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Best-Practices Leadership

A leader in an organization can’t do everyone’s job. Instead of micromanaging, strong leaders use organizational leadership to coordinate, communicate, motivate and delegate among employees and team members. For comprehensive organizational effectiveness, each individual needs to be seen as a contributor, with the leader at the helm.

Most importantly, best-practices leadership involves keeping employees motivated throughout the process, adapting your scope or strategy as necessary, and developing an effective communication strategy.

Some people never make it to the other side because they’re more successful at being doers. This is a crucial point in determining if you’re going to move up the ranks.

Browse our articles, tools and advice on best-practices leadership.

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To launch a change campaign, start by assessing the present situation and then using it as a basis for crafting a better future. At least that’s what most experts would have advised a decade ago. The new strategy is to begin by envisioning the kind of future you want for your organization.
Many executives equate strategic planning with staging a “SWOT analysis”—an examination of their organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats. But recent research adds another element to the mix: an organization's culture.

Do you rely on your “golden gut” when making decisions? Or do you believe that other people in your organization have expertise or opinions that can help make your decisions better? Greg Burrill, owner and founder of home-builders WGB Homes, is in the second camp.

Peter Diamandis, who runs the X Prize Foundation, believes we’re on the cusp of a “world of abundance.” As he sees it, “abundance” is about creating a life of possibility. And he views the biggest, most foreboding topics­—water scarcity, climate change, population explosion—in terms of that possibility.

There’s new thinking about sponsorships. Consider how music inno­­vator Will.i.am is helping corporate America figure this out.

When Jeffrey Hayzlett took over as Kodak’s chief marketing officer, he didn’t know much about the founding father of the company, George Eastman. What he learned gradually, by raiding the archives and reading everything that Eastman had written, was that Eastman had been a change agent.

Smithfield Foods, a pork-packing plant, experienced the Great Recession like everyone else. “I thought the hole we were digging was so deep we should go into the swimming pool business,” says CEO Larry Pope. Here’s how Pope turned things around.
“Managing is work,” said Earl Weaver, legendary manager of the Baltimore Orioles baseball club, who died early this year, leaving behind some thoughts on leadership. “It’s constant decisions of whose feelings you want to hurt all the time.”
A few hours after you hear a presentation, ask yourself, “What do I remember?” If you recall anything, it will probably be a story. No matter how well a speaker serves up data, few listeners will remember it. But succinct stories lodge themselves in listeners’ brains.
Alan Wurtzel, who helped turn Circuit City into a great company, wanted to understand why it collapsed. Here's his assessment of its mistakes.
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