Character Based Leadership Development, Consulting, and Training.

I'm Dave Anderson, President of Anderson Leadership Solutions based in Tyler, TX.  I am not an academic spouting leadership theories.  I learned my lessons in the trenches at West Point, in the Army and during 20 years at a Fortune 50 company.  The solutions I provide are practical and applicable.  Why Leadership Development? Because developing leaders transcends business.  If I help someone become a better leader at work, they become better husbands/fathers, wives/mothers and better in their ministries, volunteer work and communities.  No other business focused training impacts our society like leadership development.   This site includes blogs, videos, MP3 audio files and many other resources for those of you who want to grow as leaders.   I will also have online training options coming in the near future.

What Is A Low Maintenance Team?

Tools

There are High Maintenance People and there are Low Maintenance People.  The High Maintenance People wear me out.  I like Low Maintenance People!

I believe you can have teams that are High Maintenance and teams that are Low Maintenance.  I have led both types of teams.  Again, I like Low Maintenance Teams!  

What does a Low Maintenance Team look like?  Why is a Low Maintenance Team the best team to lead? Continue Reading…

Leaders: Get Out Of The Way

Get Out Of The Way

Lead, Follow AND Get Out of The Way!  The famous bumper sticker actually reads Lead, Follow OR Get Out of The Way.  But, for leaders the proper statement needs the AND instead of the OR.

For most people placed into leadership the call to lead is obvious.  This is a no-brainer.  A teacher’s job is to teach.  A saleperson’s job is to sell.  Also no-brainers.

But, what about following or even more confusing…getting out of the way?  Continue Reading…

Four Keys To Overcoming Failure

What now?

What if I fail?  There are no “If’s”!  You will fail.  We all fail.  We all fall flat on our faces at some point.  Some of us have more scars from those falls than others.

I am convinced that whatever success I have achieved in this life can be traced back to the failures that preceded the successes.  Thomas Watson once said, “If you want to increase your success rate, double your failure rate.”

If leaders, employees, spouses and children changed their attitude from fearing failure to embracing it, they would all increase their success rate. Continue Reading…

Staying Strong In A Crisis

Stroms are coming!

Business crisis, family crisis, personal crisis – no matter who I am or how blessed a life I’ve led to this point, I will face a crisis sooner or later.   How I respond in a crisis says a lot about who I am as a person and a leader.

Do I run from a challenge or towards one?  Do I act selfishly or selflessly?  Do I disappoint others or do I lead them?

In other words, do I come through the crisis weaker or stronger? Continue Reading…

Teamwork: Rookies Versus Veterans

Rookies Vs. Veterans

“That’s not going to work.”  Every time my most experienced people said this, I cringed.  I had a team with eight veterans and four rookies.  I soon realized that our team’s experience was killing innovation.

Each time a veteran spoke, it hurt us or helped us.  Experience kept us from moving forward into new territory.   At times, experience helped us make wise decisions and other times it kept us from growing. Continue Reading…

Leadership Depends On Character

Leadership Philosophy

I believe leadership is inherently a positive term.  Some well known experts whom I respect define leadership as influence, or influence towards a common objective.  However, I believe these definitions do not go far enough.

In my mind, being a leader is a positive statement.  There is a moral component to leadership.  Leadership is not simply about influence.  If I convince someone to perform immoral acts, I am influencing them, but I am not a leader. Therefore. I do not use the word leadership when discussing historical figures like Adolf Hitler or Joseph Stalin.   Continue Reading…

3 Words That Prove I Own My Actions

Who Owns It!

Ownership or excuses.  One is the mark of a leader.  The other is a sign that I am bound for mediocrity and failure.  In the long run, people who make excuses stall out.

Making excuses is a habit.  I wrote about how West Point deals with this habit in West Point:  How Leaders Seize Accountability.  But what are the results for me if I habitually make excuses?

Continue Reading…

Contracts Versus Covenants – In Business, In Life

Covenants Depend On Me Alone

“If you do this, then I will do that.”  This is the basic language in most contracts. The problem with contracts is that if one party does not comply, then the other party is not obligated to comply either.

I call this a problem because a lot of people consider all their relationships contractual ones.  “If you do this, then I will do that.”  This type of arrangement rarely makes for strong or lasting business or personal relationships.

A covenant on the other hand states, “I will do this.”  Period.  End of story.  Regardless of what you do.   What if we treated our business relationships and our personal relationships as covenants instead of contracts?  Continue Reading…

Hire – Work Ethic, Humility, Integrity, Maturity

Hiring Character

Skilled workers are available.  In this economy, there is always someone available who can do the job.  Skill and competencies are not hard to find or to hire.

Character is a different story.  As I have worked with oil and gas companies, large integrated medical systems, large regional banks and Fortune 50 companies, I see the same pattern repeated over and over again.  We hire skilled people that we end up firing for character issues.  Continue Reading…

When Is It Right To Quit The Fight

Why am I still fighting?

It was a good old knock down, drag out fight.  We had chosen our sides and were all vehemently sure of our positions.

In Patrick Lencioni’s The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, he expends 20% of his thesis on the need for healthy conflict on a team.  He says, and I believe, that without conflict it is highly unlikely a team is making the best decisions for an organization.

If this is true then by Lencioni’s scorecard, this was going to be a FANTASTIC decision!  But, in the midst of it all, I quietly raised my hand and gave in.  It was right to give up this fight. Continue Reading…

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