Monthly Archives: November 2010

How’s Your Ability to Respond?

Dr. Stephen Covey in The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People takes apart the word “responsibility.” He suggests looking at this word as two separate elements: Response Ability In other words, we have an ability to respond. One of the things that humans have that most animals don’t have is this ability to choose how […]
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Are You Leading on Autopilot?

I read somewhere that 80% of the time, we’re operating on autopilot. Yet we expect ourselves to “do great things.” I’ll bet that the only people who accomplish great things while on autopilot are basketball superstars. Natural athletes and champions have so much talent and practice so much, that they react instinctively. At least, it […]
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Leadership Ego: 3 Ways to Balance It Out

Let’s look at how we can maintain a healthy ego for ourselves. There are three keys to developing a balanced ego: Humility Curiosity Honesty Without losing confidence in who we are or lessening the importance of what we’ve achieved, humility creates a desire to reach the next level of performance. It doesn’t lose sight of […]
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4 Signs Your Ego Is Too Big

It’s inevitable: when you get good at something, you do more of it. When you’re recognized for your strengths, you try to emphasize them. The problems arise when a strength evolves into a liability. Consider this example: Optimism is a preferred trait in leaders. The optimistic leader: Isn’t frozen by reality, even when it’s negative […]
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Leadership Ego: The Costs of Big Ambition

“Ego is the invisible line item on every company’s profit and loss statement.” — David Marcum and Steven Smith in egonomics: What Makes Ego Our Greatest Asset (or Most Expensive Liability), Fireside, 2007 There’s a big difference between “big ego” and healthy ambition. Many of the executives I work with have all  started their careers […]
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Leadership Power: 3 Ways Power Changes People

How much does power go to your head? Really? Then you’re the exception if you’re magnanimous and generous of spirit. According to numerous studies, people put into power positions are prone to a couple of behavior changes: Power makes most people become more focused on their own needs and wants Power changes people to become […]
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Leaders and Alpha Male Behaviors…

Being a boss is much like being a high-status primate in a jungle environment. The others in the troupe watch the alpha male closely. Studies of baboon troupes, for example show that a typical member glances at the alpha male every 20-30 seconds. But the leader doesn’t return their interest. The same is true in […]
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Leadership Assertiveness: Average Is Perfect

How much should a manager push people to perform? How much assertiveness works best? If you’re too assertive, you can damage relationships and be perceived as a micro-managing busy-body. If you don’t push enough and hold them accountable then it’s easy for people to miss tough goals. What is “just right” management? Two researchers, Daniel […]
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7 Questions Leaders Can Ask to Build Trust

Coaching should be a common leadership behavior, integrated in all leadership communications. Although coaching sessions should be planned out in advance, informal coaching happens any time, any place. Often it consists of on-the-spot feedback, either positive, neutral or negative. Even neutral comments show people you care and you notice them. As I mentioned earlier this […]
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Do You Have a Leadership Trust-Deficit?

Research by the Henley Centre has shown that while nine out of ten people will trust their spouse or partner and eight out of ten their children, less than a third (27 percent) trust retailers or manufacturers, while just 14 percent trust either the government or advertisers! What is the level of trust of employees […]
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