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Right Intention; Wrong Solution!

In my most recent book, The Bellwether Effect, I list the eight things that we tend to do in modern organizations that turn off (demotivate) employees so thoroughly that 80% of the population would give up their day jobs if they had a free choice. (I also describe the solutions to this!).

One of the reasons for this is that sometimes, leaders inexplicably do things that meet their needs, but NOT those of their employees. Let me give you an example:

Recently I was in a major healthcare system. Pasted on the walls throughout the entire system was something called a “Patient Declaration of Values”. I asked the (very professional and competent) nurse standing in front of me if she was familiar with this, and she acknowledged that she was. I asked her if she could tell me what it said, and she replied that she hadn’t got a clue! She turned around to look at it and then turned back to me, observing, “It says, ‘Be a good person’”.

So how does this work?  The Bellwether Effect is the practice of leaders scanning the business and competitive landscape, observing the “best practices” of others, and copying them. Seeing that “Values Statements” are widely in use, management decides to run a workshop, craft a six-point statement of values, print and distribute copies throughout the organization, and run a half-day training program, so they can check off the “Values Statement” box on their “to do” list.  Is there a better way to do this?

Have there been any management decisions in your organization that are the result of CYA or “check the box” initiatives that met the needs of management but do not advance the culture of the organization, align the organization to a higher purpose or turn on (inspire) employees, causing them to LIVE their passion and achieve extraordinary results?

Thank You!

Thank You!

I am very grateful to everyone who supports my work as a coach and advisor to leaders.  This week I have been ranked #5 in the world as a Coach and #13 in the world as  Leadership Teacher. Knowing me as you do, you understand so well, that motivating with fear is a...

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Discovered: Why There are so Few Leaders

Discovered: Why There are so Few Leaders

We have been discussing the difference between "managers" and "leaders" forever. But as I have worked with leaders over the years I have discovered within this distinction an important secret that may explain why we have so few real leaders. Most leaders begin their...

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Celebrating Mary Oliver

Celebrating Mary Oliver

Mary Oliver passed away last week.  For those who loved poetry and nature, Mary Oliver was a muse, an inspiration and a lyrical writer. Famously, and metaphorically, she wrote in her poem "The Summer Day", “You do not have to be good. You do not have to walk on your...

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The Employee is the New Customer!

Our understanding of the role of corporations has moved through a series of evolutions. It was generally accepted 50 years ago that the main purpose of a corporation was to increase shareholder wealth. Economist Milton Friedman cemented this thinking in our culture...

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Holiday Stocking Stuffer Idea

Holiday Stocking Stuffer Idea

A Love Story: An Intensely Personal Memoir, is the story of my soulmate Tricia's and my remarkable 30-year journey together, using poetry I had written privately to her over the years, woven through the narrative. I write about leadership, so this a big departure for...

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A Gift For You

A Gift For You

There are angel cards, medicine cards, tarot cards, astrology cards, animal cards and an endless number of other cards that appeal to a wide array of interests. But in my work with leaders across the world, I noticed that no one had created a set of cards for business...

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Aren’t the “Soft Skills” the “Hard Skills”?

Aren’t the “Soft Skills” the “Hard Skills”?

I wonder why we call the easy stuff—like technical skills, professional mastery and STEM subjects—the “hard skills” and the really difficult stuff—like inspiring other people and leadership—the “soft skills”. This seems upside down to me—the “soft skills” are the...

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The Shortage of Inspiring Places to Work

The Shortage of Inspiring Places to Work

Business leaders are crying the blues about the so called, “shortage of talent”. Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic, a Professor of Psychology at Columbia University, where he teaches MBA students. says that when he began teaching MBA students they all wanted to work for...

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2018 EDGE (Educate Discover Grow Execute) Conference

2018 EDGE (Educate Discover Grow Execute) Conference

On October 4th, 2018, MacKay CEO Forums is holding a one-day conference at the Hilton Toronto. The theme is “Embracing Innovation and Technology”. Keynote speakers include Peter Diamandis and Amanda Lange (see the agenda here), and if you want to know about blockchain...

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Ageism

Ageism

    According to The World Health Organization: Today, there are around 600 million people aged 60 years and over worldwide. This number will double by 2025 and will reach two billion by 2050, with the vast majority of older people in the developing world. I...

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