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Metrics may represent reality, but they aren’t reality

The Midwest is bracing for some cold weather. Forecasts around the Chicago area predict some of the coldest temperatures in Chicago’s history (at least in the history of recorded temperatures). As Chicagoans gear up for the cold, the “old timers” are rolling their eyes. They tell us that while our forecasted -55 wind chill is cold,… (read more)

Three things you can talk about when you don’t have all of the answers

Let’s face it, the business world has become quite uncertain.  Helping people manage through that uncertainty can be difficult.  Many leaders feel similarly challenged as they are often as unsure about what is happening as are their teams. We know that uncertainty breeds anxiety.  An anxious workforce is not a productive, happy, or engaged workforce…. (read more)

Five questions to STOP asking in 2019!

This is a repost from last year. Still a good reminder. ——————————————————————- Are you doing the right things? I’ve noticed a fundamental difference between high level leaders and the rest of us when determining what actions to take. They start with one question: will this solve the problem           ? If the answer is “yes”, they… (read more)

Make 2019 your year of meaningful connections

Do you talk with people anymore? It seems that although the internet and social media have supposedly shrunk the world, they’ve also shrunk our interactions. Everything has become transactional. When was the last time you called someone to schedule a meeting? It’s much faster to coordinate through an instant message or email, right? But here’s the… (read more)

The 12 days of leadership Christmas

Back by popular demand… The 2018 PNC Christmas Price index puts the price of purchasing all of the gifts for each day of the twelve days of Christmas at $170,609.46 (up 0.5% from last year). Holiday time can be expensive but it doesn’t have to be for good leaders. The following list contains gifts that will last a lifetime. Best… (read more)

Stop reinforcing and enabling poor focus and attention

REPOST from Feb, 2017 – This problem seems to be getting worse rather than better. ————————————————————————————– Warren Buffet recently released his annual investor letter. It was twenty-nine pages long. It was refreshing to see. In a world where we increasingly hear that we must be brief due to decreased attention spans, Buffet chose to go with substance. I believe… (read more)

Stop destroying and start building : A plea to recapture civility

Conversation has become war.  Just look at the headlines: Man destroys anti-abortion argument with a simple question Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez DESTROYS Conservative Troll Massive research analysis destroys conservative argument against letting trans people transition Professor ‘Totally Destroys’ Student In This Email After He Asks For A Grade Bump Law Professor Absolutely Destroys Student Letter Protesting Her… (read more)

Acting like an owner is not enough

There is an old piece of conventional wisdom regarding leadership. Encourage your employees to act like owners. The idea seems good on the surface. An owner would ideally have more connection and engagement with his or her business. This would hopefully lead to decisions that are more centered around the business’s success. However, even the strongest connection… (read more)

The next best thing in leadership? Master the basics!

A client once asked me to review an article that she wanted to use in a course on managing virtual teams.  The article was from a very well-known magazine.  It provided ten tips for managing virtual teams: Be available Organize regular meetings with both individuals and the whole team Encourage informal conversations Rotate (team members to different locations) Be creative with… (read more)