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Taking the hard road

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When did taking the easy way out become the way to do business? Or to boost the economy, build communities, improve our schools, raise our kids and solve our problems? When did we decide that being a leader was a cushy job? Deep down, don’t you remember the thrill of taking the hard road? The… Continue Reading Taking the hard road

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“Look up in the sky — it’s a bird, it’s a plane, it’s….” a bright shiny object — the next program of the month designed to save the company from the perils of the market or the organization’s culture. Whether it is another restructuring, a performance improvement program, business process re-engineering, or the latest guru’s… Continue Reading Beware of bright shiny objects, or next projects

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When it comes to government and spending, two quotes from history capture the central problem. John Randolph, a Virginian and early 19th-century member of Congress, observed: “The most delicious of all privileges — spending other people’s money.” Calvin Coolidge, president from 1923-29, added: “Nothing is easier than spending the public money. It does not appear… Continue Reading So many federal programs, and so much duplication

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By Wendy Mack and Vinnie Garufi Imagine that your firm has just completed its first employee engagement survey. The results aren’t nearly as good as you would like. What would you do? You could sit in a conference room with other leaders and try to come up with action plans that will lead to improvements.… Continue Reading Real employee engagement means involving everyone

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How to deal with Fannie and Freddie?

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Since the credit meltdown hit in September 2008, a question has loomed: What to do with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? The Dodd-Frank financial regulatory bill that was signed into law by President Obama in July of last year was unprecedented for its intrusiveness into the marketplace. But it failed to deal with Fannie and… Continue Reading How to deal with Fannie and Freddie?

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Hiring new or replacement employees is not an easy or inexpensive task. Hiring for excellence is a fine art that Dr. Pierre Mornell calls “an incredibly expensive people-reading game.” And yet, in spite of the numerous pitfalls and complicated people-reading skills that hiring requires, most managers approach hiring far too casually. There is certainly no… Continue Reading Ten overlooked principles for hiring excellence

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Step up and lead change

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Across our city, our region and our country, leaders are in crisis. They — we — struggle with practical fiscal and policy issues while wrestling with deep, values-based questions: Who and what do I represent? What do we need to do and how do we need to behave as an organization? How do we survive… Continue Reading Step up and lead change

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Even as the global recession gradually recedes, our volatile economy makes change unavoidable for all of us. Whether it’s lingering high unemployment, rollercoaster financial markets or political turmoil, the landscape for leaders keeps shifting — and most of us are quite uncomfortable in it. That’s understandable. Change, after all, entails risk and conflict. It brings… Continue Reading How to avoid 4 mindsets that hurt your organization

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Employment data aren’t quite as opaque as the unemployment rate that we discussed last week, but there is still room for lots of confusion. Take the December data that were released for Colorado Springs a couple of weeks ago. We learned: Employment, at 275,400 jobs, was unchanged from November, but 4,500 jobs lower than December… Continue Reading Why the local jobs picture is so hard to figure out

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Much has been written about the 33 Chilean miners whose rescue from their underground prison of 70 days we all witnessed on TV. They were a truly inspiring team of ordinary workers who have much to teach us about how to lead in these trying times. Crises can unite us or destroy us. They can… Continue Reading Key lessons from Chile’s spectacular mine rescue

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