Courageous Teams

Courageous TeamsWe recently took a look at the collective courage or cowardice of a team. And we noted that much of the collective courage of a team is drawn from the leader. But we would be incorrect in assuming that courage is inbred. It is a developed over time and through withstanding hardship and challenges.

Unfortunately, many brave leaders convey the impression that this is how they’ve always been. Whether or not they were born brave, bravery seems to come naturally to them. Even if it does not, it appears to be so.

For teams it is no different. Teams, like individuals, have to learn to be brave and to stand strong in tough times. It is imperative that they can communicate with each other about what this developing shared bravery looks like.  And the courage must be communicated in terms of what it looks like within the context of that team’s experience.

What is the leadership principle here? Continue reading “Courageous Teams”

Leadership Lesson from Pope Francis

Pope FrancisI do not pretend to understand the ins and outs of the Catholic church.  But I can recognize leadership when I see it.  We have touched on this before.  But one of the traits of a good leader is that they are humble and comfortable in their own skin.

It is very early in the papacy of Pope Francis.  But consider one of his first actions as Pope once the immediate pomp and ceremony was over. He rode the bus with his former fellow Cardinals back to the hotel.  He packed his own luggage and paid his own bill.  Could he have dispatched someone from the vast Vatican staff to handle that task?  Of course he could.  Would he have been well within his rights and within the bounds of acceptable behavior to have dispatched someone?  Of course he would.  Does he set an example of humble leadership?  I think he does.

I am not Catholic, but if this Pope leads in the days to come as he has in his early days, he may help the Catholic church recover from some dark days in recent years.


Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images.

Collective Courage or Cowardice

Collective Cowardice or CourageWhen you list adjectives that describe a leader, what words would be on that list?

For many of us, words like strong, determined and courageous would probably be near the top of the list, don’t you think? We like our leaders to be brave and strong and determined. Everyone loves a heroic character.

When you list adjectives that describe a highly functioning and successful team, what words would be on that list?

Are they the same sounding words? Continue reading “Collective Courage or Cowardice”

Where have all the leaders gone?

Where have all the leaders goneI “feel” (and we know how dangerous it is to operate on feelings) that there are fewer leaders now than in days gone by. It may or may not be so. But it seems that is the case. Leaders must be a lot like heroes. I wonder where all of them have gone as well.

One of the characteristics that define a leader is that they are growing and developing leaders around them.

So, what is the point and the leadership principle here? Continue reading “Where have all the leaders gone?”