Weekend Leadership Reading: 3/16/18

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Weekends are time when things slow down a little. Your weekend shouldn’t be two more regular work days. That’s a sure road to burnout. Take time to refresh yourself. Take time for something different. Take time for some of that reading you can’t find time for during the week.

Here are choice articles on hot leadership topics culled from the business schools, the business press and major consulting firms. This week there are articles about what most successful CEOs are really like, why mental health takes a village, working too much, beware mathematical models, and why women get paid less.

From Kim Rosenkoetter Powell and Elena Lytkina Botelho: What a study of 17,000 people revealed about the top business talent

“After all, the iconic CEO, the one admired in business media, is tall, white, male, and larger-than-life. He’s a bold, charismatic extrovert with a flawless résumé. A brilliant strategist with impeccable business judgment, jetting around the globe with superhuman confidence. He’s either a visionary prophet, à la Steve Jobs, or a hardened executive warrior, à la Jack Welch. This is a story we have been fed for decades. The good news is that most successful CEOs don’t look like what we expect to see.”

Thanks to Smartbrief on Leadership for pointing me to this story

Book Suggestion: The CEO Next Door: The 4 Behaviors That Transform Ordinary People into World-Class Leaders by Elena L. Botelho and Kim R. Powell

From Elizabeth Bernstein: Why Our Mental Health Takes a Village

“Research into ’emotionships’—the relationships we have with others that help us manage our moods—shows that we function best mentally when we create a village, or portfolio, of supportive people who have varied emotional skills. One person can’t help us with every mood, and not everyone is adept at handling every emotion.”

From Laura Empson: If You’re So Successful, Why Are You Still Working 70 Hours a Week?

“Through my research, I’ve heard stories like this over and over again from people in accounting firms, law firms, consulting firms, and other white-collar jobs. We all know that chronic overwork is bad for our mental and physical health and can seriously jeopardize the quality of our work. We wish we could change the way we work, but we don’t really know how.”

Book Suggestion: Leading Professionals: Power, Politics, and Prima Donnas by Laura Empson

From Eric D. Brown: Beware the Models

“Just because you build a model with better than average accuracy (or even one with great accuracy), there’s no telling what that model will do once it meets the real world. Sometimes, models just don’t work. Or…they stop working. Even worse, sometimes they work wonderfully for a little while only to fail miserably some time in the near future.”

From Dan Walter: Why Do You Pay Women Less?

“The data isn’t perfect but isn’t very disputable either. On average, businesses pay women less. Yes, for the same basic jobs at the same companies. Sometimes the problem is minor (Salesforce’s correction) and sometimes the issue is more pronounced (Barclay’s ‘Pays Females Half that of Males’). But, like bugs in your salad, even a tiny amount is probably beyond palatable. The question isn’t ‘is there a pay gap,’ the issue is why a pay gap exists.”

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