Managing Paradoxes in Leadership with Competing Values Framework

Many have debated on the differences between a leader and a manager (Yukl 2010). . Some suggest that one can’t be both at the same time, whereas others simply view them as different roles that may be executed by the same person. I’m inclined toward the latter, because that’s what my clients seem to be telling…

Put Off Till Tomorrow What You Cannot Do Today

Thomas Jefferson once said “Never put off till tomorrow what you can do today”. That is a great principle to keep to in general. But once a a while i find myself getting better results when i put off till tomorrow what i cannot do today. Here are three reasons why i put off some…

Determining Competitive Advantage With Sun Tzu’s Seven Considerations

Sun Tzu emphasized the importance of calculations (算) for winning wars. To him, success is straightforward. The more one calculates, the better chance one will win. The calculations are based on seven areas: (1) Which of the two sovereigns is imbued with the Moral law? (2) Which of the two generals has most ability? (3)…

The Test of Sun Tzu’s Art of War On Concubines

The following is a short biography of Sun Tzu written by Sima Qian, one of the famous historians of China. While it’s authenticity has been debated, it serves as a great story on leadership. ______________________________________________________________________________________ Sun Tzu Wu was a native of the Ch`i State. His ART OF WAR brought him to the notice of He Lu,…

Sun Tzu’s Five Characteristics of Leaders

Many have written about Sun Tzu’s Art of War for business strategies and some even go beyond to apply these strategies to parenting, education and others. The Art of War was originally written more than two thousand five hundred years ago for the purpose of winning wars. While i am not sure if the concepts…

What Are Your Tea Ladies Saying About Your Leaders?

“A great man shows his greatness by the way he treats little men.” – Thomas Carlyle In a book written by James E. Amos, who was the valet for US President Theodore Roosevelt, it revealed how the President treated his servants. In the book, Amos wrote: My wife one time asked the President about a…

Shut Down Your IT!

We’ve talked here about the damage caused to productivity by constant interruptions, such as reading e-mail, answering the phone and checking out a Web site (like you’re doing right now). In short, when your attention is diverted from a task, it takes time for you to get your mind back in the flow of what…

Why Good Spreadsheets Make Bad Strategies

We live in a world obsessed with science, preoccupied with predictability and control, and enraptured with quantitative analysis. Economic forecasters crank out precision predictions of economic growth with their massive econometric models. CEOs give to-the-penny guidance to capital markets on next quarter’s predicted earnings. We live by adages like: “Show me the numbers” and truisms…

Yahoo’s Turnaround Efforts Straight from Steve Jobs’ Playbook

Carol Bartz, the still new CEO of Yahoo, convened her first meeting for Wall Street analysts a few weeks ago. Forget the specifics for a moment. She could have been talking about another iconic Silicon Valley company that had gone astray under experienced but ineffectual leaders who had been brought in from other industries to…

Six Social Media Trends for 2010

In 2009 we saw exponential growth of social media. According to Nielsen Online, Twitter alone grew 1,382% year-over-year in February, registering a total of just more than 7 million unique visitors in the US for the month. Meanwhile, Facebook continued to outpace MySpace. So what could social media look like in 2010? In 2010, social…

Leadership Research on Singapore SMEs (Services)

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are the backbone of Singapore’s economy, contributing 47% of the country’s GDP and generating 62% of available jobs. According to official records, there are about 126,000 SMEs in Singapore and most of the owners are so preoccupied in their daily operations to think of anything else. Many of them face…