Peggy and Pete are taking a break for Thanksgiving. We’ll be back with our usual (semi-)witty and sometimes provocative takes on life in mid-December. Please enjoy your time with friends and family and know that we both are thankful for your support, attention, and (in many cases) friendship.
We’ve all been there. We make a suggestion that we’re certain will make things better. Instead of being greeted with support or acceptance we’re met with waffling, or worse yet, resistance. Whether it’s stated or not, the message is clear – “Please move on to other issues.” Frequently it sounds something like this, “Thank you for your suggestion. We’ll take it under consideration. “
I recently attended an IEP meeting where I was invited to review a student’s progress towards transportation independence. This junior high student with special needs was to be learning “stranger danger” so that she would be able to travel to the neighborhood bus stop safely. Eventually, the goal was that she would be capable of getting to school as her non-disabled peers do. This student was very “high-functioning” and just needed to learn some safety habits. It would not have been unreasonable to expect her to not require special education transportation at all by her sophomore year in high school. Read the rest of this entry
I did it again. I said the words “If I can help. . .” without thinking through the implications. This time, I was offering to babysit a neighbor’s children. When I said it two weeks ago to a brand new acquaintance, she emailed me within days to ask if I could take her to a doctor’s appointment (I couldn’t, and I didn’t). I told a fellow member of a social organization to which I belong to “call me if you need anything,” despite the fact that I’m truly booked out through Thanksgiving. My frequent offers to help – well-intended though misguided – are symptomatic of my tendency to overcommit. I genuinely wish I could be “there” for everyone. Maybe it takes guts I’ve not yet developed to refrain from offering more than I can give. Read the rest of this entry
This is the third post in our series “The Guts of Leadership.”
General John Barry was the executive director for the investigation of the space shuttle Columbia disaster. He recently presented for NAPT’s Leading Every Day initiative. Among the many insights he offered about NASA’s mindset prior to the disaster was one which was particularly salient: “Asking for help is a measure of strength – not weakness. “ Read the rest of this entry
It may be telling that Pete often finds inspiration for blog posts in business articles and publications, and I’m often moved to write by something I read in less relevant sources. I don’t know what that “tells,” in fact, but I’m sure it reveals something about us as bloggers. Read the rest of this entry
This post kicks off what we call The Guts of Leadership series. You’ve probably noticed that over the past few months we’ve expressed our frustrations with weak leadership and the failure to change when change is clearly necessary. So over the next couple of months we’ll highlight some specific practices we see in far too many operations. We hope to provoke some critically needed improvements.
In a recent article titled 6 Sins of Leadership, the former head of GE Jack Welch asserts that poor leaders lack the guts to differentiate between the star performers and those who are performing at a lower level. He rails against managers who are “unwilling to deliver candid, rigorous performance reviews, …[and instead] give every employee the same kind of bland, mushy, ‘nice job’ sign-off”. Read the rest of this entry
I recently had the pleasure of a lengthy flight delay at LaGuardia airport. Pleasure you say? How’s that possible? Nobody enjoys layovers. Well this particular extended stay at the food court was actually enjoyable. We staked out a spot near a recharging outlet and settled in for what threatened to be a long boring delay. Read the rest of this entry