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Leadership With Simon Sinek: Serving Those Who Serve Others

Jonathan Fields of Good Life Project spent close to an hour in deep conversation with Sinek discussing the impact of leadership, and how we should all be pushing ourselves by asking more questions and demanding that these questions be answered in a much simpler way.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

"The worst leaders are the ones that think they have to know as much or more than the poeple who work with them." - Simon Sinek

 

Simon may be on to something basic here, in spite of his misplaced reference to evolution, his misunderstanding of the human mind when it comes to self-preservation (the first law of nature), his miscomparison of human beings to animals and the obvious implications of overlooking the moral law giver when it comes to right and wrong (the first law of human nature).  In other words, while there is nothing in evolution that explains the imperative to tell the truth as apposed to telling a lie or accounts for developing an "attitude of giving" or a wllingness to sacrifice for others, we can and should take seriously this idea of accepting that we, as leaders, don't (and can't, by definition, if you accept that teams outperform individuals even when that individual is the team lead) know more than those who work with us and every time we act as if we do, it signals the beginning of a demise and our failure as leaders. 

 

We should also altogether support Simon's rejection of the leadership of Jack Welch (GE) and his veneration of the leadership of Jim Sinegal (COSTCO). 

 

In fact, many of the ideas presented by Simon in this interview are consistent with the things I wrote about in my latest book, but we'd likely differ on the cause (whether the first or most proximate) of a Leadership - Culture - Performance connection in producing the effects being endorsed.  The obvious question now is, does it really matter where we ascribe the cause of right and effective leadership?  I believe it does matter and provide the rationale on pages 96 and 97 of Real Leadership! Are You Ready?

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Don Cloud's curator insight, October 12, 2013 10:10 AM

Kenneth, thanks for sharing! 

 

An insight-packed chat with Simon Sinek!  Worth your time!

Real Leadership! Are You Ready?
Dedicated to sharing the key concepts presented in my new book by the same title. It offers an emboldened look at what it takes to be a Real Leader. And I promise, it is not a walk in the park or snooze in the shade. By defining leadership as movement-by-appointment and introducing concepts like Leadership Platforms built and maintained around ideas like right leadership vs. wrong leadership and born-in leadership potential vs. made-in leadership performance, this topic will share insights to ignite your thinking about leadership in places you may have never before had a spark, and it will challenge you to take that new information and use it to improve your performance...brandishing the torch of an entirely new level of a personal leadership that can be used to elevate the level of leadership in your organization. I hope you enjoy and commit to using what may be discovered here, because Real Leaders are in short supply. You could be the next one. If you are ready, go to ready4realleadership.com to get started.
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Want productive, engaged team members? Create workplace dignity and respect.

Want productive, engaged team members? Create workplace dignity and respect. | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
How do leaders and team members treat each other in your workplace today? Do they interact respectfully and civilly . . . or aggressively and selfishly . . . or somewhere in between? When I ask leaders this question, they typically respond with “Well, I think they treat each other OK.” They are not confident […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Timely message, especially given the recent reports of Amazon's "bruising" workplace. Like many large organizations, there are likely more Constructive sub-cultures at various levels or in the various segments, divisions, et al., so it would be interesting to note whether their dominant culture is truly Aggressive-Defensive (A-D)--as the recent NY Times article suggests--or whether it is strong or weak in terms of the level of influence it exerts over how people truly think and behave. If A-D and strong, the more Constructive segments would certainly represent a counter-culture that is likely more in alignment with what the rest of the organization would consider "ideal" or "preferred." Either way, the current, operating culture will always emerge from the senior leadership team based on their espoused values and assumptions about people and the subsequent structures, systems, technology, and skills/qualities they put in place to drive or shape that culture and, ultimately, influence effectiveness. More importantly, there is simply far too much evidence to suggest that Amazon should immediately get to work on the A-D segments within their organizations, as Constructive norms actually enhance performance, increase adaptability and offer protection from being blind-sided by forceful and unanticipated environmental changes. Only time will tell.

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Move beyond engagement / climate and understand culture

Move beyond engagement / climate and understand culture | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Love this: "Culture is not about being cool or even being a 'best place to work.' It’s about being more successful. Period." And my good friend, Dave Guerra, discovered that strong, constructive cultures combined with stable, capable processes actually yields Superperformance (out-performing the S&P 500 by a margin of almost 5:1 over a 20 year period). Borrowing from W. Edwards Deming: "Learning [about Culture] is not compulsory...neither is survival," but it is the natural inclination and disposition of all great leaders and great organizations.  

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Knowledge is Power. Data isn’t.

Knowledge is Power. Data isn’t. | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Whenever we hear “knowledge is power,” we readily nod our heads. In organizations that thrive on a culture of learning, the theorem and its corollary are seemingly undeniable. Knowledge Theorem:  Information + Knowledge = Better Decision-Making Power Corollary:  Better Decision-making = Power The Allure of Information The “knowledge is power” idiom was originally attributed to […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

I love how Gen Colin Powell treated the balance between information/ knowledge and decision-making in his Leadership Primer: P = 40 to 70, in which the Probability of Success and the Numbers Indicate the Percentage of Information Acquired. In other words, don't wait for probability of success to exceed 70% or for more than 70% of the knowable information to become available before making a decision. On the other hand, don't rush to a decision where the probability of success and percentage of knowable information is less than 40%. But there's a catch, you need the right organizational culture to support this type of decision model. A culture where failure/ mistakes and ineffective decisions become opportunities for learning, changing, growing and leading through awareness, acceptance, action and achievement...the model for Real Leadership enrichment. Does yours?   

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12 culture change insights from a workplace culture consulting legend – Larry Senn

12 culture change insights from a workplace culture consulting legend – Larry Senn | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
One of the greatest business challenges is effectively changing a workplace culture.  What if it’s an extremely large, global corporation? Some might view it as an unsurmountable challenge.  Not Larry Senn. He has arguably been a part of more large-scale culture transformations than any other individual in the world.  He’s the founder and chairman of […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

"Culture is not an initiative. Culture is the enabler of all initiatives."

-- Larry Senn | We launch initiatives as managers to achieve organizational goals/ objectives, but launching them in a defensive culture compromises the effort before it gets underway. In contrast, launching the very same initiative in a constructive culture will yield dramatically different results. If you are interested in why this is a firm part of the reality with must contend with as Real Leaders, pick up my short eBook CultureIMPACT!: The Impact of Organizational Culture on the Efficacy of Management (Kindle Version). Spoiler Alert: It has everything to do with what Human Synergistics International calls the "Leadership-Culture-Performance Connection."  

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4 Ways to Make Leadership Development Part of Your Company Culture - Entrepreneur

4 Ways to Make Leadership Development Part of Your Company Culture - Entrepreneur | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Managers are as disengaged as the teams they are supposed to be leading. That changes when they feel invested in the company vision.
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

"Natural leaders are hard to come by." - I believe this is because there is a profound difference between potential and performance. We are all born with leadership potential, but then the hard work of converting that potential into performance begins....and it is anything but natural. Nature resists development and can only serve to reinforce defensive attributes, characteristics and traits that keep our potential trapped. Nurture, on the other hand, will release our potential and reinforce the type of constructive thinking, behavior and performance that we associate with real leadership. These opposing forces--Nature and Nurture--are constantly at work from the day we are born, and those that learn to recognize and remove natural barriers to nurturing leadership (like the suggestions in this article), first personally and then organizationally, will meet the development challenges of the 21st century. Those that don't will continue to experience failed policies that persecute profitability (i.e., the antecedents of culture), unstable processes that persecute productivity (i.e., the efficacy of management) and ineffective proxies (i.e., the antithesis of real leadership) that persecute people.

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Real Leadership! Are You Ready?: Rethinking and reframing personal and organizational potential and performance by Richard S. Dillard

Real Leadership! Are You Ready?: Rethinking and reframing personal and organizational potential and performance by Richard S. Dillard | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Real Leadership! Are You Ready?: Rethinking and reframing personal and organizational potential and performance by Richard S. Dillard
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Love and Leadership: When the second greatest commandment is “Love your neighbor as yourself,” there is a primary passage of reference placed on service ... A determined focus on, and unwavering commitment to, OTHERS is what ensures that our leadership remains effective. I simply can’t imagine a situation or scenario in life ... where we would continue to voluntarily follow someone (a leader) who we did not believe had our best interest in mind (a servant). We may give them obedience out of fear ... but this is not real followership and, by default, not Real Leadership!

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Great Leaders Serve | By Mark Miller | Culture: Light or Lightning? (Part 2)

Great Leaders Serve | By Mark Miller | Culture: Light or Lightning? (Part 2) | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
“Culture eats strategy for breakfast.” I realize this is how I began last week’s post. However, the enormity of the task makes it a great way to begin
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

No matter what, organizational culture is never left to luck, fate, chance, hope or magic. It is created by leadership...by a leader's impact. The real question is, are you addressing or ignoring your impact?

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What Is Your Character And Is It Helping Or Hurting You As A Leader?

What Is Your Character And Is It Helping Or Hurting You As A Leader? | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
What you don't know about your own character may be exactly what's hurting you and your organization.

Via Anne Leong
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

We've all heard the axiom "Character Counts!" Here's more evidence to support it. According to this study, there are "...four character habits that are universally valued across all human societies, and those are integrity, responsibility, compassion and forgiveness;" and other-focused leaders exhibit them to far greater levels than "self-focused" leaders. No surprises here. As Iv'e written elsewhere (#ready4realleadership), "excellence pursued simply because it can be done, for and with others, characterizes outstanding personal and organizational leadership performance....but only if the passion for excellence is tamed by virtues that place others squarely in and with the pursuit in an appropriate way." 

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Employee Motivation - The Traditional Approach doesn't work

Employee Motivation - The Traditional Approach doesn't work | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Employee Motivation requires companies to focus on intrinsic motivators, not the traditional extrinsic carrot & stick approach
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Autonomy, Mastery, Purpose; right on with unleashing Intrinsic Motivation to improve individual, group and organizational performance. But often it is removing the demotivators--embedded in organizational structures, systems, job design and leadership/ communication skills/ qualities--that presents the greater challenge. The answer lies in hard-wiring a different leadership-culture-performance connection. 

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7 Skills to Be a More Influential LeaderSwitch & Shift

7 Skills to Be a More Influential LeaderSwitch & Shift | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
There are qualities and skills that we use to help ensure people will listen and be influenced to take action based on our words as well as skills that, when used, encourage people to open up to them and share more readily.

Via Anne Leong
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On Leadership and Creating Good Habits of Spiritual Leaders - Linked 2 Leadership

On Leadership and Creating Good Habits of Spiritual Leaders - Linked 2 Leadership | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
On Leadership and Creating Good Habits of Spiritual Leaders
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

In order for us to break away from merely “playing with” leadership and move into the better alternative of Real Leadership through the [Leadership Enrichment LIFE-cycle] LEL-c, I believe our enrichment efforts must give serious consideration to the spiritual. And the benefits shouldn't be ignored. Along with offering an enlightened focus on who we really are,...Spiritual Intelligence helps us understand our purpose and to see things [and others] as they really are....This is of vital importance to real leaders because it is the only way we can truly learn, change, grow and lead. - Excerpt from Real Leadership! Are You Ready?

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Are you prepared for the leadership gap?

Are you prepared for the leadership gap? | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Fewer employees are aspiring to C-level roles, preferring to use their leadership skills to make a direct impact on their organizations and colleagues from their current positions. What does that mean for the future of your business?

Via Anne Leong
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

This is a rare paradigm shift back, and its about time. "Leadership is [becoming] less title-driven and more situational" and "Leadership development must be personalized." In reality, it has always been this way and there was never an exception. Thank you, millennials.

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Roy Sheneman, PhD's curator insight, April 10, 11:58 AM

Your top leadership is getting ready to retire, are you ready to handle the future?  Who will step up to leadership roles?

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The risky business of leadership development | SmartBlogs

The risky business of leadership development | SmartBlogs | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Business success today demands careful attention to risk management. Contingency plans, redundant systems, business continuity insurance, and countless oth
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

In addition to the idea of "moderate risk taking"--one of five Roots of Excellence I first learned from Dr. J. Clayton Lafferty--when developing leaders, I'd add that both the leader providing the development opportunity and the leader being developed must also have a good grasp of the other 4 roots: passion for excellence, belief in cause and effect, confidence that effort counts (not just results) and a desire for feedback.

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Happiness as a Core Component of a Thriving Organization

Happiness as a Core Component of a Thriving Organization | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Have you ever felt like a donkey chasing a carrot that is always tantalizingly just beyond reach? Maybe it’s not a carrot you’re chasing, but if you’ve ever found yourself thinking, “I’ll be happy when…” then you’ll understand.  Whether it’s striving for a promotion at work, dreaming of retirement or just trying to survive until […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

I came across this article today about the same time I learned of the incredible young man, Jaden Hayes, from Savannah, GA. If you aren't familiar, he's a 6-year old who recently launched a "smile campaign" so that he could put happiness into the lives of others. Significant on its own merit, but even more so because Jaden lost his father at the age of four and just woke up last month to discover that his mother had died unexpectedly in her sleep. Young Jaden Hayes, at the age of six, has developed a simple yet profound knowledge about not just overcoming adversity, but also the importance of serving and giving in the process. More importantly, he has closed the knowing-doing gap far ahead of the rest of us. We could all learn a lesson. Thank you, Jaden, for setting the example and placing the bar high for the rest of us.  

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Trust: Going Beyond Compliance and Ethics

Trust: Going Beyond Compliance and Ethics | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
“Every enterprise requires commitment to common goals and shared values. Without such commitment there is no enterprise; there is only a mob. The enterprise must have simple, clear, and unifying objectives. The mission of the organization has to be clear enough and big enough to provide common vision. The goals that embody it have to […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

There is right and wrong leadership. In a post-modern era that
has made it politically incorrect to talk about right and wrong while simultaneously over-relying on massive code of ethics policies to encourage right behavior (remember ENRON had an industry leading code of ethics policy), it is important to note that “effective” leadership does not equal “right” leadership. - Excerpt from Real Leadership! Are You Ready?

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You, The Truth and Nothing But Your Leadership! - Linked 2 Leadership

You, The Truth and Nothing But Your Leadership! - Linked 2 Leadership | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Leadership certainly appears to be among the most overused terms of the 21st Century...
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

What do you think of this? Looking for feedback on how and when newness in leadership appears. Is it really something new and never before discovered, or simply something new for the individual who is committed to doing what it takes to become a Real Leader...to change the impact they are having on others by letting feedback penetrate their learning, changing, growing and leading through awareness, acceptance, action and achievement?

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The Leadership Lessons I Learned from Being Fired

The Leadership Lessons I Learned from Being Fired | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Read about the leadership lessons learned from being fired by Fortune 500 executive Henna Inam.
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

I can relate! Though the circumstances surrounding my two lay-offs and one termination in the five years between 2004 and 2009 were a little different than Henna's, they had the same effect of producing some valuable leadership lessons. I count these extremely challenging events in my professional life among the most important non-neutral learning opportunities I've had over the past 31 years of my career. And while Henna's point about vulnerability is spot-on, it does come with a "uneasy" catch. As I've written elsewhere: "Because non-neutral learning events often place us in a vulnerable position before others, we can easily choose to ignore them, leaving us in the doom-loop of oscillating between 'getting ready' and 'being unwilling.' When I’ve been ready and willing, every non-neutral learning event has contributed in a unique way to personal intimacy (a.k.a., into-me-see). This may seem like a strange term to use, but 'personal intimacy' easily translates into self-familiarity, self-understanding and self-confidence, all of which are essential to enriching leadership." -- Real Leadership! Are You Ready?

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Can We Reverse the Decline in Trust?

Can We Reverse the Decline in Trust? | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Distrust is the new normal. There has been a dramatic decline over at least the past 15 years in almost every sector of our society—distrust of the police, government, financial institutions, ethnic groups, and even each other. “Distrust” is the headline every night on the news. Trust vs. Fear as a performance driver In the […]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

We can reverse distrust and remove fear through personal leadership platforms that include Trust as part of the footing that lies beneath our foundation and framing. A leadership platform built on trust and reinforced by personal accountability is incredibly stable and capable of standing the World's tests of both time and torrent. This is possible because, as history reveals and science verifies, constructive relationships become a conduit for information exchange (i.e., communication for learning), and in the process of approaching one another and our successful work in this way we create a new vision of potential for the team, the organization and the world. Barriers break down, paradigms shift and a whole new level of thinking begins to form around becoming our best.

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Memorial Day-2015

Memorial Day-2015 | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

As a United States Marine I spend a great deal of time on developing leadership-sometimes as an instructor; always as a student. It has been this way since I first "Earned the Title" on August 31, 1984. But on this and every Memorial Day, any reference to leadership ought rightly to be made exclusively in honor and remembrance of those who made the ultimate sacrifice. May we never forget the rich heritage we've been given by their selflessness, and may we continually repay that debt with our gratitude. In memoriam of who they were and what they did, SEMPER FI! 

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Positive Teams Are More Productive

Positive Teams Are More Productive | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
Research-based ways to make your employees happier.

Via Vilma Bonilla
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Not surprising to see Leadership and Culture top the list of things we should be addressing in order to create a more positive impact. And instead of placing this in terms of positive vs negative, consider effective vs ineffective when it comes to leadership, and constructive vs defensive when it comes to culture. 

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Vilma Bonilla's curator insight, March 18, 11:46 PM

Make sense, right? I'm all about it Baby! All too often though, we see negative, cynical attitudes adopted. This post provides some excellent suggestions to make positivity happen! ❤️

Dale Carnegie Training North Central US's curator insight, March 21, 10:31 PM

What organizational-related topics are most important to you right now?
 

Dale Carnegie Training's Quarterly Pulse Survey of 23,000 leaders revealed “employee engagement” and “change management” are exponentially more popular than other expressions. Contact us to learn how we equip organizations to assess "soft skills" training ROI.

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Driving Employee Engagement through Leadership | Leadership | Training Industry

Driving Employee Engagement through Leadership | Leadership | Training Industry | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
There are multiple drivers of employee engagement, from pride in working for the company to having a voice in the way things operate. However, the impact of the relationship with the direct manager is a constant.

Via TechinBiz
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Spot on...relationships for Real Leaders (#ready4realleadership) matter. Engagement is what happens when leaders treat those in their organizational down-line as their primary customers--as those who benefit most from their leadership products and services. 

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On Leadership, Forgiveness and The Authentic Leader - Linked 2 Leadership

On Leadership, Forgiveness and The Authentic Leader - Linked 2 Leadership | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
The roots connecting forgiveness to leadership in the organizational context run deep in the servant model.
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Real leaders understand and practice the virtue of forgiveness.

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Providing the 'Context' for Leadership Learning

Providing the 'Context' for Leadership Learning | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
‘Providing the context for leadership learning’If you ask most leaders about leadership development, they will often associate this with formal classroom training.
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

Contextual learning, or what my good friend Anastasia Hansel refers to as non-neutral learning opportunities, is where it's at when it comes to leadership development. But we have to also remember that success here rises and falls on the leader's personal commitment and openness to learning. The notion that we can develop someone else's leadership (or even aid in the effort through coaching/ mentoring without their consent) is erroneous. Sticking someone who is unwilling to learn, change, grow and lead into a classroom for textual learning or into the best environments for contextual learning is like mapping out a journey from a starting point that will never enable you to reach the target destination. First identify those who want learn about leadership and they will personally take care of the development. 

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The #1 Workplace Culture ChallengeSwitch & Shift

The #1 Workplace Culture ChallengeSwitch & Shift | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
The word “culture” has lost its meaning due to the proliferation of over-simplified and inconsistent workplace culture content that’s all over the popular press. CEO’s know culture is important but there is a complete lack of clarity surroundin [...]
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

As my good friend, Dave Guerra, writes in The Superperforming CEO; the chapter on Measuring Things Hardly Measured: "The new frontier of intangible value is corporate culture."

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The 4 Biggest Myths About Leadership

The 4 Biggest Myths About Leadership | Real Leadership! Are You Ready? | Scoop.it
A lot of people who think they understand leadership have fallen for some common myths and misconceptions. It's best to learn what these myths are so we uncover the truth.
Richard Dillard, PMP, SSBB, ABD 7.1's insight:

These are basic to a proper understanding of Real Leadership! I would only modify one of Daskal's conclusions: True leadership can ONLY be awarded, appointed or assigned by those who choose to follow your lead.

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