Don’t Be Blind-Sided in a Crisis

If your company or community was facing a major crisis, who would you want to coach you through it? Someone with experience in dealing with crises of course. How about someone like Bruce Blythe?

Blythe and Crisis Management Institute offered onsite crisis consultations to more than 200 companies in the aftermath of the September 11 terrorist attacks, as well as for the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, Hurricanes Andrew and Katrina in 1992 and 2005, corporate and commercial air crashes, an Ecuadorian jungle rescue of kidnap and ransom hostages 2001,a Coca Cola truck/bus crash in Texas that killed 23 school children in 1989, earthquakes in Los Angeles and San Francisco, and multiple workplace shootings.

With that kind of experience, we just had to invite him to share with our subscribers how they can deal effectively with the crises that come up around them. Here is what Bruce promises to provide during our 60 minute webinar: A Manager’s Guide to Crisis Leadership.

• Crisis Response – Blythe places you in a simulation as an unprepared manager blindsided by an active shooter loose in your building.
• Crisis Preparedness – Blythe then guides you and your teams to analyze foreseeable risks, evaluate existing controls, add new ones, test and re-evaluate a realistic Plan.
• Crisis Leadership – Blythe cites examples/case studies to demonstrate what top-notch leaders would say and do during and after a disaster.
• Quick responses with detailed checklists for managing 9 major incidents.
• How to address victim’s families – dos and don’ts for communicating tragic news with empathy and dignity in person and through representatives.
• How to support employees in returning to work and productivity after a disaster or workplace violence.

So gather your team together on December 2nd at 12:00 pm ET and plan a discussion time after the webinar. Subscribers attend for free, but even if you pay the $49 registration fee that’s a great deal for your whole staff to get crisis management training. Bruce will also be taking time at the end of the session to answer your questions.

Book Review: Out Think

by G. Shawn Hunter

by G. Shawn Hunter

The keys to competitive advantage in leadership used to be etched in stone. A leader was expected to be relentlessly dedicated to a specialty and use intelligence and drive to separate a company from its competitors. Today’s leaders operate in a different environment. It’s one that requires a combination of flexibility and a willingness to work with others. In each chapter of Out Think, author and executive learning expert G. Shawn Hunter presents a key component and techniques to show how to implement ideas that drive the change leaders want in their organizations. This book is now available as a Soundview Executive Book Summary.

Hunter urges leaders to implement a new process that can accelerate new-product and value-creation pipelines. This is to counteract the “marketquake,” a term coined by Hunter to describe the volatile economic conditions of the current business climate. In Out ThinkHunter provides a number of key ideas, each of which is reinforced by takeaways drawn from the author’s access to top-level executives around the globe.

While subjects such as trust, exploration and collaboration are presented in new ways, executives may want to pay close attention to ideas that don’t normally receive as much coverage in business books. Hunter’s chapter on aspiration is one such example. By enabling team members to combine optimism with a well-articulated goal, Hunter provides leaders with the knowledge to turn their employees into company heroes.

Beyond learning why and how innovation has become the primary driver of successful companies, executives will also learn the key components of innovation and how to implement them in their organizations. With Out Think, any leader can make a measurable difference within their organization to outthink the competition.

Book Review: Thanks for the Feedback

by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen

by Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen

We receive feedback every day, but often times we resist or dismiss it. Using feedback is crucial for healthy relationships and professional development. In Thanks for the Feedback, Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen explain why getting feedback is important and offer a powerful framework for interpreting comments, annual evaluations, and unsolicited advice that will enable effective learning. This book is now available as a Soundview Executive Book Summary.

“Understanding our triggers and sorting out what set them off are the keys to managing our reactions and engaging in feedback conversations with skill,” write Stone and Heen. They identify three triggers that block learning and lead us to become confused or flustered. The first trigger is truth, which is set off by the substance of the feedback. Relationship triggers are the second trigger, which is tripped by the giver of the feedback leading us to switch our focus on the person delivering the message than the feedback. The third trigger is identity, which is when we feel overwhelmed or threatened because feedback has caused our identity to come undone. If you learn to overcome these triggers, you will be able to receive feedback well and use it constructively rather than discard it.

Beyond learning how to effectively receive and use feedback, you will learn how to dismantle distortions and draw boundaries in the face of unrelenting criticism. Furthermore, you will learn how to uncover blind spots so that you can continue to grow with valuable feedback. With Thanks for the Feedback, any professional can develop their career filled with valuable learning to progress to the next level.

How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action

START WITH WHY

THE QUESTION TO ASK
Inspiration comes in a variety of forms, but the root of it grows from a fundamental question asked by those who are able to inspire others. The most important question of all, according to leadership expert Simon Sinek, is: Why do we do what we do? Asking this question can mean the difference between a company that makes a profit over the short term and a company that creates long-term financial success. Asking “why” also helps us draw others to us because we all want to understand why things are the way they are.

In Start With Why, Sinek explains that those who remember to answer that question are better able to attract others to their cause and create the inspiration people need to stay loyal and committed. When organizations explore why they exist, they are more likely to inspire their employees to join in their efforts and better able to attract customers to their products.

‘The Golden Circle’
After examining the ways manipulative leaders motivate their people, such as playing the price game, selling through promotions, using fear tactics, playing on insecurities and applying peer pressure, Sinek describes a better path to inspiration: a leadership model he calls “The Golden Circle.”

The Golden Circle is a series of three concentric circles that starts with a circle in the middle that represents why. The next circle represents how, and the outside circle represents what. Sinek writes that every company knows what it does because what simply represents the product or service that the company sells or the job function an employee performs to sell that product or service. How explains how the company is different from other companies. But the why is the most important core that needs to be explored to find inspiration. Sinek explains that the most inspired companies and leaders think, act and communicate from the inside of the Golden Circle and work their way outward.

To describe how inspirational people and companies lead, Sinek holds up examples such as the Wright brothers, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and Apple Inc.
A prime example of an innovative company that inspires its employees and customers by starting with why is Apple. Sinek shows how the marketing message that Apple uses to create value begins with an explanation of the underlying differentiator that separates the company from its competitors. Sure, it makes computers, but that message comes after the company states that it believes in challenging the status quo and thinking differently.

Orville and Wilbur Wright
Similarly, Sinek writes, the Wright brothers were able to become the first people to pilot their own flying machine before experts with more resources at their disposal. The Wright brothers started with the passion for flight, which was a far more effective why than the mere ambition for achievement that compelled the Smithsonian’s Samuel Pierpont Langley and his shop of well-educated experts who also strove to be the first to fly. Other people joined Orville and Wilbur Wright’s team because they were inspired by their belief that people could fly. This belief helped the Wright brothers excite their team members to do the hard work that got them off the ground before anyone else in the world.

Stories like this demonstrate Sinek’s theory about the importance of inspiration when leading others. Through lively historical examples that captivate while inspiring, Sinek offers readers a wealth of role models to help them find the inspiration to reach their own goals.

Book Review: The Road to Reinvention

by Josh Linkner

by Josh Linkner

The most successful companies, brands, and individuals constantly are reinventing as a part of their business strategies. Organizations and people fail when they become stagnant in their prior success and do not evolve. In The Road to Reinvention, Josh Linkner offers managers the tools to reinvent your business or yourself continually that will become a competitive advantage in challenging times. This book is now available as a Soundview Executive Book Summary.

“Study any supremely successful organization or individual, from Nike to 3M or from Madonna to Tom Hanks, and you’ll encounter a consistent theme: an ethos of reinvention whose principles embody the disruptive mindset,” writes Linkner. He identifies eight principles of the reinvention ethos for creating deliberate, productive disruption. The first principle is letting go of the past and explains that if you become stale in your past success this will suppress your imagination, which is a recipe for disaster. The other seven principles are encourage courage, embrace failure, do the opposite, imagine the possibilities, put yourself out of business, reject limits, and aim beyond. If you practice these principles, you will develop a more innovative way of thinking which is necessary to lead change.

Beyond solid methods and systematic techniques, you will learn guiding principles for rejecting the status quo and repeatedly reinventing your organization and career for continued success. In addition, there are inspiring examples of reinvention by people who soared over their competition. With The Road to Reinvention, executives can secure a strong future for both your company and your career.