Harness Your Peak Activity Window

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This is something I talk to clients about all the time: the idea that becoming aware of, and then utilizing your natural energy patterns to their maximum advantage will help you be more productive and more effective.

Josh Linkner gives some simple, easy to understand examples here:

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Have you done a personal energy study lately?

How to Get the Feedback You Need – HBR

Flattered Woman Smiling

You know you need feedback to learn and grow, yet most people are not good at asking for it.

While receiving feedback can be “a stressful experience,” here are some great ideas about specifically how and why we should request it more often:

How to Get the Feedback You Need – HBR.

The secret ingredient that makes some teams better than others | ideas.ted.com

Margaret-Heffernan[1]
“It’s the mortar, not just the bricks, that makes a building strong. The mortar, in a strong team, is social capital: mutual reliance, an underlying sense of connectedness that builds trust.”
Margaret Heffernan

Here’s something amazing from Margaret Heffernan, who is widely regarded as one of the most successful women business leaders in the world.

Essay: The secret ingredient that makes some teams stronger than others

The secret ingredient that makes some teams better than others | ideas.ted.com.

Here also is a link to my previous interview with her on my radio show, “The Leadership Focus.”

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/the-leadership-focus-radio-show/2011/03/02/women-in-leadership-series-a-different-take-on-leadership-today-with-margaret-heffernan

Learning and Unlearning – Josh Linkner – Speaker, Author, VC and Entrepreneur

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Josh Linkner, who is one of my favorite authors has done it again. Here’s a great blog post that every leader should read and think about.

What are you ready to unlearn?

Learning and Unlearning – Josh Linkner – Speaker, Author, VC and Entrepreneur.

Why Remote Work Thrives in Some Companies and Fails in Others – HBR

I think the author, Sean Graber, co-founder and CEO of Virtuali really nailed it in this article. What would you add?
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Why Remote Work Thrives in Some Companies and Fails in Others – HBR.

The trait that makes women great leaders

Here’s a thought-provoking article from today’s Fortune Magazine.

I love the idea of scrapping the “hard” and “soft” leadership skills, (often implying that “soft” is less substantial or less powerful), and replacing this with “hot” and “cool” leadership styles.

What do you think?

Confident Businesswoman
The trait that makes women great leaders – Fortune.

Introverts, Extroverts, and the Complexities of Team Dynamics

Front view portrait of four business executives sitting in a lineHow can you get the best from deep, quiet team members during meetings? A look at practices used in some organizations points to an answer.

via Introverts, Extroverts, and the Complexities of Team Dynamics – HBR.

Cancelling One-on-One Meetings Destroys Your Productivity

j0439382Boy, do I agree with this!

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard from one of my coaching clients, “I keep wanting to talk with her/him (their boss) about this, but she/he keeps canceling our meetings. I haven’t had a one-on-one with her/him in months!” This is an engagement killer.

Direct reports with important concerns, great ideas, and positive news are unable to communicate them in a timely manner, and generally feel put-off and devalued.

Not only does this practice destroy your best people’s engagement, it trains them that they must “catch you on the fly” if they are to get your attention… As the article states, this is a “recipe” for increased interruptions and “putting out fires” on your part.

Cancelling One-on-One Meetings Destroys Your Productivity – HBR.

Your Coaching Is Only as Good as Your Follow-Up Skills

j0302988I frequently work with leaders to help them learn to apply some of the skills of coaching to their work in developing members of their staff.

When people have experienced how powerful coaching can be, they are usually eager to use some of this with others who work for and with them. Here’s a good (short) article about maximizing these efforts with effective follow-up:

Have you tried these techniques? If so, please share your experience.

Your Coaching Is Only as Good as Your Follow-Up Skills – HBR.

Pronouns Matter when Psyching Yourself Up – HBR

Some people seem to have an amazing ability to stay rational no matter what.

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They efficiently make good, clear decisions while the rest of us waste energy doing things like panicking about upcoming tasks, ruminating pointlessly, or refusing to move on from our failures.

If you are not always one of those people, read about this interesting research by Ethan Kross from the University of Michigan and Ozlem Ayduk from UC-Berkeley about a simple change can make the difference between showing up like a cool-headed rationalist or a very worried and stressed out (but typical) human.

Pronouns Matter when Psyching Yourself Up – HBR.

In addition, here’s a link to a podcast of my past radio interview with Dr. Kross, “Can You Teach Yourself to Be Wiser.”