How to Stop the Blame Game

By: Jim Bruce

Today’s reading “How to Stop the Blame Game” is by Nathanael Fast, assistant professor of Management and Organization at USC’s Marshall School of Business.  It appeared in the May research blog of the Harvard Business Review.

Fast points back to the recent “grilling” of three oil company executives by U.S. Senate committees.  He noted that the executives “fell over each other in attempts to shift the blame.” And, that “No one was impressed.”

Is Your Leadership Developing or Diminishing?

By: Jim Bruce

A few weeks ago Angela Bell from the University of Iowa shared Dan Bobinski’s article “Is your leadership developing or diminishing?” with her cohort and now I’d like to share it with everyone.

As Bobinski, a training specialist, author, and president of Associates at Leadership Development, indicates, too many leaders easily get caught up in the immediate and forget, or neglect, the important.  

Give Feedback with Video

By: Jim Bruce

One of my sons acquired a new Flip MinoHD digital camcorder just before Thanksgiving.  This gave all the family ample opportunity to appear in living color and HD.  And, as I watched myself later on the video, I realized that what others were seeing was not what I necessarily expected or, in many cases, wanted them to see.

How Team Leaders Show Support – or Not

By: Jim Bruce

For today’s Tuesday Reading, we turn to a Harvard Business School Working Knowledge Q&A – “How Team Leaders Show Support – or Not”– with HBS faculty member Teresa Anabile.

Though from 2004, the findings remain valid.  Professor Anabile’s research points to two key concepts for leaders who want to gain their staff’s confidence:

1.  Perceptions of team leader support are more positive when the leader

     - gives timely feedback

     - support the team member’s actions and decisions

Learning to Accept Criticism

By: Jim Bruce

One of the topics we discuss in the IT Leaders Program is giving and receiving both positive and negative feedback.  In today's reading "Learning to Accept Criticism", John Baldoni reinforces the importance of giving and receiving  criticism noting that they are essential leadership capabilities.  He then gives several helpful suggestions:

  -  Know your facts -- if you are going to criticize your boss (and for that matter anyone), you'd better get it right.

Virtual Communications

By: Jim Bruce

One of the things that is becoming more important to all of us is

"virtual communication," whether one-on-one or with teams.  Some of

us are old hands at this, others are still learning.  I've copied

below three recent columns on the subject from Point Lookout, a free

weekly email newsletter produced by Chaco Canyon Consulting.  I've

found the columns to be direct, usually insightful, and often quite

helpful. (Back issues of the newsletter can be found at


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