The Champion’s Brew is a weekly assembly of material I am reading, listening to, watching, or thinking about that is designed to equip and call you to uncommon leadership.  I often add my own little spin based on my takeaways and would love your input as well.  Any of the points especially impact you?  Drop me a note at [email protected], or comment on the blog to keep the conversation going!  I believe you will discover that the format is not only useful, but also that you can consume it within the time it takes you to enjoy your daily ‘brew’!  Become a member of the Champions Brew Nation by subscribing here!!

Here is your weekly drink of what I have been reading, listening to or watching to equip  me to:

  • Coach Well:  When someone comes to you with a ‘problem’ are you the type of person that immediately offers a solution, or do you work to be a coach to help that person learn to solve that problem and future problems on your own?  I believe that great leaders have a skill to ask more questions than just providing answers.  The question is, what questions should I ask?  I have 6 questions(in order!) that you could use to help an individual or team solve their problems.  Start with:
    • What is your desired ‘target’ state? – Does the person have a goal that solving the problem will accomplish?
    • What is your ‘current’ state or condition? – This question helps the person to understand the gap between where they want to be and where they are?
    • What are the three biggest obstacles to achieving your target ? – Before working on solutions, make sure they understand what is getting in their way.  If this doesn’t come first, the solution may not get them to the desired target!!
    • What is the ONE thing you can do to eliminate one of those barriers? – Try to have them work on one thing at a time.  Working on multiple variables can be overwhelming
    • When can you show me?  Hold them accountable to a date and follow up with them!!
    • How can I help? This is a very important question as a leader.  Maybe there is a barrier they need you to help remove.  This is not an opportunity for you to fix the problem for them, but rather for you to help them to remove an obstacle.

Ref: Toyota Kata

  • ‘Work’ Hard … and Build Faith at the same time:  I found these words of inspiration recently from an article in WorkLife magazine:

  What is your ministry?  That is a funny question to ask, I realize.  “But, I am not in the ministry,” you reply.  Or are you?  What, after all, is “The Ministry”?  Usually the term “ministry” means a God-given task of service, a self-giving mission.   Of course, we mentally qualify that, limiting the legitimacy of this “ministry” trademark to “spiritual” or soul-related endeavors.  Common, ordinary work need not apply.   In our conventional way of thinking such normal pursuits are tainted, “worldly”, or somehow less than God-relevant.

Yet, no matter what our job, every day of our lives has its God-appointed mission.  God has something He wants us to do today.  While our job by God’s design helps meet our needs and wants, it also helps meet the needs of others.  Although it may make us a profit, it is in no small way a gift of a little bit of ourselves to the world: our customers, our co-workers, our family, and hopefully to God. It is my God-given task of service.  That is how He wants me to see it.  It is my ministry. You may not wear a clerical collar, but don’t forget to put on this God-given identity. You, your work, and your day are all ordained.

Go out this week and fulfill your ‘ministry’ calling. 

  • Exercise Daily – Get your arm exercises in.  Orchestra Conductors live longer!  Here is a fun, informative piece from Dr. Gabe Mirkin about whether or not orchestrat conductors actually live longer:

The constant exercise involved in the act of conducting may be a strong part of the reason for conductors’ long lives. Any kind of vigorous exercise strengthens your heart and helps to prolong your life, and continuing to exercise as you grow older is unquestionably associated with extending life (Int J Clin Pract, Feb 2009;63(2):303-20; Biogerontology, Mar 2, 2016;17:567–580). Your heart is a muscle, and to strengthen any muscle, you have to exercise it against increasing resistance. When you swing your arms, your arm muscles contract and squeeze the veins near them to pump extra blood toward the heart. When your arm muscles relax, they allow blood to fill the veins near them. This alternate contracting and relaxing of the arm muscles pumps extra blood toward the heart (J Appl Physiol, Aug 2004;97(2):739-47). Your heart then must contract against a greater amount of blood inside its chambers, so it does this with a faster beat and with more force, and this makes the heart muscle stronger (Physiol Rev, Apr 2015;95(2): 549–601). .

Of course, what Dr. Mirkin says at the end is that the exercise coupled with an anti-inflammatory diet, no smoking, and moderating alcohol consumption… but, exercise those arms, too!!

  • Quote – “Give a man a fish, feed him for a day.  TEACH(Coach) a man to fish, feed him for a lifetime.”

What you need to do:

Call to Action:  How can you use one of the  questions above in the next week to improve your coaching skills and teach someone to fish?!

Let’s continue the conversation.  Email me at [email protected] or comment on the blog about what you find valuable with the Champions Brew this week.  Is there something you would like to see me add?  I am open to feedback!!!

I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of Champions Brew. If you did, I would appreciate it if you would share it with a friend who might enjoy it as well and ask them to subscribe! I will make sure they automatically get this email every week.

Until next time, go and Grow Champions!

One last thing… Season 2 of the Uncommon Leader Podcast is starting up March 8!!  My first guest is Rick Morrison, retired captain of the Roanoke police department in Roanoke, VA and the founder of Inspired Policing Solutions.  He has an incredible story of community transformation that took place in Roanoke, VA.  You don’t want to miss it!!  Click here to listen to the trailer about other exciting new conversations that will be coming your way.  Are you interested in being a guest on the Uncommon Leader Podcast?  Do you have a story to tell?  Email me [email protected] and lets have a chat and set something up!!

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To become Champion leader, we have to be on a continuous improvement journey for ourselves and others.  We have to be able to take advantage of the precious seconds that we have each day.  
There are things that I come across each week that help me, inspire me, relax me, motivate me, and are sometimes are just funny that I want to share with you so that you can smile more, build faith, think positively, network well, exercise often, eat healthy, and grow daily.

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