What Stage of Responsibility Do You Lead From?

What Stage of Responsibility Do You Lead From?

Picture three people, briefcases in hand, standing on a commuter train platform.  Their train is 10 minutes late, they don’t know why, and no one’s made any announcement about it.

The first person texts her friend about how typical it is that the train’s late, and how this always happens when she has an early morning meeting.

The second person knows that there’s a transport website that updates commuters on late trains.  He checks this website on his smartphone, discovers the train will be another 10 minutes, and settles into a game of Angry Birds to wait it out.

The third person also checks the transport website with her smartphone.  When she discovers the train will be another 10 minutes, she goes up to each of the other two people on the platform and lets them know what the situation is.

I wonder which one of these three people you would want as your leader?

Here are the three stages of responsibility on the path to inspiring leadership.


Top Ways to Waste Time When Making a Decision

Top Ways to Waste Time When Making a Decision

What’s the most important part of decision-making?

Author Brian Tracy says, “Decisiveness is a characteristic of high-performing men and women.  Almost any decision is better than no decision at all.”

Putting off key decisions is like burying your head under the sheets so that the bogey man in the closet doesn’t get you.

Here are 3 mistakes that are unnecessarily stopping managers and leaders from making the very decisions that must be made, and fast.

Mistake #1: You tell yourself you need more time

There’s a decision sitting right in front of you, but rather than decide, you tell yourself you’ll make the decision later.  Then you settle into doing something else altogether.

Needing more time is an automatic strategy for some people who can’t make up their minds.  It’s as if time has a magical power in and of itself.  Somehow, after a certain number of hours or days, the time will be right for this decision. In the meantime, you don’t have to do any analysis, thinking, or consulting at all.

If this sounds like you, ask yourself, how will time passing bring this decision closer to me?  (It won’t.)  Can I just make the decision right now?  If not, what has to happen above and beyond the passage of time in order for this decision to be made?


Five Reasons Why Your Boss Isn’t Giving You Feedback

Five Reasons Why Your Boss Isn’t Giving You Feedback


It’s a tough gig, being the boss.

You’re tasked with translating business strategy into business tactics and squeezing the best possible result you can out of each quarter.

You’re responsible for balancing budgets in a constantly changing business environment, a feat which can feel crossing a tightrope over a chasm on a unicycle – and the wind’s getting gusty.

And on top of all that, you’re responsible for developing people, which some people think is the trickiest job of them all.

Feedback in the “too hard” basket

A senior manager I worked with said he stopped doing one-on-ones with his staff members because they became too much work for too little result.  What’s more, the greater the effort the senior manager put in to developing his team, the more his team behaved as if their career progression was his job, not theirs.

The truth is, there are a million things your boss would like to say to you, but doesn’t bother to anymore because it’s all too hard.

Here are five reasons your boss is keeping mum, and how employees who really do want feedback can overcome them.


Why Laziness Is A Key Leadership Tool

Why Laziness Is A Key Leadership Tool


What is it that calm, cool, and collected managers do that their harried, run-off-their-feet colleagues haven’t figured out yet?

Peter Drucker, management guru, said, “Action without planning is the reason for every failure.”  But even when you plan your actions in advance (starting your day getting clear on what you want to achieve, checking your schedule, making lists of things to do) you can still end up running around like a chicken with its head cut off if you don’t ask yourself critical questions about how to take action.

Planning + Action + The Secret Ingredient

One of the most powerful questions you can ask yourself before taking action is, “How could I get this done with a high quality outcome, but with the least amount of effort?”  Some would call that laziness.  Others (those more laid back, got-it-all-under-control types) would call it plain old smart thinking.

Here are 5 more questions to help you get really clear on how harnessing “laziness” on your part might just result in the best possible outcome for everyone.


The Top Four Motivational Needs of Your Team

The Top Four Motivational Needs of Your Team

Have you been involved in the employee engagement conversation?

Most large companies perform employee engagement surveys, or spend time and money identifying the level of employee satisfaction. And it’s because they know that disengaged employees can have a significant impact on a business’s bottom line.

But what happens when it comes time to put new strategies into place in order to increase your team’s engagement? What actually does motivate and engage your staff?

What is it that your team is actually looking for?

The four needs of all employees

Not surprisingly, the needs of employees are based on how people tick. They’re based on our human needs.

According to the theory of universal human needs, there are four needs of the personality that drive every single one of us, and tapping into those needs is a powerful way to keep your team motivated.

Getting those needs met underlies that sense of satisfaction, and meeting them in a quality way drives motivation at high levels.

The four needs are: certainty, variety, significance and connection.