1 Sure Way to Kill Your Job Interview

Kill Your Interview

Watch Your Words

He looked like the perfect hire on paper.

Relevant experience? Check.

Good education? Check.

Awards and accolades? Check.

References? Check.

Two interviewers in, he was impressing in a positive way. I was the third interviewer and asked him about his past employer.

That’s when everything changed.

His face immediately turned red. He took a deep breath. His jaw clamped shut and you could see the muscles in his face tense.

I suppose he could have recovered, but it only got worse.

He started to unleash his anger about how he was treated, who did what, why he left. There was an untold story and this was his chance to tell it.

Wrong answer.


“Silence is a true friend who never betrays.” -Confucius


Focus on the Positive

It almost never pays to malign your former employer whether on an interview or even within your social network.

Were you wronged? Let’s face it: no one cares.

And, when all is said and done, who is hurt more? You are. You become known as someone who is negative, someone who is bitter. It’s far better to say nothing.


“Saying nothing . . . sometimes says the most.” -Emily Dickinson


In my career, I have had the good fortune of working for some amazing companies. I learned from each one.

Incredible experiences. All positive. New skills. Lifelong friends.

I could choose to focus on the negative, too. But I choose not to.

I choose to celebrate what I learned along the way. And honestly, I really don’t have anything negative to say. My mind simply cannot grasp how anyone wouldn’t have a positive experience.

Choose to be positive. Describe your employer in positive terms. Explain what you learned.

You don’t have to be fake. You don’t have to give false praise. Be truthful, but focus on the positive.

Even the bad boss will have some positive attribute.


“Your attitude, not your aptitude, will determine your altitude.” –Zig Ziglar


3 Reactions to Your Complaints

John Wooden on the Difference Between Winning and Succeeding

Timeless Success Advice

Legendary basketball coach John Wooden shared some timeless advice for his players that not only applied to his team, but to all of us.

Though this legend has passed on, his many lessons and many quotes remain as timeless reminders of what success looks like. Some of his timeless advice:

  • Always be on time.
  • Be neat and clean.
  • Don’t use profanity.
  • Never criticize a teammate.
  • Have patience.
  • Have faith that things will work out if we do what we are suppose to do.
  • Don’t whine, complain or make excuses.
  • Do your best.

John Wooden didn’t cut corners, and he didn’t let his values slide in order to win. His consistency was legendary. I often read his inspiring quotes. He is known for winning ten NCAA national championships in twelve years. With his attitude and wisdom, I am certain he would have been successful at nearly any endeavor.

His many quotes continue to inspire. Here are a few of my favorite John Wooden quotes:


John Wooden Quotes


“If you’re not making mistakes, then you’re not doing anything.” -John Wooden


“Never mistake activity for achievement. -John Wooden

How to Navigate the Maze of Health and Nutrition Plans

Diet Diagnosis

Develop Your Personalized Health Plan


69% of adults and 33% of children struggle with their weight.

An estimated 50% of adults have pre-diabetes or diabetes.

Health care is an increasing financial burden for many people and businesses.

And every leader wants to be more effective, have more energy, sleep better, and make a bigger impact.

David Nico, PhD, affectionately known as Dr. Healthnut, wants to inspire all of us to live healthier. His new book, Diet Diagnosis: Navigating the Maze of Health and Nutrition Plans is a recipe for health. In his book, he patiently walks through all of the various confusing diet plans, explaining them in an easy to understand way that will help you make the decisions that are right for you.

I recently had the opportunity to talk with him about his research.


“Health is not valued until sickness comes.” –Thomas Fuller


Decoding the Diet Myths

There is so much conflicting news about health and diet. Your new book indicates each person is unique and needs a different plan. How do you know what is right for you?

Diet DiagnosisYear after year I walk into bookstores and see the same methodology in terms of diet and health book approaches to the lifestyle disease epidemic. It goes something like this, “Here’s my diet plan. Do my plan. It will work for you. I have testimonials to prove it.” Our society focuses on scales and pounds and we look for quick fixes. This only lasts for a short time in most cases. Once you finish the diet, you can just go back to your former lifestyle or take a magic pill.

The myth in diet and nutrition and the health industry is that one specific diet plan will work for everyone instead of a personalized approach for each individual based on their interests, preferences, situation, and lifestyles.

I go opposite of every other prescriptive diet and health book and encourage a lifetime personalized lifestyle approach which is much easier on the mind and healthier for the metabolism! Everyone needs a blueprint that works individually for their unique lifestyle. I show how to create an action plan, to listen to your body, add the right foods, and avoid problem foods or ingredients. Instead of giving you the fish, I teach you how to fish, so you will fish for life.


69% of adults and 33% of children struggle with their weight.


Weight gain. Our whole society is struggling more than ever before. Why? 

Weight gain is NOT the problem! We need to change how we THINK about our food and lifestyle behaviors. The truth is, we are gaining the wrong type of weight (fat). For example, an athlete may gain muscle weight but is fit with less inches compared to a dieter who weighs less but is unhealthy. Muscle weighs more than fat. Ultimately, we want to feel great and look great, and my self-leadership approach with coaching methodology shows how to think about food correctly which results in a lifetime lifestyle transformation.


“Everyone needs a blueprint that works individually for their unique lifestyle.” -David Nico


Eliminate these 3 Ingredients Now

Break the Rules and Upend Business As Usual

Under New Management

Upend Business As Usual


Should salaries be public?

Is it possible to eliminate the performance review process?

Should customers come second?

Do open offices work?


Most businesses have rules and practices that have developed over many years. Whether inherited from long ago practices or invented by the company, these rules often continue unquestioned.

My friend Dr. David Burkus is a business school professor and author who questions many common business practices. His research reveals that many of the rules are outdated, misguided, and possibly counterproductive. His research looks at the contrarian practices of companies such as Zappos and Netflix where the rules are being rewritten.


“Great leaders don’t settle for low levels of efficiency.” –David Burkus


From designing office space to eliminating annual performance reviews and unlimited vacation policies, David’s book ignites a debate and conversation.

Some of the “rules” may stand the test of time because they work while others may be held in place based solely on tradition. Regardless, his newest book, Under New Management: How Leading Organizations Are Upending Business As Usual, is a good reminder that it’s time to review all the rules and determine whether they still serve a valid purpose.


The Case for Change

David, in one book, you have assembled some of the most contrarian practices being used in business today. What led you to this approach?Under New Management

After I wrote my first book, The Myths of Creativity, in which I talked a bit about practices like hackathons and 20% time that spurred innovation, I started to get even more curious about the things innovative companies were doing that seemed unusual or opposite of best practices. As I travelled down that rabbit hole I found lots of people writing about why the ideas were unique and appealing, but no one was making the case for why these practices work so well. Since organizational psychology is my background, I started to look at these ideas through the lens of human behavior and found compelling reasons for why they might be better than best practices.

Do you believe many of our management practices and principles are outdated? Is this a global view?

Well that depends. As Daniel Pink rightly pointed out in Drive, the shift from industrial work to knowledge work left a lot that needed to change about how we motivate people. I think that shift has broader management implications, which I explore in Under New Management. So yes, if you’re organization does mostly knowledge work, it’s likely that your management practices are rooted in some outdated assumptions.


Ban Email and Increase Productivity

Let’s look at email. Does banning email really work? Do these techniques work in larger organizations? Doesn’t moving to other technology tools just move the problem and not address the fact that it is people, not the tool, that cause it?

Email is an amazing tool because it’s cheap and it’s asynchronous. But it’s a difficult tool for exactly that reason. It’s easy to send…so we send it far too much. And because it’s asynchronous, it moved us to a world where we’re always on. There are a lot of other tools that are also cheap and asynchronous, but it’s a matter of how the tool is used.

And yes, to some extent, it’s a people issue. The companies that banned email took a deep look at their communication needs and settled on another tool for internal communication. If you’ve looked at what your team’s communication needs are and email meets those needs….great. But odds are, there’s a better tool out there.


“Leaders are discovering that limiting email improves productivity.” –David Burkus


13 Counterintuitive Ideas to Upend Business As Usual

  1. Outlaw email.
  2. Put customers second.
  3. Lose the standard vacation policy.
  4. Pay people to quit.
  5. Make salaries transparent.
  6. Ban non-competes.
  7. Ditch performance appraisals.
  8. Hire as a team.
  9. Write the Org chart in pencil.
  10. Close open offices.
  11. Take sabbaticals.
  12. Fire the managers.
  13. Celebrate departures.


Eliminate the Performance Appraisal