Is Your Culture Built On the Right Foundation?

Ask a strategic consultant about the value of a strong organizational culture and she’ll likely remark: “Culture eats strategy for lunch!” Her reasoning is usually based on the consistency of behavior that strong culture creates – enabling every associate to make “the right decision” even when the leader is not around.  The name of the …

Clear These Three Hurdles To Be A Great Leader

Napoleon Bonaparte believed that the leader’s role is “to define reality, then give hope.” Within this prescription lies a formidable challenge to leaders.  How can you focus on the challenges and opportunities of today and, at the same time, maintain the spirit and effectiveness to lead your team forward? In today’s business environment, there are …

Why Stars Don’t Always Make Good Leaders

Quick, name a Hall Of Fame player that was also a head coach.  It’s quite rare, actually. but if you take this test on a company’s sales or product group, the answer would be different.  We often graduate the rock stars of business to middle management and beyond.  That’s the bench strength program of the …

Do You Have the Courage To Mentor Up?

Mentorship is an opportunity to build relationships and give gifts. Mentoring up, to those above you in rank or stature, may be one of your best career boosters. Really. This post will show you how to do it without getting shot for the message. There’s a common misconception in our business culture that mentorship is …

Great Leaders Can Change the Subject

Your work culture is a conversation, led by leaders or troublemakers, about how things are done around here.  If the leader isn’t driving the conversation forward, troublemakers can move it sideways or backwards.  Troublemakers include the naysayers, doomsdayers and taker-types. Much of our work life is spent in conversations with others. When these conversations move forward, …

Why Today’s Leader Needs the Agility of a Downhill Skier

Read any recent white paper on leadership, and you’ll see numerous references to agility as a key area for development.  From learning agility to innovation agility, it’s clear that leaders need to focus on how to go fast but stay graceful. Prior to my recent talk on this subject at a leadership conference, I conducted …

The Changing Face Of Leadership

What it takes to succeed as a leader has been redefined by changes in the workforce and mega trends. Gen Y is more motivated by identity, mastery and purpose than they are by money, power and stability.  Tech-Globalism accelerates the rate of change, be it in consumer attitudes, retail habits and government regulatory actions.  As the …

The Three Flavors Of Mentorship

The concept of mentor first appeared in Homer’s Odyssey, and since then has grown into a widely talked about concept.  Many of us seek mentors, especially during the beginning of our career. Many of us act as mentors, helping others on their journey to greatness.  What I’ve learned through my mentorship practice is that not …

Leaders: It’s Time To Shift Out Of Neutral and Hit the Gas!

For many of you, the last recession put you into survival mode.  This is especially true if you are in banking, financial services, construction, retail or automotive.  Those industries were hit so hard, all growth plans had to take a back seat. Shrinking expenses was the order of the day.  As long as we continue …

Here’s What Business Strategy Is Really All About (review)

Recently, I was booked to give the closing keynote at an annual corporate meeting for an industry leader.  Their CEO had a vision for the meeting: Create A Mindset Where Winning Is the Only Acceptable Outcome.  She picked me because I’d worked at a company (Yahoo) that famously developed this outlook, then lost it over …