Exclusive Leadership Event with Tom Moody

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TomMoodyPlayerI am holding an exclusive leadership event with Tom Moody on February 5, 2015 in Perth. Tom is one of Australia’s cricketing legends and a coach of international stature. With extensive corporate, coaching and leadership experience around the world, Tom has tremendous insight and a unique perspective into leadership, high performance, teams and the business of business!

I’ve negotiated a special morning with Tom, in the middle of his hectic international schedule, to discuss issues of leadership and people performance that impact us. We’ll have no more than 30 people for a no-holds barred session on getting the best out of ourselves and our people through the triumphs, tragedies, trials and tests of our endeavours.

This is a one-of-a-kind development opportunity that I have especially organised for my network. You won’t want to miss it!

There are full details about how you will be able to participate in the morning, plus registration details, at our Event page at www.lamplighter.com.au/viewStory/TomMoody. There are only 30 places available so you’ll need to book right away.

If you prefer, you can also contact me directly on 0435 127 320 or at info@lamplighter.com.au.

See you there!

Peter McLean

How to Be The Brightest Star at the Party

Christmas parties are all on the go and it’s during those times that many feel the need to be the most charismatic and the wittiest bon vivant, in order to impress their peers and ingratiate their superiors.

So how can you be the brightest star in the room?

You can try to look like Jennifer Hawkins (former Miss Universe) or Chris Hemsworth (who doesn’t know Thor?) entering the room: all eyes turn to these well-known faces; beautiful, smiling, towering forms of elegance. But let’s face it: most of the world doesn’t have their looks and fame, or they wouldn’t be standing out in a crowd, would they? But everyone can use something far more powerful and ultimately more fulfilling: the power of relational charisma.

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Loss and Grief in the Heart of Sydney

The terrible events at a Sydney café yesterday through last night remind all Australians that violence and terror are not far from our doorsteps.

Although we live in what we have traditionally regarded as a safe haven far from the war and terrorist torn regions of the world, the fact is that every day Australians of all stripes and colours go through horrendous events brought on by hatred, violence, rage, despair and a callous disregard for the sanctity of life. Amongst those tragedies are the myriad blows that accost people through the mere tyranny of circumstance – an horrific injury, a diagnosis of cancer, a fatal accident.

Rising up and carrying on in the face of these tragedies is a task that demands the most from us. It is easy to become angry, bitter or resentful and to give up values and ideals for the sake of a so-called ‘justice’ or to ‘make things right’ in our heads.

But the reality is that life does not present anyone with a pristine set of circumstances. It’s messy and at times wearying. But we do have something that can change all of that: that is, others.

One of the most difficult things to do in times of grief is to receive the help of others. It is the myth of our Western generation that we must be self-sufficient. That we must carry the load ourselves. That we must be the sole bearers of our burdens.

When you are faced by overwhelming loss and grief. When the mother of your children had gone merely to have a coffee and ended dying in the clutches of a madman. When you cannot face getting up and facing the world, then know that there are others out there praying for you, offering you a helping hand, willing to be the shoulder you place your hand on to help you get up and carry on.

And for those of us who are in a position to help, to lend comfort and aid, we can make the time in our schedules, we can put off that work, we can sit in silence with our friends, waiting for them and simply being there for them, at the most critical time in their lives. You will never be more grateful that you took the time to help someone else.

That helping hand is the real legacy of Australian mateship – not sacrifices on battlefields, but the sacrifice of giving a helping hand to anyone in need.

My prayers go out for the families of those killed at the Lindt café in Sydney – families of both the victims and the perpetrator – and also for all those who suffered through this nightmare, in and outside of the café.

May the people around them come together so that they can rise up again with hope of a better day to come.

© 2014 Peter J. McLean

Why Coaching Matters … And the Results I Achieve

Coaching-800x471Coaching actually does matter.

When I was younger (“When I were a lad”), I frequently thought I had to accomplish it all myself. I had to prove myself – even if it was only to me. Surely I was smart enough and competent enough? So when organisations talked about bringing in consultants and others to help us achieve more, I thought, “Why would you want to? We can do it on our own!” And I was good at getting others to come up with ideas and create new outcomes. Typically, the results were far superior to anything advocated by the consultants, change experts and teams of people brought in to improve conditions.

But I was missing something really important:

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How Language Matters for Leaders

languageA recent article posted on LinkedIn received an enormous response of well over 1,300 comments (and counting) within one day. The article is not about how to negotiate harder, not about treating people right, not about how to turn war into peace. It’s simply titled, “40 Incorrectly Used Words That Can Make You Look Dumb”. And then flow the torrent of comments listing people’s pained peeves about how others misuse the English language.

For leaders and those rising in their careers, this can be, sad to say, a make or break deal for their progression.

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How to Develop a Sense of Responsibility

[This is just one of a series of posts in direct response to the needs raised by those who completed my 2014 Blog Reader Survey. Enjoy!]

Atlas Does Not ShrugWhile discussing leadership with one of my coaching clients, he commented that part of his development of his leadership came through owning his own business a number of years ago. Having to ensure that business came through the door, that standards were high and the workers were on the job – all while going towards feeding his family – meant that he felt total responsibility for the work requirements. That basic, elemental part of his leadership – the sense of personal responsibility – is something he has carried over to a highly successful career in a large corporation. And it is a vital quality that activates and sustains leadership.

But developing an appropriate sense of responsibility in yourself and in others can be difficult. How do you do it?

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Glad to See Wharton Agrees With Me

Wharton just published this article on CEO Successions and a current trend of re-hiring CEOs at big name brands. http://knowledge.wharton.upenn.edu/article/the-pros-and-cons-when-the-ceo-returns/. Despite the fact that Strategy& (formerly Booz & Co) say that – on paper – many companies are doing well with succession planning, Wharton quote the former chairman and CEO of Sears Canada as saying,

“Most companies have no effective succession planning, or if they do it’s flawed, as evidenced by CEOs who are anointed who fail.” – Mark Cohen, former CEO Sears Canada

Amongst other things, this article demonstrated that most of the big consulting firms often do not have a clue when it comes to what happens on the ground. They are too busy reviewing numbers, matrices and processes and congratulating themselves on their mergers and number of consultants/MBAs deployed, rather than paying attention to the actual results.

See my blog post on Why Most Succession Planning is a waste of time for some more of the reasons why succession planning fails. More to come…

© 2014 Peter J. McLean theleadershiplamplight.com

Why You Need to Stop Searching for Just the Right Words

Words Words WordsRhetorimania or Motivomania – I’m not sure how I’m going to go with this, but I’m creating a new word to describe the undue obsession some people have with looking for inspiring words, rhetoric or ‘motivational’ speeches and literature to ‘move’ them to do something.

Many of my clients say that one of the things I do is to work with their leadership and their talents in a special way to help them become better leaders and better people. And frequently, part of that is developing them as leaders who authentically and enthusiastically communicate a persuasive and inspiring message.

Now, this may sound crazy, but as a communications expert, as a student of language, as a lover of literature, as an enthusiast for expression, as an ardent admirer of the art of the address, I have grown increasingly frustrated and dismissive over the years with people who are all about words.

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Why Most Succession Plans Are A Waste of Time

[This is just one of a series of posts in direct response to the needs raised by those who completed my 2014 Blog Reader Survey. Enjoy!]

HR_SuccessionPlanning_Baton1There’s a lot of talk in organisations about succession planning. Raising up the next generation of leaders is important. Handovers, exit strategies, insuring against tragedy are all important. But the fact is, many, if not most, succession plans are a waste of time.

Why is that?

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Planning Like You’re Bart Simpson: Lessons from the Ebola Outbreak

bartI haven’t watched the show for well over a decade, but I remember how Bart Simpson went about checking the possible name abuses for his new baby boy, whom he intended to call Bart.

Homer: “What could they do with Bart? A-art, Cart, Dart, E-art. Nope. No problems there!” And he blithely heads off, content that no-one could ever make fun of his son’s name.

Do you get the feeling that this is how some governments’ agencies approach their risk and crisis assessment? Continue reading