Things our bosses do that make us stupid (part 5 of 6) – failure to prioritize

In this series so far, we’ve identified four ways that our bosses can make us stupid: Telling us to “not worry about it” – the condescending “there, there” that increases our fear and frustration. Making fuzzy, generalized statements instead of fact-based or actionable statements. Making assumptions about our motivations – and projecting their own on… Read the full article >>

Things our bosses do that make us stupid (part 4 of 6) – ignoring strategy

One of the most critical roles of leadership is to unleash the intelligence of the organization – to increase the collective IQ – to allow people to use that magnificent brain that we all have. And yet, so many bosses do things that have the opposite effect. This is the fourth in a series of 6 on… Read the full article >>

Things our bosses do that make us stupid (part 3 of 6) – assumptions about personal motivations

This is the third in a series of 6 blogs about things our bosses do that make us stupid. Let’s talk about how bosses often make huge assumptions about us – about our capabilities, about our interests, and perhaps most importantly, about our motivations. Making these assumptions can make us stupid because when our boss assumes… Read the full article >>

Things our bosses do that make us stupid (part 2 of 6) – fuzzy, generalized statements

This is the second in a series of 6 blogs, in which we are exploring common practices in workplaces that make people stupid. (You’re free to substitute “less intelligent” for “stupid” if you feel the need.) Our bosses make us stupid when they make fuzzy, generalized statements, truisms, or low-IQ commentary about the way the… Read the full article >>

Things our bosses do that make us stupid (part 1 of 6) – “Don’t worry about it”

This is the first in a series of 6 blogs, in which we explore the things bosses and organizations do that make us, well, stupid. I know some of you don’t like the word ‘stupid,’ but I think it’s relevant here. One of the goals of leadership is to raise the collective and individual cognitive functions… Read the full article >>

Let’s have a real conversation about being a hands-on manager

OK, so putting aside any squeamishness you might have about the terms “hands-on,” let’s talk about one of the most understood challenges in the workplace. Many managers can’t seem to get their thoughts around the idea of “micromanaging,” and they are so afraid of being a micromanager that they fall back on the old b***shit… Read the full article >>

Let’s Have A Real Conversation About Total Ownership

When I am stuck in traffic in Seattle, which happens more frequently than I’d like, it’s easy for me to experience frustration with “the way things are.” Sitting in traffic is a huge challenge. It’s unproductive and wasteful and very stressful. While I can dream about a world in which I could drive everywhere at… Read the full article >>

Let’s have a real conversation about difficult people

So here’s a question I frequently hear from clients: OK Jim, I hear what you’re saying in theory – that people need to have a certain level of maturity and emotional intelligence to be good bosses or good employees for that matter. But MY boss (or just as often, MY employee or MY co-worker) lacks… Read the full article >>

Let’s Have A Real Conversation About Giving Yourself Too Much Credit For Your Good Intentions

Let’s break leadership down into three areas: Recognition Intention Action   Recognition This is where you pay attention to what’s going on around you. You could call this analysis or observation. It is where you begin to notice things in the largest context possible – what does what I’m seeing tell me about our business… Read the full article >>

Let’s have a real conversation about the hard work of relationships at work

Good relationships are hard work. Rewarding, yes. Worthy of my best efforts, yes. Fulfilling, meaningful, fun, yes. But sometimes I feel we ask too much of one another. The deep dive into a relationship can become a land of scrutiny and convoluted efforts to avoid challenge or offense. It can be wasteful to spend too… Read the full article >>