Thursday, April 23, 2015

How can I change my personality for the better???

In the post Leadership and Charisma I stated that leadership is all about personality. What exactly did I mean?

Merriam-webster dictionary offers a definition of ‘personality’ as:

  • the set of emotional qualities, ways of behaving, etc., that makes a person different from other people;
  • the condition or fact of relating to a particular person;
  • a set of distinctive traits and characteristics.

American Psychological Associations offers a ‘personality’ definition as it refers to individual differences in characteristic patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving. The study of personality focuses on two broad areas – first, understanding individual differences in particular personality characteristics, such as sociability or irritability and second, understanding how the various parts of a person come together as a whole.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Leadership way: Wing Chun or Karate

Wing ChunIn my posts Wing Chun basics 4 Leadership and Wing Chun in Leadership I have already explained about Wing Chun principles. They are very well connected with Chinese thoughts and philosophies. They are based on the Yin and Yang principle, meaning soft and hard or motion and stillness, attack and defense—they all come from each other. This may be the most important theory in China.

What about Karate?

OkinavaIt is well known fact that Karate originates from Okinava, Japan. It was developed under the influence of Chinese martial arts, particularly Fujian White Crane which is thought to be the origin of Wing Chun too. It was brought to Okinava in 14th century. Gichin Funakoshi, the founder of Shotokan Karate, is generally credited with having introduced and popularized Karate on the main islands of Japan in 20th century. At the time when the martial art named Karatejutsu (the art of ‘Tang/China dynasty hand’) was renamed, by homophone, into ‘way of the empty hand’ and ‘do’ (road, path, route, way) – Karatedo. As Funakoshi had trained two other popular branches of Okinawan Karate at the time, Shorin-ryu and Shorei-ryu,  influenced by Kendo he assimilated some ideas with regard to distancing and timing into his Shotokan style.

Friday, April 10, 2015

How to (not) energize the team?

positive energy
How can a leader create a positive energy and still energize the team even when he is not present or feeling hopeless, angry and demotivated?

I should mention that leading people is not a herding livestock as may be too often in many organizations.

Long ago I had a boss who did precisely that. On our regular staff meetings his “normal” manner was to yell at us. Whoever did not perform according to his way of thinking was immediately rebuked. Once, when we were all gathered together, he started with the account department manager and kept on with his offensive manners from “victim to victim”. Instead of helping to clear or solve the situations he kept accusing people of incompetency.  When it was my turn I stopped him by asking “Hey, we are not stock that you yell on us?”

to yellMy question provoked a complete silence and a big surprised shock on my boss’ face. In the moment he regained composure he began to yell even louder. I stood up saying that if he does not change the manner I am leaving the meeting. The answer to that was just another hit: “If you leave the meeting you do not need to return any more!” So I left. A big surprise and shock for others and even bigger for him. My coworkers were more afraid for me than I was while I was leaving the room. Not yet far down the corridor I heard my boss’s voice “Come back immediately!” I kept going to my office. The accountant manager was right behind me telling me to immediately return before I was fired. After a few thoughts I said “I would love to see on which grounds” and sat at my desk.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Leadership and values

In my post on Virtue – Morality – Ethics and leadership I have written down that virtue motivates, morals and ethics constrain.

Most of the times people tend to mix virtue, morals and ethics not having a clear idea which term to use and when. We are asked for an ethical behavior or moral business and at the same time are explained that values have changed in last decades. The subject is doubtlessly too valuable. What is usually missing is an important measurement framing. Why?
Values are our fundamental beliefs. They are the principles we use to define that which is right, good and just. They guide us when we determine right versus wrong, good versus bad. We could name them our standards since we compare or evaluate deeds whether they meet that standard or fall short of it.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Leading a team

What comes to mind at the term “team leading?”

team leading
If what comes to mind is: define and articulate the objectives and measures; get the right people on — and off — the bus; demonstrate to the team that you are invested in the success; make decisions; if you aren't asking people to do something, they won’t do it - you definitely  come from MBA program.

Ask notable innovation leaders what they think about traditional management practices (those taught in a typical MBA program) and you’ll likely get some pretty strong reactions. Intuit co-founder Scott Cook “When MBAs come to us, we have to retrain them fundamentally -nothing they've learned will help them succeed at innovation” wrote Nathan Furr and Jeffrey H. Dyer in their HBR December 2014 issue article “LEADING YOUR TEAM INTO THE UnKNOWN.”

TeamIn my previous blogs I've already proved several times over that leadership is not an easy task. It takes all of your personality and more. Team members need to have a sense of who you are. As a leader you are building relationships with your team members. That means you should behave “appropriately” and show your values, the way you think, how you make decisions, what your definition of success is, how you measure performance, how you expect them to work, and you have to gain their trust in your leading. Yes, you need to gain authority, but it is also important to trust the team with control over their work. A leader who gives his power to others can be more influential and motivating than the one that doesn't. When you empower someone, you're actually demonstrating that you trust.