How Much Has Our Perception of Great Leadership Changed Over The Past Decade and What Has Changed?

    Published on August 31, 2015

    So much has been written in countless books, articles and research studies about “great leadership” today – what it is and what’s required for individuals to become stand-out leaders who catalyze positive change within people and organizations. ... Read more

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    • Leadership Styles: Becoming an Authentic Leader

      Published on August 28, 2015

      The capacity to develop close and enduring relationships is one mark of empowering leaders. Unfortunately, many leaders of major companies believe their job is to create the strategy, organizational structure, and organizational processes. Then they delegate the work to be done, remaining aloof from the people doing the work.

    • Discover Your True North with Bill George

      Published on August 25, 2015

      Bill George is the former Medtronic CEO, current senior fellow at the Harvard Business School and best-selling author of Authentic Leadership and the True North book series. Bill’s latest book, Discover Your True North, was published by Wiley on August 10.

    • Huffington Post: Why Leaders Lose Their Way

      Published on August 24, 2015

      Have you ever felt you were losing your way? Cut adrift on a raging sea? I know I have. In Discover Your True North, I describe five behaviors that can cause you to lose your way: Imposters, Rationalizers, Glory Seekers, Loners, and Shooting Stars.

    • The Street: Are You For Real? Authenticity Is The New Leadership Gold Standard

      Published on August 24, 2015

      NEW YORK (TheStreet) — Technology is not the only thing in corporate America that has changed in the past decade. The concept of leadership has evolved as well, said Bill George, author of Discover Your True North.

    • CNBC: Google's Alphabet Move Was Brilliant

      Published on August 20, 2015

      Google's plan to reorganize into a holding company called Alphabet is as creative as the company itself. Like all publicly-held companies, Google faces dual challenges of sustaining its growth through innovation and meeting the expectations of its shareholders. The ever-increasing pressures to deliver short-term results while continuing to make big bets on high-risk, high-gain ventures is a conundrum, even for high-flying Google with its dual classes of stock.

    • Inc: How Great Leaders Avoid Burnout

      Published on August 18, 2015

      You overcame adversity on your own, through mental toughness, with no help--and it's how you became successful. But it also could be your downfall. One day in 2007, Arianna Huffington found herself lying on the floor of her home office in a pool of blood. After an MRI, a CAT scan, and an ECG, she learned there was no underlying problem--it was exhaustion which had caused her to faint, her head smashing the corner of her desk and cutting her eye.

    • IndustryWeek: In 'True North,' Bill George Points to the Leadership Gold Standard

      Published on August 18, 2015

      Being the leader of a company can be fraught with peril, warns Bill George. If you run a public company, there is more pressure than ever to make every quarter’s results better than the last. Along with those pressures, company leaders can operate in a heady world of fame and financial reward. It is an intoxicating brew that can lead to terrible consequences. That’s why leaders need an internal compass that keeps them on the right path.

    • Huffington Post: For Leadership, Do You Need a Ladder or Compass?

      Published on August 18, 2015

      On your leadership journey, should you take a ladder or a compass? The answer depends on whether you are trying to build a career or have a fulfilling life. As David Brooks writes in The Road to Character, "Are you pursuing resume values or eulogy values?" When I graduated from college, I had the naive notion that my leadership journey was a straight line to the top. Keep climbing the rungs of the ladder and eventually I would reach my destination. Was I ever wrong.

    • How Leaders Build Trust

      Published on August 12, 2015

      I spoke with my friend Bill George, Senior Fellow and Professor of Management Practice at Harvard Business School, about what it means to lead ethically. His responses struck me as especially salient in our current business landscape, so I’ve paraphrased them below. (You can read the entire conversation in The Executive Edge: An Insider’s Guide to Outstanding Leadership.)

    • Trust: Essence of Leadership

      Published on August 12, 2015

      Trust is the essence of leadership – the coin of the realm. Unless people build trust with their colleagues, they cannot gain legitimacy to lead, nor can they empower others.

    • Huffington Post: Introducing: Discover Your True North

      Published on August 11, 2015

      Are you all you want to be? Do you have a path to fulfilling your dreams? You can do so just by being yourself, and developing the gifts already inside you. Can you recall a time when you felt intensely alive? A moment when you could say with confidence, "This is the real me?" That is when you are in sync with your True North.

    • Forbes: Bill George: His View On The Next Generation Of Leaders

      Published on August 10, 2015

      Article by Dan Schawbel for Forbes, posted August 10, 2015. I spoke to Bill George, who is a Senior Fellow at the Harvard Business School and former chairman and CEO of Medtronic, the world’s leading medical technology company. Bill spoke about the latest update to his bestselling book called “Discover Your True North“, gives examples of successful leaders, explains the leadership qualities of the next generation of leaders and more.

    • New York Times: Howard Schultz: America Deserves a Servant Leader

      Published on August 6, 2015

      Kudos to Starbucks founder Howard Schultz for his candid Op-Ed in today’s New York Times. Howard has the courage. and wisdom to speak truth to power when he says: "Too many political leaders put party before country, power before principle, & cynicism before civility. Our country is in desperate need of servant leaders willing to embrace those who are not like them." Howard Schultz is a leader featured in Bill George's new book Discover Your True North.

    • Fortune: Bill George: The hierarchical leader is out. The empowering leader is in.

      Published on August 4, 2015

      The former Medtronic CEO and management expert discusses the profound shift in priorities among successful business leaders working today. Bill George was CEO of Medtronic from 1991 to 2001 and, during that time, grew the company’s market value from $1 billion to $60 billion. He has since become one of the nation’s leading voices on business leadership and serves as a senior fellow at Harvard Business School. His book, Discover Your True North, was first published in 2007, but later this month, he will release an updated version, more than half of which will be new content based on interviews with 48 additional leaders. Fortune excerpted his first book in 2007.I talked with him about his new book last week.

    • Huffington Post: The Millennials: Ready To Lead Now

      Published on August 4, 2015

      Many Baby Boomers look down on Millennials as over-protected, lazy, attention-seeking young kids who haven't faced hardship. They are dead wrong. By 2020, Millennials -- born between 1981 and 1997 -- will make up 50 percent of the workforce. As their influence grows, we'll see a generation more focused on authenticity, mindfulness, and learning through adversity. Millennials are ready to lead now. As they do, they'll transform our ideas of leadership for the better.

    • Huffington Post: The Power of Mindful Leadership

      Published on July 28, 2015

      From the moment you wake up, you're bombarded with distractions. Emails clog your inbox, requests pile up, and notifications flicker in the background. Within moments your attention is scattered. Given the realities of today's 24/7 world, how do great leaders slow down and focus in order to make thoughtful decisions? Mindfulness.

    • People + Strategy: The New Global Leaders

      Published on July 24, 2015

      When 31-year-old Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg decided he wanted a deeper understanding of China, he made concerted efforts to learn Mandarin and then demonstrated his acumen by speaking comfortably with Chinese students. In May, Alibaba founder Jack Ma promoted 42-year-old Daniel Zhang to CEO to “hand over leadership to those born in the ‘70s.” These are just to examples of the new global leaders.

    • CNBC: Learning From Starbucks On Job Creation

      Published on July 23, 2015

      Never accuse Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz of being afraid to take on tough issues. His latest effort is aimed at the issue of youth unemployment, which is stuck at 12 percent for people 16 to 24 years of age. This age category includes many young people who dropped out of school and have never been regularly employed. In many cases, they do not have the skills or training required for today's jobs, even with four million current jobs going unfilled. None of this fazed Schultz, as he organized Opportunity 100,000 to create 100,000 jobs for unemployed youth.

    • Huffington Post: The Phoniness of Donald Trump

      Published on July 21, 2015

      Donald Trump wants to become president. He's running a campaign based on vanity and ego, not authentic leadership, with some prejudice tossed in. You will have to look far and wide to find a public figure who is less authentic than Trump. Last Saturday he reached a new low when he attacked Senator John McCain's war record, saying, "He's not a war hero because he was captured." While McCain was held captive in the "Hanoi Hilton," Trump avoided the war through deferments.

    • Huffington Post: Donald Trump's Arrogance Is Outdated In Corporate America

      Published on July 20, 2015

      Insightful article from Emily Peck for Huffington Post in which I'm honored to be quoted, posted July 20, 2015 ... After spending decades as Wall Street darlings, arrogant business leaders are out of fashion. The new hotness for CEOs these days? Displaying humility, self-awareness and honesty. In this new world, a good leader doesn’t brag about his "TEN BILLION DOLLARS," as Donald Trump's campaign did last week. A good leader doesn’t rank his workers and fire the bottom 10 percent each year, as revered General Electric CEO Jack Welch did back in the day. The new CEOs project humility.

    • Huffington Post: The Triumph of Authentic Leaders

      Published on July 14, 2015

      In late 2006, Alan Mulally arrived as the new CEO of Ford with a plain shirt, slacks, and a big smile. That smile quickly faded, however, when he asked to meet workers in the main factory. "I'm sorry", a colleague told him, "but Ford executives don't talk directly to factory employees." Unflinching, Mulally insisted on going to the factory floor. Once there, he spoke to the workers about their dreams, their hopes for the company, and the values of Ford.

    • Huffington Post: True North Leaders: Antidote to the Leadership Crisis

      Published on July 8, 2015

      Today, I am launching this new weekly column, "True North Leaders," in conjunction with The Huffington Post. Each Monday, it will feature leadership insights and the stories of authentic leaders making important differences in the world. We will also take on current leadership challenges and analyze why leaders fail. Most important, the ideas in this column will help you discover your True North, so you can lead authentically throughout your life.

    • A Great Week for America

      Published on June 29, 2015

      This has been a very good week for America, a week in which the rights and dignity of all people have been upheld. In just a week, what progress we have made! Recall: The Supreme Court upheld the legal right of all people to marriage, overcoming centuries of discrimination against same sex couples.

    • Fast Company: The Key to Creating Socially Conscious Businesses

      Published on June 29, 2015

      On a broad scale, how do we create altruistic organizations that can really transform society and transform economic systems? This is the field I’ve been studying since I left the corporate world eight years ago, and I’m convinced that the key to this is compassionate, authentic leadership. We need a new generation of leaders to step forward and provide this new kind of leadership.

    • Part 6: Journeying Within

      Published on June 23, 2015

      As children and young adults, we spend a lot of time in self-reflection. Who am I? What is the point of life? How will I change the world? Although I’d like to say that with age comes wisdom, that isn’t always true. What is certain, however, is that aging brings responsibility. We spend so much effort rushing from work to home to activity that we don’t take the time to think about what it all means. Carl Jung once said, “Your vision will become clear only when you can look into your own heart. Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.” Use these questions to look inside yourself and light the path towards your True North.

    • Part 5: What Are Your Rocks?

      Published on June 18, 2015

      A professor filled a jar with rocks and asked his students if it was full. They agreed that it was. Then, he added pebbles and asked again if it was full. His students acknowledged that yes, the jar was still full. He poured in sand, which filled the spaces between the pebbles, and his students confirmed that the jar was full. The professor explained that the rocks represent your top priorities. The pebbles are the things in life that are less important, and the sand is the little, every day stuff. Then, he dumped out the jar and filled it with sand. Once the jar was full of sand, there was no room for the pebbles and the rocks.

    • CNBC: Target CEO hits the bull's-eye

      Published on June 18, 2015

      Target's CEO, Brian Cornell, is no stranger to difficult decisions. In 1981, Cornell stood in his UCLA dorm room, struggling with the biggest choice of his life. He could attend his college graduation, or he could fly to London to chase the girl who had "absolutely stolen his heart." Thirty-four years later, Cornell faced another difficult decision. While dining with CVS CEO Larry Merlo, he and Merlo hatched a plan to sell Target's pharmacies and its in-store clinics to CVS.

    • CNBC: Why Democrats should back Obama on TPP

      Published on June 16, 2015

      American unions rallied together for a show of power after years of losing members and political influence. They garnered enough Democratic votes to shoot down their own president, Barack Obama. Sunday's New York Times explained how this coalition came together. The feature pointed out that the unions threatened Democrats who voted for the bill with loss of funding and support. Money talks louder in politics than sound policy.

    • Part 4: Strengths and Weaknesses

      Published on June 4, 2015

      We each have certain assets and certain liabilities. You can maximize the use of your skills and talents and overcome your handicaps, but only if you’ve identified them. The fourth part in my series on Discovering Your True North helps you discover the positive qualities you may not even realize you possess, as well as any weaknesses that could be stumbling blocks to your success as a leader. Think about each question, and don’t just go for the easy answer. We all have a token response when someone asks us what our strengths and weaknesses are, but dig deeper!

    • Reuters: FIFA crisis worse than anything in Olympics scandal

      Published on June 10, 2015

      June 5 (Reuters) - Canadian lawyer Dick Pound, who headed the investigation to clean up the International Olympic Committee after the 2002 Salt Lake City winter games corruption scandal, said on Friday that the FIFA crisis was worse than anything the IOC faced.

    • Soccer’s FIFA Is Morally Bankrupt – Corporations Should Suspend Sponsorships Until Blatter Resigns

      Published on June 1, 2015

      The fish rots from the head, and this is undoubtedly the case with FIFA and its leader, Sepp Blatter. U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch’s indictment of 14 senior FIFA officials confirms what we all knew. FIFA is a deeply corrupt organization. Lynch, who collaborated with the police in Switzerland to arrest seven FIFA officials, detailed at least $150 million in corrupt payments over 24 years. At week’s end, Justice Department officials said they were preparing additional indictments.

    • Part 3: Shape Your Future

      Published on May 26, 2015

      We’ve looked at where you’ve come from and where you are now; it’s time to examine your future. Unlike your past and present, the future is vague and nebulous. Don’t let the unknown intimidate you. Each choice you make now will impact your path to your goals. Instead of worrying about what lies ahead, seize control of it. You are in charge of your own destiny, regardless of your circumstances. Don’t rely on luck to get you where you want to go; hard work trumps good luck every time. Answer these questions to narrow your focus and define your future.

    • Part 2: You Are Here

      Published on May 19, 2015

      A map is useless if you don’t know where you’re currently located. The questions in this blog, the second in a six-part series on “30 Questions to Discover Your True North,” are designed to help you determine where you are at this moment. Once you know where you stand, the path to your True North will be much clearer. Answer each question honestly and thoughtfully. Don’t get discouraged, and remember: where you are today is not where you’ll be tomorrow. The question is, are you moving forward or crawling back?

    • HBS Working Knowledge: Fixing the ‘I Hate Work’ Blues

      Published on June 6, 2014

      The New York Times ran a troubling story, "Why You Hate Work," in last week's "Sunday Review." The article indicated that employees work too hard and find little meaning from their work. The anecdotes we all hear about this topic are reinforced by the Gallup Poll, which shows that only 30 percent of employees are engaged in their work. The issues raised are ones I have worked on for many years. With the drive for higher productivity in the workplace, there is little doubt that people are putting in longer hours than they did two or three decades ago. In part, this drive comes from never-ending, short-term pressures of the stock market. An even greater factor is the global nature of competition today, which pits American organizations directly against counterparts in Asia, where work days are long and onerous.

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