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Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Resilience is one of the values of Positive Leadership. Here is what Michael Jordan has to say about 'failure':



In these videos, Roger Federer and Thierry Henry talk about the importance of Confidence, one of the primary Positive Leadership values:


Mental Toughness

Mental Toughness is an important Positive Leadership value. Here is what Roger Federer has to say about the role of mental strength in winning:


Hard Work

Hard Work is one of the key values of Positive Leadership. Here is what Roger Federer has to say about being at your best every day.


The Best of Us

The objective of the IOCs 2007/8 promotional campaign was to communicate the key Olympic values of Excellence, Friendship and Respect to a global youth audience. These are also Positive Leadership values.



Passion is another of the values which underpins the Positive Leadership model. Listen to what basketball superstar, LeBron James has to say about Passion:



Positive Leadership is a strategy which helps organisations and leaders (at all levels within the organisation) excel under pressure. One of the values which underpins the Positive Leadership model is Resilience. Here is what basketball superstar LeBron James has to say about resilience:


Aligning Tasks and Talents

Many organisations at this time of year complete their project planning for the coming 12 months. Priorities are set, goals are formed, and teams are tasked with their objectives for the year. Leaders and managers begin anew with the job of recreating, motivating and supporting team members in their efforts to reach the organisation’s objectives.

Top-tier leaders take this opportunity to realign talents and tasks in their workgroup. Your team members have specific skills, talents and preferences that you will use to reach your team’s goals. The key to success as a leader of such a workgroup is to help your team members understand these talents and preferences, align their work roles with them, and be sure that the team’s overall skills and talents complement each other.

That sounds like a lot of work. It is a lot of work. Yet one of the best indicators for motivated and engaged employees and high-performance teams is the degree to which team members are able to use their best capabilities on a regular basis.

Fortunately, there are some simple ways to think about talents and preferences that will help you get this initial teamwork set-up done well. William Daniels, a noted author on organisational performance provides a schema you can use to align tasks and talents.

Daniels tells us there are four types of tasks that team members may perform: routine tasks, troubleshooting tasks, project tasks and negotiable tasks. Each type of task is rated as to whether it is of high or low predictability, and of high or low timeliness.

Routine tasks are high in predictability and high in timeliness. Project tasks are high in predictability and low in timeliness - they can be completed in delayed intervals.

Troubleshooting tasks are low in predictability but high in timeliness, and negotiable tasks are low in predictability and low in timeliness.

Let’s take an example. An organisational leader, Susan, recently took an assessment designed to determine these preferences and skills. She found that her ideal work distribution would involve 10 percent routine tasks, 30 percent troubleshooting tasks and 60 percent project tasks.

These results turned out to confirm Susan's own thinking. She is the CEO of an independent organisation, who is exceptionally good at planning and executing project-based work - and she was brought in specifically to help develop and deliver a new strategic plan for her company.

Her role in this mid-sized organisation requires her to periodically "put out a fire" where she can use her troubleshooting skills. She does have responsibility for crafting budgets, financial reports and the like, but has staff to help with other routine task.

If Susan was the type of leader with a high troubleshooting preference, who liked to work in a fast-paced and at times chaotic environment where her ability to respond quickly to urgent needs was necessary, the position as a project planning and execution leader would not fit well with her. Worse, her motivation would quickly tire.

As a leader, you enhance your team’s effectiveness if you are able to match individual work preferences and skills with tasks and workflow. It doesn’t always have to be as good a match as Susan’s, but avoiding critical mismatches is important.

As you set up your year and review the plans with your team, help them express where they feel most energised by their work. An important question to ask is when or where they feel drained or de-energised by a work task. This could be an indication of a talent and task mismatch.

As the new year begins, take the opportunity to increase the performance capability of your team or organisation. Align talents and tasks for success in 2010.