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Here, in no particular order, are thirteen things I’ve learned about trust and how we need to wield, build, and protect it as leaders.

1. Trust is a decision at first and a reward later on. What I mean by this is that when you first enter a professional relationship, you need to decide immediately that you (cautiously, sure) trust this person to have good intentions, to care about the work, and to do their job well. As the relationship progresses, they will prove you right or wrong. And the reverse is true as well. You will prove trustworthy or not. But the trust (or lack thereof) you convey to them will set the stage for the rest of your relationship.

2. Vulnerability combined…


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In my last post, I talked about the importance of trust, and the underlying vulnerability that enables trust, in high-performing teams. I posited that behind almost every difficult interpersonal situation there’s a faulty trust dynamic. And I suggested a methodology for identifying the trust dynamic at the root of issues.

That’s all great, but what if you’ve lost the trust of your team or your peers? What can you do?

Hitting the reset button when trust has been damaged is difficult, but it can be done. It takes a lot of vulnerability and a willingness to see yourself and your…


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As a new leader, you’re apt to encounter some of the following scenarios:

1. You inherit a team. You have no idea how much supervision your team members prefer or require. You’re afraid of micromanaging them, but also worried you won’t give enough guidance.

2. Your team isn’t meshing together well. There’s a lot of backbiting and politicking and suspicion and finger-pointing. Everyone is looking for the “me” angle. People seem more invested in protecting their own interests than in collaborative work. You have no idea how to hit the reset button.

3. When you conduct 1:1’s with people, they’re…


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Recently, a friend of mine posted a meme on Facebook. It was a takeoff on sports tournament brackets, but instead of sports teams, it was a head-to-head matchup of overused business jargon. All the usual suspects that people like to roll their eyes about were there: “circle back”, “synergy”, “lean in”, “deep dive”, and so on. (Full disclosure: I use all 32 words in the bracket, and I’m not sorry.) Most of them probably are overused, to be sure. There was one word, though, that made me gasp in that “How DARE you?” …


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The Coronavirus is creating a lot of first-time remote-team managers right now. And for good reason: It’s time to send your teams home. You can’t afford not to. Society can’t afford for you not to. We have to flatten the curve.

I’m here to help. I’ve been managing remote teams (and an entire remote company) for sixteen years. I’m passionate about this subject, and I absolutely love running a company remotely. It’s definitely different than co-location, though, and there are pitfalls to avoid. Recently, someone I mentor asked me to jot down my top 7 pieces of advice for remote…


The other day, I was talking with a girlfriend and I casually mentioned that I’ve been dealing with some anxiety lately. “Oh, man…me, too,” she said. “Perimenopause is horrible! I can barely leave the house sometimes.” As the conversation progressed, we realized that so many woman we know are going through something similar, but most of them are very quiet about it, admitting it only to very close friends.

When my friend acknowledged that she, too, had suffered, I instantly felt less alone, and much more empowered. I started to think about other difficult experiences that are so common among…


Be like this hero.

Let’s face it: making big decisions is hard. If you’re in a position to single-handedly make a strategic call that could result in failure (which is basically all strategic calls), that’s a lot of pressure. But if you’re a leader, or aspire to be one, that’s exactly where the rubber hits the road. The dividing line, the difference between leaders and staffers, is the ability and willingness to make decisions.

When I conduct employee reviews, I ask staffers to fill out a self-assessment form that includes the following question: “Do you consider yourself a leader or a contributor, and does…


A few years ago, I found myself in an exciting and challenging position. I’d just finished reading The Lean Startup by Eric Ries, and I felt like I’d just been given the keys to the proverbial castle. I was absolutely certain that this methodology had the potential to change our organization and the way we pursue our mission, and man, did we need the help.

How many times can the word “Lean” appear in one post?

A little background…

I’d been with Adopt-a-Pet.com for about eight years by then, and my title was Executive Director, which is a typical title for someone who leads a nonprofit organization. And that’s what we were: a charity…

Abbie Moore

Socially-conscious product leader, Lean Startup evangelist, COO and Chief Product Officer at Adopt-a-Pet.com

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