Category: Leadership

CEO Coaching: Don’t Be a Firefighter — Be a Pilot!

Running a company (with the help of many others!) requires thinking about numerous things — often simultaneously, it seems. Your top competitor just launched a great product, your VP of HR has some very disturbing numbers about turnover, and your bank is worried that you’re close to breaking a covenant. And then there’s that upcoming […]

Business Strategy: Use Reason, But Serve Passions

“Reason is, and ought to be, the slave of the passions and can never pretend to any other office than to serve and obey them.” —Thomas Hume Hume’s use of the word “passions” is currently thought to mean “desires.” As a guy who favors thinking over feeling in decision-making (i.e., if you’re a Myers Briggs […]

CEO Coaching: Must Have Tools

Archimedes said, “Give me a lever and a place to stand and I can move the world.” When I was a CEO or prior to that in other executive positions (i.e. my “place to stand”), I was frequently slowed down by challenges for which I did not have a tool to solve. Creativity, focus and […]

CEO Leadership Traits: I Thought I Was Japanese!

A recent NPR story highlighted DNA testing services (e.g., 23andMe and Ancestry.com) and how many people are surprised when they’re of different makeup than they thought. Some folks are disturbed when their life’s narrative doesn’t match the real story. It turns out that many of us are not as self-aware as we think. (To my […]

Effective Leadership: Meetings Are Meat, Not Potatoes

A recent message from a contact mentioned a wonderful retreat he’d experienced because the organization’s new leader brought in a “motivational speaker.”  What a bunch of crap! You take over an organization and hire a motivational speaker because you have nothing to say?! Business should be fun, but don’t waste the opportunity to engage your […]

Effective Leadership: Do the Work!

Years ago (and pounds ago!) I ran marathons. I was a young father and worked too much, so I ran them with less-than-desirable training miles per week, causing me to fade at the 20-mile mark. I could not finish strong. I was proud of my effort and times but could’ve done much better with more […]

CEO Coaching: Resisting Normative Pressure

Most of my blog readers don’t wake up every day and think, “I want to be only as good as most other people.” I know that many of you want to leave your mark on the world and succeed versus just survive. (There are many ways to succeed, well beyond money and status.) Conformity and […]

CEO Leadership Traits: Jerks and Wimps Need Not Apply

Intuitively, most people would agree that CEOs shouldn’t be jerks or wimps. No one wants to work for either. However, some jerks and wimps make it into the C-suite. I’ve run into many, as have some of you. If you have jerklike or wimplike tendencies yourself and are an executive, pay attention. If you’re on […]