· Which of these hundred mayonnaises should I buy?
· Which of these hundred TV series should I Netflix?
· Which of these hundred Kardashians should I ignore?
For those of us fortunate enough to live in the developed world, we’re faced with a mind-boggling number of options every day. But, for the moment, let’s leave mayonnaise, Netflix, and the Kardashians out of it.
According to Fast Company, creativity is now the most important leadership quality for success in business. Why is it, then, that so few leaders do little (or nothing) to make creative thinking a conscious part of their personal development?
In short, why do so few leaders practice intentional creativity?
“Some people brighten a room when they enter it; others when they leave.”
You’ve probably heard this quotation or some variation of it. I have no idea who said it originally, but it certainly is true. I’m sure you know people on both sides of the semicolon. Today I’d like you to consider a slight variation, this one mine:
“Some leaders brighten a workplace when they enter it; others when they leave.”
I’ve written quite a bit about how and why leaders need to be continuous learners. I believe that, as a leader, if you’re not continuously — and intentionally — learning, then you’re not really a leader.
I mean, c’mon — would a real leader ever think, “Well, that’s it. I’ve learned everything I need to. My brain is full, so I’m done.” Outside of Congress, that is.
But let’s leave aside for a moment the question of whether ...
Last week I posed the question, “What Are You Reading?” In case your answer was, “Nuthin’,” I wanted to — as a public service — both give you some ideas on where to start and spur your creativity at the same time! By the way, I was going to call this article My 10 Favorite Books About Creativity, but I realized that I’ve got about 25 that belong in my Top 10. So you see, the math doesn’t work ...
The leader is frustrated. “I don’t know why I’m having such trouble getting the team to buy-in to the company vision! It couldn’t be simpler!”
Then he shows me the company vision. It’s five paragraphs long. It contains sentences like, “To enhance the long-term value of the investment dollars entrusted to us by our shareholders,” and “To consistently strive to improve efficiency and productivity through learning, sharing, and implementing best practices.” It reeks of having been written by a committee—a committee ...
Are you stuck in a creative rut? Do you need an idea—now—but nothing’s coming? Don’t worry, your creativity is still there. Your brain is just taking a little “creativity catnap.” Here are a few ways to wake it up again and get those creative juices flowing.
Yesterday I was the closing keynoter for a conference of credit union leaders. One of the speakers who was on before me mentioned what was, to me, a startling statistic. He said that the average credit union CEO spends roughly 60% of his or her day just dealing with regulatory red tape. For the record (in case you’re not a credit union professional), this is not the best or most productive use of the CEO’s time. Which begs the question:
Leaders should be intelligent, right? I mean, it doesn’t always work out that way, but that’s kind of the ideal. We want our leaders—community, corporate, political—to be intelligent.
But what kind of intelligent?
There are some leaders who know everything there is to know about their industry. Other leaders have read dozens—maybe even hundreds—of books about leadership. Some leaders are particularly strong in emotional intelligencContinue Reading →