There’s more power in these words than you might imagine.

Most customers understand, and even expect, some mistakes. Nobody’s perfect. What frustrates people isn’t the mistake, it’s the justification, the refusal to acknowledge the error, or the compounding of the error.

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When developing a marketing strategy, it’s important to know the difference between gimmicks and hooks.

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Most shortcuts are more trouble than they’re worth.

When you’re stuck in an Uber with a driver using Waze, zipping in and out of side streets to save a minute here and a minute there, you’re liable to get there slower than you would have otherwise.

It might seem faster, and occasionally it actually is, but most of the time you hit more lights, more stop signs, and more traffic.

When your business takes shortcuts, the same thing happens.

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Seth Godin writes that breakthroughs lie in the area between “unexpected, yet totally plausible.”

This is a smart insight, and it got me thinking about the conditions necessary to achieve breakthroughs on a team.

In my experience, the teams that achieve frequent breakthroughs are the ones that have:

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Stuck. Frustrated. Banging your head on the table. We’ve all been there.

Getting unstuck is often a matter of getting perspective.

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Even the best leaders often overestimate how many projects their teams can tackle.

Frequently, this happens because work output doesn’t scale at the same rate as team size. Adding new team members always comes with its own coordination, education, and communication costs.

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Imagine what organizations would be like if they were only filled with people with practical skills.

How much do we waste by hiring analysts who can’t implement and managers who can’t do?

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All of us know deep in our guts that because I said so, I’m the CEO, and respect the office are all horrible reasons to do something.

Yet some leaders still insist on using authority like a hammer, pounding followers into submission.

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Most goal tracking focuses on either inputs or outputs.

Output-focused tracking centers on a result. How much weight did I lose? How much revenue did we make? Input focused revenue centers on behavior. How many calories did I consume? How many sales calls did we make?

But tracking only one or the other usually isn’t very helpful.

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Teams are a tough one.

It’s difficult to accomplish anything significant without a team. Big projects demand more skills, talents, and ideas than any one person can provide.

But teams take energy, time, and care.

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