When writing No-Drama Leadership which was published in 2015, I had the privilege to interview one of the greatest leaders of our time, Francis Hesselbein, former CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. Frances defines leadership as a matter of how to be, not how to do, saying, “We have spent half of our lives learning how to do, and teaching other people how to do. But we know in the end it is the quality and character of the leader that determines the performance—the results.” My January article offers sixteen ways to elevate your leadership, with the emphasis on who you need to “BE” in order to achieve these simple but often neglected “to-dos.”read more
We always have the opportunity to create anew if we stop trying to change others and simply work on ourselves. We can always set a boundary, ask for what we want, give a little slack, or choose how much time to spend with someone. We have the power to speak truth kindly and let other people’s emotional reactions belong to them instead of hiding who we are to protect them.read more
You’ve heard the saying that most of us could be successful if we could just get out of our own way. As a leader you certainly see this truth over and over when you see an employee or colleague struggle and you try to help, but they resist your advice, or coaching.
The biggest challenge for a caring leader is coaching others out of resistance. The other person, (the one you lead) has some sort of reoccurring problem that no matter what advice, help or insights you share is rejected over and over again. Yet this person continues to come to you with the problem—recanting various versions of why things won’t work, what everyone else is doing wrong and why they have no choices in the matter. (BTW: this pattern often appears in friendships as well.)read more
Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone would just stop their drama? If it wasn’t for county government, your boss, and your employees things would just sail along, right?
But… is it really your boss? Is it really county government? Is it really your employees?read more
When you find yourself dealing with emergencies on a regular basis, surprised by unexpected drama and drowning in a sea of overwhelm look for a common thread: the failure to ask for help.
In my consulting work I’m seeing a cultural trend where people pretend things are OK, when in reality the surprises continue to disrupt productivity, and turnover becomes the hidden leak in the boat.
There are several underlying reasons new and even seasoned leaders do not ask for help. This article explores these reasons and offers practical tips to help build a culture of collaboration and support.read more
If you want to step into a new truth, you must start talking about yourself differently. I recommend The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz to help you create a new truth. Ruiz says that if you want to experience heaven on earth you must learn to keep the first agreement: Be impeccable with your word. Ruiz says that the first agreement is actually the most important of the four agreements and the most difficult to keep.read more
When an employee becomes a leader he or she goes through an identity crisis that may last for years. (I explain more of this in No-Drama Leadership.) The new leader doesn’t feel confident, yet is afraid to ask for support for fear of being viewed as incompetent. This gap in development and lack of confidence surfaces in one of several ways:read more
One definition of integrity is the state of being complete or undivided. To live in complete integrity is more of a process than an absolute because sometimes our competing desires come into conflict. For example, you want to lose weight but you like to eat out. You want to make more money but you also want to have more free time. Or you say that you value high productivity but you also value relationships. Eventually these desires will compete and that the competition will either divide your loyalties or strengthen your commitments. When you are divided because of competing commitments, I call this “The Integrity Gap.”read more
When it comes to history you can overcome it, benefit from it or blame it for your circumstances. With your imagination, you can either create a dream or a nightmare. Your desires either provide focus or distraction. You can either learn to master your emotion or become a slave to them. The key is to use the conscious mind to take charge instead of being ruled by the unconscious mind. We teach these executive skills in my new program: Critical Skills for the No-Drama Leader.read more
If you constantly criticize and judge yourself, you aren’t going to be giving anyone else much more slack. If you aren’t able to manage your self-talk, your self-talk will leak out in your communication. Instead of speaking your truth, you will end up blaming someone else for your experience, using manipulation to get your point across, or justifying your bad behaviors.read more