Leaders and Strategies in Real Life: 3/5/19

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Instead of studying leadership, why not spend some time studying leaders and strategies in the wild? You can learn a lot from leadership experts, but you always see the leader and what he or she does through the expert’s personal lens. Supplement that learning with studying real leaders in real life situations and draw your own conclusions. The posts in this series will help you.

Every week I’ll point you to articles by and about real leaders in real situations and to articles about how real companies are faring in the marketplace. Read them. Think about them. Draw your own lessons and conclusions from them. Then try to apply those lessons in your own real life.

This week I’m pointing you to articles about Diane von Furstenberg, Fred Engelfried, Grant Reid, Satya Nadella, and Jim Hackett.

From Jennifer Luna: Diane von Furstenberg: Find Your Door, and Push Through It

“The founder of the quintessential wrap dress talks about losing everything and building herself back up.”

From Fred Engelfried: Success Is Not Immune From Stress

“Early in my career, without quite knowing what it was but certainly how it felt, I stressed out frequently. When I would go to bed, it would be hard to fall asleep, my mind racing through frustrations of the day and often I would get up at 1 or 2 in the morning, have a major peanut butter sandwich, two or three cigarettes and then go back to bed. Sure didn’t help me snooze any better. Eventually I sought help from an industrial psychologist friend of mine. He taught me biofeedback and it worked like a charm. Unfortunately, we had treated a symptom and I was no smarter for the experience.”

From Michael McKinney: 3 Leadership Lessons from Mars, Inc.’s CEO Grant Reid

“Mars CEO and President Grant Reid believes in self-development and having a healthy curiosity in order to be agile and to stay relevant. As a privately owned business, while they have the freedom to stay aligned with their values, it still requires constant vigilance. Here are three lessons we can think about from Grant Reid’s interview with Bloomberg Businessweek Editor Joel Weber.”

From Simone Stolzoff: How do you turn around the culture of a 130,000-person company? Ask Satya Nadella

“A 5’11”, cricket-loving engineer from Hyderabad, India, Nadella had built a reputation as a mild-mannered manager who spent his free time taking online classes on neuroscience and reading poetry. The previous month, he had become CEO of the world’s fourth most valuable company, but the Microsoft he inherited was a far cry from the one he had joined in 1992.”

From Jerry Useem: Why Ford Hired a Furniture Maker as CEO

“In the car of the future, you may care more about how the driver’s seat swivels than how the engine purrs.”

For some ideas about how to get more from this series of posts, check out “Studying Leaders in the Wild.

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