Who’s in Your Canoe? 5 Things to Consider When Building a New Team

I’m building a new team; who should be on it? Often we just inherit the teams we lead, but occasionally we have the opportunity to build a new team from scratch.  How do you know who to pick?    Here are five action steps you can take when building a new team that will give […]

Optimization: Surprising Lessons in Efficiency from the Ant World

Optimization - Surprising Lessons in Efficiency From the Ant World

“How can you optimize a system that’s error-prone?” As humans, we are fallable.  In our efforts to achieve, produce, and progress, we make mistakes, we misjudge, we stumble. Any enterprise that involves humans will, by definition, be imperfect.  But is that really such a bad thing?  When it comes to optimization and effiency, there are […]

Leadership Mistakes: 3 Things to Do When You Really Step In It

Leadership Mistakes - 3 Things to Do When You Really Step In It

What should a leader do when they make a mistake? Nobody likes to “step in it,” but leadership mistakes will happen.  What you do when they occur makes all the difference. Do these three things well, and you may end up with a stronger team than you started with.

Skills for the Introverted Leader: 6 Ways to Expand Your Comfort Zone

Skills for the Introverted Leader - Six Ways to Expand Your Comfort Zone

What skills does an introverted leader need to develop? Statistically, about half of us tend towards introversion (I’m definitely one of them).  That fact doesn’t exclude us from being effective leaders. In fact, many of the traits associated with introversion are actually strengths for someone who wants to lead well.  Often, we can lead very […]

How to Tell if You Are Sinking or Swimming as a Leader

How to Tell if You are Sinking or Swimming as a Leader

How can 80% of people believe themselves to be above average leaders? One of the many challenges of being a leader is knowing how well we are doing.  Are we sinking or swimming? It can be hard to really know, and yet knowing is the key to becoming better at it. As I was surprised […]

Leading Volunteers: How to Keep Them Coming Back

Leading Volunteers - How to Keep Them Coming Back

How do you lead people who aren’t on your payroll? Since moving to Minnesota, I’ve wanted to get engaged locally as a volunteer.  Last month I signed up to help at a local agency, and it was a great experience. The way they worked with the volunteers made it fun, productive and has had me […]

Stop Social Loafing: 6 Ways to Get Everyone Working

Stop Social Loafing - 6 Ways to Get Everyone Working

How come 1+1+1 does not equal 3? You would think that the more people on a project, the greater the output.  Sadly, that’s not always the case.  A phenomenon called Social Loafing leads some team members to do the minimum possible.  They drag down group productivity like a boat anchor. Today we’ll look at why […]

On Duty: The Meaning of Leadership in a Risk-Filled World

On Duty - Leadership in a Risk-Filled World

She is a jet pilot, Ph.D., federal agent, and Amazon best-selling author.  And she is a leader. L.B. Johnson assumed her duties as a law enforcement agent at about the same time the Twin Towers were falling in New York.  In a world often dominated by the male of the species, she was not just […]

Is Your Team Due for a Spring Cleaning?

Team Spring Cleaning

There’s something about “new.”  Somehow the idea of new gives energy, enthusiasm, focus.  Yet so often we find ourselves stuck in “old.”  Same job, same house, same routine. Just as winter transitions to spring and the world outside renews itself, maybe it’s time to look at your leadership and your team and take a moment […]

Spotlight the Support

Spotlight the Support

My daughter is a big fan of Lin Manuel Miranda, the creator of Hamilton.  She was home on spring break recently, so we took her to see an earlier production of his:  In the Heights. Our seats were good, the actors were talented, the lyrics were clever, and at the end the crowd gave the […]