Surviving Leadership Chaos
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Surviving Leadership Chaos
" We make a living by what we get, we make a life by what we give. " - Winston Churchill
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How to Take Control of Your Physical Inbox

How to Take Control of Your Physical Inbox | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
You may have a system for managing your digital inbox, but what about your physical one? This may seem obvious, but a peak at a few of your colleagues desks—or perhaps your own!—will convince you otherwise.

 

If you are like me, 90 percent of your communication is digital. It is done via email, Twitter, or instant messaging. However, I still have a physical inbox. I get letters, an occasional paper memo, a handwritten note, paper reports, brochures, catalogs, etc.


So where does all this stuff go and how do you manage it? This may seem obvious, but a peek at a few of your colleagues desks—or perhaps your own!—will convince you otherwise.

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9 Reasons You’re Stuck Where You Are

9 Reasons You’re Stuck Where You Are | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Practical Tips for Productive Living...

 

Life is change; it is forever moving. Staying stuck is a choice.

 

For it is a choice, not a chance, that determines your destiny. The road may be long, but it’s wide open. As Lao Tzu once said, “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” If you don’t like the way your life is at the moment, you have the choice to change it. Actually, you owe it to yourself to change it. But you can only shift your current situation one small step at a time.

 

In other words, to get through even the most difficult times and circumstances you need to take baby steps, and you must keep on stepping.

 

So if you feel stuck right now, it means you aren’t stepping. And it’s probably because…


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The Magic of Motivation!

The Magic of Motivation! | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Motivation is the essence of life!

 

Motivation is the essence of life! History has proved time and again that many great feats were achieved due to the motivation caused by both animate and inanimate things.

 

Echo, an inanimate thing, motivated Marconi to invent Radio waves which paved the way for future inventions which include the latest mobile telephony and the internet. Birds’ flight motivated the Wright Brothers to invent Aeroplane which led to the latest inventions of super sonic jets whose speed can beat the speed of sound.

 

The population explosion in our planet Earth always motivates the space scientists to probe the possibility for human settlements in the planet like Mars.

 

We can learn from history that sometimes Awe-inspiring natural events could be a motivational force. For instance the unimaginable height of the Mount Everest motivated Tenzing to scale the summit with minimal gadget and comforts.


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10 Remarkable Qualities of Wise Leaders

10 Remarkable Qualities of Wise Leaders | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
10 remarkable qualities of wise leaders

 

Wisdom is practical not theoretical; skillful not academic. Wisdom gets things done. Fools sit and talk while the wise move out. I’m not suggestion it’s foolish to explore options and discuss plans. I’m saying wise leaders add more value than foolish.

 

On the other hand, foolish leaders don’t talk enough. If this seems contradictory with what I said before, it is.

 

You need wisdom and the ability to identify wisdom.

 

 


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Leadership - Why Talent Is Overrated

Leadership - Why Talent Is Overrated | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Talent, in and of itself, is highly overrated. While not all leaders will develop their talents and abilities to the same level, all successful leaders more or less begin with the same foundation.

 

Talent, in and of itself, is highly overrated. While not all leaders will develop their talents and abilities to the same level, all successful leaders more or less begin with the same foundation. Here’s the thing – most foundational elements of leadership require no skill or talent whatsoever.


Clearly the difference possessed by all great leaders is they continue to refine, develop and build from their foundation – they understand leadership is not a destination; it’s a continuum.  The best leaders combine attitude, effort and skill, but of the three, skill is the least important.  When in doubt, always choose attitude over aptitude. In today’s column I’ll share 6 leadership characteristics that require zero talent or skill.

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Hello, Emotional Style! A Look at the Emotional Life of Your Brain

Hello, Emotional Style! A Look at the Emotional Life of Your Brain | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

In his 2012 book, neuroscientist Richard J. Davidson introduces Emotional Style, a scientifically supportable way to understand our individual characteristics and traits.

“Anything having to do with human behavior, feelings, and ways of thinking arises from the brain,” points out Psychologist Richard J. Davidson, director of the Laboratory for Affective Neuroscience at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Therefore, when it comes to human typing he says, “any valid classification scheme must also be based on the brain.”

 

This almost seems like a no-brainer. But the old systems for classifying personality are fun and popular—and most people aren’t bothered by the fact that they are “light on scientific validity,” as Davidson tactfully puts it.

 

In The Emotional Life of Your Brain, Davidson introduces what his research has uncovered about emotional styles. He also shows us how to identify ours--and how we can change it if it's not working for us.


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100 Best Quotes On Leadership

100 Best Quotes On Leadership | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Below are 100 quotes on the subject of leadership:

 

A leader is best when people barely know he exists, when his work is done, his aim fulfilled, they will say: we did it ourselves. —Lao Tzu


Where there is no vision, the people perish. —Proverbs 29:18


I must follow the people. Am I not their leader? —Benjamin Disraeli


You manage things; you lead people. —Rear Admiral Grace Murray Hopper


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Leadership Means Simplifying the Business

Leadership Means Simplifying the Business | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
 “Simplicity is the ultimate form of sophistication.” – Leonardo Da Vinci

 

Last week, I attended a meeting to review a new prospecting tool. During the discussion, I heard the following phrases: “boil the ocean,” “drill-down,” “drive alignment,” “leverage and orchestrate,” “low hanging fruit,” “optimize workloads,” “prescriptive guidance,” “track and attack,” etc. The business-speak made it difficult to understand how we were going to use the tool. Feeling similar to me, another member of the leadership team said, “So, the purpose of this tool is to help us identify new sales opportunities within our existing accounts, correct?” Clear. Simple. Thank you!


Effective leaders make complexity simple to create common understanding across the organization.

 

In fact, if you review the meetings and presentations that you attended in the last two weeks, who got the most traction with their ideas? Speakers that made things complex and tedious. Or, speakers that articulated their positions in a simple, straightforward manner. As a general rule, complexity occurs for one of two reasons: the person does not have a thorough command of the subject matter or the person has poor communication skills.


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The Need for Innovative Leadership

The Need for Innovative Leadership | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

I asked the following question today on Twitter:

 

If the mandate is for innovation, how much should “best practice” drive that?

 

This question has been stuck in my head from while I have been reading the book, “Humanize“, which has really challenged and pushed my own thinking on “innovation” and how the culture of social media should be a culture that is embedded into our organizations.

 

Here is one of the quotes from the book that started to create that connection:...


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5 Ways Executives Can Participate in Social Business

5 Ways Executives Can Participate in  Social Business | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
One of the most important criteria of a social business is executive level participation. 5 ways executives can participate in a social business.

 

I recently wrote a blog post about the 5 characteristics of a social business, and I’ve previously provided my slide deck on the topic from speaking gigs on the topic. One of the most important criteria of a social business is executive level participation. Simply stated when the C suite gets it, the organization is well positioned to become a social business.

 

The “C suite” is typically the phrase that represents the highest ranking executives starting with the Chief Executive Officer or CEO. Executive titles vary from business to business. So, if “C” titles don’t apply in your organization, don’t sweat it. Just apply these ideas to the top managers running your company.


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Four Ways Leaders Ignite Engagement Culture

Four Ways Leaders Ignite Engagement Culture | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

There are leaders who engage naturally with people, and leaders who are simply uncomfortable with engagement at a human level. The former have an advantage over the latter, clearly. Engaged leaders work with employees; those who shun engagement have employees who work for them, not necessarily with them.

 

It’s a distinction with a difference. The engaged leader brings people together to serve a common cause; the disengaged leader hires people and tells them what to do, but never really gives them the reason ‘why’.


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The Twinkie Template For Building An Eternal Brand

The Twinkie Template For Building An Eternal Brand | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
In the last couple of weeks, have you ever heard so much about Twinkies? I mean, since you were six years old?

 

Twinkies have been the butt of jokes in shows like Family Guy and movies likeWall-E. Any brand faces challenges, but if it's carefully built, it can be strong enough to sustain almost any bad press. Here's how to make sure your personal brand is up to the Twinkie standard.

 

n case you missed our recent national panic attack, America collectively gasped when it was announced that the Hostess snack food company was going out of business due to a labor dispute and, as a result, its flagship product, Twinkies, would soon disappear from store shelves.

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To Change the Culture, Stop Trying to "Change the Culture"

To Change the Culture, Stop Trying to "Change the Culture" | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Instead, start with a few small successes.

 

When people aren't achieving what they should be achieving and things aren't going the way they should be — and if senior managers can't pin the blame on some specific issue — they often declare: "We have to change the culture around here."

 

Not many of them feel they know how to do that, so an army of consultants has obliged by creating processes for help. Most of these experts recommend beginning with a diagnosis of the present culture. After the diagnosis you need to get clear about where you want to head. That's another piece of work. Then you have to plan how you are going to get there.

 

Finally, when you are ready to get moving, the consultants are happy to jump aboard to help implement a multitude of programs — training, re-organization, systems redesign, and communications campaigns. A Google search on the term "organizational culture change programs" yields 273,000,000 entries.


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Trumans's curator insight, December 19, 2012 5:19 PM

Getting your firm's culture "right" is something that requires more than just hope....

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The Power of a Single Compliment

The Power of a Single Compliment | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Sure, you know by now that praising employees goes a long way when it comes to job performance. But you may be surprised at just how powerful a kind word can be.

 

Sure, you know by now that praising employees goes a long way when it comes to job performance. But you may be surprised at just how powerful a kind word can be.

 

In a recent study conducted by Japanese scientists, researchers found that people tend to perform a task better after receiving just a single compliment.

 

In the study, 48 adults were trained to push keys on a keyboard in a sequential pattern as fast as possible. After training took place, the participants divided into three groups according to whether they were complimented for their performance, complimented for another participant’s performance or were not complimented at all.

 

When they were asked to complete the finger-tapping exercise the following day, researchers found that those who were complimented after their training performed significantly better on the exercise than the other groups did.


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Telecommuting Increases Work Hours and Blurs Boundary Between Work and Home

Telecommuting Increases Work Hours and Blurs Boundary Between Work and Home | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
New sociology study from The University of Texas at Austin shows telecommuters are significantly less likely to work a standard 40 hour schedule and more likely to work overtime than their office-working counterparts.

 

With fluctuating gas prices and the increasing call for work-life balance, telecommuting has become an attractive option for busy professionals. Yet according to a new study from The University of Texas at Austin, for most employees who work remotely, telecommuting equates to working more hours.


The study, co-authored by Jennifer Glass, professor in the Department of Sociology and the Population Research Center, shows that most of the 30 percent of respondents who work from home add five to seven hours to their workweek compared with those who work exclusively at the office. They are also significantly less likely to work a standard 40 hour schedule and more likely to work overtime. In fact, most telecommuting hours occur after an employee has already put in 40 hours of work at the office.


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Leadership and Revelry

Leadership and Revelry | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
I believe in the value of leadership and the power of revelry.

 

Leaders develop our ability to bring out our truest, best selves. They are able to recognize and appreciate who we are, and who we can be. Good leaders can perceive how our abilities fit with their own values, and how we can work together well. Great leaders have vision that sees us in ways we may never have seen ourselves. The help us celebrate our true selves.

 

Leaders inspire, and stretch, me when they find the ways our shared values and vision create ways we can work together well.


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How Leaders Can Avoid Shiny Objects, Black Holes, Fire Drills and Other Dangerous Distractions

How Leaders Can Avoid Shiny Objects, Black Holes, Fire Drills and Other Dangerous Distractions | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
One of the greatest challenges of leadership is managing time, a limited resource that has to be used with the utmost care and consideration.

 

One of the greatest challenges of leadership is managing time, a limited resource that has to be used with the utmost care and consideration.

 

As the saying goes, there are “only so many hours in a day“, and the leader must be able to stay focused on those tasks and activities that truly matter.

 

That task is complicated by the daily presence of many distractions that the leader must avoid, lest putting themselves (and their company) in jeopardy.

 

There are three distractions that are particularly dangerous:

 

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The Five Powers of Leadership Rituals

The Five Powers of Leadership Rituals | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Rituals express conscious intentions not unconscious habit.

 

Innovative leaders wrongly resist patterns. They fear repetition constricts and bores. “Don’t fence me in.”

 

However, rituals set leaders free.

 

Think of rituals as tiny behaviors that yield disproportionate benefits. One of mine is rising early and placing my fingers on the keyboard. It’s 3:44 a.m. as I type this. I wasn’t sure what would come out until I touched the keys.

 

Rituals express conscious intentions not unconscious habit.


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The Ultimate Management Test: Are Your Leaders Creating Leaders?

The Ultimate Management Test: Are Your Leaders Creating Leaders? | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
The conventional view of leadership is of something done by heroic soloists. Nothing could be further from the truth.

 

The myth of heroic leadership--soloism--is ancient and pervasive.

 

A few weeks ago, I met with a tremendous business leader. He runs a multi-billion dollar energy business that is global, complex, and volatile. An engineer by training, he's alert both to the political and the financial stresses that impact his industry and--like all his competitors--he's trying to keep up with the new energy technologies that could transform his business.

 

But that wasn't what he wanted to talk about. What concerns him most are the leaders within his organization. He knows that they're all smart and that they work all the hours available. (Some, crossing time zones, even work more.)

 

But what he worries about is this: Are his leaders creating leaders?


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3 Easy Tricks that Make You a Better Public Speaker

3 Easy Tricks that Make You a Better Public Speaker | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
It’s no secret that the fear of public speaking is one of the most often cited phobias on the planet..

 

It’s no secret that the fear of public speaking is one of the most often cited phobias on the planet. Getting up in front of an audience and giving a presentation is often deemed scarier than the highest of heights, the largest of spiders and the darkest of dark rooms. Really, it’s no wonder that, given the chance, most of us would trade away our life’s savings for a world without public speaking!

 

Of course, it doesn’t matter how scary public speaking might seem. All of us will be called on to give public presentations at some point or another in our lives, so it’s worth figuring out how to make the process more comfortable for everyone involved before you’re actually up on stage.


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Leadership Lessons from the 6th Grade

Leadership Lessons from the 6th Grade | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Some of the most exciting and rewarding sessions I delivered this year were the ones I facilitated with sixth graders at a local school.

 

During the sessions, follow-up conversations, meetings and graduation, I was intrigued by many of the comments made by the students as they shared their views on leadership. I made it a point to capture some of their most meaningful observations.


Here are a few priceless comments from these wise leaders:


~Leadership is doing something special or hard

~Seeing the best in others instead of being mean


~Keep in mind a person’s strengths even when they make me mad

~If I am wrong, I learn something


~Social responsibility is being loyal to your friends

~Leadership is getting things done and having fun

 

~Doing my best work and being OK when I am not at my best


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Cruise Line Class's curator insight, December 11, 2012 10:10 PM

I enjoyed reading this article.  6th graders observations about leadership is wonderful!

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How to Deliver Critical Feedback that Sticks

How to Deliver Critical Feedback that Sticks | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Effective leaders often say they prefer to earn employees’ respect than to befriend them. The test comes when these bosses need to dish out criticism.

 

If you want to be liked by employees, you may muzzle your critical feedback for fear that they will take it the wrong way. It’s easier to keep quiet or drop in­­direct hints rather than come right out and say, “Let’s discuss how your performance needs to improve.”

 

To express criticism that sinks in, take these steps:


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Daniel Watson's curator insight, December 5, 2012 6:19 AM


Business owners often struggle when it comes to delivering critical feedback to an employee, especially when aspects of the employees performance, leave much to be desired.


Unfortunately, if a business owner or manager wants their critical feedback to be accepted by the employee, the feedback must be direct and not be delivered as hints or polite requests for certain changes to take place.


This good article, suggests employees need to be told upfront what exactly the relevant issue is, and it then suggests three steps to take to ensure that the critical feedback is received appropriately and the message sinks in in a way that will result in the requested outcomes.


Bond Beebe Accountants & Advisors's curator insight, December 18, 2012 8:29 AM

Providing effective feedback is an essential skill for managers at every level.  As this piece suggests, offering concrete, detailed direction is key to employee success.

 

ThinDifference's curator insight, March 10, 2013 9:47 AM

Great three step way to deliver feedback. We need to me more intentional in our feedback so all involved get better in what we do.

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8 Cognitive Biases That Will Make or Break Your Culture

8 Cognitive Biases That Will Make or Break Your Culture | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

In HR we often rely on common sense. But there is a dark side to common sense that HR needs to stay aware of.

 

Sometimes our instincts will steer us the wrong way.

 

Behavioral psychologists call this “cognitive bias”. It will affect perceptions, it will affect objectivity, and it will affect relationships—in both positive and negative ways. That makes it very relevant to culture management and to you.


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Coaching: It’s All About Hearing the Truth You Don’t Want to Hear

Coaching: It’s All About Hearing the Truth You Don’t Want to Hear | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Recently I was on a panel with a client of mine. We had been coaching for about 12 months when we were invited to talk about our coaching relationship. She started the discussion by saying, “Linda ...

 

Recently I was on a panel with a client of mine. We had been coaching for about 12 months when we were invited to talk about our coaching relationship. She started the discussion by saying, “Linda was my second choice as a coach.” Everyone in the room laughed at this!

 

Then my client continued. “I had interviewed another coach prior to meeting Linda. I loved the other coach. There was great chemistry. During the interview with Linda, she made me very angry. It was on a Friday, and I was angry all weekend. I was stewing because I knew that the first coach would become a good friend, and that Linda would help me get where I wanted to go.”

 

This is not the first time this situation has occurred. I remember another interview several years ago.

 

That gentleman was so angry that he said he didn’t even want referrals from me to other coaches. He’d find them himself! Several weeks later, he contacted me again and said, “I’ve interviewed 4 other coaches, and the voice I keep hearing in my head is yours. You told me the truth I didn’t want to hear.”

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