The Coaching Leader cultivates resilience

We all have tough weeks. The weekend comes and we’re tired. For many leaders every day is tough. The pace, complexity, and responsibility is relentless. (It’s not just leaders. Family, work, interests, community commitments. It’s you, too, I bet.) But you signed up for it, and you keep at it. However, […]

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How do leaders motivate their people

The Coaching Leader is a crucial and under-appreciated leadership role. Take motivating team members. Today’s coaching leaders have mostly quit using carrots and sticks. They’ve already noticed that they don’t always work. Nearly fifty years of research says the same. Net-Net: This post is about… 21st century leaders look to three […]


Three Leadership Lessons from the Spotlight Team

You already know parts of the story of the movie Spotlight. It’s also a story how the reporters got the story with important observations about leadership, teams, and the limits of what we can know. In the telling, perspective, attention, and reflection move center stage as the failures of the […]

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Inside out, outside in

Three ways to lead with thought and action today

One of the great frustrations of people with vision, energy, and insight – the way we like to see ourselves – is why others don’t see the world as we do. Once we notice this, and all of its obvious obstacles, we take a step. The easiest step to take […]


Really big transformation? It’s happening today

Does leading start from the inside or from the outside? Is it what I think or what I do? What about the company, the people I work with? I am confident that if you’re the CEO of a multi-billion dollar company, it’s not too late for you. If you’re an engineer […]

Look at that

Get out now!

If you hate what you do, get out now!

Karl Pillemer is a gerontologist at Cornell University who’s spent years interviewing thousands of people age 65 and over about, well, about all sorts of things. On the topic of work, Pillemer’s senior sages were clear: If you hate what you do, get out now. “Spending years in a job […]


Three ways simple gratitude can change your leadership

Gratitude isn’t easy for me. I can’t help but notice how similar the word is to “platitude.” I have thought of it as thin, perfunctory, forced. I am changing my mind. And that’s changing the way I lead. It can change the way you lead, too. What is it? Gratitude […]

Here comes that gift again

No thanks

“I don’t want to be a leader”

Good. There are probably too many people who want to be in charge, tell people what to do, control events, and bend circumstances to their way of thinking. But that’s not leadership. That’s authority. That’s the exercise of power. It has a bad reputation and it’s well-deserved. Maybe you haven’t […]


Coaching Manager: How to keep the conversation on track

“It’s not my fault,” she explains. Is he crying a little? She won’t take a next step. When these, and other situations pop up, the coaching manager can feel like he’s in the weeds. When managers start making a concerted effort to add developmental coaching to their repertoire, they can […]

Coaching Manager conversation map

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Three ways to get learning into your bones

Forty eight percent of employees say they receive no formal training. You’re thinking, “That’s not good. But taking in the big picture, it’s conceivable.” So what? First, get pragmatic. You have a fifty-fifty chance of getting formal training at work. Ask for it. Seek it out. Find programs outside the […]