background preloader

Leadership skills & training

Facebook Twitter

Managing The Super-Talented is Super-Difficult. Playbook-how-to-motivate-managers. A CEO's guide to leadership development. “The difference between involvement and commitment is like ham and eggs. The chicken is involved; the pig is committed.” — Martina Navratilova “The biggest differentiator of companies that excel in leadership development is the commitment and ownership of the CEO or top executive.” — Dan McCarthy Don’t you hate it when people quote themselves? It’s easy for a “chicken” CEO to just pay lip service to leadership development. All they need to do is show up at the annual talent review and nod their heads; stop by a few training programs to give a quick talk, approve the training budget, and read the script written for them by HR that tells them to say, “People are our more important assets” at every employee gathering. You can tell what’s really important to them by taking a look at their calendar to see where they spend their time, the agenda items on their executive team meetings, and by what gets measured. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.

If it’s left up to each manager, it won’t happen. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 7 Leadership Rules From the SEALs Commander Who Got bin Laden. Three years ago, U.S. Navy SEALs staged a daring raid into Pakistan, where they caught and killed the world's most-wanted terrorist. The mission to get Osama bin Laden was highly dangerous, and it ranks among the boldest strikes in the history of U.S. special operations. The man who planned and commanded the raid, Admiral William McRaven, is a veteran leader who served at every level of the SEALs and who literally wrote the book on special operations. (He's also the kind of leader who took the time to reply to a 6-year-old boy who sent him a letter asking if a Navy SEAL is quieter than a ninja.) Recently, McRaven gave a speech at West Point about the top lessons of his 36-year military career. 1.

Let's face it: There are so many bad leaders in the world--for the simple reason that good leadership is really hard. "Nothing--nothing--is more daunting, more frustrating, more complex, than trying to lead men and women in tough times," McRaven said. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Three Ways Leaders Can Listen with More Empathy - Christine M. Riordan. By Christine M. Riordan | 11:00 AM January 16, 2014 Study after study has shown that listening is critical to leadership effectiveness.

So, why are so few leaders good at it? Too often, leaders seek to take command, direct conversations, talk too much, or worry about what they will say next in defense or rebuttal. Instead, leaders need to start by really caring about what other people have to say about an issue. Research has linked several notable behavior sets with empathic listening. The second set of empathic listening behaviors is processing, which includes the behaviors we most commonly associate with listening. The third set of behaviors, responding, involves assuring others that listening has occurred and encouraging communication to continue.

Overall, it is important for leaders to recognize the multidimensionality of empathetic listening and engage in all forms of behaviors. The ability and willingness to listen with empathy is often what sets a leader apart. Why leadership-development programs fail. For years, organizations have lavished time and money on improving the capabilities of managers and on nurturing new leaders. US companies alone spend almost $14 billion annually on leadership development. Colleges and universities offer hundreds of degree courses on leadership, and the cost of customized leadership-development offerings from a top business school can reach $150,000 a person. Moreover, when upward of 500 executives were asked to rank their top three human-capital priorities, leadership development was included as both a current and a future priority.

Almost two-thirds of the respondents identified leadership development as their number-one concern. Only 7 percent of senior managers polled by a UK business school think that their companies develop global leaders effectively, and around 30 percent of US companies admit that they have failed to exploit their international business opportunities fully because they lack enough leaders with the right capabilities. 1. 2. 3. 4.

How to Ask Better Questions - Judith Ross. One of your direct reports walks into your office looking for help: the rollout of the new line of Web-based products she is managing is falling behind schedule. All the prototypes have been created and beta tested, but she is having trouble getting final sign-off from the VP of IT. Deadlines have come and gone, and no amount of reminding or cajoling will get him to focus on her project. As her manager, what should you do? If your first instinct is to suggest a solution, think again. Although providing employees with answers to their problems often may be the most efficient way to get things done, the short-term gain is overshadowed by long-term costs.

By taking the expedient route, you impede direct reports’ development, cheat yourself of access to some potentially fresh and powerful ideas, and place an undue burden on your own shoulders. Questions packing this kind of punch are usually open-ended — they’re not looking for a specific answer. Why are you behind schedule? How Would You Score Yourself as a Manager of People? So, how would you score yourself as a manager and a leader? Don’t know, or not so sure? Well, if you’re not sure, let me tell you that your people are – they are constantly scoring you! So, if you have not evaluated your own performance in a while, now is a good time to start! I met recently with the CEO of a large company who wanted to discuss some issues that he was having with his team.

However, there was one piece missing – feedback on himself as a manager a leader. I asked him to rate himself as he would any other member of the team in terms of team management skills and leadership. Truthfully, he was pretty challenged to do this straightforward exercise – like many others I ask the same of, I have to say. To give him a helping hand, I put a series of questions to him, which would give a fair indicator, and since he found the questions and the ensuing conversation so helpful I thought I would share the questions with you here so that you can do your own evaluation: John Murphy. 6 Ways To Make Your Leadership And Workplace Fun Again.

Schmooze or Lose: How the Lost Art of Negotiation Led to a Shutdown. Increasing Productivity and Engagement. Increasing Productivity & EngagementPosted on 28 September, 2013 by Gordon Tredgold Often when we talk about increasing productivity, what we really me is that people should just work harder. This is not really a motivating concept, because what we are really saying is that we didn’t think that our teams were working hard enough before.

Which actually has the opposite effect and will demotivate our teams. We need to understand that there is a big difference working hard and being more productive. Asking people to just work harder, is the lazy leaders way of trying to increase output. This is where we should be really doing our job and ensuring that our teams have the right tools, training and that they are being effective, i.e. that as much of their work results in positive output as possible. When people see that their effort is turned directly into output, they are much more prepared to increase their effort. 21 Ways to Be a Better Leader Without Breaking a Sweat. 7 Leadership Lies You Need to Stop Believing. We live in an age that seeks quick fixes and easy answers. Sometimes leaders abdicate their thinking to others and accept "prevailing wisdom," which is often an oxymoron.

I grew up, like most, accepting many things at face value. It wasn't until I started giving important issues like leadership a second and third thought that I realized I'd been believing what turned out to be some serious leadership myths. Here are seven leadership lies and why they simply aren't true: 1. "All managers are leaders. " Truth: some managers can lead and others don't or cannot. Managers are good at setting up, monitoring and maintaining systems and processes. Leadership always involves change, improvement and growth. 2. A young person who is 6'6" might have the predisposition to play basketball, but he or she still needs to learn the skills before they can play successfully. 3.

If your people always come to you for answers, you're stunting their ability to think. 4. 5. 6. 7. And you, Mr. or Ms. Making Yourself Indispensable. Idea in Brief Good leaders can become exceptional by developing just a few of their strengths to the highest level—but not by merely doing more of the same.

Instead, they need to engage in the business equivalent of cross-training—that is, to enhance complementary skills that will enable them to make fuller use of their strengths. For example, technical skills can become more effective when communication skills improve, making a leader’s expertise more apparent and more accessible. Once a few of their strengths have reached the level of outstanding, leaders become indispensable to their organizations despite the weaknesses they may have.

Artwork: Vincent Fournier, Space Project: MDRS #04, Mars Society, 2008, U.S.A. A manager we’ll call Tom was a midlevel sales executive at a Fortune 500 company. After a dozen or so years there, he was thriving—he made his numbers, he was well liked, he got consistently positive reviews. As far as Tom could tell, nothing. But how? The Interaction Effect. Leadership lessons from the Royal Navy - McKinsey Quarterly - Organization - Strategic Organization.

Britain’s Royal Navy is a disciplined command-and-control organization that moves across 140 million square miles of the world’s oceans. Although few environments are tougher than a ship or submarine, I’ve been struck, while conducting research on the Royal Navy, by the extent to which these engines of war run on “soft” leadership skills. For officers leading small teams in constrained quarters, there’s no substitute for cheerfulness and effective storytelling. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that naval training is predicated on the notion that when two groups with equal resources attempt the same thing, the successful group will be the one whose leaders better understand how to use the softer skills to maintain effort and motivate. I believe that the same principle holds true for business. Among the many softer leadership skills important to the Royal Navy, I highlight here the aforementioned cheerfulness and storytelling, which to me were both unexpected and broadly applicable.

Foster a Culture of Gratitude - Christine M. Riordan. By Christine M. Riordan | 1:00 PM April 23, 2013 In the movie Remember the Titans, Coach Herman Boone takes his high school football team to the battleground of Gettysburg. Having inherited a fractured and divided squad, Coach Boone implores the players to “take a lesson from the dead. If we don’t come together, right now on this hallowed ground, we too will be destroyed, just like they were.” In every workplace and on every team, all people have the innate desire to feel appreciated and valued by others. High performing teams have well-defined goals, systems of accountability, clear roles and responsibilities, and open communication. Research on gratitude and appreciation demonstrates that when employees feel valued, they have high job satisfaction, are willing to work longer hours, engage in productive relationships with co-workers and supervisors, are motivated to do their best, and work towards achieving the company’s goals.

Help others develop. Six tips to change your workplace culture. Invest in the recruitment process “I used to think I needed to hire people based on education and experience,” says Tammy O’Rourke, who leads a medical clinic in Belleville, Ont. “But now I pay more attention to things like personality and fit.” Using an objective assessment process that measures the fit between the candidate and your team is a good place to start.

Make time to think together Create regularly scheduled time to share observations and ideas without a structured agenda. It could be a semi-annual half-day to reflect on your successes or it could be more frequent and less formal. Dr. Don’t be afraid to take risks Encourage an entrepreneurial climate, where risk taking is celebrated. Challenge your assumptions When we don’t know the full story, we tend to fill in the blanks with assumptions, many of which have little grounding in reality. Learn from when things work It’s important to identify challenges, but why stop there? Mind your manners. Three Qualities Every Leader Needs to Succeed on a Team - Peter Bregman.

“I want your help developing my direct reports into stronger leaders,” John* the new CEO of Fasseni, a $350 million technology company, told me several years ago. Initially, I approached the request like any consultant might. First, I asked John why he wanted my help. He told me that Fasseni had stagnated. They had been hovering around the same revenue point for years and their competitors were gaining market share. He saw opportunity and knew that success lay in the hands of his direct reports. That made sense to me.

So John and I defined a list of qualities a great leader should have, like expertise in their field, strategic thinking capability, common sense intelligence, powerful communication skills, problem solving prowess, and similar traits. Then I spent some time interviewing him and his direct reports to better understand their strengths and weaknesses as they related to the list of leadership qualities we had defined. Here’s what I saw: Gifted. *Names and some details changed. 5 Keys to Inspiring Leadership, No Matter Your Style. Forget the stereotypical leadership image of a buttoned-up person in a gray suit hauling around a hefty briefcase. Today, standout leaders come in all shapes and sizes. She could be a blue jeans-clad marketing student, running a major ecommerce company out of her dorm room.

He might be the next salt-and-pepper-haired, barefoot Steve Jobs, presenting a groundbreaking new device at a major industry conference. "Our research indicates that what really matters is that leaders are able to create enthusiasm, empower their people, instill confidence and be inspiring to the people around them," says Peter Handal, chief executive of New York City-based Dale Carnegie Training, a leadership-training company. That's a tall order. However, as different as leaders are today, there are some things great leaders do every day. Here, Handal shares his five keys for effective leadership: 1. Great leaders are brave enough to face up to challenging situations and deal with them honestly. 2. 3. 4. 5. Successful Leadership Skills. For too long, we’ve thought of “hard skills” and “soft skills” as mutually exclusive.

Hard skills are supposed to provide the value, and soft skills supposed to be subordinate, inferior, and all about feelings. Some frameworks of leadership reinforce this myth by encouraging positioning leaders as above the group and magically removed from doubt and anxiety. In reality, there is nothing “soft” about the skills needed to relate to people well enough to lead them. True leadership involves both hard skills and harder skills. Here’s what I mean. Defining Hard and Soft Skills “Hard skills” are often thought of as the occupational skills necessary to complete the tangible elements of a job.

“Soft skills” can be seen as the behavioral ways in which people go about their occupational tasks. Hard skills can get the job done. Leadership’s Hard and Soft Skills Leadership’s Harder Skills Many leaders end up over-compensating. Improving Your Harder Skills 1. 2. 3.