Humility as a Leadership Trait

By: Jim Bruce
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This week’s Tuesday Reading is an entry –  “Humility as a Leadership Trait”– from John Baldoni’s Harvard Business Publishing blog.

Baldoni asserts, and I agree, that leaders who want to inspire followers need to demonstrate both their accomplishments and their character.  Key to demonstrating character is being humble.  And, humility is essential to leadership because it authenticates a person’s humanity.

The article suggests three ways a leader can demonstrate humility:

How to Give a Lousy Presentation

By: Jim Bruce
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This week’s Tuesday Reading is from BusinessWeek’s August 25, 2009 Communications Column:  “How to Give a Lousy Presentation”. 

We all make a lot of presentations.  And, I know that you are like me and know that you are able to do better most of the time.  This piece gives you 15 excellent ways to make a lousy presentation.  It thereby gives each of us a set of solid reminders for all of us.

You're a Success, Now Get Down to Work

By: Jim Bruce
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For this week’s Tuesday Reading, we turn to the Career Strategies Column in the Wall Street Journal for a short piece “You’re a Success, Now Get Down to work”.

Near the end of this piece, its author Alexandra Levit writes:  “Just because you’re skilled or talented in a particular area doesn’t mean you should simply pass go and collect your $200.”  Or, as Marshall Goldsmith puts it, “Strong leaders don’t coast.”

So what do you need to do:

The Success Trap

By: Jim Bruce
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Today's Tuesday Reading is “The Success Trap”, from Jeffrey Pfeffer's August 25th,  BNET Column, The Corner Officer on August 25, 2009.

Pfeffer’s thesis is simple:  When we become successful, it is very easy to drop our guard, to not maintain our standards (much less build on them), and to rest on our laurals.

He argues that to maintain our successes we have to understand the basis of our success and maintain a laserlike focus, discipling ourselves to maintain, and even improve, on what made us successful to begin with.

The Leader of the Future

By: Jim Bruce
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For today’s reading, we turn to a December 2007 FastCompany article by William Taylor, The Leader of the Future.  In this piece Taylor, one of the founders of FastCompany, reports on a discussion with Ron Heifetz, director of the Leadership Education Project at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.  You will likely remember that Heifetz is author of one of the views of leadership we studied early in the l

How to Make People Passionate About Their Work

By: Jim Bruce
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For today’s reading we turn to John Baldoni’s blog at the Harvard Business Review for his piece “How to Make People Passionate About Their Work”.  

Baldoni notes that generating passion for what you do is essential, and doubly so in difficult times.  He goes on to say that it is essential for a leader to have passion as it is vital to convincing others that their work matters.

He offers three suggestions for cultivating passion:

How to Identify Employee's Hidden Talents

By: Jim Bruce
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There’s lots of advice on finding and attracting staff and on identifying and retaining top performers you already have.  Stephen DeMaio, in a recent blog entry – “How to Identify Employees’ Hidden Talents” – argues that it is even more important to look for your current staff's hidden strengths to find new skills and talents that have value to the organization.

DeMano suggests four approaches:

How Do Effective Leaders Handle Change?

By: Jim Bruce
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It seems like every week I hear of universities planning for, going through, or having recently experienced layoffs, terminations, or position eliminations as a result of the economic crisis we are experiencing.  Today’s reading – “Ask the Expert:  How Do Effective Leaders Handle Change?” -- is by Mark Hannum, Principle Consultant at Linkage and looks at practices that enable leaders to be more effective in such tough times.   

Hannum talks in this short piece about many aspects of layoffs and offers a number of specific suggestions:

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