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  • Leadership

    MINDFULNESS & GENEROSITY

    Mindfulness is more than being present, awake, and aware. It’s also an ethical stance and generosity to the world around you. Mindfulness will have a positive impact on your peace of mind, your impact on the world around you, and your performance as a leader. I will offer a personal / family example of mindfulness [Read More]

  • Coaching Leadership

    COLLABORATIVE PRACTICE FOR DELEGATION & EMPOWERMENT

    Crucial Leadership Practice: People mistakenly assume that delegation is all or nothing: “I do it” or “you do it.” This view is over simplistic—and sometimes negligent. “To a hammer, every problem looks like a nail” (Abraham Maslow). Don’t be a hammer. Expand your range and flexibility as a leader. In my last blog, I described [Read More]

  • Leadership

    COLLABORATIVE PRACTICE ON PROJECTS & TASKS

    Collaborative practice is one of the most significant and critical challenges in business. How do you get people to work really well together, participate to the max, share their best ideas, have strong, healthy, functional debate, and make great team decisions? A diversity of perspectives and talents on your team is useless if people don’t [Read More]

  • Coaching Leadership

    ASKING FOR FEEDBACK

    Feedback can be invaluable for improving your performance, calibrating your efforts, and identifying opportunities for improvement. Good feedback is tough to get: Asking for feedback is a risky business. You never know what you are going to get. And it is usually difficult to get anything at all. When you ask people point-blank for feedback, [Read More]

  • Leadership

    PRE-SELLING YOUR IDEAS

    Pitching a big idea, and asking for approval on the spot, is very tough: People often resist ideas that they are hearing for the first time Asking people for an immediate decision can put people on the spot People tend to support the status quo when confronted or challenged   Putting people on the spot can [Read More]

  • Leadership

    AUDITING YOUR PRIORITIES

    Quick audit for team or project priorities: Auditing for value, relevance, and balance:  After identifying your highest priority objectives (instructions here), or after writing your statement of purpose for a particular project and identifying the project’s key objectives & metrics, ask yourself the following questions, ideally together with your team. The discussion is as valuable [Read More]

  • Leadership Metrics

    ALIGNING TEAMS

    Outline: This blog will: Define strategic alignment Share a process for improving alignment between two departments or teams Map the value and benefits of alignment (metrics) “Strategic Alignment”: Strategic alignment is the practice of aligning individual and team goals with organizational objectives, and more broadly, aligning all of the organization’s resources (human, financial, systems, relationships, [Read More]

  • Leadership

    GARDNER ON LEADERSHIP

    Here are a few of my favourite reflections on leadership from an elder statesman: John W. Gardner, On Leadership (Free Press, 1993): The world is moved by highly motivated people. No human venture succeeds without strongly motivated men and women. Anything that humans expend effort for can be a source of motivation. They expend effort [Read More]

  • Leadership

    ALIGNING GOALS WITH ORGANIZATIONAL OBJECTIVES

    Prioritizing goals for strategic alignment:  How do you prioritize your work; ensure you spend the most time on what counts most; align individual and team goals with organizational objectives; maintain a big picture focus? Here are some places to look, criteria, parameters…to align your efforts with the big picture—and help others do the same. Tactics: [Read More]

  • Leadership

    MONEYBALL – GREAT LEADERSHIP MOVIE

    Moneyball is a great movie about leadership—and based on a true story. Setting the stage: Billy Beanne (Brad Pitt) is the GM for the Oakland A’s baseball team. He has a tiny budget for players, putting him at a major disadvantage in big league baseball. He hires Peter Brand (Jonah Hill) to help him with [Read More]

  • Leadership

    SETTING PRIORITIES: 2×2 GRID SHORTCUT

    This blog is about doing things right and doing the right things. In a world of complexity, constant change, huge workloads, and intense pressure to perform, it is very difficult to maintain focus and stay clear on your priorities. This blog will review a great technique for setting priorities and then show you a little [Read More]

  • Leadership

    CHECK IN WITH YOUR EMPLOYEES

    When was the last time you really talked to your employees, and really listened to them? How do they like working for you and your firm? What are they thinking these days? Do they have any new ideas? Could you be removing any obstacles for them? Brief 30 minute, one-on-one meetings with your employees can [Read More]

  • Culture Leadership

    MANAGING YOUR CORE VALUES

    Many companies don’t take their core values seriously. It’s a shame. Even if your company’s core values are not original or cool, they express important decisions about how you are going to work together, get the job done, and present yourselves to the world. How do you get your employees to take your core values [Read More]

  • Leadership

    THE FUTURE OF SITUATIONAL LEADERSHIP

    Major advance: Situational leadership made a major advance in leadership theory: it helped us move from “one size fits all” to four major leadership approaches, each suited to a different situation. The basic idea is simple and compelling: different situations call for different leadership styles. For example, a beginner needs more coaching support than an [Read More]

  • Leadership

    DRIVE: MANY TYPES & SOURCES OF MOTIVATION

    Leadership is really tough. In addition to fighting internal obstacles (silos, turf wars, red tape…), the external playing field is never level. We are often competing against companies with bigger budgets and better connections. Doing great things, achieving big results, keeping the troops focused and engaged requires a very deep kind of motivation and commitment. [Read More]

  • Leadership

    MASLOW: STILL GREAT FOR EMPLOYEE MOTIVATION

    When is the last time you had the good fortune to study human motivation and employee engagement? Maslow’s hierarchy of needs is still extremely valuable: from turning around terrible morale and enhancing employee motivation and productivity, to fully engaging your employees, and inspiring them to peak performance. This blog is intended to be a great [Read More]

  • Leadership

    MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT EMPLOYEE MOTIVATION

    Money: Dozens of studies have demonstrated that money is not the number one motivator of employees. Pay rarely shows up in the top three or four motivators. In many studies, appreciation, independence, meaningful work, and opportunities for development are shown to be more powerful drivers of motivation and retention than salary. So why do so [Read More]

  • Leadership

    Engaging Senior Leaders in Supporting Leadership Development

    Involving senior management in leadership development (LD) is always identified as a critical success factor. Having your VPs and CEO facilitate workshops, however, is not the only way to get them involved. There are many options and alternatives. I hope you find the following suggestions useful in building your own lists. You can make some [Read More]

  • Leadership

    LEADING AND FACILITATING

    Command & control leadership: Many people still think of leadership as command & control. They assume leaders should know their jobs well enough to be able to answer the questions, make the decisions, and tell people what to do. They feel that leadership should be top down, hands on, confident, charismatic—and in your face. This [Read More]

  • Culture Leadership

    AUTHENTIC, SUSTAINABLE CULTURE

    My last blog discussed culture versus cult, and outlined some of the signs and costs of arrogance and dogmatism in organizational culture. To recall a couple of the themes: Language and enlightenment are journeys and not destinations (not final, fixed resting places). We should therefore strive to be: open and curious rather than closed and [Read More]

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