In our organization right now our focus is on building a culture that attracts and retains team members. We are especially focused on selecting the right people – unselfish people who want to be part of a team, who put the needs of others before ...

 

Steve on Leadership | Eight Character Questions from Theo Epstein



Eight Character Questions from Theo Epstein

In our organization right now our focus is on building a culture that attracts and retains team members. We are especially focused on selecting the right people – unselfish people who want to be part of a team, who put the needs of others before themselves, and who, quite frankly, we want to be around every day.

Pretty simple, right?

No. In one of our divisions we have found we only hire three (3) out of 100 people we start with. It is really hard to find people who match-up with the criteria we are looking for. Even more, we never really know if the person is the right fit until they get here and we see how well they fit in with their teammates.

Theo Epstein’s Character Formula for Building Teams. With all these questions swirling through...

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Add Originality to Your Leadership

I love baseball, so I am excited the season opens next week. Anytime I read a book that has a baseball reference, I am instantly intrigued. That happened recently when I read about how Jackie Robinson’s birth order contributed to him being the perfect person to break the color barrier in baseball – more about Robinson in a moment.

The book is Originals by Adam Grant. In this book, which I found fascinating, Grant explores dozens of studies and concepts that contribute to where personal originality comes from. (Steve Tip – I first listened to the book, but then purchased the hard copy so I could more easily understand the context of the many research studies Grant tries to fold into his story.)

Risk-Taking and Birth...

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Is Your Team a Mixed-Doubles Team?

We have been talking a great deal lately about teams, especially about constructing effective teams. Our recent focus has been centered on how to choose individuals who have the right attitude and will help create positivity. Sometimes we quote Herb Kelleher of Southwest Airlines and say, “Hire for attitude, train for skill.”

When you construct a team I think it is also useful to think about the type of team you have and remember this – not all teams are alike. A few years ago I wrote an article about how the late Peter Drucker described the three types of teams and I thought it is a timely topic to update and publish again.

Drucker says the three types of teams are: fixed position, parallel, and innovative. Here is a short summary of...

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Leading the Bullies Among Us

A few weeks ago I was at a meeting with over 200 people in the room. The last item on the agenda was for the group to agree on a future meeting site and there were three locations to choose from. As the speaker began to briefly describe the second choice a familiar voice boomed his interruption from the back of the room, “Only vote for that one if you like to watch grass grow!”

There were a few chuckles and then the speaker finished his presentation and a vote was had.  As no surprise to me the second location got only four votes and I was one of them; and I think it was the lowest vote tally I had ever seen at these meetings.

I will call the guy who shut the crowd down, Jack, in honor of one of movie’s most terrifying bullies of all...

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Deal With Problems One-on-One, Not in Group

Last week I saw this recurring behavior, again. And, every time I see it, I recognize it as a symptom of a supervisor who is avoiding conflict. It is something all supervisors, including me, have done at some point in our careers.

What was it? It was a “training” for a whole team of mostly experienced, competent people on a topic that only one person was deficient. As I looked around at the faces of the people in the group, I saw each person become more and more disengaged. It was a waste of valuable time.

A few years ago I wrote about this in an article Don’t Punish Everyone for One Person’s Mistake when I first focused on ridiculous laws and regulations that hurt many people when one or two people need to be dealt with.

Today, I want...

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