Is doing what you do getting you what you really want?

Start-ups are, in many ways, a lot easier than leading a seasoned company or organization. Once systems, methods, and procedures are in place they can become part of the corporate identity. Indeed, they become you and you become identified as them. If they work, okay. If they move your department, company, or organization toward your … Read more…

7 traits of a great planner

It’s time to become small minded. Visionaries are big thinkers. Planners may make big plans but they think small. They take the grand scheme of things and turn it into smaller steps. Planners are comprehensive thinkers whose skillset includes the ability to break things up into increments and whose experience has shown them the necessity … Read more…

3 leadership lessons I learned on board the USS Midway

In mid-January of this year my son and I spent the better part of a day touring the USS Midway, a decommissioned aircraft carrier berthed in San Diego harbor. I’ve been on naval vessels before but none as large as the Midway. As awe inspiring as the Midway’s war making capabilities were, both Nathaniel and … Read more…

Viability – lessons from Studebaker

They started making wagons for farmers, miners and the military in 1852. Incorporated in 1868 under the name Studebaker Brothers Manufacturing Company, they entered the automobile business in 1902 making electric vehicles. By 1904 they were making gasoline-powered vehicles and for the next 50 years became a major player in the business. With a reputation … Read more…

4 Lessons from a meddling boss

The hour was late, quite late in fact, somewhere around 8 p.m. The office had technically been closed since 5 but I was still there working with two volunteers. I was tasked with the job of preparing registration packets for the 1300 or so incoming guests at a conference. The sponsoring organization had contracted with … Read more…

Power Plays – The 4 Dilemmas We Face and What to Do About Them

Only 4 dilemmas, you ask? Well, truthfully, leaders and manager face many challenges daily. Some days it may seem like your hours are filled with nothing but. However, the dilemmas I refer to in the title are the encompassing dilemma that we face in principle. They manifest themselves in the unending stream of challenges and … Read more…

The work ethic and common sense of Elbert Hubbard

He started out a dedicated socialist although what he meant by socialist as defined in his own writing would not be what the word generally is understood to mean these days. When describing himself as a socialist he said… “I believe in every man working for the good of self; and in working for the … Read more…

Power Plays – Getting the job done

A friend once remarked that “It is amazing how much you can get done if you just do it.” A look at a jobs offered column on line or in a newspaper will inevitably turn up several with the qualifier “Must be a self-starter.”  Why? Because you hire people to extend your reach, multiply your … Read more…

Power Plays – Evaluation

So far, you have articulated your vision for the company or organization. You have identified your circle of concern and your limited circle of ability. You have listed the tasks that can be delegated to someone else and created a list of people to whom you can delegate those tasks. You have identified and articulated … Read more…

Keeper Trait #15 – Initiative

Many potential employers put it directly in their ads – “must be a self-starter.” It is, apparently, an all too unusual trait. Perhaps more than any other trait, it separates the successful from the failure, the winner from the loser, the prosperous from the poor. A person with initiative does not wait to be told … Read more…

Accountability, traits of keepers – those not-so exceptional people who make their life and your job so much more successful – #2

I had ordered a meal and let the conversation around the table carry away the wait. When the order arrived, it was a different server who placed my plate in front of me. It was almost correct. I had ordered fish and what was on my plate was indeed fish. The problem was I had … Read more…