One of the great joys I get from my work is the opportunity to connect and build relationships with some truly exceptional leaders and people. One of them is my friend, Bob Bennett, the guest writer of this piece. After seeing one of Bob’s talks two years ago, I knew this was a leader I had to connect with, and our conversations and emails since then have been inspiring, informative, and just plain fun. When you read the guest piece he’s written below, you’ll understand why.
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I am blessed to have grandchildren, because they teach me something new every day – even things like leadership and business.
One week shy of their third birthday my wife and I took two of our grandchildren, May and Tucker, to Disney World. They are twins; May is an instigator and manipulator. Tucker is ‘all boy’ and extremely active but sensitive. Both have a quest for knowledge; they can talk with you all day about habitats, inertia, paleontologists, and, as Tucker calls it, ‘gestion,’ the art of turning the food one eats into energy.
We stayed at a cabin in the Wilderness Village. We spent four full days at the separate theme parks, going on every ride that did not have a height restriction.
While packing to leave after the ‘adventure,’ my wife and I wondered which were the kids’ favorite rides. The decision: Tucker – Toy Story; May – Ariel. So, as would any grandparent, we asked them.
The first surprise for us was the speed with which they answered the question. They both answered immediately Click here to continue reading »”How We Can Develop A Culture Of Learning”
Over the past two weeks, I’ve had the distinct honour of being recognized by two organizations for my work in the field of leadership. The first came from Inc. Magazine which recognized me as one of the Top 100 Leadership and Management Experts, putting me alongside such leadership heavyweights as Sir Richard Branson, Vineet Nayar, Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Peter F. Drucker, and placing one spot below Bill Gates.
The second recognition I received came from Kelly Services in their list of the “Top 7 Blogs Every Manager Should Read”, where I found myself being included alongside such preeminent sites as the Harvard Business Review, Bloomberg Businessweek’s Management Blog, The Gallup Blog, and Seth Godin to name a few.
Naturally, I took to my various networks to share this news, both to invite others to join me in celebrating these recognitions, but also as an opportunity for me to express my appreciation for the continued support and encouragement I’ve received over the years that has helped to place me in such esteemed company.
Among the various congratulatory wishes, renowned leadership expert, best-selling author, and award-winning leadership speaker Jim Kouzes posed an interesting question to me – looking back at the journey that has lead to me such accolades and recognition, “what would you say are the 3 to 5 lessons you’ve learned along the way?”
Although my reply to Jim’s query focused on some of the lessons I’ve learned from writing this blog for the past 5 years, I realized that some of these lessons also apply to the field of leadership, in how they can guide us to become the kind of leader our employees need us to be so they can succeed and thrive.
So here now are 3 lessons I’d like to share from my own experiences to ensure that we’re not only successful in our efforts to guide and inspire those we lead, but that we’re able to achieve the underlying vision and drive that defines why we commit ourselves to serving those under our care. Click here to continue reading »”3 Personal Lessons On How To Succeed At Leadership”
After enduring the long and at-times extreme weather conditions of this past winter season, many of us are understandably relieved to find ourselves under the welcoming and hospitable conditions that are often associated with Springtime.
Of course, with the return of warm weather and sunny skies, there is a strong temptation to rip apart the brown and tired masses in our gardens in order to make room for new plants already in bloom. That we start over with a fresh batch of flowers instead of providing the current plants in our garden with the time they need to awaken and resume their growth cycle.
It’s a temptation that’s mirrored in many organizations today where the shift is moving from surviving the economic storm of the past few years to seeking opportunities for growth and expansion. As with our gardens, it can be tempting to simply press ahead with new initiatives with little thought on the impact it might have on the collective potential that currently lies dormant within our workforce.
But if we are to ensure a sustainable, long-term growth for our organization, we need to make intentional our efforts to tap into the discretionary effort found within our employees. That in looking ahead, we connect the motivational drives of those under our care with what we plan to fuel our organization’s growth. In this way, we can provide a strong foundation on which to build our organization’s health and long-term viability.
To help you achieve this in your organization, here are four measures you can implement in order to plant the seeds for your organization’s future growth and ability to thrive in the years to come. Click here to continue reading »”Planting Seeds For Your Organization’s Growth”
The following is a guest piece by best-selling author Kevin Kelly.
Launching and leading an “xceptional” business is simpler than you’ve ever imagined. Not easier. Not less time consuming. Not less gut wrenching, but simpler.
Counter-intuitively, many successful entrepreneurs didn’t start with a compelling vision, a wow idea or indeed a workable business plan. Some went on to dominate a market without any previous background in it.
So what’s the secret?
Groundbreaking research conducted by Columbia University’s Amar Bhidé in 2000 titled “The Origin and Evolution of New Businesses” revealed that 88% of “breakthrough companies” were the result of “xceptional execution of an ordinary idea”, according to their owners.
Amar told me in 2013 that some factors have changed since he first published his findings, for example, access to capital is more widespread through crowd-funding, along with a mainstream popularization of entrepreneurship and rise of a global startup ecosystem. However, these developments haven’t changed the fundamental principle of his work.
In my latest book, “DO! The Pursuit of Xceptional Execution”, I interview entrepreneurs from around the world. They are the leaders of some of the most Click here to continue reading »”Learning The Keys To Exceptional Execution”
As we welcome the arrival of a New Year, many of us are naturally filled with hope and excitement about the possibilities and opportunities for growth, change and success over the upcoming 12 months.
The beginning of a new year is also an excellent opportunity for reflection; of contemplating where we’ve been and where we could be. From that perspective, I’d like to share with you some of the leadership insights I’ve written about over the past 52 weeks, not just as a reminder of the lessons that were shared, but also so we can contemplate how we might apply them going forward.
Instead of a list of articles, though, I’d like to share a quote from ten of the most shared and commented pieces I wrote for my blog this past year, along with a link back to that piece if you’d like to learn more about that topic.
In this way, I hope to inspire you to celebrate your accomplishments of the past year in leading your team and organization, as well as to encourage you to find opportunities to become the kind of leader your employees need you to be. The kind of leader who will not only help them to succeed and thrive, but one where you will also find a sense of purpose and fulfilment in what you do.
So here now are my quotes from the top 10 leadership pieces I wrote from 2013, as selected by you, the readers of my blog:
The key to building a thriving organization:
“In our pursuit to create meaning through our shared efforts, we need to ensure that we’re creating value not just for our customers or shareholders, but also for our employees, if not also for the community in which we operate … we have to make sure we’re creating and communicating Click here to continue reading »”A Look Back At My Top 10 Leadership Insights From 2013″