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twitter Here are a selection of tweets from September 2021 that you don’t want to miss:

The Person I Drive Craziest in Leadership by @RonEdmondson
4 Effective and Easy Ways To Relieve Stress At Work by @LaRaeQuy
Got a Problem? Think Like a Designer via @StanfordGSB
Split Second Decisions: Some Save Lives, Others Destroy Them by @PhilCooke
4 Ways You Can Immediately Become A Tough Leader Without Being a Jerk by @WScottCochrane
Mindset Matters: How to Embrace the Benefits of Stress Podcast (and transcript) with @AliaCrum, an assistant professor of psychology at Stanford via @StanfordGSB
Are You Investing in a Growth Experience or Entertainment for Your Team Members? by @artpetty
6 Questions to Determine if Your Strategy is Old or Obsolete by @gavin_adams
Leading When You’d Rather Be Leaving by Tim Elmore via @GrowingLeaders
3 Indicators of a Healthy Leader by @shawnlovejoy
Decision-Making: How To Take The Long View from @JohnBaldoni
A Constitution Day Like No Other by @jamesstrock The Founders’ Dangerous Words for Tyrants Everywhere Should Not Be Classified as ‘Harmful Content’ by America’s National Archives
10 Reasons Smart Leaders Make Bad Decisions by @BrianKDodd
Career Opportunities and Employee Satisfaction by @Julie_WG
Two Questions You Should Stop Obsessing Over by @PhilCooke When you let budgets and deadlines drive your thinking, you get ideas that can easily be paid for and delivered – not ideas that change the world
AI Can Now Code: Are You Doomed? OpenAI’s new #AI platform means companies will need you to move from being a specialist to being a generalist.
Has the Word “Leader” Lost Its Meaning? from @wallybock
Hyperbolic Discounting and 7 Ways to Prevent Self-Sabotage by Ken Downer @RapidStartLdr If we can figure out how to make the closest reward one that supports the long-term objective, we will succeed
3 Ways Positive Thinking Can Empower You Right Now by @LaRaeQuy
7 tips for delivering bad news to your boss by @suzimcalpine
Turn Your Organization Into A Community from @JohnBaldoni
True Leaders Create Urgency Not Turmoil by @KateNasser Timely: “Leaders, Inspire people don’t frighten them.”
Boss’s Tip of the Week: Feedback is perishable from @wallybock
Feedback is Just the Beginning from @wallybock
The top 15 leadership blogs you should be reading in 2021 to become the aspirational leader
The Case for Bold Brand Names via @brandingmag
Are You Leading While Distracted? by @SusanMazza
5 Traits of Digital Leaders via @WestMonroe
You Own Smarter, Better, Faster by @artpetty Eight Questions to Jump-Start Moving Faster
What to Do if You’re Barely Keeping It Together Right Now by @hannahsmothers_

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A Minute to Think Power of Pressure

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How to Find Your Edge

Edge

WE’VE HEARD that hard work is the secret to success. But all too often we see that hard work is not enough. What then?

We need an edge.

Laura Huang explains just how to gain that advantage in her insightful and encouraging book, Edge: Turning Adversity into Advantage. “Certain people seem to be endowed with a unique advantage in which they can execute faster and better and get the things they need, because they are positioned in such a way that others help them move forward. You can create your own edge and open doors—wide-open doors—for yourself.”

Having an edge makes hard work go further. Those that have an edge, Enrich, Delight, and Guide to make their Effort go further.

We must put in the work, but “when you create an edge, you create tailwinds that help you capitalize on your hard work more effectively.” We all face biases, prejudice, and harmful (to us) perceptions and attributions. But these can be the key to overcoming the adversity and roadblocks we face. “for most of you,” she writes, “it will be about positioning yourselves as an antidote to stereotypes, which will allow you to guide the perceptions of others, delight others, and ultimately will result in others seeing the unique value you can provide.”

Enrich

Huang begins with Enrich because it is the foundation of our edge. To do this, we begin by finding our “basic goods.” Those basic things that make you, you. “Creating an edge starts with pinpointing your basic goods and defining your circle of competence, and operating inside that perimeter.” It’s how you enrich.

Your history and your story are part of your basic goods. Don’t underestimate where you’ve been planted—grow there.

Our constraints provide us with a unique way to enrich when we own them—when we use them to see differently. “Don’t let the constraints that others create prevent you from identifying the problem for you, and hence the solution for you.”

Delight

Getting the door to enrich is made possible by our ability to Delight. Delight opens the door, so we can enrich. It’s how we deliver our value.

What is delight? It is the unexpected. “When we delight, we violate perceptions, but in a benign way. Delight unsettles and challenges beliefs about your context, grabbing the attention of gatekeepers and making way for you to show how you enrich.”

There is value in planning to delight, but it is important that you stay flexible and be looking for opportunities to delight. “Authentically delighting in situ requires you to be constantly fine-tuning, as well as constantly attuned to how you can shape situations to present the opportunity for your talents and core competencies to become apparent.”

Delighting requires you to have an opinion or point of view—being authentic while having the audacity, or the stomach, you might say, to take a bold, surprising stance.

We all have the capacity to enrich. But when you are able to also delight, that is where the real magic happens. That is how you allow them to let you in, and how you build your edge.

(As an associate professor at the Harvard Business School, Huang offers a great section on the advice she gives the students and entrepreneurs she coaches on the high-concept pitch, the two-sentence pitch, and the extended pitch. She states that “no pitch should be longer than one minute—after that, you should be in full conversation mode.”)

Guide

Once in, we Guide how others perceive our work and our worth. “It is inevitable that we will be affected by how other people view us and how they perceive us when we are merely trying to ‘be ourselves.’” We should keep in mind too that other’s perceptions of us are to a large extent about them.

Huang says we should look for patterns in our life—what rhymes. “Don’t go for absolutes go for directionality.” This is very helpful. Rather than adopt labels, we should identify directions for three reasons:

Going for directionality, rather than absolutes, helps you manage the impressions of others and guide their perceptions. You can be more fluid and adaptive.

If you go for general directionality, you’ll be more likely to avoid striving for goals that don’t leverage your strengths and that make it harder for you to create advantages. Self-awareness, in and of itself, is an elusive goal. We never really know ourselves, the best we can do is to find general directionality.

And finally, going for directionality allows you to simply move toward something that feels right, while already finding ways to cultivate an edge.

Self-awareness is knowing what we put out there and how it will be perceived by others. “Guiding entails being purposeful in helping others frame the attribution that they make about us.”

Don’t let them make assumptions. Give them the data points so that they can draw the trend line that you want them to see. Tell them, rather than allowing them to guess, about your future potential.

By providing directionality, you determine what is meaningful for them to know.

Effort

Effort works with the edge you are creating to inform you of the things you should be putting your effort into—things that you can enrich, delight, and guide. It’s in this combination that your effort then works harder for you. “Effort reinforces your edge.”

The optimal conditions for creating an edge are those in which bitterness and regret do not restrain you; they embolden you. Even if you are perfect, the world isn’t. Acknowledge and accept this, and you have already begun to create your edge. The secret is to know that the deck is stacked, and that life is not fair. But you put in hard work plus, regardless. Don’t let success define you, but don’t let failure define you either. Play the long game, not the short one.

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Teaching By Heart Contagious You

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Who Will Lead Us Tomorrow?

Lead Us Tomorrow
WE ARE RAISING TODAY, the men and women who will lead us tomorrow. It is a responsibility that should not be taken lightly. It should be done with forethought and with a consideration of the kind of world we hope they and we will live in when it’s their turn to lead.
Developing leaders places a huge responsibility on us today that goes beyond telling those future leaders what we think. To develop leaders, we must not only envision the leaders we want tomorrow, but we must behave in the manner of the leaders we want to see.
We may not like the leadership or lack of it that we see today, but if our reaction to anything we don’t like is anger, outrage, hatred, and vicious rhetoric, we are endorsing those values by way of example. Unwittingly, we perpetuate hatred, outrage, and vulgarity in the leaders of tomorrow. They learn to lead by watching us “lead.”
Martin Luther King succeeded because he calmly but passionately painted a picture of a world that appealed to our morality. He shared a positive idea to replace a negative idea without attacking other people. His example had moral weight. He was silenced by hatred. Hatred and anger is an idea without reason—it’s unreasonable—a rudderless opinion with no foundation.
We must be the leaders we want to see developed in the generations that follow us. If you want leaders who listen, who are understanding, compassionate, civil, and respectful, then we must display those values in our dealings with what we see happening around us. If not, we are the problem. If we want others to respect us and listen to us, we must respectfully listen to them. We talk when we should be listening.
If we believe people should be respectful of each other, then we must be those people. Returning in kind is tempting and sometimes funny, but it does nothing but add to the discord we see around us. Real leaders resist the temptation and rise above it. Our response should be one that is conscious and empathetic of the other person’s frustration and often misplaced angst. To do anything else only adds to the destructive division we see today.
Real leaders connect, they don’t divide. They focus on similarities, not differences. We often think that if I don’t yell, I won’t be heard, but we aren’t heard because we are yelling. The most strident voice is not the leader. Harsh words do not connect with others. “Blood in the streets” is not a mature response to disagreement.
When we become the leaders we should be, those that follow will learn to lead the way they should. As we learn and grow, those around us will learn and grow. We are modeling now the kind of leadership we will have in the future.
American poet Edwin Markham’s poem captures the need for us to grow into the leaders we want others to be:
We are all blind until we see
—That in the human plan
Nothing is worth the making if
—It does not make the man.
Why build these cities glorious
—If man unbuilded goes?
In vain we build the work, unless
—The builder also grows.
If we want our children to be intentional about their lives, we must too be intentional about ours with the end in mind—with the consequences of our personal behavior in mind. Meaningful lives are built; they don’t just happen. If we want them to be adults, we must act like adults. We are shaping the character of future leaders today. We must resolve to be the leaders we wish to see.
What will our future leaders be like? Who will lead us tomorrow? What legacy are we leaving for our children? We only need to look at ourselves.
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