Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 7 – Givers And Takers

Givers and Takers


Good morning leaders,

I hope you feel refreshed from the weekend and you are looking forward to a good week.

This week’s leader’s letter is about Givers and Takers.

Adam Grant the organisational psychologist is well known for his books, podcast and his TED videos.

Adam has created excellent phrases and uses very clear messaging (sprinkled with some humour) from findings and his studies to improve businesses and teach the next generation of leaders.

I highly recommend you watch his TED Talk Are you a giver or a taker?

The Givers and Takers talk and his findings really stand out and will stand the test of time.

As we have all been challenged recently humans show the best and absolute worst of ourselves. However some people have something baked into them that just cannot be shaken off. In problem raisers, problem solvers and problematics I break down in a slightly different direction.

The TLDR of the Adam Grant findings:

Takers are ‘what can you do for me’ people. You are likely surrounded by them. Takers progress in the short term and seem to be rewarded. Takers like the name suggest take and rarely think about those around them. Although they raise in organisations quickly, they drop just as quickly.

Givers on the other hand, are for the long game, Givers think about others, they want to improve those around them, they teach, they share, they bring others together for the right reasons.

To quote Adam….
“Givers make organisations better”

In this time of change, consider how you want to progress, how you wish for your people to understand you, your leadership and the culture you are trying to create or recreate with the ever changing landscape.

Right now is a great time to address existing issues and issues potentially bubbling up under the surface.

Find the Takers and consider how that one bad apple can really impact your team.

If you are a Giver who was burned, consider how you can embrace your giver side again. Attempt to remove or dilute that bad experience.

Remember when you picture a taker from the present or your past, they generally lose.

If you are a taker, I would recommend you look around you and see how quickly you have impacted the team and consider how you move yourself into giving more and taking a lot less.

Go and give!

Thanks and have a great week.

‍Danny Denhard

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 6 – The Power Of An Internal Motto

The Power Of An Internal Motto


Dear Leaders,

I hope you had a good and re-energising weekend and ready for the week ahead.

This week I read about how Steven Gerrard (the Liverpool football legend and current Rangers FC manager) created an internal motto for this players to easily understand their change in playing style and helped to guide the team towards winning an important away game in Europe and re-shape their season.

The Motto:
“Own the ball, own the pitch”

Why so effective?
Most likely because it is short, simple and easy to remember.
Yes, it is harder to execute no doubt, however, that is for the management team to create training plans around, train new formations and create playbooks for upcoming matches.
And for the players; to understand easily, to ask questions, to work on and train with in mind and develop their understanding of their teammates and develop their togetherness on and around.

So Why A Motto:
Simple is essential in today’s noisy, feed driven world.
Short helps everyone remember and repeat this and helps to have a guiding principle to follow and concentrate everyone around.

Focus On:
I challenge you and your fellow leaders to create (or revisit) one simple and short motto for your team to get behind and help to guide your team with upcoming changes and a way to understand how you are going to operate for the near future and how it will lead your decision making moving forward into 2021.

Let me know what your new motto is and how you decided your new motto.

Thanks and have a great week ahead.

Danny Denhard

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 5 – Beliefs And Bets

Beliefs and Bets


Dear Leaders,

I hope you had a positive weekend and ready for the week ahead.

Believe it or not, it is now Q3 and with more businesses opening up again, this week’s message is to revisit your beliefs and bets for the rest of 2020.

This year has been a challenge for everyone and business right now feel like they are constantly being dealt bad hands in poker.

There is a lot of luck needed but calculated risks and understanding of the game is essential.

I am currently reading Annie Duke’s ‘Thinking in Bets‘ and it aligns so well in business and in the current situation.

Beliefs are key to any business succeeding, what do you believe to be true, what do you believe will happen, where do you believe the industry will go and why.

Your bets should be the 3-5 big bets you are betting on and have confidence in delivering for the rest of the year.

Revisit the top ten (yes 10) beliefs, revisit your top 3 bets for the rest of the year and clearly and concisely articulate your belief and bets to the whole organisation.

Have a home and hub explaining the beliefs and bets and get creative in having a 101, FAQ’s and ensure it rolls up to your Focus Metric.

Focus On: Achieving buy-in by reintroducing the beliefs and bets and talking collectively about these.

Ensure everyone understands the ten beliefs and three to five bets, ask for total commitment to deliver these and by the deadline you and your teams create.

The mid way of every year is typically when people take their breaks and holidays so fatigue is setting in and this is the time for leaders to step up and energise the team.

Happily let me know how you map out your B&B’s and if you have any troubles, happily email me for support.

Thanks and have a great week ahead.

Danny Denhard

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 4 – Commit To Communicating Clearly

Commit To Communicating Clearly


Dear Leaders,

I trust this week has started off productively and you have identified your future seers.

This weeks point to focus on is communicating clearly and building a clear communicating culture.

The lack of information and ‘transparent’ communications often leads your teams to assume or fear for the worst outcome.
Agree to create a culture that enables and ensures you communicate as clearly and kindly as possible.

As a manager and a leader you will be well aware that the fear and panic amongst your people, your teams and department is often when an important piece of information is not communicate to the group, it is not clear and often sent without second order effects considered.

Focus on speaking to your organisation and the managers around you to ensure you cut through poor communication and create an agreed internal principle you will communicate as clearly and as timely as possible to remove anxiety and fear around the company, particularly with the near future in mind.

This will reduce the amount of questions you will receive, you can encourage improving internal communications and reducing the internal chatter via instant messenger.

Until next week, focus on building clear communication templates you and your teams can use and agree as a company wide principle you will have clear communications across the business.

Danny Denhard

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 3 – Future Seers

Future Seers


Dear Leaders,

I trust this week has started off productive and you have learned from lesson 1; developing your existing internal leaders and lesson 2; starting off projects and your weeks positively.

This weeks point to focus on is finding the “future seers“. This short five minute video will help to guide you on future seers.

There are many people in your organisation that live in the present and that is ok.
There are actually many more long serving staff members that live in the past and the past glories, who reminisce but struggle to grow and evolve with the future.

There are very few that can see and live in the future, these are the people who will drive your brand forward and guide you through the headwinds all of us will be fighting.

Until next week, focus on finding the future seers in your organisation and enabling them to start co-creating the future of your company and guide those around them who struggle to live in the near future.

Danny Denhard

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 1 – Develop Leaders

Develop Leaders


Dear Leaders,

Welcome aboard to the first leaders letter.

Each week there will be a weekly letter designed to help you address something important for the future and focus on moving forward.

If you have to read one piece of content this week, it is  to the LinkedIn team.


LinkedIn’s growth and development under Jeff’s guidance has been incredible and has strategically transformed LinkedIn from an occasional visit to a daily utility for many businesses and professionals.

If you haven’t already watched Jeff’s famous all hands from 2016, watch it at the bottom of this letter.

Future Focus
Something to remember this week, while looking forward to the future, ask yourself how are you looking to develop your existing staff.

It’s easy to look at the upcoming months and look at the list of objectives you want to hit, however, without your people in recent months the business wouldn’t be in the place it is today.

Help to develop personal growth plans together with your leaders and their teams.
Ensure you make and take the time with your managers to create personal development plans for each team member, fix dates and milestones in to understand the progress and how you can continue develop your team.

Until next week,

Thanks and have a good week.

Danny Denhard

Focus Leader

Leaders Letter Newsletter

Leaders Letter 2 – Ride Of A Lifetime

Ride Of A Lifetime


Dear Leaders,

I trust this week has been productive.
I have recently finished Bob Iger’s The Ride Of A Lifetime, it is a truly remarkable business and leadership book.

Why read (or listen) the book?
Bob tells his detailed account of his early career inside TV and TV production, his career progression from a young leader inside ESPN through to thinking he was going to be overlooked when COO at Disney to take over from previous CEO Michael Eisner. The book is full of life and work lessons, the pressure of work and being able to think clearly and for the long term.

Bob’s account is more detailed than his masterclass and much better value.

Bill Gates has also recommended the book and said “a business book I’d actually recommend”.

Something to take away from this book is:
‘Never start small’
‘Never start negatively’.

Wise words!

Focus On:
In the coming weeks it is going to be important to zoom out, think big and productively with possibilities.

Until next week, focus on starting big and positively.

Danny Denhard