Tag Archive - Leadership

Three Distractions That Defeat A Good Plan

Most Plans Work.  It's The Execution

The Zone, Body For Life, Atkins, South Beach, and Vegan are all different eating plans I have employed to lose weight. They all worked too. That is, they worked as long as I executed the plan!

I’ve spent many hours in conference rooms developing business plans. Some companies will take three months out of 2014 to plan for 2015. Very few businesses or business people ignore planning.

But, some businesses thrive and some just survive. Was it truly a better strategy that made the difference or just better execution? Continue Reading…

New Hires- 5 Keys To A Good Start

Put The Odds In Your Favor

Now what?  After reviewing a stack of resumes, phone screenings, multiple interviews and reference checks, I have hired the best person out there for the job.   What’s next?

I could do nothing, roll the dice and hope my new hire reaches the potential I see in them.  Or I could eliminate chance and put the odds in my favor.

Continue Reading…

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.

Continue Reading…

New Leaders On New Teams: 5 Key Steps

New Leader, New Team

I started my first team from scratch and it took us over two years to hit our stride.  My second team had a mix of experienced and novice members on it.  We took about a year to begin to fire on all cylindars.  The next team was pieced together from other teams.  The individuals were all tenured and successful but most had not worked together before. We hit our stride quickly.

The way a leader launches into leadership with a new team can often determine that team’s trajectory for years to come. Continue Reading…

Leaders: Make A Decision!

Pull The Dang Trigger!

Ready – Shoot – Aim! Unfortunately that can be my decision-making process. On the other end of the spectrum are leaders who tend to be Ready – Aim – Aim – Aim….

Both styles can be problematic. One causes a lot of starting and a lot of stopping to happen. The other causes nothing to happen.

I may be tipping my hand and giving everyone an insight into my personality, but I also know I speak for a lot of people who are waiting on their leaders, when I say, “Pull the dang trigger!”  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…

My Un-Resume: I Failed My Team

My Un-Resume

My un-resume is my list of screw-ups.  They are things I am not proud of.

Periodically I share my un-resume with the world.  Most people who speak and consult on leadership are sure to present their successes to their clients.  I’m doing something different.

Yes, I’ve had success through the years and received awards and recognition as a result.  But rarely did my successes teach me as much as my failures.  Rest assured, I’ve had plenty of opportunity to learn!

Continue Reading…

The Self-Serving Leader- Another Oxymoronic Leadership Yarn

The Self-Centered Leader is an OxyMORON

Sam spoke to both the VP’s he had targeted during the three day planning meeting in Orlando. He was able to tell them exactly what was happening in his department.  There was no doubt he had impressed them with his knowledge of the company, and how he handled his troops.

When Sam got to the airport, he called his wife, Joanne. She asked him about his trip.  Sam smiled,  “I nailed it.”  Joanne smiled and asked for the details.

Meanwhile, the two VP’s were sitting on a plane together comparing notes.  Continue Reading…

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