This past week, a friend who is a retired federal judge and who knows I love leadership, encouraged me to think and write about leadership and family. My mind immediately drifted back several decades to a conversation I had with a friend while we sat on a bench outside Georgetown Law Center, where I worked for 32 years.
Many Leaders Seek Certainty – Wise Leaders Welcome Uncertainty
11 April 2021
This week as I was going on my daily walk, I listened to one of Brene Brown’s “Dare to Lead” podcasts. It was a one-hour interview with Adam Grant, the psychologist, author and professor at The Wharton School.
Last night basketball fans watched the semi-final games in the 2021 NCAA Basketball tournament. These semi-final games, also called “The Final Four,” featured the University of Houston vs,. Baylor and Gonzaga University vs. UCLA.
Every once in a while, I read a blog post or receive an email from a friend that resonates with me. This past week I received such an email from my friend Lou Briskman, the former General Counsel of CBS Corporation.
Earlier today I was having a conversation with my son’s college roommate. We are very fortunate that he and his wife live here in the Washington DC area so that we can keep up our relationship with them.
Note: Michael Reuter, a leadership thought leader and executive coach, served as Director of the Center for Leadership Development in the Department of Management at Seton Hall University from 2007-2020.
Several weeks ago as I embarked on one of my daily walks, I was listening to a podcast about the most essential elements of good leadership. The host and guest were talking about the quality of empathy, a trait I’ve touched upon consistently since I began this newsletter several months ago.
Yesterday as I took my daily walk, I was listening to a podcast interview with Simon Sinek, the prolific author, renowned speaker and international consultant. My sons have gifted me with one of Simon’s books, “Leaders Eat Last.” Simon is truly a deep thinker about leadership.
As we enter this new year of 2021, many of us will focus on setting goals for the 12 months ahead. Leaders can set goals for themselves and for their organizations.
My wife and I have been setting annual family goals for three decades, starting when our children were born. Each January we divided our goals into categories: family, financial, vacation and travel, physical, mental and spiritual.
We are taking a holiday break this week and will return next Sunday, January 3, 2021. I hope you are all spending some reflective moments searching for the gratitude you can uncover from this tumultuous year we have all experienced. As much as we all want 2020 to be over as soon as possible, I encourage you to think about the valuable lessons you have learned this year – about the world, about your friends, family and colleagues, and, most importantly, about yourself.
A Leader’s Ongoing Obligation: To Serve As A Role Model
20 Dec 2020
The words role model are used frequently to describe a leader’s purpose. Cliches like “walk the talk” describe leaders’ obligations to act on a daily basis just as they would want their teammates to behave.
Last week I wrote about the importance and power of listening for all leaders. I was surprised and gratified by the many affirming responses I received during the past seven days, including from 28-year-old son. When you receive positive feedback from your own children, you know you are doing something right!
In 1962, John Lennon and Paul McCartney wrote a song that started with these lyrics: “Listen. Do you want to know a secret? Do you promise not to tell?”
Today I want to share a leader’s secret with you, and I encourage you to tell as many people as possible.
This past week, the historian Doris Kearns Goodwin was talking about the tradition of presidents having graduated from Ivy League universities.
She spoke eloquently about those presidents who did not matriculate at top-tier colleges:
Each spring, members of the Jewish faith celebrate the holiday of Passover. The Passover meal is the same one Jesus was celebrating at The Last Supper, the night before his crucifixion.
At this annual celebration of the Jews escaping bondage in Egypt, people ask “Why is this night different from all other nights? “
In his 12-month challenge to leaders from around the world, acclaimed author and coach Michael Bungay Stanier (“The Coaching Habit,” “The Advice Trap”) is presenting short weekly videos in what he calls “The Year of Living Brilliantly.”
Gossip is a recurring cancer in many organizations, large and small, for-profit and not-for-profit. It detracts from any efforts to create a high-trust culture. Yet people at all levels of organizations continue to engage in gossip on a daily basis.
Many of the readers of this leadership newsletter know tht I have served as a licensed facilitator for The Covey Leadership Center, then for Franklin Covey, for 25 years. During that time, I have been privileged to teach the course, “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People,” to hundreds of Georgetown University employees.
The term “servant-leadership” was initially coined by Robert Greenleaf, an executive for 40 years with AT&T. Greenleaf was originally inspired by Herman Hesse’s novel “Journey to the East,” which Greenleaf read in 1958.
Unfortunately, many leaders refrain from either learning the tools of effective delegation or employing it as a strategy after they learn it. There are many reasons cited by otherwise exemplary leaders: