Barking at the Troops: leaders and communication

Barking at the troops.  Happens all the time.  The boss wants to inspire his people, urge them to battle, lead them to victory.  Coax them into making better widgets, sell more work, complete tasks on time and under budget.

She goes from meeting to meeting, giving her ten-minute pep talks.  He takes a few softball questions.  She tells everybody to send her an email if they have suggestions.  He says he really wants to know what they think.

Those on the receiving end of the encounter are shaking … Read more

Leaders and Character: Know Thyself

To lead, know thyself. So it’s said over and over.

And to know thyself means knowing your character.  What’s your character?  How do you describe it?  For some, the answer seems easy.  The descriptors roll off their tongues.  To others it’s a struggle.  A struggle because it can be hard to describe yourself at the very basic level of character.

One definition says it’s one of the attributes or features that make up and distinguish an individual.  Another says it’s your true nature, who you really are.  Character … Read more

Bettering the Odds for Successful Change

Results for change projects are dismal.  Only 20-plus percent of change projects succeed.  The rest fail.

Why?  It’s important for clients to know.  It’s important for change practitioners to know.  Especially since so many more people are showing up inside and out of companies and other organizations seeking to help with change.

There is truth to the notion that change is too dramatic a word.  Change many times is incremental.  It comes a little at a time over a long period of time. One of the best ways … Read more

You’re Only as Good as the People in the Room…

You’re only as good as the people in the room and they’re only as good as what they know. I repeat it so often it’s become a mantra.

So often in working with teams or groups, there is enormous opportunity for vision, commitment and planning to do something bigger, better, more courageous, more all encompassing. There’s opportunity to take the organization up a notch or several notches. There’s low-hanging fruit to be had or an easy fix to stop a downward spiral.

But the team or group doesn’t … Read more

Keller Webster, President, KWA Construction

“There’s no question Bill has set us up to be successful in the future. He has deep and sound processes. He has helped us stay focused on our new strategies and been a reliable source of knowledge in implementing those strategies. When we’ve had questions, he’s been there to guide us. His experience shows through in the depth of discussions we’ve had on a wide variety of management topics.” Keller Webster – President KWA Construction… Read more

Defining Leadership: The Art of Creation

Take a group of 20 or so smart people. Put them in a room. Ask them to share a story of the best leadership they have ever experienced – either leadership they demonstrated or leadership they witnessed. Then ask what the underlying leadership traits were.

The answers will nearly always look something like this: The leader set an example. He aligned values and actions. She had a vision for the future or a direction she wanted to go. And she got others to buy in. He sought less … Read more