As researchers and authors inside the O.C. Tanner Institute, David Sturt and Todd R. Nordstrom write about people who make a difference—what they think about, what they do, and how they achieve extraordinary results.
Sturt is Executive Vice President at the O.C. Tanner Institute. His recent book, Great Work: How To Make A Difference People Love from McGraw-Hill debuted at #6 on the New York Times Best Sellers List.
Nordstrom is Director of Institute Content. He has been a driving force and voice of business publishing and management sciences throughout his entire career—impacting millions of readers in print and online.
The two consult with leaders and speak at leadership conferences around the world.
“Often, no matter how hard I work, I feel like I can’t get it all done. Even when I do my best to be productive, I just don’t make enough headway.” Phoebe dropped us a line from Minneapolis sharing her dilemma—and we immediately empathized with her struggle. Phoebe’s not alone in battling productivity burnout.
At our last leader training, we asked a simple question. “Show of hands. Who here has a difficult team member who they feel they just can’t build respect with?” Across the room, hands shot up. CEOs of large companies, HR leaders, small business owners, and mid-level managers: everyone raised their hands.
Laura had just returned from an IT industry conference. Apparently, it had been a whirlwind event, full of informative sessions, and new contacts. Returning to the office, Laura looked forward to briefing her team on the latest tech trends. She was excited about how her new knowledge could benefit the company.
Once November hits, companies around the nation start planning their annual awards luncheon, fancy dinner event, or holiday retreat. Entire departments might take a Friday off or stay late to decorate the office to glow with seasonal charm. The mood this time of year is undeniably festive—at least, as festive as work can be.
Do you ever feel left out of decisions at work? At the departmental meeting, for example, maybe your team unveiled a new direction for a project, and everyone was excited—except for you. Why not you? Because, for some reason, you’re the only person who didn’t know about this new, and exciting, direction.
It was parent-teacher conference season once again. After waiting in line for a while and scanning his daughter’s report card, Todd was eager to talk to Lila’s teacher about her performance in math class. It wasn’t that his daughter was struggling—in fact, she was excelling academically—but for some reason, she just wasn’t…
“How could we have been so wrong?” he asked. “I was excited about Amanda’s potential and really enthusiastic to get her on the team. The interview process went great. She had all the skills and knowledge we wanted. She even appeared to be extremely enthusiastic. Overall, Amanda seemed like a perfect fit for us.