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"It's tough to make predictions, especially about the future." Yogi Berra

One session today focused on strategic leaders, and key points they all encompass.

One definition of a strategic leader might be: A person who has the insight or ability to move employees/company from where they are to where they need to be.

1. Manage your horizons Focus on long-term goals ... and stay out of the weeds • Avoid micromanaging (helping out too much can distract you from your real job) • Use visual reminders to stay on goals. (Use things like whiteboards, binders with spreadsheets, project rooms)

2. Developing vs. Doing It's not about your performance, it's about theirs. Your success as a leader or manager is completely dependent on theirs. A few key questions to ask: • What is your staff turnover rate? • Do you hire people more talented than you? • What role does loyalty play on your staff?

3. Where is your thinking focused? Or, what kind of relationship do you want to have with your audience? What are we doing as leaders to instill this with staff? • Inside out thinking is focused on our capabilities -- what we do well. • Outside in thinking is focused on what our audience needs from us. • We don't learn that by asking them, we learn that by living with them. (Some effective companies do that by having their senior managers meet regularly with community members) Book tip: George S. Day, "Strategy from outside in"

4. Are you learning new skills? Strategic leaders set the tone for the staff: we never stop getting better. • Improving the basics • All good relationships have effective communication at the core

And finally, effective leaders have to ask themselves this question: 5. Why am i doing this? • Our motivation affects the way we lead. Is it about me, or us? • Follow the 80-20 rule. Spend 80 percent of your time with the best 20 percent of your staff. Book tip: Patrick Lencioni, "Three signs of measurable job"

A Gallup poll revealed some interesting results about the American workforce. It said, • 25 percent of workers are engaged in their job. (These are your top performers) • 55 percent of workers are going through the motions. • 20 percent of workers are actively going against their employers' interests.

Imagine the productivity gains if you changed the above percentages.

Thanks for reading, Thomas Martinez