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Focus 2023 - Goal Setting

The start of the new year is a temporal landmark. Temporal landmarks allow us to reset and have a fresh start.  This is an excellent time to establish goals for yourself.


A big part of the success of achieving goals is our level of personal motivation.    There are two types of goals: ‘want to’ – goals that we deem are important to us and ‘have to’ – a goal someone else requires or expects.   The level of motivation is much higher for ‘want to’ goals as it fits into our values and identity and is essential to us.   With a ‘want to’ goal, you will be more conscious of the obstacles to achieving the goal and stay away from them.    


Many consider training a ‘have to’ goal as they feel the company mandates it.  For example, you may have received training on Leader Standardized Work (LSW).  A tactic for providing a better focus on ‘have to’ goals is trying to reframe the training, so it better fits your values and identity. For example, maybe one of your values is being a conscientious leader.  Executing the elements on your LSW may help you support this value.  Another strategy is to pair it with something more enjoyable, such as setting out an LSW task to engage more with your team members.  Finally, replace the goal of implementing LSW with something more meaningful for yourself that may accomplish the same. For example, you still follow the LSW format but use one of your LSW tasks to support a personal goal.   


Please let me know what you think.

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Tips on leading through the 'temporary' normal - Create the Future

One of my favourite management thinkers is Peter Drucker.


One of his many philosophies is “The best way to predict the future is to create it”.     


In simple terms, it is up to you on how your future will unfold.  By coming up with ideas about what you want to achieve, you begin to plan. As you plan, you begin to take action. As you take action, you begin to create your future. 


As we approach the new normal, it is more important than ever for both individuals and organizations to embrace this thinking.  


Keep improving. 


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It is a good time to engage our teams in identifying improvements

For most of us, we are now in week 4 of the ‘new normal’.   It also appears that we may be in our current situation for the unforeseeable future.  One of the last things we typically think about in an uncertain situation is continuous improvement. 


As we get used to our new working environments, we develop habits, tools and methods that help make our work easier.  We also identify those things that make our work more difficult. In a continuous improvement culture, we encourage our team members to share and adopt these best practices.   As well, we also encourage our teams to identify the blockers in how they perform their work and possible solutions


As a leader, now is a good time to engage our teams in identifying improvements and best practice sharing in the ‘new normal’.  Ask a few simple questions – what have we learned? What are we doing that works well? What is blocking our ability to be more effective?  Remember to engage your team in solutions, get them involved with the implementation and don’t take all the work on yourself.


Please let me know your thoughts.


Keep connected.



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Tips on Leading Through Uncertain Times - Lead with Empathy

It goes without saying that this is an extremely trying time for all of us.  We are all experiencing a high degree of emotion as we try to understand and navigate what this change means for us.   Now more than ever it is critical to Lead with Empathy – to walk a mile in an other’s shoes to get an understanding of what they are experiencing.  


How we react as leaders and organizations will be remembered by our people long after the world resumes to whatever the new normal will be.   It is important that we don’t leave our team members, our customers and our communities with the impression that we have an ‘empathy gap’ or that we do not care.  


Here are a few things you can do to help avoid the empathy gap.   


1. Communicate with simple, clear and sensitive messaging. The fewer words the better as it leaves little room for interpretation.  Approach the message from the position of those that will receive it and try to anticipate their reaction.


2. Keep the goal clear and your communication focused.   Always keep in mind our team members safety and what we are actively doing to help our organizations come out of the crisis as best as we can.


3. Connect at all levels of the organization to understand the climate or mood of all our team members. Don’t just depend on your immediate team for their interpretations, go and see (virtually) different areas of the organization.


4. Be seen and heard.  Make sure that people can see you when you speak whether in person or by video and speak without notes were possible.  


Please let me know your thoughts.


Take care and keep connected.



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Introducing High Performance Leaders

HPL Partnership Disrupts Leadership Development Industry

High Performance Leaders Inc. (HPL) announces new partnership to develop Effective Leaders that create long term sustained High Performance cultures.


Kitchener-Waterloo, ONT, June 28, 2019-- Scott Smith, a leading Continuous Improvement (CI) coach and president of the HPS Consortium, alongside Glenn Sommerville, a proven industry CI executive, have formed High Performance Leaders Inc. to help organizations create and sustain High Performance Cultures. HPL offers its clients effective and practical methods to develop the necessary skills and habits to create strong and committed leaders and effective management system structures along with a culture of respect and trust.  


A highly engaged and motivated employee is the most formidable weapon that an organization can utilize to compete and win. An engaged and motivated employee is more focused on doing their work, more productive and is more likely to have a better work and home life.  However, less than 30% of an organization’s people fit this category. Less than 5% of organizations sustain High Performance over the long term. HPL offers a unique skill development program with coaching support from proven Leaders during and after the program. HPL also offers support by a community of peers with the same focus of accelerating learning and sharing of best practices. HPL’s Effective Leader development program raises the bar to drive long term and sustainable performance within organizations.


Scott Smith has been coaching and developing thousands of organizations and leaders as the president of HPS Consortium for over 18 years. Through his life-long commitment to CI, Scott has provided support to consortium members to apply what they learn from benchmarking, collaboration and exchange events. He has created and led cross-organizational improvement teams and developed relationships that resulted in the acceleration and sustainment of the consortium member’s CI journeys. Scott has developed proven methodologies to help members continually evolve their thinking. 

Glenn Sommerville has been leading transformational change and CI across multiple industries at highly successful companies such as Honeywell, Toyota, BlackBerry and Amazon. Through his time with Toyota, Glenn learned the hard way what Toyota Production System (TPS) really meant and earned his stripes in CI on the manufacturing floor through daily management and rigorous hands-on training and development in Japan by TPS experts.  Glenn’s strong passion and practical approach to CI and culture change has facilitated best in class performance from the teams and organizations he has led.  


High Performance Leaders Inc. is developing the World’s Highest Performing Leaders.


If you would like more information about this topic, please contact:


Scott Smith                             Glenn Sommerville

519-502-9394                         519-504-1435

SSmith@hpsinc.ca                 GSommerville@hp-leaders.com

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Congratulations Front Line Leader Graduates

Congratulations to our Spring 2016 Front Line Leader Development graduates.


You are now part of a proud HPS Consortium FLL alumni.  Since 2007 FLL has developed and graduated over 1000 leaders andequipped them with the skills to create a high performance culture and engage their teams in Lean Thinking.  


Thank you to this sessions supporting organizations - Areyon Labs, Atlantic Packaging, Bell Mobility, Cambridge Brass, Dimplex, Precision Resource, Rockwell Automation.

The fall 2016 FLL session is quickly filling up.  Please see our events page to register.  



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Scott Smith
January 9, 2023
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