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Feeling overwhelmed? Get clear on what’s important


Feeling stuck?  Swimming against a tsunami of demands with no hope of moving forwards?  You’re not alone.  Many of the CEOs I coach are struggling to see the wood for the trees.  Particularly at the moment.  The economic crisis of recent months has produced an overwhelming workload.  Business leaders are feeling burnt out and exhausted. 

Never has it been more important to step back and get clarity on what’s really important.   A small investment of time now will make a massive difference to your future success. And it will help you steer through the rough stuff into calmer water.

Taking Charge By Letting Go with L. David Marquet

“The journey of leadership is a journey to irrelevance. It has to be. Otherwise you’re just a do-er, you’re an individual contributor like everybody else.”

The problem with military command is that when you say ‘jump’, your subordinates are supposed to say ‘how high?’, regardless of the danger or the stupidity of the order. L. David Marquet realised there was something fundamentally wrong with this form of blind leadership when he took command of the USS Santa Fe, the US Navy’s submarine with the worst morale out of all its ships.  He didn’t know his way around this submarine, he wasn’t trained on it, but he was still expected to command it. He realised that the only way to take control and quite literally turn the ship around, was to adopt a radical approach to leadership. 

David decided to empower his subordinates as they knew far more about their day to day roles than he did – he told them to take ownership of their decisions. He needed the ship to manage itself. His revolutionary approach to leadership went against everything he’d been taught, but it worked. In the three years under David’s command, the Santa Fe rose from the bottom of the ranks to being the number one ship in the US navy. 

In this latest episode, David shares his story – how he had to park his ego in order to succeed and how he relinquished control in order to take command. This is a truly fascinating conversation with actionable insights. We hope you enjoy it as much as we did. 

“I used to be a control freak. Well actually, I’m still wired to be a control freak. But I’m trying to get over it.”

News from the farm

Foundry Farm Entrance Sign


It’s the final countdown for our Scaling Up Summit and Workshop. In pre-COVID-19 times, you might normally have already attended a few energising business events. Now, you’ve done a few online, but the experience is not the same. Is it? Well, that’s been our experience.

That is why we are launching our Scaling Up Summit and Workshop here on the Farm, near Salisbury. In September the children will be back at school. It’s time for us to be back to work, back to GROWTH! In our Scaling Up Summit, you and 99 other business leaders will spend a day working on your business, being inspired to think differently and building momentum into 2021.

If you already are a Monkhouse & Company client, don’t worry! We’ve saved your team a seat at the Summit! 

The Summit will be a high impact mix of fast-paced, full of energy 20-minute talks, followed by 45-minute workshops, so you can go away with the practical knowledge to take your company forward. This event will help you pivot your business and inspire you to get the energy back into your team.

We have carefully curated 9 inspirational speakers that our current clients have found of great value for their businesses. They will talk about core customers, strategic positioning, innovation, productivity, and more. Some of them have been guests on The Melting Pot podcast, including Shannon Byrne Susko, Justin Roff-Marsh and Nic Marks. 

The following day, we’re holding a Scaling Up Workshop. Bring your team to our one-day Scaling Up Workshop, where you will get the clarity you need to move forward, by identifying your strategy and achieve your 3-Year Highly Achievable Goal (3HAG). After this highly practical session, your team will leave with a clear-cut understanding of the purpose and core values that make your company unique and valuable. The team will have the opportunity to take part in the decision-making to implement the tools and best practices to define and enforce a clear 3-year plan to scale up your business.

Further info and booking for the Summit HERE

Further info and booking for the Workshop HERE


Making Space is about the relationships we have with spaces, both physical and intangible. In this podcast, Carlo Navato makes space with a wide range of guests. These are free-form conversations about design, building and creative living. Imaginative spaces help us flourish. They allow room for new possibilities and ideas to emerge. It’s about open spaces and open minds. Carlo is a passionately curious property developer, photographer, and a founding partner of the Do Lectures.


It’s August, and you know what that means. Leadership teams are launching annual business planning and budgeting processes, all too aware that the current year’s plans went kaput sometime around March thanks to the pandemic.


As researchers and drug companies race to develop a vaccine for COVID-19, the global economy continues to struggle to gain a footing. Every scrap of good news — say, a surprising pocket of strength in a particular sector — is matched by a sign of ongoing weakness elsewhere, raising questions about the long-term viability of certain companies and industries.


How was lockdown for your teams? Are they feeling stressed and isolated? Or has working from home turned out to be a productive, commute-free, work-in-comfy-clothes revelation? One thing seems certain: This global, flexible-working experiment has changed our professional routines, probably for good. In PwC US’s Remote Work Survey, conducted in June, 39 percent of U.S. executives said most of their office employees were working remotely at least one day a week before the pandemic. But during the COVID-19 crisis, almost everyone who could work exclusively from home did so.


We’re excited to share with you a new book from one of our favourite leaders. Bob Glazer, entrepreneur and Wall Street Journal bestselling author, has just released his latest book, Friday Forward.  This is a curated collection and update of the 52 most impactful stories from Bob’s inspirational email newsletter of the same name. Each story shares a vital leadership lesson inspired by great thinkers like Tim Ferriss, Brene Brown, Adam Grant and others. Friday Forward started as a note to Bob’s team of 40 at his company and has grown into an international series read by over 200,000 people weekly across 60 countries. Friday Forward is a necessary source of positivity and inspiration in a year marked by negative news and divisiveness. It challenges readers to make lasting change in their lives, and to give positivity to their circles as well. We all can benefit from a bit more inspiration, and this book provides plenty of it. This is a must-have for anyone who wants to achieve more or help others to do the same!


When Execution was first published in 2002, it changed the way we did our jobs. By analysing the discipline of getting things done, it helped thousands of business people to make the final leap to success. Now, Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan reframe their empowering message for a world in which the old rules have been shattered and radical change is becoming routine. For the foreseeable future:
– Growth will be slower. But the company that executes well will have the confidence, speed and resources to move fast as new opportunities emerge.
– Competition will be fiercer, with companies searching for any possible advantage in every area.
– Governments will take on new roles in their national economies. And companies that execute well will be more attractive as partners and suppliers, and better prepared to adapt to new waves of regulation.
– Risk management will become a top priority for every leader, and every company will be looking for the edge in detecting new internal and external threats.
Forget formulating a ‘vision’, then leaving others to carry it out: Execution shows you how to link together people, strategy and operations – the three core elements of every organisation – and create a business based on dialogue, intellectual honesty and realism.



There are too many incompetent men in leadership positions – in large part because businesses tend to promote people on the basis of charisma, confidence and even narcissism. Instead, companies should be putting people in charge who demonstrate competence, humility and integrity.

Upcoming Events

Monkhouse & Company Summit, Foundry Farm near Salisbury – 15 September 2020

Join us for a day of learning, development and fun. We’ll be hosting 9 keynote speakers to talk about culture, strategy and execution.  They’ll also facilitate a workshop to help you put into practice what you’ve learned. Confirmed speakers include: Shannon Susko, author of 3HAG Way; Justin Roff-Marsh, author of The Machine; and Nic Marks, founder of Friday Pulse and the Happy Planet Index. We’re excited to see you here!

Scaling Up Workshop, Foundry Farm near Salisburys – 16 September 2020

Looking to get back on track because COVID-19 disrupted your plans? Join us with your leadership team for a one-day Scaling Up Workshop. Get the clarity you need to move forward, by identifying your strategy and achieve your 3-Year Highly Achievable Goal (3HAG). After this highly practical session, your team will leave with a clear-cut understanding of the purpose and core values that make your company unique and valuable. The team will have the opportunity to take part in the decision-making to implement the tools and best practices to define and enforce a clear 3-year plan to scale up your business.

Acetech Summit, Whistler – 14-16 October 2020 (re-scheduled)

An exclusive annual gathering of high-growth tech CEOs. This powerful three-day summit will transform how you define success and deliver growth in 2020 and beyond.

Quote of the week

‘There is nothing so useless as doing efficiently that which should not be done at all.’ 

Peter Drucker

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