Lead the Leader – a crazy experiment

When I say “leader,” you likely see a speaker. You likely see someone separated from the crowd, perhaps facing them.  That was me in my lecture last week to 80 non-MBA graduate school students. But add a couple elements to the picture. Before I began speaking, I asked for a couple volunteers to take careful … Continued

Use This Leverage Point For the Micromanager and the Micromanaged

I often do an exercise in which I ask people to take index cards and write down the behaviors they have experienced from their managers which have dis-abled, de-energized, de-motivated, dis-couraged, or otherwise dis-sed or de-ed them.  Stop for a nano-second and consider a manager who had this dampening impact on you!  What did he … Continued

Pushback Management – Giving and Getting It

Every parent’s nightmare:  It’s the Sunday before Christmas and you’re at the mall.  It’s 4:00 and you have to get two more gifts; you won’t have another chance with work deadlines, family coming in town, and a house that’s not ready. Your just-turned-three-year old, however, has been literally dragging her feet despite the little carousel … Continued

Managing a Challenging Manager

This post was originally published on March 25, 2013. Friends, A wonderful recent college grad was seeking advice … about how to give advice.  Her organization is one that’s trying to do the right thing by giving the front line (where she is) lots of feedback AND asking for lots of feedback from them to … Continued

What’s With Leading Up?

I originally published this column in 2008 and got almost 80 reader responses. Thought it worth sharing with some minor revisions… Do you make anything of this? Last Monday I wrote about “managing up.” I got only 4 blog comments, three of which were random attacks on the Governor that were unrelated to my column. … Continued

Moving the authority – whether you’re the #2 or the #rebel

Hannah, my great TA and I are in the middle of reading eight cases a week of “leadership breakdowns.” The fact-patterns are diverse but a handful of themes continually recur. These student cases are strikingly similar to “real life” adult cases, including breakdowns I have personally wrestled with as a manager, and many more breakdowns … Continued

How should you say – or should you say – I Quit

How should you say – or should you say – I Quit Friends, Smith’s first name is Greg.  He spent 12 years at Goldman Sachs, where he says he “had the privilege of advising two of the largest hedge funds on the planet, five of the largest asset managers in the United States, and three of … Continued

Two Resources for Dealing with the Bad Boss

 Two Resources for Dealing with the Bad Boss Friends, Last week I wrote about how we unfairly take shots at authorities, and on the other hand how authority figures foolishly and frequently shoot the messenger.  Today I’m writing specifically for those who report to a boss they really can’t stand (or for those who know … Continued

Manage the Manager

I shouldn’t have been surprised that Meryl Runion, who has a series of books on “power phrases” and a website called www.speakstrong.com would shoot right straight to the red dot in the center of the target. She did, as I was interviewing her this past week on the topic of ASSERTIVENESS.  (The show and twenty-five … Continued

You Can Lead Up

Friends, I came at it from a bunch of different angles on Saturday. Topic: How do you get heard? I interviewed a radio producer to see just how the successful supplicants managed to get on JP McCarthy’s morning drive time show. I talked to Lindsay a PR student as MSU about the tactics she’s using … Continued