Most of my readers and podcast listeners are doing what they are doing because they want to have an impact on the world around them. But often times, they they wakeup to discover that they are far from where they intended to be.
Whenever an organization rolls out a major change, clarity and alignment are essential. Without those two things all the best intentions amount to little more than heartburn and headaches.
As a leader responsible for a large company, I have experienced the difficulty of getting clarity and creating alignment with my team. In one instance, we shuttered more than a dozen division of our publishing operation and restructured the entire business.
But I’ve also found myself on the other side of things—outside of the leadership seat and in the role of observer. Only in this case people were making decisions about my brand!
Welcome to the new season of This Is Your Life. In this first episode, Michele Cushatt, my new co-host, and I talk about why I decided to change my podcast so dramatically and what you can learn about leadership from our experience.
Many people talk about the value of collaboration, but in this episode, we get very specific about why you must collaborate with others if you are going to reach your potential as a leader. We also discuss how it benefits those you hope to influence.
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When I set out to publish my first book, I didn’t get one rejection letter. I got twenty-nine.
I know it all too well: if you’re an aspiring author, nobody is going to hand you your success on a silver tray with a little cherry on top.
When we think of leaders from America’s revolutionary era, our minds jump to military commanders like George Washington, political organizers like Samuel Adams, and rousing orators like Patrick Henry. In the hierarchy of the Revolution, these men stand atop the loftiest rungs. For good reason.
These men accomplished amazing feats against incredible odds. But they could not have done it alone. Like executives in a successful company, they required the service and sacrifice of others to achieve their goals. They required effective lieutenants—people like Paul Revere.
I’ve worked with several executive assistants over the years, and I have found it is a make-or-break relationship when it comes to my success.
Think about it: None of us can do it all on our own. We need to bring others into our work to help us succeed in it. And the bigger the dream, the more help we usually need.
As a leader, are you investing your best resources in the wrong people? It is easy to see other people making this mistake. It is more difficult to catch yourself doing it.
I’ve been guilty plenty of times. Leaders often make this same mistake in various areas of their lives, but what can you do if you are in this situation?
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When I started out in my career, the key to success was having the right answers. Those who advanced in their careers the quickest were seemingly the ones who had the most answers.
While this is definitely important in some situations—especially when responding to the people you are accountable to—it is not the key to success as a leader. There is something even more important than having the right answers.
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I have had over twenty bosses in my career. One was great, most were average, and more than a few were downright terrible. Surprisingly, I learned the most from the bad ones.
The problem is that the bad bosses make you so miserable, sometimes you fail to appreciate how much you are learning. While I wouldn’t want to work for those bosses again, I wouldn’t trade what they taught me—even if it was unintentional.
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Remember when you used to actually enjoy blogging, back before it became something you dreaded? Back then, sharing your message was all that mattered, and you couldn’t wait to get the word out, hoping to impact others with your story. But then something got in the way.
I know the drill. Here’s how it happened to me.
Recently, my wife bought me a Labradoodle puppy. I had wanted one ever since my daughter got hers. My grandson named him “Charlie Brown,” since his fur was a beautiful chocolate brown color.
Though he was born in January, we didn’t get to meet Charlie until last week. He spent the first eleven weeks at the breeder with his mother and siblings. Then he went straight to a trainer for “Companion Training.” (Yes, we believe in outsourcing!)