Author Archives: mimin

Can You Control?

download (25)Seems like everyone I know, myself included, wants to control something- and for many of us, control everything. We all know that is impossible (it rains when I don’t want it to… ), but yet persist in trying. Is it all hopeless?

I was in an amazing conference this past week on Being A Leader which included work on neuroscience. I am also in an intensive study program on neuroscience and affecting change in the conversations we have utilizing neuroscience. It is fascinating and I want to share a few things I have discovered.

I had something happen where someone got verbally aggressive toward me (completely unprovoked). I had a physical reaction. I thought to myself “this is not about you” and “there is no real threat, we are in public and he is not going to hurt you”. I noticed as time went on, I was physically holding myself still so as to not ‘get hurt’ or ‘attacked’ again. I had to really work on talking to myself to do this. Then, it happened again and was more aggressive than before. I sat still and asked him to stop doing it- and he got more aggressive (louder, cussing at me, and physically leaning toward me). I got up, said ” I am done” and left while he continued his verbal tirade. Physically, I was shaking.

I left the room and sat down with someone I trust and talked it through. Here is what I discovered through my conversation and the work I am studying in neuroscience. My brain reacted to a threat and I was moving without thinking. (Thank you, brain!). Once I talked it through and got the level of threat my brain perceived was inconsistent with the real threat (words were the only REAL threat, there was no real physical danger), I could downregulate my brain’s response and physically be calm. That was triumphant, personally. The conversation was the key.

I talked with the author of Conversational Intelligence, Judith Glaser, and the group that I study with about this. I got our brains are reacting to threats, which then have a physical reaction. How we can control it is simply by having a conversation to get what is really happening. Conversations actually then impact the brain’s chemistry and alter our physical state. The key, as I mentioned, is the conversation with another person to get what is really happening.

The point is, you and I try to control things over which we have little to no control. The things we can impact only can be impacted when we talk it out with others. I do mean talk it out from being committed to get past it, and not from wanting to get someone to agree with us about how bad or wrong someone or something is. The kind of conversation where we just find someone to validate our viewpoint, makes no difference, really. What I am speaking about is the kind of conversation where you talk about what happened to purposefully get past something that happened and be curious to discover what happened. It is an amazing process that when you have that kind of conversation, you are actually impacting your brain chemistry, and can shift your state of mind. I did it, and I know you can, too.

Next time, something happens that gets you upset or unhappy and you want to control it, try out having a conversation with someone. See if you can discover what happened, really, and if you can learn to calm your brain and alter your reaction. Let me know how it goes!

Is Your Company Stuck in a Circle of Frustration

images (8)The business alignment process starts with taking three steps. The first step is recognizing when a company is misaligned and not making progress on fixing the problem. Those companies and their unhappy owners are stuck in the Circle of Frustration. Escape is difficult because the owner’s behaviors and decisions keep repeating themselves.

From my experience there are at least three signs of the Circle of Frustration:

1) Repeatedly asking versions of “Why is it so difficult?”

2) Grasping at clichés

3) Circular logic – “When things get better then we can start dealing with the problems.”

Let’s take a closer look at each sign.

Lyrics from ” Why is everything so difficult?”

Every frustrated business owner I have ever worked with has their version of the song, “Why is it so difficult?” Like country music, the different versions of the song have a pattern. Instead of references to lost love, broken pickup trucks, rodeos and beer, the misaligned company song usually references horrible meetings, lost talent, reply all email battles and fighting fires all day every day. Most business owners have asked versions of these questions:

“Why is it so difficult to…

•… make a hiring decision?

•… hire people that deliver results?

•… finish a meeting on time?

•… keep the ‘A’ players?

•… get through all the long emails arguing about the same things over and over?

•… put out all the fires and have time to work on the business?”

If you often sing the song, you may be stuck in the Circle of Frustration.

In Case of Emergency, Grasp for Clichés

As things get worse thoughts of whether the company or you will survive fill your head each night. You wake up in the middle of the night and reach for the first reassuring cliché that comes to mind. You might latch onto thoughts like the following:

• “If I could just get one great sales person, then things would turn around.”

• “If we win this account, then the cash would start coming in and we could hire ‘A’ players.”

• “I need ‘A’ players. If we had l ‘A’ players, things would be different.”

• “I just need to fire myself and hire a real CEO, I am an entrepreneur not a manager.”

If these are your comforting thoughts, you are sleeping in the Circle of Frustration, and dreaming how to escape.

When Things Get Better…

I know what you are thinking, “alright, alright I am probably stuck in the Circle of Frustration, but I don’t have time to change. I can barely keep the daily fires from burning this company down. Once things get better (insert favorite cliché) then we can sit down and start to change things.” But things won’t get better on their own and the daily emergencies will continue to keep you from doing something different.

Albert Einstein understood the key to escaping the Circle of Frustration and expressed it like this:

“You can’t solve current problems with current thinking. Current problems are the result of current thinking.”

Albert’s assessment of the situation makes it clear that your current thinking is what keeps you trapped in the Circle.

Okay, we want to get unstuck. Now what?

Once the leaders of a business recognize they are caught in the Circle of Frustration then they can turn their attention to steps to escape it. In the next installment, you will learn more about the three methods of escaping the Circle of Frustration: death, luck and choice.


What Can a Business Coaching Company Do for You?

download (21)Should you consider hiring a business coach to help you further your business, career or even personal life?

People sometimes are weary before hiring a coaching company because they do not know if it is worth the investment. Now this can stem from the uncertainty of future results or the initial investment of crucial time and money. When you are running a company, you do not want to waste your resources. And no business coaching company wants you to. Rather, they want to help you develop skills that are essential to your progression and future business success. Read the information below to better gauge if this seems like the right fit for you.

What exactly can working with a business coaching company do for you?

They can help change the effectiveness and overall work ethic of your employees and teams. The most important part of coaching is that it is about cultivating a true relationship between the individuals, NOT a simple transaction. Interesting data shows how, although coaches are not specifically hired to help with people’s private life, often times, the line between personal and professional lives merges, as s/he helps you grow as an individual. Research from the International Coach Federation has shown how their methods can help a company’s employees, employers and even their families. The reason for this is because business coaching focuses on teaching problems solving skills, individual leadership skills, and organizational skills. These payoffs result in a high ROI that more than justify the money and time spent.

One thing to note here is that satisfaction is often a relative term, where no one experience will be the same. Because the problems within each company and the goals that a client wants to reach vary, the experiences and results that one individual will see will be different from someone else’s. You must go into the process with an open mind and be willing to work with the coach for the partnership to be successful. However, 99% of companies and individuals that have moved forward have said that they been between ‘somewhat’ to ‘very satisfied’ with the experience. As long as the client is happy with the partnership, most of them carry on with the coaching in order to see continued results and positive changes.

Contact a local business consulting company and set up a meeting to see how they can you and your company achieve the results you want.

For more information, including data about ROI as well as personal and organization impacts from coaching, check out our blog and the article, “How Effective Are Business Coaching Companies”.


Creating a FIRST IMPRESSION That Becomes the LASTing One!

download (20)For any product or a brand to get established and become popular, much depends on the first impression it gives to people. Businesses allocate huge budgets towards making their brand/product more and more popular and heartily accepted by the end-users. However, a ‘First Impression’ is the first step towards building a Brand Image – be it a product, service, an organization, or even an individual.

According to many ‘Leadership Skills‘ development experts, a ‘First Impression’ is a notion that is felt when an individual comes into a direct or indirect contact with either another individual, object, place or a situation. The event of a meeting between two sides for matrimonial purposes is the perfect example to be imagined to explain best a ‘First Impression’. No doubt, both sides put up their best foot to the fore!

Such a ‘First’ impression may or may not produce the desired experience of pleasant emotions, may or may not be a lasting one or simply may change over a period of time. Consider a bright business prospect being contacted either in person, on by phone or through an e-Mail. A well-articulated, crisp, concise and to-the-point written e-mail will enable the customer to derive positivity through it. The following phone call, again crisp, concise and full of professional mannerisms will somewhat ADD ON to the positivity generated by the previous e-mail. Thereafter, an in-person meeting with the prospect will give a better insight of an individual’s personality and the organization he/she represents. Upon the prospect’s visit to the business premises, a well-decorated office and well-groomed employees will emboss a permanent stamp of an IMPRESSION that the prospect will carry for the lifetime.

Hence, it is very necessary to create a positive ‘First Impression’ that provides a ‘feel good’ factor and thus, reaping profits for the business enterprise! Let’s give a brief look at the fundamentals of creating a good ‘First Impression’.

What are the most elementary and basic fundamentals that make a good ‘FIRST IMPRESSION’?

˜ Customer’s Moments of truth – One should look forward to delivering some moments of truth that every prospective customer may expect. One must consider such moments of truth as a set of opportunities to impress the customer and convert the interaction into eventual sales.

With a clear focus, one can manage these moments of truth for a positive outcome!

  • Recognize and prioritize the ‘Contact’ points that created positivity for the customer,
  • Develop better responses to be presented to the customer,
  • Make out and opt for the best ‘Customer Delighting’ responses,
  • Create a quality ‘benchmark’ of products and services offered,
  • Measure the ‘Happiness’ and ‘fulfillment’ levels regularly.

Most management experts and sales trainers preach that a regular improvement in the quality of moments of truth experienced by the customer enhances their loyalty factor.

˜ Reality versus Perception – The way two different individuals look at a situation may or may not vary. The basic reason lies in the ‘awareness’ about the subject matter and its innate facts and the same gives rise to either a ground reality or a mere perception of an unaware insight of the individual. Most management ‘Gurus’ who are instructors of “Professional Skills” development, duly acknowledge that many and most individuals perceive their workplace as no less than a theatre of ‘WAR’ existing inside the workplace framework. Scary enough! Many crew members feel hastened or overcome at work due to the ‘perception’ they have in their minds about their ‘workloads’. This perception differs to a substantial extent, from the thought processes of their superiors. The superiors, however, must regularly apprise their peers with the ‘reality’ that might be lying in-between. This can bring in some concrete benefits in terms of perceptions being absorbed as a far better reality!

If you want to understand more about how such ‘Moments of Truth’ can really benefit you, kindly visit the Global ACT website and fill up the customer contact form therein. On the second thought, you can also send an e-mail the details of which are mentioned on the Global ACT website.

How Effective Will a Business Coaching Company Be?

download (22)In a previous post regarding business coaching companies, we discussed what such companies can do to help your business. They will work with your business to establish a partnership that will help you reach your goals.

We have established that working with a coach truly does produce results. The next question is: just how effective will it be? Will the results in the future truly offset the current investment?

We understand that only a marginal impact may not be enough to justify hiring a business coach but the International Coaching Federation has research that shows that there are clear benefits that arise for the individual and the company as a whole.

Each individual is unique in terms of skills s/he possesses and how s/he naturally is. Some people are very confident, others great public speakers. Here enters a business coach to present new perspectives and develop these skills.

Individuals that have gone through different programs have commented saying that it presented them with a better understanding of who they are as a person- where they feel confident and what they need to work on. Just to point out a few the developments that have been reported, data from a study shows that:

  • 80% of participants saw improved self-confidence.
  • 67% saw improved work/life balance.

Business coaching companies work with a company and its employees to help pull out their potential. Along with these personal improvements, coaching also translated to better work performance, in terms of management and team work.

Why do companies invest in hiring business coaching companies? BECAUSE THEY WORK.

Although it may be an investment, the return on investment (ROI), based on the overall results and improvements of the employees and teams, is much higher. While there is a broad spectrum of ROI figures, a reliable range of can be anywhere from 500%-700% (Anderson, 2008). With numbers like this, it is clear to see why so many businesses are looking to work with companies that provide these services.

So is hiring a business coach worth it in the long run? In a word – YES. You will see your employees experience personal benefits as well as organizations growth, resulting in better-functioning company.

Because of significant results that business coaching produces, it is no surprise that it is a growing industry. If you think you could benefit from these services, reach out to such companies in your area to see how they can work with you to improve your business.

For more information, including data points about personal and organization impacts from a study, check out our blog and the article, “How Effective Are Business Coaching Companies?”.

What To Do When Your Boss Is Younger Than You Are

download (19)What have you always pictured your boss looking like? If you are anything like me, you’ve always pictured them as a grumpy old man. Or a grumpy old woman if you want to get all modern. However, there is one thing that I’ve never really pictured my boss as being – younger than I am! However, this is starting to happen. Firms are starting to put Gen-X folks into senior management positions. What should you do if this happens to when you are in the CIO position?

What’s Going On?

So just exactly how did you end up having the CIO job, but working for someone who is younger than you are? It turns out that one of those natural generational shifts is currently underway. The baby boomers who have been running things are now starting to reach retirement age. What this means for firms is that they are starting to replace their leaving senior management with members of the next generation: Gen-X. The Gen-X’ers were born between 1965 and 1980. This switch is happening at a lot of firms that you may recognize: McDonalds, Harley Davison, Cisco, and Microsoft.

One of the reasons that firms are moving to put a younger generation of managers in charge of (you and) the company is because they are highly aware of what is coming their way. The next-next generation of workers has already entered the workplace: the millennials. This new batch of workers are looking for different things from their employers. What matters the most to them is flexibility. In order for them to remain at a job for any length of time, they are going to have to feel engaged in their job – they need to feel as though their actions count.

Another reason that firms are moving younger workers into senior management positions is because they are losing market share and they feel as though they need new thinking in order to turn things around. Both Harley Davison and McDonalds are currently dealing with declining market shares as their traditional customers become older. The firms are going to have to start to create products and services that appeal to younger customers and the firms appear to believe that they need younger management in order to make this happen.

What Will These New Leaders Be Doing?

As a CIO who is in charge of an IT department, any time there is a change in your management, it may have an impact on your department’s ability to get work done. What this means for you is that you are going to have to understand what your new, younger, management is going to focusing on. If you can determine what they want to accomplish, then you can position your department to help them to be successful and hopefully you’ll get the support that you need.

One of the things that is going to distinguish this new crop of senior managers from the one that they are replacing is that they are willing to take more risks. They’ve all been raised around computers and so they are generally more tech savvy and they understand the importance of information technology. What all of this means is that they tend to make decisions faster than the managers that they are replacing. What this means for you is that your department’s requests for resources and funding should get an answer quicker; however, I’m not saying that you’ll always get the answer that you want!

Finally, in order to work closely with your new younger boss, you need to understand what is going to be on their minds. One of the most important things is going to be the hiring process. Expect them to spend a great deal more time working with HR trying to find out ways to attract the best talent to join the company. It won’t stop there. Also expect your boss to be very focused on trying to figure out what the company is going to have to do in order to retain the talent that it has. As a CIO, this is good news for you!

What All Of This Means For You

The times they are a changing. As CIOs we may soon find ourselves in a position in which the boss that we’re working for is younger than us. At a number of firms, Gen-X staff are starting to be moved into senior management positions. Is this going to be a problem?

As CIOs we need to understand what is going on here. The markets that many firms are competing in are rapidly changing. This means that they feel that they need to have leaders who can more quickly change with the markets. Gen-X staff are starting to be placed in senior leadership roles. What you are going to discover is that what they focus on is going to be different from the management that they are replacing. Specifically, what is important to them will be staffing and keeping the staffing that they have. You should also notice that they react to market changes quicker and make decisions faster.

No, it may not be easy working for someone who is younger that you are – “that should be my job!” However, you will need to adapt to this new generation of management. It can be a very good thing for you because things will happen faster and you should be given a freer hand to focus on the needs of your department and keeping them together.


I Gotta Know

download (18)I love to learn. I read voraciously, always have since I was a little girl. I pay attention to people, to things in the world, to what is happening. I was raised by parents who valued learning, and I adopted their philosophy. You might be thinking- that is great, so what? Here is the thing, the drive to know can also be limiting.

I am so driven to know that when I make a mistake, I get upset with myself. I am much better about it after years of practice but it is still an unconscious automatic reaction to my mistakes (I am OK with other’s mistakes, as long as they fess up and fix them!). I am limited because I don’t like open-ended questions, and I stop discovering as soon as I have ‘the’ answer.

I am really committed to empowering people and especially women. I have this notion that we, together, can end the gender gap both in pay and influence, in my lifetime. Everything seems aligned for this- it is a hot topic. And I am still committed to that.

However, when I start asking a question, without answering it-the question of ‘What is really possible if women everywhere are empowered?” the playing field gets much bigger. Just imagine what IS possible. I have no idea, and most of us don’t. What I do know is if we are willing to keep asking the question and then taking action as we see the actions there are to take, we will end the gender gap and probably so much more. I am really excited and… a bit intimidated, but I figure I am not alone and together, we can do so much.

Is there something that is important to you, where you have stopped imagining what is possible? If that is the case for you, I invite you to start asking new questions, start having conversations, start taking action and see what happens!

Why Aren’t Our Networks Staying Up

download (17)Does anyone besides me remember the phone system? You could be just about anywhere in the world at any time and you could pick up a phone, call someone, and your call would go right through. The Plain Old Telephone System (POTS) just worked. Now nothing is ever perfect and the POTS wasn’t perfect either, but it was 99.999% perfect which meant that it only didn’t work for about 5 minutes per year. Clearly, despite the importance of information technology, the networks that we’re designing and building today don’t work anywhere this reliably. Why not?

Network Outages Seem To Be A Part Of Life

Back in the day, when the phone network was “the network”, an outage was a big deal. It got stories written about it in papers and people talked about it on TV. The reason that it was such a big deal was because it didn’t happen very often. Things have certainly changed. In the first half of 2015 alone the NYSE halted trading because of a technical glitch and United Airlines had to ground all of their airlines because of problems with a program that scheduled pilots.

I think that there are a few things that have probably lead us to where we find ourselves today. First off, as any person with the CIO job can tell you, we have a lot more networks that we are using to run things. In any given company there are the networks that deal with creating the products and services that the company sells and then there are the networks that are used to actually run the company. Just to make things a little bit more difficult, each of these networks is now more complex. They have more boxes and software and other components that make them up.

One of the other reasons that network outages seem to occur more frequently these days is simply because CIOs don’t staff their IT departments to deal with outages like the phone company used to. For regulatory reasons, the phone company was under the gun when they had a network outage. They needed to fix it fast. This meant that they hired and trained an army of skilled technicians who would spring into action any time there was a network outage. People in the CIO position don’t do this today and so our outages tend to last much longer.

It’s All About Managing Change

As a CIO you would prefer that your corporate networks not experience any downtime. However, of course, this will never be possible. What we need to do is to take some time and try to get to the root cause of just exactly why we and our peers are seeing so many high profile network outages.

I sorta hate to say this, but the answer to this question is actually pretty obvious. The reason that so many of us CIOs have been experiencing network outages is because of the high rate of change that is occurring within our networks. Just when we get our network stable and configured the way that it has to be in order to work with and for our company, along comes yet another change. The change can be either hardware or software but because it changes our network into a partially upgraded beast for a while, bad things can easily happen.

As a CIO we can’t always prevent outages from happening. However, what we can do is to take steps to minimize the probability that they will occur. What we need to do within our IT departments is to make sure that we are using solid well-documented and automated processes as much as possible in order to test, build, upgrade and configure our networks. It’s only by doing this that we’ll start to drive some of human error out of these processes and reduce the possibility of having yet another network outage.

What All Of This Means For You

I believe that most of us can remember a time when there were things that just seemed to always work. Now we find ourselves living in an age where a computer failure seems to take down the NYSE every month or so, Internet providers experience massive outages, etc. Why do today’s modern networks seem to work so much worse than the phone network of yesterday?

It turns out that there are a lot of different reasons that are all contributing to our current lack of network reliability. Many firms prefer to invest in other things until they experience an infrastructure problem. In the past firms maintained army’s of technicians to fix issues, today’s lean organizations can take much longer to clear errors. Today’s networks are more complex, carry more data, and change more rapidly than ever before. The result is that we’ll keep seeing more network outages.

As CIOs we need to understand the situation that we find ourselves in. Our IT departments have created some wonderfully functional networks that because of the great deal of change that is always going on in IT may at times experience outages. What we need to do is to take the time to develop contingency plans that determine what action we’ll take when, not if, our networks go down. Being ready for bad things is what being a CIO is all about.

Dr. Jim Anderson

“America’s #1 Unforgettable Business Communication Skills Coach”

5 Steps To Better Relationships With Your Subordinates

download (16)How can you make your business team more productive? Today’s employees aren’t drones stuck in cubicles like a Dilbert cartoon. Your subordinates live in a social media world and expect personal engagement. Here are 5 ways to better relationships with your subordinates:

Know Yourself

The first step is to connect more deeply with your inner self and to use that self-realization as the basis for your leadership. Connecting to your callings, and learning to love and trust your intuition gives you confidence. When you act from fear and doubt, you won’t motivate anyone else to support organizational change; however, when you are sure of yourself, you inspire your subordinates to trust you.

Know Your Subordinates

Research shows that the most effective leaders have a high emotional intelligence, meaning they understand people and can read their thoughts and feelings. One way to become better at emotional intuition is to get to know your subordinates. Spend time with them and find out about their families, their interests outside of work, and their particular fears, strengths, and dreams. As you build personal relationships with subordinates they will develop trust in you and will be willing to trust your leadership even when it requires extra perseverance and dedication to a project.

Pay Attention to Emotional Needs

How someone feels about the ups and downs of a project or assignment can greatly affect how hard they will work to overcome problems. Asking employees about their feelings about their work can help. Allowing them to safely express how they feel can help you recognize aspects of a business project that cause stress on your subordinates and ways that you as a leader can help to reassure them and keep them motivated and on the right track.

Be Positive and Confident

The people under you want to know that the goals you set are achievable and important. You set the tone for how they feel about their work. When you present your goals confidently, you set a positive tone for meetings and personal dealings with employees.

Keep Your Cool

Inevitably, problems will arise in your business plans and employees will deal with stress and anger at each other and at whoever is in charge. Modeling the behavior you want from your employees is important. Keeping your cool and remaining in control of the situation helps your subordinates have confidence in your leadership and goals and can prevent the members of the project from getting off track.

In these days of continual change in business through globalization, social media feedback and integration, business leaders need more than talent and good ideas, they need to have the emotional intelligence that helps them have good relationships with subordinates so that goals can be accomplished.

5 Ways to Make Transparency Work With KPIs

images (7)There’s a glass wall between the waiting room and the workshop at the windscreen shop where I took my new car to have its – you guessed it – windscreen replaced last week. I could watch the whole process, if I wanted, while sipping as many espressos as I fancied.

Clearly, they aren’t afraid of their customers seeing how things happen “backstage”. They have nothing to hide. I wonder if that’s because:

    1. They clearly care about their customers. They gave plenty of time to help me understand what would happen to my precious new car, and to explain exactly what I should expect with an aftermarket windscreen compared to the factory one. No question was too silly for them to answer with care.


    1. They have defined processes. Staff moved through each step, from when I entered the reception to when I drove off, with proficiency and ease. It meant they had the bandwidth to be friendly and courteous in each interaction.


    1. They promised what they know they can deliver. The promise to me was completion in 2 hours, but the delivery was only 90 minutes. My expectations were virtually guaranteed to be met.


    1. They admit mistakes without hesitation or fuss. That seems to be because they already have the solution. They had quoted based on some additional parts for my car that they didn’t have in stock. But they didn’t end up needing those parts, so they explained the mistake and how my bill would now be $50 less.


  1. The technicians directly interact with customers. The people who did the windscreen replacement were the people who spoke with me about what would happen and gave me updates as it did happen.

Transparency means we can see through to what’s really happening. When we talk about transparency in organisational performance, it means seeing through to if and how well the organisation is doing what it’s supposed to do. It’s the KPIs or performance measures that replace the opaque walls with clear glass, so it’s possible to see what’s really happening.

That’s confronting and scary for many people. So much so, that KPIs are avoided, or only the good stuff is measured. But when results are buried in darkness, they will only get worse. To paraphrase authors of Hard Facts, Dangerous Half-Truths and Total Nonsense, Pfeffer and Sutton, if we want to be a high performing organisation then we have to decide that we want to be told the truth and not be told only the good news.

We can draw parallels from the windscreen shop’s transparency, to bolster ourselves in the face of the transparency forced by our KPIs:

    1. When we care about our stakeholders honestly, they can tell, and they won’t be judgmental or untrusting.


    1. When our processes are deliberately designed, we know we have influence over the results we deliver, and can deliver confidently, continuing to care for our customer or stakeholder.


    1. When we know our capability, we know what we can promise. And then as we continually improve our capability, we can deliver beyond expectations. Stakeholders will only be surprised in a good way.


    1. When we own mistakes, we can own the solutions. Stakeholders want to hear solutions, not problems. When they hear solutions, they know they can trust that we are caring for them.


  1. When we involve our stakeholders in what’s happening, they feel part of the process and not like the process is being done to them.

Transparency is important – even essential – if we care about high performance, or even just better performance. But to work, it needs to be framed in clarity, curiosity and inclusiveness. While ever it’s framed in ‘checking up on’ and ‘catching out’, our fear of it will always get in the way of knowing the truth we really need to know before we can make any real improvements in performance.