How to Make Your Employee Evaluation Process Less Painful and More Valuable

“Everyone can’t be outstanding; therefore, employees should be evaluated such that they fit a normal distribution with some below average and some above average.” That’s the philosophy I was taught early in my leadership career. The general belief was that, while it wasn’t a perfect fit, ratings should resemble a bell shaped curve. Many companies still look at employees the same way, even suggesting that those who rank lowest on…

Leadership Lessons from the Political Follies

Politics provide an interesting show. Like a multi-act play, there are heroes and villains, plot twists and surprises. Everyone in the audience sees the show a little differently and when it’s all over, everyone applauds and returns to their normal lives, though some stay to watch the repeat performance which begins the next day. As the players take the stage for this quadrennial show, there are a few parts of…

The Respect Paradox

I’m always on the lookout for examples, both good and bad, of leadership in action. I was checking out at the grocery store the other day and a clerk had just opened a new register. As I started unloading my basket he told me that the overhead monitor seemed to be out of service but that he had called for a manager to come take a look at it. He’d still be…

Solving Leadership Challenges in a Global Virtual Team

This week’s guest blogger is a recent graduate of our Leadership Excellence Course in Indianapolis.  It is my pleasure to welcome Sewa Bhatt to these pages.  Sewa is an IT manager for a global pharmaceutical company.  She is a certified project management professional and leads a large diverse global team dedicated to furthering patient safety.  More projects are now using a geographically dispersed workforce and in many companies working with…

Don’t Raise Mushrooms

Shortly after arriving in the new organization, I asked why we were doing certain tasks that didn’t seem to make sense. This was my first job as an airplane mechanic. I was very young, impressionable and quite curious. So I was disappointed when another mechanic told me not to bother asking. He said we were like mushrooms: kept in the dark and fed, well, you get the picture. Was this…