Five Leadership Gifts from George H.W. Bush

Author Steve Wood on far right Last week many Americans paid their final respects to George H.W. Bush, our 41st President. I had a very high regard for President Bush, as many people here in the seacoast of New Hampshire and Maine did. Thousands of we locals met him, as I did four times including when I played one hole of golf with him a few decades ago. Our daughter, Alie, has fond memories of serving he and Mrs. Bush when working at Foster’s Downeast Clambake, a Maine business owned by our friend Kevin Tacy, who did a [...]

By |2018-12-13T10:04:12+00:00December 13th, 2018|Credibility & Inspiration, Leadership, Uncategorized|

Job Quitting is a Symptom of Low Resiliency

One of the problems with low-unemployment is that young workers find it too easy to quit and find another job. What they do not understand is that quality employers recognize this pattern as a symptom of low resiliency and often pass on hiring them. Photo by REUTERS/Brian Snyder At least that used to be the case. Many employers are getting so desperate today they ignore this symptom and hire candidates knowing they might be short-term solutions. And, of course, all this does is enable the low-resiliency job jumpers unless you add resiliency-building to your work culture. What Can [...]

By |2018-11-30T11:12:24+00:00November 30th, 2018|Human Behavior, Leadership Lessons, Learning Styles & Skills|

Tell Me a Story Why You Work Here

In a moment I have a connection challenge for you. Workshops on storytelling and writing narratives are very popular for leaders right now. Why? Because good stories create human connection. Better connections with team members help us inspire and retain them. Creating a connection with a candidate can make all the difference in recruitment. Our Love of Stories. Our company is in its 37th year and most of our senior team has been together for between 20 and 25 years. I believe one of our cultural threads is that we are open, we like each other, and we can laugh [...]

By |2018-11-16T09:06:18+00:00November 15th, 2018|Credibility & Inspiration, Leadership|

Walt Disney Never Saw Obstacles Only Opportunities

I think it is a good time to celebrate entrepreneurs because without them the world would be a far darker and undeveloped place. Since this month The Walt Disney Company will celebrate both Mickey Mouse’s 90th birthday and Disney World’s 55th anniversary, I thought it would be a perfect time to revisit the life of Walt Disney, arguably the world’s most creative entrepreneur. Mickey Mouse continues to be one of the top one or two best known characters in the world and is the image most closely connected to Disney. What many people don’t know is that Disney is the [...]

By |2018-11-08T11:35:37+00:00November 8th, 2018|Entrepreneurship / Innovation|

Honestly, Are You Trustworthy?

It seems like no one trusts anyone today. Have you recently asked yourself if you are trustworthy? This week on Halloween, my colleague, Marcia, told me how she was listening to the radio and the DJs were focused on how we should start “tricking” little kids. They recommended we suck out the peanut butter in Reese’s peanut butter cups and replace it with spicy, hot sauce. While funny to older teenagers and 20-year-olds, I’m sure, this will not build trust in little kids. Today trustworthiness seems to be a fading attribute even as everything we read about leadership and teams [...]

By |2018-11-01T16:59:08+00:00November 1st, 2018|Leadership, Leadership Lessons|

Leaders Beware – Google Done Taught Me Everything I Know

I have been a defendant in only one court case. Sadly, that case contributed to my loss of interest in teaching college and is directly related to today’s topic. I’ll tell you that story later. When our founding leaders formed the United States, they wrestled with this paradox – How to protect individual rights and protect individuals from themselves. Well-educated in the history of mankind, these founders knew that humans are naturally social beings and very susceptible to going along with the crowd. They worried how misguided crowds could destroy the great country they envisioned. One social trend that really [...]

By |2018-10-19T09:43:05+00:00October 18th, 2018|Just Plain Interesting, Learning Styles & Skills, Uncategorized|

A Few Reasons We All Lie

Yes, we all tell lies even though we don’t like to admit it. And I think the worst lies are the ones we tell ourselves because they often do the most damage to others – quite often unintentionally. On Sunday a rather odd, but timely, thing happened to me. Right after I watched a mother deal with a six-year old child who had told her a lie, I spotted a June 2017 National Geographic magazine on a shelf. On the cover were the words Why We Lie. Of course I was intrigued. In my Blog last week Remember One Thing [...]

By |2018-10-04T08:38:59+00:00October 4th, 2018|Bullies & Misbehavior, Human Behavior|

Remember One Thing You Have in Common with Ford and Kavanaugh

Photo by Quinten deGraaf Today the Senate will have a hearing that will explore an allegation by Christine Ford involving Judge Brett Kavanaugh. Did you know you have something in common with them that you should think about as you listen to their testimony? More about that in a moment. One of my favorite writers is Malcolm Gladwell and now he has a podcast called Revisionist History, which I highly recommend. Recently he did two podcasts that focused on human memory and how flawed it is. One podcast called Free Brian Williams is quite remarkable. In this podcast [...]

By |2018-09-28T09:24:12+00:00September 26th, 2018|Conflict Resolution, Human Behavior, Uncategorized|

Can Improv Help You Coach Your Team?

Until a few weeks ago I never thought of connecting improv theater techniques, like what you might see on the show Whose Line is It Anyway? to coaching a team member.  That changed when I listened to Alan Alda read his book If I Understood You, Would I Have this Look on My Face? . In this book Alda describes how he uses improv basics to teach scientists, professors, and doctors to relate and communicate better with their audiences, investors, students, and patients. Before I share how you might progress through a coaching session, let’s look at a few improv [...]

By |2018-09-21T09:18:22+00:00September 18th, 2018|Team Leadership / Teamwork, Teams & Culture|

No More Negative Waves, Coach

I lunched this week with a senior banker friend, who I used to work with many years ago. During lunch he shared a coaching challenge he is having that is the same challenge managers from several industries have shared with me – he has a younger commercial loan officer who is “okay,” but is not “stepping-up” – not trying to find larger loan customers and not taking responsibility for some things he should. Sound familiar to you? I suspected after talking with him that my friend was not a Connector Manager-Coach, but likely one of the other types of coaches [...]

By |2018-09-21T09:20:16+00:00August 30th, 2018|Team Leadership / Teamwork, Teams & Culture|

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