Musings from the CU Suite

Jan 20, 2012

20 Annoying Habits; Work with Greatness?

Written by Anthony Demangone

NAFCU was lucky enough to have Marshall Goldsmith speak at our Annual Conference a few years back. He gave a wonderful lecture that was based on his book, "What Got You Here Won't Get You There." 

After the conference, I read his book. One portion fascinated me.  It outlined 20 bad habits that hold many successful people back from being strong leaders. 

As I marched through the list, I started to groan.  I owned quite a few of those habits.  Habits 2 and 3 especially.

2.  Adding Too Much Value.  The overwhelming desire to add our 2 cents to every discussion.

3.  Passing Judgment.  The need to rate others and impose our standards on them. 

Guilty, and guilty.  Marshall's point was that these traits can be good in some situations.  But if you want to lead people (or exist in a happy marriage), they can be deadly.  

Marshall gives an example of why.  Adding value to a situation is good, right?  That's why we hire consultants, attorneys and accountants. We value information and insight.  But suppose a colleague comes to you with a great idea. Do you say "thanks?" Or do you say, "nice, but what about if we did this?"

By adding your two cents, you've stolen your colleague's ownership of the idea.  Your input may improve the idea a wee bit, but you've likely decreased the likelihood that your colleague will implement that idea with full gusto.

I'd recommend reading the book. It is a fairly quick read, and quite funny at times.  (Don't let your spouse read it, though.  He or she will likely highlight certain passages and hand it back to you.) If you don't have the time, Marshall does make the list of the 20 habits available here. 

I recommend reading that list every quarter or so.  It it chock full of good life advice.


Do you work with a superstar?  Consider nominating him or her for NAFCU's Professional of the Year. Each NAFCU member can nominate one person for the award, which goes to a non-CEO employee who exemplifies individual achievement, expertise, and dedication.  The award must be approved by the credit union's CEO.  If I were a credit union CEO, I'd make it a point to nominate someone.  Even if that person doesn't win, the nomination itself is a great way to show how important he or she is to your credit union's success.  A pat on the back or a hearty "thank you" can go a long, long way. 


My son Briggs has one habit that is anything but annoying.  Jumping on my bed with his favorite blanket, Ubba. 

More Jumping Please

May you find pleasure in the simple things.  Have a great weekend, guys.