Donna's blog on coaching, leadership, and life

Random thoughts about leadership.

Every once and a while I jot down a random idea from my experiences or observations at work. Here are a few that I’ve noted in the last several months, so I thought I’d share them. I hope you find one or more helpful…or at the least, validating.

– When you’re up against an important or taxing decision, and you’ve already gathered the data you need, but you’re still perplexed—if you have the luxury of time—let it simmer. Letting go of it for a bit and taking a relaxed approach to creative or strategic thinking will generate a great deal more new and helpful ideas. Frantic thinking will generate stress and often paralyze your ability to move forward.

– If you google the term “leadership development models” you’ll see that there are 32 million links available on the subject. It’s comforting to know I’m not the only one who couldn’t possibly keep up.

– If you have a leadership role, but no one is following you, are you still a leader or are you just the person struggling with the higher-paying job?

– In an effort to demonstrate action, I often see leaders promise more than they, or their teams, can deliver. Want to build your team’s trust? Promise only what you know you can deliver, and engage your teams to set target dates that involve their participation.

– Leaders often measure organizational success only by profitability. In my experience, what’s most important to measure is what’s behind the scenes keeping the profitability sustainable.

– I always find it so interesting that leaders or managers are baffled by someone’s lack of accountability. Yet, they seldom ask themselves why they allow it.

– The most awesome and successful leaders I’ve met or worked with—and who are most respected by their employees—have a perfect balance between business acumen and people skills.

How about you? Do you have any random thoughts about leadership that you’d like to share?



  Jeremy Marchant wrote @

It strikes me you are only thinking of leadership in the context of business (“The most awesome and successful leaders I’ve met or worked with… have a perfect balance between business acumen and people skills”). It may be that some people with business acumen are leaders and some leaders have business acumen, but the possession of the latter doesn’t have any bearing on whether someone is a leader. What about leaders who are philopsophers, violinists or nurses?

  Donna Rawady wrote @

Your comment is well taken, Jeremy, thank you. Like you, I experience and recognize awesome leaders in every walk of life, many of who may not possess business acumen. The random thoughts shared in this entry, as well as most of my posts, are a reflection of my work, which centers on leadership in the business arena. And I can understand how it may be interpreted as a somewhat narrow view. Thanks again for your comment.

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