If you didn’t know it LinkedIn allows people to post their own “blogs” on their site. It is a way to get more people engaged and get more visibility for LinkedIn. It also is an easy way for people to get their thoughts out to an auidence they may never connect with if they simply started blogging.

I take advantage of their service about once a week. I try not to overdo it.

Also, I don’t want them to have 100% control of the stuff I write. For instance. If they went out of business tomorrow the post I put up today would disappear. My intellectual capital on their site. I have zero control.

So – I’m reposting it here so I still have a link to – and ownership of the post. I hear it might hurt my SEO a bit but frankly – I’m not making money on this site so it’s not a big deal.

If you want to read it in its native habitat on LinkedIn – Click Here.

Otherwise…. without further ado… my post for your reading pleasure:


It’s Your Fault Your Employee Went From Exceptional to Ordinary

wpaulhebert blog imageYou didn’t plan on it. It just happened. You didn’t cause it to happen. You didn’t even want it to happen. But it did. That employee you hired a while back who was killing it every.single.day? They stopped being great. You noticed they weren’t getting any faster. Any smarter. Any better. You felt like they were phoning it in. The reports they did last week looked just like the reports they did this week. The ideas that blew you away before barely register as a breeze anymore. You don’t understand. Where did that exceptional employee go?

Now you’re faced with finding a new rock star. A new go-to gal/guy. A new person to make you all tingly inside when they put that dash of color on the charts and use 16:9 sized PowerPoint slides instead of that “old man” 4:3 version. You need to find someone exceptional.


And after you find your next exceptional employee here’s what’s going to happen.

Everything that I just described will happen again. Déjà vu all over again. THAT rock star will also become a tribute band and you’ll be looking around for new talent. It happens every day.

Familiarity breeds boring.

You get tired of the extraordinary. You get tired of the exceptional. Well, tired maybe the wrong word. You get “used” to it. It becomes ordinary.

Everyone Wants to Live On The Beach

Ever rented a beach house in the summer? Remember the feeling you had when you walked in and saw that view? Remember your first vacation morning when you got up, made your coffee, grabbed a danish and sat out on the veranda smelling the ocean air and sipping the coffee you swore was the best.coffee.ever. Now do you remember your last day at the beach? You rushed down the steps. Grabbed your luggage and threw it in the family truckster. You then went back into the house grabbed your go-cup of java, lowered the blinds on the windows that provided your view to the beach, locked the door to the veranda and paid zero attention to how freaking gorgeous the view was!

In 5-7 days you had already made the exceptional, ordinary.

I remember a story about an architect who, when building a house on the beach, created a very small window in a stairway that faced the absolute best view of the beach from the house. He didn’t create a 100 foot window facing that view. Just a small window. He said he did that on purpose so that the owners, as they walked up and down the steps would stand in awe of what was right outside their door. Framed by a small window in a less-than-accessible area of the house he figured the owners would never tire of the view – because it would never melt into the background. It would always be something that had to be sought out and selected. It never become the canvas. It would always be the painting.

The same can be said for employees.

The question you have to ask is do they get ordinary or do you stop seeing their exceptionalism?

Do you make the effort to view what they do through a different lens?

Do you work to pay attention versus letting their excellence simply create background noise.

Even Mozart and Bach played over and over on the elevator Muzak system can sound pretty ordinary. But take that same music, add a good scotch and some kick-ass speakers (with a sub-woofer of course) and turn it up to 11 and now you got something exceptional.

Don’t allow your employees to become ordinary.

If they are ordinary it is your fault.

Go spend reintroduce yourself to them again. Find what made them exceptional when you hired them. Rekindle that exceptionalism.

And then go do the same with your significant other. It is never the nagging. It is ALWAYS your lack of attention.

Whoda thunk it … My muse Phil Dunphy.