Posts Tagged ‘leadership’

Are you a natural leader?

13 Jan

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      In a recent survey, more than 800 international executives agreed that leaders navigating today’s complex business landscape can no longer rely on past experience to drive future success. An overwhelming majority (87%) also said that companies need to think outside the box and be more creative, daring and innovative in their approach to developing and retaining top executives. Read the rest of this entry »

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      chasing-tail200x233According to Robert E Quinn, “Leadership is not a position – it’s a state”.

      The professor of business and management at the Center of Positive Organizations at Ross Business School, University of Michigan, also advises that you ask yourself this:

      What results do you want to create?

      By doing so, he believes, you immediately put yourself in the future instead of solving problems from the past.

      When you are stressed or in a low mood, you automatically try to find the root of the problem and the reason why you feel the way you do. You might get stuck in your attempt to explain the problem and twist and turn different solutions to it.

      Sometimes the ‘problem-solving search’ leads to more problems and negative emotions, and you end up chasing your own tail. A classic example is when your thoughts begin to revolve around the ‘why’, which research suggests is part of the problem. Read the rest of this entry »

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      Leading in tough times

      28 Oct

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          LeadingToughTimes200x233When a team is up against it and defeat feels depressingly certain, it’s often the quality of leadership that dictates whether it sinks or swims.

          At some point, all leaders will be severely tested as they nurture a variety of personalities. To get the best out of your team when times are tough, it’s important to have strategies in place.

          I have these three suggestions to help you.

          1. Coach performance, not results

          When he managed Wigan Athletic, Roberto Martinez had a very limited budget at his disposal. Remarkably, they survived in the Premier League season after season and were finally relegated at the same time as being crowned FA Cup champions. Read the rest of this entry »

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          TapIntoTeamPotential200x233“What a wee little part of a person’s life are his acts and his words! His real life is led in his head, and is known to none but himself. ” - Mark Twain

          How relevant this quote is to business life. As a business leader you do all that you can to facilitate the best performance possible from your team. Clear goals, appropriate reward, comfortable environment, the right systems and processes. Yet you’re not seeing the optimum performance you seek. So why aren’t your people delivering peak performance?  Perhaps you haven’t thought about a key factor – the thoughts, feelings, perceptions and motivations that influence and inform their behaviour as they react to their experience.

          We’re all subject to the same processes and can certainly develop ourselves by becoming more self aware. In doing so, we create the possibility of consciously making choices about how to react. Perhaps you’ve already experienced that route to developing your leadership – but what of those around us? Read the rest of this entry »

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          Do you lead yourself?

          24 Apr

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              “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge.” -Martin Luther King, Jr.

              Knowing what  you stand for and what is important to you drives leadership choices. This is true in a business context where the need for effective leadership is as strong as ever. Every great accomplishment has, at its core, effective leadership.

              In a survey recently quoted in Forbes, HR professionals were asked to identify the challenges they expect to face over the next ten years. Developing leaders took the number 2 spot and was identified by 52% of respondents.  This represented a significant jump from only 29% of respondents naming leadership development as a pressing HR challenge two years earlier. Is this even more the case in the current climate of change and uncertainty, or was there turbulence like this before ours? Read the rest of this entry »

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              According to the Council for Excellence in management and leadership, only one in five managers is qualified in management. At a time when management tasks are increasingly performed by people who are not professional managers, there is a greater need than ever for good quality people management advice.

              Unfortunately, there is so much on offer (online, in books, courses, magazines, from gurus and advisors) it means that it is hard to identify the most relevant and select the best.

              Take books. How many times have you tried to buy a book on people management and found you couldn’t choose, or ended up disappointed? When I talk to managers and CMI members, the same story emerges: there is simply too much choice. So how can you identify the books that will actually add value?

              CMI’s book of the year

              This year, the Chartered Management Institute’s Management Book of the Year was awarded to Richard Newton for The Management Book. Focusing on the people side of management, The Management Book identifies that there are still many businesses where managers, even at a senior level, don’t know the best way to manage and get the most out of their staff. It offers advice on issues like how best to control and meet the evolving expectations of the team, which is a big issue for many managers. With nuggets of ‘management gold’ including: “uniform treatment is not effective or efficient”; “the cost of not making a decision is often higher than the cost of making the wrong decision”; and “your behaviour must be consistent with the vision”, it is an accessible and highly practical read. Read the rest of this entry »

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              There are many definitions of leadership, but the consistent theme through all of them is influence.

              Leadership is the process of social influence in which we enlist the support of others in the accomplishment of our vision. All successful people know that their success comes as a result of other people, so whether you’re an HR professional, a manager, a trainer, or a parent, your success is dependent on your ability to influence others.

              So, how do we influence others? The first thing is to accept is that leadership is not about skills, but behaviour. People aren’t influenced by what we can do, but by what we say and how we say it. Read the rest of this entry »

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              Great moments are, by definition, exciting. Like diamonds, they sparkle. If you think about it, each and every one of us have moments in everyday life – an important conversation held, a tough decision taken or perhaps a point of realisation. Such experiences are critically important because they trigger change, and shape the way we think, feel and act in the workplace.

              Add storytelling to your leadership toolkit

              When it comes to leadership communication, the spoken word is a fundamentally different medium from the written word. Simply banging up bullet points on a slide and reading through them is, as we know, rarely a compelling proposition for an audience.

              By contrast, stories are. Read the rest of this entry »

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              They’re over. Done! Kaput! Finito! The London 2012 Olympics are history, sadly. For they were: “happy and glorious games,” according to IOC President Jacques Rogge. And for generations to come, we will all remember where we were in the summer of ‘12. The summer our little island welcomed 200 countries, 14,700 athletes, 21,000 media and over 100 heads of government and heads of state from across the world.

              And we delivered.

              What will the Olympic legacy be?

              Now, our attention turns to the future, and legacy-making. Already there is one noticeable legacy. The number of organisations piggy backing on the Games: “Use us, and you too can enjoy that gold medal feeling,” is the message. Have you seen them too? Read the rest of this entry »

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              For too long, we have been mesmerised by the talent of the individual. This singular focus has perpetuated the myth of superstar leaders, heroic top performers and up-and-coming talent. Most organisations have the recruitment philosophy of seeking only the brightest and the best, but are these principles enough to deliver the long-term value needed for today’s organisations?

              Successful leaders = successful relationships

              How is it that a star performer in one organisation fails to deliver equal value in another? By focusing only on the talents of an individual, we underestimate the influence of personal/professional networks, and the alignment between the culture and purpose of the organisation and individual. In his article Being the change you want to see: developing the leadership culture at Ernst & Young, Peter Hawkins highlights that successful leadership resides in the relationships leaders create, not within the leaders themselves. Read the rest of this entry »

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