Category Archives: Thoughts

To Enhance Productivity, Stop Doing Something!

Guest post from Willy Steiner:
 
It was recently announced that the national unemployment rate went down to 6.1%. I was an Economics minor in college, many moons ago, and full employment was considered to be around 6%. By the time the Dot-com boom hit its peak in 2000, full employment was thought to be closer to 4%. I never got the memo as to when they made that change but it seemed to make sense given the hubris of the times and how wealthy many Internet startups made their founders.

 

How to Tell a Great Story

We tell stories to our coworkers and peers all the time — to persuade someone to support our project, to explain to an employee how he might improve, or to inspire a team that is facing challenges. It’s an essential skill, but what makes a compelling story in a business context? And how can you improve your ability to tell stories that persuade?

What the Experts Say
In our information-saturated age, business leaders “won’t be heard unless they’re telling stories,” says Nick Morgan, author of Power Cues and president and founder of Public Words, a communications consulting firm. “Facts and figures and all the rational things that we think are important in the business world actually don’t stick in our minds at all,” he says. But stories create “sticky” memories by attaching emotions to things that happen. That means leaders who can create and share good stories have a powerful advantage over others. And fortunately, everyone has the ability to become a better storyteller. We are programmed through our evolutionary biology to be both consumers and creators of story,” says Jonah Sachs, CEO of Free Range Studios and author of Winning the Story Wars. “It certainly can be taught and learned.” Here’s how to use storytelling to your benefit.

Start with a message
Every storytelling exercise should begin by asking: Who is my audience and what is the message I want to share with them? Each decision about your story should flow from those questions. Sachs says that leaders should ask, “What is the core moral that I’m trying to implant in my team?” and “How can I boil that down to a compelling single statement?” For instance, if your team is behaving as if failure is not an option, you might decide to impart the message that failure is actually the grandfather of success. Or if you are trying to convince senior leaders to take a risk by supporting your project, you could convey that most companies are built on taking smart chances. First settle on your ultimate message; then you can figure out the best way to illustrate it.

Leading People Toward Influence – The ABCD’s of Trust

Leadership is an influence process. Whenever you try to influence the beliefs or behaviors of another person, you are engaging in leadership. By this definition we are all leaders in some form or fashion. Understanding Basic Leadership Roles Q: Are you a parent? You’re trying to lead your children. Q: Are you a sports coach? … … Continue reading
Linked 2 Leadership

10 Magic Phrases That Will Make You a Better Leader

This post was recently appeared at SmartBlog on Leadership:
 
Want to be a better leader? Then try improving your vocabulary. No, I’m not talking adding the latest management and leadership buzzwords or jargon to your repertoire. If that’s what you’re looking for, try the Wall Street Journal’s Business Buzzwords Generator. You’ll be able to walk around uttering leadership gibberish such as Moving forward, it’s time to act with strategic vector and transform our team bandwidth”, and “Looking forward to 2014, ideation will be key to our ability to impact the solutions holistically.”

The easy ride

We know what you want to accomplish. We know how you’d like everything to turn out.

The real question is, “what are you willing to push through the dip for?” What are you willing to stand up for, bleed for, commit to and generally be unreasonable about?

Because that’s what’s going to actually get done.

The One Important Thing That Can Make or Break You as a Leader

Leaders Must Take Time To Think

There are leaders and then there are LEADERS. What kind of leader you are depends on how you use your time. Are you spending it running from place to place and keeping your head just above water? Or are you spending it strategically?

What one thing can make or break you as a leader? It is the process of observing, listening and reflecting. Leaders need time to think.

The Coming End of Corporate Charity, and How Companies Should Prepare

The end of corporations giving money to charities and getting nothing in return is close at hand. As the pressure to quantify all results intensifies, businesses are finding that the most meaningful social change happens when they stick to the business of business. This is evident in the way corporate social
Forbes – Leadership