Igniting the Future: 35 Insights to Excellence — Feb 2024

Indulge me for a second: after nearly 10 years with the “PENworks” label, our annual conference is now igniteEX. Why the change? “Ignite” captures the essence of the conference -- it’s about inspiring change; sparking ideas and innovation; improving processes, people, and outcomes! After hosting years of successful conferences, we've seen first-hand the energy and [...]

2024-02-29T08:45:48-06:00February 29, 2024|

14 New Year’s Resolutions for Professional & Personal Productivity, Health, Happiness — Jan 2024

As we start a new year, many of us set personal, professional, and organizational goals.  But research shows that up to 80% of New Year’s resolutions are broken, and that the average date of breaking resolutions is about January 20 (that’s why the gym is so crowded the first two or three weeks in January [...]

2024-02-29T07:46:31-06:00January 24, 2024|

Performance Excellence Network & Iowa Quality Center Announce Partnership

Performance Excellence Network & Iowa Quality Center Announce Partnership Collaboration Provides IQC Members Access to PEN Resources, Supports Performance Excellence throughout Iowa   ST. PAUL, Minn., December 13, 2023 – The Performance Excellence Network (PEN) and the Iowa Quality Center (IQC) today announce a partnership that expands the mission of both organizations throughout the Upper [...]

2023-12-11T15:53:36-06:00December 11, 2023|

Learning from the Future: How to Plan for Tomorrow When Everything Has Changed Today — Nov 2023

I was having a conversation with a colleague recently about how the world has changed the last several years.  Think about the fundamental shifts we have collectively experienced, many brought on by the pandemic but many because of other things.  For example, how many of us knew what Artificial Intelligence was just a year ago?  [...]

2023-11-27T12:14:37-06:00November 27, 2023|

Why Good Organizations Sometimes Fail — PEN Sept 2023

I get asked occasionally what is the single biggest reason organizations fail.  Of course, there isn’t one right answer: organizations -- even from the same sector or industry -- have different cultures, different core competencies, different strategic challenges and advantages, different circumstances that contribute to success or failure.  As a result, some organizations struggle with [...]

2023-09-20T14:28:45-05:00September 19, 2023|

Exploring Life’s Priorities: Rocks, Pebbles, Sand & On Being a Time Billionaire — Aug 2023

During the COVID years, we were all given the opportunity to reflect on our mortality and on what’s truly important in life: our fast-paced daily routines came to an abrupt halt, allowing us to recalibrate -- to refocus on the priorities in each of our lives. But, while COVID isn’t over, most of us have [...]

2023-08-25T06:33:01-05:00August 22, 2023|

Overwork, Underperform: Why More Hours Leads to Less Productivity — PEN Dec 2018

People are overworked.  Maybe it’s because we reset after the last recession and are all asked to do more with less.  Maybe it’s because 10,000 Baby Boomers are retiring EVERY Day, forcing all of us to do more with less.  Maybe it’s because wages really haven’t kept up with inflation the last 30-40 years, forcing [...]

2018-12-18T16:24:04-06:00December 18, 2018|

The Power of Professional Gratitude — PEN Nov 2018

The year was 1623.  About half of the Plymouth colony died that year.  And while the community was about ready to head into another difficult winter, recent fall rains ended what was a challenging and persistent drought.  So Governor William Bradford called a gathering – a three-hour “staff meeting” of sorts.  The main purpose of [...]

2018-11-26T19:22:44-06:00November 26, 2018|

Keeping Score: Best Practices in Organizational Measurement — PEN Oct 2018

If you don’t know it, I’m a diehard Kansas City Chiefs fan.  Third generation season ticket holder (yes, while living 400 miles away in Minneapolis).  And if you’re not into football – or just not fully aware of what’s going on in the NFL this season – the Chiefs are in the middle of what [...]

2018-10-29T16:08:49-05:00October 29, 2018|

Adapt or Die: Most Corporate Failures are Self-Inflicted — PEN Sept 2018

What do the American mastodon, Woolly mammoth, and Arizona jaguar all have in common?  Here’s a hint: they all suffered similar fates to Hostess Brands, Circuit City, and Blockbuster.  Yes, they all went away.  Extinction.  Vanished.  Disappeared.  But I think the companies could all take a lesson from the animals that died before them: organizations [...]

2018-09-24T21:07:31-05:00September 24, 2018|
Go to Top