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Saturday, April 30, 2011

Positive Leadership: The Importance of the Right Team Attitude

Herschel Walker talks about the attitude of the Georgia Bulldogs 1980 National Championship team.


Friday, April 29, 2011

Positive Leadership: Dressing for Leadership

Jewellery designer and fashion blogger Wendy Brandes talks about how Hillary Clinton, Sarah Palin and Michelle Obama have handled the tricky question of dressing like a leader:


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Positive Leadership: How To Handle Difficult Conversations

Mary Ellen Slayter, Senior Editor of SmartBrief sits down with the Chief Human Resource Officer for Time Warner Cable Paul Falcone to discuss how HR managers can best manage the 101 toughest employee conversations:


Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Positive Leadership: A Video Every Leader Will Benefit From Watching

In one of the most memorable races in Olympic history Derek Redmond of Great Britain finishes his 400m Semi-Final crying on the shoulder of his father. Powerful. Utterly Olympic.

This take on Redmond's historic Olympic run gets the goose bumps going, but also drives home some valuable leadership lessons. We're all subject to disappointment and failure, but leaders are defined and remembered for how they react in times of crisis. Similarly, the people we surround ourselves with are often the keys to our achievements, helping us through when the going gets tough. When your time comes, how will you react, and who will help you through the finish line?


Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Positive Leadership: The Big Question

Famed Harvard Legal professor, Alan Dershowitz, asks developing and aspiring leaders to think forward. Taking a page from science fiction, Dershowitz asks his students to imagine the future and what issues will have to be confronted. In asking the question, his hope is to get people thinking about where we're going, prepare them to confront challenges, and assume a leadership position along the way:


Monday, April 25, 2011

Positive Leadership: Usain Bolt - The Art & Science of Coaching (Parts 1, 2 & 3)


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Positive Leadership: The Changing Face of Leadership

Recent studies in the field of management, particularly related to leadership, indicate that there are dramatic changes happening in how people in organisations perceive a leader and leadership. Gone are the days when a leader is recognised by the glow in his face or the charisma he displayed. It is no longer a mandatory trait that a leader exudes power from his face.

Organisations today observe that ordinary individuals also demonstrate strong leadership traits and are able to drive teams towards achievement. A leader is no longer expected to have that “larger-than-life,” flamboyant behaviour. It is also a widely observed phenomenon that it is not just the individuals at the top level who play leadership roles, there are many others down the hierarchy; who demonstrate the ability and the keenness to lead teams and nurture team spirit.

Another characteristic that is being accepted by the majority of organisations is that leaders are not born. Even the shop-floor supervisor or the frontline executive could instil a vision in their colleagues and  subordinates and help them share a common goal.

Furthermore, the understanding exists that leaders do not coerce others to do work. They achieve results through developing a shared vision and communicating it to others while inducing the passion and commitment. Commitment is also seen as one of the important traits that stands out in most surveys done on leadership during the last decade.

Leaders today must outline tasks for their teams, and then focus on equipping the team members with the right knowledge, skills and attitude and also get their buy-in. Employees at all levels of the organisation are increasingly being asked to demonstrate the capacity to lead and ensure that the organisation stays abreast of changing times. 


Saturday, April 23, 2011

Positive Leadership: Must Be The Music


Friday, April 22, 2011

Positive Leadership: Building a Better Life in Business

Former HSBC Chairman Stephen Green, author of Good Value: Reflections on Money, Morality and an Uncertain World, talks about money, morality and an uncertain world.


Thursday, April 21, 2011

Positive Leadership: Rediscovering the Why of Work

Whole Foods co-founder John Mackey advocates for creating organisations that value teamwork, transparency and trust. 


Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Positive Leadership: The Six Attributes Every New Employee Needs

Jim Collins' book, Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap... and Others Don'thttp://www.assoc-amazon.com/e/ir?t=positileader-21&l=btl&camp=213689&creative=392969&o=1&a=0066620996 attained long-running positions on the New York TimesWall Street Journal and Business Week best seller lists. Here he discusses how to tell when new hires are qualified for the job.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Positive Leadership: Take Responsibility For Your Own Leadership Development

An interview with Joseph L. Bower, Professor, Harvard Business School. 

To become an effective CEO, work for companies committed to leadership development, and take responsibility for your own development on the job.


Monday, April 18, 2011

Positive Leadership: Too Big to Innovate

AOL co-founder Steve Case talks about the "attacker" spirit of start-ups and the challenge of playing "defence" at a big company. 


Sunday, April 17, 2011

Positive Leadership: Malcolm Gladwell on Talent

In his latest work, best-selling author Malcolm Gladwell takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of Outliers: The Story of Success—the best and the brightest, the most famous and the most successful people and asks the question: Why are high achievers different from regular people? Along the way he explains the secrets of software billionaires, what it takes to be a great soccer player, the cultural forces that make Asians so successful at math and what made the Beatles the greatest rock band.


Saturday, April 16, 2011

Positive Leadership vs Bad Leadership

Barbara Kellerman, the James MacGregor Burns Lecturer in Public Leadership at Harvard Kennedy School, discusses the theme of her latest work entitled Bad Leadership: What It Is, How It Happens, Why It Matters (Leadership for the Common Good):


Friday, April 15, 2011

Positive Leadership: Rory Shows Resilience and Bouncebackability!

The sporting story of the past week was undoubtedly the implosion of Rory McIlroy at the US Masters Golf. 

Having led the tournament for three rounds he dropped 8 shots in less than 10 holes to finish well behind the eventual winner Charl Schwartzel.  It was a classic lesson in the effects of pressure on performance – as the realisation that he could actually win the thing ultimately became his undoing.

After the second round all the talk was about how Rory would be the youngest winner since Tiger Woods at 21 years of age - but after he so spectacularly failed to win it, should we also blame his age for his inability to handle the pressure?  Well it didn’t stop Woods, but there’s no doubt that a few grey hairs and the experience of having ‘been there before’ makes an enormous difference when it comes to the crunch.  You can’t simulate that in training – it very often comes down to experience, focus and pure desire.

The good news is that Rory is already showing the kind of resilient response that he’ll need to bounce back from this disappointment and turn it into the kind of learning that could fuel his future success. 

Immediately after he finished he tweeted:
“Well that wasn’t the plan! Found it tough going today, but you have to lose before you can win. This day will make me stronger in the end.”

Here he clearly shows that he’s got things in perspective – the humour is definitely a good sign!  He is already able to attribute the failure as a one-off and something from which he will build confidence and experience.  After two rounds in this week’s Malaysian Open – a 10,000 mile trip through 12 time zones – McIlroy is joint leader of the tournament on 11 under par!!

So watch this space – this is the mentality of a future champion!


Positive Leadership: Follow Your Own Truth

Meaning is not something a leader stumbles across, like the answer to a riddle or the prize in the lottery. Meaning is something you build into your life. You build it out of your own self-understanding. You find it in your past, in your passions, affections and loyalties, out of your innate talents and gifts, out of what you believe is true; out of the people you love, out of the values for which you are willing to sacrifice something. The ingredients are there. You are the only one who can put them together into that unique pattern that will be your life. You can learn from others and benefit from their wisdom but in the end, your life is your own. Only you are responsible for the choices and decisions you make in life.  Let it be a life that has dignity, elegance and meaning. Find your own truth and become the captain of your soul.


Thursday, April 14, 2011

Positive Leadership: Hard Work beats Talent

Journalist and former table tennis champion Matthew Syed (author of Bounce : How Champions are Made ) argues that academic research has ruled out the idea of innate talent.


Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Positive Leadership: Resilience

As Rory McIlroy admits he'll find it hard to forget his recent Masters nightmare, Matthew Syed, author of Bounce : How Champions are Made explains why the young player can recover.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Positive Leadership for the 21st Century

Harvard Business School Alumni Achievement Award recipients discuss the financial crisis, the changing relationship between business and government, and the key elements of effective leadership.

John Doerr Partner, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers;
Jeffrey R. Immelt Chairman, GE;
Anand G. Mahindra Vice Chairman & Managing Director, Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd.;
Meg Whitman Former President & CEO, eBay;
James D. Wolfensohn Chairman, Wolfensohn & Company LLC.


Monday, April 11, 2011

Games Promoting Positive Leadership

How can games influence middle-level managers in their work? Byron Reeves, founder of Media X at Stanford, discusses an IBM sponsored study on how a game such as World of Warcraft can foster leadership skills. Listen to his groundbreaking findings.


Sunday, April 10, 2011

Positive Leadership: Supporting Change

A good rule to remember when it comes to relationships is, “What you see is what you get.” If we want to form lasting relationships with others, we must start by being happy with who the other person is. It is courting disaster when you bring thoughtless or angry people into your life assuming that under your influence they will change.

You see, what’s likely to happen is you will change your behaviour to accommodate them, rather than the other way around. Change is not something we can force on other people. Change comes from within. And, when people are pushed from outside forces, they push back.

If, in major ways, the people in our lives are not what we think they should be, nagging them or manipulations designed to get them to change is not the way to go. Change will never happen if we are certain we are always right, or if we believe that the fault lies always with the other person. Perhaps if we were to allow them the dignity of being who they are without our criticism, we might find change happening naturally of its own accord. 

One thing is certain. When we give up blaming and criticising, our relationships with others improve enormously. So does their self-esteem and feelings of competence. You see, we can help others to change, and support their own change efforts, but it’s just not helpful to try to choose their direction for them.


Saturday, April 09, 2011

Positive Leadership: SuperCorp: How Companies Create Innovation, Profits, and Social Good

In this talk, Harvard Professor, Rosabeth Moss Kanter discusses key insights that follow from a three-and-a-half year investigation that served as the basis of her recent book SuperCorp: How Vanguard Companies Create Innovation, Profits, Growth, and Social Good. She argues that there are strong potential synergies between financial performance and attention to community and social needs. By embracing values and focusing on the world outside the organisation, companies can gain competitive advantage while responding to social problems.

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Friday, April 08, 2011

Positive Leadership: Integrity

Peter Shergold, Macquarie Group Foundation Professor, talks about the characteristics of bring a great leader.


Thursday, April 07, 2011

Positive Leadership: Desired Traits for 'Good' Managers Revealed

Employees in Australasia now think trustworthiness and openness are the most important characteristic of a good manager.

Compared to this time last year, trustworthiness and openness has jumped from seventh to number one on the Top Ten Characteristics of a Good Manager list generated by Leadership Management Australasia (LMA).

The list has been drawn from LMA's late November 2010 L.E.A.D. (Leadership, Education and Direction) Survey of 3,000 employees across Australia and New Zealand, conducted by Chase Research*. The on-going L.E.A.D. Survey, which monitors workplace issues across all major sectors, has been running for 10 years.

This new perspective on the characteristics of a good manager is echoed in the growing importance of managers giving their people the space to do their work and supporting them at the same time (up from 5th to equal 2nd), and providing the resources employees need to do their job (up from equal 11th to equal 7th).

Characteristics of good managers - November 2010
 A person's working relationship with their immediate manager or managers, with whom they have frequent contact, can have a significant impact on their performance and satisfaction in their role. What would you say are the top five most important characteristics for a good manager to have, in order to positively influence your performance in your role at work?


Characteristics of good managers (employee view)
Rank 2009
Rank 2010
Is trustworthy and open in approach
Clearly communicates where we are going
Gives me the space to do my own work, but supports me
Listens to and respects my input into decisions
Gives regular and honest feedback on how I am going
Is fair and even handed/makes reasonable demands
Provides the resources I need to do my job
Recognises me for extra efforts/results
Coaches and develops me
Trusts me with challenging work

* 14% of the respondents were from New Zealand yielding the same results


Wednesday, April 06, 2011

Positive Leadership: 3 Steps to Building a Better Top Team

When a top team fails to function, it can paralyse a whole company. Here’s what CEOs need to watch out for:

  1. Getting the right people on the team . . . and the wrong ones off.
  2. Making sure the top team does just the work only it can do.
  3. Addressing team dynamics and processes.


Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Positive Leadership: 9 Things Successful People Do Differently

Heidi Grant Halvorson, Ph.D. is a motivational psychologist, and author of the new book Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals

Here is what she has to say about the nine things successful people do differently:

‘Why have you been so successful in reaching some of your goals, but not others? If you aren't sure, you are far from alone in your confusion. It turns out that even brilliant, highly accomplished people are pretty lousy when it comes to understanding why they succeed or fail. The intuitive answer — that you are born predisposed to certain talents and lacking in others — is really just one small piece of the puzzle. 

In fact, decades of research on achievement suggests that successful people reach their goals not simply because of who they are, but more often because of what they do:
  1. Get specific.
  2. Seize the moment to act on your goals.
  3. Know exactly how far you have left to go.
  4. Be a realistic optimist.
  5. Focus on getting better, rather than being good.
  6. Have grit.
  7. Build your willpower muscle.
  8. Don't tempt fate.
  9. Focus on what you will do, not what you won't do.'


Monday, April 04, 2011

Positive Leadership: Wishing Someone Luck Can Improve Performance

Activating a positive superstitious belief can boost people's confidence, which in turn improves performance.

In an experiment, a dexterity task that normally took more than 5 minutes was accomplished in just 191.5 seconds, on average, if participants were wished good luck before they started it, according to research led by Lysann Damisch of the University of Cologne in Germany. Before trying to roll 36 little balls into little holes in a transparent plastic cube, the participants were told by a researcher, "I press the thumbs for you," the German equivalent of "My fingers are crossed for you." 


Sunday, April 03, 2011

Positive Leadership: Building Your Emotional Well-Being

Three Blessings™ is designed to increase your life satisfaction and to sweeten your memories about the past. It has been determined in well-designed research studies that becoming much more conscious of good events reliably increases happiness and decreases depression.

'The secret of happiness is to count your blessings while others are adding up their troubles.' William Penn 


Saturday, April 02, 2011

Positive Leadership: Next Generation Leadership

Here's an interesting video from a panel discussion on "Next Generation Leadership." The panel included David Gergen, executive director of the Harvard Centre for Public Leadership; Rosalinde Torres, managing director of the Boston Consulting Group; Betsy Myers, leadership advisor and former chief operating officer for the Obama campaign; and Harvard Professor Bill George. It was moderated by George Leadership Fellow John Coleman who was in his final year of the joint degree program of Harvard Business School and Harvard Kennedy School.


Positive Leadership: Impossible?


Friday, April 01, 2011

Positive Leadership: How Effective Leaders Adjust Their Focus

Rosabeth Moss Kanter, Harvard Business School professor, explains why executives must constantly consider both the big picture and the details.