Olympic Leadership Lessons
The XXXII Summer Olympics are upon us…and like everything else in the past 16 months, these Games are unlike any other. I love the Olympics when the world‘s greatest athletes come together to compete for the highest honor in armature sports.
I had the good fortune to attend the 1976 Summer Olympic Games in Montreal Canada and the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia. Two decades apart and many lessons learned from both.
In 1976 I had never been more than 600 miles from my hometown in Florida. There I was in Montreal, where the primary language was French! People from around the globe were gathered wearing their national colors, speaking their native languages. I remember meeting people from Mongolia, Singapore, Russia, and Turkey. What an experience! The universal language was a smile. My eyes were opened that the world is a big place with so many different points of view, yet the common denominator can be a smile and...
Why do certain groups add up to be greater than the sum of their parts while others add up to be less?I have worked with organizations around the country of different sizes and shapes. I marvel at the success of some groups and the challenges of others.
Team culture is one of the most powerful forces on the planet and one of the most difficult things to put together and maintain. A Harvard study of more than 200 companies over 11 years revealed that a strong team culture increased the net income of those companies by 750%!
I LOVE Teams which is in part why I love hospice. We were the first to require interdisciplinary teams where everyone’s voice is valued.
Think about the most well-functioning teams in your organization and see if they have these components:
A shared exchange of openness and vulnerability is the most basic building block of cooperation and...
Have you noticed all of the “noise” in your life lately? The constant chatter on emails, texting, Face Book, Twitter, political debates, talk radio and talking head news, it is endless. It seems everyone is talking but is anyone really listening? Social media offers so many options to “connect” with anyone, anywhere, anytime that a conversation now consists of emojis or single letters vs words.
While it’s wonderful to instantly send off a text or email to a friend or colleague for quick interactions, yet at the end of the day, how meaningful are those exchanges? Are you reminiscing about the beautiful text you received and how it made you feel as you’re falling asleep at night? Or are you feeling frustrated because your in-box is overflowing, and you don’t have time or energy to respond to everyone who wants something from you?
Many of my clients have the problem of staff “over-sharing” emails. ...
Each of these very different men found himself at the epicenter of world-shaking crises, and brought the nation through it to safety. Fortunately, most of us will never be tasked with dealing with that level of upheaval and uncertainty – but as leaders in our own spheres, there’s plenty to learn from their experiences. As different as they were, these four presidents shared some very important traits, qualities of character which Goodwin suggests were...
Being a leader in uneventful times takes focus and attention. Leading in times of chaos is a whole different thing. Nowadays, organizations all over the country hone their readiness for emergencies with “disaster drills” that prepare them to function in all manner of catastrophes; calamitous weather events, onsite shooter drills, and multi-casualty incidents like train wrecks or plane crashes.
But I live in Florida, home of the hurricanes, and I’m not talking about the University of Miami mascot. I’m talking about Michael, and Irma, and Andrew; storms that have brought such widespread and stunning devastation that it is difficult to describe in words.
I know that every part of the country is afflicted with some kind of natural disaster - wildfires and earthquakes out West, tornadoes on the Great Plains, and Snowmageddon-sized blizzards in the North - but for me, hurricanes mean autumn in Florida – a far cry from beautifully colored leaves gently...
Image Above: From the Kaiser Philanthropy Institute, design by Christy Whitney
Courage, passion, commitment, communication, humility – these make every list of critical leadership skills, and they’re certainly required in abundance of anyone who leads or manages in hospice. But to me, the most important gift is the ability to inspire and motivate those around you. Why? Hospice work is demanding, physically and emotionally – but patients and their families need you to bring 100% of your skills, compassion, and stamina to work every day. Keeping our people inspired to be their best, most compassionate selves requires us to model that behavior – to walk the walk – in how we deal with them.
How do you inspire? By remembering why you’re there, and sharing that why with your staff; by getting out of your office and into the field; by being a mentor more than a taskmaster, and sharing stories of staff successes.
What’s Your Story? If someone...