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Dan Allender on Leadership Vulnerability

“. . . to the degree you face and name and deal with your failures as a leader, to that same extent you will create an environment conducive to growing and retaining productive and committed colleagues.”

“. . . to the degree you attempt to hide or dissemble your weaknesses, the more you will need to control those you lead, the more insecure you will become, and the more rigidity you will impose — prompting the ultimate departure of your best people.”

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Leadership Focus, Karin & the Multitasking Myth

I disagree with Karin. I have for five years. And I’m hoping to win her over. Let me explain why I think this is important for my leadership effectiveness and hers.

As our business expanded five years ago, my wife and I realized that day-to-day operations were growing beyond our abilities. We are both great “starters.” Vision, energy, creating-something-out-of-nothing, putting it all on the line to make something happen: in hindsight, that’s what we did.

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Leadership Abdication

Who’s in charge?  This is a huge leadership question.   While it would seem to have a simple answer – the leader is – too often simple isn’t easy.

Leaders are too often guilty of trying to be consensus-builders instead of leaders. Or politicians instead of leaders. Or hand-wringers instead of leaders. Or one of my greatest fears, leadership abdication: a leader acting as a constituency-pleaser instead of a leader.

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The Leadership Six: 6 numbers that need to be front-of-mind for every good leader

Here are the most important Leadership Numbers we need to remember: 1-3-5 and 2-4-6.  Depending on the level of your leadership investment, there are two other numbers that may be important to you: 5 and 10.  More about those leadership numbers in a minute.  But first, the first three leadership numbers:

1-3-5

The first three numbers represent weeks.  A good leader is purposeful about the now and the very near future.

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A Key Leadership Question: Are We Having Fun?

Bill Hybels, in his excellent book, Axiom: Powerful Leadership Proverbs, reminds me again: people should enjoy their jobs as much as they are good at their jobs.  When I do a reality check with my management team and ask them how they are doing, I look should be looking for two things:

  • Is the mission being accomplished?
  • Are they enjoying their job?

If the mission is being accomplished but they are not enjoying their job,

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Leadership: Measure Twice, Cut Once

Before our daughter was born, I spent several years making furniture as a hobby. I would typically build one project a year: an armoire, a headboard, a cabinet, etc. I learned a lot about woodworking doing those projects, and also at least one vital lesson about leadership.

The way I got into woodworking was through a local community college.  A friend of mine told me about a night class he took each fall that really only consisted of having access to a local high school’s very nice woodworking shop,

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Leadership Reciprocity

Leadership Reciprocity may be a mouthful of a phrase. But it is a profoundly elegant principle.

First of all, let’s look at the Principle of Reciprocity itself.  This principle means that when you do something in someone else’s best interest, they feel a sense of obligation to reciprocate. Robert Cialdini writes about this in his book, Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion.  In this best-selling book, Cialdini cites reciprocity as one of six foundational  principles of influence. 

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"Thought Leadership" is oftentimes not

“Thought Leadership” is used far too often these days. Sorry for the negativity of the following blog, but I’ve got to get it off my chest.

For business consultants and professional speakers, “I’m a thought leader” is similar to saying “I’m proud of my humility.”  You and I don’t get to call ourselves thought leaders.  That is a label that can only be attached to us by others.

According to Wikipedia (perhaps the internet’s most-cited thought-leader!),

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