Valuable Insights for Today's Leaders
Customer-facing employees must possess emotional intelligence
How will a front-line customer-facing employee react in a volatile situation with a customer? They will fall back on their experiences, emotional intelligence, common sense and good critical judgment to defuse the situation.
Will Norfolk Southern board hold CEO Alan Shaw accountable for avoiding derailments?
It’s up to the boards and CEOs of railroads to change their mindsets and recognize that they need to be on a mission critical journey to eliminate derailments. Practically, zero derailments will not be achieved, but that needs to be the goal.
Be more effective when presenting capital projects for approval with these tips
The best way to communicate verbally or in writing is to put yourself in the place of the intended audience and ask yourself how you would like to receive the information. Too many people don’t consider this, and it hurts their ability to effectively communicate what they are trying to say.
Does Norfolk Southern consider derailment avoidance a mission critical imperative?
The Feb. 3 derailment of a Norfolk Southern freight train in the village of East Palestine, Ohio raises the question—does Norfolk Southern consider avoidance of derailments to be mission critical? The airline and auto industries approach safety as a mission critical imperative. The railroad industry should have the same mindset.
Philadelphia mayoral candidates should look at New York’s blueprint to reduce violent crime
What do Philadelphia’s mayoral candidates plan to do about crime? Their approaches run the gamut and lack detail. I have yet to hear the approach that all candidates should pursue—benchmark other cities that have had success in reducing crime. The future livability of our city depends on it.
The Philadelphia Eagles are in the Super Bowl for one simple reason — they hired the right people
What lessons for all organizations does the Eagles’ success demonstrate? Jim Collins in his iconic leadership book “Good to Great” was right when he wrote, “[Get] the right people on the bus (and the wrong people off the bus).” Hire the right people. You won’t regret the money you spend to do so. Paraphrasing Collins, the right people will take your organization someplace great.
Build competitive advantage through a culture of continuous improvement
If you are looking for a sustainable initiative to build competitive advantage, look no further than the culture of continuous improvement. Companies that do not continually improve will fall behind. Those that do continuously improve will win the competitive race in the long run.
Are Elon Musk and Steve Jobs good examples on how to lead?
Musk and Jobs can be described as visionaries. I doubt that the leaders reporting to them would tolerate working for an autocrat and being micromanaged if, unlike Tesla and Apple, the company lacked the ‘cool factor” and didn’t produce inspiring widgets that change the world. Musk and Jobs are outliers—they are unique. Learn from and emulate them, without adopting the negative aspects of their leadership styles.
George Santos should be held to the highest standards of ethics and integrity
All lawmakers must be held to the highest standards of ethics and integrity. I like the standard to which Warren Buffett held the employees of Salomon Brothers when he served as interim CEO: “Lose money for the firm, and I will be understanding. Lose a shred of reputation for the firm, and I will be ruthless.”
Southwest Airlines meltdown is a lesson in mission critical failure
The Southwest Airlines meltdown is a lesson for all organizations. Determine what is mission critical and pursue a strategy to ensure that the mission can be fulfilled regardless of external adverse factors. Do you know what is mission critical for your company and can the mission still be fulfilled when events go south?
What Coach Ted Lasso can teach us about leadership
“Be someone that people want to follow,” and lead in a way that “makes everyone on your team feel like they matter.” The leadership philosophy and principles practiced by Coach Ted Lasso are universal. They transcend professions. Follow them and you will be successful leading your organization.
Achieve success by following these ‘first principles’ of leadership
The first two principles of effective leadership: Be someone people want to follow. Lead in a way that makes everyone on your team feel like they matter. As we enter 2023, we should all be guided by what I identify as “first principles” of leadership. Unfortunately, many leaders in business, nonprofits and politics miss the mark.
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