Setting a goal is not the main thing

“Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan.”  –Tom Landry     With these short and precise words of wisdom, football great Tom Landry unlocks the reason why New Year’s resolutions fail with regularity.  Goals are as essential to success […]

You are Not Alone!

Many business owners begin to feel like giving up after running a business for a few years. It’s hard, stressful, and often unrewarding. 8 out of 10 small businesses fail within the first 18 months and another 50% of businesses fail within the first 5 years. These statistics are quite gloomy, leaving us asking the […]

Unlocking The Team’s Potential

I have been studying the psychology of performance with renewed interest this year, and came across this quote from Abraham Maslow. “The story of the human race, is the story of men and women selling themselves short.” We have amazing work to do at XM Performance.  Nothing is more fulfilling than watching men, women, and […]

The Magnificent Seven

The business owners who invest in our Leadership Forums often find the process so valuable that they participate in a group for several years.  An interesting phenomenon is at work here; people need reminding more than they need instruction.   The basics of building a solid, profitable business are simple, but not easy.  Our experience […]

I get all my business word of mouth

We work with so many amazing people and businesses. Frequently after hearing an inspired story of excellence, we look through financials that show years of little or no growth. When asked about Marketing and Sales, we often hear with boldness, “We get all of our business word of mouth.” After making the gentle observation that […]

Take a Second Look

I have a BS in Mathematics. As an undergraduate, I initially struggled with the liberal arts courses that did not have problem solving and scientific method at their core. After reading a book on study habits, I started making a second, handwritten copy of my lecture notes before the next session of each class. This […]

Put It In Writing: Business Planning that Works!

Only a small percentage of small business owners have a written business plan (studies show around 3%).  The same research notes that the businesses with written plans and clear communication are consistently market leaders.   None of this is new.  Basic leadership requires creating vision and charting the course forward.  Common knowledge, but not common […]

Admitting When You Need Help

When I casually encounter a business connection and ask how things are going, I rarely get the truth. Most of the time I get some version of this response: “Been really busy”, or “business is great”. Most business owners don’t want to admit that something is going wrong inside their business, this is most likely […]


If a leader has no vision and no plan in writing, the first step of the process is to work on creating the vision.  Once you have created a clear and compelling vision, the question becomes, how often should you communicate vision? (Click here for a free tool to help you get started)   Our […]

Clear goals, plus timely and effective feedback lead to top performance.

Another cornerstone of effective delegation is the Rhythm & Routine of leadership communication. After the vision, plan, and work are clear, make sure key performance data can be measured. Is your team growing revenue, becoming more efficient, lowering costs, and increasing profit? If we communicate these results weekly we will have great months, quarters, and […]