The Best Way to Thank a Veteran this Veteran’s Day

This Veteran’s Day, don’t thank a veteran, hire a veteran. It will be the best thing you ever did for your company. “If you are in a position to hire, hire a veteran. They will be the best employees you have.” Robert Bosch As of September 2017, more than 309,000 veterans are out of work.... Continue Reading →

The One Mistake to Avoid as a New Leader

You got the new job. You accepted the promotion. You’re in charge now. Whether you’re a first-time leader or an experienced manager in a new role, the first 100 days are critical. It’s important to set the tone early. One of the biggest mistakes I see new leaders make is when they spend all their time working in... Continue Reading →

Are Employees an Expense or an Asset? The Answer May Surprise You

“Being an employee of several different companies, I can honestly say that I've felt like nothing more than a line item on a spreadsheet somewhere that an accountant is desperately trying to eliminate.” This comment was written by a reader on my recent article, Putting Employees Ahead of Customers, and it got me thinking. Why... Continue Reading →

5 Keys to Setting the Tone as a New Leader

Whether you’re a first-time leader or an experienced manager in a new role, the first 100 days are critical. People are watching you closely which can be intimidating but it also can be used to your advantage. “As a leader you set the tone for your entire team.” Colin Powell Setting the tone is imperative... Continue Reading →

This Start-Up Story is a Must Read for Every Entrepreneur

Forget all the phony internet garbage about how glorious the life of an entrepreneur is. Ignore the Instagram pictures of Ferraris and private jets with the word “hustle” written over it. If you want to understand what it’s like to start a business, you need to read this book. Phil Knight is incredibly successful. He... Continue Reading →

10 Steps to Survive and Thrive in Your First Leadership Job

  I had all the wisdom of a 23-year-old and all the experience of a junior officer who spent the past year in Naval training schools. In other words, I had no idea what I was doing. But I was in charge. My first leadership job was taking over the Reactor Controls Department on the... Continue Reading →

Remembering 9/11: Lessons in Crisis Leadership

  The world changed on September 11, 2001. And as a leader, I changed too. I was seven years out of the Navy and leading my first manufacturing plant. My time in the military was over and I had started a new career running a factory which made products for the electric utility industry.  The... Continue Reading →

The 7 Best Employee Gifts

This is the time of the year where we think about gifts. We gather with family and friends and exchange gifts that we hope will be meaningful.  It’s also the time of year where we begin to reflect on the past year and plan for the next. As you think back on this past year... Continue Reading →

Are you Leading a Rebellion in your Industry?

"Rebellions are Built on Hope" ~ Jyn Erso, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story Yes, I am a Star Wars fan. In fact, I’m old enough to have seen the first three movies in the theater when they were originally released. I love all the movies in the Star Wars franchise but Rogue One spoke... Continue Reading →

5 Qualities Every Employee Wants in a Boss

Great article by Randy Conley. It seems like common sense but too often these simple leadership traits are overlooked.

Leading with Trust

I-Love-My-BossBosses…most of us have one. Some are good and some are not so good. But every one of them has an impact. The question is, what kind of impact? Does their influence cause learning, growth, and success for their team members, or does it damper their enthusiasm, discourage autonomy, and produce mediocrity?

I believe leadership may be a complex notion but it doesn’t have to be complicated in practice. There are basic, common sense behaviors that successful leaders share.

To illustrate this principle of common sense leadership, I asked my wife, two sons, and nephew to list five qualities they want in a boss. The similarity in their lists was remarkable (and pretty common sense). By no means do they represent a statistically significant population size, but their answers are valuable nuggets of leadership wisdom that any leader should put into practice.

Here are five common sense qualities every employee wants in…

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Are You Easy to Follow? 10 Things Great Leaders Know and Do

Randy Conley is right on target in this article on Leading with Trust. He asks a simple question to leaders, “are you easy to follow?” His 10 characteristics of great leaders are consistent with my observations as well. Check it out and let me know what you think.

Leading with Trust

Easy Way or Hard Way“He’s a pretty easy guy to follow.”

That was the response from a friend when we were recently talking about how much she enjoys her job. She’s worked with this person for several years, they have a great rapport, and she loves her work. She said the fact that her boss is easy to work with is a primary reason for her success and job satisfaction.

Her statement got me thinking about my own leadership. Am I easy to follow? I’d like to think so, but of course, the only real opinion that matters is that of my team members. Considering leadership in general, what makes a person easy to follow? I think the answers are pretty straight forward and common sense, but often not common practice because our own personality quirks and baggage get in the way.

As I’ve considered this question, the following 10 leadership practices have come clear…

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One Kind Word

Today, one of my colleagues gave me the ultimate compliment.  In front of my boss and several other senior leaders, he told me something very meaningful.  He said, "You are making a difference."  As leaders, most of us spend every day trying to make our teams and our organizations better and many days it's hard to tell... Continue Reading →

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