To tap the full potential of these agents for change, organisations must listen and push beyond assumptions.
Carolyn was thrilled when she was offered a role in China. A high flyer in her Dutch organisation and fluent in Mandarin, she believed this was the perfect opportunity to get the international experience that she wanted. However, her boss suggested that it would be difficult for a woman to lead a team for this particular project in China. While his intentions might have been good, his comments left her feeling vulnerable to concerns about gender bias and her ability to handle it.
She knew that the decisions she would have to make in an unfamiliar context would be scrutinised. Carolyn could run into difficulties related to language. While these factors risked eroding some of her self-confidence, she was determined to enter this complex negotiation and decision-making arena. Due to her gender and culture, Carolyn was used to standing out and knew how to benefit from different perspectives. She would probably need to be much better than the men who had previously held the same position to be appreciated. Continue reading →
As a part of our talent acquisition engagements, we ask our clients how they define “top talent” and how they would assess those traits in the interview process. Reflecting on the insightful comments we hear every day, we thought there would be great value in a new blog in which senior executives/thought leaders share their “Take on Talent.”
This is the seventeenth in a series of blogs/interviews with senior executives who are thought leaders in the areas of Talent Acquisition, Career Development and Leadership who will share their perspectives on this ever present question.
Paul is the President of Thirdbridge, a high growth, private equity backed disrupter in the research space. Third Bridge provides institutional investors like private equity firms, hedge funds and mutual funds with the information that they need to make better investments.
Before joining Third Bridge, Paul was President of Axiom Law, the leading disrupter in the corporate legal industry, where he scaled the business and oversaw a six-fold increase in size. He also held senior roles at American Express and BCG, and has a wealth of experience across the US, Asia and Europe.
Paul has a Masters of Business Administration from Melbourne Business School.
If you think your boss is some freak of nature and you’re the luckiest person alive, I’ll break it to you gently: He or she is human and will make mistakes.
The great ones rise up from their errors by A) acknowledging they made a mistake and correcting a behavior (think humility), or B) acknowledging a blind spot that needs to be addressed, then doing something about it.
Lets dive into a few prevalent leadership mistakes that even the best and smartest leaders tend to make.
1. The mistake of not giving employees a listening ear.
I recently wrote about the powerful business practice of “stay interviews.” Unlike the exit interview, this concept is predicated on listening to employees’ feedback to get fresh insight into improving the work environment that will help retain those valued employees today–not after they have emotionally disconnected and turned in their resignations. Leaders who check hubris at the door and listen authentically in this manner build trust, but even the smartest of leaders have this blind spot where they don’t leverage active listening skills to build and support culture. The message coming across to employees is that they’re not seen as important and part of the family — a critical mistake even for the brightest leaders. Continue reading →
The single most important skill of a good leader may not be what you think. Although it is important to be visionary and a strategic thinker, a new study suggests that it’s more rooted in their daily dealings with people.
According to DDI, the leader who’s mastered having successful conversations is most likely to do well steering their team and/or their business. “By the end of each day, leaders likely have had multiple conversations with a range of their constituents,” DDI’s researchers write. “Each of these interactions will collectively determine their ultimate success as a leader.” Continue reading →
There’s a dangerous black hole in your organization, and if you are in the C-Suite you don’t even know it exists. Whether you realize it or not, you have a leadership blind spot.
This black hole usually exists either right below your nose or two rungs down and, day by day, it’s sucking the life right out of your business.
Before I can shed light on this hole you are missing, I need you to understand something very, very important: You are not going to be able to lean on your go-to staff right below you to help you solve this. Not yet. Not until you get an awareness of it yourself. If you don’t understand the issue first, you will remain locked in the blind spot. I’ll explain why momentarily. Continue reading →