Skip to main content


Showing posts from January, 2023

The Benefits Of When Everyone Leads

It’s only January and the new book, When Everyone Leads , could likely be my pick for the best new leadership book of 2023. It’s that good. There’s still nearly a whole year ahead of us so we’ll see what other books debut. In the meantime, add this book to your must-read list.   You’ll learn that: Leadership is an activity, not a position. Leadership is mobilizing others to make progress on the most important challenges. Leadership is interactive, risky and experimental. Leadership comes in moments. Leadership is always about change.   When Everyone Leads , by Ed O’Malley and Julia Fabris McBride , presents a revolutionary approach to leadership; not based on position or authority, but an activity that anybody can undertake by learning to spot opportunities for improvement and taking the initiative to engage others.   “It can be unfamiliar and uncomfortable, but in a culture where everyone leads, organizations start to make progress on their most difficult problems,” explain t

100 Years Of Business And Leadership Lessons

Last year brought the release of the new book,  HBR At 100 ,  a  commemorative volume featuring the most influential ideas since the inception of the  Harvard Business Review .   As a celebration of the magazine’s   100th anniversary, this new book covers a broad range of management topics, including:   Disruptive Innovation Design Thinking Emotional Intelligence Racial Equality At Work Persuasion Leading With Authenticity Leading Change Communication   When  Harvard Business Review  first rolled off the presses a century ago, it became a welcome showcase of fresh ideas for the relatively new field of business management.   Since then, the magazine has published some of the most influential ideas in the history of modern business, and  HRB At 100 ’s collection of articles highlights many of them.   This is a goldmine of education for both experienced leaders and those new to their leadership role.   Thank you to the book’s publisher for sending me an advance copy of the book.

Don't Spin Your Team In Circles

A manager who can't make a decision or who can't make a timely decision will frustrate his/her employees. Equally bad, a lack of decision will impede the progress of the manager's team. Some managers make endless requests for data as a way to postpone their having to make a decision.  Employees end up spinning in circles , slicing and dicing the information far beyond what is truly needed for the manager to make a decision.  Some managers are simply afraid to make a decision in fear of making a "wrong" decision. These managers don't necessarily request needless data, but simply just never decide.  Successful managers gather the data from their employees, make any truly necessary follow-up requests (probing beyond what their employee may have researched/gathered on their own), and then make their decision...knowing that in virtually all cases most decisions are not black and white "right or "wrong," but are the best decisions made at that time fo

My Best Boss Did This

In their book,  Rapid Realignment , authors  George Labovitz  and  Victor Rosansky , reveal the most common responses from  thousands of managers and workers  when they were asked to think of the best boss they ever had, and then answer the question: " What did that person do to qualify as your best boss ?" And,  those most common responses were : My best boss listened! My best boss backed me up. My best boss trusted me and respected me. My best boss gave me feedback. My best boss left me alone. What else would you add to this list?

How To Harness Your Experiential Intelligence

“Experiential Intelligence provides a new lens from which to view what makes you, you—and what makes your team and organization unique,” says Soren Kaplan , author of the new book, Experiential Intelligence .   Kaplan explains that over 100 years ago, we established IQ (Intelligence Quotient) to predict success. Then we explored Emotional Intelligence (EQ), the theory of multiple intelligences, and mindsets that broaden the definition of smarts.   “Today, Experiential Intelligence ( XQ ) expands our understanding of what's needed to thrive in a disruptive world. While you can't change the past, your unique experiences and stories contain hidden strengths and untapped potential for the future,” explains Kaplan.   Experiential Intelligence is the combination of mindsets, abilities, and know-how gained from your unique life experiences that empowers you to achieve your goals. It allows you to get in touch with the accumulated wisdom and talents you have gained over tim

How To Use Failure As A Way To Success

“On the path to success, we trip and lose our footing from time to time. But stumbling and even falling is the best way to learn from mistakes and is critical to achieving goals,” says  Bill Wooditch , author of the book,  Fail More: Embrace, Learn, And, Adapt to Failure As A Way To Success . “We all fail. It’s a part of business, and it’s a part of life,” explains Wooditch. “It’s how you deal with setbacks is what makes the difference.” The book will teach you how to: Conquer the negative emotions that naturally arise after making mistakes. Clearly articulate lessons learned. Put these lessons to use immediately.  Plus, you’ll learn how to: Navigate all forms of rejection and failure in pragmatic ways. Rationally examine your personal fears and gain mastery over them. Shed the discomfort of uncertainty, which is the only way to open your mind to all possibilities.  Recently, Wooditch answered these questions for me about failing, succeeding and his book: Question :  We are often taugh

How To Break Through Barriers And Up Your Success

  Daphne E. Jones is the author of, Win When They Say You Won’t . She’s also a corporate board member who has held CIO and other leadership positions at Fortune 500 companies including IBM, Johnson & Johnson, Hospira (now Pfizer) and General Electric. She defied everyone’s expectations by adopting a mindset she recommends to everyone:  Believe you can win, when they say you won’t .  Drawn from her own rags to riches story, Win when They Say You Won’t: Break Through Barriers and Keep Leveling Up Your Success , is Jones’ highly reflective, deeply personal, inspiring guide and playbook to help readers achieve the career of their dreams with a winning mindset.  Jones shows how the right mindset and toolset can help you overcome anyone who doubts your potential for any reason. She shares tools to treat these issues as a business problem rather than getting caught in the trap of responding only emotionally or without a strategy.  Daphne E. Jones Using her stories and those of ot

Seven Tips For Making Better Presentations

  Before making your next presentation, consider these tips from Michelle D. Gladieux , author of the new book, Communicate With Courage :  Succinct stories that illicit emotional response are great hooks. Vary your voice to capture attention: modulate volume, rate, pitch, pace, and tone. Comparisons and analogies are powerful. Ask questions, such as, “What does what I’m sharing remind you of?” Use the questions to help your audience, smell, or sense what you’re describing. Repetition builds retention. State your most important point more than once. Move while you present. Make eye contact, a true show of courage. It’s a vital connection. If you don’t meet your audiences’ gaze, they are not likely to believe you. Pause occasionally to let all the great information you just said sink in. Add pictures and quotes into your presentations.  And, finally, ask others about what you did well and could have done better after you speak.

How To Overcome Four Common Challenges To Become A Better Communicator

“Raising your game as a communicator is one of the best ways to make a difference in the world, but it takes courage to open up to others and invite others to open up to you” says Michelle D. Gladieux , author of the new book, Communicate With Courage: Taking Risks To Overcome The Four Hidden Challenges .   Gladieux explains that those four hidden challenges and sneaky obstacles that can keep you from becoming the best communicator you can be are:  Hiding —Fear of exposing your supposed weaknesses. Defining —Putting too much stock into assumptions and being quick to judge. Rationalizing —Using “being realistic” to shield yourself from taking chances, engaging in conflict, or doing other scary but potentially rewarding actions. Settling —Stopping at “good enough” instead of aiming for something better in your interactions.  According to Gladieux, these challenges all have something in common. They require taking risks—to reveal yourself, question your beliefs, take a leap o

How To Help Your Team To Stop Drowning In Work

  In Nick Sonnenberg’s new book, Come Up For Air ,  (available February 7, 2023),  you’ll learn about his CPR Business Efficiency Framework , which stands for:   C ommunication P lanning R esources   This framework focuses on eliminating the pain points most teams experience by optimizing these three operation areas foundational to every organization. “In my book, I show you the tools that will boost efficiency in all three of these domains and I provide you with a detailed blueprint for the most effective ways to use them,” explains Sonnenberg. He further shares that some sections of the book may be more applicable to managers, and some may be more applicable to individual contributors. “However, it is still integral that both roles understand all of the concepts within the CPR Framework as each one benefits the team as a whole,” says Sonnenberg. As you read the book, you’ll learn what Sonnenberg has learned through years of building a leading efficiency consulting busine

My 10 Favorite Quotes From The 5 Levels Of Leadership Book

Here are some of my favorites quotes from   John C. Maxwell 's book,  The 5 Levels of Leadership  that I believe should become a   must-read book   by any workplace/organizational leader: Good leadership isn't about advancing yourself.  It's about advancing your team. Leaders become great, not because of their power, but because of their ability to empower others. Leadership is action, not position. When people feel liked, cared for, included, valued, and trusted, they begin to work together with their leader and each other. If you have integrity with people, you develop trust.  The more trust you develop, the stronger the relationship becomes.  In times of difficulty, relationships are a shelter.  In times of opportunity, they are a launching pad. Good leaders must embrace both care and candor. People buy into the leader, then the vision. Bringing out the best in a person is often a catalyst for bringing out the best in the team. Progress comes only from taking risks and m

Six Mindsets That Distinguish The Best Leaders

The key takeaway from the book,   CEO Excellence: The Six Mindsets That Distinguish The Best Leaders From The Rest , is the best CEOs think and act differently than the rest across each of   six key CEO responsibilities , including:  Setting the direction  (vision, strategy, resource allocation) Aligning the organization  (culture, organization design, talent) Mobilizing through leaders  (composition, teamwork, operating rhythm) Engaging the board  (relationships, capabilities, meetings) Connecting with stakeholders  (social purpose, interaction, moments of truth) Managing personal effectiveness  (time and energy, leadership model, perspective)  Starting with a pool of more than 2,400 corporate leaders, McKinsey & Company senior partners and authors  Carolyn Dewar ,  Scott Keller , and  Vik Malhotra  extensively screened the group to identify the elite core, then sat down with 67 of them for multiple hours to talk about their methods.  “Despite their different approaches, every CEO