I hate enforcing discipline on my team. I find it really unpleasant and I always wonder if I did the right thing afterward. I’m sure a lot of you feel the same way. When we avoid disciplining someone for engaging in misconduct, we set up a culture where respect doesn’t matter. The only thing worse than a leader who doesn’t discipline at all is one who does it arbitrarily and

Volunteers are becoming more and more common to help us reach our goals. In the Air Force, there were always community activities that wouldn’t have been possible without volunteers. Even in business, there are additional activities outside of people’s job descriptions that require volunteers. If you work for a non-profit or a community service organization, volunteers are probably doing most of your mission. These tips for leading volunteers will help

Giving feedback is hard, a lot of us have an aversion to it. Partly because we have had some bad experiences getting feedback ourselves, partly because we don’t like to give other bad news and almost certainly because we want people to like us. Giving feedback doesn’t have to be unpleasant. We can take a few steps to make a conscious effort to give effective feedback. These 5 tips for

In our last post, we talked about how managers can understand Millennials, as well as build strong working relationships with them. Working relationships and respect are a two-way street. This week we’ll talk about how to be a great follower and team player. This is important for everyone, no matter what generation. Whether you’re Millennial, Boomer or Gen X, these tips are going to help you be a great team player.

We’ve heard a lot about the “millennial problem” lately and there is no shortage of opinions on it. My first experience working with millennials was in the Air Force in the mid-2000s. That was a bit different situation than dealing with it in a civilian environment. Despite the differences, we found some successful leadership principles that can help with managing millennials in the civilian world too. One piece of general

People who are really driven often struggle to get rest and relaxation. This week I’m on spring break from my MBA program and really looking forward to it. I’ve planned a few fun activities for myself and friends. I also have a few things I’d like to accomplish for my business with the downtime. Like a lot of people with big goals, I sometimes forget that a break is about resting

Often, as leaders, we get wrapped up in day-to-day problems and leading our own team. We sometimes forget how important managing up is. We need to build strong relationships with our boss and our boss’s boss in order to lead effectively. Effective leaders do more than just manage their team. They build strong working relationships their leadership up the chain. Managing up isn’t just about getting the boss to accept

Following the chain of command can be slow and painful, but there are some advantages. When you understand the chain of command, you can use those experiences to improve your own leadership skills. While I was in the Air Force one of my assignments was rapid prototyping and testing of new capabilities. It was exciting and rewarding, but there was a lot of risk. We had to go through a

Often we feel like we could achieve more if we could just break through the barriers in front of us. A lot of times though we’re the ones placing those barriers. If you feel something is holding you back, you could be doing it to yourself. Here are three ways to overcome what’s holding you back. What’s Holding You Back – Fear of Failure One of the biggest things that

One of the reasons we wanted to become leaders was so that we could take on challenges we couldn’t achieve by ourselves. Employee motivation is a challenge for every leader. So how do we get our team members to do things that need to be done without being told? This week we’re answering a question from Pete. He says, “One thing I’m dealing with right now is trying to motivate