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6 Ways to Optimize Performance Through Openness & Accountability

Latest Articles

The 9 Defining Characteristics of the Ideal Organization

Sometimes when I’m talking with someone about The Human Element and the work we do, a listener will ask what it means to create the Ideal Organization – our stated goal. After all, they often add, Ideal is a subjective term. It can mean anything you want it to mean. If we commit to going … Continued

The World is a Lonely Place

We spend a great deal of our lives at work. When we feel connected to other people, fully alive, and joyful work is a pleasant and satisfying place to be. But, when we feel disconnected, separated, or even excluded it becomes a very negative experience. Building relationships and connection results in more satisfying experiences, and … Continued

Bootstrapping It: Using My Own Work to Write My Own TEDx Talk

Pull oneself up by one’s bootstraps: (idiomatic) To succeed only on one’s own effort or abilities. I was very surprised when my application to give a TEDx talk was accepted. There were 68 applications and only five open speaker slots, so I reasoned that something about my topic resonated. After speaking with a few people … Continued

Concordant Decision Making

“Will Schutz taught me one of the most useful techniques I have ever learned. As I drove home from the workshop, I wondered if I would ever use it. The very next week I saw my opportunity and have been forever grateful.” – Robert McNeil, Licensed Human Element Practitioner, Spring City, PA The technique to … Continued

Disruption Is A Good Thing


“I feel disrupted, in a very positive way.” It was the ending of one of our Human Element programs, and this participant looked around satisfied and thanked everyone for their assistance on his journey. And then it occurred to me, disruption is exactly what we’re offering—of people, humans, and the way we are with each … Continued

Hearing Isn’t The Same As Agreeing

An Essential Skill From Radical Collaboration® “I don’t think you’re hearing me,” she said. “Yes I am, but you didn’t get my point,” I said quickly. She was right, I really hadn’t heard her. Collaborative skills are crucial to any modern business team. If we compete with one another, it is very difficult to solve … Continued

Changing the Conversation


How many times have you had that conversation? You know the one. The one you dread. The one where that other person starts to talk too much, get defensive or angry, over explain, complain, criticize, etc. It’s easy to blame the other person. But it doesn’t change anything. It may seem counterintuitive, but the way … Continued

Live in Tarrytown: Ethan Schutz Presents at TEDx

Can’t You See I’m Busy Being Miserable? When we’re defensive, we’re trying to protect ourselves from something we know is going to be unpleasant. Though external circumstances may trigger defensiveness, it arises from fears we have about ourselves and how we may be perceived by others in those situations. Defensiveness can cause serious complications in … Continued

Has Your Team’s Creativity Well Run Dry?

Problem solving and creative thinking are essential in many fields. Whether you’re developing new technology, need a winning way to connect with customers, or have to sell a super familiar offering to a bored public in a new and exciting way, you need great ideas. Lots and lots of great ideas. Sometimes your team has … Continued

Is a Focus on Getting Things Done Actually Slowing Your Team Down?

In a results-oriented organization, meeting project benchmarks and delivery deadlines is always a top priority. Leaders and managers invest tremendous amounts of time, energy and resources to the question of productivity. Identifying and communicating common goals and emphasizing individual accountability are tried and true techniques – yet the lasting improved team performance that’s needed can … Continued