Leaders Know that True Kindness Beats Niceness

I live in Iowa, and a term that gets floated a lot is “Iowa Nice.” As time goes on, though, it gets used ironically as much as it gets used sincerely. I think that’s because “Nice” doesn’t always equal “Kind.” Some leaders need to be reminded that giving positive you’re-on-the-right-track feedback is important and motivating. … Read more

Leaders Value Human Interaction

One of my favorite management experts, Mark Horstman of Manager Tools, likes to say, “Email is for the convenience of the sender.” In The Advantage, Patrick Lencioni advocates “cascading communication.” The idea is simple. Members of the executive team agree on a common and consistent set of messages that they will in turn communicate to … Read more

Leaders Champion Inclusion and Diversity

Miriam de Dios offered up a challenge to all of us back at “90 Ideas in 90 Minutes” in September: Champion Inclusion That seems like a no-brainer—anyone who studies organizational effectiveness and community development knows that diversity and inclusion make for stronger teams, organizations, and communities. But Miriam offered a couple angles we hadn’t considered. Oftentimes, … 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 Develop Everyone

At the Business Record’s “90 Ideas in 90 Minutes” event from September 2017, Miriam De Dios of Coopera made a case for organizations of any size to implement “Personal Development Plans for All.” Most organizations do some kind of development plan for people in, or preparing for, leadership roles. But what if everyone had a plan? People on … Read more

Things Successful Leaders Avoid Saying (Part 10)

Successful leaders avoid this phrase:

“I need you to…”

Although this is a common way for leaders to assign tasks, it is poor wording for these reasons:

It turns servant leadership upside down; leaders are supposed to meet the needs of others, not to seek to have their own needs met.