Center for High Performance
CFHP Center for High Performance
Issue No. 17 July 16, 2012


I recently had the opportunity to talk about decision-making and other topics related to high performance on the radio show "GPS Your Career: A Woman's Guide to Success," hosted by Bonnie Marcus on New Sky Radio. (To listen to the entire show, click here.) In this issue, I'll discuss why the way leaders interact while making decisions is more important than you might think.

At the Center for High Performance, we've had some exciting developments to celebrate this month:

We've launched a new website at with a new look, new insights and easier navigation.

We have a new address and phone number:
40 East Chicago, Suite 183
Chicago, IL 60611

And finally, our new office in Dubai, under the leadership of Dr. Andrew Lee, is up and running (see box below).

Please take a look at our new site, and enjoy the rest of summer!

What Makes NetApp Unique?

Watch more CfHP videos.

Behavior Counts When it Comes to Good Decisions

The way you make decisions is as important as the decisions themselves.

Unless your executive team interacts in a way the promotes the free exchange of ideas, gives equal consideration to everyone, combines ideas (rather than shooting them down) and ultimately produces a genuine team decision, you will likely feel it in the bottom line.

All too often decisions emanate from the "smartest guy in the room," who browbeats the team into going along with his proposals. If a single individual is calling all the shots, chances are that the outcome won't be as good as it should have been.

In a highly complex business environment, there aren't right or wrong answers. But there's no question that answers resulting from great brains working together are most likely to work.

One of my favorite companies is NetApp, a data storage firm that for years has ranked at or near the top of Fortune's 100 Best Companies To Work For. If you watch a NetApp senior team meeting, you'll see vigorous debate and plenty of disagreement, but it's always respectful, never personal. It's about the business.

Participants are constantly asking, "What's the best decision for the business and the people who work here?" High-performance teams ask questions, listen to each other's points of view and often ask "why?" They assume their team members are smart, so they look for what's right about someone's idea instead of what's wrong with it.

I believe that a company can't be higher performing than the team that runs it. When CfHP consults with a company, we attend senior leadership meetings and observe how members interact and how they reach decisions. We do a behavioral cost-benefit analysis, determining whether the senior leaders' behaviors accelerate high performance or inhibit it.

I've had the privilege of working with leaders all over the world and I've never met one who was perfect. Most are just trying to do the right thing for the company and their employees. What CfHP can do is hold up a mirror and show leaders what's really going on within their teams and how the way they make decisions affects the bottom line.

Most senior leaders I've worked with admit to being unaware of their team's dynamics and the impact they have on the organization's performance. When we help leaders recognize those behaviors and the consequences for the bottom line, they begin to interact differently and the organization reaps the benefits.

Read more about how senior leadership teams can make or break an organization, and about the high cost of executive bullying.

Contact the Center for High Performance to learn more about our custom-designed, high-energy ADVANCES™. We can show you more effective ways of interacting and help simplify the decision-making process for your leadership team.


Dubai Office Takes Off

Under the leadership of President Andrew Lee, CfHP AMEA is in discussions with major organizations in the region about work environment audits, strategic leadership development and senior leadership team ADVANCES™. Industries include real estate, hospitality and infrastructure.

As part of Andrew's efforts to grow the AMEA region, he has started interviewing executives in the Middle East. He has learned that leaders in the region are planning for the time when the oil runs out and are aiming to develop a knowledge-based economy. CfHP is helping them move in that direction by facilitating the difficult conversations that could otherwise paralyze their businesses.

For more information or to set up an appointment, please contact Dr. Lee at +(971) 5581 66996.

CFHP Center for High Performance

40 East Chicago Ave, Suite 183 • Chicago, Illinois 60611 • T 312.867.7710 • F 312.276.4256
New site, new insights. Visit