Leadership Theories

Are you growing bigger feet?

September 13, 2010
One of the common things that keeps managers from becoming leaders is spending too much time and attention protecting their turf. Over time, their attention gets internally focused on protecting and keeping order in their own little world … Are most managers more concerned with their toes getting stepped on or growing bigger feet?

What kind of leader are you?

September 13, 2010
Research conducted decades ago still offers insights into how leaders operate. Kurt Lewin’s 1939 study of leadership styles led the researchers to establish three basic types: 1. Authoritarian. 2. Participative or Democratic. 3. Delegative or Laissez Faire.

What’s your urgency?

August 13, 2010

People often describe leaders as having a sense of urgency. Author John Kotter, in A Sense of Urgency, says there are two kinds, one good and one bad:

If you call them, will they come?

June 14, 2010
Robert Bruner, dean of the University of Virginia’s business school, offers these answers on what it takes for leaders to draw followers: moral authority, a credible plan—and the loudest megaphone.

Speakers to grads: Go forth and fail

May 14, 2010

’Tis the season for commencement addresses. Last year brought a batch of good ones, often on how failure can lead to success. Example: J.K. Rowling, author of the Harry Potter series, told Harvard grads that seven years after her own graduation, she had “failed on an epic scale … You might never fail on the scale I did, but some failure in life is inevitable. It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all—in which case, you fail by default.”

Tips from India’s CEOs

April 12, 2010

Western CEOs could learn a thing or two from their Indian counterparts, say the authors of new research on the difference between Indian and Western bosses. Among the most salient lessons: Lead with a sense of social purpose; invest in employees; act as a role model.

A laugh a minute helps you lead

February 12, 2010

If you’ve been a fan of Executive Leadership, you know that leadership lessons may come from anywhere. Steve Cody, a public relations consultant who blogs as The Repman, says he’s learned five things about leadership from practicing stand-up comedy.

Guy Kawasaki’s golden rules

February 12, 2010

Guy Kawasaki made a name for himself as the second software “evangelist” at Apple Computer, convincing others to create software for the new Macintosh from 1983 to 1987.  He recently shared with students at Wharton’s business school his “Ten Commandments” for creating something of value for customers. While he advises to “ignore bozos,” he also admits to being a bozo himself—once making a decision that cost him $2 billion…