Mistakes: Leadership and Culture

The February Authentic Leadership Dallas lunch meeting will be focused on mistakes and what they mean for developing your leadership skills and building a robust organizational culture. We will meet on February 18, 11:45 am to 1:00 pm, at the Renaissance Dallas Richardson Hotel. Please RSVP on our Meetup page; you can find directions and other details there. We meet in the restaurant.

Just as change is a constant and so are mistakes. We are human after all. Most people don’t intentionally make mistakes. What happens after a mistake is made makes all the difference. There are at least three dimensions to consider:

  • What does a leader do when they make a mistake?
  • What does a leader do when a team member makes a mistake?
  • How does an organizational culture view and handle mistakes that happen?

We will explore some of these questions during our leadership conversations.

To help prepare, highlighted are several articles on mistakes, leadership, and culture.

Mistakes and leadership:

10 Common Leadership and Management Mistakes. Key quote: “We all make mistakes, and there are some mistakes that leaders and managers make in particular. These include not giving good feedback, being too ‘hands-off,’ not delegating effectively, and misunderstanding your role. It’s true that making a mistake can be a learning opportunity. But, taking the time to learn how to recognize and avoid common mistakes can help you become productive and successful, and highly respected by your team.”

Human Leadership: Admitting Faults by Matt Monge. Key quote: “Leaders have to admit faults. Why is it so hard to do this? It could be a pride thing, sure; but it could also be that it’s simply hard, as a human being, to admit you’re wrong. No one that I know of especially enjoys doing that. I know it’s not at the top of my list of things to do. I’m sure most of you are the same.”

Mistakes and organizational culture:

Startup Company Culture by John Ousterhout. Key quote: “We also want a culture where everyone has an opportunity to contribute on any topic and in any way that they can. And finally, we want a constructive culture where criticism is viewed as a good thing and where we can work through problems and disconnects in a positive, non-personal fashion. The result will be an environment where we have lots of fun, learn and improve, and produce terrific results.”

Top 5 Reasons to Celebrate Mistakes at Work by Alexander Kjerulf. Key quote: “Peter Drucker provocatively suggested that businesses should find all the employees who never make mistakes and fire them, because employees who never make mistakes never do anything interesting. Admitting that mistakes happen and celebrating them when they do, makes mistakes less likely.”

Leading Conversation Agenda

Our meeting agenda is:

  • Forty-five second introduction: What do you want people to remember about you after the meeting? (10 minutes)
  • Question 1:  When a team member makes a mistake, how do you handle it? Share an example. When you have made a mistake, how did you handle it with others? Share your experiences. (20 minutes)
  • Question 2:  What role does organizational culture play when mistakes happen? What type of culture is the healthiest for purpose and profit? (20 minutes)
  • Wrap-up: Leadercast status, May 9th.

If you haven’t registered for Leadercast on May 9th, please consider joining us for this engaging event!

Leadership: Simon Sinek

Leadercast is bringing together many interesting and insightful leaders. Simon Sinek is one of the speakers in the Leadercast line-up on May 9th. Highlighted below is an interview between Chris Taylor of Actionable Books and Simon.

Leadership and trust with Simon Sinek from Actionable Books on Vimeo.

Enjoy learning from this engaging interview and explore Leadercast and join us in Plano, Texas, on May 9th.

Lead Ahead: Week of December 9, 2013

As Dallas begins to thaw this week, it may be from the sparks of calls to act more fully as leaders. Writers from Lead Change and Authentic Leadership Dallas amped things up and rightfully so. There is a leadership gap present, and this gap may be growing, unless we do something to step up in how we lead. As you read through the key quotes and click-through to read the full posts, it may be time to ask:

What can I do to become a more engaged leader and lead in a more purpose-driven way?

It is time. Lead well in the weeks ahead!

How to Lead Without Authority: 4 Easy Strategies by Krista Kotrla. Key quote: “Step up. Speak up. And brave up. Embrace responsibility even if you are faking it at first. Is it really fair to expect people to follow you and trust your ideas if you seem unsure of yourself or unwilling to accept full responsibility? Ask to take on new projects. Dream up a new initiative. Mess up, own up and describe what you learned from the experience. Try again. Deliver. Get results.”

Coherent Leadership by Mike Henry. Key quote: “We are coherent when our actions line up with our words, when people can understand what we’re trying to do and when we are sincere and uncomplex. Our actions will align with our most basic, primal leadership principles.”

How Leaders Create Positive Change? by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “A transformational leader focuses on positive change to help others to look out for each other, to be encouraging and harmonious, and to look out for the organization as a whole. With this leadership mindset, the leader enhances each person’s talent, morale and performance of his followers through positive change.”

Nelson Mandela Lead from the Back of the Room by Patti Johnson. Key quote: “Richard Stengel, editor of Time magazine, spent years interviewing Nelson Mandela and collaborated with him on his autobiography, Long Walk to Freedom. In an interview with Voice of America, Stengel said, ‘Lead from the front is the more conventional kind of leading that we know—getting up on the podium and giving a speech or saying follow me. But leading from the back is a different idea.’ Nelson Mandela embodied this idea of leading from behind. He provided the example and the values and let others lead.”

Craving Leadership by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “The real answer to address the leadership craving is this: All generations of leaders need to be engaged. The only way to solve the leadership challenges is by working across generations, understanding perspectives, and sharing experiences. By reaching across generations, we will close the leadership gap and enter a new era of trusted, engaging leadership.”

Are you ready to lead more completely?

Lead Ahead: Week of November 11, 2013

The theme this past week may be practices to enhance your craft of leading. In today’s world, social media opens up connection points we need to engage in. Social media provides a channel for feedback — receiving and giving, yet we still need to remember ageless feedback practices, too. Trust is always central to leading and vulnerability is in the mix. And, as we discussed at a previous Authentic Leadership Dallas meeting, we need to lead from wherever we are — title or not. A great mix of insights. Each will make us better leaders.

How Dell’s Social Media Strategy Applies to Your Business by Krista Kotrla. Key quote: “Dell ventures into each new social media channel with this strategy. Observe and listen first. Engage and act second. Every channel has it’s own set of rules and your business would be wise to treat them each uniquely. For instance, Dell discovered that while it is perfectly acceptable (and expected) to engage users who post comments about Dell on Twitter, it is not acceptable to engage users on Facebook in the same way.”

Apply 4 Tips and Avoid 4 Traps for Giving Feedback by Betsy Winkler. Key quote: “Giving feedback is often not easy to do as a leader, but it is essential. Some people need more of it than others, but everyone requires some amount of feedback.”

Is Leadership a Craft? by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “One caution: Don’t spend all your time on the sidelines learning your leadership craft without putting it into practice. Get in the arena and lead. Being in the arena, no matter where it is, will provide real advances to your leadership capabilities.”

Vulnerability: The Core of Trust by Mike Henry. Key quote: “As leaders, operating with our shields down means we’re free to do what’s best for everyone around us. Operating with our shields down means spending our best energy to make others successful. We bring our best self and our best energy to serve our team, our customers or our friends. We become a peer, an encourager and someone who is free to truly empathize with our team. We make our team better and that makes us the best leader we can be.”

How do you Lead from the Middle? A video conversation between Tal Shnall and Krista Kotrla, extending one of our monthly leadership conversations. Watch the exchange on this topic.

Lead well in the week ahead!

Lead Ahead: Week of October 28, 2013

From Authentic Leadership Dallas and community writers, the focus is on culture, purpose, change, and trust. All are critical topics and elements to embrace as a leader. Enjoy reading what is front-and-center for these Dallas-area thought leaders.

What Does a Content Marketing Culture Really Look Like? by Krista Kotrla. Key quote: “The truth is, a content marketing culture isn’t all about marketing. It is actually about serving your customers better and finding new ways to make a bigger impact. It just happens to sound a lot like marketing.”

How Leaders Create a Culture of Purpose by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “Great leaders take the time on a daily basis to have conversations about the company values and beliefs. Leading a culture with purpose is about connecting the message and the messenger to the culture. People want to feel connected to the overall mission, values and sustain positive relationships with their customers.”

What’s Your Next Big Thing. 4 Hints from Watching Samsung by Patti Johnson. Key quote: “Our customers, clients and partners need to see that we have new ideas to make their lives better too. You can introduce countless wonderful, new tools, features or programs, but unless the user or customer sees why it matters, it will come up short.”

Trust Principles for Creativity and Innovation by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “Just as trust is central in all of those things, it is also needed in creativity and innovation. Trust takes on a new role of being self-centered and community-centered. By embracing trust in his manner, it removes barriers and enables extension across boundaries, especially generational ones.”

Lead well in the week ahead!

Reading Behind to Lead Ahead: Week of September 30, 2013

Another great week from Dallas area and Lead Change leaders. From trust to energy to vision to taking breaks, there is a great mix to read and learn from. Thanks to a great leadership community!

Trust Is About Giving and Receiving by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “In the middle of giving and receiving trust, magic happens.”

Are You an Energetic Leader? by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “Energetic leaders don’t solve problems by themselves. They create an environment where people can perform and where diversity is valued and welcomed.”

The Value of Vision by Mike Henry. Key quote: “A compelling vision pulls you forward. It encourages others to join and changes the world. Is your vision one that will pull you through the hard times? Is it one that will energize others to believe, trust and act?”

10 Ways You Know You’re Working Waaaaay Too Much by Sheri Browning. Key quote: “Your 13 year old sings the background tunes to the conference call music he hears on speakerphone 8+ hours a day.”

Lead well in the week ahead!

Reading Behind to Lead Ahead: Week of September 23, 2013

Highlighted below are several posts from members of the Authentic Leadership Dallas and the Lead Change communities. Change, trust, and vision…. key leadership topics highlighted and required to lead fully and effectively.

How Leaders Can Step Up and Change the World by Tal Shnall. Key quote: “Choosing to show up in a situation whether at work or community, we are making a statement. We are leading by what we say and how we contribute. Not all leaders are alike. They all come in different shapes and forms, but the one thing attributed to great leaders is that they chose to show up and lead regardless of their title or position.”

Building Trust Between Generations – Six Ways by Jon Mertz. Key quote: “No matter our generation, trust begins with us. We need to take the necessary actions to build trust between generations. It is the way to learn from the lessons of history while working together for a better future.”

The Value of Vision by Mike Henry (Lead Change). Key quote: “A compelling vision pulls you forward. It encourages others to join and changes the world. Is your vision one that will pull you through the hard times? Is it one that will energize others to believe, trust and act?”

Lead well in the week ahead!