You’re Not Alone: Everyone Fakes It Sometimes.

Congratulations!  You got that promotion!! That job you had your eyes on for so long is finally yours.  What a rush!  Your partner/spouse is thrilled!  Your parents are thrilled!  Even the dog seems happier to see you when you come home.  Life. just. couldn’t. get. any. better. So why do you feel so much like a fraud? And why are you worried people will find out you don’t quite know what you’re doing? Answer #1:…

Frankly, Why Do You Even Think You’re Right?

We recently replaced a 13-year-old dryer: it took 2 1/2 hours to dry a regular load of clothes.  The only problem was, the newly acquired dryer took just as long.  The manufacturer sent out a technician to investigate, and he solved the matter in minutes.  After a few questions, he confirmed there was heat in the dryer, and then went outside to check the venting.  “Your dryer’s fine.  It’s your vent that’s…

What I Learned from Hurricane Matthew & 9/11

In 2001, I was in Manhattan during 9/11. Fifteen years later in 2016, I was living in Savannah (but did not stay) during Hurricane Matthew. Both were very different events, with entirely different causes, and entirely different implications and outcomes. But combined, they’ve left me with a few reflections on people, leaders, and just life in general: People In times of crisis, people come together for help, support, encouragement, and…

Does Your Leadership Influence Travel at the Speed of Light?

The James Webb Space Telescope In October 2018, the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) will be launched on an Ariane 5 rocket from French Guiana.  According to NASA, “JWST will be the premier observatory of the next decade, serving thousands of astronomers worldwide. It will study every phase in the history of our Universe, ranging from the first luminous glows after the Big Bang, to the formation of solar systems capable…

Is “Grit” the New Buzzword?

These days it’s difficult to avoid hearing reference to it; “grit” seems to be the new leadership, management, student, child “must have” ability, trait, skill, etc.  It’s easy to nod our head, and agree it’s important, just as we did for “emotional intelligence”.  But what does “grit” actually mean?  In a recent article,  Bravetta Hassell, associate editor at Chief Learning Officer, provides an interesting perspective and research: http://www.clomedia.com/2016/05/31/the-value-of-grit-has-been-overly-hyped/

Take 15 Minutes to Save Your Job

Take 15 minutes, and save your job, your department, and possibly, your company. How? You won’t need your smartphone, laptop, phablet, email, Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, Periscope, text messaging, or IBM’s Watson for this. Just your head, a pen, a piece of paper, and 15 minutes. Now, think of the key roles in your team, department, and/or company. Got them? Good. Write them down in a column on the left hand…

Give Them the Gift of Experiences

This past Christmas, my wife and I decided not to give gifts to each other. For previous Christmases, we each had said “no more gifts”, but one of us would ultimately violate the mandate and end up buying the other something. Well this year we each said, “No more gifts”, and we actually kept to it. Instead, we “gave” ourselves several dinners out, just the two of us, during the…

What’s Your Leadership Presence Smell Like?

On a recent weekend afternoon, I was out for a jog on a stretch of 2-lane road.  With no shoulder or sidewalk to use, I was running against what little traffic there was.  From about 30 yards and traveling at about 45 mph, a car approached.  And it slowed as it began to brake. The car was still a ways away when suddenly and out of nowhere, I was engulfed in…

3 Ways Leaders Can Avoid the VUCA Vortex

Last month we spoke of the VUCA vortex: the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity that are challenging today’s leaders. We also noted several trends in leaders lives, namely: Significantly increased spans of control and responsibility; increased workloads and expectations; and an ever-commuting lifestyle based on mobile technology. Here are 3 things leaders can do to limit the fury of the VUCA vortex. 1) Focus more on the Important, and less…

Why are we leading in the “VUCA” vortex?

In 2007 and 2008, when the bottom fell out of the economy as well as many people’s jobs and careers, it set in motion a slew of factors that have led to a set of conditions that pundits have recently termed “VUCA” (an acronym for volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity).  If you haven’t heard about it, no worries; you’ll likely see more references to it in the future.  Strictly speaking,…
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