Can you find yourself in these tales of heroic leadership?

“Leaders go first.” A tautology? In a sense yes, because it’s definitional that leaders stand apart. But my friends Kouzes and Posner in The Leadership Challenge stand this “going first” on its head. They don’t mean “goes first” because he or she is brimming with confidence, bravely blazing a trail that no one else can … Continued

Authentic Leadership – What’s In It For You

Thank you to the nearly 300 people who responded to my survey about authentic leadership.  Your great input fuels today’s column. So, why focus on “authentic” leadership? Why not start-up leadership, courageous leadership, improvisational, trustworthy, heroic, servant or — well, pick your favorite adjective . . . dancing leadership, defiant, athletic, flourishing…Why authentic? Two reasons. … Continued

How to Lead a Subordinate to Become a Partner – Part 3

In a continuing series on the power of creating partnerships – including with those who are “below” us. Recap:  For the past two weeks I have been writing about how it’s possible to turn (nearly every) top-down relationship into a partnership, and that doing so generates greater substantive and relational results for both people. I … Continued

What to Do When an Important Partnership is Getting Worse

Note:  This article was originally published June 10, 2013 I’ve hit rocky patches with bosses, and when I was the boss, ran off the smooth road with business partners, friends — and even my bride/best friend.  In at least a few cases, we never recovered. In some, we found our way back to the road, but … Continued

What to do if They don’t listen to you

Yesterday, I went for a run with Hannah, a former student and TA of mine. She’s now doing amazing work at an excellent organization. She shared some reflections on how she felt the organization could improve. I shared with her that I thought her reflections made a lot of sense, told her how darned smart … Continued

Let Yourself Be Led by Those You Ostensibly Lead

Friends, Sometimes I wonder:  Have I gotten too soft, when so many of my Reading for Leading blogs are about relationship?  But then I figure:  how else can you lead or be led, except in relationship?  And this past week offered three ripe examples, one from hoops, and two in the semester’s end. I was … Continued

We Have Met the Enemy

Friends, I will go into battle at 8:00 AM, PST today, perhaps just after you have opened this.  I shall be leading a revolution.  Let me tell you the victory I seek and then the enemy(ies) I must conquer. I hope that it might help you, should you choose to lead . . . a … Continued

Oxymoron for the week – Everyday Leadership Superstar

Friends, Leadership lessons often leap from the world of sports.  And so often, NOT!  Today, a big NOT.  I opened a news site’s sports page, it was about playoffs, and typically, it was all about stars: Kevin Durant of Oklahoma City and the showdown between Joe Thornton of the Sharks (boo!) and Ryan Kessler of … Continued

This Probably Doesn’t Apply to You

This Probably Doesn’t Apply to You Friends, We think: This doesn’t apply to me.  So, (first) let me talk about who it does apply to; namely, Lee Iacocca, at least according to Steve Miller, a former Chrysler exec who went on to become CEO of Delphi.  Miller writes in his autobiography that Iacocca did great … Continued

Bosses Good and Not So

Friends, This week on my Everyday Leadership radio show we’ll hear from Curt Coffman, who with Marcus Buckingham co-authored the highly popular Gallup-data based book, First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently.  They weren’t the first to say it, but said it best: when it comes to employee satisfaction and engagement, … Continued