Work is getting in the way of much-needed vacations, according to the latest executive survey by recruitment and HR consulting firm, Korn Ferry. Two-thirds (67%) of the more than 400 U.S. executives surveyed online earlier this month said they had postponed or cancelled vacation plans in the past year due to demands at work.
Purpose is possibly the most elevating force of organizational, team and individual performance. But as important and as expansive as it can be, it can be easily lost in hyperactive distractors and short-term financial pressure. However, it is precisely during these times when we should challenge leadership and pause to consider: “Has performance become our purpose, or is our purpose driving our performance to new heights?”
So what is this ‘transformative thing’ we call Purpose? Core Purpose appears to be activated at the high performance intersection of our distinguishing talents and our deepest-held values; it is our authenticity in-service to something larger…
While most of us whole-heartedly endorse character as critical to leadership, and most of us require it in the leaders we work for and seek out, few of us consciously seek to develop our own character. Despite this, I cannot recall a single leader asking, “Kevin, I have been struggling with my character. I think I need to do some work here.” We tend to complain about our eyesight and memory more than we criticize our own ethics and character…
In this article by Paul Laudicina, chairman emeritus of A.T. Kearney and chairman of its Global Business Policy Council, Laudicina provokes us to consider the challenge of leadership if “the ‘End of Power’ as we’ve known it has happened.” As Laudicina says, in order for leaders to convert ideas to action, they will need to be anchored in humility, openness, and authenticity, and they will need to integrate 3 forms of power—personal, contribution and relational.
In our work with leaders, no one has had a more profound influence than Warren Bennis. The breadth and depth of his legacy are too vast to represent here, but his core teachings are clear and foundational.
Think about it. When do you get your best ideas? To be truly productive, to optimize our capacities for creative solutions, innovations and transformative leadership capabilities, we need to pause to connect to values and purpose, then lead forward more powerfully.
With the recent death of Warren Bennis, “the father of leadership,” we have been reflecting on the significance of his passing and what he has “passed along” to all of us. In our work with leaders, if there is an influence that has touched us most profoundly, it is the work and presence of Warren Bennis. The five enduring lessons identified here can’t possibly capture the breadth and depth of his legacy, but they attempt to represent his foundational principles.
This new research study connects having a purpose in life to greater wellbeing and a longer lifespan.
Pause to Lead Forward: The Paradoxical Leadership Breakthrough — a manifesto written for ChangeThis.com
“The demanding pace for global leaders has never been more challenging. Digitally connected every moment, we are increasingly tied to a 24-hour global clock. This is the ‘new normal.’
We are expected to perform continually in the face of global crises and multifaceted pressures, including downsizing, mergers and the accompanying stresses and expectations. The list of demands, personal and professional, never ends. Could it be that going faster and driving harder are not the answers? Could there be another way to sustain high performance? Could it be that the source of our real value as leaders might come from different thinking and different choices rather than from perpetuation of the incessant pace we strain to maintain?”
The phrase nosce teipsum, know thyself, has been a classic theme throughout history. We discover it in the writings of great thinkers, such as Socrates, Ovid, Cicero, in the sayings of the Seven Sages of Greece, on the entrance to the Temple of Apollo, in early Christian writings, in Vedic literature, and in Taoist texts…