Articles


Managing Self


What’s the Code of Your Ethics?

“Divorced from ethics, leadership is reduced to management and politics to mere technique.” – James MacGregor Burns As an everyday leader, you make hundreds of decisions a week, big and small. Know it or not, your actions and interactions are being guided by a code of conduct, your organization’s, your culture’s and your own. What’s […]

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The Artful Apology

If you’re trying hard, learning and doing your job, you’re going to make mistakes. If you’re taking any kind of initiative at all, you’re going to step on toes. If you’re changing how things work, you’re going to hurt feelings, and, if you’re making consequential decisions, you’re going to overlook unintended consequences.  Therefore, as a […]

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Lake Wobegon at Work

As if there weren’t enough external threats to your business and your job, here’s an internal one you might not have recognized because of its slow emergence. It’s the Lake-Wobegon Syndrome, and you might have caught the virus yourself. “Welcome to Lake Wobegon, where all the women are strong, all the men are good-looking, and […]

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Who’s the Boss?

Even with the down economy and shortage of jobs, the workforce of today resembles true volunteers more than ever before. They don’t have to work for you. They’re planning to leave, and they’re motivated primarily by self-interest, personal goals, aspirations and interests.  While the concept may be shocking, it’s nothing new; it’s just magnified by […]

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Decision Deadfalls (part 3 of 3)

It’s understandable for managers to make snap decisions and true that they are sometimes absolutely necessary, but not good to make them a habit. See why: Managers have enough pitfalls, mistakes and dead ends to avoid in their daily work that they don’t need to fall into the most common decision-making traps, which I call […]

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Decision Deadfalls (part 2 of 3)

While group decision-making can be the best way to solve problems in some cases, successful managers need to know when to use it and how to manage the process well.  Deadfalls are animal traps used outdoors to snare or kill prey in survival situations, while decision deadfalls are traps that unsuspecting managers can fall into. Both […]

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Decision Deadfalls (part 1 of 3)

As the saying goes, “Hindsight is 20/20,” which helps to illustrates an important point about the difference between “good” and “bad” decisions. Here are three of the deadly decision deadfalls that await all managers but especially inexperienced, unaware or naïve managers just trying to do their jobs:  A “deadfall” is a trap sometimes used in wilderness survival to […]

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Intelligent Ain’t Always Smart (part 2 of 2)

This blog is for intelligent people who want to be smarter. You can do that in one of three ways! While we’d all like to be smart and intelligent, we’re usually more one than the other. But we really need to be both.  Intelligent people tend to be better strategic thinkers but have a hard […]

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Intelligent Ain’t Always Smart (part 1 of 2)

Would you rather be intelligent or smart? You think they’d be the same thing right? See why I would disagree!  As a leadership coach and trainer, I meet a lot of intelligent people, but they aren’t always smart, and some smart people that aren’t always intelligent. Which one are you?  Intelligent people often have high […]

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Neighborliness

A little something to appreciate all your neighbors, from the words of my grandfather.  The response was so great to last week’s poems by my grandfather with lessons in life and leadership that I’m sharing a few more this week to compliment the Holidays.  These are among hundreds of poems passed down through my family […]

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Somethin’ Else to Do

So glad you all enjoyed a little bit of my history last week! This week I will share some more writings from my grandfather with you!  The response was so great to last week’s poems by my grandfather with lessons in life and leadership that I’m sharing a few more this week to compliment the […]

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A Free Ride

I am sharing of some lessons in life and leadership passed down among hundreds of poems through my family to yours.  At this time of Thanksgiving and the Holidays, this blog series is a tribute to my grandfather, Robert Harsha Davidson, and a sharing of some lessons in life and leadership passed down among hundreds […]

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The Departed Hour

At this time of Thanksgiving and the Holidays, this blog series is a tribute to my grandfather. At this time of Thanksgiving and the Holidays, this blog series is a tribute to my grandfather, Robert Harsha Davidson, and a sharing of some lessons in life and leadership passed down among hundreds of poems through my […]

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Your Boss

In this blog series, I share with you some poems from my grandfather, passed down and on. Hope you enjoy!  At this time of Thanksgiving and the Holidays, this blog series is a tribute to my grandfather, Robert Harsha Davidson, and a sharing of some lessons in life and leadership passed down among hundreds of […]

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Pushing Consensus Uphill

As a leader and a manager, you will need to make difficult decisions, students of leadership have no shortage of examples to study from the U.S. Government these days, most of them bad, and this week has been no exception. Students of leadership have no shortage of examples to study from the U.S. Government these […]

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The NATURE of Leadership Development (blog 3 of 3)

The previous two blogs discussed the leaders’s root system and growth rings. In this blog, we’ll discuss the third component of the analogy — the branches. As we’ve been discussing in this blog series, the healthy growth of forests give us a useful analogy for thinking about our own growth and development as leaders. Here […]

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The NATURE of Leadership Development (blog 2 of 3)

The growth patterns of trees and forests provide useful analogies about the growth of leaders. I kid you not! Read more below! The growth patterns of trees and forests provide useful analogies about the growth of leaders. This blog series uses three components of tree biology to convey several memorable principles that everyday leaders can […]

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The NATURE of Leadership Development (blog 1 of 3)

Leadership is very much like a growing tree. Confused? See what I mean here: As a forester, I often use analogies and metaphors from my natural resources background to make points about leadership, teamwork and change. For example, the growth of a tree provides a useful analogy for what leaders need to think about and […]

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The Ladder of Arrogance (part 3 of 3)

Being proud (confident), “but not arrogant,” is the subject of this blog series, and as we’ve been discussing, there is more than a fine line between the two states. In the final installment, I look at the role of arrogance. Successful leaders learn to strike an ambiguous balance in many parts of their work. Jim […]

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The Ladder of Arrogance (part 2 of 3)

Egotism is a blind spot, so if you have it, you are unlikely to know it. See if you can relate below or find out how to deal with those who are egotistical! A leader can never have too much confidence, but the daily news is filled with stories about derailed executives, athletes, and politicians […]

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