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leadership

Creating an empowered and efficient team

A few months ago, I read an article in the Wall Street Journal titled “How Bosses Waste Their Employees’ Time.” The author, Robert I. Sutton, is a professor of organizational behavior at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business and the article is largely based on the research that Sutton and his colleague, Hayagreeva Rao,…

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New perspectives on transactional vs. transformational leadership

The conflict between the narrow focus on operational excellence often required to keep your current business running well versus broad demands for organizational transformation required for the future business has become severe. Leaders have to simultaneously minimize disruption to their current business while consciously disrupting it to make the changes required for rapidly evolving markets.…

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Turning learners into leaders

To some, disruption is a scary word. But to many, it’s a pathway to a better outcome. Did Amazon and Uber scare people when the companies started? Possibly. But the concept for these companies was based on forward-thinking ideas and both companies have changed the way their respective industries work. In my recent blog post…

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Google’s Oxygen project took months to find out what makes a manager great; Cerebyte takes a day

Recently, a colleague forwarded me an article about Google’s Oxygen project from Inc. Magazine. This is a well-known effort by Google to use statistical analysis of performance reviews to determine what makes someone a good manager. The Google team’s findings are hardly revolutionary but, because they are Google, they are treated as some great revelation. It took Google…

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Why We Work

I just finished reading a book entitled, “Why We Work” by Barry Schwartz. The book has three core messages that really resonated with me: – The evidence that purpose is the primary motivator of behaviors is overwhelming – The conventional wisdoms that formal, particularly financial incentives are the primary motivator of behavior is wrong and…

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