Blue Flower

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"One way of looking at this might be that for 42 years, I've been making small, regular deposits in this bank of experience, education and training. And on January 15 the balance was sufficient so that I could make a very large withdrawal."

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This is a quote from Captain Chesley Burnett "SullySullenberger who landed on the Hudson River in New York following a bird strike which disabled both engines. Amazing example of keeping it together during a crisis, but he attributes this to experience, knowledge and training, which came together to serve him well during those critical moments.

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I am a great advocate of being positive, but this has to be context sensitive and not simply happy clappy behaviours that quite honestly seem to drive most of our colleagues mad. So, authenticity is most likey the key, and we can probably all relate to people who have 'a nice way about them'.. that leadership thing, yeah, they have that! Two cautions re over-optimism, one which is brought to life in a great article by David Collinson from Lancaster University. He introduces the 'Prozac Leader' http://lea.sagepub.com/content/8/2/87.abstract and suggests that these leaders often will not consider alternative voices and refuse to concede failure or admit mistakes. The second, and probably most dangerous, is the 'Charismatic Leader,' whom although you distinctly know what they are saying is going to lead to harm, you follow anyway. Steve Kempster and Ken Parry (Lancaster University - of course!) have written extensively about this very subject, viewing it through the lens of the follower http://www.emeraldinsight.com/doi/abs/10.1108/SHR-07-2013-0076 .. a caution here would be that it may be unhealthy to fall for your boss! 

Always good to finish with an illustration...!

 

This clip from David Marquet explores leadership in the context of being the Captain of a nuclear submarine (US). He outlines how giving intent to others can be a powerful tool for psychological ownership. Technical Competence and Organisational Clarity are key enablers in giving control (and ownership) to others, and the results are a workforce that is committed and has meaning and purpose...

 

Like all areas of business, employee wellbeing needs to be thought through. It is no good just trying different things without having the evidence of what works. Come with a plan or leave in defeat....!

 

Sahar Hashemi is an entrepreneur and the co-founder of Coffee Republic. This short clip offers one of the best explainations of diversity I have listened to. She talks about being yourself. In this she means not having a different persona for work and one for home. Speaking about generational gaps, and the development of personality in the workplace, people should be a 100% themselves; baggage and all. Authenticity of the person is a valuable commodity. In arguing you should take all of 'yourself' into the workplace, she includes both head and heart. Knowing yourself is key to this, and often the starting point for knowing your own people in your own workplace. You can draw similarities to the work of Peter Fuda and the so-called wearing of a 'mask.' Skillfully viewing this through the lens of diversity presents a compelling leadership offering. People with line management responsibilities should take note, as this impacts significantly on the wellbeing of the workforce, and of how people view you as a leader.

 

 

View the clip here:

 

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