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How to be the best leader your direct reports ever had!

Got your attention?  OK let’s first acknowledge that being the best leader your direct reports ever had may not be too difficult.  In practice, the bar on leadership could be set higher, so following the pearls of wisdom imparted below may put you way on the top of the list.  Even if you have some […]

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Coaching Technical Leaders: A two-step approach to improving collaboration and leadership skills

Over the past several years, while working with hedge funds and banks, I have coached a number of leaders engaged in highly technical work. They work in complex areas such as quantitative research, electronic trading, and software development. Recently, I reviewed 22 coaching assignments with this population and this is the first of several articles describing […]

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Professional New Year Resolutions that work

Well it is January again, time for New Year resolutions. A time honored tradition that stems from our instinctive desire to improve ourselves. Problem is that resolutions often do not result in any real change. So here are some pointers for setting some professional resolutions that will result in positive change:

Focus on what you […]

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Common assessment mistakes and how to avoid them

People want easy solutions, especially to important and complex problems. So we look for the one exercise that will significantly change our bodies or the miracle diet that will take off that excess weight.  Easy solutions, like “planking” or “South Beach diet”, are fine as long as the problem isn’t too complex.

Very often, executive pre-hire […]

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A Four-Dimension Model for Group Leadership Assessment & Due Diligence

When asked what I do for a living, after resisting the urge to adopt an outlandishly exciting persona, I say that I help people and groups.  While I love my individual coaching work, I always get very excited when a client asks for help evaluating and addressing group-level issues.  It is fun and interesting work.  […]

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Coaching the reluctant leader: Transitioning executers into expanded leadership roles

Many of the individuals I coach are primarily executers who have obtained leadership positions through excelling in their respective disciplines. Professions which fall into this category include investment bankers, traders, lawyers, doctors, scientists and technologists. Often, it is as veterans that they are advanced into leadership roles requiring new responsibilities in areas that they have […]

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How do you stop the bad behavior of valuable talent? Put it in a box!

The core strategic advantage of most of the companies I have consulted with is their people. Unfortunately, sometimes the smartest and most productive talent engage in unproductive behavior. A head of a foreign exchange trading desk destroys his phone console on the trading floor in a fit of rage. An investment banker consistently loses patience […]

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Time allocation: Managing employee inventory of hours

A truism is that a primary role of an organization and its leaders is to improve the skills of its employees. While this may seem sacrilegious, I propose that skill development has been over emphasized and a faster route towards increasing productivity has been ignored. The shortest, most reliable, and most effective route towards increasing […]