The Success Trap

By: Jim Bruce
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Today's Tuesday Reading is “The Success Trap”, from Jeffrey Pfeffer's August 25th,  BNET Column, The Corner Officer on August 25, 2009.

Pfeffer’s thesis is simple:  When we become successful, it is very easy to drop our guard, to not maintain our standards (much less build on them), and to rest on our laurals.

He argues that to maintain our successes we have to understand the basis of our success and maintain a laserlike focus, discipling ourselves to maintain, and even improve, on what made us successful to begin with.

The Leader of the Future

By: Jim Bruce
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For today’s reading, we turn to a December 2007 FastCompany article by William Taylor, The Leader of the Future.  In this piece Taylor, one of the founders of FastCompany, reports on a discussion with Ron Heifetz, director of the Leadership Education Project at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.  You will likely remember that Heifetz is author of one of the views of leadership we studied early in the l

How to Make People Passionate About Their Work

By: Jim Bruce
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For today’s reading we turn to John Baldoni’s blog at the Harvard Business Review for his piece “How to Make People Passionate About Their Work”.  

Baldoni notes that generating passion for what you do is essential, and doubly so in difficult times.  He goes on to say that it is essential for a leader to have passion as it is vital to convincing others that their work matters.

He offers three suggestions for cultivating passion:

How to Identify Employee's Hidden Talents

By: Jim Bruce
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There’s lots of advice on finding and attracting staff and on identifying and retaining top performers you already have.  Stephen DeMaio, in a recent blog entry – “How to Identify Employees’ Hidden Talents” – argues that it is even more important to look for your current staff's hidden strengths to find new skills and talents that have value to the organization.

DeMano suggests four approaches:

How Do Effective Leaders Handle Change?

By: Jim Bruce
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It seems like every week I hear of universities planning for, going through, or having recently experienced layoffs, terminations, or position eliminations as a result of the economic crisis we are experiencing.  Today’s reading – “Ask the Expert:  How Do Effective Leaders Handle Change?” -- is by Mark Hannum, Principle Consultant at Linkage and looks at practices that enable leaders to be more effective in such tough times.   

Hannum talks in this short piece about many aspects of layoffs and offers a number of specific suggestions:

How Leaders Get Their Teams To "Click"

By: Jim Bruce
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Well-integrated, high-performing teams, teams that “click,” is the subject of today's Tuesday Reading – “How Leaders Get Their Teams To ‘Click’”  by Phil Harken.  Such teams never lose slight of their goals and are largely self-sustaining.  They often seem to take on a life of their own.  Studies by the European Centre for Organizational Research show that teams that “click” always have a “leader who creates the environment and establishes the operating principles and values that are conducive to high performance.”

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