A few years back, Daniel Goleman introduced the concept of Emotional Intelligence as an essential foundation for effective leadership. It was one of those ideas that met with instant recognition as spot on. But just as quickly – in just a matter of a few years, it fell out of favor, mostly because of two things: 1. The materials associated were all about brain chemistry and of little relevance to the act of leading, and, 2. There was an assumption that all of us humans come equipped with a handy, dandy encyclopedia of emotions that one need only be aware of and lea… Read More >
These are tough times and tough times require more than buckle-down tough measures – they demand new and creative responses. But often when faced with this demand, we seem to draw a blank. It is as though the nature of organizations and building better business practices are orthogonal to innovation and creativity. In coaching we note that the use of creativity is one of the more difficult skills to develop – almost as if one is either born with it or not! Yet even Howard Gardner lists the creative mind as one of the five essential “minds” for survival in his… Read More >
We coaches often draw analogies from the sports world, and this is one of those rich ones – so rich, in fact, that it made it into the Wall Street Journal! The actual football issue – that of making a late-in-the-game 4th and 2 decision to go for it - is not important. But what the authors, Everson and Albergotti, explain is that the uproar over Coach Bill Belichick’s decision seems to be based in a wave of conservatism that has our coun… Read More >
Last week I gave a lecture at the Sloan Business School of MIT on the topic of rapid assimilation into a leadership or management position. Throughout the talk I fielded questions on disharmony and disagreements – the thought being that if one has done a good job selecting and interviewing, there should be a lowered probability of problems. At one point I even asked the audience how many people had the experience of being hired for a job and finding out after the fact that either the job had radically changed or that there were some deep dark, and untold secrets that had not b… Read More >
Our culture, it seems to me, is suffering under a grand illusion that we have a choice we can make, and that in making that choice, we have somehow exerted our individual executive power. This illusion is both confirmed and perpetuated by the ever-increasing plethora of alternatives from which to choose. We believe that having a greater selection gives us greater range and thus more freedom in choice, and that having those, we will increase our overall satisfaction.
Both, in fact, are not only wrong but the complete opposite of what actually occurs. In Barry Schwartz’s… Read More >
Most of the work of coaching and of coaches is asking good questions. However, the problem is that in an age of instant answers (Wikipedia, Google and Bing!), most folks have lost an appreciation for questions. We, in fact, think that not only should all questions be instantly answered, they all must have an answer – all information is knowable and accessible. And so big questions – the really good ones you ponder – have fallen out of grace.