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In the topic 'Focusing on Strengths'


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A Common Misconception Hampering Leadership Skill Development

In recent keynote presentations and workshops with HR and leadership development professionals, more and more participants have been embracing the approach of building on strengths. When presented with the powerful evidence and logic of strengths-based leadership development, most people are convinced. But it’s tough to let go of deeply ingrained practices and “conventional wisdom.” One […]

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Leadership Sweet Spot: Strengths, Passion, and Organizational Needs

Most leadership development workshops provide short term inspiration that quickly dies out. That’s usually because participants are encouraged to focus their improvement efforts on weaker areas. As outlined in my Double Learner Motivation with Strengths-Based Leadership webinar, focusing on strengths is much more effective and lasting. Direct reports, bosses, peers, and others assessing overall leadership […]

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The Best Positivity/Negativity Ratio for Peak Performance

Given the overwhelming research on the power of optimism can leaders and teams be too positive? Intuitively we know that’s true. An overly positive view often leads to whitewashing issues as if pretending they don’t exist will make them go away. Over the top optimists often avoid those courageous conversations that address the difficult Moose […]

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Double Learner Motivation with Strengths-Based Leadership Webinar Now Available

Needs assessments and performance evaluations look for gaps and design training programs to fix weaknesses. This is a major reason participant motivation to build skills has been very low and transfer of learning poor. On Monday I delivered a 60 minute webinar on The Strengths-Based Leadership Development Revolution and its refreshingly different impact on leadership […]

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Double Learner Motivation with Revolutionary Strengths-Based Leadership

On March 4, HR.com is hosting my complimentary webinar on Double Learner Motivation with Revolutionary Strengths-Based Leadership. In this fast-paced session I’ll discuss why a huge part of the leadership development gap is caused by traditional needs assessments and gap analysis. This weakness-based approach is ineffective and undermines participant motivation for change. I’ll show pre […]

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Is Your Culture Anchored in Strengths or Weaknesses?

Most organizations we’re working with today have declared a set of values. Posters, slides, banners, screen savers, newsletters, flyers, and framed parchments proclaim what the organization stands for. Many of these values statements assert a commitment to excellence, respect and integrity, customer focus, teamwork and collaboration, service/quality, responsiveness and the like. This is an important […]

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“How to Be Exceptional” is Destined to be a Landmark Leadership Book

Leadership has been a lifelong passion for me. I read thousands of books, papers, articles, and blogs on the topic. I’ve also written seven books, hundreds of articles and blogs, facilitated over a thousand retreats and workshops, and delivered hundreds of keynotes on personal, team, and organizational leadership. As I wrote in the September issue […]

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Leadership Development: Are You Trapped by Paradigm Paralysis?

Lord Kelvin was a highly decorated and recognized 19th century British mathematical physicist and engineer. The list of his pioneering contributions to electricity, thermodynamics, and the emerging field of physics is a very long one. He was knighted by Queen Victoria for his work on the transatlantic telegraph. The guy was a genius. He’s also […]

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Thoughts That Make You Go Hmmm on…Making Strengths Productive (Peter Drucker)

One of the first management books I read when I became a supervisor at Culligan Water in the mid-seventies was Peter Drucker’s slim and wisdom packed book, The Effective Executive. Chapter 4; “Making Strengths Productive,” was especially helpful. In subsequent management roles I found myself recalling or referring back to his practical and powerful perspectives […]

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The Enduring Impact of Focusing on Strengths

Years ago a 7th grade teacher gave her class an up close and personal exercise in finding and building on strengths. She began by circulating sheets of paper that had only the name of each student at the top of each blank page. Students were asked to identify what they felt was the greatest strength […]

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Building Organizational Muscle: Why Building Strengths Pay Greater Dividends than Fixing Weaknesses

Last week I met with an HR VP to discuss lifting organizational performance through leadership and culture development. The company was doing well and growing through a few strategic acquisitions. Levels of customer satisfaction, service/quality, safety, productivity, and profits were good but not great. He and the senior team were looking for ways to boost […]

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Leadership Competency Models: Why Many Are Failing and How to Make them Flourish

Last week’s two blogs on leadership competencies generated some stimulating discussion and feedback on the promise and problems of this popular approach to leadership development. Given the central importance of this issue to leadership and organization development, both blogs are now available as a white paper. Click on Leadership Competency Models: Why Many Are Failing […]

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5 Keys to Make Leadership Competency Models Flourish

My last blog post looked at how Why Many Leadership Competency Models Are Failing. This post looks at what has been learned over the decade of implementing the Strengths-Based Leadership Development System. Jack Zenger, Joe Folkman, and their team have compiled a huge body of research on the best practices for developing and effectively using […]

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6 Reasons Many Leadership Competency Models Fail

Most progressive organizations today are using leadership competency models to outline the key skills and behaviors they want to see in their supervisors, managers, and executives. Leadership competency models can provide a structured framework for defining and developing those behaviors that have the biggest impact on an organization’s performance. Used effectively, they become a roadmap […]

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Positive Psychology, Strengths, and Leadership

I first encountered Martin Seligman’s work on the power of optimism in the mid eighties. I’ve been an avid reader of his research and groundbreaking work ever since. When he was president of the American Psychology Association in 1998, he founded the Positive Psychology movement. Last July, I attended the first Canadian conference on Positive […]

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November 28 Webinar on Building Organization Muscle

Last week we held our morning briefing in Toronto on Developing Exceptional Leaders. During the first part of the morning I delivered a 90 minute overview of the unique and revolutionary Strengths-Based Leadership Development System. You can view a condensed version of the material I covered in an archived webinar on The Strengths-Based Leadership Development […]

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Three Strategies to Dominate in a Scary Economy

Tomorrow is Halloween. So it’s fitting to read a very well written piece in Fortune about “how smart companies are facing the doomsayers with great ideas and fearless moves.” Senior Editor at Large, Geoff Colvin, has been a long-time favorite business writer of mine. He often shows how the best leaders build the strongest companies. […]

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Manifesto for a Leadership Development Revolution

I’ve been delivering keynotes, webinars, facilitating workshops, and discussing our Strengths-Based Leadership Development System for the past month with many highly experienced HR, Learning, and OD executives. It’s been fascinating to see most of them go through the same struggle I did when I first dug into the compelling research. On the one hand, comments […]

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At the Intersection of Revolutionary New Development Approaches

The pace around The CLEMMER Group these days may not be as frenzied as the U.S. presidential race but some days it feels like it! We’re not out on the campaign trail kissing babies or slinging mud at our opponents. But we have been very busy spreading the word about Zenger Folkman’s revolutionary leadership development […]

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Update on Zenger Folkman’s New Book “How to Be Exceptional”

As I said to Jack Zenger and Joe Folkman in last week’s Strengths-Based Leadership Development webcast (click on title to view the archived session). How to Be Exceptional: Drive Leadership Success by Magnifying Your Strengths (click on title to read my review) really is an exceptional book. In my 35 plus years of studying, applying, […]

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