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Rhythm Blog | Accountable Leaders & Teams

by Patrick Thean and the Rhythm Team

Why You Need a Time Machine for Effective Goal Setting

Jessica Wishart Thu, Oct 10, 2019 @ 11:03 AM

If you want to set compelling and achievable goals for yourself, your teams and your company, drop everything and invent a time machine. OK—not literally, but metaphorical time travel is a key component of effective goal setting.

Why time travel? To paint a picture of success. Why is this important? Why do you need to know what success looks like?

In their classic book Switch: How to Change Things when Change is Hard, Chip and Dan Heath describe the importance of what they call “pointing to the destination” with a destination postcard. They argue you need “a vivid picture from the near-term future that shows what could be possible” to rally the troops behind your goal. Visualizing success in detail is motivating to the team and actually helps you achieve it.

Welcome to Charlotte!

Paige Wilcox Wed, Oct 9, 2019 @ 11:54 AM

We are thrilled to host our 5th Annual Breakthrough Conference once again in Charlotte, NC, this October 24th and 25th, at the Charlotte Marriott City Center. Charlotte is Rhythm Systems' home base, and we want you to enjoy it as much as we do. Here are some recommendations to enhance your stay once the conference is wrapped!

Food:

  1. Dine at 5Church, in walking distance of the Charlotte Marriott City Center, for sophisticated southern cuisine.

The Importance of Organizational Alignment and How to Achieve It

Ted Skinner Mon, Sep 30, 2019 @ 11:15 AM

Verne Harnish notes in his book Mastering the Rockefeller Habits that the difference between organizational vision and organizational alignment as drivers toward success is a whopping 99%. He demonstrates that vision = 1%, while team alignment = 99%.

Think about the power of that assertion for a moment. Why is it that organizational alignment is exponentially more important to success than vision?  The importance of organizational alignment, can't be understated - but how do you achieve it?  How can I increase the level of organizational alignment in my company culture?  What type of work structure allows you to achieve increasingly better business performance?  You need to get into a Rhythm of 3 Year Strategic Planning, Annual Planning, Quarterly Execution Planning and Weekly Team Meetings.

4 Steps to A Great Skip-Level Meeting and 17 Engaging Questions to Ask (Updated for 2019)

Ted Skinner Mon, Sep 30, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

What is a skip-level meeting?

As defined in an article by Jared Lewis, "In a skip-level meeting, upper-level management bypasses mid-level management to talk directly to non-managerial employees. Although there's not typically a special position known as a 'skip-level manager,' senior managers conducting these types of meetings are considered skip-level managers."  The manager meets with employees to try to better understand their team members, build trust in the organization and get a better sense of the work environment challenges facing your front line employees.  Skip level meetings for employees are just as important as they are for managers, and both should be well prepared prior to the "skip level meeting."  Done properly, the skip level meeting is an effective tool to improve communications across your organization. 

Job Scorecard vs. Job Description: What's the Difference in 2019? (Video)

Tiffany Chepul Mon, Sep 30, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

In recent consulting calls, Job Scorecards (sometimes referred to as employee scorecards) have been a hot topic. Many companies are looking for a way to provide more constant and balanced feedback and coaching to employees, instead of just an annual review.   The scorecard approach allows company managers to achieve their strategic objectives.

The truth is, traditional annual performance reviews can be riddled with anxiety. Many times employees perceive a connection to salary or a raise, which is stressful for everyone. The true value of a performance review - an opportunity for development and coaching - is often missed.  The role and goal clarity that the employee scorecard provides enables managers to be more involved in employee performance.

10 Tips for Topgrading Interviews: Your Key to Hiring Well

Chris Cosper Fri, Sep 27, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

Topgrading is a methodology of recruiting, interviewing, selecting and retaining top talent developed by Brad Smart and Geoff Smart designed to increase your likelihood of hiring and retaining A players. We’ve been recommending this method to Rhythm clients for many years.  We even use it ourselves, so we know firsthand the power of Topgrading. You can find a lot of great (and free) resources on their website.  When used in conjunction with Job Scorecards, an enhanced version of job descriptions, you can better attract and retain the A-Players you need to hit your growth goals.

Ownership and The Daily Huddle

Patrick Thean Fri, Sep 13, 2019 @ 11:02 AM

Mike, a long time customer, asked me recently how to revitalize his daily huddle. He shared how they have been doing it for years and have received great value in the past with their daily huddle. They are clear on the purpose of their daily huddle:

  • Sync up the team and get aligned
  • Help and support each other
  • Act on issues faster instead of waiting until the weekly meeting to find out about the issues

3 Better Email Habits to Improve Team Productivity

Jessica Wishart Thu, Sep 12, 2019 @ 01:22 PM

Effective communication is a key leadership trait and one of the 5 Cs of team accountability, and in today’s world, a lot of that communication happens over email. One report said in 2019, an average of 126 business emails is sent and received per person per day. That is a lot of email to process effectively.

You’re Fired: 5 Steps and a Glass of Wine

Barry Pruitt Wed, Sep 4, 2019 @ 02:24 PM

Like many great business learnings, it began with glass of wine. I had a business manager named Jim who was experiencing employee problems, sloppy results and missed deadlines.

As we sipped our wine, I realized that there was a pattern. This pattern has proven true in my consulting with great companies in 20 countries and across 4 continents.

Strategic vs. Tactical Leadership: Which Management Style Are You?

Cathy McCullough Fri, Aug 30, 2019 @ 12:00 PM

We read a lot these days about strategic leadership and tactical leadership (as we should). Leaders find themselves up against a multitude of scenarios and situations, all of which they’re supposed to magically handle in the right way with the right methods for each situation. When you study leadership, you quickly discover the massive complexity that surrounds it. So let’s take just one slice of strategic vs tactical leadership and dissect it for the purpose of your own reflective thinking about what kind of leader you tend to be (and the pros/cons that surround these tendencies). 

The slice of leadership we’ll look at is the tactical leader vs. the strategic leader. Both are needed, but when you’re trying to lead a team (or teams) of people toward a common endpoint and/or if you’re trying to grow a company, understanding the differences between these two management styles is imperative. Without a sense of understanding around your own leadership tendencies, you can’t move the needle on much of anything let alone work towards achieving a strategic plan or objective.