Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Thoughts from "On Becoming a Leader" from Warren Bennis

Ingredients of a leader:
- VISION = Clear idea of what on wants to do.
- PASSION = Loves what he/she does and loves doing it.
- INTEGRITY = Self-knowledge, candor (honesty) and maturity; within integrity comes trust.
- CURIOSITY & DARING = Wonder about everything and take risks.

There is a difference between leaders and managers. Managerial skills are taught, while leadership skills are learned.

Descriptive words of a leader: Inductive, dynamic, understanding, ideas, broad, deep, experiential, active, questioning, process, strategy, alternatives, exploration, discovery, active, initiative, whole brain, long-term, change, flexible, risk, synthesis, open, imagination.

Descriptive words of a manager: Deductive, static, memorizing, facts, narrow, surface, rote, passive, answer, tactics, goal, prediction, dogma, reactive, direction, left-brain, job, short-term, stability, rigid,rules, closed, common sense.

Young leaders are told to:

  1. Take advantage of every opportunity
  2. Aggressively search for meaning
  3. know yourself

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Checklist for Potential Team Thinking Mistakes

My friends in hoop, I must apologize for not having posted in a couple of weeks. Been a busy time for old Coach G. Wrapping up an old job, familiarizing myself with a new job, looking for places to live in new city, etc. The most important focus of late has been the completion of my masters degree. Only 8 more days until that chapter is closed!

One of the current courses I'm completing is focused on the role of the teacher as an instructional leader. We deal a considerable amount with educational leaders, such as my favorite Michael Fullan. He is an unbelievable resource on the subject of change. I highly recommend him and have posted on Fullan previously.

One of the resources I found that might be useful to coaches, is the following checklist for potential team thinking mistakes:

1. Do we think only as individuals and press our views without really listening to any other suggestions?

2. Do we rush to find a solution to the problem/question instead of being clear about what the real problem/question may be?

3. Do we try not to waste time by avoiding thinking of alternative answers once we have a solution?

4. Do we fail to engage in real debate about other options which may exist?

5. Do we stifle originality, ignore change, and encourage complacency?

6. Do we react to some problems only in terms of self-interest, making collaborative thinking possible?

7. Do we get bogged down by internal politics and let the team meeting become a forum for power-play?

8. Do we go along with the majority view and never express an opposite opinion about which we feel strongly?

9. Do we pour scorn on ideas which we claim to have seen before or which we know won't work?

10. Do we admire fast decisions for their speed rather than wisdom and fail to make a serious risk-reward calculation?