Leadership lessons from my father
One short exercise in my leadership workshops is to ask people to think about the best leader they’ve ever worked with or for, and what qualities made that person special. Each time I run the exercise, I get to think about my father, Thomas A. [more]
3 Ways to Boost Career Options for Your People
Ask a fresh-faced, bright-eyed Ph.D. student at the outset to name their career goal and a majority will say, “professor.” Although most of them will never get there. The numbers that achieve this goal are very low indeed, varying somewhere betw [more]
Stop Planning and Enjoy a Better Career
Late one evening, when we were all sitting around and philosophizing about life, a friend of mine said to me, “you know, you’ve clearly cold-bloodedly masterminded your career.” Through the rear-view mirror, it all looked planned. Hand on hear [more]
Shocking But True: I’m Officially Certifiable
I was recently invited to participate in the inaugural three-day training for International project management from the International Association of Project Managers (IAPM) in Röthenbach, near Nürnberg, Germany. On the first morning of the trainin [more]
5 Ways to Improve your Research by Improving Cooperation
In my experience, most researchers are looking for a more productive environment that is conducive to performing great work. In most cases, the current structure and dynamics of research groups does not help them to meet this aspiration. In an earli [more]
Darwin’s “Missing Link” that could revolutionise your team
I often hear from clients about the side effects caused by the tension between their desire to collaborate and their people’s need for individual success.  These can take the form of people hiding data from their colleagues, or not putting them in [more]
How leaders can improve organization: Q & A with Don Fornes
This week's article is an interview with Don Fornes, CEO of Software Advice. His blog A Million Little Wins offers perspectives on how to build a business. Don connected with me after I published 7 ways to improve your meetings in August. I asked Don [more]
How much initiative do you want?
When discussing with clients how to lead their staff, one question that arises often is, how much initiative should my people show? In their classic HBR article, Management Time: Who's Got the Monkey? Oncken and Wass lay out a five-level scale of ma [more]
How to Get Your Project Managers to Tell You the Unvarnished Truth
Very few people like to have to say “please listen: my project is a dog’s dinner” and, in many organizations, the culture of project management discourages raising such red flags. Gretchen Gavett recently published an article, “The hidden fa [more]
Four Keys to Unlocking Motivation
Early last week I facilitated a ½ day workshop on leadership at the 1st Post-Doc Days at the Institut Pasteur in Paris. One of the topics we discussed was motivation, the topic that researchers ask most questions about. Science is not for the fain [more]
Beyond Boring – How to inject life into your presentations
Leadership has moved on since the time of the Roman emperors and nowadays leaders need to be able to rely on their communication skills to influence others to ensure that goals are met. A few years ago I published a blog article He wants Subjects, V [more]
How Science can help solve the Enneagram’s Credibility Problem
A key characteristic for leaders is to be able to understand and deal with different types of people or characters. In my work I make use of a model of personality, the Enneagram, that my clients find useful in understanding themselves and their coll [more]
5 nuggets of 2400 year-old leadership wisdom
One recent Sunday evening I stumbled across Yannis Simonides’s performance in the one-man show Socrates Now in Athens. I had decided to visit Athens on my way back from delivering a to-day leadership programme for the Nucleosome4D network, as a cu [more]
Leadership is another of those things that people find hard to define, but can recognise it when they see it. I recently googled “leadership definition” and got 386 million hits, which indicates there are many definitions out there.  A dictionar [more]