Friday, 31 July 2009

Five Practices of Exemplary Leaders: How to?

How to...

Model the Way - Clarify values by finding your voice and affirming shared ideas. Set the example by aligning actions with shared values.

Inspire a Shared Vision - Envision the future by imagining exciting and ennobling possibilities. Enlist others in a common vision by appealing to shared aspirations.

Challenge the Process - Search for opportunities by seizing the initiative and by looking outward for innovative ways to improve. Experiment and take risks by constantly generating small wins and learning from experience.

Enable Others to Act - Foster collaboration by building trust and facilitating relationships. Strengthen others by increasing self-determination and developing competence.

Encourage the Heart - Recognize contributions by showing appreciation for individual excellence. Celebrate the values and victories by creating a spirit of community.

Source: Robert H. Thompson

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

Five Practices of Exemplary Leaders

Your credibility matters so... Model the Way

Your voice matters so... Inspire a Shared Vision

Your action matters so... Challenge the Process

Your gift matters so... Enable Others to Act

Your gratitude matters... Encourage the Heart

Source: The Offsite, Robert H. Thompson

More of the how later...

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Curiosity and Diversity

It's more useful to cultivate curiosity rather than certainty. It's not easy to stay open, but when we listen to diversity rather than expecting agreement, we can learn that no two people see the world exactly the same.

Source: Margaret J. Wheatley

Thursday, 23 July 2009

Ability, Motivation, and Attitude

"Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it." Raymond Chandler


Wednesday, 22 July 2009

The butterfly, a transformational journey of Spirit

As we all know, butterflies start out as caterpillars, then go into a cocoon (chrysalis), only to emerge with beautiful colors, and wings to fly. What we may not know, or always remember, is what happens in the cocoon. Inside, far from curious eyes, an incredible process takes place. The caterpillar quite literally dissolves into a sort of primal ooze, a real mess. And then, following directions coded somewhere in that mess, the raw protoplasm re-aggregates, and what was once a crawling beastie now has the hardware to fly.

Put somewhat differently, and probably not in accord with the best biological thinking, the caterpillar goes to its essence (we might say Spirit) and then reforms, or better, transforms, to a totally new way of being. It is a journey from form, to nothingness, to new form. And there is no way of getting from caterpillar to butterfly except by passing through the void.

Source: Harrison Owen

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Chaos and Open Space - Chaos and Learning

Chaos represents the growth point in any system. Chaos creates the Open Space in which the new can emerge. Obviously there are no guarantees here, for chaos can equally mark the end - in fact is always does. The central question is not about the ending, but rather the possibility of new beginning. Chaos may therefore be the essential precondition for all that is the truly new. No chaos, nothing new.

Gregory Bateson teaches us that the perception of difference is the essence of learning. Or in hos words, learning occurs when we notice "differences that make a difference." This deceptively simple phrase takes us in interesting directions, for it suggests, in the present context, that the function of chaos is to create the conditions in which real learning can take place.

Chaos creates the differences that make a difference, through which we learn.

Source: Harrison Owen

Monday, 20 July 2009


Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams - who looks inside, awakes.

Saturday, 18 July 2009

The Four Fires

Universally, fire is regarded as a spiritual symbol of awakening.It is also a purifying force that can be constructive or destructive, depending on our use if it. Many sacred texts speak of fire as a symbol of the vital life force that can be called upon for transformation, re-visioning, or the transmission of renewed meaning.

Traditionally, the four fires that these sacred texts refer to are:

The fire of vision provides visions or dreams that show us the possibilities and potential in our lives, inspiring us to manifest what we see or are called upon to do.

The fire of the heart teaches us about what and whom we love.

The creative fire signals the work that we love, a keen awareness of our gifts, and our desire to express them as a way of contributing to the world.

The soul's fire calls us to be authentically who we are and serve others rather than our own ego.

We encounter these fires throughout our lives, and during our later years, we need to reconnect to them so that we can experience what truly inspires us.

Source: Angeles Arrien
Photo: Dominique Normand, 2008

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Uncovering the True Face

Withdraw into yourself and look. And if you do not find yourself beautiful yet, act as does the creator of a statue that is to be made beautiful: he cuts away here, he smoothes there, he makes this line lighter, this other purer, until a lovely face has grown upon his work. So do you also: cut away all that is excessive, straighten all that is crooked, bring light to all that is overcast, labor to make all one glow of beauty and never cease chiseling your statue, until there shall shine out on you from it the godlike splendor of virtue, until you shall see the perfect goodness surely established in the stainless shrine.

Source: Plotius, The Enneads

This is what I call developing a practice! Be the creator of your statue.

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

Leadership Quotes

Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things. Peter F. Drucker

Don't tell people how to do things, tell them what to do and let them surprise you with their results. George S. Patton

The leadership instinct you are born with is the backbone. You develop the funny bone and the wishbone that go with it. Elaine Agather

Leadership is the art of getting someone else to do something you want done because he wants to do it. Dwight Eisenhower

The very essence of leadership is that you have to have vision. You can't blow an uncertain trumpet. Theodore M. Hesburgh

Saturday, 11 July 2009

Kevin Eikenberry's Best Leadership Blogs of 2009

Kevin Eikenberry has announced the Best of Leadership Blogs on the Internet.

Leading Blog by Michael McKinney

Great Leadership by Dan McCarthy

Seth Godin’s Blog by Seth Godin

Jon Gordon’s Blog by Jon Gordon

Leadership is a Verb
by John Bishop

All Things Workplace by Steve Roesler

Work Matters by Bob Sutton

Leader Talk by Mountain State University

Next Level Blog by Scott Eblin

Leadership At Work by John Baldoni

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Social Media Programs in Recession Time

As organizations invest in social media programs, incorporating this shift into the plans should be considered a high priority. Skeptics might say that a more customer-centric approach is natural in a recession when business is scarce. But a recession is not just a time of slow sales. More significantly, it is also a time when the pace of change accelerates, and the competitive landscape of industries is reshaped.

Source: EMarketer

Tuesday, 7 July 2009

Today's Mandala


Wednesday, 1 July 2009

Be kind to yourself

We can be pretty hard to ourselves at work. A lot is expected of us, and measuring up to expectations puts pressure on us to perform. We want to be seen as competent and capable - and then we have to live up to our own aspirations. Tight timetables, complex challenges, risky decisions, and much more can keep us going at a pace that is just asking too much. "Be kind to yourself" suggests that we lighten up a bit, that we slow down and treat ourselves decently.

The basics of being kind to yourself is simply "having a cup of tea." We can do so quite literally - taking a break and enjoying a cup of tea, savoring the flavors and aroma, perhaps with a cookie or a cracker and cheese. We slow down, and give ourselves an open moment where we can appreciate the world around us with no agenda. Whether it's a tea break, a stroll at the local park, or a moment at the water cooler, being kind to ourselves at its most basic level invites us to deliberately step away from the pace of work and enjoy the simple pleasures of being alive.

Source: Michael Carroll