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Intentional Leadership

Intentional Leadership

  • Critical challenges can make strong leaders
  • Three game changers affect leadership: Stakeholder demands, the workforce and changing strategies
  • Four fallacies about leadership make adaptability and rapid change more difficult
  • Time spent on a job doesn’t improve a leader’s soft skills; that requires deliberate prioritization
  • Most leaders believe they do not need mentoring
  • The “Big 8” leadership capabilities are adaptability, strategic agility, self-renewal, character, empathy, communication, collaboration and developing other leaders
  • Talent development is the most vital of the Big 8 capabilities


119 reads

Critical challenges can make leaders stronger

Enduring a crisis can build a leader’s skills. 

“A leader locked into the tried and true of yesterday and being unable to let go is following a recipe for failure and obsolescence.”

Organizations react to the speed, systemic nature and volatility of change by developing new ways of doing business, new operating systems and fresh customer service strategies.

Leaders should examine how they acted while under pressure, consider the effects of these “defining moments,” and reflect on what they learned as they dealt with challenges that forced them to change and grow.


89 reads

Three game changers affect leadership: Stakeholder demands, the workforce and changing strategies

Focus on three factors that drive change and affect the demands on a leader: stakeholder expectations, the shifting characteristics of the workforce and the workplace, and the effectiveness and duration of “short-lived strategies and digital dominance.”



78 reads

“Leadership must be prepared for and respond to a constant sense of urgency.”

In the past, boards of directors were concerned primarily with their organization’s strategy and how it was implemented. Then their concerns shifted to ethical considerations. More recently, however, they have turned their focus to leaders’ agility in adapting strategies quickly enough to meet changing circumstances.


67 reads

Four fallacies about leadership make adaptability and rapid change more difficult

Four mistaken beliefs about how leadership works make it harder for leaders to succeed. First, people believe, without evidence, that the ability to lead remains constant – that strong leaders always remain strong. They suggest, again, without evidence, that a leader’s soft skills naturally improve over time, without deliberate development. They mistakenly think that outstanding performers can always advance to become great leaders. And they erroneously believe that only junior executives need mentors.


55 reads

The nature of leadership changes. It is “dynamic; it is not static.” Leadership shifts because the context in which businesses operate also changes. Leaders must be able to change their perceptions and give up even long held points of view.


54 reads

“Leadership is…learned and is strengthened through lifelong learning.”

One kind of change occurs within a known context, and fits into the broad, familiar framework that supported those in leadership as they rose to their positions of power. In the second form, a leader must grapple with a dramatically altered context, adapt and think beyond the “tried and true.”


50 reads

Time spent doing a job doesn’t improve a leader’s soft skills; that requires deliberate prioritization

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you make them feel.” (Poet Maya Angelou).

Leaders must learn to be aware of how they affect other people and how much their employees notice what they do. They must act with thoughtful intent. However, many leaders fail to work deliberately on developing self-awareness, a deficit that hampers their ability to perform well or to empathize with other people, and that may lead to failure. 


51 reads

Most senior leaders believe they do not need mentoring

Most leaders think they know their own strengths and weaknesses, but almost 80% have either a weakness or a strength they conceal. Often, they are not introspective and simply feel confident because they have a long track record of success. 

Mentors can help leaders see more deeply into areas they have, for whatever reason, blinded themselves from confronting.  


44 reads

The “Big 8” leadership capabilities

The “Big 8” leadership capabilities are

  • adaptability, 
  • strategic agility,
  • self-renewal, 
  • character,
  • empathy, 
  • communication,
  • collaboration and
  • developing other leaders


55 reads

Talent development is, arguably, the most vital of the Big 8 capabilities

Even though leaders should focus on leadership development at every stage of their careers, most businesses do not sufficiently prepare their top executives in the area of talent development. As a result, organizations lack a sufficient supply of leaders. 


46 reads

Organizations often invest more money in technical capabilities than in the resources needed to develop talent and lead people.

In the past, when researchers asked senior executives what they would have done differently in their careers, the answer often was that they would have sped up their strategies for initiating and implementing change. Now, they may say something similar, but they also might add that they would have acted sooner to strengthen their teams, to include the most talented people and to equip them to work together. Leaders want to make sure their teams and team members have the capabilities to achieve their goals.


38 reads



Industrial Mastery, Mentor, Light Worker, Nutritionist, Gymrat


The Big 8 Capabilities Setting Leaders Apart

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