The Coach's Corner

Archive for June, 2019

The Final Quest

June 17th, 2019 // Tom Doescher // 0 Comments

Tom Doescher - Doescher Advisors

is a fascinating little book that has significantly impacted me for the past several months.

First, a disclaimer: It’s written by a Christian pastor about a series of dreams (visions) he had about the spiritual world. For that reason, you may want to skip this post.

Secondly, again as a Christian, he’s writing from his point of view of the Bible. Again, if that’s not something that’s to your taste, you may want to skip this post.

For those of you who are still with me, I would highly recommend this book, written by Rick Joyner. It’s a short, easy read. Whether the author’s vision of the spiritual world is “real” or whether he just has a vivid imagination, he’s able to paint a very realistic picture. In my three decades of being a Bible student, I’ve had limited exposure to the dark side of scripture. Joyner’s version of what could be or might be going on is very believable — to the point where I’ve thought of it almost every day since finishing the book. He has expressed a point of view that would explain experiences that I have daily.

As you know, the first category in the Doescher Advisors Executive Health Check-up is “Spiritual Health.” With that in mind, The Final Quest is something you may want to at least consider reading and reflecting upon.

What if what Joyner reports is true? How might it affect you?

Fearless

June 16th, 2019 // Tom Doescher // 0 Comments

Tom Doescher - Doescher Advisors

is a 2012 book about Adam Brown, a Navy Seal. I thought I was reading it for fun, due to my fetish about Seals over the past decade — but wow, was I wrong. Yes, it was fun and entertaining, but it was way more than that.

I believe Brown is a role model for having a clear mission (he knew his “Why”) and for staying laser-beam-focused on it.

First, a little background. Brown grew up in a loving, intact Christian family in Arkansas. He was an athlete and well liked in high school. Sadly, he lost his way after graduation and became addicted to drugs. His life got pretty ugly and, near the bottom, he attended a Teen Challenge drug treatment center. Along the way, he decided he wanted to become a Navy Seal and serve his country as a patriot warrior.

Before reading Fearless, I knew that becoming a Seal was a rigorous process, but it was more complex than I realized. Brown, however, was determined to join their ranks. Here are just a few obstacles he had to overcome:

  1. During his dark drug years, Brown was convicted of several felonies and spent time in prison. This was a huge deal-breaker that he miraculously overcame.
  2. Near the end of his Seal training, he became blind in his dominant right eye in a training accident, but he was able to train his non-dominant left eye and eventually passed the precision sniper marksmanship tests. More importantly, he convinced the Navy that being blind in one eye wouldn’t be a liability to his fellow warriors.
  3. During an early deployment in Iraq, he crushed his hand and severed all his fingers in a Humvee IUD accident. His fingers were reattached on his dominant right hand. Still, he learned how to use his left hand and, once again, passed the rigorous marksmanship training.
  4. Brown was always the one to volunteer for the toughest assignments and, as the title of the book reflects, he was, indeed, fearless.

If you’re struggling with your “Why” or staying on your “Why,” I would strongly encourage you read Fearless for motivation. I would say that focus is a common challenge for many entrepreneurs, and I think Brown is a poster child for being single-minded.

A postscript: I found Brown’s reporting of the ups and downs of his Christian faith and his lifelong struggle with his drug addiction refreshingly candid and realistic.

World-class Feedback

June 3rd, 2019 // Tom Doescher // 0 Comments

Tom Doescher - Doescher Advisors

is what Kim Scott, author of Radical Candor, is referring to when she describes how you can “Be a Kick-A__ Boss Without Losing Your Humanity.” If you’ve been a reader for awhile, you know that, on more than one occasion, I’ve encouraged team leaders to provide their associates with quality feedback. At Plante Moran, where I received great feedback from many different partners and associates (I didn’t say I always liked it), we referred to it as “Candor is Kindness.” Scott had the privilege of working for Apple and Google during their formative years and, per her book, both companies, although they used different styles, were havens for constructive feedback.

Here are two specific examples of quality, actionable feedback that I received. Early in my career, Plante Moran’s founding partner, Frank Moran, encouraged me to work on my grammar. I was a young hotshot, recent college graduate with a high grade point average, and Frank’s comments could have offended me. But he handled the situation in the most delicate way, and I’m forever grateful for his feedback. Another time, my team supervisor and mentor, Ken Kunkel — who provided hundreds of great suggestions — gently told me that I had coffee breath. I give these as simple but very personal examples. When I read Scott’s book, I was reminded of both Frank and Ken.

Based on my observations and experiences with privately owned businesses, I’ve found that many bosses aren’t providing good, actionable feedback to their team members.

If you own a business or are responsible for leading a team of people, I would highly recommend you read Radical Candor. Scott, whose mentor was/is Sheryl Sandberg, COO of Facebook, offers some great, practical examples and advice regarding feedback and career planning.

I’m going to leave it there and encourage you, after reading the book, to take the risk of giving your team members developmental feedback (stuff you’ve talked to your colleagues about, but have never shared with the specific person). If it would help, I would be happy to role-play a situation with you.

 

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Tom DoescherYou’ll find stories from the trenches, business lessons, and pertinent questions to help you find inspiration, professional growth, and leadership savvy.

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