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Doug, great post!  There are some excellent one sentence quotes in here.


I have a slightly different perspective on your #1:  "Antz: making a difference starts with being different."  I see that as "Making a difference starts with thinking different."  Differences by themselves do not *create* action.  People that make a difference are those that look at those differences and ask "Why?" and "Why not?" and then undertake actions to address those questions and their implications.  This viewpoint is perhaps reflected in my bias for more critical thinking in our society today.


Nevertheless, as a Dreamworks fan, I enjoyed what you wrote.  What's next - the "12 Most Animated Leadership Lessons from Pixar Movies?"

2 years, 10 months ago on 12 Most Animated Leadership Lessons from Dreamworks Movies


@margieclayman Agree but businesses need to understand what the CSFs are for making "the benjamins." Using social media as a marketing tool w/o knowing if your marketing/broadcast messages are going to resonate is not a good investment. Listening can provide insights for marketing content to have the right context, be meaningful, and have resonance. Resonance can cause change, e.g. drive sales.

3 years, 2 months ago on Mark Your Calendars! #tweetdiner and the Social Media ROI Question!


If social media is first and foremost about listening, then is social media ROI not about "Return on Investment" but about "Return on Insights?" If listening provides insights that in turn drive specific initiatives, then focusing on insights as a pre-condition for investment changes the equation.

3 years, 2 months ago on Mark Your Calendars! #tweetdiner and the Social Media ROI Question!


Great post, Meghan - as always. I especially liked that you called out continuous learning, listening, and compassion. As @luissv stated in his comment, these are sometimes "forgotten values."

Leaders are also:

Courageous - Leaders exhibit courage by standing up for ideas, actions, and principles that they believe in - perhaps in the face of popular opposition or discouragement. This also means standing up for and being accountable for the actions of the people in their organization or enterprise.

Critical Thinkers - Leaders continuously apply critical thinking skills to what they do. They understand the importance of asking the right questions at the right time. They can separate the "noise" from the "signal" and distill answers down to the one that matters. This aligns with your "Focus" trait. They can bring a non-linear thinking perspective to issues that others see as linear-based challenges.

Inspirational - This addresses influence. Leadership is all about influencing (not controlling) and inspiring others to work together to achieve goals. Leaders may have to work with diverse communities whose common goals are not necessarily aligned in order to do this. Leaders also inspire others (as individuals or as a team, community, organization, or enterprise) to do more than they thought themselves capable of doing.

Team Builders - Leaders have a knack for finding the right people and putting those people in positions that maximize their skills and experience for good of the organization. Ideally, these people will be smarter than the leader in their functional disciplines. Their collective intelligence benefits the organization and the organization's mission.

Mentors - Simply put, leaders develop people for positions of increased responsibility. Next to getting things done (your "Able to solve problems" trait), this is another critical leadership trait. Leaders need to relish this trait and responsibility to be truly effective at it.

Selfless - At their core, leaders need to be selfless with a strong desire for service to others. This includes the people that they are responsible for within the organization as well as the people, customers, and communities that their organization serves outside of the organization.

3 years, 7 months ago on 12 Most Essential Leadership Traits


Great list! It is very focused on leaders enabling their people to do things. From this perspective, I would add "Leaders get things done." This doesn't mean that they themselves get things done but they know how to motivate and influence others to achieve goals and deliver results. In the course of doing this, 1 - 12 all apply. This isn't explicitly called out in your list but it is the most important attribute of a leader.

Additionally, "Leaders surround themselves with the right people." This is critical to getting things done. With a few exceptions (small teams), leaders need to rely on a core team to help them. They need to know what attributes that core team should have. The people in the core team don't need to be the "smartest people in the room" but they need to be able to work together (have chemistry), know how to collectively leverage their knowledge and experience so it counts, and to your #3, unflinchingly provide input and feedback to the leader.

3 years, 7 months ago on 12 Most Attractive Qualities of A Great Leader


Great post, Lisa! Baxter healthcare clearly looks to be an example of a company that listens to stakeholder feedback on its products and services and used that feedback to develop an innovative product. There's probably an excellent story / case study here. Was anything ever written in more detail about this effort that you led?

An important point to remember with leadership delegation is that while authority can be delegated, responsibility cannot. Leaders are responsible for what results or doesn't result from what their people do. It's easy for leaders (and their people) to be acknowledged for successes. A telling leadership test is to observe how leaders react when there are failures. Do they "roll their people under the bus" or do they step forward and acknowledge that what happened is their responsibility?

3 years, 9 months ago on Smart Leadership: Delegating Bravely Leads to $50 Million Innovation