UntitledLeading at a Distance: Seven Tips for Leading from Afar

Can you pull together a team huddle easily? Can everyone on your team sit together in the same space regularly? What if you are trying to lead at a distance, on different shifts, or even across the globe? How can you create and maintain working relationships that work when you’re not down the hall from one another?…

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UntitledMaking a Partnership Work: It’s Not a Marriage, or Is It?

A friend of mine is currently watching one of his long-time clients partnership implode. Okay, implode is a strong word, but it’s not far from what a business partnership break-up feels like: to collapse inward violently; to demolish. In fact many who have either experienced this first-hand or who have watched from the sidelines know this is almost (if not exactly) as terrible as…

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UntitledRebuilding Trust: What’s It Worth?

For months we’ve been subjected to headlines outing unethical business practices, abuses of power, and widespread suffering of consumers. For many, times have been pretty grim. And yet, as a confirmed pragmatic optimist (I don’t just believe good things will happen, I do good things!), I have believed that situations will get better, we will have relief in the market and in the economy…

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UntitledGo for the Green: Four Reminders for Leading in Uncertain Times

In Seattle, sometimes February acts like Spring, and this year especially, after the record-breaking snow storms, I noticed the crocuses and primroses with their colorful faces, a brilliant, quick flash at the garden’s edge. There are tight buds, too, if you look closely at the grayed branches drab against the grayer sky.And, as always, the presence of evergreen. It’s always green here…

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UntitledWhat if It’s You? Tips for the Courageous Leader

One particular conundrum consultants like me face is the value of candor and honesty weighed against the desire to make my clients happy—to give them the good news and hopeful outlook for their organizations and teams and to offer both encouragement and solid advice on how to make it happen for themselves. Therein lies the rub—sometimes, the very thing I need to communicate to an organization and its leadership is…

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UntitledCh-Ch-Change

In all our day-today business experiences, there is nothing that rivals that of change. We attempt to navigate its tumultuous waters, we try to manage its fickle nature, and we sometimes even conquer its battle strategy. But most often we avoid it like the plague. Oddly enough, we rarely talk about change in itself because we’re trying so hard to describe what to do about it and why we fear it. Why do we persist in thinking things won’t change?…

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UntitledFocus on Your Strengths, Manage Your Weaknesses

One of my favorite discoveries in the past ten years was the book Soar with Your Strengths by Donald Clifton. Clifton, who was dubbed “The Grandfather of Positive Psychology,” suggests that if people are focusing on their areas of strength, not only will they be happier, but also they’ll be more productive. Other great books of similar theme followed— Marcus Buckingham’s First, Break All the Rules and subsequent Now, Discover Your Strengths (co-authored with Clifton) and recently, How Full is Your Bucket? by Tom Rath, grandson of the late Clifton…

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UntitledSubtle Subtext: The Desert, the Ocean and Three Leader Behaviors for Maximum Impact

This morning began like others—I woke at my usual 5 a.m. and decided that a good way to start the day was to go for a walk. The sun was already up here in Omak, Washington, Okanogan County, where the Omak Stampede Rodeo and “World Famous Suicide Race” happen each August. For my urban friends, I’m literally inthemiddleofnowhere up near the Canadian border and I had to drive 4 hours to get here through two mountain passes because there’s no other way unless I owned my own helicopter, which I don’t. I walked until the sidewalk ran out, which means most of my walk was along the highway next to the…

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UntitledIt’s Not About You

Recently, it seems, we’ve gotten even more self-centered and egotistical and downright surly with regards to what it means to be leading others. Once, I was interviewing a group of fifty correctional sergeants, many of whom had been working in the paramilitary world of prisons for their whole careers. My research centered around workplace learning and especially what these men and women thought it took to be leaders in an environment that was often dangerous and unpleasant. I asked them…

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UntitledLead and Get Out of the Way: Five NotRocketScience Principles for Leadership Effectiveness

I think it’s always a good idea to start on principle. It helps us develop a shared vision or common ground. Where, oh, where are we coming from when we talk about leading AND getting out of the way? The following five principles for leadership are those that I see evident in effective leaders. They can create a foundation for that tricky balance between holding people accountable and demonstrating respect. They can help you begin to…

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UntitledThe Four Keys to Influencing Performance and Morale

Often I get to work with groups of new managers and supervisors. They are excited about the challenges brought on with their new positions and many are idealistic about how they will make an impact in their organizations. I get the overwhelming sense that they are on a mission to do good work and to help the people whom they will supervise to do good work, too. They arrive at my classes and trainings like this. About half-way through, when they begin to realize what they’re up against…

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UntitledIt’s Personal
 and Business: Five Smart Strategies for Better Results

I have another confession to make. I have quite an assortment of what some might call “chick flicks.” I’m not embarrassed about this because the way I see it, I don’t read romance novels with busty women on the covers and I only like chick flicks with good dialogue and smart actors. I can’t seem to help it—I don’t care that the plot line is often predictable, there will always be some sort of absurd challenge, but in the end, it works out.One of my favorites is You’ve Got Mail with Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. He’s a millionaire chain bookstore owner and she’s an…

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UntitledThe Good News & The Bad News: You Can’t Motivate Anybody

Now that the energy of New Year’s resolutions has dimmed, many of us are feeling the winter blahs and a longing for spring. What about those in your workplace? Is work performance sluggish? What if it has nothing to do with seasonal elements? What helps us get motivated and how can we motivate others?Here’s the good news and the bad news: you can’t motivate anybody. Motivation is intrinsic—it generates from within and is primarily based on…

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