How to Stop Rowing in Circles till You Sink


Fitting in is the path to regret. Leaders don’t fit in they stand out. Bureaucrats fit in.

Standing out is dangerous in some organizational cultures; you’ll get beat down till you conform. Conformity is death.

Positive impact confronts the sludge of stagnant organizations.


People of impact are known for something. Reputation establishes identity, improves impact, and advances potential.

Stop rowing your boat in circles till it sinks.

Not Known:

What are you known for? When people see you, what do they think? If you aren’t known for something:

  1. You’re stuck in can’t, won’t, or I don’t think so.
  2. You’re unfocused and spread too thin. Do fewer things so you can follow your passion.
  3. You’ve lost your dream.
  4. You can’t say no.
  5. You need everyone to like you.


Fame is not the answer. Be known for something in your circle of influence, that’s enough. For example, Doug Conant, former CEO of Campbell’s Soup, isn’t a movie star. But, he’s known for writing 30,000 handwritten thank you notes during his ten year tenure.

Influence grows when you’re known for something. Could it be thank you notes?

Something positive:

  1. Be known for positivity. Positive focus creates positive difference.
  2. Transform a negative into a positive. Skillfully move through brokenness to wholeness.
  3. Don’t get stuck in complications and deficiencies.
  4. Fix something in the community.
  5. Create solutions. Don’t be known as a nay saying scrooge.
  6. Tell others what you want to be known for.

Bonus: Being known for something is intentional not accidental. Persistently, fanatically repeat what you want to be known for.


My dream: When people see me, I want them to think, “Dan made my life better by helping me find and expand my potential.” I don’t want to fix people; I want to hand them tools.


What blocks people for being known for something? How can they rise above?

What do you want to be known for?


Don’t miss a single issue of Leadership Freak, subscribe todayIt’s free. It’s private. It’s always practical and brief.

Go to the main page of Leadership Freak by clicking the banner at the top of this page, look in the right-hand navigation bar, enter your email and click subscribe.  Your email address is always kept private.  Note:  if it doesn’t arrive, check your spam filter for a confirmation email.