Motivating People

August 14, 2012

Give People a Fine Reputation to Live Up To (and Don’t be a Jerk)

(and Don't be a Jerk)

Don’t be this guy.

It’s the humbling lessons you remember best.

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July 30, 2012

“Looking for the Gift”

Thanh made this photo for me for my 39th birthday. She gave me a much greater gift later.

Sometimes it’s the painful moments in leadership that lead to amazing learning.

In 2008 VietnamWorks started a professional networking business similar to LinkedIn.  It was called  We recruited a dynamic and talented young woman, Thanh, to start and run it.  Thanh was intimidated at first but quickly grew into the role.  She launched a good site and hired a great team.

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July 26, 2012

Glory in the Struggle

Building a business takes time.  And effort.  And pain.  Lots of pain.

“Oh sh*t, one of my top stars just quit.”
“Oh frack, the employee we fired for stealing is threatening legal action.”
“Oh cripes, the sales team made the same mistake again?!”

There are days when just going to work feels like a grueling crawl through the mud.  We’ve all been there.

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May 28, 2012

You Can’t Lock Up Your People

One of the dumbest things I see managers do is try to hang on to great people by blocking office access to job websites such as TheLadders, VietnamWorks or KiemViec.

Do these managers really think that blocking access at the office will prevent an employee from finding another job?  I mean, come on.  It’s ridiculous.

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May 20, 2012

Thanh Nguyen — Leadership is About Love

“Deep down everyone loves to have others love them…love is the emotion of wanting to be together, wanting to unconditionally support each other, wanting to understand and empathize, wanting to be there when things are tough and to be there when things are fun.”

Thanh Nguyen, Founder & CEO of


Welcome to my first video interview!

My guest was Thanh Nguyen, Founder & CEO of, the leading “Share to Succeed” business community connecting thousands of leaders and experts in Vietnam.

Thanh is a passionate, highly spiritual leader.  She is talented at communicating vision and motivating others to achieve greatness.

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May 7, 2012

Mistakes Are Painfully Fantastic

Chi with one of her marketing creations.

Have you or someone on your team ever made a painful mistake?

You know, the kind of mistake that makes you cringe with embarrassment?  That makes you feel like you got punched in the stomach?

Those are the best.

Painful mistakes are always fantastic learning opportunities.  Never let one go to waste.  And never punish someone for making a mistake the first time.  Always focus on the learning.

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January 31, 2012

“Ask Chris Anything!”

Go ahead – ask me ANYTHING!

No one wants to work at a place where they don’t trust the leaders.

A lack of trust will cost you dearly.  It will eat away at your organization like a invisible cancer.  Your people will  communicate ideas less freely, especially with you.  They feel less secure and less committed to the company.  People in such an environment are far less likely to achieve great things.

And you want to achieve great things, don’t you?

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January 15, 2012

Ducks and Eagles

Are you a duck or an eagle?

Here’s a video from a talk I gave at a Citynetevents networking event.  It’s about how there are two kinds of people on every team — ducks and eagles.  Each has a role on your team.  If you want to improve your leadership and create a great team it’s important to know who is who.

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December 13, 2011

Head to Head CEO Forum on VITV

Recently I returned to the “Diá»…n Đàn CEO,” or “CEO Forum” program on VITV.

Mr. Hà, the host, felt that the viewers would find two CEOs more engaging than one (maybe by creating some drama and getting us to argue?).  I invited an outstanding CEO I met a few months ago, Mr. Trần Trọng Kiên.  He is founder and CEO of Buffalo Tours, one of Vietnam’s largest and most successful tour companies.  Not only a great CEO, but a super cool and interesting guy.

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November 20, 2011

Catch People Doing Something Right

Ngoc Mai was so proud of her $2 Award she took this pic and put it on Facebook.

Want your people to achieve great things again and again?

It’s easy — catch them doing something right.  Make them feel good when they achieve something great.

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