Do you remember your first road trip or even your first trip on a plane? Travel changes you and how you see the world. It helps you think BIG.As CEO of one of the biggest hotel companies in the world
Chris Chan's insight:
Travel makes you look at things from completely new perspectives which you have never considered. It also makes you not take things for granted because circumstances are usually very different in a foreign environment. Great article.
As a business leader, I found that one of the scariest things to do was to give your people the freedom to make mistakes. While mistakes allow individuals to learn and grow, they can also be very costly to any company.
Chris Chan's insight:
From the article: "The steps to correcting mistakes apply to any area of life. Whether it’s business life or home life or personal life, the principles of apologizing remain the same. Good employees make a lot of mistakes, and truly great employees are those have mastered the art of apologizing for those mistakes."
Maggie Doyne left on a post-high school trip to Nepal and never came back.
Chris Chan's insight:
What figures do you most admire, whose leadership do you follow and whom do you seek for advice?
I have a very close group of adults, advisors, friends all of whom I go to depending on what the issues is or what kind of advice I'm seeking. I've been blessed to have some really incredible teachers and mentors in my life. I also realized very early on that the people of Nepal had just as much to teach me as I had to teach them. I think that one of the reasons for this project's success is the fact that from the very beginning, our local community here in Nepal has been here backing me 100%. I made it a priority to set up a separate Nepali Board of Directors made up entirely of people from Surkhet. The women on the Nepali Board are mothers, shopkeepers, and community leaders, they cannot read, they cannot write, none of them have been afforded an even elementary school education, but they are among the wisest, brightest, most amazing women I have ever had the privilege of working beside. I learn from them every day.
Stuart Jeffries: One of the world's most popular writers, Coelho has survived being sent to an asylum by his parents and tortured by Brazil's ruling militia
Chris Chan's insight:
The author of 'Alchemist', with 9.8 million Facebook fans, 6.3 million Twitter followers, and a fanbase embracing readers in the Islamic republic of Iran and the socialist republic of Cuba. He can also confirm Jennifer Lawrence's archery technique is authentic in 'The Hunger Games'.
The instances of leadership done right are few and far between, but here are five that stood out in 2012.
Chris Chan's insight:
To come up with this year’s best leadership moments, I read back through all the leadership columns I’ve written over the past year. I tried to divide them between lists of the best and the worst moments, and sadly, this ’best’ list was far shorter.
It’s too bad—but at the same time, entirely expected—that role-model moments and instances of leadership done right are so few and far between. In a year that brought us the mud-slinging of a presidential election, a long list of corporate scandals and fallen leaders, and the leadership farce that the fiscal cliff negotiations have become, it’s no surprise that moments that made us proud were rarer than those that made us cringe.
Still, a few gave us faith in the ability of leaders to make the right call, to act in courage rather than fear, and to push us forward rather than pull us back. Here, my suggestions for the five best leadership moments of 2012:
You were born with seven brain attributes for effective management. How much you turn the volume up or down depends on you--and what you want to accomplish.
Research tells us that there are seven brain attributes—thinking and behavioral tendencies—every leader naturally takes advantage of to a greater or lesser extent, and finds they’re effective to a greater or lesser extent depending on the traits of the individuals they interact with. These neural pathways are etched in the brain over many years:
1. Analytical thinking happens in the left hemisphere of the brain and is essential to making more objective, less biased decisions. As a leader, this is the function that helps you look at existing research and data, examine options, and question what will or will not work.
2. Structural thinking also takes place in the left part of the brain and ensures that you come up with a plan that is doable. It is the methodical, sequential process that helps maximize results, and minimize pitfalls.
3. Social thinking is a right-brain tendency that allows a leader to listen, build successful teams, relate to people, and develop and inspire others.
4. Conceptual thinking is right-brain, visionary thinking that jumpstarts innovation. Ideas that connect the dots and come out of left field can invigorate your organization.
5. Expressiveness is a behavior style you use to communicate your ideas. It affects how you relate to people and sets the course for the way you speak with others.
6. Assertiveness is a behavior style you use to put your ideas to work. An effective leader is assertive enough to make things happen, but not so assertive that others are stymied.
7. Flexibility is a behavior style you bring to the way you get things done. It determines not only your openness to other points of view, but also your ability to thrive in undefined (or very defined) situations.
Tadashi Yanai, CEO of the parent company of Japanese clothing juggernaut Uniqlo and the wealthiest person in Japan, found himself in San Francisco recently, opening his company’s first West Coast store and explaining how Silicon Valley had influenced his fast-growing company.
After some discussion of flat management hierarchies, the power of failure, and the brilliance of Twitter, Yanai got down to brass tacks.
“You have to be a crazy guy and a little eccentric to be very successful,” Yanai says. “Whether it’s Steve Jobs or [longtime Intel CEO] Andy Grove, they’re crazy.”
Yanai knows from unconventional ambition. He’s leading Uniqlo’s parent company Fast Retailing toward a goal of $50 billion in 2020 sales, quadrupling current revenue. Having saturated Japan with its signature mix of fleece, synthetic thermal underwear, slender down jackets, low-cost Japanese-engineered jeans, and other basics, Uniqlo is on a global expansion tear. By the end of the decade, it would like to glean a fifth of its sales from North America alone.
But where other global fashion brands like Zara and H&M zig, Uniqlo zags. Where the other guys focus on winning at the old game of fashion, churning an array of styles through their stores ever more rapidly, Yanai is acting more like a tech executive, nurturing long development cycles in which clothes and advanced materials are carefully iterated. Uniqlo partners with high-tech suppliers like carbon-fiber-maker Toray and cuts 10-year deals with Chinese manufacturers. The model draws as much on Intel and Toyota as Gap.
A great article for leaders who wish to learn a thing or two from how Sherlock Holmes think when he approaches his cases. We can all learn from one of the greatest detectives of all time when we deal with our work and when we work alongside with people around us.
If you haven't read Anne-Marie Slaughter's cover story in the July/August issue of The Atlantic, titled "Why Women Still Can't Have It All," you've probably seen part of the discussion it sparked. With her argument that "among those who have made it to the top, a balanced life still is more elusive for women than it is for men,"
Anne-Marie -- a Princeton professor who was formerly the first woman to serve as the State Department's director of policy planning -- has renewed the debate by "bringing fresh twists to bear on longstanding concerns about status, opportunity and family," as the New York Times put it.
Of the points she makes, the one with which I most wholeheartedly agree is that we desperately need to purge our lives of one particular poison:
"The culture of "time macho" -- a relentless competition to work harder, stay later, pull more all-nighters, travel around the world and bill the extra hours that the international date line affords you -- remains astonishingly prevalent among professionals today."
There are some points where Anne-Marie and I disagree -- and recently we had the opportunity to debate the issue in person -- but I was grateful that her article put the spotlight on an issue with deep implications not only for women, but for everyone: that by sacrificing our families -- and by extension, ourselves -- on the altar of our careers, we are in danger of cutting ourselves off from our own wisdom and perspective -- the very qualities that are so lacking in our macho work culture. And that by doing so, we play into a self-perpetuating destructive system that will require the same of others down the line.
Though time away from our families comes at a real and obvious cost, what does it actually win us in the work place? Not much.
Anne-Marie cites studies finding that the number of men and women working 50-plus hour weeks is increasing and that our "always on" attitude toward work doesn't necessarily mean more productivity. Quite the opposite, in fact. As one study concludes: "When that time doesn't add a lot of value and comes at a high cost to talented employees, who will leave when the personal cost becomes unsustainable -- well, that is clearly a bad outcome for everyone."
How is that personal cost unsustainable? Let me count the ways:-
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