Is your time at the helm of your business running out?

We need to be prepared and to have considered our options in the event our lives change unexpectedly

Is your time at the helm of your business running out?What would happen if you had to sell your business this week due to illness? A man recently contacted me because his doctors told him that due to an illness, he had to stop working immediately. The problem was that he owned a business. How, he asked, could he comply with his doctors’ orders and…

A strong leader understands employee behaviours

Understanding, analyzing and dealing intelligently with employee behaviours is a key to good leadership, increased productivity and higher profit

A strong leader understands employee behavioursAmerican actress Mae West is quoted as saying, "The best way to behave is to misbehave." That may have worked for Mae West, but it won't work on the job. Most companies want behaviour that inspires productivity, performance and, of course, profit. Behaviour can be broken into five categories: 1. Behaviour is observable. An employee…

Are you listening to the wrong people? 

How to reduce the chances of making a decision you’ll regret somewhere down the road

Are you listening to the wrong people? A recent column of mine was inspired by the political maelstrom created by the SNC-Lavalin affair. A month has passed, the storm continues to swirl, and I’m inspired again to draw on this situation as a leadership learning opportunity. There have been no shortage of ‘What were they thinking?’ moments as this scandal has unfolded,…

Great leaders share similar traits

While theories abound about what makes great leaders, they do share common traits

Great leaders share similar traitsThousands of books have been published about leadership because millions of people have fantasies of being top dog. Former presidents, prominent military leaders, CEOs, academics and consultants of every stripe have written books about what it takes to be an exceptional leader. It's worth finding out. While theories abound about what makes a great leader,…

Three traits define extraordinary leadership

True leaders possess what is identified as the following three intangibles of leadership: will, fortitude and self-efficacy

Three traits define extraordinary leadershipLeadership is one of those mysterious intangibles pundits have yet to get their hands around.  Considering the number of books and articles written about the subject, it's doubtful that it will ever be satisfactorily explained. Nevertheless, new insights keep coming. Why do certain CEOs relish taking on challenges that have literally ended the careers of…

Improving the odds of athletic success

Ron Wuotila of RW Sport Performance Consulting talks about the importance of leadership, commitment to detail, discipline and belief

Improving the odds of athletic successRon Wuotila is president at RW Sport Performance Consulting. What is RW Sport Performance Consulting and what do you do? Wuotila: I help high-performance sport organizations, coaches and leaders get better. Much of my consulting work with organizations focuses on assessment and healthy reflection as a means to ensure that they have the right strategies,…

Collaborative leadership from A to Z

No leader, regardless of how brilliant and talented, is smarter than the collective genius of the workforce

Collaborative leadership from A to ZCollaboration has become an essential ingredient for organizational success (perhaps even survival). And as organizations move toward more collaborative cultures, a new leadership model is emerging. That leadership model replaces command and control with trust and inclusion. The leader’s role is to encourage team members to see themselves as valued contributors, to help them build…

New generation of women find their voices in politics

They have a history of grassroots social activism and community involvement, and it serves us all well

New generation of women find their voices in politicsAngela Merkel has announced that this will be her last term as German chancellor. This has created some concern, as many credit her with navigating her country, the European Union and even the global community through many stormy waters in recent years. When we look around the world, however, we see that there is no…

Think leadership is logical? Think again

Think again. No one makes decisions based on pure logic

Think leadership is logical? Think againI once asked the CEO of a technology company how his employees were dealing with a proposed change. “We’ve presented all the facts,” he replied. “But it would be much easier if people weren’t so emotional!” In the business world, we are taught to approach organizational challenges objectively and logically. We quantify everything we can…

Why some people lead while most choose to follow

10 recommendations for a modern leader-follower relationship

Why some people lead while most choose to followIf you don't have followers then, let's face it, you are not leading (regardless of your title). Naturally Selected: The Evolutionary Science of Leadership, first published in 2011. seeks to answer the question of not only why some people lead but why most choose to follow. Taking an anthropological view of leadership styles through modern…

The biggest mistake most small business owners make

We need to develop systems of hiring and monitoring our employees to ensure we have the right people

The biggest mistake most small business owners makeBob was frustrated, stressed and upset. One of his key employees, Keith, had just left to start his own business and had taken another staff member with him. I wasn’t surprised. I’d been working with Bob for several months and had met Keith several times. My impression wasn’t favourable and I had discussed this with…

Adding the human element to virtual communication

From email to phone calls to video conferencing, how to manage what you project to make the best leadership impression

Adding the human element to virtual communicationBeing perceived as a leader is the essence of leadership presence. While most of my coaching focuses on helping leaders enhance their presence in face-to-face encounters, I also realize that a different set of skills is required for projecting leadership presence when communicating virtually. Communication mediums run a spectrum from lean to rich. A lean…

Take your values off the walls and display them in the halls

Values must be integrated into processes, policies and organizational behaviour before they become tangible

Take your values off the walls and display them in the hallsA sales manager read an article about his company’s refusal to deal with any country where under-the-table money was part of the negotiation process. He circled the article and wrote the words “Right on!” in the column, and mailed it to his CEO. The attached note said: “I’m proud to work in a company whose…

Tom Higgins: leadership truths from football to business

The CEO of the Canadian Football Academy talks about why team building, leadership and motivation are so important

Tom Higgins: leadership truths from football to businessTom Higgins is CEO of the Canadian Football Academy and a former coach in the Canadian Football League. What is the Canadian Football Academy and what does it do? Higgins: The CFA was born of an idea between me and Tony Fasano. We wanted to promote youth football in a positive, safe and skilful way.…

Creating The Next Face of (business) Leadership

Ann Marie MacDougall of LeaderBoom talks about preparing the next generation for the high-pressure global business arena

Creating The Next Face of (business) LeadershipAnn Marie MacDougall is president of LeaderBoom Inc. What is LeaderBoom and why was it created? MacDougall: LeaderBoom is a results-oriented firm launched in 2012 that provides just-in-time customized leadership development programs and advisory services designed to empower and accelerate performance in individuals, teams, organizations, and communities. We do this by integrating fresh insights mined through…
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