Taking the Lead or Playing to Please

Taking the Lead or Playing to PleaseIt’s a brand new role. No one else has been here before. You have the opportunity to make a real mark. And here is where you face your first dilemma as the leader of this newly identified role. How is my success being assessed?  For that matter, even if it’s not a new role, a leader coming into a role new to her (or him), often realizes the difficulty of understanding how success in the role will be determined.

And one of the easiest ways to address the dilemma is to work hard to please the people who are most influential in determining your success. But that may not equate to the long-term success you’re looking for in your reputation as a leader. Continue reading

When Are Emotions Appropriate in Leadership?

Stressful businessman at outdoorsMartin was going through a tough divorce that took him by surprise.  He knew his angst and sorrow showed through at work.  “I worry about how I’m being perceived – less leader-like, more needy.”

Emily had frequent encounters with a colleague who was consistently mean-spirited, un-collaborative, and dismissive of her team’s work.  After six months of forced efforts to find common ground, she admitted she “felt angry at the very sight of him, and totally out of control emotionally when around him”. Continue reading

Left Brain and Right Brain – Not Either/Or

Left Brain and Right Brain - Not Either/Or“I’m afraid I let my emotions influence my decisions too often.”
“I try to remain rational at work.”
“I am empathetic with my staff, but when it comes to getting the work done, I can’t let emotions get in the way.”

Somewhere in our normative formation as leaders, we learned that the left brain and right brain were meant not to mix; that we were to separate their usage in our business lives. Continue reading

Helping an Employee – or Are You?

Helping an Employee - or Are You?Ella steamed out of Diane’s office and directly to her mentor, Greg. “She did it again!  She knows the recommendations I gave her for the Highlands project are going to resolve all the issues the customer has raised, yet once again, she had to ‘help’. She just couldn’t resist offering her own little ‘improvements’. Why can’t she ever just say, “nice job, Ella”?” Continue reading