Annotated master (“the works”) presentation/ Tom Peters’ Re-Imagine excellence!


“Development can help great people be even better— but if I had a dollar to spend, I’d spend 70 cents getting the right person in the door.” —Paul Russell, Director, Leadership and Development, Google



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“Development can help great people be even better— but if I had a dollar to spend, I’d spend 70 cents getting the right person in the door.” —Paul Russell, Director, Leadership and Development, Google

  • “In short, hiring is the most important aspect of business and yet remains woefully misunderstood.”
  • Source: Wall Street Journal, 10.29.08,
  • review of Who: The A Method for Hiring,
  • Geoff Smart and Randy Street
  • So do you consider yourself a full-bore … PROFESSIONAL … when it comes to hiring? (Take care in answering, please.) (If you buy something like the “70%,” what could be more important?????)

“It’s simple, really, Tom. Hire for s, and, above all, promote for s.” —Starbucks regional manager, on why so many smiles at Starbucks shops

Put it (e.g., the likes of “smiles in a way that lights up a room”) in the FORMAL criteria list. DAMN IT!

  • AND .. could you consider plain English? Not “engages the interviewer in a positive fashion.”
  • Instead: “SMILES A LOT.”
  • Observed closely: The use of “I” or “We” during a
  • job interview.
  • Source: Leonard Berry & Kent Seltman, chapter 6, “Hiring for Values,”
  • Management Lessons From Mayo Clinic
  • AND .. could you consider plain English? Not “exhibits traits associated with good teamwork.”
  • Instead: “Uses ‘We’ more than ‘I’.”
  • (FYI: Love this!)
  • (FYI 2: The Mayo Clinic book is ... SUPERB.)

Andrew Carnegie’s Tombstone Inscription … Here lies a man Who knew how to enlist In his service Better men than himself. Source: Peter Drucker, The Practice of Management

  • One more “easier said than done.” Eh?
  • Quiet

Susan Cain’s Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking made a profound impact on me. We tend to favor the “noisy ones”—and thence downplay the power of the 50% amongst us who are “the quiet ones.” I.e., we blow off [or, at least, undervalue] 50% 0f the talent pool. Talk about a “missed opportunity”!

  • “We live with a value system that I call the Extrovert Ideal—the omnipresent belief that the ideal self is gregarious, alpha, and comfortable in the spotlight. The archetypal extrovert prefers action to contemplation, risk-taking to heed-taking, certainty to doubt. … We think that we value individuality, but all too often we admire one type of individual … Introversion is now a second-class personality trait. … The Extrovert Ideal has been documented in many studies. Talkative people, for example, are rated as smarter, better looking, more interesting, and more desirable as friends. Velocity of speech counts as well as volume: We rank fast talkers as more competent and likeable than slow ones. But we make a grave mistake to embrace the Extrovert Ideal so unthinkingly. … As the science journalist Winifred Gallagher writes, ‘The glory of the disposition that stops to consider stimuli rather than rushing to engage with them is its long association with intellectual and artistic achievement. Neither E = mc squared or Paradise Lost was dashed off by a party animal.’ Even in less obviously introverted occupations, like finance, politics, and activism, some of the greatest leaps forward were made by introverts … figures like Eleanor Roosevelt, Warren Buffett and Gandhi achieved what they did not in spite of but because of their introversion.” —Susan Cain, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking
  • “The next time you see a person with a composed face and a soft voice, remember that inside her mind she might be solving an equation, composing a sonnet, designing a hat. She might, that is, be deploying the power of quiet.” —Susan Cain,
  • Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking

2/Year = Legacy

  • Your legacy is achieved and maintained to a great extent by your promotion decisions—about two per year on average. In a five-year stint, that’s 10 decisions that make or break you.
  • DO YOU ACT ACCORDINGLY?
  • (No glib answer, please.)

Promotion Decisions “life and death decisions” Source: Peter Drucker, The Practice of Management

  • A promotion decision is akin to an acquisition decision. The same degree of care therewith should be exercised.

“A man should never be promoted to a managerial position if his vision focuses on people’s weaknesses rather than on their strengths.” —Peter Drucker, The Practice of Management

  • Evaluation

EVALUATING PEOPLE = #1 DIFFERENTIATOR Source: Jack Welch, now Jeff Immelt on GE’s top strategic skill (!!!!)

“In most companies, the Talent Review Process is a farce. At GE, Jack Welch and his two top HR people visit each division for a day. They review the top 20 to 50 people by name. They talk about Talent Pool strengthening issues. The Talent Review Process is a contact sport at GE; it has the intensity and the importance of the budget process at most companies.” —Ed Michaels, War for Talent

  • A mouthful, eh?
  • (And you and yours?)
  • Self-Evaluation



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