The most difficult and impactful decisions in a leader's life are the people decisions. Drawing from examples in the military, a leader has to assess whether an issue was a mistake or a lack of discipline. One merits second chances and the other demands more aggressive action. Here's a case and outcome that illustrates the situation. How would you have handled this situation?
The question, "Do I have to be a jerk to get ahead?" is spoken out of frustration. There's no doubt that in sharp-elbowed organizations, noisy, manipulative individuals can be the ones gaining the plum assignments and key promotions. If you want to get ahead, you don't have to mimic their behaviors, but you do have to choose a strategy to compete. Here are some ideas to help you get ahead without compromising your values:
I’m an advocate of leaders practicing Swift Trust in the workplace. Given that time-to-trust is an essential driver of time-to-performance on teams, the approach makes sense, yet it is not risk-free—it will backfire from time-to-time. Here are some approaches to help you recover when someone makes you question your decision to trust them:
It takes courage, self-confidence, and a high degree of risk tolerance to challenge conventional wisdom in environments fueled by the relentless pursuit of perfecting the status quo. Here are three behaviors of individuals who think and act differently and succeed:
Here’s a simple checklist process I use (and recommend to my clients) to help ensure they avoid the all activity/no vector trap.
It’s great to be busy, but excessive busyness comes from a flawed approach to your situation. Assert control over your priorities and time, and quit letting the lower priority items rent space in your mind. Here are 8 ideas to help:
I’ve long believed learning to lead in the gray-zone inside organizations is a great approach for creating value, standing out, and getting ahead in your career. Here are 10 tips to help you tackle those vexing issues no one owns, by cultivating support and helping others succeed.
Develop a reputation as someone everyone can count on to tackle the big, ugly issues, and watch the doors open. Of course, it pays to have a strategy to avoid the traps while stepping up to solving or fixing the problems others actively avoid. Here are 4 approaches to help:
The work of new manager development in our organizations is mostly messy. If you're the new manager, that's a problem. Ditto for the promoting manager. Here are three questions to help new managers gain critical context for their challenging new roles:
History is filled with examples where a decision at a moment-in-time changed the outcome. As we commemorate the courage of those who participated in the D-Day Invasion in World War II, I look at Eisenhower's decision that day and another fateful decision 80-years earlier that changed the course of a nation. Our workplace decisions aren't on the same scale, yet, the big decisions at a moment in time do change the fate of organizations. What can we learn from history here?