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 Give Yourself an Edge in Making 2013 Your Best Year Ever

How to Give Yourself an Edge in Making 2013 Your Best Year Ever | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
One of my most important mentors (and closest friends) is Robert D. Smith. His new book, 20,000 Days and Counting, wisdom and inspiration you need to start this year right.
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): 

What I have never revealed until now is that he is also one of my most important mentors. His words and life have inspired me to think bigger, push harder, and strive for excellence in everything I do.

 

Here are just ten of lessons I have learned from him.

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11 Productivity Hacks From Super-Productive People

11 Productivity Hacks From Super-Productive People | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Productivity is a hot topic at Fast Company, and one that our contributors and the CEO types we cover spend time thinking about (efficiently, before crossing it off a list, of course).
donhornsby's insight:

The following is a great comment from the article: 

 

Keep Email From Crushing You With "OHIO"

That stands for "only handle it once"--a technique that's espoused by productivity expert Bob Pozen and practiced by Huge CEO and Fast Company contributor Aaron Shapiro.

 

"No 'I'll respond later' is allowed," Shapiro says. "Responding later means you take three times longer to get through your email than taking care of it the first time, because responding later means you have to waste time finding and rereading that email... or even worse, the time wasted reminding yourself over and over to get to that message."

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Five Self-Defeating Behaviors that Ruin Companies and Careers

Five Self-Defeating Behaviors that Ruin Companies and Careers | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
In turbulent times, it's hard enough to deal with external problems. But too often people and companies exacerbate their troubles by their own actions. Self-defeating behaviors can make any situation worse. Put these five on the what-not-to-do list.

Via Richard Andrews
donhornsby's insight:

A good list to ponder.....(From the article): Humility prevents self-defeat. A desire to serve others, an emphasis on values and purpose, a sense of responsibility for long-term consequences, and knowledge of both strengths and limitations can make it easier to avoid these traps.

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Leadership – If not now, when?

Leadership – If not now, when? | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
The writing is on the wall.  Senseless wars, self-absorbed employees, greedy bosses, financial woes and social ills…some days, it feels like there are more problems than solutions, and no leaders stepping up to solve them.

Via Maya Mathias, AlGonzalezinfo
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): Think back to a time when you got worked up about a lack of leadership.  It could be at work, in your community or your country.  What fired you up?

 

And if it DIDN’T ignite any strong feelings in you, why not?  Are you content to live the rest of your life standing for…nothing?  What do you want your legacy to be when you die?  Again, there’s no judgement either way.  I’m just asking the question.

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Maya Mathias's curator insight, December 27, 2012 12:44 AM

Leading is a simple act of human decency.  Deciding to lead...that's where the rubber meets the road.  What will you decide?

AlGonzalezinfo's curator insight, December 30, 2012 6:50 AM

Time to understand our role in conflict and how to lead away from it.   Great post Maya Mathias, it does start with everyone of us.  

 

The graphic comes from the following youtube animation and it relates to this topic:  

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfJYP3guo18

Maya Mathias's comment, December 30, 2012 12:46 PM
Thank you all for your kind words and rescoops!
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5 Big Discoveries About Leadership in 2012

5 Big Discoveries About Leadership in 2012 | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Bad management appears to be an epidemic, costing the economy a total of $360 billion every year in lost productivity. 65% of employees say they would take a new boss over a pay raise, and 3 out of every 4 employees say their boss is the most stressful part of their job.

 

It’s not like we’re not trying: according to the American Society for Training and Development, in 2011, U.S. firms spent about $156 billion on corporate training.

 

Against this backdrop, what have we learned in 2012 that might help us improve the quality of leadership? Here are five of the bigger findings.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen
donhornsby's insight:

(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

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Kenneth Mikkelsen's curator insight, December 29, 2012 5:35 AM

(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.

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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5 Big Discoveries About Personal Effectiveness in 2012

5 Big Discoveries About Personal Effectiveness in 2012 | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
The science of self-improvement never ceases. Every year brings dozens of new quirky findings about how to be more effective, whether in managing our time, being more creative or just getting things done. Here are some of the highlights for me from 2012.
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): We live in a time when where more people are staying connected on vacations. People have forgotten how important it is for your mind to rejuvenate. Research shows that naps improve productivity—a growing body of evidence shows that taking regular breaks from mental tasks improves productivity and creativity — and that skipping breaks can lead to stress and exhaustion.

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Kenneth Mikkelsen's curator insight, December 29, 2012 4:52 AM

This is a fine recap of the latest insights and research in this field. Good work from David Rock, who is the founder of the Neuro Leadership Institute. I had the pleasure of talking to David a few years ago for an article about the influence of neuro science in our modern business world.  

Kenneth Mikkelsen's comment, December 29, 2012 4:54 AM
Thanks for making me aware of this blog post, Don. Happy holiday season to you. Best, Kenneth
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A Twist to Unplugging

A Twist to Unplugging | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

The thought of unplugging makes sense, yet it is challenging to do. Maybe “unplug” is too mild of a word. Maybe we should use “pull the plug.” It has a stronger action associated with it, so maybe we would be more inclined to do it.

donhornsby's insight:

(Key thought from article): What unplug does not mean, however, is disengaging from the community around us. We need to serve where we are. It can be with our neighbors next door or our community in another part of town. Our communities need us, and we need to take on this responsibility.

 

It is an important twist on unplug. Unplugging as an individual enables us to catch our breath, but it cannot be an excuse to ignore our communities.

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Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf 1934-2012

Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf 1934-2012 | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Retired Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, who commanded the U.S.-led international coalition that drove Saddam Hussein's forces out of Kuwait in 1991, died today at age 78 due to complications from pneumonia. He lived in retirement in Tampa, where he had served in his last military assignment as commander-in-chief of U.S. Central Command.

donhornsby's insight:

(From the article) On Leadership Development 
You learn far more from negative leadership than from positive leadership. Because you learn how not to do it. And, therefore, you learn how to do it.

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The Power of Teams: A Lesson In Leadership From A Siberian Husky

The Power of Teams: A Lesson In Leadership From A Siberian Husky | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
As we reflect on 2012 at Zenger Folkman, we think of the opportunities we’ve had to observe the way many organizations are able to operate as teams. Invariably, the companies that focus on teamwork and collaboration are the companies who maximize the strengths of individuals as well.  Why? Because being a part of an effective team can bring forth wonderful increases in the work ethic and strength attributes of the individuals as well.
donhornsby's insight:

(From the Article): In summary, we all know the difference between a great team and a bad team.  The challenge I would like to leave with each of you as we enter 2013 is to create a great team environment. If you can accomplish this goal, the reward is not only high productivity, but also employees who love to come to work, and who are bursting with excitement and energy to accomplish their job.

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How Saving $5 A Day Can Change Your Life

How Saving $5 A Day Can Change Your Life | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

How many times do you spend $5 each day? That morning coffee, a quick sandwich at lunch, a snack at the gas station after work, or a drink out with friends at night can all cost $5 or more. What if you decided to not purchase one of those items each day? What if you made your coffee at home instead of buying it at a fancy coffee shop? What if you packed your own sandwich or decided to get waterinstead of a coke when you went out at a restaurant? Many people will say they don’t want to give up life’s little luxuries, but here’s what could happen if you did and saved the money instead.


Via Barb Jemmott
donhornsby's insight:

(Key Thought): This could change your life significantly if you, for example, rode a bike every day and got in great shape. It could also barely affect your life if you only got to enjoy your new shoes every now and then. So why not save $5 a day for a little longer?

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The Importance of Collaborating with the Right People

The Importance of Collaborating with the Right People | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

I have come to believe that to survive and ultimately thrive we must effectively create partnerships with everyone around us, from family to colleagues to society in general.

 

The word partner conjures up many connotations, such as collaboration, equality, teamwork, trust, alliance, support and reliability. These are qualities that we look for in both personal and professional relationships. The people we surround ourselves with can often make the difference between failure and survival. It’s not only who we surround ourselves with that matters, but how we interact with them that makes the difference.

 

The Partnership Principle

 

Every partnership involves two or more parties who work together to achieve a common purpose or undertake a specific task while sharing risks, responsibilities, resources, competencies and benefits. It’s a voluntary collaborative agreement that must evolve to meet the needs of everyone involved.

donhornsby's insight:

Henry Ford famously said: “Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.”

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The One Thing Your Team Wants You to Stop Doing

The One Thing Your Team Wants You to Stop Doing | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

The other day, on the sidelines of a conference, a bright young manager sought my advice. "I've tried using different leadership styles, but I can't seem to dispel my team's sense of disengagement," he confessed. "I don't understand what I'm doing wrong."

 

"Why don't you ask your team?" I asked him.

 

The reply surprised him, but there's no point in complicating leadership. As I described in a previous post, time-tested leadership traits are quite simple to adopt. Yet, as recent reports confirm, there's a growing disconnect between teams and managers. Why?

donhornsby's insight:

(From the Article): These aren't isolated cases. As confirmed by the Kelly Global Workforce Index in September 2012, which studied the Leadership Disconnect in 30 countries, less than 4 out of 10 employees (38%) are satisfied with their current management's leadership styles. So if you see a decline in your team's enthusiasm, it may not necessarily be the economy! You may want to check if there's a disconnect between your leadership style and your team's expectations.

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In Praise Of The Open Mind: A Year-End Meditation on Leadership

In Praise Of The Open Mind: A Year-End Meditation on Leadership | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
It’s that time for reflection – on the year that is about to pass, and what’s to come in the year ahead.

 

What I’m realizing through this deep dive in my cranium is that leadership should never be a “static” thing.

donhornsby's insight:

(From the article):That is, leadership is a constant evolution, supported by a core foundation of a passion to serve and intellectual curiosity, and fueled by experience and external change.

 

Those who accept that reality will thrive, grow, and have a chance for greatness.

 

Those who do not, and close their minds and their hearts around a fixed and immutable view of the way leadership should work, will fail.

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Make Room for the New Year

Make Room for the New Year | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

There’s something about the new year that brings out the organizer in all of us. Maybe it’s the desire to start fresh, wipe away the previous year, or start over.

I started 2013 by organizing my garage. Big deal, right?

donhornsby's insight:

(From the article) Doesn’t it make sense that the more space you have, the more things you’ll keep? Think about it…it’s easier to stick something on a shelf in case you need it some day (something my clients always say), than to decide whether you really need to keep it.

 

So this new year, take a look at your closets, bookcases, cabinets, your garage, or storage space — not in one day, it’s too overwhelming — and see if you can get rid of a few things you’re no longer using.

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5 Things Business Can Learn from a Tree

5 Things Business Can Learn from a Tree | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
I am always noticing metaphors, symbols, patterns. For a long time I have noticed the powerful principles embodied in the design and structure of a tree as it relates to business. I hope it helps your business like it has helped ours…

Via JLAndrianarisoa
donhornsby's insight:

Great points.  Especially number 2: Focus, focus, focus.

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5 Unconventional Tips for Finding and Following Your Passion

5 Unconventional Tips for Finding and Following Your Passion | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

There are a lot of people today that are fresh out of college or university, and they don’t know what to do.

Or maybe someone has lost their job, and they are staring into the dark abyss of the future without a clue as to where to start.

All of this can seem scary, but it’s an opportunity for change.

You are no longer the person you were when you started on your current path, and if you want to be fulfilled, you have to be willing to leap into the unknown and find what makes you come alive.

donhornsby's insight:

Here are 5 quick tips for finding and following your passion:...

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The Secret Ingredient of Brilliant Leaders and Managers

The Secret Ingredient of Brilliant Leaders and Managers | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

I have only come across a handful of brilliant leaders and managers in my working career.

 

The ingredient these people shared was, they were intrinsically drawn to “doing the right thing”. The “right thing” for these leaders and managers wasn’t always popular. The act of choosing for them was sometimes personally agonising, but they still made those decisions.

 

When questioned, many leaders and managers know what “doing the right thing” is, but quite often,  mysteriously,  they just don’t make that decision.  Thus, opportunities are lost, credibility is questioned and results are lower than expected.

donhornsby's insight:

(From the Article): When leaders and managers don’t understand how to manage difference whether it is psychological, cultural, or an equality issue, or are more concerned about speedy outcomes at the expense of the people they employ, then there is a danger unhelpful decisions will be made.

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Three Steps for Overcoming Passive Resistance

Three Steps for Overcoming Passive Resistance | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Since people tend to avoid confrontation, especially with authority figures, passive resistance is more common in organizations than most of us realize.

Via F. Thunus
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): Since people tend to avoid confrontation, especially with authority figures, passive resistance is more common in organizations than most of us realize. And sometimes it’s actually a good thing — it causes managers to avoid impulsive actions, think through implications of change, get people on board, and deal with emotional issues. Most of the time, however, passive resistance undermines a leader’s ability to get things done quickly and effectively. In fact it often puts leaders in the untenable position of confidently charging ahead — only to later discover that the team was not fully on-board.

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F. Thunus's curator insight, December 29, 2012 3:43 PM

Basically pleading for the introduction of art of hosting methods :-)

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Mindful Mornings: 4 tips to get the day going | Mindful

Mindful Mornings: 4 tips to get the day going | Mindful | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
How we start the morning often sets the stage for how the rest of the day unfolds. Of course life throws us curve balls in the middle of the day, maybe you get a stressful email or someone rear ends you with their car or you lost that deal that you were looking forward to. Anything can happen in the present moment, but how we start our day can often affect how we greet those challenges.
donhornsby's insight:

This is an insightful article - and I especially appreciated the second point:

 

"Prime Your Mind for Good – After a brief mindful check-in, one way of inclining your mind toward resiliency and even opening up to the good of the day is to consider an intentional gratitude practice. What in your life right now do you have to be grateful for? It could be something simple, like waking up on the right side of the bed, to having a roof over your head, to having a good cup of coffee in the morning. Just practice inkling your mind to the good in life."

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God Is.'s comment, December 30, 2012 9:48 AM
Just what I needed to read today. Thank you.
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3 Traits of Truly Great Salespeople

3 Traits of Truly Great Salespeople | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
In today's wired world, salespeople need to be good with people -- kind, honest and empathetic -- as well as good at sales.
donhornsby's insight:

(from the article) Sales ability is no longer the only attribute that matters when it comes to sales personnel, writes Stacey Alcorn. In today’s interconnected world, salespeople must be empathetic and kind, she explains. “The number one trait of a really good salesperson is their ability to put themselves in the shoes of others.”

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Whatever You Do, Don’t Quit

Whatever You Do, Don’t Quit | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

I stumbled onto this poem as I was browsing through my Evernote database. The source is unknown, though many claim to have written it. Regardless, I found in inspiring and thought you would too.

donhornsby's insight:

I found this to be an encouraging poem - especially since I have been struggling with a number of issues that has left me feeling like quitting at times.  You might find it helpful as well.

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David Hain's curator insight, December 28, 2012 2:58 AM

This follows on nicely from my scoop on self-compassion - a nice message as a new year starts!

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10 Ways to Define Leadership

10 Ways to Define Leadership | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it
Being a leader isn't easy. Defining what leadership means is even more difficult.

Via juandoming
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): Answering the question of what makes a good leader is made infinitely more difficult by the fact that there is no one-size-fits all definition of leadership. To help, BusinessNewsDaily spoke with 10 business owners, leaders and entrepreneurs to help formulate a defintion of leadership. Here's what they had to say:...

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Four Ways to Avoid the “Leadership Cliff” in 2013

Four Ways to Avoid the “Leadership Cliff” in 2013 | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

With just four days left in the year, Americans are eagerly watching and waiting for governmental leaders to reach a budget agreement to avoid the “fiscal cliff” – a series of tax increases and spending reductions that will be triggered in 2013. A failure to find a solution will not just send the U.S. economy off a fiscal cliff, it will represent our political leaders falling off a “leadership cliff” as well.


Via Sparktheaction
donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): From my perspective, the most damaging leadership cliff from which leaders fall is that of breaking trust with their followers.Repairing broken trust can be a long and arduous process, and the best way to build trust with others is to not break it in the first place. But how does a leader go aboutintentionally building trust? There are four ways:

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donhornsby's curator insight, December 27, 2012 12:40 PM

(From the article):From my perspective, the most damaging leadership cliff from which leaders fall is that of breaking trust with their followers.Repairing broken trust can be a long and arduous process, and the best way to build trust with others is to not break it in the first place. But how does a leader go aboutintentionally building trust? There are four ways:

David Hain's curator insight, December 29, 2012 3:51 AM

Let's pray they take one - wish I was confident they have the breadth of vision to think about the environment and the people rather than the politics

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Networking at 30,000 Feet

Networking at 30,000 Feet | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Holiday travel can be a bear. But you never know who you might be sitting next to on the plane.


Some of those people may even be helpful to you in your job search. How do you maximize this time of year when you have the opportunity (yes, opportunity) to meet some interesting people?

donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): Be open. You may gain something from a conversation with a total stranger. In return, you can offer them something: You know a lot, and it goes way beyond what you’re learning in business school. Be willing to share with someone else. It may turn out to help you in the end. Pay it forward—especially around the holidays.

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Lessons from a reluctant manager

Lessons from a reluctant manager | Surviving Leadership Chaos | Scoop.it

Leadership tips for first-time bosses

 

Many first-time bosses have delusions of "managerial grandeur," writes Amanda Pouchot. Rather than aiming to become a superhero CEO, it's better to lower your expectations a little and focus on self-improvement and leadership development. "Learning to be a better manager comes from having time to experience and develop new skills. That seems obvious, but there are plenty of founders and first-time managers who have yet to realize it," Pouchot writes.

donhornsby's insight:

(From the article): Learning to be a better manager comes from having time to experience and develop new skills. That seems obvious, but there are plenty of founders and first-time managers who have yet to realize it. Identifying weaknesses and constantly working toward improvement does not happen overnight.

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