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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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On April 4, 1968, presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy stepped to the microphone in a poor neighborhood in Indianapolis and stunned the crowd with the news that the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. had been shot and killed. The sheriff had tried to persuade Kennedy to cancel his appearance, saying it was too dangerous to address an African-American crowd. Kennedy refused.

Richard Nixon suffered the stigma of being the only U.S. president forced to resign, and his leadership suffered greatly under the weight of Watergate. But the disgraced president did fire off one flare of good leadership as his administration crashed. Ironically, it ensured the end of his presidency.

Learn how to counsel, regroup and gain strength from each other after a trying event.
You have heard all the general advice and theories about getting “a seat at the table.” But what does it take to jump the fence from your administrative role and be seen as a true leader in the company? The HR Specialist newsletter posed the following question to three of the leading HR thought leaders in America today: “What makes an HR professional an indispensable leader in an organization?” Their answers pointed to the following 5 actions:
Before you act, think through how your leadership in one sphere will translate into leadership in another. Consider the case of British diplomat Roger Casement, who documented the rubber industry’s cruelty to indigenous people in the Congo and Amazon and was knighted in 1911. But five years later, the British hanged him for conspiring with the Germans on behalf of Irish independence.

One day at about 2 p.m., David Silverman had an “Aha!” moment. He and his two-person staff hadn’t eaten lunch yet. Silverman didn’t care about lunch. He was focused on their project, which for the first time felt like his project. For the first time, Silverman felt like an executive. In truth, however, he had taken only the first step toward leadership: ownership.

An IT technician for the city of Philadelphia spotted an opportunity when she discovered 28 city cell phones that were going unused. She rented them out to friends, family members and eight city employees. The beneficiaries of her entrepreneurship then racked up more than $30,000 worth of phone calls and texts ... She agreed to plead guilty to third-degree felony theft, obstruction and misuse of public property.
An Oscar-winning director whose films bring in billions, James Cameron is known for exacting top performances from talent. Among his rules for leading: Motivate with a sense of exploration. For Cameron, innovation is a tool for uniting his team. “We’re doing extraordinary things that outsiders would not even understand,” he says.

The oil spill that has threatened both the sea life and the economy in the Gulf Coast illustrates two major flaws in the leadership of British Petroleum CEO Tony Hayward: He allowed the company to run ahead of the technology available, and he blindly trusted outsourcing.

Steve Cody, a public relations consultant who blogs as The Repman, says he’s learned four things about good communication from practicing stand-up comedy: 1. Courage builds courage. 2. Timing is (almost) everything. 3. It’s not just what you say, but how. 4. Humor works like a magnet.

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