Tag Archive - Attitude

The Best Learning Tool Available To Us All

Man in mouse trap

There was an upperclassman at West Point who I was sure was the worst leader I had ever met. Then I met a commander in the Army that jumped to the top of the list.

But, it was not until I hit the corporate world that I met someone who, to this day, ranks at the top of this dubious list. They were all bad. But, I learned a lot from each of them.

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Ten Examples of Immature Leaders

Grumpy man

Who would you rather follow? A gray haired veteran who has two kids in college or a recently promoted 30 year old former cheerleader? To me, neither of these descriptions gives me enough information.

I have seen both types lead well and both types act like spoiled adolescents. The differentiator between leaders is often maturity. Maturity is not measured by age or experience. Maturity is measured by behaviors. Continue Reading…

Leaders: Control The Controllables

I'm In Control

We were in last place.  I was leading a team that began the year #71 of 72.  By February we were alone in last place.  In June, nothing had changed.

As a new manager, I was losing sleep, losing my temper and losing my team.  One night as I fretted over my team’s results with a veteran manager he asked me a simple yet profound question.  He asked, “Dave, are you leading people or are you managing a ranking report?”

The answer of course was the latter.  I was focused on my circumstances.  I was letting everything I couldn’t control have control over me.  As a result, I was managing not leading.

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Being Good Sometimes – Is Not Good Enough

Don't Be Surprised

Should someone continue to pay me for doing part of my job? I have encountered people who think that doing a good job in parts of their work is enough to expect continued employment and in some cases promotions.

Here are some examples:

  • A nurse who is strong clinically, but consistently fails to correctly document things in patient charts.
  • A salesperson who knows his products and competitor products inside and out, but creates very few strong client relationships.
  • A middle manager who always gets reports in on time, but does not coach or develop individuals on her team.

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Three Reasons Servants Are Happier People

Servants Are Happier

There is a woman I know who does nothing but serves others. Every time I see her, she is helping or offering to help others. I am amazed at her energy and her constant giving. She is always in a good mood!

Who are the biggest servants you know? I am talking about the people who never stop giving of themselves. They may be leaders with a title. They may be someone without a title. Picture them in your mind.

Now I ask you, how often have you seen that person have a bad attitude or even a bad day? Continue Reading…

Idea Men Versus Action Heroes

Initiative Is Rare

“There are plenty of good idea men.  A lot of them are collecting tolls on the thruway as we speak.”  It is a rare individual who can be counted on for ideas and for action.

Over time, as I hired and led teams, I realized that while I loved to have people who were both idea men and action heroes, if I had choose one, I would always choose the action hero.  Creativity is much more common than initiative. Continue Reading…

When High Performance Is Not Enough

Who cares if he's good!

“He’s doing the job. In fact, he is meeting every performance goal we have for him. But….” It’s what comes after the “But” that can drive leaders crazy and cause sleepless nights.

Unfortunately, many leaders will put up with what comes after the “But” because the performance metrics are being met. It is a tough call for a leader to fire a high performer. It takes conviction and courage to make this decision. But, it is necessary. Continue Reading…

Can Humility and Confidence Coexist?

Just Add Humility!

I spent a long time believing that if I was good at something, I needed to tell people about it. I thought it was a sign of confidence. Looking back, I realize I turned a lot of people off with that attitude.

Few people would argue that confidence is not an important trait for successful individuals and leaders to possess. But like many positive traits, confidence out of control can be a weakness. I had to learn that confidence and humility can coexist in the same person. Continue Reading…

I Am An Optimist Except About Pessimists

Half-Full or Half-Empty?

I am an optimist. If you have read my blogs in the past, you know this. Few people follow pessimists anywhere. Pessimists usually keep themselves and those around them from making any progress or experiencing growth.

I understand that past experiences may cause some people to be pessimists. But I do believe being an optimist or a pessimist is a choice. That choice will often determine the quality of a person’s life and their impact on the lives of others. Continue Reading…

Two Ways You Know You Are About to Fail

Should Have Seen It Coming?

Critiquing a basketball team or soccer team the day after a game is easy. ESPN has built a television empire by analyzing the mistakes made by coaches and players.

The scrutiny is often insightful with multiple lessons for other coaches and players to consider. It is much easier to diagnose why someone failed AFTER the failure.

But, what can we to do identify an impending failure? How can we see it before it happens and make changes? Continue Reading…

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