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Distorted Perceptions

Perception: Disconnects, Distortions and Deficiencies We often hear that seeing is believing, but should we always believe what we see? Our distorted perceptions can be superficial and unduly influenced by past experiences.  Architects, IT professionals and security personnel can “see” the same office, but what registers and remains with them varies significantly.  We see through…

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Are You Rewarding A While Requiring B?

Reward Systems I decided on my doctoral thesis topic after reading Steven Kerr’s 1975 article, The Folly of Rewarding A When Hoping for B, in the Academy of Management Journal (volume 18, pps.769-782). In the decades since this published, one might assume that organizations revised their reward systems to match their current strategy. Unfortunately, many…

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Invisible Fences: Limiting Constraints

My neighbor’s dogs explore their backyard but within constrained boundaries. An invisible fence limits them. If they stray beyond the specified area their collar provides either an electrical stimulus or a vibration to restrain them.   It only takes a few of these shocking experiences before the dog recognizes how to remain secure.  Likewise, leaders or…

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Top Ten Leadership Skills for 2020

Leaders need to continually polish their talents, and sometimes also their resume. We all recognize that organizations are changing, new challenges are surfacing and competition is increasing. What does that mean for those of us in the workplace? In January 2016 the World Economic Forum issued their Future of Jobs report to update their 2015 analysis.…

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Revitalizing Sluggish Decision Making Practices

Organizations often respond to accelerating change with slower decision making. CEB’s study of 3,000 business leaders found that 63% of executive felt decision making was too slow. Making the right decision is not guaranteed by slow decision making practices. Certainly the increased complexity decisions complexity leaders begs for careful analysis, however, this research study found…

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Sound Bites Can Bite

Are you using Sound Bites to Communicate? Advertisers use sound bites to capture attention and promote interest. Recently our leaders both political and non-political adopted the use of clever snippets that might be witty but they are not clear. In fact, they often produce confusion, rather than dispel it. A catchy phrase may entertain, but…

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Is Your Core Problem Your Core Issue?

Stick to your knitting guidance offers many benefits, but also snares many into stagnate thinking. Developing a strong core is vital to both your in business and personal health. However, strict adherence to a core-only mentality often leads to narrow thinking, which can result in undue reinforcement of existing patterns, squelching innovation and avoiding diversification.…

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What Bridge Taught Me About Leadership

First let me clarify that I am not a great bridge player. I will never strive to play duplicate bridge or play with Warren Buffet or Bill Gates. Nevertheless, I like the games’ challenge and its practical leadership lessons. While finite with the number of cards, players and rules, it is also dynamic and complex.…

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Fox Hunting: Why We Need More than Hedgehog Leaders

We traditionally reward Hedgehog leaders who excel in a specialized area.  In fact most of our career paths are tailored for specialized knowledge.  Their expertise clearly produces value by digging into and sometimes creating new pursuits opens opportunities.  But what is being overlooked is the need for Fox leaders with a breadth of knowledge, the ability to see…

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Three Dimensions of Leadership Development

People, Process and Priorities THE STUDY OF LEADERSHIP traditionally starts by focusing on the leader’s personal awareness of themselves and their style in interacting with others. From first line to top line executives, mastering yourself and your interactions permits effective communication, clear performance expectations and teamwork. The second stage concentrates on process knowledge and skills…

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Patricia Raskin Interview

Recently, Dr. Mary Lippitt was interviewed by Patricia Raskin on Voice America. Dr. Lippitt talks about how knowing priorities can help to clarify goal alignment, bring decision making criteria into focus, and improve communication. In addition, by learning the Spectrum of Profiles, individuals can learn how to more effectively influence others and how to improve…

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When is it Smart to go Against the Flow?

Does this sound familiar? You’re with your team in a conference, the leader puts the big idea on the table, no one speaks and then one person agrees. Before you know it you’ve all agreed, only to learn later that many had unexpressed concerns. What went wrong? No on wants to go against the flow.…

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Top 4 Mistakes Women Make in the Workplace

The road to the C-suite is littered with well-meaning, well-qualified workers who never quite get there. So what is the difference-maker? Executive coach and consultant Dr. Mary Lippitt has worked with hundreds of leaders, from Fortune 500 executives to top Pentagon officials, and she’s conducted research on thousands of people to study how they make choices.…

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