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5 Big Discoveries About Leadership in 2012

5 Big Discoveries About Leadership in 2012 | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

2012 has revealed interesting research in the leadership field. Here's five exciting findings presented by David Rock from the Neuro Leadership Institute. 


1. Why incompetent leaders keep getting hired


2. Why more women increase a team’s smarts


3. To increase engagement, share more information


4. Turns out leadership really is personal


5. Being the boss isn’t so stressful after all

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

(From the article): We’ve learned a lot about leadership this year – with many findings being surprisingly counter-intuitive. Let’s stop hiring the most confident, start to share more information, increase the percentage of woman at the top, and remember that leadership really is personal. Perhaps none of this is ‘new news’, but it is exciting to see the research catch up to our hunches.

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donhornsby's curator insight, December 29, 2012 4:35 PM

(From the article): 1. Why incompetent leaders keep getting hired

 

2. More women increase a team’s smarts

 

3. To increase engagement, share more information

 

4. Turns out leadership really is personal

 

5. Being the boss isn’t so stressful after all

Vilma Bonilla's curator insight, September 15, 2013 8:37 AM

Here are the five "bigger" research findings. My fave is numero cuatro: Leadership is personal. That connection is key if not paramount.

 

1. Why incompetent leaders keep getting hired

 

2. More women increase a team’s smarts

 

3. To increase engagement, share more information

 

4. Turns out leadership really is personal

 

5. Being the boss isn’t so stressful after all

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If You Want to Change, Don’t Read This

If You Want to Change, Don’t Read This | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

In theory everyone can change, but in practice most people don’t… except for some well-documented changes that affect most of us.


We need an enormous amount of effort and dedication in order to both attain and maintain any desired changes — or we will quickly revert to our old habits. In short, change requires self-critical insight, humble goals, and indefatigable persistence. It means going against our nature and demands extraordinary levels of willpower.

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Ian Berry's curator insight, August 4, 6:59 PM
I agree we don't change our character I do believe we change how our character influences and impacts others like the great example given "The late Nelson Mandela, perhaps the least disputed moral figure of our times, had an arrogant, aggressive, and antisocial youth before inspiring everyone with his path of nonviolent resistance."
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Tracking the Enemies of Agility

Tracking the Enemies of Agility | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

The failure of big companies to adapt to their changing circumstances is one of the fundamental puzzles in the world of business. Occasionally, a genuinely “disruptive” technology, such as digital imaging, comes along and wipes out an entire industry. But usually the sources of failure are more prosaic and more avoidable.

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Ron McIntyre's curator insight, August 10, 11:39 AM

Totally agree!

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Culture Eats Strategy – Innovation Psychology Explored

Culture Eats Strategy – Innovation Psychology Explored | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

The late, great Peter Drucker said “Culture Eats Strategy for Breakfast”.  Of his many insights, this might be the most important for Innovation.  However, just as a fish doesn’t see the water, culture is often invisible to those that operate inside of it, and can therefore be difficult to influence or even evaluate. Unlike strategy, which can be mapped out in a memo, or innovation processes, which can be taught at an offsite, culture needs to be grown and nurtured over time. When it is, it can be both powerful and resilient, even if it isn’t always obvious. 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Excerpt from the article: 

 

So what is a great Innovation culture, and where can I buy one?  There is no one size fits all, but there are some components that are almost universally important for Innovation.

 

1.  Autonomy and Purpose: There is a significant body of evidence that suggests for creative tasks, as long as people receive enough compensation to be comfortable, it is intrinsic, rather than extrinsic motivation that drives performance.   That is, autonomy, alignment with purpose, and respect are all more likely than money to have a team ordering pizza at 9pm because they cannot put a problem down.  If you want to dig deeper into this, Dan Ariely has done a lot of work in this area, and Dan Pink has an excellent video/TED talk where he discusses the power of  Autonomy, Mastery and Purpose in driving intrinsic motivation.

 

2.  Mastery and T-Shaped Innovators: Mastery is critical.  We need to be very lucky to create something innovative without knowing what’s gone before.  The more established the field, the more mastery is typically needed, and acquiring it should be a life long process that evolves with the field, something that a learning culture should encourage.  A culture that values mastery can also value a fresh perspective, but without mastery, nine times out of ten, this will simply reinvent the wheel.  Interestingly, mastery comes in at least two flavors.  Deep knowledge of a subject is of course crucial, but emergent innovation usually comes from the integration of ideas from different areas.  This is where T-shaped innovators, or expert generalists become crucial to the process.  A culture therefore needs to reward both experts in a single field, and these more diversified experts who know a lot about a lot of different stuff, and who can bridge between experts.

 

3.  Failure as learning and Respect.  It’s now quite fashionable to embrace fast failure, but in many cases there remains a knowing-doing gap.  It’s easy to thoughtfully build it into a strategy, but still freak out when bad data comes in just ahead of an important stage gate in the process!  Also related to this is the productive pause, and taking time out to define a problem.  It is easy for a culture to become action orientated, and reward energetic ‘doers’.  However, taking time out to really define a problem, and think before acting can be at least as important. Respect lies at the heart of these cultural concepts, as few people will willfully fail, or sit around doing nothing.  A culture of respect assumes this.

 

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Eric Anderson's curator insight, August 24, 2014 11:49 PM

Worth the read!

 

Ian Berry's curator insight, August 4, 7:02 PM
Like this insight "Strategy is more about what we do when we think about a decision. Culture is more about what we do when we don’t."
Ron McIntyre's curator insight, August 10, 11:39 AM

What do you think?

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Does Power Lead to Corruption?

Does Power Lead to Corruption? | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Scientific research shows that, whatever an individual’s personality type, power leads to antisocial decisions – and testosterone plays an important part too.

 

 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

I also recommend reading this related article from The Atlantic: How Power Corrupts the Mind

 

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Ways to Become More Self-Aware

Ways to Become More Self-Aware | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

You can’t be a good leader without self-awareness. It lies at the root of strong character, giving us the ability to lead with a sense of purpose, authenticity, openness, and trust. It explains our successes and our failures. And by giving us a better understanding of who we are, self-awareness lets us better understand what we need most from other people, to complement our own deficiencies in leadership.

 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

The question is how can we cultivate and develop self-awareness further.

 

In this HBR blog post Anthony K. Tjan suggests five ways to go about it: 

 

  • Meditate
  • Write down your key plans and priorities
  • Take psychometric tests
  • Ask trusted friends
  • Get regular feedback at work

 

I find the advices here rather simplistic. There are tons of other ways to go about this.

 

Go for walk, draw your lifeline, work on constructing your narrative, take up regular therapy or supervision, read books, write, join a knowledge salon, get a mentor.

 

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Are Most CEOs Too Old to Innovate?

Are Most CEOs Too Old to Innovate? | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Researchers have identified this type of curve in a wide range of creative professions, though the peak age varies by activity. On its face, this data suggests that by the time most CEOs make it to the corner office, their most creative, innovative years are behind them.


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Corporate Mindfulness is Bullsh*t

Corporate Mindfulness is Bullsh*t | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Mindfulness matters, but make no mistake: Corporations are co-opting the idea to disguise the ways they kill us.

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Is the mindfulness boom really a revolution? If it is, what exactly has been overturned or radically transformed to garner such grand status?

 

Wall Street and corporations are still conducting business as usual, special interests and political corruption goes unchallenged.

 

As Nicole Ashoff points out in “The New Prophets of Capital,” “people must willingly participate in and reproduce its structures and norms,” and in times of crisis, “capitalism must draw upon cultural ideas that exist outside of the circuits of profit-making.”  Mindfulness is one such new cultural idea serving this purpose.

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Ivon Prefontaine, PhD's curator insight, August 3, 2:33 PM
Any time we co-opt a word and process, we excise them of their deepest meanings. Being mindful is a way of living and being. It is not to enhance one's financial bottom line.
Ron McIntyre's curator insight, August 3, 5:06 PM

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Ian Berry's curator insight, August 4, 7:07 PM
Like this contrarian view. This doesn't mean that we as individuals don't notice (mindfulness) and take action to rid the world of arguably our greatest problem - inequality
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The New Class of Digital Leaders

The New Class of Digital Leaders | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Faced with organizational challenges, more and more companies are hiring an executive to manage their digital transformation.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

When hiring a digital leader, companies must consider not just the individual’s background and expertise, but also his or her position within the organization and the governance mechanisms from which he or she will derive the responsibility and authority needed to carry out the mission.

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Ron McIntyre's curator insight, June 26, 2:00 AM

What do you think?

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Leadership Development’s Epic Fail

Leadership Development’s Epic Fail | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Most leadership development programs focus on competencies but fail to view leaders as individuals.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Leadership capacity - Two percent come by it naturally. Two percent will never get it. The other 96% lie in between. The job is to move people forward in a productive direction — to help them “be wiser, younger.”

 

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Begoña Pabón's curator insight, May 29, 2:46 PM
Una cultura de liderazgo no solo debe contemplar las competencias... debe ser capaz de contemplar al individuo
Ron McIntyre's curator insight, May 30, 2:39 AM

Your thoughts?

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Finally, Proof That Managing for the Long Term Pays Off

Finally, Proof That Managing for the Long Term Pays Off | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Companies deliver superior results when executives manage for long-term value creation and resist pressure from analysts and investors to focus excessively on meeting Wall Street’s quarterly earnings expectations.

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

McKinsey's new Corporate Horizon Index provides systematic evidence that a long-term approach can lead to superior performance for revenue and earnings, investment, market capitalization, and job creation.

 

Download the full report here

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Jerry Busone's curator insight, February 14, 7:47 AM

Interesting read about laying for the long game vs. reacting to the the short play

Ron McIntyre's curator insight, February 15, 6:31 PM

It's about time we bring long term sustainable growth back into the picture of businesses today.

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2017 Edelman Trust Barometer

The 2017 Edelman TRUST BAROMETER reveals that trust is in crisis around the world. The general population’s trust in the institutions of business, government, NGOs, and media declined broadly, a phenomenon not recorded since Edelman began tracking trust in 2001. 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

The implications of the global trust crisis are deep and wide-ranging. It began with the Great Recession of 2008, but like the second and third waves of a tsunami, globalization and technological change have further weakened people’s trust in global institutions. The consequence is virulent populism and nationalism as the mass population has taken control away from the elites.

 

Key findings from the 2017 Trust Barometer include:

 

  • Trust in business (52 percent) dropped in 18 countries, while NGOs (53 percent) saw drop-offs as high as 10 points across 21 countries.

 

  • Employees, on average, are trusted 16 points more than CEOs on messaging around employee/customer relations (53 percent), financial earnings (38 percent), crises (37 percent), innovation (33 percent), industry issues (32 percent) or programs addressing societal issues (30 percent).

 

  • Half of the countries surveyed have lost faith in the system, led by France (72 percent) and Italy (72 percent), Mexico (67 percent), South Africa (67 percent) and Spain (67 percent).

 

  • Trust in traditional media fell 5 points to 57 percent, the steepest decline among platforms since 2012, followed by social media (41 percent), which dropped three points. By contrast, online-only media (51 percent) received the biggest bump in trust at five points.
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Steve Bax's curator insight, January 19, 2:46 AM
Fascinating. 
Sergey Pavlov's curator insight, January 20, 8:10 AM
Interesting presentation
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PwC CEO Survey 2017: What's next?

PwC CEO Survey 2017: What's next? | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

PwC's CEO Survey for 2017 has just been released at the World Economic Forum's meeting in Davos.

 

The survey shares the view of nearly 1,400 CEOs on key events, trends and issues shaping business decision-making today.

 

 

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Katherine Prewitt's curator insight, May 30, 11:58 AM
Things are moving fast… Surveys like this one from PwC, that come back year-on-year with a consistent framework to sound CEO preoccupations, seem more valuable than ever. We see where ideas shift and evolve... 
After years of talk about opportunity, CEOs are feeling heat from interconnectivity.

PwC Chairman, Bob Moritz comments on the results:

 “In a time of heightened anxieties juxtaposed with the highest levels of transparency we have experienced, how leaders engage with employees and stakeholders (both public and private) has never been more important. Strategy can no longer be an approach of simply numbers and bottom lines; strategy must be built upon a long-term vision of growth, access, equality, innovation, and the human endeavour. The last of these is arguably the most important because linked to it is the critical concept of trust”
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Silicon Valley Has an Empathy Vacuum

Silicon Valley Has an Empathy Vacuum | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Silicon Valley’s biggest failing is the distinct lack of empathy for those whose lives are disturbed by its technological wizardry. 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Excellent piece by Om Malik in the New Yorker. 

 

Whether self-driving cars and trucks, drones, privatization of civic services like transportation, or dynamic pricing, all these developments embrace automation and efficiency, and abhor friction and waste.

 

People are falling behind because technology is advancing so fast and our skills and organizations aren’t keeping up. 

 

 

 

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Digital Leadership Is Not an Optional Part of Being a CEO

Digital Leadership Is Not an Optional Part of Being a CEO | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

What does digital leadership look like?

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Study shows that 90% of executives believe their businesses are being disrupted or reinvented by digital business models, and 70% believe they do not have the right skills, leader, or operating structure to adapt. It’s not a good position to be in.

 

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Mark Edwards's curator insight, December 4, 2016 3:38 PM

Study shows that 90% of executives believe their businesses are being disrupted or reinvented by digital business models, and 70% believe they do not have the right skills, leader, or operating structure to adapt. It’s not a good position to be in.

 

Steve Bax's curator insight, December 5, 2016 3:27 AM
Very good article by Josh Bersin in HBR here. In addition to the comment from Kenneth Mikkelsen, I find the comment on the importance of culture very interesting. 
Bersin says "As we’ve studied digital leadership over the last few years, we find something else important: Culture is key. Success is largely dependent on people sharing information with each other, partnering, and continuously educating themselves. This is able to happen when you build a collective, transparent, and deeply shared culture. CEOs who are digital leaders are continuously reinforcing the culture, communicating values, and aligning people around the culture whenever something goes wrong." The shift to more use and sharing of metrics is revealing too.
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Theranos and the Dark Side of Storytelling

Theranos and the Dark Side of Storytelling | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Successful stories generate powerful feelings, and strong feelings act as a solvent on our logic and our skepticism. To put it positively, good stories—fictional or not—make us more open minded. To put it negatively, they make us a lot more gullible.

 

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

I am a big fan of Jonathan Gottschall's book The Storytelling Animal. In this blog post, Jonathan explains how powerful, emotion-drenched stories is at the heart of every con job and how important it is to build a storytelling culture on an ethical foundation. 

 

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Leaders Need to Slow Down to Speed Up

Leaders Need to Slow Down to Speed Up | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Discovering how to learn fast, including taking time out for creative thinking and implementation, is necessary for effective self-disruption.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

How can leaders learn to adapt quickly to new knowledge and trends — to disrupt themselves before others do? Speed and agility in learning are critical.

 

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The Key to Adaptable Companies Is Relentlessly Developing People

The Key to Adaptable Companies Is Relentlessly Developing People | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

There are organizations that are great at what they do, that are relentless at it. But it turns out there are very few that are great and relentless at people development.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

A relentless focus on people, on developing everyone in the organization, leads to an organizational culture designed for adaptive change. In this sense, culture is strategy.

 

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Successful Leaders Know What Made Them Who They Are

Successful Leaders Know What Made Them Who They Are | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

As chairman of the Washington Speakers Bureau, Bernie Swain posed one simple question to 100 of the eminent people that his company represents. People like Madeleine Albright, Tom Brokaw, Colin Powell, Terry Bradshaw and Condoleezza Rice were asked to identify the one person, event, or influence that made them who they are as a leader and a person.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

The overriding lessons from Bernie Swain's questioning is that successful leaders are self-aware. They have an inner voice and pay attention to it. They understand the defining moments of their lives and thereby better understand their own strengths, biases, and weaknesses as leaders.

 

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The Dark Side of High Employee Engagement

The Dark Side of High Employee Engagement | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

We need to take a more balanced view of employee engagement. Managers need to think about how to create just enough tension in their workforce in order to trigger healthy competition and intrinsic motivation. A “one size fits all” approach to employee engagement is unrealistic, and the common understanding of engagement as “happiness” is too simplistic.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

While engagement is an important determinant of performance, performance is also affected by other factors – and sometimes those factors matter more than engagement. For example, a recent study by Google found that the critical drivers of effective team performance were an open and safe team culture, clear goals, and a strong sense of purpose. Likewise, scientific studies show that leaders’ judgment and decision making ability can affect team and organizational performance beyond engagement. This explains why certain leaders – think Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos – can be so effective despite not displaying great people-skills or emotional intelligence: you can get away with it if you also have great judgment and vision.

 

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Kenny Kerswell's curator insight, August 31, 2016 5:59 AM

While engagement is an important determinant of performance, performance is also affected by other factors – and sometimes those factors matter more than engagement. For example, a recent study by Google found that the critical drivers of effective team performance were an open and safe team culture, clear goals, and a strong sense of purpose. Likewise, scientific studies show that leaders’ judgment and decision making ability can affect team and organizational performance beyond engagement. This explains why certain leaders – think Steve Jobs or Jeff Bezos – can be so effective despite not displaying great people-skills or emotional intelligence: you can get away with it if you also have great judgment and vision.

 

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The Lost Art of Thinking in Large Organizations

The Lost Art of Thinking in Large Organizations | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Many executives in big companies attained their positions by excelling at getting things done. Unfortunately, a bias for doing rather than thinking can leave these executives ill-equipped for their new roles.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

A company becomes big by finding a successful business model — and then scaling it massively. This necessitates building a finely tuned system with highly standardized processes. To get promoted in such an environment requires an almost singular focus on execution. In other words, it requires action more than thinking. However, once executives are promoted to a senior level, these new business leaders must be able to think strategically. Ironically, the very skills in execution that led to their promotions often make these executives ill-equipped for their new roles, since their strategy thinking muscles have withered from disuse.

 

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The Management Thinker We Should Never Have Forgotten

The Management Thinker We Should Never Have Forgotten | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

W. Edwards Deming believed that we can improve worker performance only when we improve the entire system they work within. And he believed that managers wrongly apply incentive pay plans, forced rankings, and all sorts of carrots and sticks to create the illusionof control without solving root performance problems.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Revisiting W. Edwards Deming helps in an era of short-termism and mistrust.

 

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jean charles crouin's curator insight, August 15, 2016 5:14 AM
Much more to @demming thank his wheel...
Au delà de la roue...#leadership
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Reawakening Idealism

Reawakening Idealism | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

In current times we need idealists to steward the conversation about the society we want to live in rather than leaving it up to greedy lobbyists, opportunistic politicians and reductionistic fortune tellers to set the direction.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

The argument against idealism is an argument against democracy, an argument against love, an argument against justice and equity, and all the things that our culture has abandoned in the name of privatisation and economic profit maximization.

 

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prepareexcitable's comment, August 19, 2016 1:14 AM
Thats stunning...
Katherine Prewitt's curator insight, January 3, 11:31 AM
"When we defend idealism, we defend imagination. We defend possibility. We defend the world of ideas." Peter Block
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Edgar Schein: Humble Leadership

Author and organizational culture expert Ed Schein in a conversation with Google VP of People Development Karen May.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Edgar Schein investigates organizational culture, process consultation, research process, career dynamics, and organization learning and change. He analyzes how consultants work on problems in human systems and the dynamics of the helping process, and defines Humble Inquiry as “the fine art of drawing someone out, of asking questions to which you do not know the answer, of building a relationship based on curiosity and interest in the other person.”

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Gijs Spoor's curator insight, June 12, 2016 9:17 AM
In times of Great Churning asking humble questions allows collective intelligence to be activated. 
prepareexcitable's comment, August 19, 2016 1:14 AM
Its splendid :)
Barbara Kerr's curator insight, August 8, 11:25 AM
For the leader who seems to have everything . . .
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Evolving Leadership in the Digital Age

Evolving Leadership in the Digital Age | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

Today leaders face added complications of rapidly changing technology, virtual working teams separated by cultural and geographical boundaries, and the difficulties of making decisions when faced with an overload of information.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

We have moved from the “Command, Control, Compartmentalisation” way of leading organisations to a more interactive, informative, and Innovation-oriented model. To be truly effective, today’s organisations need to have leaders who have the emotional intelligence to create meaning, and have the capability to inspire and empower their people to get things done.

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Tanyam's curator insight, May 15, 2016 10:23 PM
Share your insight
People Power's curator insight, May 19, 2016 11:32 AM
It's not just leaders .. all of us - wake up - and don’t wait for the 'leaders' - they will follow
Dawn Hoenie's curator insight, May 12, 3:44 AM
Today leaders face added complications of rapidly changing technology, virtual working teams separated by cultural and geographical boundaries, and the difficulties of making decisions when faced with an overload of information.
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The Communication Guide For Leaders Who Aren't Sure What's Coming Next

The Communication Guide For Leaders Who Aren't Sure What's Coming Next | LeadershipABC | Scoop.it

When we don't have enough information, our brains seek "cognitive closure." Much of the time, it doesn't end well.

 

Kenneth Mikkelsen's insight:

Social psychologist Arie Kruglanski has found that people with a high need for closure will "seize and freeze" on the first piece of information that gives them a feeling of knowing. Others, though, prefer to resolve tension through action. Both reactions are fine if the uncertain folks in your organization happen to either settle or act on something that proves productive. But without a leader to guide them, that isn't very likely.

 

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Ken Donaldson's curator insight, May 11, 2016 6:38 AM
The Communication Guide For Leaders Who Aren't Sure What's Coming Next
David Hain's curator insight, May 12, 2016 2:46 AM

Working out the inherent contradictions of lid and still being able to make a decision is a critical skill in leading through complexity.

Curated by Kenneth Mikkelsen
Thinker ★ Speaker ★ Writer ★ Leadership Adviser ★ Learning Designer ★ Neo-Generalist

Kenneth Mikkelsen is co-founder of FutureShifts. He helps visionary companies identify and tackle the big shifts in society by cultivating the skills, mindsets, behaviours and organisational systems needed to succeed in times of change.