Influence

The Influencers: The Top Five Reasons Leaders Lack Influence

By: Jim Bruce
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If you are leading a change initiative, then you must be an influencer for that initiative to be successful.  Yet studies have shown that only one in five leaders are able to influence positive change in a way that it lasts.  What’s going on?

Today’s reading is “The Influencers:  The Top Five Reasons Leaders Lack Influence”.  In this piece, Ron McMillan and Joseph Grenny, the authors who also wrote “Influencer:  The Power to Change Anything,” provide five reasons why leaders lack influence:

The Leader of the Future

By: Jim Bruce
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For today’s reading, we turn to a December 2007 FastCompany article by William Taylor, The Leader of the Future.  In this piece Taylor, one of the founders of FastCompany, reports on a discussion with Ron Heifetz, director of the Leadership Education Project at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.  You will likely remember that Heifetz is author of one of the views of leadership we studied early in the l

Influence: Connecting with People

By: Jim Bruce
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John Maxwell, a very prolific writer on leadership, is the author of our Tuesday Reading for today:  “Influence:  Connecting with People”.

Maxwell’s thesis is straightforward;  ... “until leaders learn the art of connection, their influence remains minimal.”  To help us make connections, he offers eight practical steps:

1.  Don’t take people for granted.

2.  Possess a difference-maker mindset.

3.  Initiate movement toward people;  take the first step.

Don't Just Check the Box

By: Jim Bruce
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How often have you laid out for your team, perhaps in a presentation followed by a clearly written document, a future state for the team as well as the strategies for getting there.  And, you wait, and wait, and nothing happens.

This is the situation that Marshall Goldsmith addresses in “Don’t Just Check the Box”.  Though written four years ago, his advice is as timely today as it was in 2005.

The Leader of the Future

By: Jim Bruce
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We all remember Ron Heifetz from the first day of the IT Leaders Program.  There we learned about "adaptive leadership," “giving work back to the workers,” and about “getting up on the balcony.”

Today’s reading “The Leader of the Future” reports on a series of 2007 conversations that William Taylor, a founding editor of Fast Company, had with Heifetz.  In the conversations, Heifetz offered ideas, advice, and techniques for leaders of the future.  The conversations are structured around four topics:

Memo to a Young Leader

By: Jim Bruce
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This week, I want to share with you "Memo to a Young Leader" by William Taylor, co-founder of Fast Company and thinker, writer, and entrepreneur.  In this piece, which appeared in the May 8, 2008 issue of BusinessWeek, he asks five questions that you need solid answers for to be an inspiring leader.

1.  Why should great people want to work with you?

How to Make Nice

By: Jim Bruce
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In “How to Make Nice,” Susan Cramm addresses the issue of influencing others.  She begins by noting that “Getting others to do what you want them to do because they want to do it is the ultimate test of leadership skill.”  Cramm then focuses on rebuilding relationships that have been damaged -- who hasn't gotten themselves into this trouble in the past -- so as to have a more meaningful relationship in the future.   In doing so, she also provides a

Leading From Below

By: Jim Bruce
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In the March 3, 2007 issue of The Wall Street Journal's Journal Report there was an interesting piece by James Kelly and Scott Nadler titled "Leading From Below."  They note that CEOs -- and I would add leaders in general -- cannot change organizations on their own.  They suggest that the secret is to foster a leadership mentality throughout the ranks.  The authors have several suggestions:

• Make a decision to be a leader, don't wait to be told.

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