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Valedictory Speech 2014 for 13 year olds

I was asked to give a short speech at my daughter’s valedictory Leaver’s Dinner at the end of her Junior School year. Here is an edited version of what I said (I sprinkled this with some personal stories, humour and
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Navigating Complicated Conversations

Despite so much focus on mindfulness these days, there are many ways in which we struggle to apply it, most of all with how we communicate.  When I coach executives about self awareness I am struck by how difficult it
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Don’t write the U.S. off just yet – How the TIDES of Change model can help assess the future of the world’s largest economy

“Many business leaders will realise, soon, that they are underinvesting in North America” says Joel Kurtzman a leading figure in the U.S. on the future of business. Joel founded the Booz & Co magazine Strategy+Business and is also a senior
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #6

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #5

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #4

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #3

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:

Getting rid of email – here’s a company that’s done just that

Over the last few months I have begun to include a small section in some of my workshops on the clutter and “stuff” that makes work life a pain. Almost all participants identify meetings and email (and many add managers,
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #1

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:
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Six Things You Need To Know About Leadership Development Programmes #2

As TomorrowToday we have the privilege to both design and participate in Leadership Development Programmes (LDPs) throughout the world. We work internationally with some of fineness business schools and blue-chip multi-nationals in this arena. We have seen a great deal:
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On leadership: If I don’t see you again, have a good life

“If I don’t see you again, have a good life” was how a participant on global leadership programme  in Guangzhou ended a conversation with me as we parted. The comment immediately resonated especially as it had been said with a
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Leadership Reflection: Goodbye and Aloha

I am about to embark on another stint teaching in the East West Center’s renowned, Asia Pacific Leadership Program (APLP). This will be my 13th straight year teaching in APLP, a programme that is itself only 14 years old. There
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Seven insights to help you become a great leader

The contemporary challenges facing corporate leaders are well documented. The context for leadership is one filled with complexity, ambiguity, volatility and uncertainty. They are challenges that aren’t going to go away or change anytime soon and if leaders hope to

A leader’s most important job

Discovery leaders explore new ways. New business and markets are created because someone found a better way to do something. Discovery is an adventure. Imagination, design and creativity are the lexicons of discovery. It is fleet of foot, nimble and

On Leadership: The real innovation needed.

Innovation has been a business ‘buzz’ word for some time now and has, in and of itself, become ‘big business’. Everyone wants to be innovative; everyone wants to be associated with the perceived benefits of innovation; everyone knows that they
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Leader Fit

With all the demands that are placed on leaders in today’s World of Work, most are still struggling to cope with the complexity and change impacting their business, managing their own career and health as well as balancing their family

Millennials in the Workplace: an article on 60 Minutes

This 3 minute intro to a full 60 minute programme does a great job of identifying, and connecting with, some of the challenges that the Millennial generation bring into the workplace. They ARE different, and we will have to shift traditional
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Leading in a Changing World

Much of the work we do as TomorrowToday revolves around this particular theme: leading in a changing world. We help leaders both understand and respond to an exponentially changing world. Leadership is always context specific and this is why leaders
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The smart move is not to ignore China

I have the privilege to do repeated work in China. Frequent and regular trips have grown a respect, awe and amazement at what I see and encounter. My ‘Chinese experience’ and continuous education has fueled a deeper curiosity and appreciation
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Blackberry: Time of death…?

John Chen, the CEO brought in to arrest Blackberry slide into oblivion believes that Blackberry has turned the corner and can be saved. In an article by Nic Fildes in THE TIMES Business (6 August) Chen was quoted as telling
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Don’t trust Deutsche Bank…well when it comes to football at least!

Before the 2014 FIFA World Cup, analysts within Deutsche Bank developed a computer model to forecast the results.  The winners? Why, England of course. It should be pointed out that they were after all ‘foreign exchange analysts’ which might just

Leadership Magazine finds its inspiration from the TomorrowToday Message

In the July 2014 edition of Leadership, South Africa’s premier leadership magazine (it also happened to be their 350 publication – congratulations!) there appeared an article by Dr Rene Uys, titled ‘Connecting the Dots: the Connection Economy demands a paradigm
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Future Fit: 30 Leadership lessons for Adaptive Leaders

So, what kind of leader do you want to be – and what are you doing to ‘get there’? * Watch the first video of the series below if you want to jump in right away. These are important questions for
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Change is hard – I’ll be ready tomorrow

Having breakfast with a CEO recently and talking about organisational change, he came out with the memorable line, “change is hard – I’ll be ready tomorrow”. It wasn’t a personal reference but rather the unspoken response he seems to encounter
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The Mindfulness Circle

Conceptually understanding the Cycle of Self is key to maximizing our potential.  It explains our “why”. Why we believe what we believe, why we think what we think, and why we do what we do.  We can leverage Simon Sinek’s Golden Circle to help
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On Leadership: The not-so-simple matter of translation

Recently I had the privilege to attend a graduation ceremony. It was of course wonderful to see young people rewarded for years of hard work and was a forceful reminder of the importance of the academic contribution to our knowledge
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The Self Cycle

I like taking notice of the patterns of my thoughts.  It’s not coincidence that my thoughts draw me towards experiences that reflect my thoughts.  Which also means that what I think about , both consciously and subconsciously, shape my experiences.

[Video] Driving Change in Big Companies

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Leadership Lessons from the World Cup

The FIFA World Cup in Brazil, which began on 12th June 2014 and reaches its climax with the final being played on 13th July 2014, has enraptured much of the world, with breathtaking goals and exciting football. Are there leadership

[Video]: Keith Coats on leadership adaptability and resilience

Here is a recording from a presentation our resident leadership expert, Keith Coats, did on adaptive leadership, resilience and leadership development. It’s just an excerpt, so for the full context, we recommend reading details of The Connection Economy and Adaptive
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On Leadership: Failure Guaranteed – sometime, somewhere, somehow.

There is a remarkable cricket statistic than not many who love the game would believe or even dream possible. Yet it is. Amongst all who play the game internationally, having your name inscribed at Lords Cricket Ground, the home of
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Career Conversations

The world of work provides us with many choices. We can choose our employer and the duration that we want to work for that employer. We can choose to join the entrepreneurial trend and be our own boss. As flexible
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Reclaiming the Village: 4 Lessons from the San Bushmen

In his amazing book Future Primal, Louis Herman, a professor of political science at the University of Hawaii-West O’ahu, articulates how we should respond to our converging crisis of violent conflict, political corruption, and global ecological devastation. Herman’s sweeping synthesis
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China: “It’s not pretty but it’s the bloody reality”

I was listening to the head of a large multinational that have significant investments in China speak about the challenges and opportunities that is China. The one line that caught my attention? “It’s not pretty but it is the bloody
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On Leadership: The glory of uncertainty

Leaders have traditionally been conditioned to be certain. Conditioned to know the answer and instill confidence in leading the way forward. After all, isn’t that exactly what good leadership is all about? Not necessarily. The problem with certainty is that

The greatest challenge facing the future of business, requires your attention now.

Peter Menzel, is an award winning photographer, takes photographs of people posing next to their possessions taken out of their home and piled high on the pavements. The pictures paint a vividly clear picture – we live in a Material World,
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On Leadership: Chiefs as thin as the rest

The San Bushmen have no ‘Chiefs’. Every Bushman is considered “chief” over himself – or herself. This is strange for those accustomed to a society governed by hierarchy. In the unique Bushman societal structure there was a balance between communalism
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Meaning & Measurement: The M&Ms of leadership

There are two important aspects that all leaders cannot afford to ignore: meaning and measurement. Both are in dire need of being rethought given the context in which we find ourselves. Meaning is not derived from work. It can be
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Leadership: The Glory of Getting Stuck

Momentum is important. It is important in sport, it is important in life. We are always encouraged to keep moving and ‘moving forward’ is the marketing tagline for one of Africa’s most prominent banks. Making progress, constant motion, pushing on…the
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Followership: How to act the other 98% of the time, when we aren’t leading.

Companies and individuals around the world spend billions on courses, books, conferences, and symposiums to develop leadership skills. One thing every single person is though is a follower – everyone is responsible to someone else, or a group of others.
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The Enemy Within

The best of strategies can be thwarted and undone by the presence of an enemy within the ranks. Even worse, an enemy within can sow the seeds that result in destruction and ultimate annihilation. As a company, you may well
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Making Your Life Just a Little Easier (what we do at TomorrowToday)

“So, you’re like ‘Step Zero’ then, are you?”  We were doing some work a few years ago with the consulting arm of one of the Big Four accounting firms, and one of their team was trying to find a way
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Another leadership lesson from the kids: Change the conversation

Our youngest, Sipho must have been about four years old at the time. He was duly strapped into the car seat in the rear of the car as was the norm and was on yet another endless ride with Mom
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On Change: Blue cheese, tastier than ever!

In response to a client’s need to assist team leaders grasp and engage with some required internal change an old story was retold. The underpinning framework guiding the work that was done in Hong Kong and Singapore was that of
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Succession Planning: 5 lessons from a fallen giant

Something had to stop Manchester United from continuing their dominant ways and it came from what many thought would be the most likely direction: when it came time to change the leader (manager). We all knew that Sir Alex Ferguson
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Loyalty: Red and Blue on Merseyside and what we can learn about loyalty

As I write this I am sitting in quaint little coffee shop on Liverpool’s main street, one minutes walk from The Cavern where it all started for The Beatles. As I watch people walk by on what is a rare

Excuses for Complacency

It’s no secret that we at TomorrowToday are fans of Seth Godin, the author and business thinker. We often share his daily blogs internally and discuss them – they’re inspirational and insightful. Here’s one from a while ago that made

Three ways to deal with failure, by Seth Godin

Seth Godin is one of my favourite authors and business thinkers. I find his daily blog inspirational and insightful. Here’s one from a while ago that has really stuck with me. I think Seth is spot on with this insight,
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What Keith is currently reading

What Keith is  currently reading ‘Future Primal – how our wilderness origins show us the way forward’ by Louis G. Herman His thoughts on the book? A ‘game-changer’. I think this book will become one of the most significant books
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Leading in a Changing World: Four things leaders can learn from Postmodernism

If the world has changed then we need a new kind of leadership. The world has changed. Much has been said and written about change and the importance for leaders – wherever they might be, to adapt to the changes
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GROWTH Innovation: A practical framework for development

In TomorrowToday we believe from experience and observation of clients around the world, and through reading and tracking innovation trends, that there has been an evolution in Innovation practice just as there has been in most other areas of business.

It really IS about your people – now, more than ever!

People are your most important asset! You know this, because your company’s annual statements include this sentence every year. But do companies really believe this? They’d better. Most of the efficiencies your company is hoping to achieve in the next
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Horse Play – Learning about leadership

A repost, triggered by this article which appeared in the Skyway Magazine this month, of an article Keith Coats wrote a while back reflecting on our experiential leadership programme that we partner with Horse Play with in the Natal Midlands.
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Rewriting the Rules: understanding the era we’re living in

It’s easy to think that maybe all we need to do to survive this crazy world we live in is just grit our teeth a little bit longer and wait for sanity to return. The madness of the election cycle
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7 Things you need to know about being a boss

Keith recently wrote an article for HR Pulse where he shares with the readers 7 points that anyone assuming the new responsibility of ‘being the boss’ should be aware of. The following are the seven points he speaks to, and
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The ‘Tea Trap’: The correct way to make a cup of tea

Apparently, the ‘correct’ way to make a cup of tea is set out in a 5 000-word report by the British Standards Institution. Of course this is ludicrous for all those outside of Britain itself, where correct tea making, is
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How to change history

Gustavo Gutierrez once said, “Those who change the course of history are usually those who pose a new set of questions rather than those who offer solutions.” Gutierrez, born in Lima in 1928, is a Peruvian Dominican priest who is

People connect with a sense of purpose, says Markus Kramer

In this Video, TomorrowToday associate, international keynote speaker and ex-marketing director of Aston Martin, Markus talks about the importance of companies having a purpose that is appealling and relevant for their target market. Without an applicable purpose you can not
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Leadership: Five things you need to do?

Writing in USA Today journalists, Alistair Barr and Scott Martin, suggest five things that Microsoft’s new CEO, Satya Nadella, needs to do. This advice includes, embrace the cloud; free its software from Windows; fix mobile; woo developers and focus. It

Four lessons in leading people as a young entrepreneur

Three years ago I started DigitLab, and with it I began leading people. I wanted to lead a team instead of manage them.  I believe that people are at their best when they are happy, challenged, inspired and a part

The four horsemen of mediocrity, by Seth Godin

Seth Godin’s blog today is superb. He is identified four key reasons that employees are disengaged, that productivity is declining or stagnant, and that companies struggle to innovate and develop. The four horsemen of mediocrity by Seth Godin Deniability–“They decided,

[Video] Keith presenting TIDES of Change

We live in turbulent times – that much is obvious.  We are living at a moment in history when all the forces of change are combining to produce an era-changing period.  The political, corporate, social and personal rules for success
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Your next step: Thinking like a Futurist in 2014

It is that time of year again when everyone is having their say about the likely trends that will dominate or surface during the course of 2014. Recent editions of Time, Fortune and the Economist have all run lead articles

Understanding different generations and why this is important.

We are living in a world of paradox, and leaders need to start developing frameworks to deal with this paradox; frameworks of understanding. Generational Theory helps us understand the value systems of each generation. Values drive behaviour and understanding the
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Facts: Much to do about nothing – or quite the contrary?

  ‘Facts’ like statistics, can either be very insightful or actually prove to be somewhat unhelpful. Consider the following 10 facts:  88% of plane crashes occur in the first three minutes or the last eight minutes of a flight (reassuring

[Video] Adaptive Challenges: Knowing what to do when you don’t know what to do

A short video clip [1.13min] from some work that Keith recently did with one of our clients talking about Adaptive Leadership. Leaders need to know what to do when they don’t know what to do. Leaders need to be learners, and

The Year of the Employee: Forbes’ predictions for 2014 talent, leadership and HR tech

Ian Turner, one of Duke CE’s top MD’s and leadership development programme experts gets credit for finding this interesting article and sending it on to me. There are some fascinating thoughts in Deloittes’ predictions for 2014, published in Forbes, as

Booz & Co’s Strategy+Business Best Business Blogs of 2013

The editor of Booz & Co’s Strategic+Business magazine and blog site selected his favourite business blogs of 2013. I like this list a lot – there’s some really valuable articles here. It’s an eclectic list, but well worth taking some

Five New Year’s Resolutions Every Leader Should Make (HBR Blog)

As we head into a new year, an article on the Harvard Business Review blog network caught my eye. It went beyond those pithy list type emails and Facebook status updates you get at this time of year, with some

The Ideas that Shaped Management in 2013

As we get the new year rolling, my eye caught an HBR article that reviewed some of the fresh management thinking from 2013 that really made an impact around the world (and in the Harvard Business Revie, of course). There
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Seven ‘Leadership’ Lessons from Santa

Let’s face it, the fat guy in the red suit is one impressive leader. He never misses a beat, has expectations to meet that would cause even Zuma to step-down and he gets reindeer to fly. Which reminds me: do
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Looking out the window: Four leadership insights from 2013

Currently I am on my last business trip for 2013. Soon it will be time for a short break before the travel begins once more in early January with a trip to Ecuador. By the time this trip is complete

How to be a better leader – practical steps and exercises

Last month, our colleague in South Africa, Keith Coats, started a series of blog entries aimed at helping people become better leaders. He has labelled the series “how to be future fit” and is providing daily, practical tools and exercises
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You are mistaken Mr Friedman, there was a miracle.

It has been an interesting experience processing both the death and burial of Nelson Mandela from distant shores. Whilst I would have loved to have been home amongst ‘my people’ to fully enter into the emotion, celebration, mourning and expression

Humble Inquiry: The art of asking questions and why it’s a crucial leadership discipline

“If you leave today asking more questions than I give you answers, then I will consider today’s session a success” says Dr Graeme Codrington, TomorrowToday’s founding and international partner during his presentation on The TIDES of Change. An important leadership skill

How did things ever get so far?… It was so unfortunate, so unnecessary

This post is submitted by TomorrowToday associate Dil Sidhu, Chief External Officer at Manchester Business School These were the words spoken by the fictional crime family patriarch Don Corleone in the movie ‘The Godfather’ in reference to actions and counteractions
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TomorrowToday: Welcome to our world

Imagine a company with no written contracts between the business partners; no offices; no underpinning capital; as much – or little leave as you want; measured by outcomes; no HR policies or any policies really – just sensible agreements on
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TomorrowToday: Welcome to our world

Imagine a company with no written contracts between the business partners; no offices; no underpinning capital; as much – or little leave as you want; measured by outcomes; no HR policies or any policies really – just sensible agreements on
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Talent Management: It’s a three-door problem

The magazine ‘Parade’ had a column ‘Ask Marilyn’ by the person with the highest recorded IQ (according to the Guinness Book of Records), Marilyn vos Savant. In 1990 Craig Whitaker of Columbia wrote in with a question that is known
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Two important questions every leader should be asking.

Over the past month I have been writing a series on how to be a great leader – how to become an adaptive leader. In today’s context there is an urgent need to rethink the approach and practice of leadership.
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So you want to become a great leader?

Transforming a good leader into a great leader means becoming an adaptive leader. In facing the future, it is the major leadership challenge that you and your organisation will encounter. Good leaders are hard to come by. Growing good leaders

Seven steps to creating a Vibrant, Unreal, Crazy and Awesome world

The acronym VUCA comes from military vocabulary and stands for volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous situation. Originating in the late 1990’s the term has infiltrated corporate and government organisations used primarily to generate emerging ideas and solutions in strategic planning.

Film director Joss Whedon on strong female leads

Joss Whedon, according to his Wikipedia entry, is an American screenwriter, film and television producer, director, comic book author, composer, and actor. He is the founder of Mutant Enemy Productions and co-founder of Bellwether Pictures. He is best known as

Businesses that are building sustainable competitive advantage by doing good for society (Case Study)

In an earlier blog I spoke about the “perversions of the proper workings of capitalism”. In my mind Capitalism is inherently good. The Capitalist seeks to find and address a need. They innovate, take risks and work out how to

Competitive advantage in the Connection Economy [video]

With the emerging Connection economy, the rules across the board are changing. Nothing new in this as this has been a pattern that has imprinted all previous economic transitions from that of the ‘Hunter-Gatherer’ to the ‘Information era’. In this
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On Leadership: Riding Dead Horses

When you discover you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount. This ancient Sioux saying seems obvious enough; I mean who in their right mind would try to ride a dead horse, right? Well maybe not.

8 Blunders in How Leaders Think, by Mark Sanborn

A friend of mine, Mark Sanborn, is one of the world’s leading authorities on leadership, team building, customer service and change. I follow his work closely, and enjoy his writing and speaking. This past week, he put out a blog
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Memo to leaders: The 3 questions you really need to be able to answer

Of course there are lots of questions that leaders need to be able to answer and really smart leaders know that the essence of leading in today’s context is more about asking the right questions than feeling they always need

Where Senior Leaders Should Focus Their Attention

As a team, we are often privileged to be asked to sit through senior leadership meetings at our clients. Right up to Board level, these peepholes into our clients’ workings provide valuable insights into the operations of our clients, but
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Sleepwalking Through Leadership: Neglecting Story

Margaret Wheatley has said that leadership is the simple act of stepping forward. Leading in today’s volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world – or what is commonly referred to as ‘VUCA’ requires a leadership response unlike anything we have known
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The Leader’s Challenge: Knowing What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do

Author Max de Pree has said that the first task of leadership is to define reality.  For many in leadership today, the reality is they don’t know what to do in a turbulent, complex and dynamic world. Leadership is not
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African Leadership for Africa’s Future in a Globalised World

For Africa to be successful it needs to find models, methods and approaches that are uniquely suited to the continent and its needs.  As one of the world’s best travelled speakers and researchers (he visited 26 countries just last year),
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On leadership: The secret that is hidden in plain sight

The capacity to lead depends on trust. As a leader keeping trust alive is your primary responsibility for without it, you cannot lead. Trust is the air in a healthy organisational culture; it is the very currency of leadership. This
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Curious about failure: 6 things leaders need to keep in mind

One of the smartest things you can do as a leader is to be curious about failure. Sounds like the entirely ‘wrong’ emphasis doesn’t it? But let me explain what I mean. In business today there is a lot of
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Tomorrow’s Leaders and what to do about it today!

In TomorrowToday we talk a great deal about the generations. Generational Theory is a framework we have shared in some 44 countries and I don’t think there can be any consultancy that can claim that kind of global footprint when
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Miss America: Throwing down the gauntlet to leaders

The storm of abuse over the selection of Nina Davuluri as Miss America shows just how short America is in being the society and country Martin Luther King dreamt of all those years ago. The virile stirred up by Miss
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How you see the cow might just determine your future!

There are three company directors on a train going to Scotland. One of them heads-up marketing, one is in Human Resources and the other is the Financial Director. Out the window they see a field in which there is a
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The Enneagram, A Tool For Self- Observation

The French philosopher, Marcel Proust, said that the true journey of discovery does not consist of searching for new landscapes, but in having new eyes I loved that quote and agree with him. We have all heard that saying when

The ART versus the SCIENCE of business.

Earlier this year I was privileged to hear Seth Godin speak in London. The talk was part of his new book promotional tour The Icarus Deception. In the book and during the talk Seth asked the question  “how high are you prepared

7 Terrible Management Fads That Just Won’t Die – from Inc.com

A few months ago, I read the Inc.com blog post on “7 Terrible Management Fads That Just Won’t Die”. I have spent some time thinking about it, and wanting to engage with it. It’s a provocative read, and challenges some
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On Leadership: Difference matters

Recently Martin Luther King’s ‘I have a dream’ speech has celebrated its 50th anniversary. In the speech King found a way to further unlock America’s founding promise that, “All men are created equal” and have the right to “life, liberty
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Leadership: Yada, yada, yada…

Recently I had the misfortune to be trapped in a room in which an executive was enthusiastically ‘rallying the troops’. I am sure he thought that he was doing a good job and that those present were being suitably inspired

Signpost Video: Executive Education and meddling clients

Today’s HR and L&D professionals are under immense pressure to deliver real return on investment to their businesses from executive education. But some of the ways they’re trying to do this are counterproductive. We know of many companies who have
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7 Stats that change everything: What to be thinking about as a Leader.

Benjamin Disraeli once said, “There are three types of lies – lies, damn lies, and statistics”. Of course we know that statistics can be used to support multiple sides of an argument and as Mark Twain once observed, “Facts are
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On leadership: Your next 10 moves, think carefully!

What is your ‘next move’ as a leader? Well, of course that would depend exactly on what it is we are talking about, but here would be a variety of topics – and some suggestions as to your ‘next move’.

Dear CEO, You have to be in it to win it (I’m talking social media, you dinosaur)

You’ll lose 100% of the shots you don’t take. You’ll find this pithy advice in almost every motivational book. But being a cliche doesn’t mean it isn’t true. You have to be in it to win it. In the business
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The Future is leaving: how not to get left behind

By 2014, the percentage of companies that generate at least 30% of global revenue from emerging markets will increase by 82%.  The key to that statement is, ‘from emerging markets’. The global economic epicentre is shifting and the future looks

Mirrors, cameras, social media and cultural evolution – Seth Godin

Earlier today, Seth Godin posted an interesting piece on his blog about mirrors, cameras and cultural evolution. Read it at his blog or below. He points out that a few centuries ago nobody would have known what their “true” reflection
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Bag Tossing, Rules and Leadership: A point worth consideration.

Stefan Kraemer is a happy and proud athlete. His throw of 24.21m was enough to see him win the gold in the World Cup in Bottrop, Germany. Right now you are desperately trawling your memory bank trying to locate ‘Stefan
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Good news for animals…and vegetarians: but what about leadership?

In London scientists recently (5 August) unveiled the first purely lab-grown beef burger and tested it on a select group of tasters (sounds like a good job to have…for the most part at least!). It is seen as the end

Video: Four levels of institutional change

A brief overview of our team’s view of Institutional Change, one part of our TIDES model of the five disruptive forces shaping our world right now:   This video of Graeme Codrington was recorded by our good friends at Your
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The Most Profound Tool For Growing Your Human Capital

Most businesses, organizations and institutions today recognize that necessity and benefit of harnessing their human capital. Due to the fact that the world has changed so much and because we are in a constant state of change, managers have to
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The twin challenge that could sink your boat

In TomorrowToday we have had the privilege to have been involved with several profession service firms internationally – both in the accounting and legal spheres. Such institutions are always quick to inform you that they are different – different from
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The Ashes debacle: Maybe Australia should have done their homework!

Australian cricket is in crisis and it is a situation that gift-wraps several important lessons for any executive team. Of course we are aware of the ‘homeworkgate’ episode with former coach, Mickey Arthur. Against the backdrop of poor results, Arthur
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The Missing Soul of Leadership: Our Story

“Instead of telling our valuable stories, we seek safety in abstractions, speaking to each other aboutour opinions, ideas, and beliefs rather than about our lives” wrote Parker Palmer. He went on to say that,  “academic culture blesses this practice by
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Why Leadership Development needs to grow a pair!

Developing leaders is big business. Developing leaders has become a victim of its own success in that there is little willingness to change the model that for years has delivered the success. This is incongruent with the message that business
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Will you still have a job in 2025? The alarming rate at which jobs are being disrupted

A recent MIT Technology Review reveals an alarming trend. Since the early 2000’s and increasingly since the financial crisis of 2008, the levels of employment have decreased even though productivity has increased over the same period. Erik Brynjolfsson And Andrew
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The Future is China; The Future is Now.

China is like a large building site. Well in truth, China is a large building site. Any visit to a Chinese city (and sometimes not even a city) there is evidence of building activity. From my hotel window in Guangzhou

What is a Disruptive Force?

A disruptive forces is not a force that results in incremental changes, improving products or services one step at a time. Rather disruptive forces result in a breakthrough or a step change that transforms society forever.  Sometimes the disruption is
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Leading Teams: Two further considerations

“A team effort is a lot of people doing what I say” seems to be the approach of many a leader. Of course we all know that this is not how it should be but unfortunately, is often how it
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War: The Ultimate Disruptive Force

Unless you have been locked in a cupboard it has been very hard to not be aware that the 69th anniversary of the Normandy Invasion of German occupied France on 6th June 1944 has recently passed us. Next year will probably
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Making sense of sense-making

At TomorrowToday South Africa’s recent showcase in Sandton, our team asked the 60 or so business leaders who attended what their biggest organisational needs were right now. Nearly one third rated “understanding changing business contexts” as their most important business
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The Neglected Work of Leadership

The practice of leadership has many important facets and nuances. Strategic formation and implementation is often regarded as the ‘most important of all leadership responsibilities’ and it certainly is important. Strategy almost always forms a core part of the curriculum
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Leadership: Hearing the Music

I remember reading a story about Mark Twain in Leonard Sweet’s excellent book, Summoned to Lead. The story goes that Twain had a bad habit of swearing, a habit that offended his wife’s sensibilities.  Having failed on numerous occasions to
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Is it evil to avoid tax?

Google famously has the slogan “don’t be evil”. They are however embroiled in a worldwide issue – is tax avoidance evil? Not only have Google been dragged into the fray,  but Apple, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft, Starbucks and even famous individuals
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Leadership: The Right Trap

There is a trap that leaders should work to avoid. Yet ironically, it is a trap that ensnares many a leader and one that they enter into willingly. It is the trap of being right. Being right? Isn’t that what
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Leadership: The Right Trap

There is a trap that leaders should work to avoid. Yet ironically, it is a trap that ensnares many a leader and one that they enter into willingly. It is the trap of being right. Being right? Isn’t that what
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It makes no sense but what to do about it?

In one of the many Leadership Development Programmes (LDP) in which I have the privilege to be involved, it is a requirement that I set the participants an assignment. No problem there as it is what would be expected. However,
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It makes no sense but what to do about it?

In one of the many Leadership Development Programmes (LDP) in which I have the privilege to be involved, it is a requirement that I set the participants an assignment. No problem there as it is what would be expected. However,

Adaptive Leadership versus Authoritative Expertise

Leadership always occurs within a context. The type of leadership required – the leader that will be most successful – is that which best reflects the context within which it operates. If the world around us – including the global
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Cut the crap and fine your Consultants.

My daughter has two Masters degrees, with her most recent one being achieved cum laude. Enough said. Parental squabbles persist as to the origins of such smarts. With these qualifications she is well down the pathway to being an academic
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Why Sir Alex Ferguson Was Such A Successful Manager

Whether or not you are a Manchester United fan, it would be difficult to argue with the fact that as a business this football club has been massively successful, to say nothing of their success as a sports team. In
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The Fergie Factor: A Disruptive Force

After 26 years in charge of Manchester United Alex Ferguson has finally decided to take life a little easier by moving to a new role as a Director and Ambassador for the club. At 71 years of age he wants
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Why Sir Alex Ferguson Was Such A Successful Manager

Whether or not you are a Manchester United fan, it would be difficult to argue with the fact that as a business this football club has been massively successful, to say nothing of their success as a sports team. In
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Generation Jobless: A warning to us all

The April 27th Economist ran a cover story about the ‘generation jobless’ – the global rise of youth unemployment. It is a serious concern for a number of reasons and one that could have long-lasting implications for both the global
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Building innovative companies using the powerful disruptive force of the Connected Generation (Part 1)

Competitive dynamics are shifting and the rules for success and failure are being rewritten across almost every industry and every business function. Exciting new innovative business models are emerging every day and you don’t have to be a fresh upstart
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Blogging the ‘Not So Smart’ Way by Jeff Bullas

I was really looking forward to reading Jeff Bullas’s ‘Blogging the Smart Way’ that I had downloaded. I was sure that there would be some worthwhile insights and some fresh lessons to be learnt. He did a pretty convincing job
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Toxic Leadership: Recognising the signs

Toxic leadership always ends badly but it doesn’t start that way. Toxic leadership (as is the case with any from of leadership) requires followership and to assume that at the outset the followership knew what they were in for is
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Toxic Leadership: Recognising the signs.

Toxic leadership always ends badly but it doesn’t start that way. Toxic leadership (as is the case with any from of leadership) requires followership and to assume that at the outset the followership knew what they were in for is

10 Leadership Lessons for building a Quest from Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn

Jeff Weiner, CEO of LinkedIn is on a quest to create economic opportunity for the 3.3 billion people in the global workplace by matching skills with job opportunities. This is a bold and audacious quest and quests are a key element

Lean Back – 6 Post Macho Management principles

Several years ago the nature of management’s future was driven home to me in a flash, as I shared the stage with my co-author and business partner Dr. Martha Rogers. It was the heyday of the dot-com boom, and we
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One Day Without Shoes

Tuesday 16 April is the TOMS ‘one day without shoes’. TOMS, founded in 2006 by Blake Mycoskie in Santa Monica, California is a shoe company with a difference. The company designs and sells shoes based on the Argentine ‘alpargata’ design
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The Passing of an Icon

Whether you liked, loathed or are somewhere in the middle it cannot be denied that Baroness Margaret Thatcher will be known as a major figure in British history. The Britain that she took control over in 1979 was very different
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Why current leadership development programmes are bound to fail

Leadership development programmes have become big business. Business Schools all around the globe serve as the default setting as to where to go when you want such a programme. However, There are early signs that this might not always be

Podcast: The Customer Experience Show – Secrets of Successful Multi-Generational Work Cultures

Dean and myself were interviewed by Michelle Romanica on the Customer Experience Show on Blogtalk Radio. It was a great show, with some fascinating insights into multi-generational workplaces. The blurb of the show says: In their work, Graeme Codrington and

Podcast: The Customer Experience Show – Secrets of Successful Multi-Generational Work Cultures

Dean and myself were interviewed by Michelle Romanica on the Customer Experience Show on Blogtalk Radio. It was a great show, with some fascinating insights into multi-generational workplaces. The blurb of the show says: In their work, Graeme Codrington and

Video: Fujitsu’s 21st Century Leadership series

Recently, I spoke at an evening function hosted by Fujitsu in London. The theme was: “Who’s in charge? Leadership in the 21st century workplace”. Liv Garfield, CEO of BT Openreach, and myself shared the platform and a panel discussion, and

Having FUN, the greatest force of disruption

How many people do you know, were caught out by April fool jokes this year? Seth Godin played one of the best practical jokes when he blogged that Amazon was launching Kindle Zero a free tablet for all Prime members.

Where to find success now

Seth Godin is one of our favourite thinkers and writers. We share many of his worldviews, especially that we are living in a period of transition from the end of the industrial age to the emergence of a connection economy.

Where to find success now

Seth Godin is one of our favourite thinkers and writers. We share many of his worldviews, especially that we are living in a period of transition from the end of the industrial age to the emergence of a connection economy.
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Life and Perspective: A Letter to Rebecca

This was a letter penned some seven years ago on the arrival of  a very special little girl to a very special family – that of my colleague and friend, Graeme. I ‘publish’ it with their permission as I think

I want you in my office. Now. What’s really going on at Yahoo?

The biggest tech news so far this year has been an announcement by Yahoo that they want “all hands on deck” and that all work-from-home is being cancelled as from June. Irked Yahoo employees have leaked the memo that was
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A Leadership lesson from Australian cricket: Do your homework

There have been all sorts of comments around the debacle that is Australian cricket at present. In short we are talking about a cricket nation, for so long accustomed to looking down on all others playing the game, now firmly

The power behind disruptive business models

It’s not technologies that disrupt, rather it is the business model that the technology enables that creates the disruptive impact. Digital music had been around as a technology before Steve Jobs and Apple leveraged it to create a new business model that completely disrupted
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Smart leadership: The Power of Questions – A (Japanese) Story.

“You can eat an apple,” I said, and gave him the green fruit. It was as if he had seen an apple for the first time. First he just held it there and smelled it, but then he took a
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Leading Diversity: three simple things you can do

Leading and managing diversity is not optional for the contemporary leader. It is also not as easily done as it is stated! Of course ‘diversity’ is as complex as it is nuanced and much has been said and written on
Leading-Diversity

Leading Diversity: three simple things you can do

Leading and managing diversity is not optional for the contemporary leader. It is also not as easily done as it is stated! Of course ‘diversity’ is as complex as it is nuanced and much has been said and written on
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From Dust to Dust: Making Conferences Count

This has been a subject that I have wanted to write about for some considerable time. Somehow though, I have been procrastinating as it seems, well… so mundane. I mean let’s face it, an article about the role and execution
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Best beats good every time – something smart leaders know.

Although individuals in leadership, those at the top of an organisation, might discover what is good for an organisation, contrary to centuries of perceived wisdom they will never discover what is best. The reason is simple. It is because, as
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Competitive Advantage: What matters most today and how we got here

The Connection Economy – Competitive Advantage:  What matters most today and how we got here By Keith Coats, TomorrowToday International Partner Competitive advantage has always existed and understanding the evolution of what constitutes competitive advantage in today’s context, is important
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Charred Lullaby: A Lesson in Leadership

I want to share a hauntingly beautiful story with you. The source is E. Valentine Daniel, and is titled, Charred Lullaby. As you read it, contemplate what you understand and know about authentic leadership. The powerful story will doubtlessly invite
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Three Things Leaders Can Do To Maintain Their Balance.

The captivating picture is of Licia Ronzulli and her seven-week-old daughter, Victoria. Periodically Licia would bend forward and gently kiss her sleeping daughter. It was an image that captured the media’s attention and was published worldwide. It was taken in
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Improvising the revolution: Fail to win, like Steve Jobs

The Apple Lisa. The Newton. Macintosh TV. The Apple III. The Powermac G4 Cube. Steve Jobs had a brilliant understanding of how technology trends were developing, yet even he messed up fairly regularly and spectacularly (although he got better with

Improvising the revolution: Fail to win, like Steve Jobs

The Apple Lisa. The Newton. Macintosh TV. The Apple III. The Powermac G4 Cube. Steve Jobs had a brilliant understanding of how technology trends were developing, yet even he messed up fairly regularly and spectacularly (although he got better with
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Practical ‘weapons’ in the war against flat-earth thinking

In my recent ezine article I wrote about how leaders needed to avoid the trap of ‘flat-earth thinking’. I suggested three things that could be employed in avoiding the trap, namely: Curiosity, courage and commitment. I went on to say

Are you a creator or a perfecter?

Seth Godin gets it spot on (as he normally does) with this insight from his blog last year. The question for you is simple: are you a creator, or are you in the business of perfecting what has been created?
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Are you a creator or a perfecter?

Seth Godin gets it spot on (as he normally does) with this insight from his blog last year. The question for you is simple: are you a creator, or are you in the business of perfecting what has been created?
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The Leader’s Magical Running Shoes

‘Man these shoes are fast…I can hardly keep up with them’ I thought as I tried out my new ultra light-weight Adidas running shoes for the first time. My legs were a blur as they pumped furiously just to keep
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Are You Rude?

“Rudeness at work is rampant, and it’s on the rise.”  And apparently 98% of people have reported experiencing rude behavior at work…. 50% said they encountered rudeness at least once a week. In an HBR article this month, The Price of

We’ve been suckered! “there is no real difference between work and play – it’s all living” says Richard Branson

Richard Branson recently said “there is no real difference between work and play – it’s all living” How profoundly true this statement is. I spent yesterday speaking at the  excellent Business Leaders Group and the concept of where we work and
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A Question to leaders: What do you love about leadership?

A somewhat unusual question I know but an important one nonetheless. Leadership comes with various pros and cons and the responsibilities associated with leadership can cast a long shadow and present a heavy load. Some talk about leadership as being
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China and Ethics Matter: Two Bottom Line lessons for Leaders Everywhere

Two headlines in the Business Report caught my eye this morning. The first had to do with China’s economic performance.  Later today I am flying to Guangzhou, China for a day’s work with London Business School on the Nestle Leadership

New ways of working – the revolution is still rumbling along

It was the early 1990s, and a new generation had started entering the world of work at just the time that personal computers were creating opportunities for significant change to the way the workplace functioned. Within just a few years,
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The Leadership Trap of Flat Earth Thinking

It was 16 February 1600 and a crowd had gathered to watch Italian friar, philosopher, mathematician and astronomer Giordano Bruno being burnt at the stake having been condemned as a heretic. To go against the ‘truth’ as the church defined
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China and Ethics Matter: Two Bottom Line lessons for Leaders Everywhere

Two headlines in the Business Report caught my eye this morning. The first had to do with China’s economic performance.  Later today I am flying to Guangzhou, China for a day’s work with London Business School on the Nestle Leadership

Seth Godin: With great power comes great irresponsibility

We are big fans of Seth Godin. Today, Seth posted this short, but hard hitting and spot on analysis on his website. We agree entirely. Organizations tend to view “responsiblity” as doing the safe, proven and traditional tasks, because to

Seth Godin: With great power comes great irresponsibility

Our team recently hosted some of UK clients at one of Seth Godin’s live events in London. We are big fans, and loved the evening. Today, Seth posted this short, but hard hitting and spot on analysis on his website.

Video: Disruptive changes in the travel industry

In October 2012, I spoke at the ACTE (Association of Corporate Travel Executives) Annual European Convention in Rome. The topic of my 45 minute keynote presentation was “Leading in a Changing World”, and I outlined three key reasons the world

Video: Disruptive changes in the travel industry

In October 2012, I spoke at the ACTE (Association of Corporate Travel Executives) Annual European Convention in Rome. The topic of my 45 minute keynote presentation was “Leading in a Changing World”, and I outlined three key reasons the world
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Leadership: What is your ‘flat-earth’ thinking?

I have always been interested in trying to understand our current context when viewed from a future perspective. Of course this is an impossible task until that is time travel makes it way into our reality! However in the same
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Leadership: What is your ‘flat-earth’ thinking?

I have always been interested in trying to understand our current context when viewed from a future perspective. Of course this is an impossible task until that is time travel makes it way into our reality! However in the same

Video: Five forces shaping the future of business

This is my book project for 2013: The TIDES of Change. This is a look at the five most important forces that are causing disruptive change in the world right now; and, of course, how we should respond as individuals,

Forti nihil difficilius – In 2013 nothing is too difficult for the brave

Forti nihil difficilius translates as “nothing is too difficult for the brave.” This is the motto of the high school I attended and as mottos go it is a pretty cool one. I’ve always liked it but I never imagined

Nine 2012 stories that will change the world in 2013

Yesterday, the Common Dreams blog ran an excellent piece by Sarah van Gelder on nine key trends that started last year and will continue to impact the world this year. Most of these are disruptive forces, and chime well with
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Leadership: The Obvious Question

I know that Christmas has come and gone and we are already rushing headlong into 2013 armed with untainted resolutions and expectations. Reality will meet us at some point but before this happens I do want to pose an important

Keys to creativity and successful organisational leadership in 2013

These are probably the two issues that will most affect your company’s value in the year ahead: creativity and leadership. You need to find where your company can grow, can improve and can enhance its value. And you need to

Keys to creativity and successful organisational leadership in 2013

These are probably the two issues that will most affect your company’s value in the year ahead: creativity and leadership. You need to find where your company can grow, can improve and can enhance its value. And you need to
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Three Things Good Leaders Should Be Asking Santa

This is a blog post written by KEITH COATS, International Partner at TomorrowToday on the topic of LEADERSHIP in a changing world Of course only good leaders get to ask Santa for anything, bad leaders’ Christmas stocking is likely to be empty! So what

Your next CEO: insider or outsider? Filtered or not? (There is a right answer for you)

Ever since Jim Collins’ “Good to Great” came out a decade ago, it has been the received wisdom that the best CEOs are those that rise up through a corporation are better than outsiders who are parachuted in. But is
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Three Things Good Leaders Should Be Asking Santa

Of course only good leaders get to ask Santa for anything, bad leaders’ Christmas stocking is likely to be empty! So what would a good leader want from Santa for the journey marked 2013? The leadership context is one of
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Four Leadership Lessons from the Road Most Traveled

The curtain call on 2012 is almost due. It is the time to reflect on what has been and perhaps what might have been; it is the time to begin to contemplate what waits on the other side of 2012

Microsoft needs reinvention not improvement – and so do you

This past year saw Microsoft post it’s first ever quarterly loss. This was to do with a $6 billion write down of an investment, and wasn’t really a trading loss. But nevertheless it rang some alarm bells. In the digital

Microsoft needs reinvention not improvement – and so do you

This past year saw Microsoft post it’s first ever quarterly loss. This was to do with a $6 billion write down of an investment, and wasn’t really a trading loss. But nevertheless it rang some alarm bells. In the digital

VIDEO: Three new leadership skills

In this video, we outline a new ‘ABC’ of leadership: Adaptive Intelligence, a Balcony perspective and Conversations. These are three skills most leaders don’t have these days – and three skills they’d do well to cultivate.   For more on

VIDEO: Three new leadership skills

In this video, we outline a new ‘ABC’ of leadership: Adaptive Intelligence, a Balcony perspective and Conversations. These are three skills most leaders don’t have these days – and three skills they’d do well to cultivate.   For more on

Leading Diversity: the work leaders cannot ignore

One of the biggest challenges facing leaders today is that of leading diversity. It is also something that leaders cannot ignore, avoid or neglect – although many do. Diversity is a well-worn term and is often confused with variety. In
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Leading Diversity: the work leaders cannot ignore

One of the biggest challenges facing leaders today is that of leading diversity. It is also something that leaders cannot ignore, avoid or neglect – although many do. Diversity is a well-worn term and is often confused with variety. In
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Kittens, magnets and the power of teleworking

If we’d been working 100 years ago, most people would’ve worked on a farm or a mine; 50 years ago we would’ve been working in a factory, today most people in developed markets work in the knowledge economy and we

What is your industry’s iceberg?

There are numerous forces changing the shape and face of business today. We call the most important ones the TIDES of Change. TIDES is an acronym standing for Technology, Institutions, Demographics, Environment and Social values. Each forces has numerous, let’s

Lessons from the Titanic for future focused leaders

Have you ever wondered what you would do differently if you were a leader on the historic voyage of the Titanic?  A centaury later we are still gripped by the tragedy, the horrors and even the romance of the loss.
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Four Titles I wish were mine: and four leadership challenges they pose

What Got You Here, Won’t Get You There is the title of Marshall Goldsmith’s book that details behavioural changes needed to get the summit of business. Goldsmith is an Executive Coach who I met at the Global Leader’s Conference in
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Fly Emirates: How an Airline gets it right in all but one thing

November. Dubai. Emirates business lounge. ‘Home’. I do a lot of flying. It comes with the territory and let me say right upfront, travel is not as glamorous as it is sometimes made out to be! Any frequent flyer will
Emirates

Fly Emirates: How an Airline gets it right in all but one thing.

November. Dubai. Emirates business lounge. ‘Home’. I do a lot of flying. It comes with the territory and let me say right upfront, travel is not as glamorous as it is sometimes made out to be! Any frequent flyer will

A Trait of Smart Leaders: Seeing With Your Ears – Listening With Your Eyes

How do submarines ‘see’? Well, everyone knows that submarines ‘see’ by using ultrasound…essentially submarines see by hearing, by using their ‘ears’. So should leaders. Social intuition is the term used to describe the ability to spot and read clues around
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A Trait of Smart Leaders: Seeing With Your Ears – Listening With Your Eyes

How do submarines ‘see’? Well, everyone knows that submarines ‘see’ by using ultrasound…essentially submarines see by hearing, by using their ‘ears’. So should leaders. Social intuition is the term used to describe the ability to spot and read clues around

Video: Big data, infographics and the role of IT in a new world of work

I spoke at a conference for the German company, Haniel earlier this year. The audience was largely German and engineers, so I toned down my normal style (a bit of energy, a bit of humour) to suit them, but the

The Third Wave of the Digital Age

Last Saturday, I spoke at a TEDx conference in London.  The talk I initially scripted would have taken longer than half an hour – not quite TED style!  The talk I planned to give would actually have taken about 19
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The Third Wave of the Digital Age

Last Saturday, I spoke at a TEDx conference in London.  The talk I initially scripted would have taken longer than half an hour – not quite TED style!  The talk I planned to give would actually have taken about 19
Militery-Leadership

Leaders…attention! A vital lesson for all leaders from an unlikely source: the military.

“I might take a bullet to my head and so whoever takes my place needs to be better than me. I train and mentor others to be better than I am”. So said the Lt Colonel with whom I happened
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Leadership Self-Awareness

I have yet to meet a leader that can effectively solve problems or conflict by way of assertion. In fact, assertion as a means to resolution is highly toxic to your organizational culture.  Assertion is like holding a beach ball

Seven big questions and seven big problems business leaders need to address

  Extensive research from TomorrowToday’s Strategic Insights Unit is revealing what makes companies successful in the new world of work. Our latest study illustrates seven big problems, seven big questions and seven big answers to enable leaders to build agile

Women need more than words (and binders) to succeed at work

For women to bridge the pay gap in the workplace and to find their way into boardrooms and senior leadership positions they’re going to need men’s assistance. This is not to patronise women, but simply a statement of the reality

TEDx talk on the Future of Work: your help requested

Next Saturday, 27 October 2012, I will be speaking at a TEDx event in London: TEDxSquareMile, The Future of Work: Power to Make a Difference. Please would you help me with three things. Firstly, if you can attend or know

The Goldilocks Principle: On Learning Leadership

Some years ago I asked a friend who was responsible for some of the most successful TV adverts in South Africa – she was the advertising agency’s account manager for a fast food brand – what made the adverts so
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Neglected but Essential: The Work All Leaders Need To Do

Thinking about today’s brand of leadership it seems to me that the shear pace and complexity that leaders encounter on a daily basis has all but eroded one of the fundamental leadership disciplines. I am referring here to the discipline
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The Goldilocks Principle: On Learning Leadership

Some years ago I asked a friend who was responsible for some of the most successful TV adverts in South Africa – she was the advertising agency’s account manager for a fast food brand – what made the adverts so

Fit bodies, fat minds: The need to read

Leaders read. Learning organisations have institutionalized a reading habit – it has become an essential part of their DNA and not to read, is not to fit with the organizational culture. Executives across the board have become lazy when it
Reading

Fit bodies, fat minds: The need to read

Leaders read. Learning organisations have institutionalized a reading habit.  It has become an essential part of their DNA and not to read, is not to fit with the organizational culture. Executives across the board have become lazy when it comes

Profound Leadership Thoughts – The meaning of “Meaning”

This blog was first published on our sister company’s blog and written by TomorrowToday International Partner Keith Coats. The thoughts are very powerful please enjoy reading them and take time to think and reflect on the meaning they have for you.
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Musings of a Time Traveller

Well to be honest, I’m not really a ‘time traveller’. However, if flying North, then over the top of the earth (in a North-East kind of direction I guess?), then South and finally West for 30 hours, plus 9 hours
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Meaning: Your Responsibility!

During a recent conversation with my colleague, Dean, a conversation had whilst driving through the beautiful Ascot in England, a thought was expressed to which Dean responded, “Keith, you really need to blog that thought”. This then is the blog

Humility in Leadership

Think Big, Act Small by Jason Jennings is a worthwhile read (Kindle edition here). He looks into what has made best performing companies (in the USA) sustain their ‘start-up spirit’. In the book Jennings offers some arresting insights based on
Humility

Humility in Leadership

Think Big, Act Small by Jason Jennings is a worthwhile read. He looks into what has made best performing companies (in the USA) sustain their ‘start-up spirit’. In the book Jennings offers some arresting insights based on solid research done

Dipping my toe, with 50 days to go: Romney’s lost his way

Updated on 24 October 2012 – see below I love to follow politics. In countries around the world it tells us so many different things about the health of a country, the culture of that country and the future of
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A question to leaders everywhere: What questions are you asking?

Most people collect something or other. For some it is stamps, for others it might be model cars or antiques or things that have little significance beyond the passion of the collector. I too have a collection, albeit an unusual

A question to leaders everywhere: What questions are you asking?

Most people collect something or other. For some it is stamps, for others it might be model cars or antiques or things that have little significance beyond the passion of the collector. I too have a collection, albeit an unusual

Leaders: Can you say this about your brand?

Recently I was sitting in an Executive meeting in which conversation was centred on rethinking the company’s vision and brand. To be honest what should have been an engaging, energetic conversation was rather like pulling hen’s teeth. There wasn’t much
Brand

Leaders: Can you say this about your brand?

Recently I was sitting in an Executive meeting in which conversation was centred on rethinking the company’s vision and brand. To be honest what should have been an engaging, energetic conversation was rather like pulling hen’s teeth. There wasn’t much
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Strategic Insights: How Kraft delivered performance and profit improvements by offering teams blank cheques

In 1960, during a Mercury space flight, John Glenn used the powdered breakfast drink Tang. Not surprisingly, as the general public became aware of NASA’s endorsement of Tang, sales skyrocketed. In recent years, however, sales – especially globally – had been sluggish.

TomorrowToday TV: Vidcasts on future trends and disruptive change

In addition to our new Internet TV channel, powered by YourBusinessChannel, the TomorrowToday team continues to develop video-based resources. We’re committed to bringing you strategic insights that stimulate thought and conversation. Here are some of our most recent contributions: Dr
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From Russia with Love: Pilgrim or Tourist?

This week I will be in Moscow doing a day on ‘Leading Diversity’ as part of a leadership programme for Boehringer Ingelheim- one of the top twenty international pharmaceutical companies. I have been fortunate enough to have been to Russia
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On Leadership: Regretfully…

We all live with a few regrets, or so a survey that I read the other day would have us believe. But I think it would be true that there can be very few people who, in all honesty can

11 Things Smart Leaders Know, Do and Live

Charlie Parker, a genius when it comes to the saxophone, once said, “Jazz comes from who you are, where you’ve been, what you’ve done. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out your horn.” Charlie was spot-on – at least
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11 Things Smart Leaders Know, Do and Live

Charlie Parker, a genius when it comes to the saxophone once said, “Jazz comes from who you are, where you’ve been, what you’ve done. If you don’t live it, it won’t come out your horn.” Charlie was spot-on: at least

Future-proof your Organisation: 4 things leaders need to know about tomorrow

“Change is the law of life.” So said John F Kennedy.  He also said, “those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.” The ability to change – or what can be referred to
Future-proof

Future-proof your Organisation: 4 things leaders need to know about tomorrow

“Change is the law of life” – so said John F Kennedy and, “those who look only to the past or present are certain to miss the future.”  The ability to change – or what can be referred to as

The Best Way to Develop Leaders Yet!

“I have done all the tests,” he said to me, “and the Enneagram is by far the best I have ever done. It really has made a difference in my life. Would you please come and do it for my

Who owns that dumb corporate rule? No! Really? Why? Who made this rule up?

One blog from Seth Godin stands out for me as being a diamond amongst gems. It was written in 2009 and in it he asks the question: who owns that rule? Seth says: “Every  rule needs to be associated with
Enneagram1

The Best Way to Develop Leaders Yet!

“I have done all the tests,” he said to me, “and the Enneagram is by far the best I have ever done. It really has made a difference in my life. Would you please come and do it for my
Innovation1

Seeing Beneath the Surface: Innovation and Leadership

These days there is a lot said and written about the need to innovate. Companies are encouraged to innovate and the topic is now a natural part of most MBA’s and leadership education programmes – something that is slightly ironic
Hypatia-1

Seeing Beneath the Surface: Innovation and Leadership

These days there is a lot said and written about the need to innovate. Companies are encouraged to innovate and the topic is now a natural part of most MBA’s and leadership education programmes. Something that is slightly ironic as
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What you can tell about the ‘smell of a place’ by sitting in the reception!

An 8am meeting with the head of learning and development at Zurich Insurance in downtown Johannesburg taught me more about the company than any Google search could have revealed. I say ‘could have’ because I had forgotten to bring my

Graeme Codrington public events in South Africa in August 2012

Dr Graeme Codrington will be speaking at the following public events in South Africa in August. Sign up now for any or all of them. Discounts for groups are available: 17 Aug in Cape Town: Succeeding in a new world
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Those who think they have power tend to abuse that power

This thought could probably apply to many different people in many different parts of society, but right now my brain is fixated on the nauseating stench coming from the banking industry. From Barclays colluding with central banking authorities to manipulate
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The gift that wasn’t: Leading by doing nothing

It was the kind of gift any twelve-year-old dreams about. In fact Michael had dreamt about it for some time in anticipation of his forthcoming birthday. Michael is the son of good friends and not from our cave, just in
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Barclays and ABSA get the lesson: ‘culture matters most’.

Under the title, ‘Ramos fights on all fronts’ (Business Times 15/7/12), ABSA Chief Executive, Maria Ramos, tells parent bank Barclays of the concerns she has about their banking culture. She has every right to be concerned. When Barclays bought a
The-Futurist

The future isn’t what it used to be: Neither at work nor it seems, at home!

In the July-August issue of The Futurist (www.wfs.org) there was an interesting article on the shift from ‘smart houses’ to ‘networked houses’. Authors Chris Carbone and Kristin Nauth describe how tomorrow’s integrated, networked and aware home systems will forever change

Your Real Work as a Leader: A sense of vocation

“I love what I do!” I have come to realize that there are a lot of people who cannot say that- folk for whom their working life is something to get done so that they can carry on with what
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Your Real Work as a Leader: A sense of vocation

“I love what I do!” I have come to realize that there are a lot of people who cannot say that- folk for whom their working life is something to get done so that they can carry on with what

Disruptive Change – How to deal with it for future success [podcast]

Last Friday I was interviewed by Chris Cooper on his Voice America Business radio show. The show is now available in podcast format, for free. It’s an hour long, and a great conversation about how we deal with disruptive change

Banksters – the most recent crisis explained simply by The Economist

I’m a subscriber to The Economist. This week I am absolutely loving their cover on the banking crisis: “Banksters” is the one word title, with a wonderful image. This week has definitely been a bad one for banks, and Bob

Banksters – the most recent crisis explained simply by The Economist

I’m a subscriber to The Economist. This week I am absolutely loving their cover on the banking crisis: “Banksters” is the one word title, with a wonderful image. This week has definitely been a bad one for banks, and Bob

Management Today: Fortune-telling for business

Management Today, one of the top management publications in the UK, has picked up on some of our ideas about how you can get your teams to work differently and see into the future. Our head of Strategic Insights, Catherine

Management Today: Fortune-telling for business

Management Today, one of the top management publications in the UK, has picked up on some of our ideas about how you can get your teams to work differently and see into the future. Our head of Strategic Insights, Catherine

The Leader’s Role: To bring the future to life

I am often asked what it is TomorrowToday does. Some find the name intriguing or my title amusing (Director of Storytelling). “So what exactly does TomorrowToday do?” I am asked. My stock answer is, “we bring the future to life”.
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The Leaders Role: To bring the future to life.

I am often asked what it is TomorrowToday does. Some find the name intriguing or my title amusing (Director of Storytelling). “So what exactly does TomorrowToday do?” I am asked. My stock answer is, “we bring the future to life”.

Building successful teams is hard work

Everyone has their favourite Olympic event. For many it’s the 100m sprint as the fastest men on earth hurtle down that tiny corridor to victory and fame. But for me, amidst all of the individual events that characterise the Olympics,
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Background Music: Essential for authentic leadership?

A mentor of mine recommended a book for me to read by James Kugel titled, In the Valley of the Shadow. Seven years ago, Kugel, a retired Harvard professor of Hebrew literature, was diagnosed with an aggressive, likely fatal form
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Leadership is a Conversation, at Least it Should be!

Traditional corporate communication needs an overhaul.  It needs to become less about corporate tone and messaging and more about dynamic and engaging communications.  More over it needs to be conversational.  I got goose bumps as I read Leadership Is a
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An Open Letter to TomorrowToday: A reminder from Starbucks for all of us!

I am reading Howard Schultz’s Onwards.  Schultz is the founder of Starbucks and Onwards is the story of Starbucks post 2007. I loved Starbucks right from the time I first had a ‘Starbucks experience’ and that was deepened with the
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Living Up To Expectations: Understanding Generational Expectations in the Workplace

Not only are expectations subject to personal nuances, they can be further understood by looking at broad generational values that underpin behaviour. Generational Theory as originally promoted by Howe and Strauss, two Yale and Harvard trained political economists, suggests that
leadership

Tomorrow’s Leaders have to be better than today ‘s leaders

The occasion was the launch of a senior leadership development Programme with an International blue chip company. The CEO made the customary welcoming speech at the opening evening in which he made the attention grabbing statement: “Tomorrow’s leaders will have
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False Truth Hunting

As a change agent I have come to believe that the most formidable inhibitors to change are our false truths.  Each and everyone one of us have false truths that can sabotage our potential.  And our false truths are widespread

Not seeing what you’re looking at

There are many examples online where you can be looking at something and not see what’s happening right in front of your eyes. The most famous, possibly is the black gorilla and basketball count test. Probably my favourite is the
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A Leadership Pill

I recently watched the movie ‘Limitless’ which explores the concept of a pill that leads to acutely enhanced awareness and performance. Obscure facts tucked away in the recesses of one’s subconscious become accessible; patterns hidden by details become clear and
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The Rocket Science of leadership: Dear Keegan, as you leave

I wrote a letter and slipped it into Keegan’s luggage before he set out on his overseas adventure that would last a year (at least) having finally done with school. It was one I had long been composing in my
sleeping

The Revenge of the Boomers – why Boomers need to become techno-literate!

I heard a great story in a workshop in which I was involved with a group of educators. We were talking about ‘Rethinking Education’ and in particular the way in which technology is impacting on education. As you can imagine
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The Nightmare of no more silence: A leadership challenge.

It was a statement that immediately arrested my imagination. A statement that was simple yet profound and one that conveyed an idea that proved unshakable. It was a statement that demanded contemplation and had me immediately reaching for a means
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What a Difference Difference Makes

By Prof Nick Barker and Dr Graeme Codrington, TomorrowToday Difference matters. Globalization has resulted in increasing uncertainty, interdependence and complexity, coupled with accelerating and non-linear change. It has also resulted – unexpectedly – in a growing emphasis on difference. While
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Secrets to Success in a New World of Work: High Tech, High Touch, High Trust

The world we live and work in has become increasingly complex in the past two decades. Rapid advances in technology, together with globalization and fast growth all combined to rewrite the rules of success, failure and organizational design. The result

Scott Thompson of Yahoo should resign – not for lying, though

Scott Thompson is the CEO of Yahoo, a position he has held since January, after moving from PayPal. An activist shareholder recently discovered that Scott has falsified his CV and bio, claiming to have a BA in Computer Science when

The CEO’s guide to strategy

What is “strategy”? This is a question that numerous executives, academics and scholars have asked. Countless books, papers and dissertations have been written about the subject. S+B Magazine recently wrote a short article on the subject titled Strategy: An Executive’s Definition and

Barefoot Leadership: The neglected activity of leaders

Play is important. For any child, play is serious stuff and central to their daily activities. We have lots of expressions that would underscore the importance of play (all work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy is one

How to attract Gen Y into engineering – a case study from MOL

I am sitting in a presentation by Gabor Varjasi, Head of Competency Development and Strategic HR at MOL Group. This is at Stamford Global‘s Talent for Tomorrow conference in Vienna. MOL have a similar problem to many companies around the
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Write drunk, edit sober. Good advice for leaders?

“Write drunk, edit sober” is something Ernest Hemingway allegedly once said. I think it is good advice, except maybe for alcoholics! The kind of writing that tends to inspire me is writing that has passion, flow and somehow captures grand
barefeet

Barefoot Leadership: The neglected activity of leaders

Play is important. For any child, play is serious stuff and central to their daily activities. We have lots of expressions that would underscore the importance of play (all work and no play makes Johnny a dull boy is one

BRICS: The Building Blocks for the Future – and five things smart leaders understand!

It was Jim O’Neill, Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, who some 10 years ago, coined the acronym, ‘BRIC’ – a grouping of emerging economies namely, Brazil, Russia, India, and China. Then, in a more recent move in 2012, South
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BRICS: The Building Blocks for Future – and five things smart leaders understand!

  It was Jim O’Neill, Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, who some 10 years ago, coined the acronym, ‘BRIC’ – a grouping of emerging economies namely, Brazil, Russia, India, and China. Then, in a more recent move, South Africa
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Light-hearted Leadership Lessons from Wembley & the Red Men

It started as an overheard conversation in Delhi, India and ended up as an unforgettable day in London, England. Specifically, Wembley stadium. The over-heard conversation was between delegates on a leadership programme in which I was involved. They were chatting

Leading Diversity: The Zoo versus The Wild

I was recently asked to write an article for the Switch and Shift leadership blog. I picked up a theme that has been a significant one for our team for many years. It is one that our new business partner,

Leading Diversity: The Zoo versus The Wild

I was recently asked to write an article for the Switch and Shift leadership blog. I picked up a theme that has been a significant one for our team for many years. It is one that our new business partner,
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Switching off the sun: Preparing for the next generation in the workplace

Hannah (the daughter of a colleague) was strapped in her car seat as her parents headed off for a weekend away. Hannah is a bright, engaging two-year-old and no doubt had thought plenty of thoughts from this particular vantage point,

Lessons from a 30min conversation with Wikipedia Founder

Last night I arrived in Lagos to present a session on social media strategy. I was met at the airport by the a very professional and very friendly man who guided me into that parking lot outside. The parking lot

Next steps for the future of women’s equality

I was watching some women’s sport last weekend, and then followed the controversy around women in the heart of golf at the Masters this weekend. There were a number of stories that intertwined to remind me again of how unequal
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The Magic Hill: Avoiding the optical illusions of leadership

They told me it was caused by the fairies who lived under the road. I don’t know about you, but I for one don’t buy that explanation at all. I mean, everybody knows that fairies don’t live under roads. Caused
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The Magic Hill: Avoiding the optical illusions of leadership

They told me it was caused by the fairies who lived under the road. I don’t know about you, but I for one don’t buy that explanation at all. I mean, everybody knows that fairies don’t live under roads. Caused

TomorrowToday’s tenth anniversary

Today is the tenth anniversary of the starting of our company, TomorrowToday. Ten years ago today, Barrie Bramley, Keith Coats and Graeme Codrington had lunch at a restaurant called Ruby’s in Fourways Mall, Sandton. We had already been working together
Social-business

Understanding the Social Agenda: what every leader needs to know about tomorrow

The Social Agenda will define the future of your company. It is that big, it is that important and it is that unavoidable! Let me explain what is the social agenda and why it is that important. The social agenda
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Hinduism Provides Business Model for Forward Thinking Leaders

What you don’t see online with HBR’s article The CEO’s Role in Business Model Reinvention is my favourite part of the article in the print version.  The online version provides a forward looking business model framework designed to “manage the
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Seeing the real magic: A reminder for all leaders!

It was a party. Not just any party, but a ‘fairy party’. The occasion was the fourth birthday of my godchild Jordan. It had been her call and fairy theme it was to be. Now that was fine, except for
Lone-Ranger

The Critical Core of Leadership

Adolescence is a tricky period. It has been described as that period in a young person’s life when they refuse to believe that some day they will be as dumb as their parents. As Mark Twain so eloquently put it:

Reimagining Capitalism – as Principled, Patient, and Truly Social

Polly LaBarre has written an excellent and thought-provoking piece on the Harvard Business Review blog (thanks to Pete Laburn for alerting me to this). It is becoming increasingly clear that unfettered, free market capitalism is a discredited system. Communism was

How well do you really know your Gen Y employees?

As Gen Y employees continue to enter the workplace with their own approach and new expectations of what the world of work should be like, research continues to provide valuable insights for employers. Two recent reports were particularly interesting. In
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I Love Travel: Wisdom from the Journey

I love travel. It is early Sunday morning (or at least I think it is) and I am sitting in the Emirates business lounge awaiting my connecting flight to Gaungzhou, China. It is a whistle-stop trip – just four nights

Insider Trading is legal for US Senators: unbelievable corruption at the heart of US government

At the heart of capitalism is a set of rules that govern how economies work – they make the whole system function. One of the pillars of capitalism is the understanding of an efficient market, which requires that everyone in
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Manchester and London showcases: ‘Leadership Under Pressure’ – 26 and 27 March 2012

Leadership Under Pressure Your are invited to an inspiring event with five international speakers from the world of sport and business, focusing on the necessary mindsets needed for doing business in tomorrow’s world. The events will take place on the
What-goes-around

Knock, knock . . . who’s there? Leadership and reciprocity: What goes around comes around

‘He should represent South Africa at sleeping,’ was the SMS we received from Keegan’s host after he had been in the UK for a few days. Any parent of a teenager will know about the amazing capacity for sleep that

Too Big to Fail: The Need for Leaders to Remember

Imagine a workforce that takes initiative, accepts responsibility for their work, their learning and their company. Imagine an environment where there is energy, goodwill and a shared camaraderie. Image! Anybody who thinks that this isn’t desirable, who thinks this impossible,
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Too Big to Fail: The Need for Leaders to Remember

Imagine a workforce that takes initiative, accepts responsibility for their work, their learning and their company. Imagine an environment where there is energy, goodwill and a shared comrade. Image! Anybody who thinks that this isn’t desirable, who thinks this impossible,
Swim-Trg

Leadership: What Is Your Training Schedule?

Swimmers take your marks . . . All three of our kids can swim. Two of them, Tamryn and Sipho, rather well. In fact both have won Victrix/Victor Ludorum for their aqua efforts and Sipho has gained his provincial colours.
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The map is not the territory

Sitting in Dubai at a senior mangers conference for one of the biggest companies in the world and something became very evident to me. The map is not the territory It’s true that you can look at all the new
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Pies, Profits and Paris: Leadership and Dreams

It started out as a pie business during a school entrepreneur’s week. The girls were required to work in teams and start some sort of business, the proceeds of which were to be shared with the school. Tamryn, Ronwyn and

Smart Leadership: Looking for Answers by Inviting the Questions

‘But why?’ can be two exasperating words, words that chisel away at parental resolve like water dripping on a tin roof. Of course the fact that they are used in a highly concentrated way at around the three-year benchmark makes
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Smart Leadership: Looking for Answers by Inviting the Questions

‘But why?’ can be two exasperating words, words that chisel away at parental resolve like water dripping on a tin roof. Of course the fact that they are used in a highly concentrated way at around the three-year benchmark makes

Capitalism in Crisis

The FT has launched a provocative new series called Capitalism in Crisis. At TomorrowToday we’ve been pointing this out for the past ten years and helping leading companies find solutions. We are excited that the general mass media is at long
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The South African, the Australian and the Blonde: The flawed maxim of leadership

Children seldom misquote you. In fact, they more often than not repeat exactly what you shouldn’t have said. In response to the Sunday School (what a terrible name for any freedom loving kid! – it should have been ditched decades

Note to Leaders: You are not alone

How often have you heard those in leadership positions utter the mantra, ‘It’s lonely at the top’? They usually serve it up in a sort of self-congratulatory and somewhat condescending manner that expects no one but themselves to really understand.
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Note to Leaders: You are not alone

How often have you heard those in leadership positions utter the mantra, ‘It’s lonely at the top’? They usually serve it up in a sort of self-congratulatory and somewhat condescending manner that expects no one but themselves to really understand.
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What can beer teach us about systems?

The Beer Game was invented by MIT Sloan School of Management in the 1960s and has since been used in academic and corporate fields of study alike to demonstrate on a practical level what it means to think in systems.

Exploring the Future: What Leaders Need to Learn

Sitting with two of my kids the other day I asked them, “so what can we learn from the great Explorers of the past?” – a probing question fueled by something I was reading at the time. “Like the guys
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Exploring the Future: What Leaders Need to Learn

Sitting with two of my kids the other day I asked them, “so what can we learn from the great Explorers of the past?” – a probing question fueled by something I was reading at the time. “Like the guys

This changing world demands we redefine leadership

Pete Laburn recently sourced this excellent article by journalist, Judith Ancer. The original source has now been removed, for some reason, so I have included it in full below. Although primarily directed a parents raising children, this piece epitomises what

America in 2012 – an important, and scary year lies ahead

It was Abraham Lincoln who said, “America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.” I am not one of the doomsayers about America’s future. I think
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Can I drive, Dad? …Leaders and Control.

Control is a word that is arguably the source of the greatest conflicts, whether you are a leader or a parent. In the early years of parenting the issue of control is often reminiscent of a ‘phony war’ – one
brilliant-ideas

A Call for Audacity!

“The world needs invention and daring now more than ever. Now is the time for audacity, not austerity.” This month’s HBR is spotlighting being happy and being audacious.  Why are we not exploiting the power of happiness and why are

The challenges and opportunities facing South Africa in 2012

Trevor Manuel was moved our of the Treasury some time ago and has spent much of his time in a new entity called the National Planning Commission (NPC) of South Africa. The NPC is tasked with identifying and responding to
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Getting Fit For The Future: Essential Questions For Leaders As You Enter 2012

It is that time of year that invites reflection about what has been and what might be. We stand on the cusp of 2012, about to confine 2011 to the scrapbook. It is a good time to be asking questions
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Santa CEO: Leadership Lessons from Santa

The big guy in the red suit heads up a pretty impressive outfit. A year of frantic, precision driven preparation, keeping a host of little people motivated, focus and warm in extreme conditions and then all culminating in a mind-boggling

Today, a Day of Reconciliation

On the 16th December, South Africans have the day off work. As a nation we are very good at public holidays, having 12 in total every year. Unlike in some countries in the world, where only civil servants and banks
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10 Leadership Lessons from Santa

Ho, Ho Ho…it’s that time of year again when the tinsel comes out, trees get decorated and dietary regimes along with turkeys get stuffed. The old guy with the impressive beard comes out from his reclusive lair to both delight
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Good to Great… to Gone!

Jim Collins got it wrong. Not totally wrong, but wrong enough that we need to be careful (as always) about who we listen to when designing companies for future success. Too often, leaders take a shortcut and blindly apply models

Preparing to Leave: An Essential Reminder to Leaders Everywhere

The countdown has started. Of course there are many ‘countdowns’ as kids grow up, but this one is perhaps the biggest whilst they remain under your roof and in your fridge. The one I am referring to, of course, is
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Preparing to Leave: An Essential Reminder to Leaders Everywhere.

The countdown has started. Of course there are many ‘countdowns’ as kids grow up, but this one is perhaps the biggest whilst they remain under your roof and in your fridge. The one I am referring to, of course, is

100’s of innovative ways to reinvent management. Join the management hackathon now!

How do we reinvent management & capitalism? How do we make people’s jobs more inspiring and meaningful? How can companies deliver more value to society and their customers? These are just some of the questions that my colleagues and myself

Does a CEO need to blog?

If you were to take one look at the world today, it would be obvious that social media has become a very important communication tool. Ask yourself this question “can a CEO remain relevant if they are not versed in
Red-Nose

Stuck Noses: Leaders who help others ‘get it’.

‘Daddy, my nose is stuck,’ was the somber diagnosis from three-year-old Keegan who was playing host to a heavy cold. I had never before heard it put that way but could certainly identify with the sentiment. After all, who amongst
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What You Don’t Do, Can Hurt You!

I full heartedly agree that we need more Courage in The C-Suite and I second Rosabeth’s call for leadership courage.  Lack of courage is an invisible mistake and acts of courage are certainly not absent of fear.  Furthermore, lack of

Gandhi CEO – A Summary

One of our associates, Pete Laburn, recently posted a precis of a new book entitled, Gandhi CEO (buy it at Amazon.com). You can read Pete’s blog here. The book’s sub title explains the general theme of the book: 14 principles
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Who is the referee? Leading without a stunt double

Saturday afternoon weddings. Why is it that weddings always seem to clash with the one sports event that you have been waiting months to attend or watch? And how come this head-on collision between the wedding and the sports event

A Warning to Leaders: Turbulence is not the Danger

Flying into the small South African regional airport of Port Elizabeth recently I was reminded why it is I hold to the wisdom, ‘the bigger the plane the better’! As we were tossed around by the not-so-clear-air turbulence in the
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A Warning to Leaders: Turbulence is not the Danger

Flying into Port Elizabeth recently I was reminded why it is I hold to the wisdom, ‘the bigger the plane the better’! As we were tossed around by the not-so-clear-air turbulence in the small SAA Express plane, flying seemed so

The Future workplace: How technology, globalisation and the environment is affecting the way we work

Predicting the future is not an exact science. However, in these days of rapidly changing technology, it has become more imperative than ever for companies to look ahead and try and predict how technological advances, globalisation, environmental concerns and people’s

Living Up To Expectations: Understanding Generational Expectations in the Workplace

Not only are expectations subject to personal nuances, they can be further understood by looking at broad generational values that underpin behaviour. Generational Theory as originally promoted by Howe and Strauss, two Yale and Harvard trained political economists, suggests that
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Innovation: Failing into the Future

If you want your company to be innovative, failure is not an option…it is essential. Innovation is built on the willingness to try new things and the understanding that failure will be an inevitable road-hump along the way. It is

Leadership in the New World of Work

One of the biggest challenges Leaders face is an understanding that the wisdom and leadership practice that has brought us to this point, is unlikely to get us to where it is we need to be in the future.  The
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Living Up To Expectations: Understanding Generational Expectations in the Workplace

Not only are expectations subject to personal nuances, they can be further understood by looking at broad generational values that underpin behaviour. Generational Theory as originally promoted by Howe and Strauss, two Yale and Harvard trained political economists, suggests that
Leadership

Leadership in the New World of Work

One of the biggest challenges Leaders face is an understanding that the wisdom and leadership practice that has brought us to this point, is unlikely to get us to where it is we need to be in the future.  The
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Making Profits with Purpose Gains Momentum

While many skeptics still battle the notion that not all profits are equal, great companies continue proving that Creating Shared Valuereaps significant enduring benefits.   This movement is at front and center stage with many of our brilliant thought leaders and

The need for Social Reinvention

One of our colleagues in South Africa, Mike Saunders, is a leading expert in digital media and the emerging world of social business. To explain what he means by this, he wrote an excellent blog entry which we’re thrilled to

Doing “something” – not a clever way to live your life

“Something has to be done”. “We have to be seen to be doing something”. These are basic human responses to crisis and fear: a deep seated desire to respond, react, control. It’s instinctive, and hard to ignore. But it is
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Reverse Mentoring: What Leaders Can Learn From The ‘Young Snots’

It did not take very long for me to realize that, in this instance, I had more learn than to teach. It was to prove an accurate assessment. As coffee was served, Mike sat opposite me having requested the meeting,
Einstein-21

Reverse Mentoring: What Leaders Can Learn From The 'Young Snots'

It did not take very long for me to realize that, in this instance, I had more learn than to teach. It was to prove an accurate assessment. As coffee was served, Mike sat opposite me having requested the meeting,
Velveteen-Rabbit

A Leadership Lesson from The Velveteen Rabbit

One of my all-time favourite stories is Margery Williams’ The Velveteen Rabbit, the enchanting story of how a toy rabbit becomes real. Like most good children’s stories, it holds valuable lessons for adults as well. The story helps us learn

Talent is About to Change – Surprising thoughts on a new world of work for talent

This post was first published in the WITS Journal, June 2011. The “Great Recession” of the past few years has been more than merely an economic downturn. As this decade unfolds it will become increasingly clear that it also acted
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Talent is About to Change – Surprising thoughts on a new world of work for talent

This post was first published in the WITS Journal, June 2011. The “Great Recession” of the past few years has been more than merely an economic downturn. As this decade unfolds it will become increasingly clear that it also acted
Leadership1

What difference does one man (or woman) make?

Nelson Mandela, John F. Kennedy, Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Sir Winston Churchill, Margaret Thatcher, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Mahatma Gandhi, Hitler, Stalin, Queen Elizabeth I, Alexander the Great, Plato, Sophocles, Aristotle, Shaka Zulu, Napoleon III, Robert Mugabe, Saddam Hussein,

Honeybees and Locusts – A business case for Sustainable Leadership

Editor’s note: Pete Laburn, one of TomorrowToday’s associates and contributor to this blog is a vociferous reader, and an excellent summariser. This contribution first appeared on his website on 6 October 2011. You can buy the book he refers to
Integrity

“It’s not important”: Leadership and Integrity

The mobile phone had been stolen. It was the end of the world – well, certainly the end of all meaningful existence. Replacement costs were high and money in the bank was low. Hadn’t we told him to save for
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What horses can teach us about ourselves; and how we can apply this at work

I am a horsey person; and I come from a long line of horsey people. I ride as often as I can; and each time that I do I am inspired and amazed at the magnificence and humility of my
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CEO: The Director of Storytelling

‘Once upon a time . . .’ . . . Such magical words, spoken often in a home with little people – words that contrive to conjure up all kinds of memories and emotions, unleash expectations and hold promise; words
Gift

The irrefutable ‘Law of Gifts’ & The Cost of Procrastination

The older they are the more expensive they become. It is an irrefutable law of parenting. I remember the days when I could arrive home after a business trip and any small, inconsequential thing would appease the kids and serve

What I learnt from Steve Jobs’ life and death

The passing of Steve Jobs will no doubt bring a deserved flurry of eulogies over the next few days and weeks. He will be remembered by history as one of the architects of a new age, and I feel it
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What I learnt from Steve Jobs’ life and death

The passing of Steve Jobs will no doubt bring a deserved flurry of eulogies over the next few days and weeks. He will be remembered by history as one of the architects of a new age, and I feel it
Alcataz

Leadership’s Hardest Task

I don’t know how he did it, but he did. Already running late, we were rushing to join friends for a social occasion when a distant cry echoed from the smallest room in the house. Keegan had locked himself in
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What is Your Question? Four Things Leaders Need to Understand

The world’s fragile economy teeters once again on the edge of the abyss. For those who don’t understand the intricate economic mechanics of how we got to this place, but fully appreciate the impact of any recession from personal experience,
Seeing-colours

The Leader’s Challenge: Curiosity rather than Certainty

Sipho’s adoption meant that the lily-white Coats herd now acquired its own resident ‘black sheep’ – a literal rather than figurative turn of phrase, naturally. Of course Sipho’s presence in the family has given us our own unique insights and
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Trust Cannot be Taught, it Can Only be Experienced

The popularity of the word “trust” is at an all time high.  While I celebrate the wide spread appreciation for the significance of trust in business, it is important to recognize that trust cannot be learned through a book or
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Global Leadership Principles from which to Lead: learning from the Asia Pacific Leadership Program

For the past 10 years I have had the privilege to be part of the teaching facility of the Asia Pacific Leadership Program (APLP) based at the East West Center in Hawaii. And yes, Hawaii is not too shabby a
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Global Leadership Principles from which to Lead: learning from the Asia Pacific Leadership Program

For the past 10 years I have had the privilege to be part of the teaching facility of the Asia Pacific Leadership Program (APLP) based at the East West Center in Hawaii. And yes, Hawaii is not too shabby a

Why industry ‘best practice’ is not ‘best strategy’ for you

I am an educator, speaker and facilitator, and work mainly with large organisations, helping them make sense of the new world of work. Most of the time I do this through workshops and keynote presentations. As I work through briefings

Why industry ‘best practice’ is not ‘best strategy’ for you

I am an educator, speaker and facilitator, and work mainly with large organisations, helping them make sense of the new world of work. Most of the time I do this through workshops and keynote presentations. As I work through briefings
Ego

Speaking for God: Leaders who think CEO spells G-O-D

Keegan and Tamryn are playing in the bedroom. I am within earshot and party to the following conversation which has to do with Keegan asking for a turn at whatever it is that Tamryn is doing. ‘What does God say?’
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With conference season approaching, there are only two questions you should be asking

Traditionally, in the yearly business cycle, the end part of the year is conference season. All done and dusted by the end of November, so that December parties and holidays can be taken and people can rest, unwind, switch off,
Cats-on-Cell

Sperm and Cells: Leading in a Connected World

It all started when I was on the phone and in walked not one but two neighbourhood cats. Showing little, well actually no respect, they sauntered over to Tigger’s food bowl (that’s our feline resident) and began to tuck in.
Cats-on-Cell1

Sperm and Cells: Leading in a Connected World

It all started when I was on the phone and in walked not one but two neighbourhood cats. Showing little, well actually no respect, they sauntered over to Tigger’s food bowl (that’s our feline resident) and began to tuck in.
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Measuring the Wrong Things the Wrong Way in Health Care

HBR has done it again, September’s issue does not disappoint!   One article in particular is near and dear to my heart and to the heart of many of my clients, How to Solve the Cost Crisis in Health Care.  Michael
power-psychology

Manipulation Vs. Cultivation

As the relevance of psychologyin business strategy continues to gain momentum I am most struck by how predictably irrational we are responding to this new found level of awareness.  There has been so much talk over the past year about
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A Person Who Listens to Horses Can Talk to People

In an age where we have to be able to talk to people; and all sorts of people, my feeling is that we can learn a lot from horses. Most people find them intimidating, because of their physical strength, but

A note to Generation X: Learn How to Manage Up

The concept of “managing up” is well established in management and leadership theory. As someone who reports to a boss, you need to use many different techniques to get your boss’s attention, and influence your boss to act, think and
ABC-Blocks

As Easy as A B C: Questions Leaders Need to Ask Themselves

I once wrote a newsletter to friends using each letter of the alphabet to share an item of family news. Here is an extract of two of the news items that appeared under ‘V’ and ‘W’ – not easy letters

Gary Hamel on Generation Y

Gary Hamel, the best selling author and global guru on innovation, has turned his attentions to the impact that the next generation of young people is having on the workplace. Hamel’s latest book is on the Future of Management, and
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Creating Thicker Customer Experiences

With the emergence and growing momentum of Customer Experience as a strategic imperative, companies are becoming more and more passionate and polarized. At one extreme, we see companies failing to invest enough resources. At the other end we see some
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Generation Y and the Performance Review

Meet Kyle Lagunas – He is the HR Analyst at Software Advice, and blogs about trends and technology in the exciting world of human resources. I’m introducing you to him because he wrote this post and sent it to me to
Falling-off-Bike

The Fundamentals of Physics: Trust – the Leader’s Greatest Measure

Kids and bikes. Every parent can tell stories about this subject. Recently a friend and former BMX champion excitedly told me about the bike he was choosing for his daughter’s third birthday. Detailed explanations were offered about the aerodynamics and

The Future of Leadership: Authenticity and Adaptive Intelligence

“The problem is not that they are not watching what you do, the problem is they are” is something that Tom Peters once said. He is right. Leaders are under greater scrutiny than they have ever been due to the
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The Future of Leadership: Authenticity and Adaptive Intelligence

“The problem is not that they are not watching what you do, the problem is they are” is something that Tom Peters once said. He is right. Leaders are under greater scrutiny than they have ever been due to the
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What’s your Why, How and What?

Last week Keith and I completed a 4 day Leadership Development Programme with one of our clients. It was delivered in the form of two 2-day blocks, split one month apart. The 4 days were divided up into: Leadership and

What’s your Why, How and What?

Last week Keith Coats and I completed a 4 day Leadership Development Programme with one of our clients. It was delivered in the form of two 2-day blocks, split one month apart. The 4 days were divided up into: Leadership
smoke_bomb_02

The Bomb, the Keys and that Damn Phone: Learning from Chaos

It was always going to be a close call. The misplaced keys simply made it impossible . . . But let me backtrack to the beginning. It was the beginning of the notorious ‘flea season’ – that time of the
Virgin-bat

Dad, what’s a virgin? Leadership and Communication

Keegan’s birthday. The decision is that he can take a select few to a movie and that mom and dad will act as chauffeurs for the occasion. The select few turn out to be the entire rugby team; well, so

Your future boss may be a robot

I came across a very neat article The Boss Is Robotic, and Rolling Up Behind You By JOHN MARKOFF in the New York Times which paints fascinating picture of how telerobotics and robotics could become a useful leadership tool. As

What the 21st century needs

In 1943, the Chairman of IBM, Thomas Watson said, ‘I think there is a world market for maybe 5 computers.’ Thomas Watson was wrong. He wouldn’t recognize the world as it is today. Trade liberalization, globalization, advances in technology, the
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Managing Millennials

This article is an excerpt from Connecting Generations: The Sourcebook by Claire Raines (2002). For more about the work that Claire and her colleagues do, go to her website. I get questions every month from businesspeople looking for something about
Letter-to-Santa

Self-evaluation: the means to enduring effectiveness

I unashamedly love Christmas and all that it brings with it. Deep down I suspect that some mistake was made in the cosmic scheme of things as I would be far better suited to a northern hemisphere Christmas than to
Free-Willy1

Leadership and Diversity: Naming Body Parts

I remember once reading that middle-age happens when you keep thinking that in a couple of weeks you’ll be back to normal. To be honest I am not sure that I am clear as to exactly what constitutes ‘normality’ –
Grace

The Nature of Leadership:The Grace of Great Things

  The Sioux believe that children are a gift from God – a  gift so sacred, so holy, that they are kept off the ground for the entire first year of their life. The Sioux also believe that children are
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My Public Apology to Chris Anderson

This is a formal and public apology to Chris Anderson. Chris has a sense of humour, and I got caught out. Chris is one of the main drivers behind TED, and he’s also a co-author of The Email Charter. A week or

What women want – The future of leadership

A few years ago, I reflected on an article in the February 2004 fast Company magazine about why women have not rushed into the top bosses positions. In the last few years, that reflection has not changed. Women still have
Free-Willy

Leadership and Diversity: Naming Body Parts

I remember once reading that middle-age happens when you keep thinking that in a couple of weeks you’ll be back to normal. To be honest I am not sure that I am clear as to exactly what constitutes ‘normality’ –
clarity

Unimaginable Clarity

It is often the case that highly sophisticated knowledge exists long before it’s significance in a broader context begins to resonate and be acted upon.  There lies enormous brilliance hidden in cross fertilizing knowledge; a conscious effort to rethink our
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Eyes Wide Shut: Visionary Leadership

Here is another extract from Keith Coats’ excellent book of leadership reflections, “Everything I Know About Leadership I Learnt from the Kids” (buy it now from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com). Eyes Wide Shut: Visionary Leadership ‘It’s your turn,’ accompanied by a

The New World of Work – Utopia for Women?

Our mothers, grandmothers and great-grandmothers fought hard for us. The equalities gained by the feminist movement have resulted in a steady rise in the proportion of women working in the UK; 70% at the last count. However, all is not

The Talent Exodus still looms large

Last year, I wrote on our South African sister company’s blog about a looming talent exodus. Nothing has happened in the preceding twelve months to change my mind. The recession is going to last longer than I thought it would
intangible_poster

What’s the difference between ‘success’ and ‘not failing’?

Economic Powerhousing (the process a nation deliberately commits itself to in order to be a global economic force to be reckoned with) is stronger than it has ever been. There are a host of nation states that braces the economic
intangible_poster1

What's the difference between 'success' and 'not failing'?

Economic Powerhousing (the process a nation deliberately commits itself to in order to be a global economic force to be reckoned with) is stronger than it has ever been. There are a host of nation states that braces the economic
Lion

Eyes Wide Shut: Visionary leadership

‘It’s your turn,’ accompanied by a rib-breaking jab to my side proved to be a firm deterrent to any further sleep and left me in no doubt that to protest would be about as successful as Custer’s last stand. Arising
Seasonal-Tree

A Leadership Reminder: Life is Seasonal

Let me start at the beginning. Some time ago I arrived home to be greeted by Tamryn’s: ‘Dad, can I please have a horse?’ I remember being asked a similar question by her older brother once, though if my memory
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Rethinking Capitalism – paring profits with purpose

Michael Porter, the Harvard Business School strategy guru says that strategies of the future will be led by companies that serve communities and understand the deep underlying needs of the communities that buy their products. Coined Creating Shared Value (CSV)
Question-key

“You Can Call Me Mr. Coats Now”: Leadership & Faith

“You can call me Mr. Coats” was the empathic reply given by one Sipho Coats age five to ‘Lochie’ (abbreviation for ‘Loch Ness Monster’ i.e. Vicky’s mom). All this transpired during a telephone conversation which became embroiled in why Lochie
business-school

Because You’re Not a Business School

Not too long ago TomorrowToday was invited to throw our hat into the ring for the procurement of an Executive Leadership Development Programme for an International Developmental Agency that falls under the auspices of the United Nations. I had done

Good leaders should only answer impossible questions

I had breakfast with a friend the other day, who also runs a fairly large company in South Africa. It’s my impression that there’s a conversation that happens behind the scenes in the world of leadership. A conversation that you’re
My-Book-Cover1

Everything I Know About Leadership I Learnt From The Kids: Part 1

Our colleague and co-founder of TomorrowToday, Keith Coats, is one of the world’s leading experts on leadership development. He is also a remarkable story teller and writer. A few years ago, we encouraged him to put into written form some
Candles

“I’m Six now” – An Invitation to Discovery

“I’m six now” were the first words to greet me on the morning of 1 December (a nice change to the usual rasping…”coffee”, emerging from the semi-comatose form lying next to me). It was also the first morning in six

Be corporate courageous – Five new scripts for competing in a world turned upside down

Script 2… The recent recession and financial crisis has been more than just an economic downturn, but a tipping point between the old and the new world of work. There is no going back and different times require a different

Think Different – Five new scripts for competing in a world turned upside down

Script 1… The recent recession and financial crisis has been more than just an economic downturn, but a tipping point between the old and the new world of work. There is no going back and different times require a different
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The New World of Work – What does it look like?

The New World of Work. You can’t go a week reading this Blog without reading the phrase once, twice and even thirty seven times. It’s what we do at TomorrowToday. It’s what we’re about. We eat, read, sleep and do

Top tips for mentoring the next generation of talent

In tough times, people matter. Ensuring your staff are passionate and focused is a critical leadership task right now. One of the most effective techniques for motivating your younger staff in particular is to provide ongoing development for them, especially

Africa in the world: Corruption is not just a developing world issue

At the moment, I am engaged in some significant research that will hopefully turn into a book and presentation sometime mid 2012. I am looking at the potential of sub Saharan Africa in the next two decades, and identifying the
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Africa in the world: Corruption is not just a developing world issue

At the moment, I am engaged in some significant research that will hopefully turn into a book and presentation sometime mid 2012. I am looking at the potential of sub Saharan Africa in the next two decades, and identifying the
Ownership

Ownership 2.0: Expectations from management

“His heart is pounding as he tries to fight off the tension warring in his soul. A good few days have been dragging past now since he delivered his last address to the people. Sleeping and eating hasn’t been the
My-Book-Cover

Everything I Know About Leadership I Learnt From The Kids: Part 1

I will never forget the emotions that accompanied holding my firstborn, a son, in my arms for the very first time. I felt so proud. Well actually, I felt so very clever, like I had achieved this amazing feat all
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SAA Express…Another Oxymoron!

The first warning sign was a message informing me that my booked flight had been cancelled and I was now on a flight that departed some 30 minutes later. Not great but this seems to be something of a frequent

The Future of the Organisation: A Compelling Vision

In their book, The Individualized Corporation[1], Sumantra Ghoshal[2]and ChristopherA. Bartlett[3] (Random House, 2000) (Buy it at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com) present an alternative view of what the future of the organisation might be. Their intent is not to provide a detailed
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When all is said and done, who is Warren Buffett?

One lady or gentleman is about to walk the suspension bridge in the world of investing. In Omaha, Nebraska, the headquarters of one particular investment firm is buzzing. The alpha male, having valiantly grown his pride, is on the way
Mr-Bean

What will be funny in Egypt? A Leadership Lesson

What will be funny in Egypt? Well right now, not much perhaps but this question isn’t connected to current events unravelling in that part of the world. Rather, it is a guiding question that underpinned the making of the Mr
Mr-Bean1

What will be funny in Egypt? A Leadership Lesson

What will be funny in Egypt? Well right now, not much perhaps but this question isn’t connected to current events unravelling in that part of the world. Rather, it is a guiding question that underpinned the making of the Mr
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Those Helicopter ‘Pilots’ At OR Tambo Are Masterful

Every time I come through OR Tambo, having checked in and whilst making my way to the security check-in, I stop and watch those guys selling toy helicopters. They’re masterful. The toy is simple. It goes up and it goes
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Those Helicopter 'Pilots' At OR Tambo Are Masterful

Every time I come through OR Tambo, having checked in and whilst making my way to the security check-in, I stop and watch those guys selling toy helicopters. They’re masterful. The toy is simple. It goes up and it goes

Books every leader should read

In the TomorrowToday UK team’s ezine newsletter last Friday, we gave an excellent list of books that leaders should be reading. Have you read any of these? If so, what did you think of them? What else would you add

Books every leader should read

In the TomorrowToday UK team’s ezine newsletter last Friday, we gave an excellent list of books that leaders should be reading. Have you read any of these? If so, what did you think of them? What else would you add

What’s wrong (and right) with “best company to work for” lists

I have never been a big fan of “best company to work for” lists. They exist in many countries, and are normally sponsored by a high profile entity (Fortune magazine in the US, The Sunday Times in the UK and
Control-sign

The End of Control

Recently I was part of an innovative process design to explore how a business could either make or save money through the use of using social technology. The participants were put into groups and the process involved incubating and hatching

Hearing God Thinking: Journeying Towards the New World of Work.

“In the beautiful complexity of a new universe that Einstein has shown us, I for one, have no doubt I can hear God thinking” – the words of Arthur Eddington, the British scientist, in the wake of him having proved
money1

Making Profit with Purpose for a Better Customer Experience

This podcast is expanding on our previous discussion on Customer Experience Driving Profits with Purpose. We need to continue to examine the impact the creating shared value movement offers those of us that are helping shape customer experience transformations.  One

Exploitation of Natural Resources

Pete Laburn, one of this blog’s contributors and an associate of TomorrowToday, is one of the clearest thinkers on strategy we know. He’s developing a new talk on the key issues facing the world and business leaders today, and what
Black-Shoes

The Black Shoe Conundrum

A hectic domestic travel schedule sees me go through the motions when it comes to packing and unpacking. The self-imposed checks have proved reliable and tend to minimize or reduce loss and forgetfulness. Well until that is, until this present
ReidSignature

Personal Mail from CEO of LinkedIn to me

It was all over the new last week. LinkedIn hit 100 million users (the majority of whom sit outside of the US). As part of that milestone achievement, the CEO of LinkedIn (Reid Hoffman) sent a personal(ised) mail to the
Green-Stop-Sign

Social Business: Just Another Oxymoron or the Future of Business?

I have always enjoyed the often subtle and inherent humour embedded in an oxymoron, a term which could be described as two contradictory words that find themselves as unlikely bedfellows. Several immediately come to mind: plastic glasses, jumbo shrimp, airline
Rearview-Mirror

One Sentence That Will Kill Innovation

A lot is written and said about innovation. Leaders are exhorted to innovate at all costs and there is no shortage of hired help when it comes to the theory, formation and implementation of innovative procedures. But there is an
Nestle-CSV

Customer Experience Driving Purpose and Profits

While I celebrate that Customer Experience is Gaining Momentum, I believe that the intention and perception of the majority of those participating in this movement remains outdated and needs to be addressed in order to sustain and harness the untapped
online-sales

Online Sales Leads: Best be Quick!

In a recent HBR there was an interesting article titled ‘The Short Life of Online Sales’ by authors Oldroyd, McElheran and Elkington in which they research online sales effectiveness. Their findings? Most companies are simply not quick enough. Increasingly various
employee-engagement

How to stop your staff leaving as the economy improves

Your best employees could very well have one eye on the door. Once the economic recovery begins in earnest they’ll have plenty of new opportunities to choose from – and businesses around the world will begin to experience an exodus
Cavelry

What to do when rules don’t make sense: Mount from the right!

In the horse world, mounting your steed from the left side is taken as ‘the way to do it’. This conventional wisdom has lead to horses becoming accustomed to being mounted from the left, reinforcing an important conditioning behaviour concerning

Savvy Leadership: Learning from Horses

As I write this I am once again in the Dargle area located in the picturesque Midlands of Kwa Zulu Natal. It is a place that when created surely must have brought a smile to the Creator; reflection of a

Heroic Leadership – A Summary

This post was first published on Pete Laburn’s blog in Feb 2011 After living for seven years as a Jesuit seminarian, practicing vows of poverty, chastity and obedience to the Jesuit general in Rome, Chris Lowney was transformed into a
Brilliant

6 Most Brilliant Leadership Strategies

Last month Geoffrey James provided me with the rare honour of guest posting my 5 Most Dimwitted Leadership Strategies on BNET’s Sales Machine.  Geoffrey is a prolific writer with a highly provocative and cynical nature reflected in his outspoken readers. 
Charlie-Sheen

The Sheen is off Charlie

If what we read is true then we might well have seen the last of Charlie Sheen and Two and a Half Men. Sheen’s inability to act like a normal human being has seen the plug being pulled on one
Hannibal

A Leadership Lesson from History: On Impetuosity & Avalanches

One of the greatest strategists, a hero in his time who undertook one of the most daring feats in military history, paid the price for his own arrogance and impetuosity with the loss of achieving the thing he desired most

Business must get serious about mentoring

According to the article “Winning the race for talent in emerging markets” – by Douglas A. Ready, Linda A. Hill, and Jay A. Conger (HBR), developing world countries have a large shortage of adequately experienced people from lower to middle management

5 Minds for the Future – A Summary

This post was first published on Pete Laburn’s blog in Feb 2011 In his book, ‘5 Minds for the Future’ (buy it now at Amazon.co.uk and Kalahari.net) Howard Gardner concerns himself with the kinds of minds that people will need

Battling cultural imperialism (a critical issue in the new world of work)

I was both amused and amazed to see this tweet a day or so ago: When will China become civilised? Chinese court confirms sentence on US man http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12502111 The news report referred to is about a Chinese-born American citizen, Xue

Battling cultural imperialism (a critical issue in the new world of work)

I was both amused and amazed to see this tweet a day or so ago: When will China become civilised? Chinese court confirms sentence on US man http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-pacific-12502111 The news report referred to is about a Chinese-born American citizen, Xue
Faster-Horses

Leading Innovation: Is it not just about a Faster Horse?

“If I had asked my customers what they wanted, they’d have said a faster horse” is something attributed to Henry Ford. It was Ford’s ability to see the unseen that fuelled an entirely new habit of transportation in America. The
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A Question of Trust?

“Trust men and they will be true to you; treat them greatly, and they will show themselves great” Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803 – 1882) I love Penelope Trunk’s blogs at the Brazen Careerist. They contain great thoughts and advice about

Benefit from Thought-Provocateuring

We benefit from looking at things differently. Sometimes that requires stepping back and looking not at the “what” or “how” but the “why”. Why do something that way? Do you ever wonder why your company (or a competitor) does things
Fox-Hedgehog

Fox or Hedgehog? How you think will shape your future.

In 1953, well before the information revolution seized the planet, philosopher Isaiah Berlin divided thinkers into two basic categories: the fox and the hedgehog.  The difference is that hedgehogs know ‘one big thing’ whilst foxes know ‘many things’. A hedgehog
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RIP: The Death of the Middle Manager

One of the implications of the convergence of Gen Y and technology in the workspace could well be the demise of middle management. If that is you, then you have every reason to be concerned with this possibility. As with

Generation Mom X

How many Gen X women do you know well into their 30’s who are still completely focused on their careers, some married and some who don’t even have the time to entertain dating as they leave the office after 9pm,
Resilience

Resilience: Why It Is Important & How to Develop It

Any leader if asked whether or not he / she would like to have a resilient company or organization, is unlikely to give any answer other than an emphatic, “Of course I do”.  And whilst resilience is something ‘hoped for’
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Business must get serious about Mentoring

According to the article “Winning the race for talent in emerging markets” – by Douglas A. Ready, Linda A. Hill, and Jay A. Conger (HBR), developing world countries have a large shortage of adequately experienced people from lower to middle

Why companies need quests to be successful in today’s new world

In the old world of work, company executives spent hours, days and months agonising over vision, mission, values and purpose. The idea of having a vision is a good one. But the exercise of corporate vision has become an academic
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The Most Important Work Leaders Need to Do To Lead Into The Future.

Recently a CEO asked me an interesting question: What did I think is the most important quality or skill that leaders will need as they lead into the future? It is an intriguing question yet I found my answer without

When being creative, failure is always an option

Great companies make creativity and innovation a cornerstone of their culture and strategy. Creativity is driven by people wanting to make a difference. But people are often constrained by culture, regulation and risk controls – barriers to creativity. Customers say

How to give your staff bad news

I am a big fan of FT journalist Lucy Kellaway. Her column in the Financial Times is a joy to read (I subscribe to the FT, and also download her column as a free podcast in iTunes). Her primary interest
Humble-Pie

Eating Humble Pie: A Lesson in Customer Service

There is no doubt that the closer top management is to the customer, the more successful an organization is likely to be. Customer experience has long been mooted as the next battleground where competitive advantage will be won or lost.

Making Change Happen, and Making It Stick

Strategy+Business from Booz & Co is one of my favourite newsletters and websites. They recently published an excellent article on how to manage change in turbulent times. Making Change Happen, and Making It Stick Five factors make the greatest difference

Making Change Happen, and Making It Stick

Strategy+Business from Booz & Co is one of my favourite newsletters and websites. They recently published an excellent article on how to manage change in turbulent times – read it at their site or an extract below. Making Change Happen,

What you might have missed over the holidays

While most people were away on holidays, the TomorrowToday team was busy blogging – throughout the Christmas and New Year holidays, we continued to scan the new world of work for news, reviews and signs of change. We can’t help

UK’s Bribery Act and taking the moral high ground

This past week, the UK government said that they were putting on hold the introduction of the UK Bribery Act, which would make it illegal for UK companies to offer bribes when dealing with foreign companies. The Act was due

What is really happening in the US?

This post is syndicated from blog contributor, Sir Jeremy Greenstock of Gatehouse Advisory Partners We have become so used to regarding the United States as the world’s primary democratic, industrial and military power that it is hard for optimists not

Book Summary: From Strategy to Execution

I was recently sent a summary of a 2008 book, “From Strategy to Execution: Turning Accelerated Global Change into Opportunity” by Daniel Pantaleo and Nirmal Pal (Springer). It is ridiculously expensive, but you can buy it now from Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com

The Difference: 2000 & 2010

This post was first published on Pete Laburn’s blog in Dec 2010 10 years ago, futurists were saying that ‘In five to ten years 80% percent of of what drives the world will be driven by continuations, 15% of what

Time for remorse and apology for banks is past – or is it?

Yesterday, Bob Diamond, Barclays Bank’s CEO came before a parliamentary committee in London. As part of his submission, and when talking about banker’s bonuses and salaries, he said that the time for “remorse and apology” by banks over their role
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The Invitation of the Blank Page

The turning of the page from one year to the next invites both reflection on the year lived and aspirations for the year to come. Surveying the script on the worn and dog-eared pages of the past year invites reflection
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Strategic Intuition – A Brief Summary

This post was first published on Pete Laburn’s blog in Feb 2010 Have you ever wondered how some people come up with their great ideas, and wished you knew how to do the same? William Duggan’s book, ‘Strategic Intuition’ is
Stan-at-Googlplex

A Lesson & Warning from Stan the Dinosaur

Were you to enter Google’s Googleplex you would come face to kneecap with Stan. Stan is the nickname given to the bronze replica of a skeleton of a Tyrannosaurus Rex that guards the entrance to this impressive place of work.

A crisis of short-term minded leaders: Aprois moi, le deluge

Louis XV was king of France just before the French Revolution. He reigned from 1715 (when he was only five years old) to 1774 (the Revolution fomented throughout the 1780s, eventually erupting in unrest on the streets in 1789). Wikipedia
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Friends, Facebook & Filters: The Boomer Challenge.

An old school friend, with whom I had long since lost touch with, recently made contact with me via Facebook. It turns out we live in the same area and so naturally made time to meet over coffee. Hair is

What does the British media not understand about the Coalition government?

The British media are giving Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats a hard time at the moment. Today it is specifically about the Parliamentary vote about increasing university fees which took place this afternoon. What does the media not understand
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Which strategy would give you the greatest right to win?

I’ve just read an excellent article in Strategy + Business (S+B) called “the right to win” it raises an number of excellent questions about strategy in the new world of work. Walt Shill the head of consulting at Accenture believes
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Missing the Point: Control, Leaders & Social Technology

“Over the last two decades, the world has changed substantially. The economic, political, social, corporate, and personal rules that now apply bear scant relation to those applicable two decades ago. Different times require a different script” writes Kenichi Ohmae in
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When is a Team not a Team?

Somehow, after a few glasses of wine on Friday night, I found myself in a discussion about teams. My friend, a very accomplished and successful business owner, believes that there are no true teams in a business context – that

The new frontier for business – Intrepid explorers

Business leaders have recognised that in 2011 there will be no going back to normal, in fact there is now a new normal that involves a world where change is the new constant and complexity is the biggest challenge. The

Mind the Gap: Generations @ Work

This is the original submission as published as the Keynote feature in the Journal for Convergence (ISSN 1606-6162), Vol 5 No 4. An even more detailed version of this introduction to generational theory is available on our corporate website in
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Nine key workforce trends for the next decade

How the next few years will shape the future of the workplace in unprecedented and astounding ways. I was recently asked to contribute to a discussion about the most important forces that will shape the next decade of work. I
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How (not) to do business like Jack Welch

Since leaving GE, Jack Welch has refused to retire gracefully or quietly. He has continued to stay vocal and keep his profile in the media, especially by writing and disseminating business advice. I suppose one shouldn’t begrudge him this –

John Kotter on Icebergs, Penguins and 8 principles for leading change

One of the best books around on leading change must be John Kotter’s business novel “Our Iceberg is Melting: Changing and Succeeding Under Any Conditions” (Buy now at Amazon.co.uk or Kalahari.net). It’s written as a parable about a group of

Lessons in leadership succession planning from Kim Jong Il

I like The Economist’s Schumpeter, the topics are hugely relevant and the dry sense of humour tickles the right spot. The western style of leadership is in drastic need of radical rebooting, Schumpeter uses a “baseball bat” too hammer home

Successful CEO’s make customer intimacy their No 1 priority

As we crawl out of an energy sapping recession it is interesting to identify how leaders are responding to the new competitive and economic environment. IBM has completed a global study of over 1500 CEO and their excellent report “Capitalising

We live in a VUCA world

Last week I presented to the Proctor & Gamble Alumni Chapter in Geneva. The chairman for the event was Kevin Roberts the worldwide CEO for the advertising company Saatchi & Saatchi. In one of his comments he said something brilliant.
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CEOs lose faith in strategic planning, they should look to yacht racing for answers

The Great Recession has made CEOs rethink strategic planning. Walt Shill, head of the North American management consulting practice for Accenture believes that: “Strategy, as we knew it, is dead…Corporate clients decided that increased flexibility and accelerated decision making are

Employee engagement – one great question

About a year ago, I MC’ed an event by e3unlimited, a company focused on getting the most out of generation y. Bruce Morton and Emma Reynolds, the founders of e3, have now moved on (Bruce to Sydney and Emma to

The Liberal Democrats conference and UK public spending cuts

As the Liberal Democrat’s conference unfolds in Liverpool, and Nick Clegg enjoys unprecedented media coverage as the UK’s deputy prime minister, I must admit to a little bit of self-congratulation. On the day that Gordon Brown called the election (6
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Build a talented business – the genius of Nelson Mandela

This a a white paper and introduction chapter of the book that I’m writing, I’d value your views and comments greatly. The Assassin The sun rose quietly over Dawn Park, a suburb on the outskirts of Johannesburg, South Africa. It

Yes, it will cost more

I spend much of my time helping companies to create corporate cultures that will attract and retain talented young people. This involves looking at everything from terms and conditions of employment, remuneration policies and bonus schemes, to office layout, use

Boosting productivity in the new world of work

One of the defining features and challenges of the new world of work is the lack of engagement companies receive from their knowledge workers. This is a theme that we regularly speak and research about in order to identify ways

Business Continuity in Age of Constant Change

Conversations about knowledge continuity often relate to succession planning and the retirement of key older leaders. While these considerations are obviously important, they can mask the fact that, these days, business critical expertise and knowledge often reside lower down in

The world of tomorrow, today

In this warp-speed world it is no longer enough to learn from experience – you have to learn from the future! We live in a world where constant change is both a cliche and an understatement. Change, change, change. You’ve

Vital Leadership Skills for the 21st Century: A Global Mindset

The world is not really flat.  Not yet, anyway.  In his best-selling book about globalisation in the 21st century, Thomas Friedman suggested that it was.  He argued that massive advances in telecommunications and ten converging trends had “flattened” the world

Men your time is up!

I came across a very interesting and well written article in The Atlantic which examines the world in which women have now emerged as the majority workforce for the first time in US history. This is an incredible milestone and

The Silver Tsunami – managing older workers

One of the most important upcoming workforce trends is going to be companies’ ability to attract, retain, engage and effectively manage older workers. Multiple demographic trends are all pointing in this direction, and companies from many different industries would do

The rocket science of leadership

In the current series of Survivor one of the participants has the unenviable career description of being a ‘rocket scientist’. ‘No really’ must be something he is quite used to saying having had to repeatedly answer the stock question we