The LeadershipZone for better leadership

Get into the leadershipzone – practical tools and ideas you can use to improve your effectiveness as a leader or manager


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Leadership Development: “I’ve never been so motivated”

It seems like people want quick and easy leadership development. The Board and budget-holders mainly.

Facilitators and trainers just spread their magic dust and, lo and behold, powerful leaders emerge. Not only is our expectation of leaders still in the mould of the ‘heroic leader’, but we expect miracles from our leadership development programmes too.

At the same time, there’s  an expectation from programme designers that leadership development is necessarily hard. It’s going to be tough. People will be challenged. Pushed out of their comfort zone.

It’s easy to see where this comes from.

  • The leadership development industry grew out of war – and what makes successful leaders at times of crisis.
  • It grew out of psychology – before the word ‘positive’ was introduced into that field.
  • It grew out of scarcity and the necessity for more – better performance and increased productivity.

So if your leadership pipeline is full of broken people who need fixing psychologically; who are leading through crises, and working in situations of famine and scarcity, not currently delivering – fine.

Go ahead, if you think that approach works.  If, on the other hand, you have a pipeline of good, talented people, who need the skills and opportunities to excel, maybe there’s a better way? Continue reading

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Leadership – the top three trust-building skills

I’m currently coaching two Country Directors of a global organisation.  Different countries.  Same issue.  Trust.  Or more to the point – distrust.
Or is it mistrust?

The Forton Group, LeadershipZone, leadership, coaching, trust

source: grammarist.com

Stephen Covey Jnr., son of the ‘7 habits’ author, wrote The Speed of Trust.  The rapid and positive impacts of working in an environment of trust.

When trust is in place, things get achieved.  Results are better.  Performance rises. 

Continue reading


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Developing Emotionally-Intelligent Leaders – Learning the lessons

Writing 10 blogs on emotional intelligence over the Christmas break, I was intrigued to see which of these would have current relevance to work in the new year.

One topic stands out for me:Developing Emotional Intelligence Continue reading


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Emotionally-Intelligent Leadership Number 10

Challenge #10: Emotional Intelligence as a ‘whole system’ solution

Leaders need to understand that Emotional Intelligence is a ‘whole system’ benefit; a positive and enduring solution. An investment for now & the long term.

The new leadership is organisation-wide.  Every team member is part of the whole system.  Emotional Intelligence at Work Continue reading


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Emotionally-Intelligent Leadership Challenge Number 9

Challenge #9 Leadership is no longer the role of a single ‘hero leader’

A connected organisation no longer relies on single ‘hero leaders’ or champions to take on that responsibility solo.  This challenges peoples’ individual egos – but it’s actually a reflection of the reality of complex organisations.leader as superhero

“Everything we’re doing is part of the system.  There is no ‘Archimedean point’ where we’re either failing, or, if we pull harder, we’re going to succeed.” 

(Paul Hawken) Continue reading


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Emotionally-Intelligent Leadership Challenge Number 8

Challenge #8: people are better motivated by positive emotions, but leaders prefer to motivate with the negative

Negative drivers, such as ‘burning platforms speeches’, or ‘carrot and stick’ methods are poor motivators – but seem easy and immediate.

According to Goleman “We’re better motivated by positive emotions: it feels more meaningful and the urge to act lasts longer.” Continue reading


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Emotionally-Intelligent Leadership Challenges Number 7

Challenge #7: leaders need to include themselves in the emotional intelligence conversation

This self-inclusion in personal and professional development takes willingness. When leaders talk about developing leadership competences, they need to include themselves – but may prefer to talk about the development needs of others.

I was working with a group of leadership development experts recently and, when I mentioned this challenge, they all nodded vigorously and smiled wryly. Continue reading