Decision Making

Every Name is Not the Same

    Names matter. You need look no further than the controversy raging around yesterday’s decision by President Obama to change the name of Mount McKinley, the tallest mountain in North America. Obama’s signed an order to rename it Denali, which the mountain has been called by the native peoples of Alaska who have lived in its shadow for … Read more

Communication that Kills – Literally

    In 2013, two infants died at my local hospital. The Commonwealth of Massachusetts did a thorough investigation into the causes of the deaths. They determined that communications within the hospital was a major factor. Specifically, the hospital’s culture had been hobbled with a “hint and hope” style of communication.You know hint and hope, … Read more

A Crucial Component In Communicating Change

People don’t naturally embrace change, and for good reason: Change = Uncertainty = Fear People are used to the familiar.  There’s a reason they call it “The Comfort Zone”. When you start forcing people away from the familiar, they can have a range of potential responses.   Their reactions are influenced by your skill in leading … Read more

FIFA: Four Illustrations of Flawed Action

    Money is not dangerous, unless you buy power.  Philosopher Karl Popper FIFA, the world governing body for International Football (Soccer), has had (to put it mildly) a bad week. Bribery Racketeering Graft Corruption Conspiracy Words more often associated with organized crime than with a major league sport. FIFA is embroiled in a massive … Read more

What Stops Leaders from Empowering Others?

    The research firm Universum recently queried over 2,000 business leaders and professionals, asking: What’s the most important quality that you expect future leaders to possess? The #1 response (41%): They empower their employees. Empowerment. It became a business buzzword twenty years ago, and has been in and out of vogue ever since.At it’s core, … Read more

How Do You Deal With Disagreement?

    Working with others means that you’ll eventually face conflict and disagreement. Conflict isn’t bad:  we need work cultures that support differing perspectives, multiple opinions, and divergent thinking.   However, how we communicate our disagreements can either help or hinder our workplace relationships and results.A new paper in the Academy of Management Review identifies four distinct categories of conflict … Read more

What’s Your Leadership Model: Elephant or Ostrich?

    If leadership was easy, more people would be great leaders.  Leading is smooth sailing when things are going smoothly.   The real question is: How do you fare under pressure? I was flying from Hartford to Charlotte last week, on the first leg of a multi-day business trip. The flight was proceeding smoothly. … Read more

The Three Pitfalls of Perfectionism

Has this happened to you? Growing up, you came home from school having received a 98 on a test. You tell your Mom or Dad. They reply, “What happened to the other 2 points?” You bring your report card home.  You’ve got all A’s except for one B+.  What does the conversation focus on? The … Read more

10 Things Leading An Auction Taught Me About Leading Meetings

You may never lead an auction in your life. But you probably do (or will) lead meetings. Last Friday night, I took my first turn as an auctioneer (and emcee) at the annual spring fundraiser for my kids’ elementary school. Now that I’ve run my first auction, it’s became obvious that there are massive parallels between auctions … Read more

The Confusion that Leads to Distraction and Overwhelm

Some months back, I shared a post about how we’re no longer in the information age–we now live in the interruption age. Do you feel more overwhelmed and distracted than you used to? If your experience is anything like many of the leaders I work with, you probably answered yes. Part of the reason we’re so … Read more

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