Leaders Pay it Forward

At 90 Ideas, Tej Dhawan started off with a key idea: Give first. He was mostly talking about the ethic in the start-up community, how entrepreneurs help each other out as a habit. A great Iowa example is EntreFest, an annual program for entrepreneurs with dozens of sessions led, pro bono, by entrepreneurs who are … Read more

Leaders Measure More than the Average

When Mary Coffin of Wells Fargo spoke at September’s 90 Ideas event, she shared this nugget: Measure more than the average. She pointed out that when we take measurements, we do a lot of looking at trends and averages and norms to make decisions. But averages only tell us so much. We also need to … Read more

Leaders have Fun

I have a tradition—the Tuesday before Thanksgiving my friend Matt Pries  and I engage in the Annual Night of Gluttony. Click here to view a presentation I did on the tradition. We want to grow old staying young, and maintain our connection with each other in the midst of our busyness.  This tradition helps. The … Read more

Leaders Ask “Does it Need to be Said?”

I’ve heard a few versions of “Ask yourself if it needs to be said” before speaking out loud. When I heard Kristi Knous speak recently at the 90 Ideas event, I appreciated her 3 questions for leaders before speaking. I wrote Kristi, as I wanted to get her words just right, and she graciously emailed … Read more

Leaders Address Sarcasm During Conflict

Sarcasm has no place in effective leadership. That’s not the most popular thing I’ve said, but it needs to be said frequently. It’s personally frustrating, because sarcasm has been a big part of my sense of humor most of my life. But it’s gotten me into trouble at least as often as it’s gotten me … Read more

Leaders Exchange Perspectives

People who exchange perspectives tend to encourage dialogue around new ideas and information. In a dysfunctional situation, a leader may do the opposite; present information without room for discussion. I was part of a team once that had to select chaperones for an international youth trip. The chairman explained exactly how the selection had been made … Read more