Year: 2012

Create and measure success, month by month, with a CEO (or Executive) Calendar. Being a CEO (or manager or front line worker) typically means having more things to handle than you can actually pay attention to.  Most humans can track …

Creating a CEO Calendar Read More »

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Part of your end-of-year routine should be to take stock. What did you learn in 2012? How will you make 2013 better? This is a form of benchmarking. Comparing yourself to yourself, and to others, and looking for ways to …

How and Why to Benchmark Read More »

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It’s the end of Q4 and leaders are once more pondering staff performance evaluations. Most people evaluate too little too late. Here’s how you can get way, way ahead of the curve for 2013. As I’ve mentioned before, you’ll make …

Evaluating Staff Performance, Redux Read More »

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Effective leaders are constantly learning. To help you keep learning, here are five of my favorite books, old and new, for growing a CEO’s or a manager’s capabilities. Pick one up to read over the holidays, or on your bus …

Leader’s Bookshelf Read More »

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My client Jean was overwhelmed. The big meeting was tomorrow, the stakes were high, and there was so much she didn’t know.  “My mind is racing, and I’m paralyzed,” she told me. “I can’t eat. I can’t prepare.  I don’t …

How to Master a Sense of Overwhelm Read More »

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Dave was in a bind. His top architects were all idle because his drafters were behind on their work.  Clients were going to get their plans late. Dave explained that his drafting department was a little short handed, and he …

How to Rise Above Circumstances Read More »

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I always hear how much meetings suck.  (If you lead meetings, you’ll find detailed guidance on making your meetings better here, here, and here.) But what if you’re not leading the meeting — what if you’re just suffering through it? …

How to Participate in a Meeting Read More »

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For every leader who loves numbers, there is a skeptic. They both have points — without measures, we cannot tell how we are doing, yet many metrics seem arbitrary or measure the wrong thing.  Meanwhile, often the right goals seem …

How to Pick Good Metrics Read More »

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Jake is a terrific member of his fast-growing company’s senior leadership team. His boss Darcy, the owner, is a sweet lady with great personal skills. That complements Jake’s tough, task-oriented, ramrod approach. Odds are good Darcy will one day sell …

How to be Less Demanding and More Effective Read More »

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My friend Michelle has been thrust into a no-win situation at work.  She asked me how to best “manage up” — i.e. how to manage her boss — to salvage the situation.  Here’s what to do and what not to …

How to Manage your Boss Read More »

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CEOs often have senior leaders who don’t “get a seat at the strategy table.” These are usually Directors or VPs who oversee support functions — this happens most notoriously with directors of HR and IT. It’s a tremendous lost opportunity, …

How to make your Team more Strategic Read More »

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The business owner or CEO is the inevitable recipient of problems, complaints, and suggestions. The tide of them can feel overwhelming. One client of mine took to hiding from his staff, and feeling vaguely picked upon, when staff members tried …

How to Listen to Complaints as a CEO Read More »

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Should you be a ‘big picture’ leader or should you ‘sweat the small stuff’?  The best leaders do both — the real trick is to swap between the two regularly, without allowing yourself to become fooled. Take two business owners. …

How to Get In and Out of the Weeds Read More »

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Erik, CEO of a small technology firm, was in trouble.  His most time-consuming clients weren’t paying on time — one wasn’t paying at all.  His pipeline of new work was nearly empty. At the end of one day, when he …

How to Ask for Help Read More »

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My friend Les was at odds with his church, and their mutual disagreement was heading for a big, ugly showdown at the annual leadership election.  Everyone’s passions were high, and neither side was listening to the other — I became …

Master the Four Stories of Transcending Conflict Read More »

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