“I Failed” or “I’m a Failure”: Growth from Adversity

I failed this week.  Does that make me a failure? Last Sunday, I set myself and my readers a challenge:  every time someone asked me a question, I was to answer with a question.  I failed miserably.  I managed to do it twice, out of what must have been hundreds of questions.  What a failure! … Read more “I Failed” or “I’m a Failure”: Growth from Adversity


Thinking on your Feet: Leadership Communication

Thinking on your Feet

In a recent post, I spoke about a leader’s most valuable talent – the ability to resist making complicated things overly simple, appealing to the lowest common denominator.  This really got me thinking about one of the skills that we all respect and admire in great leaders: thinking on your feet. Some people are brilliant at … Read more Thinking on your Feet: Leadership Communication


21st Century Leadership: Ditch the Military Metaphors

Early in my leadership journey, I attended a three day retreat on Emotional Intelligence for Leaders.  There were about 20 of us, all from different organizations, all at different stages in our careers, and all starting with a different understanding of what emotional intelligence was. Over the three days, there were a range of activities and … Read more 21st Century Leadership: Ditch the Military Metaphors


Perception & Reality: Things aren’t Always as they Seem

As a leader, it is absolutely vital to remain open-minded: to understanding that your perception of how things are, probably is not the same as the perceptions of your co-workers, your boss, or your customers. In this post I outline why this will be a stumbling block to you becoming an exceptional leader unless you can overcome … Read more Perception & Reality: Things aren’t Always as they Seem


The Importance of Compassionate Storytelling

Leadership and Storytelling Leadership is all about storytelling. There are many great articles and books that support this premise, and provide advice and guidance to leaders on how to build their storytelling craft.  Stephen Denning’s The Leader’s Guide to Storytelling is an excellent example of this and there are others, including Howard Gardner, and more recently, … Read more The Importance of Compassionate Storytelling


Powerlessness: Wasting Time on Inert Emotional Banter

Powerlessness and Personal Agency Do you generally believe that you are in control of your own life?  Or are you a victim of circumstance? In psychological terms, everyone can be placed somewhere along a spectrum from one extreme end to the other, and everywhere in between.  At the ‘victim of circumstance’ end are a special subset … Read more Powerlessness: Wasting Time on Inert Emotional Banter


Why Communication is so Hard: 7 Things to Improve

Why Communication is Hard Communication (or lack of it) is the most frequently cited cause of workplace dissatisfaction, disengagement and frustration.  It can lead to relationship breakdowns, corporate collapses and world wars. In a recent “Wait But Why” post about Elon Musk’s latest big idea, Tim Urban provided a deceptively simple explanation of why communication between … Read more Why Communication is so Hard: 7 Things to Improve


The ThinkingKnowingSaying Gap

The gap between what we think – what we think we think – and what we actually do or say may be one of the greatest causes of inequality in our day.  As social structures have become increasingly complex, so too, the need for sophisticated communication skills has increased exponentially. I call this the ThinkingKnowingSaying Gap. … Read more The ThinkingKnowingSaying Gap