Global Leadership Summit is a two-day event that is telecast LIVE from Willow’s campus near Chicago every August to more than 600+ locations in North America. Throughout the fall, Summit events take place in an additional 128 countries—translated into 60 languages. This is the 23rd annual Global Leadership Summit being broadcast around the world to more than 400K people.

Below are my notes for Marcus Buckingham:

Most research studies failure to learn how to be successful but I study excellence to learn how to be excellence. Excellence has its own pattern.

You learn nothing about excellence from studying your own failures.

Excellence has its own pattern, you have to study it to learn it.  If you study BAD and invert it you get not bad, that different from good.

How do we build more teams like our best teams? This is your job as a leader

This is your job as a leader. Your job as a leader is to understand what happens on the best teams so you can build more like them.

What happens on amazing teams?

The 8 Questions That Identify High Performing Teams


  • We: I am really enthusiastic about the mission of the company.
  • Me: At work, I clearly understand what is expected of me.


  • We: In my team, I am surrounded by people who share my values
  • Me: I have a chance to use my strengths every day at work


  • We: My teammates have my back.
  • Me: I know I will be recognized for excellent work.


  • We: I have great confidence in my company’s future.
  • Me: In my work, I am always challenged to grow.


The people in your community want two things: 

  • Make feel part of something bigger than Me.
  • Make me feel that I am special, unique.

Leadership is all about integrating the two sets of questions, the “we” and the “me”. Normally when spend more time thinking only about the “we” questions for our teams. When we think of leading most of the time we think of the ” we” questions.

Examples of different cultures

Apple: Their culture is a “we” culture built around creating technology for people who get geeked out.

  • The value of quality and beauty is predominant at Apple.
  • At Apple everything is pristine. The new building is a perfect circle.

Facebook: Speed to impact.

  • At their offices, it looks like they just moved in. yesterday and are moving out tomorrow.
  • If you want speed go to Facebook. Their rituals are all about speed.
  • They still have “Sun Microsystems” logos on conference room doors.
  • Facebook does a great job of making people feel like they are super interesting.

The Ways Your Values Are Communicated:

  • What stories do you tell?
  • What heroes do you promote?
  • What values do you promote?

The 8 Questions:

  • None of these questions are asking them to rate their leader on anything. We are bad at rating others.
  • They are rating their own experience.

Performance Reviews:

  • Performance Reviews trust that humans can rate other humans accurately, but they can’t.
  • Performance reviews do a terrible job of actually rating performance of our team members.
  • Humans are terrible at rating other humans.
  • All Performance Reviews are bogus.
  • My pattern of how I rate you follows me to everyone I evaluate.
  • We are unconsciously biased in our ratings.
  • 54% of my rating of you is a function of me.
  • I am not a good rater of you, but I am a rather good rater of me.

The 2 Most Important Questions:

  1. I have a chance to use my strengths every day at work.
  2. At work, I clearly understand what is expected of me.


There is a silver bullet to this problem. There is one thing that great leaders do.

Great leaders perform frequent strengths based check-ins about near term future work.


  • What are your priorities this week?
  • How can I help?

You must break a year down into 52 baby-sprints. It is your job as a leader to make sure Spring 37 is just as good as Sprint 1.  A week is special for us. Not once every 3 weeks, or 6 weeks but every week.

This is not about giving Feedback!

It’s not about feedback, no one likes feedback. We want attention, we want coaching attention. We don’t feedback, we want coaching, I want you to help me get better. Don’t tell me where I stand. Help me get better. You want to call it coaching or development.

  • Please pay attention to me frequently and help me get better.
  • Deep down, what people want is from us is us paying attention to them frequently in the work world.
  • If you can’t do it every week with your people you have too many people.

Me checking in with you is leading, all the other stuff is not leading


What is the whole purpose of work was to find out what you love?

  • Wouldn’t be great if work was like being in love.
  • The purpose of work is to discover that which you love.
  • If this were the case, the company would get all the things they desire; creativity, productivity, brilliance etc.
  • How do you find that which you love?
  • What do love and work look like?
  • Research: Love + Work= Road Trip


Here are a few of Marcus Buckingham’s Books:

Learn To Lead

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