Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Leadership and Management’ Category

EPExecutive Presence by Sylvia Ann Hewlett is a guide for leaders seeking to achieve the top level of success in their respective fields. While actual talent, training, and proven abilities are important factors in whether someone is successful or not, there are also some intangible qualities that all people who have achieved success have managed to perfect. These qualities are just as essential to master, yet many people are oblivious to their importance. Executive presence (EP) is the unknown quality that some people appear to have and others do not. Luckily, most of the elements of EP can be learned.

The three main pillars of executive presence are:

  1. Gravitas: All aspects of a person’s behavior. Leaders with strong gravitas exude confidence, decisiveness, integrity, emotional intelligence, reputation, and vision.
  2. Communication: How a person talks, including formal presentation skills. Top communication traits include superior speaking skills, the ability to command a room, forcefulness, the ability to read people, a sense of humor, and body language.
  3. Appearance: How a person looks. It is important for leaders to be well groomed, be physically fit, and wear simple, stylish clothing.

To learn more, please visit http://www.bizsum.com

Read Full Post »

No-Drama LeadershipA lack of leadership results in problematic work behaviors, such as poor performance and absenteeism. Unless supervisors take responsibility for good workplace relationships, their companies’ cultures will suffer. The problems start when employees are promoted to leadership positions without the necessary skills and training, which can lead to workplace drama. In No-Drama Leadership, Marlene Chism presents a new model where everyone is a leader–from frontline employees to CEOs. This encourages people at all levels to learn from one another and become more aligned, aware, and accountable.

According to Chism:

  • Supervisors and managers are often the cause of poor employee performance, absenteeism, and turnover. In many cases, they are promoted into positions of responsibility without any leadership training.
  • Leaders must align their companies’ values with their own. Without alignment, they will lack awareness and accountability for the people they manage.
  • Self-awareness is a start, but leaders must also be aware of other people and cultures.
  • Responsible leaders take ownership of situations and are accountable for doing what is required.
  • Decisions are frequently made by leaders without regard for how they may impact others. Good leaders see both the short- and long-term impacts of their decisions.
  • Communication is important to any technical training a company may require. Without good communication skills, drama can result both inside and outside the company.
  • When employees have some control over, or at least an understanding of, the changes happening within their work environments, they are less inclined to resist them.
  • Enlightened leaders address issues immediately and correct course as needed, rather than hoping problems will simply go away.
  • Leaders must put time and effort into understanding their employees to ensure engagement happens in a positive way.

To learn more, please visit http://www.bizsum.com

Read Full Post »

How Great Leaders ThinkThe distinction between a great leader and one who suffers through a difficult, short tenure has much to do with how the person sees both the world and his or her organization. In How Great Leaders Think, Lee G. Bolman and Terrence E. Deal provide tales of successful leaders—including Lou Gerstner of IBM, Anne Mulcahy of Xerox, and Howard Schultz of Starbucks—to show how they brought new views to the organizations they led and were able to navigate the structure, people, politics, and culture of their companies. Great leaders use a variety of viewpoints, based on their personal histories, worldviews, and experiences, to see their organizations for what they really are and understand how they need to get to the next stage.

According to the authors:

  • Good leadership requires reframing. New leaders who step in with a narrow mind will not go far in their new roles. They need to be able to step back and see the organization from a variety of perspectives.
  • Adaptability is a common thread of great leaders. Executives who insist on their way or the highway, who do not adapt to the organization they are leading with all its quirks and cultural differences from places they have previously worked, will have short tenures.
  • The structure of an organization deserves significant attention. The social architecture of a business is a critical component and should be given its due.
  • Great leaders have self-awareness. Weak managers do not realize how they are perceived. They get caught in hypocrisy and believe no one is listening to them. If they were more aware of how they came across, they could adjust how they communicate and make more progress with those around them.
  • To be heard, leaders need to listen. By reaching out to employees and customers and hearing what they have to say, leaders can connect with the realities that are unique to the company and come up with helpful, practical recommendations.
  • Politics is not a bad thing. Building relationships and networking are critical activities for leaders who need to navigate their way around a company. They need allies to get projects done and to carry through strategies.
  • Employees look to their leaders for magic. Great leaders are able to tap into the core of the company culture and pull out surprises that appear like magic, although they actually are based on the leaders’ years of experience and well-crafted worldview.
  • Reframing takes practice. Leaders need to see the world they live in through various lenses, but that is something that takes time to learn and may require the help of others who can provide different perspectives.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Read Full Post »

A Team of LeadersIn today’s business world it is challenging for companies to both deal with problems and changes internally and at the same time be productive and competitive in the marketplace. In A Team of Leaders, Paul Gustavson and Stewart Liff show readers how to create an environment where everyone is a leader. The lives of team leaders or supervisors can be fraught with frustration, as pressure is exerted on them from both the top and the bottom, as well as from the public who use their companies’ products or services. Some companies seek to lessen this stress by adopting team environments, which can be helpful but still puts leaders at the top of these teams. Building teams of leaders, however, replaces the supervisor-employee relationship with teams that eventually manage themselves.

The authors provide the following advice to readers:

  • The amount of involvement and interest a work force generally projects is relevant to how leader-focused that group is designed to be. Companies need to evaluate where their teams are. Teams possess a greater sense of ownership when all members have input and are equally informed about what is going on.
  • Different designs create different teams. The way teams are designed will predict the way they look and behave. Companies’ structures and management systems should be closely aligned with their overall strategies to begin with, which makes it easier for teams to have common visions and purposes.
  • Within teams, the goal is for everyone to be leaders. Each employee should have an individual development plan and recognition for accomplishments, and in this way all employees will be able to foresee future actions and promotions within the teams.
  • Leaders want to be contributors. Leadership is encouraged when each member of the team knows exactly what his or her contribution is to the overall mission. Regular feedback about the progress the team is making and how it is contributing to the overall goals of the company is extremely helpful.
  • Knowledge management is important and multi-faceted. Teams need to have data and information, but also knowledge about procedures, policies and other organizational materials, in addition to working knowledge of the values and beliefs of their companies. Each member should master the skills needed to perform his or her own functions and have a general idea of what others do to contribute.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Read Full Post »

The Next Gen LeaderIn The Next Gen Leader, Robert C. McMillan argues that everyone is a leader and should be recognized as such if organizations are to succeed and excel in today’s dynamic, competitive marketplace. Acting as a leadership coach, McMillan provides a complete 6G Leadership System to enable emerging, aspiring, and executive leaders to maximize their potential and become transformational leaders. He identifies six generations of leadership and discusses the attitudes and states of mind that are required to operate successfully at each leadership level.

McMillan offers readers the following advice:

  • Despite different experiences and different career journeys, everyone can be a leader. The 6G Leadership System provides a tracking system to identify where people are and offers a pathway forward to enable people to become transformational leaders.
  • Leadership is a choice, not a position. Individuals should choose to lead, regardless of their positions in the hierarchy, and organizations should create environments where everyone is encouraged to lead.
  • To truly maximize leadership potential, people must first have universal balance in their lives. They can evaluate this balance and improve it by exploring six life applications, which assess faith, moral purpose, intellect, self-awareness, relationships, and wealth (financial and health).
  • Every aspiring leader needs to understand the Six Senses of Leadership (seeing, hearing, tasting, smelling, touching, and kinesthetic) are critical in order to become a leader of significance. These senses yield awareness that one is a leader, regardless of position, pay, or power.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Read Full Post »

Leadership 2030In Leadership 2030, Georg Vielmetter and Yvonne Sell provide a road map of the broad trends that are reshaping markets, cultures, and companies. Based on research with the Hay Group, a global management consultancy, they offer insights into six megatrends: the shift of economic power to Asia, the escalating war for talent, environmental crisis, eroding customer and employee loyalty, the melding of private and working lives, and technological convergence. The authors show how these self-reinforcing trends demand enlightened leadership with the skills to engage an ever-widening circle of stakeholders. Gone are the days of the egocentric, alpha-male leadership. To survive the megatrend storm leaders will have to provide workers with greater autonomy while finding ways to respond to the unique needs of every customer.

Six big changes are afoot that will reshape the demands of leadership going forward:

  1. Globalization in the future will be more about power shifting to Asia than it has been in the past. The growing middle class in many developing nations will create new opportunities, but also challenges as multinationals try to serve highly localized markets.
  2. Climate change will drive resource scarcity, forcing leaders to fundamentally rethink their operations.
  3. Rising affluence will drive demand for customized products. Just as consumers seek out more individualized experiences, so too will employees whose work need not be restricted by time and place.
  4. The digital era will shift power to consumers and workers, away from traditional management structures. Already, the digital world is blurring the line between personal and professional lives, while increasing organizational transparency.
  5. The aging population will shrink the workforce and require leaders to cope with intergenerational workplaces.
  6. Several cutting-edge technologies will converge to open new markets. Nanotechnology and biotechnology especially will challenge leadership to invest in R&D programs and to respond effectively to societal worries.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Leaders Make the Future, Leading from the Emerging Future, The Work of Leaders

 

Read Full Post »

94994429In Rapid Realignment, George Labovitz and Victor Rosansky chart the path to optimal organizational performance by integrating key processes, staff, customers, and strategies to serve the primary purpose of an enterprise—increasing stakeholder value. Alignment is the result of this integration, and organizations that achieve it succeed by focusing their people and resources on providing optimal customer satisfaction. In aligned organizations, employees at every level understand the business’s goals and strategies and know how their efforts advance them. Their clear understanding of customer needs enables the constant improvement of products and services that win and maintain customer loyalty. This adjustment, or rapid realignment, is a necessity in a global economy in which swiftly changing conditions and demands can pose serious challenges to an organization’s survival.

According to Labovitz and Rosansky:

  • To support an organization’s primary purpose, its staff, strategy, customers, and processes must be aligned. This alignment requires clear communication, complete understanding of its objectives, and the commitment of all involved in the process. When external forces or events cause misalignment and reduces effectiveness, rapid realignment is essential to ensure continued success.
  • The alignment framework is made up of four elements — strategy, people, processes, and customers. Strategies will change as requirements change, and when they do they must be rapidly deployed. Core processes that serve customers must continually undergo improvement.
  • Vertical alignment is achieved when employees can articulate the organization’s strategy and explain how their work supports it. This understanding is what boosts the deployment of new strategies.
  • Horizontal alignment is achieved when the communication barriers that separate employees from customers are removed. This means that employees understand customer needs and are committed to improving service.
  • Every organization must have a Main Thing — a meaningful description of what it wants to accomplish. It must be a common and unifying concept to which every unit can make a contribution.
  • Social media is an excellent means for fostering trust and bringing people together to advance both the Main Thing and management’s plans for achieving it. It facilitates employee communication with management and enables employees to ask questions that get answers.
  • To effectively change their cultures, organizations must determine the behaviors that will best implement their strategies and meet customer needs, as well as ensure that attitudes and values are aligned with their Main Things.
  • To effectively change behaviors, new strategies must be explained repeatedly. Employees must be able to comprehend how their participation will ensure the strategies’ success and how their contributions will be valued.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Wiki ManagementHBR Guide to Getting the Right Work DoneBusiness at the Speed of Now

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »