The Leaders Notebook

Hard questions, ambiguity and opinion for leaders

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Entries Tagged as 'PonderThis'

Does Robert Dudley Have What It Takes?

July 29th, 2010 · Comments Off on Does Robert Dudley Have What It Takes? · Follow the Leaders, PonderThis

When Tony Hayward took the helm at BP in 2007, he did so in the shadow of Lord John Brown whose departure was hastened by the board based largely on an abysmal safety record.  Hayward was charged with creating a culture of safe operations.  In his first public presentation, Hayward said “…Leaders must make the […]

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PonderThis: Simple Rules for Getting a Project Started

July 15th, 2010 · Comments Off on PonderThis: Simple Rules for Getting a Project Started · Follow the Leaders, Playing a Bigger Game, PonderThis

Getting a project or initiative off the ground is an important leadership competency, and yet may die in the planning process or simply do not gather enough inertia to get off the starting line.  At a meeting this week in Washington, I heard Kim Keenan, President of the Washington, DC Bar Association make a remarkable […]

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PonderThis: Which Risk Are We Managing?

June 17th, 2010 · 2 Comments · PonderThis

Risk Management is supposed to be about insulating your business from the conditions and occurrences that could threaten continuing operations.  I can imagine that drilling for oil in deep oceans is a serious risk management challenge- since the impact of a system failure is so high. So the question I have is? “Which risk were […]

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Ponder This: Hunker Down or Pedal to the Metal?

May 21st, 2010 · Comments Off on Ponder This: Hunker Down or Pedal to the Metal? · Follow the Leaders, PonderThis

I have been in New York this week in a meeting room with a very globally diverse group of leaders.  The free-floating stress is palpable. And the variety of ways that leaders are responding strategically is fascinating. I asked a few of my colleagues about the impact of tough times on strategy.  The responses seemed […]

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PonderThis: When Rewards are Out of Whack

May 6th, 2010 · 1 Comment · PonderThis, Thoughts on Life and Leadership

Last week we saw something many did not expect.  We saw senior members of Goldman Sachs enrage members of a congressional committee not by arguing or feigning innocence or even ignorance.  For the most part they seemed mystified.  There is a huge emotional payload connected with their $3 billion profit by betting against investments they […]

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PonderThis: What ELSE Can we Learn from Goldman Sachs

April 22nd, 2010 · Comments Off on PonderThis: What ELSE Can we Learn from Goldman Sachs · Follow the Leaders, PonderThis, Sliding Down the Razor Blade of Life

The pundits have lined up to comment on the SEC’s indictment of Goldman Sachs.  The analysis, finger pointing and positioning mounts by the hour.  But in addition to the debates about reform and regulation there are some subtle yet important leadership lessons to be learned.  Here are few that got my attention. Perception Matters – […]

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PonderThis: Leadership and Poetry?

April 15th, 2010 · Comments Off on PonderThis: Leadership and Poetry? · Leadership, Literature and Myth, PonderThis

April is National Poetry Month and I would like to suggest that you spend a little time with a poet this weekend.  You might not think of poetry as fair game for a leadership blog.  But that is only if you have not encountered David Whyte. Through both his books and his poetry, David has […]

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PonderThis: Tiger is Returning to Golf… and EVERYONE Has an Opinion

March 19th, 2010 · Comments Off on PonderThis: Tiger is Returning to Golf… and EVERYONE Has an Opinion · Great Questions, Leadership Lessons from the Links, PonderThis

Almost all leadership models place importance on clear values.  But there is nothing like a controversy to show us how varied our values can be. Since Tiger announced his return to competitive golf at the Masters, I have heard the following responses: The guy is a scumbag and he will be humiliated. Who cares?  It […]

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Bandwidth to Support Everyone in China on a Video Chat: But What Will They Talk About?

March 11th, 2010 · Comments Off on Bandwidth to Support Everyone in China on a Video Chat: But What Will They Talk About? · Great Questions, PonderThis, Sliding Down the Razor Blade of Life

Content and process are one of the polarities that leaders must balance every day.  And yet, process seems to trump content on a regular basis.  Recent announcements in the technology world have introduced mind-boggling capacities for moving information.  Google is literally entertaining bids from cities to be pilot markets for their planned high speed service.  […]

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PonderThis: Accountability for Accountability

February 4th, 2010 · Comments Off on PonderThis: Accountability for Accountability · PonderThis, Sliding Down the Razor Blade of Life

A change leader can delegate parts of an initiative, but ultimately accountability for accountability remains with the leader. Gartner Group, the tech analysis organization famous for their predictions, is out with their prognostication about the use of Social Networking in business.  (See the whole article here).   One of their pronouncements is unfortunately very familiar: “Through […]

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