People Acuity Newsletter – August 2020

Leaders Can Influence Outcomes

America is at a critical crossroads right now – and its direction in the coming months will define what happens for the next generation. It’s easy to feel small in the bigness of what is unfolding, yet perhaps there is truth to this ancient piece of wisdom: “out of small things proceeds that which is great.”

  • When you strengthen your people, you strengthen your business.
  • When you strengthen your business, you strengthen the economy.
  • When you help the economy become stronger, it increases tax revenues.
  • When tax revenues are high, there is more government spending on healthcare and education.
  • When healthcare access and education is strengthened, so are living standards, life expectancy, and literacy rates.

The moral here is simple.  When you strengthen your people, its ripple effect can impact millions of lives.  You think you don’t make a difference?  Think again!

At People Acuity, we hold the belief that the world is not just going to survive this crisis in our history.  It will turn it into a great gift that will bless people beyond measure for years to come!  We believe in the power of ordinary leaders like you who strengthen their people in extraordinary ways to bring about this transformation, one the world is crying out for.

If you’re like most people, it may seem like your daily contribution is just a tiny drop of water, when what is needed is an ocean’s worth of drops. However, when you wholeheartedly strengthen others, it increases their willingness to also add their daily drops of contribution.  Granted, it takes a lot of drops of water to fill an ocean, but if every person worked to lift and strengthen others in their circle of influence daily, we would quickly have many oceans filled to overflowing.

University of Columbia researchers discovered that on average, most people have six hundred people who know them personally.  That’s not a huge number, but they also found that the average person’s circle of influence extends to a second and even third generation impact.  When you use your energy to strengthen and lift others, those people are more likely to positively affect their six hundred people – and suddenly your impact has reached 360,000.  Each of those people also has a circle of six hundred whose lives are indirectly touched by you.  That makes your third generation impact 216 million people!

You matter.  You are important.  You are more than just a little bit valuable.

It also means that if you’re a leader today, you can’t afford to think small or get caught in a negative downward spiral and stay there.  216 million people need you to bring the best you have to give and share it today.  If each of us does this within our circle of influence, and help others do the same, we’ll soon flood the earth with contagious hope, innovative solutions to real problems, and come out of this better and sooner than any of us thought was possible.  Are you in?  Every drop counts.

To strengthen your people and ignite their energy and performance, we’d love to offer your people a free 2-hour Self-Leadership workshop – no strings attached!  We can help you to help them stop the negative swirl and increase individual, team, and organizational performance. Contact us at or call 952-797-4917 to schedule.

Upturning Performance in Downturn Times

– Tame the Blame –

At a time when more than ever before businesses are running lean and trying to survive, leaders can’t afford to not focus their attention on those things that produce the highest return-on-investment of time, energy, and resources. This report is designed to help you do just that. Its purpose is to synthesize important research that reveals a major factor that is undermining the energy and performance of more than 83% of all employees and leaders today.

This will help you focus your attention on a significant root cause of poor performance and prevent expensive, time wasting approaches to transforming it. It will help you better see crucial levers of energy and growth that are especially relevant in today’s new economy.

View and Download the Report

5 Small but Effective Ways to Let Employees Know They Are Appreciated (COVID-Safe)

Everyone is going through a challenging time right now, trying to maintain some sense of normalcy through the COVID-19 pandemic. Your team members may be worried about themselves or a family member getting sick, and how they will cope if that happens.

Now is the perfect time to let them know how much you appreciate their contributions, and below are five small but effective, COVID-safe ways to do so.

Two Words to Recognize a Job Well Done

The purpose of one of the most meaningful and motivating verbal or written conversations you can initiate is to say ‘thank you’ to your team members. Don Draper in Mad Men had a different approach. When confronted by a highly effective and talented employee about never saying thank you, his reply was a very loud and angry “That’s what the money is for!” As you can imagine, this didn’t go over well with his hard-working protege, who left the advertising firm shortly thereafter. While this is a fictional portrayal from a TV show, it clearly illustrates a real-world desire to feel gratitude for working diligently. It is not only nice to hear, it may also be hoped for. There is no downside to sharing this impactful sentiment.

Everybody Needs to Eat

When a team is working together in an office, the company having food catered is always a crowd-pleasing surprise. During the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are working remotely and juggling home and career demands during the same hours, which means now is the perfect time to treat team members to a meal or snack delivered right to their houses. Something as easy and cost-effective as sending over a pizza for dinner means the employee doesn’t have to worry about making dinner that night, taking energy from stress and making it available to put toward work. For a fancier alternative that will require more individualized attention, consider utilizing apps that deliver servings of restaurant food, or home-delivered meal services for even more benefits to your team members.

Allowance for Remote Working Environments

It’s happened to every one of us – you sit down to work on a project at home, and either your child is suddenly hungry, your dog needs to go out, or something else unexpected happens in the household that requires immediate attention. Whenever possible, flexible scheduling should be a part of your business response to changes brought about because of COVID-19. For example, if a hard deadline needs to be met, as long as doing so would not cause the work to suffer, and any necessary collaboration can continue, allowing tasks to be completed when it is most convenient for your remote workers is a way to show trust, understanding, and support. Non-business hours might work better on some days for certain people – such as completing tasks after the kids are put to bed, or before the rest of the house wakes up – and a company being less stringent about when work needs to be in progress would be a great help.

Let Them Choose

Whether you believe “cash is king” or gift cards / certificates are the ultimate in convenience, giving team members a thoughtful surprise that they can customize to fit their preferences is always a great choice. Both are technically financial incentives, and usually done once a year for holidays, performance bonuses, or special events like birthdays or start date anniversaries. In this time of uncertainty, a little monetary boost can go a long way, not only for your staff. Many small businesses are struggling due to the continued mandatory closures intended to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus, and purchasing a gift card or certificate from them now adds resources to their coffers, which helps keep these economy drivers afloat until they can reopen to customers again. This idea to show appreciation is definitely a win-win for everyone!

Develop Team Members to Foster Community in COVID-Safe Workspaces

It cannot be overstated how important self-leadership, interdependence, and skills-based knowledge are, especially at this challenging time, when the team is more separated due to social distancing and remotely working. Encourage confidence, empowerment, trust, and purpose in your employees through giving them project ownership and mentoring sessions over video conferencing. Make time to develop then employ skill-based knowledge, and you will see improvements in not only your team’s ability to work together, but in every link of the chain as well. The spirit of working together as a cohesive unit even when not together creates opportunities for individual and team growth and development.

Please review our website for more information about developing your organization’s staff during the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. We offer virtual multi-session programs of the complete People Acuity journey, as well as free resource learning opportunities.

You Can Help Others Grow So the Business Will Grow – Even During COVID!

David Thompson, the CEO of a Canadian-based, company described the exponential growth of his business during the pandemic and after providing his people with a 6-session Self-Leadership virtual learning experience.  He came to the same conclusion that 7,000 other leaders in a June 2020 Fuzu study did, that Self-Leadership is the most important leadership skill of our day. 

It made sense to him as it did to them, and he has hard business performance numbers to back his theory.  He believed that his business would become stronger when his people were strengthened – and he proved it. Your people and business can too.

“According to my calculations, taking into account what we invested in the program and the growth it has produced in our business, it appears we have an approximate 5,000% ROI: for every one dollar spent, we got $5,000 back. It was definitely worth it!”

David Thompson, CEO
Factory Outlet Trailers, Canada

Here is what his people mastered as they moved through the interactive learning process:

  • Creative problem-solving skills: moving from powerlessness to possibility and solutions-thinking
  • Proactive accountability: igniting self-responsibility, energy, and performance
  • Management of negative swirl and ambiguity through wise strengths use
  • Growth mindset: exploring tools to Shift Up! interdependent thinking and enthusiastic self-engagement.

Find out for yourself! If you’re not yet sure if Self-Leadership really is a good fit for your organization, but are a bit curious about it, you can join a discounted public program or take advantage of our COVID rates to bring a pilot program to your company. Read more here.

7-Session Virtual Program Starts Very Soon

Self-Leadership: Shift Up Proactive Accountability


People Acuity’s Self-Leadership learning journey awakens the development of twelve skills, tools, and practices essential for effectiveness and committed enthusiasm at work under any circumstances.

All employees, from individual contributors to managers and leaders, will discover keys to self-direct their energy, engagement and performance as they focus on applying:

  • Proactive accountability
  • Tools for Increasing Work Joy (tools for creating self-engagement)
  • Practices to reduce toxicity
  • Strengths to reduce weakness
  • Individual purp ose identification as a self-motivation and leadership tool
Learn More

Team Member Profile

Steve Jeffs, DBA, MCC
Chief Invention Officer

Steve Jeffs is a Top 50 Global Coach, and holds a Master Coach Certification (MCC) and a Doctorate in Business Administration. He is on the faculty for CTI, is a former board member for the ICF, and has led People Acuity’s research for the past nine years.

Steve is culturally-dexterous, and has led training and executive coaching for Fortune 500 and Global 500 companies. He has a reputation as a trusted coach, strategist, and facilitator.

Read More About Steve

If you’d like to learn more about how People Acuity can help prepare your organization for our new world, please call us at 218.368.5770, email us at, or simply use the link below.

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