:

  • Maximize stockholder value? How about the employees?
  • CEO responsible to the Board? How about the customers?
  • Incentives from the community? He sees it the other way around.

He’s all about cutting out middlemen and getting incentives and gratitude in the right place. 

The following sets the stage for the balance of Ulukaya’s talk in case you choose to start in the middle. 

The yogurt plant was on a dead-end road and was in terrible run-down condition. The 55 employees were still there, working only to shut the place down. Ulukaya detected a spirit among the employees that energized him. He describes the culture of the company as a “time machine”. 

He kept four of the key people and said to them, “First thing we’re going to do is go the local Ace Hardware store and buy some paint. We’ll paint the outside walls white.”  

Of course the employees wondered at this priority, but complied. 

That’s where the story of Chobani Yogurt gets interesting. Listen, as Paul Harvey used to say, to “the rest of the story”. Start at the 6:30 interval in the TED talk video at the end of the article