I’ve had quite enough of being told to “Go down to their level.” Stop this nonsense. The only reason you go down to “their” level is to raise them up to yours. And the only reason you raise them up to your level is to raise them higher than yourself. One of my favourite quotes
Category Archives: Leadership
Are you worth your salt? Well, ARE you? Do you receive your salary, your pay, your commission, your fee, with great satisfaction, knowing that you have delivered much more than the pittance you received? I hope you do. As one wise man once said “There are two tragedies in life. The first is not getting
Google yielded 1.2 million results when I typed “talent shortage” just before writing this post. The IT sector is currently complaining about a “shortage of tech talent” which, even if available, is seen to be “expensive.” Really? What are all our ICT graduates doing, then? When I actually started reading a few posts and articles
Maturity – A Person of Substance Do you aspire to maturity? Would that mean being matronly? Or would it mean being middle-aged, with hints of grey appearing already? Given a choice, would you want to be mature? Or would you want to keep playing the Peter Pan card of eternal youth? Does being mature mean
Inanities How often have you read a report about once-great entities now gone to the dogs? Have you noticed how often those entities are described as being “Victims of their own success”? What does that mean? I don’t know, do you? How do companies become “Victims of their own success”? After all, if your success
“Give me liberty, or give me death!” ~ Patrick Henry Clarity is greatly liberating, in the sense that decisiveness is enhanced by it. Since liberty is not the right to do as we like, but the freedom to do as we ought, then being clear how our convictions inform our actions opens up many degrees
Very Busy “But I’m very busy,” you exclaim. “With what?” you might be asked in return. Busywork is no doubt the bane of productivity at the workplace. Then again, what IS “busywork” anyway? Dictionary.com says “…work assigned for the sake of looking or keeping busy…” and Merriam-Webster says “…work that usually appears productive or of
What Nokia’s boss is reported to have said during the press conference announcing Nokia’s takeover by Microsoft is making its way around. Reading it, and the comments following, confirms again that phrases like “Nothing succeeds like success” need to be applied judiciously. We need to know the context, the background story and, in this case,
Many years ago, we used to sing a silly campfire song which went something like: Says a thousand-legged worm As he gives a little squirm Have you seen a little leg of mine? If it can’t be found I shall have to hop around On my nine hundred and ninety-nine! Hop around, hop around Have
I watched a recording of a webinar that occurred three years ago. The main speaker was Bernard Marr, someone whose posts I read a lot on LinkedIn. The recording is about one-and-a-half hours long. Yes, I watched it all. Twice. My personal summary of it is that we need much more strategic clarity. I would
I am fed up with people selling fantasies to everyone on their contact list. Exasperated by declarations of “It Will Be Great!” with no definite, organic steps in the right direction. Signs like “You Should Be Here!” make me shake my head at the foolishness of exploiting others. I’ve never read that classic called “The
Do you know of leaders who appear to be extremely busy, look worried all the time, are swift in submitting reports and excel at paperwork, but who seem to be accomplishing very little in terms of business results? You do? They are class examples of lazy leadership. Look further and you’ll probably find that their
Really? Sounds like a leadership cop-out to me! Doctors make judgments about people all the time, it’s part of their job. If your kidneys aren’t functioning because you have a type of diabetes, then your kidneys aren’t functioning. Changing your lifestyle, habits and so forth may help to alleviate external symptoms, but your health is
Ah. Presenting the next scapegoat for the death and non-burial of the Science and Art of Leadership. The Annual Performance Review. Killed by isolation from a non-existent continuous review process. Killed by avoidance of accountability, as Patrick Lencioni might have put it. Killed by people ill-placed in positions of leadership. Killed by the Mummy of
Change. The only constant. We need to change in order to survive. What a chimera! As if we don’t know how to change, what to change and when to change. We even know why change and what we want to change into! Or so we think. Change implies flexibility. Adaptability. Tolerance. Patience. Determination. Decisiveness. Deference.
The expected answer to the question above would be “No objections.” Is that good? Is that the norm? I once heard Patrick Lencioni say that consensus is a four-letter word. I agree. Consensus is a convenient way of saying that we don’t like what you, the Boss, is saying, but we can live with it.
Kate Thome wrote a three-part series on Executive Presence on LinkedIn recently. She discussed three kinds of observable behaviours which would indicate whether or not a person has that X-factor commonly known as Executive Presence. I call them tell-tale signs. Uptalk. This is when every statement you make sounds like a question from someone with a
What comes to your mind when you think of soft skills? Scoffed skills? If so, you need to change your mindset or continue hemorrhaging to death at whatever your current hemorrhage rate is. Soft skills are not some airy-fairy “I love you, Sister” kind of thing. They are actually much harder to develop than training
A comrade of mine recalled an incident when he was training cadets. It happened to be an offensive operations exercise, and the cadets had fared very badly. During the main debrief, which was of course after all the After-Action-Reviews (AARs), “Hotwashes”, or what I personally have come to disdain as “Hogwashes” and so forth. When the
Have you ever been admonished about the way you dress? Or perhaps about the way you don’t dress? Have you ever asked why it is so important? Well, it actually is. I talked about some of that in a previous post. Now, I’d like you to reflect on the oft-quoted “Dress for success” mantra. When was
Are you cockily confident? Brazenly bold? Confidence comes from getting better at what you do, and having a right perception of yourself. Want to get more confident?
Comments I made on the post by Suzanne Snowden on “Seven skills needed for tomorrow’s CEO.” What do you think? Skills? Competencies? Core values?
Want Independence? Tell you what – Interdependence is actually better!
Are systems and automation wonders going to solve all your business issues? Hardly. YOU are! For that, you need to automate consciously so that your business can operate at the unconscious competence level. So you can focus on relationships.
Would any of your staff lay their lives down willingly for your sake? How about you, would you lay yours down for them?
It’s not what you know, or what you think you know. It’s whether you know the whys and how to apply what you know.
There are many advantages you stand to gain when you hire veterans. Treat them well and you will gain even more!
We love referring to classics, don’t we? Many of the quotes that we like to use for self-affirmation or when we’re just trying to appear as if we do have some degree of sophistication come from some classic or other. Someone has of course quipped that a classic is “A book everyone knows about but
You might inadvertently give someone influenza or catch influenza if you mispronounce influencer. I suppose you could say that both are infectious in nature. We have all heard the saying “Attitude is infectious. Is yours worth catching?” and we all know what that refers to. We also commonly use the term COI, meaning “Centre of
Most people I know have no problems with producing results, fulfilling KPIs, chalking up the numbers, and so on. Production is no big deal. You do what you’re supposed to do, maybe make some small, incremental improvements, do your due diligence, and….. voila! … the day is done. Even if some innovative new thing comes
We can all expect similar responses, or perhaps reactions, if we bring up the topic of dressing well at work. Popular culture seems to have reacted against the perceived hypocrisy of being well-dressed and well-heeled outwardly, but being just the opposite inwardly. I suppose that’s where the term “stuffed shirts” comes from. The well-dressed of
Slow death by Political Correctness (PC) is to me a painful death to die. I always wonder why we can’t get to the point, why we can’t call a spade a spade. I don’t object to using euphemisms, if the context, intent and situation call for their use. So, what’s the difference? Political Correctness seeks
Intrapreneur is actually the same as entrepreneur except it operates within the framework of a larger organization that the Intrapreneur does not own. I think that most of us are born with an entrepreneurial mindset already embedded within us. Tragically, this is eroded by the time we get to school and start working, and is replaced
You come into the job eagerly, with high expectations, perhaps a degree or two behind you, or perhaps with some years of experience under your belt. Your interviews had gone very well, and you look forward to making a big difference together with your new co-workers and managers. Yes, this is your dream job! Six months
We have all heard versions of “Clone yourself”, “Make copies of yourself” and the like. At the same time, we have been told to make our businesses “scalable” and therefore more profitable for ourselves. Making many copies of “I, Leader” seems to make much sense, for if the Mark I, Mark II and Mark ad
Yes, I’ve been referring to the organismic company for a while now. And yes, I’ve been coming across posts and articles talking about how to make “Industrial Age” companies more organic, how to have better Job Descriptions, how to have more flexible Organization Charts and how to better tap on the vast Knowledge Bank that
At this writing, the question of whether the Scots go their own bonny way has yet to be decided. Ironically, as I took in more news on the subject, the song “When a child is born”, popularized by Johnny Mathis, sprang to my mind. What happens when you think of a child being born? Do
On 17 Sep 2014, Singapore’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Tharman Shanmugaratnam spoke about the need to adopt “meritocracy through life” at the official opening of the Lifelong Learning Institute, which aims to raise competencies in citizens, among other things. I was flicking through the news when this caught my eye. It caused me
Have you ever been encouraged to “fire your Boss”? Have you thought about “firing your Boss” yourself? I wrote a little bit about this in “Wish You Could Fire Your Boss? Why? So You Can Take Over?” a while back, and I’d like to expand on this a little more. Think of all the reasons
Pacers. More people use them than perhaps we think. And I’m not only referring to pacers of the cardiac sort, but anyone, thing, or system that nudges us along, maintains a viable tempo and generally keeps us on track. Pacers are regulators. They help us get to a certain optimal norm, at least for a
But of course! Please stand in front of me. Now, bend forwards at the waist until your body forms a right angle with the trunk of your body horizontal and your derriere facing me. Ready? Prepare for the first kick. Say “Thank you!” Prepare for second kick. Say “Thank you!” Repeat process until inertia and
If Abraham Lincoln had been a Singaporean, he might have said something like “……that the systems of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from this earth…” In a previous post, “A Fort Means A Lot. A Last Stand It Is Not”, I said that forts are meant for area domination, not
Depreciation. The idea that assets continue to have intrinsic value which decreases over time. Is there infrastructure, IT or otherwise, that you are dying to get rid of but aren’t doing so because they are in the closet and “have not been fully written off”? Why is that so? Is it because at the back
John Hope Bryant wrote a post on LinkedIn, “Ride or Die”. It talks about a manifestation of the Pareto Principle where 20% of your workforce does 80% of the heavy-lift work. That looks very alarming to me, don’t know how you feel. Yes, having ADHD workers is not a very good thing. ADHD – Actively
And by that I mean genuine leaders. Leaders whose basic interest is in improving the lot for themselves and for others around them. Leaders who believe that it is one of their fundamental duties to grow so that they in turn can grow others along with them. Leaders who aspire to make others “Greater Than
I came across a post asking “How does the successful CMO prepare for the Board meeting?” I was rather intrigued and asked the writer three questions. 1. At Senior Leadership level, is there such a thing as a “cost centre?” 2. Does the Leadership Team answer the Board’s questions about marketing ROI as a
It’s hard to write when your head is stuffed, so this will be a short post. Probably. I find that more and more people are asking me for referrals, regardless of how well or how little I know them and their businesses. In a way, that is a good sign. It means that the spirit
Outstanding! Are you tired of trying to be different, trying to “stand out from the crowd” and trying to be “outstanding”? I have good news for you! Stop that nonsense! Your body is comprised of between sixty to seventy trillion cells. That alone makes you unique! So, why do you try so hard to “stand
Say “Love” in this day and age and what comes to the hearer’s mind is spelt “S-E-X”. Come on, now, surely we have better minds than that. Still, it does seem to be so, from all I have been observing. “Sex” is a subset of what we understand as “Love”. “Love” encompasses quite a few
You might think you’re getting paid too little for what you do, and what you contribute. On the other hand, if you’re really honest with yourself, you might actually admit to the fact that you’re really being paid far too much! How do you think you ought to be paid? By virtue of good pedigree,