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5 Common Questions Leaders Should Never Ask

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   July 02, 2014

1. What’s the problem? Company leaders may often find themselves asking this question or some variation of it. “What’s the problem, what’s going wrong, what is broken, what is our biggest threat — that is, unfortunately, the starting point of 80 percent of meetings in management,” Cooperrider says. But he maintains that if a company leader asks questions that are focused on problems and weaknesses, then the organization overall will tend to be fixated on that — rather than focusing on strengths and opportunities. 2. Whose fault is it? A better approach would be to ask, How can we work together to shore up any weaknesses? That identifies weak links […]

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Ways to Express Remarkable Boldness

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   July 27, 2014

1. Give and serve. Servants achieve the deepest results. Be more bold about your giving than your getting. 2. Point out things that aren’t working. Every problem you tiptoe around caps your organization. Successful leaders say what everyone knows, but is afraid to name. 3. Plan. Boldness without planning is foolish. 4. Prepare. 5. Execute. Everything worth doing is worth doing boldly. 6. Call people to engage in meaningful service. 7. Eliminate teammates who persistently drain colleagues and teams, even if they deliver results. 8. Expect others to step up until they prove they won’t. 9. Express your heart. 10. Listen to frustrations, yours and theirs. 11. Follow curiosity. 12. […]

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Overhauling How We Teach Leadership

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   July 28, 2014

The public long has lamented the state of “leadership” in America, referring often to a deficit in political or business leadership. Scandals like the ones with Bernie Madoff and David Petraeus year after year confirm our sense that we should find better leaders. The question is, how best to do so? When we conflate ethical leadership with ethical leaders, we spend too much time bemoaning the fact that our leaders aren’t all really good people. Instead, we need to spend more time looking at whether we have good norms for choosing our leaders and holding them accountable, and good processes from which leadership emerges and functions ethically. It’s time for […]

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The 10 Leadership Lessons We Can all Learn from Giraffes

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   June 20, 2014

1. Giraffes stick their neck out: They display their strengths, expose their vulnerabilities and take informed risks to survive and thrive. We should do the same when we are acting alone or as part of a team to demonstrate our own leadership capabilities. 2. Giraffes stand tall: They take advantage of their natural attributes to establish a commanding presence. Each of us has some sort of advantage in each situation; it is our job to find it and use it. This approach focuses on our positives rather than creating false confidence from others’ weaknesses. 3. Giraffes use their natural camouflage: They blend in to allow the environment to work for […]

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Fund Investors: Focus on Stewardship

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   July 27, 2014

Among fund selectors, and even on occasion among media, an undue focus on past performance, particularly short-term past performance, is all too common. This is understandable to an extent—performance is the one concrete metric by which advisers will be held to account by their clients. Unfortunately for investors and advisers relying on it, past performance is not a particularly accurate indicator of future results.  

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What Great Leadership Training Does Now That It Didn’t 10 Years Ago

don@3ethos   •   carousel-post   •   August 02, 2014

  To evolve as leaders, managers have to internalize the idea that leadership is fundamentally different from managing tasks. Being a great leader means both managing tasks and functions well, but also understanding how to behave and “show up” as a leader. It can be hard to grasp for some, but it can be learned. It surprises me how many training programs exist in a vacuum. They might focus on training on specific skills like time-management, budgeting and coaching, for example, but they incorporate very little business context into the design of their programs, and they measure metrics such as “usage,” rather than real business impact. Top-level training organizations move […]

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