Are they values if we don’t follow them?

A few posts ago, I wrote, “Is a value really a value if one doesn’t always practice it?” In hindsight, I can’t believe I asked such a naive question. We’re humans. And therefore, we’re fallible. So of course we’re going to fail to live up to our values some of the time. This includes organizations as well as individuals. While I …

gljudson Leadership, Values

The value of values

Did that title turn you off? I understand. Values are an eye-roller for many people. Organizational leaders love to create their core-values lists, but … how real are they? And when it’s just a bunch of nice-to-have / wish-we-followed words framed on the wall, who can blame people for rolling their eyes? Especially when we witness the mis-alignment between those nice …

gljudson Leadership, Values

Don’t follow me, I’m lost too!

A colleague, having read my recent post “Leadership, Power, and Conflict,” shared his definition of leadership with me. “A leader is someone who has followers.” He added, “So, if you want to be a leader, you need to do two things: (1) Pick a direction and (2) Get people to follow you.” Simple, thought-provoking, and  eye-opening, this demands that we ask ourselves: in …

gljudson Leadership

Leadership, power, and conflict

I know someone who equates leadership with power-over, and vehemently rebels at any sign that his business partner wants to encroach on his territory or take an active leadership role in their business. (I’ll call him James.) I once worked with someone who didn’t have and didn’t want an official leadership title, but who by the simple force of her personality, intelligence, and insight was a powerful thought leader …

gljudson Leadership

Don’t clothe the skeleton!

“So, I’m going to tell them that I know this has been hard for them. I understand how the disagreements we’ve been having have triggered a lot of unpleasant memories of things that went badly wrong under past leadership. For instance, I know Sam really feels – ” “Wait! Stop!” I said. My client and I were planning an upcoming meeting …

gljudson Leadership, Real communication

The perils of insider perspective

My sweetheart and I walk together most weekday mornings. It’s a few miles, takes us a little less than an hour, and pushes us to physical limits as we first descend, and then climb, some pretty tough hills. It starts us off right in so many ways, including the time to talk about what the day holds for each of us in …

gljudson Leadership

The missing link for real success

You’ve made sure everyone understands your organization’s mission, vision, and objectives. They know their individual goals and they understand their job descriptions and responsibilities. That’s great. And it’s not enough to inspire individuals and teams to their best performance. If it were enough, there would be no lack of follow-through on decisions, no actions out of alignment with the vision, no misinterpretation of …

gljudson Leadership, Real communication

Leadership … with love

A couple of Saturdays ago, my sweetheart Arthur and I were talking business. (One of our many points of compatability is a shared passion for business geekery!) Having attended a leadership conference the day before, I asked him for his definition of leadership. (I believe leadership skills can be taught, and I also believe that, just like anything, certain people have a special …

gljudson Leadership

The art of asking good questions

It’s one thing to have the courage to ask for help, as I mentioned in my last post about Amanda Palmer’s book The Art of Asking. It’s something else again to be able to form a question that actually elicits helpful answers. We’ve been discussing this in my Facebook group, the Clarity Kitchen, and there have been some interesting and insightful comments. …

gljudson Leadership, Success

The Art of Asking: Amanda Palmer

The Art of Asking, by musician/writer Amanda Palmer, hit the bookstores just before the holidays last year. Having watched her TED talk months before, I knew I wanted to read the book. I did not expect to have an addition to my Must Read list for business owners. And yet, here we are: this is a Must Read. You don’t have …

gljudson Leadership