In late February, Groupon announced that it was replacing Andrew Mason, the company’s founder and chief executive officer. I’m familiar with Groupon, and admit that I have purchased a few, but I don’t track Groupon’s stock or stay abreast of the company’s moves. What caught my attention was Mason’s farewell letter to employees, publically posted. It was downright refreshing. Continue reading “What Can We Learn From a Fired Leader?” »
Dialogue. A word from the middle ages.
According to the dusty dictionary on my bookshelf, a dialogue is a conversation between two or more people. The practice of dialogue is powerful. It focuses on communication between people. It’s about sharing multiple perspectives, which often leads to problem-solving or exchanging opinions.
Blog. A word from 1999.
And it’s not in my bookshelf dictionary. (Which I just realized was published in 1981…Probably time for a new dictionary!) So I turned to Google, and found that “blog” is defined as “a web site on which an individual or group of users record opinions, information, etc. on a regular basis.”
So where’s the dialogue on the Everything DiSC blog? Continue reading “We invite you to dialogue…” »
This time of year, many organizations are turning their attention to talent management and training. But don’t wait for an invitation to begin your professional development. Here are five things you can do to take charge of your professional learning path.
1. Map it. To chart any course, you have to know where you are and where you want to go. While it sounds cliché, think about where you want to be in 2-5 years. What skills will you require? What knowledge will you need? Do you have the experience that will support your career objective? You might need to update your technology capabilities, add to your credentials, or take on more of a leadership role. Create a list of the things you’ll need when you get there, and start packing.
2. Get going. Don’t wait for your company to offer a class or to register you for training. There are a lot of available opportunities through free Continue reading “5 Steps to Creating Your Professional Learning Path” »
• “She’s a D, so you just have to deal with her bluntness.”
• “He’s an i. There’s no way he can work independently to get this done.”
• “He’s an S, so he won’t ever deal with conflict head-on.”
• “She’s a C. If we give her this task, she’ll over-analyze it and it will never get done.”
I was recently speaking about our book, The 8 Dimensions of Leadership, to a group of Human Resource Professionals in California. My talk, “Becoming a Multidimensional Leader,” focused on three major themes:
2) Good leaders understand that being an effective leader requires integrating knowledge with a real understanding of emotional, psychological, and interpersonal “default settings” and “blind spots.”
3) Leaders who are rated highly-effective by their subordinates are “multidimensional.” They have learned to be highly flexible in responding to the wide array of demands required by their organization. They can move outside their comfort zone and overcome the psychological barriers that keep some leaders from acting.
In essence, effective leaders are people who have attained a certain level of self-awareness and put that understanding to work as they contribute to helping an organization respond to challenges. Continue reading “Leadership for All?” »
Like many people, I spend several hours each month volunteering. My volunteer experience includes roles in our church, our children’s schools, the United Way, a neighborhood association, and various youth organization committees. All of these positions have contributed to developing my leadership skills, which is an added benefit to giving to my community.
Non-profit organizations often fill leadership roles with volunteers, so it’s an ideal way to practice your leadership skills, and there are many organizations that need your help.
How do you find a volunteer leadership role in an organization?
First, join an organization with a mission that excites you. Then, contribute as a committee member—you’ll get to know the organization, and you’ll become more credible by doing some of the work. When the opportunity arises, volunteer for a small leadership role, like Continue reading “Building Leadership Skills through Volunteering” »
I frequently get asked, “What’s the relationship between DiSC® and emotional intelligence?” I typically respond that DiSC is about helping to develop emotional intelligence, not measuring it. Even then, however, it’s usually a little unclear exactly what emotional intelligence means. Most of us have a vague notion of what EQ is, but it truly does encompass a huge diversity of skills. It can mean anything from self-awareness to general social skills. Of course, there are formal definitions of the trait, but the popular understanding of the concept appears to be largely murky.
photo credit: laszlo-photo
To me, one of the most intriguing things about successful leaders throughout history is the relationship between leadership and calculated risk: Wisely investing in an idea that has potential for great reward that, at the same time, is also associated with risk. Leaders take calculated risks all the time.
Calculated risk is central to many military operations, and we can learn a lot about leadership by thinking about it in the context of the military. We all know that life-and-death situations are extremely different from our seemingly routine daily office work, but looking at the leadership exhibited throughout history, there are many events that we can draw parallel to and motivation from. Continue reading “What is your relationship with leadership?” »
As our economy begins to recover, it seems that leadership skills are finally becoming one of the most critical success factors for organizations. Last Sunday, two articles on the front page of the New York Times Business section focused on leadership lessons at powerhouse companies Google and Starbucks.
Business reporter Adam Bryant wrote about Google’s Project Oxygen where technical experts are taught to be “better bosses.” It seems that Google has learned a good lesson. After analyzing a mountain of data and conducting hundreds of interviews with employees, Google came up with eight qualities that successful managers share. Continue reading “The Importance of a Diversified Leadership Approach” »
I’m a Pioneering Leader. When I say that, I sit up tall, like I’m in a covered wagon on Little House on the Prairie, leading the way to some new, undiscovered place. Except for the bonnet, the image pleases me.
But it’s 2011, and I’m not in a covered wagon; I’m a Vice President who leads a team of people whose jobs include planning events for our customers, and promoting those events.
So when we recently sat down to brainstorm ideas for promoting an upcoming event, I had several ideas, and was excited to rally the gang and drive towards my goal. The Pioneering voice in my head was enthusiastically telling me, “Let’s do something different and get this job done!”
But as I looked around the table, I knew that if I shared my ideas first, no one else would speak up. And I’ve been working with these people for several years, and I know they have great ideas—I just have to be quiet so they can have the time and space to share them.
And brainstorm, they did. They had some pretty creative ideas! This is what we landed on… Continue reading “Confessions of a Pioneering Leader” »