Is it Safe to Fail on Your Team?

If you want to develop and work with innovative, creative, and courageously bold leaders, you must develop a culture of risk where people are free to fail. All innovation, all creativity, all new ideas are inherently risky. In fact, in a world that is changing at light speed, even doing what has been tried and true in the past can be risky.  There are no guarantees of success.  Therefore, building an environment that empowers leaders includes making it safe to fail.  When someone truly has…Continue Reading “Is it Safe to Fail on Your Team?”

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Who has Your Back?

I am constantly amazed by the number of leaders who feel they work out on a limb, doing what needs to be done, without the confidence that someone has their back. It shows up in the anxiety surrounding performance reviews. It shows up when people are gun-shy although bold innovation is called for. It shows up when people silo the way they work, uncertain how others will evaluate their contribution. What about you? And, what about the people who report to you? The easiest solution…Continue Reading “Who has Your Back?”

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Leaders are Empowered in Community

Here’s the lie: Leadership is a solo endeavor performed by the rugged individualist. With or without the read cape, leaders rise above needing others. They make it happen. Other people are spectators. Here’s the truth: all of that is bunch of bunk. Leaders need community. They need it for their soul, they need it for better perspective, they need it to help them lead well. You need it and so do I.  Sure, leadership calls for courageous decisions and at times is an isolating reality….Continue Reading “Leaders are Empowered in Community”

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Good leaders develop other leaders. Wise leaders empower them to succeed. This is the third piece of a six part series about what it takes to create an environment that not only develops leaders but helps them succeed—what I call an empowering environment. Leadership is not just about what you do, it is about how you multiply yourself, and it is impossible to overestimate the value of the environment you create for them. The first things that come to mind when you start talking resources are…Continue Reading “Give People Essential Resources”

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Leaders crave for a way to increase the horsepower of their organization. And, by horsepower, what I really mean is manpower. It shows up in questions and conversations like, “how do we keep our people motivated and engaged?” “How do help people give us their best?” “What does it take to get more people to volunteer or to volunteer more of themselves?” Creating an empowering environment is a way to do just that.

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A friend and I talked one day about the perils of a hurried life and how hazardous it is to our souls. The more we considered how much a hurried life turns our souls into raisins and preps us to give beef jerky instead of steak to the people we love, the more we agreed, a hurried life is actually a toxic life. If you are open to new ideas that might inject breathing space — the influx of fresh air — into your daily workload, I have four keys to help you get started.

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Every day as a leader you have to cut through the fog and noise of the immediate to keep things focused on what matters most. There is no place where that challenge is more important than in managing the tasks and priorities swimming in your head. To that end, I offer this simple discipline: Identify the ONE THING. In every situation, every day, identify the one thing that matters most right now. And do that.

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