RadReads​ - You're the Chief "Unblocking" Officer

How to ensure that the leverage cascades down the organization  ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Hey friend,

Hope you're all having a wonderful weekend. How is it the last week of (checks notes) May?!?! I've been thinking a ton about how managers do their $10K Work. Today's essay comes looks at the "recursive" nature of high-leverage work.

One June 7th, I'll be speaking at the free Talent To Money Summit run by The Ask. This virtual summit aims to answer a critical question asked by all aspiring entrepreneurs: Where to start?


You're the Chief "Unblocking" Officer

"It's like herding cats."

That's how a friend recently described being a manager.

Jerry Colonna (aka the CEO Whisperer) has his own pithy take on what makes management tricky:

We're just bags of chemicals.

Yup. And as a manager we need to get these bags of chemicals to "click."

Now don't get me wrong. Management is a tremendous honor. To me it's akin to being a parent. People are entrusting their careers (and by extension, their lives) to you.

It saddens me when RadReaders have to work for sh*tty managers.

My own career has spanned 3 seasons of management.

In my late 20s I managed a team of research analysts at a large Fortune 500 company (BlackRock).

I quit at 35, became a solopreneur and went on to rebel against all things Corporate America.

Including management.

I wanted to go where the wind wanted to take me. No obstacles, responsibilities and one-on-ones.

Then this January, I re-emerged and began my next chapter as the CEO of a fully remote company. And it's been a true joy and honor (hand on my heart, I had missed it during all my years alone). But it's been demanding.

While I definitely haven't been herding cats, I typically feel like Air Traffic Control.

This led me to an uncomfortable realization about my ability to focus and do Deep Work:

With each new direct report comes more Slack messages, meetings and metrics. (Not to mention, making available when the inevitable personal challenge arises).

And these responsibilities grow exponentially.

This has wrecked havoc for my ability to focus and decimated my ability to do Deep Work.

But that's ok, here's why.


Here are this week's top reads:

// one

The Pursuit of Emptiness: Why Americans Have Never Been A Happy Bunch

7 minutes | John Perry Barlow

Is happiness something to pursue? Does it find us? Or does it arise through mission, love and community? Americans (and these pages) are obsessed with happiness. A counterpoint, from Swami Satchidananda: "If you run after things, nothing will come to you."

Read the post

// two

Ditch your to-do list and use these docs to make more impact

14 minutes | First Round Review

It's easy to get swept away by the quicksand of distractions from Slack notifications, unread emails and an ever-growing Read Later list. Luckily, we have a system or two that acts as an effective antidote. Learn how to focus on what actually matters with a collection of unique documents that will keep you grounded and accountable.

Read the article

// three

How to move faster as a startup founder

4 minutes | Medium

What’s one major reason why startups don’t move as quickly as they’d like to? They confuse activity with progress. These lessons - which extend beyond founders to include managers and leaders - can help determine which activities are productive, and which are just slowing you down. A few tips? Resist the temptation to do everything at once, create minimum viable processes and hire well.

Read the post

// four

Does my son know you?

10 minutes | The Ringer

We all know insurance is important — life insurance, car insurance, health insurance. But, after this young dad got a heartbreaking terminal cancer diagnosis, the most important form of insurance turned out to be relational: a commitment to forming deep bonds with people who care for you and who will show up for your family long after you’re gone. The only thing he’ll ask his friends in heaven: “Were you good to my son and wife? Were you there for them? Does my son know you?”

Read the post

// five

Twenty lessons learned

2 minutes | The Irrelevant Investor

Even as our portfolios get annihilated, there’s still much for us to learn. A few salient lessons to keep in mind in these turbulent times? Nothing lasts forever (including this drawdown), nothing is risk-free and nobody knows what will happen next. Furthermore, you’re not a genius on the way up or down — in fact, the more confident somebody seems, the more cautious you should be taking their advice.

Read the post


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ICYMI

LAST WEEK'S MOST READ

And finally, 2 brothers with a surprise reunion after 20 years.

With gratitude,

Khe

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