This video is about how to become someone who is inspiring to those around you.

There are 4 key ingredients of the people that get the best out of the teams around them. I shared this talk with over 800 school heads, teaching leaders and educational leaders at the Global Forum on Girls Education in Washington on June 19 this year.

The book mentioned in the video is “The Leadership Challenge” by Kouzes and Posner.

Summary of The Leadership Challenge

Here’s a customer review by Daniel King on Amazon that gives a great summary of the book:

The Leadership Challenge is considered a classic on leadership principles. Kouzes and Posner have spent more than three decades studying the best practices of top leaders. In their book, they explain five practices that all great leaders engage in. Under these five practices, they also discuss ten commitments of exemplary leadership. Below are some of the ideas and quotes that stood out to me.

Practice 1 – Model the Way

1. The first step to being a great leader is to clarify your values.
  • “You must be able to “clearly articulate deeply held belief” (44).
  • “To find your voice, you have to explore your inner self. You have to discover what you care about most, what defines you, and what makes you who you are” (46).
  • Question: What values guide your current decisions, priorities, and actions? (69).
2. The second step is to set an example by aligning actions with shared values.
  • “Credibility is the foundation of leadership” (37). You have to practice what you preach. Do what you say you will do. (39).
  • “Titles are granted, but it’s your behavior that earns you respect” (16).
  • “Leader’s deeds are far more important than their words” (17).
  • “Leading by example is more effective than leading by command” (17).
  • “What you do speaks more loudly than what you say” (76).
  • Use stories to “pass on lessons about shared values” (91).
  • “How you spend your time is the single best indicator of what’s important to you” (96).
  • Question: How are you spending your time?

Practice 2 – Inspire a Shared Vision

3. The third step is to envision the future by imagining exciting and ennobling possibilities.
  • Vision begins with “one person’s imagination” (103).
  • “Leaders are dreamers. Leaders are idealists. Leaders are possibility thinkers” (105).
  • “Leaders need to spend considerable time reading, thinking, and talking about the long-term view, not only for their specific organization but also for the environment in which they operate” (110).
  • “Imagination is more important than intelligence” – Albert Einstein (112).
  • It is easier to drive fast when there is no fog on the road. This “analogy illustrates the importance of clarity of vision…You’re better able to go fast when your vision is clear” (123).
  • Question: What do you care about? What drives you? Where do your passions lie? What do you want to accomplish and why? (126). What ideas and visions do you hold in your mind of what can be? (100).
4. The fourth step is to enlist others in a common vision by appealing to shared aspirations.
  • “You can’t command commitment; you have to inspire it. You have to enlist others in a common vision by appealing to shared aspirations” (18).
  • “No matter how grand the dream of an individual visionary, if others don’t see in it the possibility of realizing their own hopes and desires, they won’t follow voluntarily or wholeheartedly” (117).
  • “The best leaders are great listeners (118).
  • “People commit to causes, not to plans” (121).
  • “People aren’t going to follow someone who’s only mildly enthusiastic about something. Leaders have to be wildly enthusiastic for constituents to give it their all” (129).
  • “Visions are about ideals. They’re about hopes, dreams, and aspirations. They’re about the strong desire to achieve something great. They’re ambitious. They’re expressions of optimism. Can you imagine a leader enlisting other in a cause by saying, “I’d like you to join me in doing the ordinary?” (130).
  • “Feeling special fosters a sense of pride” (134).
  • “Show people how their dreams will be realized” (138).
  • “Visions are images in the mind…They become real as leaders express those images in concrete terms to their constituents” (143).
  • Question: What common ideas are you appealing to? (152).

Practice 3 – Challenge the Process

5. The fifth step is to search for opportunities by seizing the initiative and looking outward for innovative ways to improve.
  • “Maintaining the status quo simply breeds mediocrity” (156).
  • 100% of the shots you do not take will miss going into the basket (166).
  • “Find ways for people to stretch themselves. Set the bar incrementally higher, but at a level at which people feel they can succeed” (169).
  • “Be on the lookout for new ideas, wherever you are” (181).
  • Question: What are you doing new today in order to become better than yesterday?
6. The sixth step is to experiment and take risks by constantly generating small wins and learning from experience.
  • “Nothing new and nothing great is achieved by doing things the way you’ve always done them. You have to test unproven strategies…break out of the norms that box you in…venture beyond the limitations you normally place on yourself” (188).
  • “Big things are done by doing lots of little things” (196).
  • “It is hard to argue with success” (197).
  • “Small wins produce results because they make people feel like winners and make it easier for leaders to get others to want to go along with their requests” (199).
  • “Learning is the master skill” (202).
  • Question: How are you changing, improving, growing, and innovating?

Practice 4 – Enable others to Act

7. The seventh step is to foster collaboration by building trust and facilitating relationships.
  • “The team is larger than any individual on the team” (21).
  • “‘We’ can’t happen without trust” (219).
  • “When you create a climate of trust, you create an environment that allows people to freely contribute and innovate” (222).
  • “Placing trust in others is the safer bet with most people most of the time” (223).
  • “People have to believe that you know what you’re talking about and that you know what you’re doing” (226).
  • “Once you help others succeed, acknowledge their accomplishments, and help them shine, they’ll never forget it” (234).
  • “Demonstrate that you trust them before you ask them to trust you” (239).
  • Question: Who are you willing to trust?
8. The eighth step is to strengthen others by increasing self-determination and developing competence.
  • “The paradox of power: you become more powerful when you give your own power away” (244).
  • “Feeling powerful…comes from a deep sense of being in control of your own life” (246).
  • “Individual accountability is a critical element of every collaborative effort” (252).
  • “The more freedom of choice people have, the more personal responsibility they must accept” (253).
  • “If your constituents aren’t growing and learning in their jobs, they’re highly likely to leave and find better ones” (261).
  • Question: Do the people around you feel powerful?

Practice 5 – Encourage the Heart

9. The ninth step is to recognise contributions by showing appreciation.
  • “The climb to the top is arduous and steep. People become exhausted, frustrated, and disenchanted, and are often tempted to give up. Genuine acts of caring draw people forward. “recognition is the most powerful currency you have and it costs you nothing.” (23).
  • “Say Thank You” (294).
  • “Spontaneous, unexpected rewards are often more meaningful than expected, formal ones” (292).
  • Question: Do you say “thank you” enough?
10. The tenth step is to celebrate values and victories by creating a spirit of community.
  • “Leaders never get extraordinary things accomplished all by themselves” (30).
  • “Celebrate accomplishments in public” (307).
  • “Get personally involved…leadership is a relationship” (315).
  • “Make celebrations part of organizational life” (323).
  • Question: Who are you celebrating?

The 3rd Edition of TEDxIESEBarcelona is on today.  Here’s the agenda, a link to the livestream and a playlist of previous talks. (If you can see the embedded viewer via email, check it out here on the blog).

The Event has Finished.  I will share the videos here when they become available.

 

The Agenda for 7 April 2018

Talks from Previous TEDxIESEBarcelona

While you are waiting for the livestream to start today at 15:00 CET, you can check out some of the 19 previous talks on the stage of the Aula Magna at IESE Business School in Barcelona.

Some Tweets from #TEDxIESEBarcelona

https://twitter.com/search?q=%23TEDxIESEBarcelona

 

Life is much better today than ever before.  I guess the challenge is that we have improved all of the lower parts of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, but lost a lot of the institutions and connections that helped people explore the higher elements of meaning, connection, significance and self-transcendence.

Check out the improved quality of life over the last 200 years…

  • Extreme Poverty: from 94% to 10%
  • Basic Education: from 17% to 86%
  • Literacy: from 12% to 85%
  • Vaccination: from 0% to 86%
  • Child Mortality: from 43% to 4%

Thanks to my brother for sharing the infographic 😉

Kilian Jornet, 29, is widely considered the world’s best ultra-distance and mountain runner. Last month, he conquered Mount Everest twice in one week without using supplemental oxygen or fixed ropes. A project called Summits of My Life has taken him to the peaks of Matterhorn, Mont Blanc, Denali and Aconcagua. Here’s 3 videos of Kilian in the mountains with his friend and cameraman Seb Montaz…

 

 

What about our Weekend Plans?

What’s your plan for the weekend?

I’ve just added another great Commencement speech to my youtube playlist: Commencement Speeches

Emmanuel Faber gave the commencement address at HEC this year, 2016.

The first half is in french, the last in english.  Emmanuel tells a powerful personal story, describes 3 diseases, and asks us a question…

This is a powerful speech.  You’ve got to watch the video to hear Emmanuel’s story…

The 3 Diseases…

  1. Power – People who have power but do nothing with it, only protect their hold on power… Power makes sense only if you serve a purpose.
  2. Money – You chase money, you become a prisoner of money. Remember why you chase the money.
  3. Glory – Hall of fame is so that people can look at their own name.  Don’t lose yourself just to see your name on a wall.

The Question

Who will you allow to ask you the important questions?   (Who is your brother?)

Watch Emmanuel’s speech here:

“There is magic in front of us… if we pay attention.” Mariano Torrente

This is the first video released by the TED organisation from the recent TEDxIESEBarcelona event. Mariano Torrente is a magician who will graduate with the MBA class of 2016.  (Watch it here.)

Where Amazing Happens

Amazing things happen right in front of us every day, but human beings have lost the capability to become inspired by the little things. Mariano uses magic to show us that everyone has the ability to cultivate awe and wonder from their daily lives.

Mariano was born in Huesca, a small town in the North of Spain, and moved to Madrid when he was 18. He is a professional business person with a twinkle in his eye; his experience is in consulting, and his passion is in magic and the art of Illusion. Mariano’s capability of mixing those two world in his daily life is truly inspiring, and he takes the TEDxIESEBarcelona stage at IESE Business School in Barcelona, to describe the lens through which he views life.

This poem was shared by Warren Rustand during the Entrepreneurs’ Organisation Leadership Academy 2016 course held in Washington last year.  It was part of his description of why he spends so much time teaching.  I loved the sentiment expressed by Warren, and captured in this poem:

pablo (14)

The Bridge Builder

Will Allen Dromgoole

An old man going a lone highway,
Came, at the evening cold and gray,
To a chasm vast and deep and wide.
Through which was flowing a sullen tide
The old man crossed in the twilight dim,
The sullen stream had no fear for him;
But he turned when safe on the other side
And built a bridge to span the tide.

“Old man,” said a fellow pilgrim near,
“You are wasting your strength with building here;
Your journey will end with the ending day,
You never again will pass this way;
You’ve crossed the chasm, deep and wide,
Why build this bridge at evening tide?”

The builder lifted his old gray head;
“Good friend, in the path I have come,” he said,
“There followed after me to-day
A youth whose feet must pass this way.
This chasm that has been as naught to me
To that fair-haired youth may a pitfall be;
He, too, must cross in the twilight dim;
Good friend, I am building this bridge for him!”

What are you doing the rest of your life?

Here’s Warren speaking at a recent conference:

Are you living your life on cruise control?  Warren suggests this is a poor response to life.  Warren suggests that easing through life is not the right path.  We want to be “spent by the battle of life”.

Life might be more enriched by doing it a bit differently.

Here’s a blog post summary of a seminar by Warren from Marisa Levin (an EO member): http://successfulculture.com/culture-of-greatness/

An effective statement of mission should be short, sharp and direct. It should fit on a t-shirt. Not a font 8 squeeze, but a legible font.

Every person who is involved should be able to articulate how their contribution adds to that mission. If not, then you don’t have a mission. You have a hopeful statement written by a board and not lived by an organisation.

pablo (13)

A Mission Is Not About What is Possible Today

“Never start with tomorrow to reach eternity. Eternity is not reached by small steps.” John Donne

A mission is not guided by what we can do today, what we do today is guided by the mission. If you start with the believably possible, you won’t create a mission you will draft a plan. Martin Luther did not say “I have a plan”. If he did, he would have had the auditors and accountants with him, but no actual people.

JFK said “a man on the moon by the end of the decade”. That’s not a plan. That’s a mission.

Norman Foster has designed some impossible buildings…. and then the engineers have found new ways to build.

Creating Mission: Start from “what problem do you want to solve”?  Don’t start from “what you know how to do”.  

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 14.53.22
Father explains Paris to his son

I want share a conversation between a 3 year old boy and his father in Paris the day after the Bataclan attack.  I love the way the father speaks with his son.

His words do not undo the damage and the pain; nothing does.  Families have lost sons, daughters, brothers and sisters.  They are in pain.  Their pain is real.  Our pain is real.

It is how we choose to respond to the pain that is important.

A Conversation about Paris:

Son:  “We have to move home Daddy”
Father: “Don’t worry, We don’t have to change house. France is our home”

Son: “But there’s bad guys Daddy”
Father: “Yes, but there are bad guys everywhere.  There are mean people everywhere.”

Son: “They have guns. They can shoot us.  They are really, really mean Daddy.”
Father: “They have guns, we have flowers”

Son: “But flowers don’t do anything.”
Father: “Of course they do…  look…  everyone is putting flowers.  Its to fight against guns.”

Son: “It can protect?”
Father: “Yes.”

Son: “And candles?  can they protect?”
Father: “Yes.  Its to remember the people who are gone yesterday.”

Son: “The flowers and the candles are here to protect us?”
Father: “Yes.”

See the conversation:

About the Paris Attacks:

 

Email has almost completely replaced the written letter.  This creates an opportunity.  Written letters are so rare that they really stand out.  You can really benefit from this special attention, but maybe nobody ever taught you the art of good letter writing.  Here is a short guide…

The blog “The Art of Manliness” has some comic takes on the art of being a “man”.  I find it funny.  They had a recent series that was really helpful:  templates for letters that we each should know how to write.  Their template for a letter of condolence was a real help for me recently as I couldn’t think of how to start writing a letter to a friend who had faced a tragic loss.

7 Letters to Write Before You Turn 70

The 7 Letters are:

  1. A Letter of Congratulations – (check out this guide)
  2. A Letter to Your Father – (see this article)
  3. A Letter of Condolence/Sympathy – (see this article)
  4. A Letter to Your Future Self – (No guide, but here is my own version of a letter to my future self from 2008)
  5. A Love Letter – (check out this guide)
  6. A Letter of Gratitude – (How to write thank you notes)
  7. A Letter of Encouragement – No guide, some tips given below…

How many of these letters have you’ve already written?  Which types of letters are your favourite to write and to receive?

How (and Why) to Write A Letter of Encouragement

 

opening-mail-noteI often forget the power of a few of my words of encouragement for the people around me.  I make it a habit to write thank you letters, but have decided to add encouragement letters to this habit.

I know many people who have faced hard economic times over the last 5 years as Europe faces the continuing fallout after the financial crash of 2008.

A letter of encouragement tells someone in the midst of a hard time that you’ve got their back and have faith in their ability to continue on or find a way out.

A letter can be more powerful than a phone call or a face to face talk.  Letters are so rare as to be special these days.  The power of the letter is in its permanence.  It can continue to give motivation days, months and years later because the words are always available.  The letter form often allows me to express clearly emotions that I might avoid in a face to face meeting.

The format for encouragement is the praise format that Ken Blanchard first shared with me.  Create a distinct separation between the quality of the person and the state of the project.  First, acknowledge that not all is going to plan and it must feel heartbreaking.  Second, let the person know the important qualities you recognise in them.  That’s all.  Sign your name and put it in the post.

I think this letter can be short.  In my past, it was the thought that mattered.  The fact that someone cared enough to reach out.

I have had times where I have struggled with setbacks and doubt, times when I was tempted to abandon the path.  I have been lucky in that friends, mentors and family members have stepped in with words, emails or letters of encouragement at important moments.  (Thanks friends… you know who you are!).

Who will you encourage today?

Maybe a friend has lost their job and is starting to lose hope of ever finding another good position.  Maybe an entrepreneur has recently been rejected from an accelerator program and is not sure whether they are good enough.  Maybe a friend is going through a tough time in their relationship, or is facing a family health challenge that is starting to tire them out.

Who do you know who is facing a real challenge and could really benefit from a couple of words of encouragement from you?