How to develop boldness as a Leader

All great leaders, both in the current arena and throughout history, have in common a willingness to take risks and be bold. Articles and studies reinforce the importance of bold leadership, but how exactly you become bold as a leader? Let’s take a look.

1. Know the right way to take risks

Taking risks is often thought to be as the defining quality of a bold leader, but you should keep in mind all the associated factors with each risk, and only then should you proceed with any decision, regardless of whether you decided to go on or not.

Thorough analysis before taking a step forward is crucial, and will help you formulate mitigation strategies in case your decision backfires. Everyone makes mistakes, and thus having a sound preventive strategy around is always a good idea.

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3 ways to cultivate humility for better leadership

Think about all the great leaders you respect, and why you admire them.

Most of the time, the reason will be the accomplishments they have achieved.

But if fame equates to success these days, where does humility come in?

Is there any place for humility in leadership?

Business schools all over the world emphasize the importance of humility in leadership, but there really doesn’t seem much point, right?

Wrong! Let’s take a deeper look.

Click here to read  – 3 ways to cultivate humility for better leadership

leadership, Shift

4 tips for being more flexible and adaptable

To stay competitive, businesses today must change and conform to the latest standards on a nearly real-time basis.

This calls for increased focus on developing and establishing the traits of flexibility and adaptability into all levels of the workforce hierarchy. As an emerging leader, the responsibility of cultivating these two traits often falls on your shoulders.

Adaptability and flexibility: A quick refresher

At this point in your career, being offered insight into what adaptability entails might seem superfluous. However, even experienced leaders can overlook important nuances that come with adaptability and need a refresher from time to time.

In the business sense of the word, adaptability entails being open to new ideas and concepts, being able to work on an independent basis or with a team as the situation demands, and juggling multiple projects without getting flummoxed when conditions abruptly change. The ability or degree of willingness to which one adapts in such situations essentially determines one’s level of flexibility — and possibly the heights they will achieve in the future.

With a basic refresher under your belt, let’s move on to building your workforce. Here we’ll take a look at four skills to nurture as you embark on developing your team’s ability to adapt:

1. Think creatively

Your team should be encouraged to explore different avenues for fostering creativity and accomplishing work goals with a new mindset. Those who tend to stick to the same tried-and-true methods are likely to have decreased flexibility and will resist change. Be prepared to give your team a little extra effort.

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Challenge orthodoxy if you want innovation and success

Nearly every innovation the world has seen is the result of curiosity. But what if Mozart hadn’t been curious about composition, Leonardo da Vinci had ignored the human form, and Louis Pasteur never explored medicine? The world would be bereft of music, art, and even health as we know it.

Curiosity serves as a trigger for innovation and invention.

An annoyance — or a driver of innovation?

As with inventions, curiosity has been behind a large number of success stories in the business world, too. Often hailed as the father of modern management, famed management consultant Peter Drucker put it like this: “My greatest strength as a consultant is to be ignorant and ask a few questions.”

Yet, in a professional setting, it is not uncommon to hear the phrase, “That’s just the way things are done around here,” when someone expresses curiosity. Some consider curiosity an annoying trait and label those who tend to question as being too intrusive, obstinate, and even naysayers. The truth is, the way the business field is evolving, innovation is key, and without curiosity, there is no innovation.

Curiosity can get you in trouble, but so what?

Click here to read on – Challenge orthodoxy if you want innovation and success

leadership, Shift

Collaboration, in its myriad forms, is taking shape around us day in and day out. With global game-upending innovations, the future of business is forever on a path that cannot do without an intelligent and urgent shift to brilliance and collaboration. But uniting a team for collaboration and creativity is a bit of trick, since each person is wearing a different hat, with differing worldview, work ethic, and personal motivations. Marketing, sales, human resources, and accounting departments are full of employees who each have different values and reasons for earning success and money for the company — and for themselves. C-level executives tell me all the time, “We have the best-of-breed experts in their fields. Knockdown experts. But they cannot form themselves into a team.” Here are four tips to create a team that collaborates and produces results:

Pick your best talent

Whether you are managing a soccer team or a food franchise, you need your best talent. Each player has a capacity for brilliance, however, some abilities may as well be shrouded in sheep’s wool for all you can see on the surface. As the leader, get to know your team members’ strengths and blind spots. Sure, the star player is the obvious pick, but consider that business success is never achieved by one person. The quieter members of your team often do the heavy lifting. Make sure you know who they are. Read the rest by clicking here - Stop being polite and other ways to create a truly collaborative team

good boss, Release Your Brilliance

Execution Is the Strategy

My friend and fellow speaker Laura Stack’s newest book, Execution IS the Strategy, hits bookstores on March 3, 2014! Laura has been working with leaders in the areas of strategy execution, employee productivity, and team performance for 22 years, and I’m pleased to highly recommend her work and her books.

Laura Stack believes a leader’s biggest challenge isn’t creating the strategy—it’s executing the strategy. It’s not about who has the best ideas—it’s who executes their ideas the best. Execution IS the Strategy shows you how to quickly drive strategic initiatives and get great results from your team. Laura’s L-E-A-D Formula™ outlines the conditions that must be present in your workplace for successful execution to occur:

L = Leverage: Are you strong enough as a leader, and do you have the right people and drivers in place to achieve your strategic priorities? If not, then you have a talent/resource issue.

E = Environment: Do you have the organizational atmosphere, practices, and unwritten ground rules to allow your employees to easily support your strategic priorities? If not, you have a cultural/engagement issue.

A = Alignment: Do your team members’ daily activities move them toward the accomplishment of the organization’s ultimate goals? If not, then you have a communication/productivity issue.

D = Drive: Are your organization’s leaders, teams, and employees nimble enough to move quickly once the first three keys are in place? If not, you have a speed/agility issue

What I really like about Laura’s work is the abundance of complimentary educational resources she’s providing with your book purchase (an incredible value for less than twenty bucks!):

  1.  A one-year subscription to her Strategic Execution online video series for leaders. Each five-minute weekly video comes with a transcript and a “training blueprint” with key points, discussion questions, and an exercise to help you take the learning back to your team. These videos provide valuable discussion points for your meetings and performance issues.
  2. An excerpt of the book with Table of Contents, Introduction, and Chapter 1 to whet your appetite and forward to your team.
  3. A Leader Guide and a Discussion Guide to help you run a book club.
  4. An online assessment of the Execution Quotient from the book, which will help you discover which of 36 obstacles are preventing your team from getting things done. You’ll discover where you’re stuck in the L-E-A-D Formula.
  5. A link to download thousands of dollars in additional leadership resources from several expert authors, including Joe Calloway, Liz Weber, Daniel Burrus, Kristin Arnold, Barry Banther, Dianna Booher, and Janelle Barlow.
  6. A four-part video series on the Four Keys of Successful Strategic Execution in the L-E-A-D Formula™ to share with your team. Use these training videos over the next month in your staff meetings for a great conversation starter on driving results.

To get this great package with your book purchase, go to Laura Stack will equip your leaders with the knowledge, skills, and inspiration to help them hit the ground running and turn your strategy into performance!



Training: How to know an employee’s learning style

Startup companies today live or die according to how well their emerging leaders can adapt to new skills and technology.

Established businesses must also make the shift, requiring their employees to learn new skills fast in order to grow the company and drive profits.

Employees vary widely in their ability to learn and retain new information, and they each have a preferred style of learning.

You can look at this as a positive thing. Ask the members of your team the following question:

“If you are the type who hates doing analytic work, aren’t you glad there are other employees who like doing it so you don’t have to?”

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You are the Brilliant Piece of the Puzzle

Do you recall putting together jigsaw puzzles when you were growing up? I do. What a fun and sometimes frustrating time as you attempted to create the big picture.

Did you know that the first jigsaw puzzle was created in the 1760s by pasting a map onto a flat rectangular section of wood? It was then cut into pieces with a jigsaw. Go figure.

Today, a common puzzle is made up of 300 to 1000 pieces that when put together create an exquisite picture. Many attempt to figure out where each piece fits by starting with the edges and building the sides of the puzzle. As you master putting together the sides and corners, all of sudden you have frame. As you continue to work from the outside in by moving pieces around, what at first seemed complex in nature becomes simple as the big picture emerges.

Michelangelo once said, “I saw the angel in the marble and carved until I set him free.”

Have you ever attempted to force a puzzle piece into a place where it didn’t fit? The harder you tried, the more flustered you became. You quickly moved on and started working on another section of the puzzle. If you were working with someone else, you were both attempting to figure where all of the pieces fit.

At some point, you may have turned over the box and saw the “big picture” and, suddenly, everything began to click. You began to witness the pieces falling into place as they fully interlocked and fastened together. Finally, you stood up and surveyed your work with a sense of accomplishment because your masterpiece finally was complete. In fact, you left it on the coffee table for at least 24 hours and begged your parents or siblings not to touch it. You wanted to savor this moment of accomplishment.  

Well, you are probably wondering, what does all of this mean for you today? Thank you for sticking with me. I submit to you, my friend, that this is the year, the moment, the minute, and the second when all of the disjointed pieces of your life puzzle are coming together. Pieces of a relationship that went south, a job that has sucked you dry and left you with nothing else to give, or perhaps a decision that you wish you could shift into reverse. These are many pieces in your life’s puzzle.

Now, let me balance this out by saying that there are also those pieces that represent the right decisions you’ve made regarding relationships, career, and decisions. However, as I am writing this at 30,000 feet on an Alaskan Airline flight from Vancouver, British Columbia to Los Angeles, my spider sense has kicked in, and I am sensing that some of you are looking at the scattered pieces of your life’s puzzle and wondering what the h-e-double-hockey-sticks is going on. What’s the use of the not-so-pretty pieces?

You’ve often heard the saying that “everything happens for a reason.” Well, I would add a fresh twist by saying that everything you’ve experienced to date are all pieces in your life’s puzzle—necessary pieces. Think about the pieces of your journey so far.

  • The place where you were born
  • The family in which you were born
  • The schools you’ve attended
  • Friends you’ve  made over the years
  • People you’ve dated
  • Events like getting married, separated, divorced, remarried, or just being happily single
  • Where you’ve lived, whether renting a place or saving to buy your first home, moving in and furnishing it
  • Where you’ve worked, promotions, being content where you are, quitting, being downsized, or retiring
  • Chances you’ve taken to start a business, grow a business, sell a business, or get out a business.

These are all pieces in the puzzle that is you. Now, let’s take it a step further. Wherever you find yourself in life, just realize my friend that you—yes, you—are a necessary piece of a bigger puzzle. Wherever you find yourself right now, that place is better because you brought your piece of the puzzle to complete the big picture.

For example, when you decided to get married, you brought your piece of the puzzle—your experiences, emotions, education, and expectations—to another person who showed up with their piece of the puzzle. Together, you both began to construct the jigsaw puzzle of a relationship.

This idea could apply across a wide spectrum of areas. However, I want to be mindful of your valuable time.

Here’s the point: In everything that you are and ever hope to be in this life, always recognize that your talent, gifts, and abilities together fit as a piece of puzzle that when connected to the right situation, makes things come alive and makes a difference.

For example, you may taste food and know that some seasoning is missing from the mix. But by adding a pinch of salt or sprinkle of black pepper, you then have the exact ingredient to round out the recipe to make it taste good.

Well, there are some things that will not be complete until you show up with your brilliant piece of the puzzle. Your piece of the puzzle is the linchpin, master key, fuel in the engine, code, secret sauce, solution to the problem, and the right answer at the right time.

I invite you, O’ Brilliant One, to be thankful and celebrate all of the pieces of your puzzle and to consider whether or not the big picture is truly complete until you show up with your puzzle piece in hand.

Here are few mental bumper stickers to remind you that whatever room you walk into, things just got better because you bring a unique puzzle piece to the picture.

  • You are the missing puzzle piece. You are brilliant! Stop apologizing for it. Start embracing it. Stop relinquishing it and relish in it.
  • Your puzzle piece needs to be seen. Come out from behind the curtain of limitation, stand on the stage of determination, and lift off like a rocket into exploration.
  • You part in the puzzle is good for others. Upload a compliment to the heart-drive of someone else.
  • There is no other puzzle piece like yours. Brilliant women take one good Christian Louboutin heel and shatter the glass ceiling of limitation with it.
  • Don’t let anyone diminish your piece of the puzzle. Be an independent thinker. If not, you may depend on the thinking of others. That would be half-brilliant!
  • The puzzle is not complete without you. Today, you—O’ Brilliant One—are shifting from profound obscurity to significant visibility. It’s about time. We’ve been waiting for you to show up.

If this is repeatable, then it’s tweetable. Why? Simon Says So! Remember that I love you and believe in you.



leadership, Personal & Career Prosperity, Shift
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