Summer Reading: Solving Real Issues

What are your Issues?

Do you find you are not solving the right issues in your business and that you have to keep dealing with the same problems over and over again?

Every company has issues, obstacles and things that are getting in the way.  To thrive you need to get really great about setting up those issues, solving them as a team, and having them go away forever.

In EOS we teach our leadership teams a set of tools that help them with solving issues in the business. Without these tools, some amazingly strong leadership is required to be able to overcome issues and prevent them from blocking forward progress.

One story about incredible leadership overcoming issues of epic proportions that I love reading, and re-reading, is the story of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1914 expedition to Antarctica. It’s a great read for the summer!

Extraordinary Leadership & Solving Real Issues 

In 1914 Shackleton’s Antarctic expedition ran into some serious issues when their ship, the Endurance, got stuck in pack ice.  They couldn’t get free, and ended up having to spend a whole Antarctic winter stuck in the ice.  The issues they had to solve together were a matter of life or death.

Spring came, and instead of being set free as they hoped, the shifting ice crushed their ship and it sank!  They were now stuck on the ice solving issues, which got worse when the ice broke up and they had to take to their life boats in a stormy frigid sea.  They made it to land, but still far from any help or rescue, so Shackleton and 5 of his crew worked together to sail one 20 ft long lifeboat across 800 miles of stormy ocean to get help.  In an incredible feat of navigation and seamanship they found the island of South Georgia in the middle of the storm-tossed South Atlantic ocean. Shackleton found help at a whaling station after an epic trek across a mountain range, but then it took four tries before he was able to get back to Antarctica to rescue the rest of his crew.  He was ultimately successful and didn’t lose a single soul from their expedition.

Want to read more?

Shackleton’s story has been documented in several books, but one I recommend most is:

Shackleton’s Way – by Margot Morrell and Stephanie Capparell.

Written by two veteran business observers, Shackleton’s Way details his leadership tactics set against the epic survival story of the Endurance expedition.

You can find out more here:

Shackleton’s Leadership

The book breaks down Shackleton’s leadership skills into several key areas that align closely with the principles of EOS:

  1. Hire an outstanding crew: in EOS we teach Right People + Right Seats. You have to have both to build a really great business.
  2. Create a spirit of camaraderie: in EOS we teach creating a culture of accountability, based tightly on a shared set of core values, and becoming a healthy, functional team.
  3. Getting the best from each individual: in EOS we teach that becoming a strong leadership team means walking the talk, and having regular 1:1 conversations.
  4. Leading effectively in a crisis: in EOS we teach that you should learn lessons from the past, but then let go of the past and focus on the future, maintaining absolute confidence of success.
  5. Forming teams for tough assignments: in EOS we focus on building team health on a foundation of intense trust.
  6. Overcoming obstacles to reach a goal: in EOS we set up goals with the intention of attaining them. Each goal gets broken down to trackable daily activities that overcome barriers in the way.

Rate Yourself

Each of the 6 areas above can be turned into a point of inquiry – i.e how are you doing in hiring an outstanding crew? Rate yourself on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being best. If you rate any area below an 8, the next reflection is: what do you want to do about it?

If you are motivated to take action to improve your scores, then I’m here to help.

Get in Touch with this Implementer

Let’s Talk!

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