RESOURCES

Overcoming the Blame Game

Leadership

One of the leadership lessons learned in your first management assignment is the responsibility for the actions of others.  While team activities may be a big part of growing up, most academic and extra-curricular activities focus on your individual performance. Grades given by teachers are intended to reflect individual learning and performance.   The team may win or lose but the players generally know their personal statistics and remember well the coach’s feedback about their specific actions. So, the first time you receive negative feedback because someone else performed poorly can come as quite a shock.   

 

Some emerging leaders embrace…

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Don’t Let the Past Limit Today’s Options

Leadership

Failed military battles produce some of our best leadership lessons. In hindsight it becomes clear whether it was simply a lack of resources, a flawed strategy, a superior enemy or a series of unforced leadership errors.  Errors like a lack of preparation or poor decision making and communication can often be traced back to pride, overconfidence and fear.  Usually these errors are not the result of a single mistake in thinking or action, but a series of cascading miscalculations and leadership behaviors.

 

In David McCullough’s book, Pioneers,about the settling of the Ohio Valley after the American Revolutionary War, he chronicles a…

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Hoping For the Worst

Strategy

Most effective decision-making approaches seek to identify risks and to create some mitigation strategies. But what if you could design a solution so you actually do better under worsening conditions.  This is part of the premise behind the concept of “Antifragility” introduced by Nassem Taleb who also gave us “The Black Swan” concept. (A difficult to predict event that has catastrophic consequences). 

 

When we develop complicated systems with lots of interdependent parts we create greater probabilities that failure will occur. So, we create additional systems and processes to raise the level of resilience and robustness. Taleb draws a distinction between resilience and…

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Growing Towards Who You Want to Be

Organizational Transformation

“Grow or die” seems to be the mantra for most organizations.  The vast majority of companies use some form of comparative metrics in order to see if they are making progress compared to their past efforts. Top line growth (revenue) has often been enough to provide the next round of financing, a larger bonus, or consideration for a better position.  Growth implies positive movement and momentum towards achieving potential. The good news is that companies can choose a number of paths to achieve growth. 

 

In Growth IQ, Tiffani Bova, identifies ten different approaches available to organizations looking to grow.   Bova cites…

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Help, I Need Somebody

Leadership

What if I am wrong? What if the one thing that I am promoting, advocating, and even “betting the ranch” on might actually turn out to be completely wrong.   Like a recurring nightmare where the foundational understanding and assumption doesn’t hold up and the whole plan or endeavor is doomed to failure.   There is no shortage of historic blunders where leaders were blinded to this possibility and led their followers wholeheartedly into disaster.

 

And yet, leaders who start off meetings or even worse pre-launch motivational speeches with, “last night it occurred to me that our whole approach is quite possibly built…

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