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The Second Mile
Attitudes and Actions that Bring Out the Best in You and Others
Curated by John Michel
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Why You Need Mental Toughness

Why You Need Mental Toughness | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
At the age of sixteen, I flunked my first driver’s test. Embarrassed and afraid to retake the test, my self-confidence plummeted.
John Michel's insight:

Mental toughness is finding a way to say NO to your self-limiting beliefsMental toughness is the ability to change things by your own power; it’s the opposite of helplessness. When you choose to let a negative thought have control, you’ve decided that nothing you do affects what happens to you.

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Being a manager doesn't make you a leader - The Next Web

Being a manager doesn't make you a leader - The Next Web | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Being a manager doesn't make you a leader
The Next Web
Poor managers are always the first to take credit for positive praise; effective leaders understand the importance of crediting their team for the big wins.
John Michel's insight:

By allowing people to participate in the decision-making process, you’ll transform what could have been an order into something more easily swallowed. This type of questioning will also inspire creativity, motivation, and autonomy in your staff.

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What are the Secrets to a Happy Life?

What are the Secrets to a Happy Life? | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
In following 268 men for their entire lives, the Harvard Grant Study has discovered why some of them turned out happier than others.
John Michel's insight:

A very, very thought provoking rundown of an unparalleled research effort...enjoy! 

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Raising a Compassionate Child In the Age of Entitlement

Raising a Compassionate Child In the Age of Entitlement | The Second Mile | Scoop.it

How do you make sure that your child stays humble, responsible, and empathetic?

 

The secrets to raising a compassionate, responsible child are surprisingly simple, according to researchers.

 

Top 5 Ways To Raise A Compassionate Kid:

1. Assign your kids chores. When your kids are young, start by assigning chores early on, so they understand the concept of each family member taking on a specific job for the wellbeing of the entire family. Studies show that this is one of the best ways to encourage compassion and prosocial behavior. Older kids can babysit younger siblings or other kids in the neighborhood. Older boys can be particularly good babysitters and develop a caring relationship with younger boys.


Via Edwin Rutsch
John Michel's insight:

The secrets to raising a compassionate, responsible child are surprisingly simple, according to researchers.

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How to Fulfill Leadership's First Responsibility

How to Fulfill Leadership's First Responsibility | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Fear hopes monsters go away. Courage grabs them by the throat. “The first responsibility of a leader is to define reality.” Max De Pree The movie, Apollo 13, made the phrase, “Houston, we have a pr...
John Michel's insight:

Defining reality is boldly describing what you see. It’s easier to sprinkle fairy dust on reality than you think. You don’t want to point out problems, for example, because they reflect poorly on your leadership. So, you pretend they’re challenges and opportunities. Maybe, if you close your eyes long enough, they’ll go away.

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Don't Make Decisions, Orchestrate Them

Don't Make Decisions, Orchestrate Them | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Decision-making is not a solo activity.
John Michel's insight:

Every manager needs to make sure that decisions are made and implemented, whether it's for an entire company or a small team. And while it may seem easier to just make the decisions yourself, in many cases this won't lead to the best outcome — nor will it increase your team's capability to make future decisions. The alternative, however, is not to shy away from decisions, but rather to create an orchestrated process by which the right people are engaged, including yourself.

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Successful Leadership Requires 6 Critical Resources

Successful Leadership Requires 6 Critical Resources | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Leadership is a chess match. Every decision you make influences your next five decisions. Unfortunately, many leaders don’t realize the implications of each of their decisions.

Via The e.MILE Community
John Michel's insight:

Successful leadership is a by-product of those resources that you are able to access throughout the course of your career.   Resources that are not given to you, but rather earned as a result of hard work, sacrifices, respect from your peers and career coaches, and the failures that taught you lessons along the way.

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Why I Love When Customers Complain

Why I Love When Customers Complain | The Second Mile | Scoop.it

Had I rushed my customer, he might not have been able to share with me the important everyday happenings in our industry that he sees from the opposite side of the street. His insider information clues me in to new products available in our market, hard-to-spot changes he sees happening in the industry, and of course his experience in dealing not just with my company but with my competitors.  Thus, my choice to listen was a judicious one.  It gave me competitor intel, highlighted needs I could create products to fill in a changing market.


Via Bonnie Hohhof
John Michel's insight:

Great insights on the power of listening to dissatisfied customers.

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5 Leadership Lessons: Listen, Learn, Lead

5 Leadership Lessons: Listen, Learn, Lead | The Second Mile | Scoop.it

For a leader – or anyone else who wants to succeed at hiring and retaining the very best talent – listening is a crucial skill. Because when you tune the wrong people and information out, you’re depriving yourself of priceless tools that will enable you to take your career, and life, to new levels of workplace fulfillment, reward and fun.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen
John Michel's insight:

To reach our full potential, we must master the art of listening. Really listening. Which means awareness. Which means thinking about what we hear. Which means applying it, if possible, to the leadership challenges at hand.

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Ivon Prefontaine's curator insight, August 5, 2013 6:10 PM

Listening is an important aspect of mindful, servant-leadership.

AlGonzalezinfo's curator insight, August 5, 2013 8:17 PM

Simple and yet, so difficult to do.

donhornsby's curator insight, August 6, 2013 9:53 AM

(From the article): Learning to listen is a blast. It makes us fuller, smarter, more empathetic, more successful people and leaders. Lets all take our earplugs out and tune in to the wondrous wealth of inspiration that surrounds us. Your future and current employees will thank you.

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NoExcusesHR: The Power Position

NoExcusesHR: The Power Position | The Second Mile | Scoop.it

Via Steve Browne
John Michel's insight:

It's funny how we try to minimize the role of power in the workplace. Sometimes we use terms like "associates" or "team members" instead of employees. We try flattening our organizations, or downplaying job titles to help put people at ease. 

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Simon Sinek: How Extraordinary Leaders Evolve

Simon Sinek: How Extraordinary Leaders Evolve | The Second Mile | Scoop.it

Leadership writer and top TED speaker Simon Sinek explains how great leaders create a circle of safety for their teams.


Via Kenneth Mikkelsen
John Michel's insight:

Real leaders are the very few willing to sacrifice themselves for their people. When they do, we will do anything to see that our leader's visions are advanced.

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Patricia D. Sadar - Career and Leadership Acceleration Coach's curator insight, August 2, 2013 8:54 AM

Great video!

Tom Hood's curator insight, August 2, 2013 9:58 AM

Sinek does it again - from the "golden circle" of "why" to the "circle of safety" for making an extraordinary organziation that can execute your why.

 

The circle of safety is about engagement, empowerment, and protection of your team. Do you just protect the senior team in your organziation or do all of your people feel safe and able to make decisions?

 

Another inspirational talk from Simon Sinek. Worth a reaad and watch.

Patricia D. Sadar - Career and Leadership Acceleration Coach's comment, August 3, 2013 10:17 PM
Thank you Tom!!!
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Leadership Biz Cafe Podcast #9 - Shirzad Chamine On Improving Team Performance

Leadership Biz Cafe Podcast #9 - Shirzad Chamine On Improving Team Performance | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Why do most efforts to improve team or individual performance fall apart within a short period of time? Why is it that our feelings of accomplishment diminish so quickly after we achieve a goal or target?
John Michel's insight:

A very worthwhile 23 minutes...enjoy. 

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4 Ways to Quiet the Negative Voice Inside You

4 Ways to Quiet the Negative Voice Inside You | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Practical Tips for Productive Living
John Michel's insight:

Think positive.  Life is good.  Too many people miss the silver lining because they’re expecting pure gold.  Positive thinking isn’t about expecting the best to always happen, but accepting that whatever happens is the best for the moment.  So keep smiling and keep staying true to your heart.  Someday, the negative voice inside you will have nothing left to say.


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A Responsibility to Give Back - New York Times

A Responsibility to Give Back - New York Times | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
A Responsibility to Give Back
New York Times
MY grandfather was a Methodist minister. When I was growing up in Washington, his sermons at the Park Road Community Church, which he helped to found, had a powerful impact on me.
John Michel's insight:

A greapierce on the value of accepting responsibility for giving back...no matter our stage of life.

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What Role Does Faith, Commitment and a Positive Attitude Play in YOUR Success?

What Role Does Faith, Commitment and a Positive Attitude Play in YOUR Success? | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
It is my position that leadership talents are learned and with the possible exception of intelligence, we acquire the skills and qualities needed to be a succes ...
John Michel's insight:

We humans are complex beings seeking balance, rewards, career advancement, loving relationships with family and friends, to earn the trust of our peers and leave a legacy.  That legacy can either be a positive one or not.

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Yes, The Most Dangerous Word In The World

Yes, The Most Dangerous Word In The World | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
The only four letter word I never heard in my twenty-four year career in the FBI was “quit.” No matter how tough the training got, or hard a case was to solve, or the size of the obstacle in front of me, I never allowed this word to weasel it’s way...
John Michel's insight:

When we reinforce a way of thinking, either new connections are formed or old ones are strengthened. So, when you maintain a strong mind that thinks in positive and constructive ways, these connections become more durable and easier to activate.

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Remorseful Burglars Return Stolen Computers to Sexual Assault Center

Remorseful Burglars Return Stolen Computers to Sexual Assault Center | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Hours after pulling off a daring computer heist, burglars returned their stolen loot with an apology note to a center that helps victims of sexual assault.
John Michel's insight:

Hours after pulling off a daring heist, burglars returned their stolen loot — six desktop computers and a brand new laptop — to a center that helps victims of sexual assault. They also left an apology note.

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Appreciative inquiry: mobilising change with hope, optimism and ...

Appreciative inquiry: mobilising change with hope, optimism and ... | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Last week I wrote about Positive Organisational Scholarship and introduced a new approach to driving powerful change and creating a positive culture, called Appreciative Inquiry. Click here to read my post on Positive ...

Via F. Thunus
John Michel's insight:

We are often exposed to a deficiency model in organisations by focusing on questions such as “What are the problems or challenges we are currently facing?” or “What needs to be fixed?“ This mindset focuses our attention on what is wrong, or what needs to be changed and inevitably attempts to turn weaknesses into strengths – a processes that can actually cause issues or problems to become worse or over emphasised!

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Why Humility is Essential for Every New Startup Hire • ex post facto

Why Humility is Essential for Every New Startup Hire • ex post facto | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
When interviewing product managers at Google, we ranked candidates on four metrics: technical ability, communication skills, intellect and Googliness.
John Michel's insight:

Disruptive companies reinvent. They don’t copy and execute someone else’s playbook. To be disruptive, a startup’s team must cast aside preconceived notions and assumptions about doing things the “right way” and start inventing new ways.

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Seth's Blog: "Oh, that's just a hack someone put together..."

Seth's Blog: "Oh, that's just a hack someone put together..." | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Just about all the big decisions, innovations and perfect solutions around you didn't start that way.

Via Amy Melendez
John Michel's insight:

Inventing isn't the hard part. The ideas that change the world are changing the world because someone cared enough to stick it out, to cajole and lead and evolve. But even though the inventing isn't the hard part, it scares us away.

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Amy Melendez's curator insight, August 7, 2013 10:53 AM

From the article: They weren't the result of a ten-person committee, carefully considering all options, testing the reasonable ones and putting in place a top-down implementation that went flawlessly.

 

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Five Leadership Lessons from the Circus — Break The Frame

Five Leadership Lessons from the Circus — Break The Frame | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
Leadership lessons are everywhere! Here are five lessons can leaders learn from a well-run circus and their many talented performers. (Can't run away & join the circus? Well, there are things you can still learn from it.
John Michel's insight:

Interesting insights on leadership. 

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Meaning Is Healthier Than Happiness

Meaning Is Healthier Than Happiness | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
People who are happy but have little-to-no sense of meaning in their lives have the same gene expression patterns as people who are enduring chronic adversity.

Via Bobby Dillard
John Michel's insight:

It’s important to understand that for many people, a sense of meaning and happiness in life overlap; many people score jointly high (or jointly low) on the happiness and meaning measures in the study. But for many others, there is a dissonance — they feel that they are low on happiness and high on meaning or that their lives are very high in happiness, but low in meaning.

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B-School Lessons: The Power of Humility - Businessweek

B-School Lessons: The Power of Humility - Businessweek | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
B-School Lessons: The Power of Humility
Businessweek
Why is it we often have to lose someone in order to appreciate that person's contribution to society? A family friend recently passed away.
John Michel's insight:

In life, we are each just one member of the team. In the sport of crew, every person on the shell must work equally hard in order to win as a team. Coxswains motivate the team, but each person in that shell must work in sync in order for the team to do well. My friend taught me that during our career, we move between coxswain and rower. The most successful rowing teams are filled with people who recognize the value of each person.

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Being Leader-ish: When You’re Not Quite a Leader

Being Leader-ish: When You’re Not Quite a Leader | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
  ish. This is the word we use when something is stuck between being and not being. Between is and is not. For example, we might say, ...
John Michel's insight:

True character-based leadership emerges through discomfort. Ours, and others. It requires focusing our attention on how we can make others shine. Making mindful judgment calls. Getting things done through others, and winning their hearts and minds in the process. Handling people as unique individuals. Looking beyond our positions to the behaviors and choices that are best for our employees, for the team, for the organization, and its customer.

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Unleashing Your Inner Thought Leader

Unleashing Your Inner Thought Leader | The Second Mile | Scoop.it
I talk with working people, students and job-seekers all day long, so I hear a mind-boggling number of stories. None of them are boring.Sometimes people start to tell boring stories, by mistake. They
John Michel's insight:

Everyone has a story. Everyone has wisdom to share. Our workmates have incredible stories and learning that cannot be conveyed adequately through the channels that our particle-focused, wave-blind workplaces offer. We need to connect at work on a different level, with our colleagues, our customers, our vendors and our partners, and what better way to get there than to help people find their voices?


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