Archives For Leadership

Leaders develop certain habits of thinking to an extraordinary extent. Let’s turn to these specific kinds of thinking or habits of mind. We find that leaders are strong on five main points: word power, information, memory, the ability to make sound decisions, and the habit of reading widely. You can cultivate these strong points.

~ James F. Bender, The Technique of Executive Leadership (1950)

Happy Birthday Millard Fillmore: “The Accidental President”

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Demands on Political Leadership – Beware charisma.

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Coaching Leadership

November 5, 2018 — Leave a comment

A coaching leader needs to be able to build professional relationships built on trust, honesty, and credibility with employees.

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Leadership consists not in degrees of technique but in traits of character; it requires moral rather than athletic or intellectual effort, and it imposes on both leader and follower alike the burdens of self-restraint.

~ Lewis H. Lapham

Leaders focus on the soft stuff.

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The boss drives his men; the leader coaches them.

The boss depends upon authority; the leader on good will.

The boss inspires fear; the leader inspires enthusiasm.

The boss says “I”; the leader “we.”

The boss fixes the blame for the breakdown;

The leader fixes the breakdown.

The boss says “go”; the leader says “let’s go!”

~ Gordon Selfridge

There are no limitations to the mind except those we acknowledge.

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Acquisition of Thought Power by Moral Purity. 

A man who speaks the truth and has moral purity has always powerful thoughts. One who has controlled anger by long practice has tremendous thought power.

If a Yogi whose thought is very powerful speaks one word, it will produce tremendous impression on the minds of others.

Virtues like truthfulness, earnestness and industry are the best sources of mental power.Purity leads to wisdom and immortality. Purity is of two kinds, internal or mental and external or physical.

Mental purity is more important. Physical purity is also needed. With the establishment of internal mental purity, cheerfulness of mind, one-pointed mind, conquest of Indriyas and fitness for the realization of the Self are obtained.

~ Sri Swami Sivananda, Thought Power

Modifying Employee Behavior

Essentially, it is difficult (if not impossible) to change the behavior of some employees.   Generally speaking, the only way you can hope to modify or change someone’s behavior is by:

  1. Making them aware of their behavior;
  2. Advising them of the impact of their behavior on others;
  3. Creating an environment which requires the person to change, and providing them with the skills/training needed to modify their behavior;
  4. Clearly defining the expected changes and reinforcing the changes in behavior when they are observed;
  5. Confronting the employee each time the employee responds inappropriately. Over time they may realize that you will no longer tolerate their inappropriate behavior;
  6. Clearly defining the consequences for failure to change and invoking the consequences if they fail to change;
  7. Documenting your interview(s).

Communicating Change

To communicate your required behavioral changes, a six part message format can be used. It is designed to get the employees attention, to focus on their behavior, and inform them of the consequences for failure to change.

  1. Describe their behavior.
  2. Describe how their behavior affects the group.
  3. Describe how their behavior affects the coworker who is the recipient of their behavior (if appropriate).
  4. Describe how you feel about their behavior.
  5. Describe your future performance expectations.
  6. Describe the sanctions for failure to change.

And of course, DOCUMENT the conversation and have the employee agree on the behavior changes.

~ This is an excerpt from Working With Difficult Employee Problems, a Mastering Leadership Skills seminar.