The great thing about leadership is the balance between action, intrigue, drama and suspense similar to a well written action thriller.

~ Damian D. “Skipper” Pitts

Flip Your Organization Chart

By Brian Layer
Chief Executive Officer, N2Growth

Do you know what everyone in your organization does? To find out, you might want to change your perspective.

Years ago I learned to draw reading Betty Edwards’ book, “Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain.” The effort sharpened my perspective of just about everything. To draw, I learned to see differently and I walked away with a clearer, fuller appreciation of the things around me.

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Eric Cantor: The Art Of The Graceful Exit

By John Baldoni
Chair, Leadership Development, N2Growth

Politicians make the best punching bags.

Eric Cantor is Exhibit A. He was laid flat by a roundhouse punch by voters in his House District who opted for an unknown economics professor as their Republican candidate. Cantor was surprised; his own internal polls had him leading handily, and he out spent his opponent nearly 20:1. What a knockout.

While Cantor may have lost touch with voters, he did not lose touch with his humanity. He conceded defeat on election eve, and the very next day Cantor said that he was giving up his role as Majority Leader of the House of Representatives.

Politics aside, Cantor’s exit shows class. As pundits have noted, by removing himself from office he spared his party the kind of internecine battles that could only hurt Republicans.

 

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Leadership Code Switching in the Innovation Sandbox

By Damian D. “Skipper” Pitts
Chair, Organizational Development, N2Growth
with Susan C. Guiher

Leadership is about being able to lead out from crises before they occur (the defining meaning of Crisis Leadership). This is a talent and skill that many leaders today are simply lacking. What’s needed, is a disciplined, future-focused and intelligent “preemptive-minded cultural” approach known as Crisis Leadership. This approach brings forth three considerations in behavioral intelligence, which when used in combination, will increase leadership’s ability to become more effective in dealing with crises, chaos and turbulence in organizations.

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Target’s Fall Guy: Is Your Board Prepared?

By Patricia Lenkov
Chair, Executive Search, N2growth

Gregg Steinhafel, former Chairman and CEO of Target Corporation stepped down earlier this month. The primary reason stated was because of the continued fall-out from the 2013 massive data breach. And massive it was! In case you don’t recall, up to 110 million customer records were compromised.

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Leadership isn’t about leveraging your people – it’s about how much leverage you can create FOR your people.

~ Mike Myatt

Jill Abramson On Resilience: ‘Show What You Are Made Of’

By John Baldoni
Chair, Leadership Development, N2Growth

“You know the sting of losing. When that happens, show what you are made of.’’

That is what Jill Abramson told the graduates of Wake Forest University in a commencement address. “Resilience,” she noted was the theme of her address, and it seems appropriate in the wake of her summary dismissal as executive editor of the New York Times.

 

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The Toxic Leader

By Grant Wattie
President, N2Growth Australia

There is a new definition of leadership in our lexicon. The seagull leader is someone who flies in, s**t’s over everything, and leaves. I’m constantly amazed when working inside organizations that the names and examples of such people come up constantly in the conversation. Yet rather than being weeded out, they seem to survive and thrive in an institutional ethic that values by choosing short term greed over longer-term value and culture.

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Management: Good Service Begins (And Ends) With Good Values

By John Baldoni
Chair, Leadership Development, N2Growth

“They make it easy for us to do our jobs right.”

That is what a young service advisor at my local dealership said to me when I complimented him on his service acumen. He had overhead him speaking to a new customer; he was solicitous of the customer’s needs and made no effort to “upsell” him on services he didn’t need. In fact, he didn’t sell him anything; he just advised.

This dealership, founded by Howard Cooper in Ann Arbor, Michigan, has a history of customer service. When Howard sold the store in 2012, he took a portion of the proceeds and distributed them to his employees based upon their tenure. For every year of service employees received $1,000. Even employees who had less than one year service received something in profit sharing. The new owners (Germain Honda) are building on the service tradition that Howard Cooper established.

 

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