BLG Leadership Insights

Coaching as a Proactive Leadership Skill

knute-rockneCoaching in many ways has been with us for years. It’s really not a new concept. Maybe what’s new is that in the last two decades it has become a legitimate part of the workplace lexicon. For the most part, however, coaching has been disproportionately seen as an intimate, one-on-one, relationship between an experienced guiding light and a aspiring or floundering pupil.

There’s been a lot of confusion about coaching, about the role of boundaries in coaching, about the role of authority in coaching, and when coaching is or is not appropriate.

The coaching literature has become massive.  There is a deluge of academically relevant material, practitioner material, and the coaching perspectives have become so varied that, at times, it seems that it’s become a label looking for focus.

BLG Leadership Insights

10 Funny Leadership Cartoons

peanuts football1. As Bruce Lynn explains, this cartoon gets to the heart of the separation between managers and leaders.

2. How leaders should NOT handle their IT team.

3. The line between a negative employee and logical one is imperceptible.

4. Motivating employees requires that you set an example.

5. What you say…what employees hear.

6. The highlights of job descriptions. How would you describe your job to a class full of kids?

7. Listening to advice (from grown-ups) can sometimes fog up problems. Remember to think analytically.

8. Feeling trapped in an office may be a good sign you need to start building a coalition.

9. The rise of Lincoln and the fall of Stephan Douglas’ debating skills.

10. Obligatory Dilbert cartoon, or the true value of Twitter.

BLG Leadership Insights

10 Signs You Are a Facilitative Leader

classroom-managementLast week we outlined directive leadership; what it means, what forms it takes, and when it is used. We were careful to point out that directive leadership, although task driven, isn’t the only or the best way to sustain momentum within an organization. Sometimes it can force an organization to produce unexpected results and, on other occasions, it can smother employee motivation and drive.

Leaders who are opposed to directive leadership’s main tenants and rely on reflection and adaptable priorities can be considered facilitative leaders. Facilitative leadership is used to sustain momentum by meeting challenges without a set action plan. Facilitative leaders value creativity, reflection, and brain storming over planning, commands, and efficiency. Again, facilitative leadership isn’t the right fit for some people and some organizations. While it might produce results for one set of people it might create apathy and inefficient work habits within another.

Here are 10 signs you are a facilitative leader:

1.You have the capacity to make adjustments: As a facilitative leader you aren’t afraid to change plans, ideas, and strategies.

2. You put emphasis on people’s ability to reflect and innovate: You trust your peers and employees to be able to create new solutions and ideas in creative ways.


Visualizing Leadership: The Road Is In Your Mind


BLG Leadership Insights

When Self-Interest Is An Excuse Not to Lead

In the last few days the Israeli foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, maintained that he could not be involved in negotiations over the West Bank territories because he has a home on the West Bank and is thus a self-interested party. Mr. Lieberman’s lack of action can be characterized as taking a moral stand; however, beneath the surface, it’s a true failure of leadership.

Leaders who don’t have the capacity to understand the collective good and are not able to work toward it have no business to lead, especially if they are only thinking in terms of their self-interest. Indeed, the moral failure in the financial world stems from the inability of leaders to differentiate from individual self-interest and the collective good. In the realm of investment banking, many leaders thought that their self-interest and the collective good were one in the same. This delusion perpetuated moral failure and the financial collapse.