A Higher-Level Leadership Framework & Inspiring Through Adversity

As one who sees leadership and spirituality as two sides of the same coin, I often refer to Deepak’s 7-Step Framework for LEADERS. Deepak describes a leader as “the symbolic soul of a group of consciousness.” He says that group consciousness could be a family, an organization, a community, a country or the whole world. He explains that the leader represents the longings, the aspirations, the deepest desires of the group, so in a sense, “the soul.” This is exactly why the CEO owns the culture of an organization, which is the organizational DNA.

Personal Development IS The Goal

Personal development is not a tool for reaching a bigger goal. Instead, becoming a “complete human being is already the biggest and most noble goal you can aspire to.” Most of us are on a quest of continuous self-improvement, with the goal of attaining greater success. “If I attend this school, if I obtain this certification, if I achieve this milestone, then I will be able to attain another level of achievement.” The personal development is often tied to a desired outcome that moves us from one level to another.

Making a Partnership Work

Businesses can’t grow without strategic partnerships. When thoughtfully selected, the right partner can enhance a company’s client base, capabilities, market presence, and overall brand. When selected poorly, the wrong partner can result in wasted time, energy, and resources, with nothing to show for your efforts, and can potentially harm your company or reputation.

Every Day is Independence Day for Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurship is as American as apple pie, baseball, and SpongeBob Squarepants. The essence behind entrepreneurship is the freedom to live a professional life that has the most meaning to you – to not be defined by someone else’s value system, personal vision & goals, and decisions. But with that freedom comes tremendous accountability, responsibility, and risk.

As SpongeBob and Patrick so eloquently discussed, entrepreneurship has unlimited possibilities. With entrepreneurship, we are limited only by our own vision (and money – but we can often find it if we look in the right places). However, entrepreneurship does bring its own pain and suffering with it, so to answer Patrick’s question, yes entrepreneurship can hurt at times.

Eight Lessons for Success (And Some Other Insights) by Barbara Corcoran

I had the privilege of speaking at the National Women Business Owners Corporation (NWBOC – www.nwboc.org) conference last week in Palm Beach, Florida. One of the highlights of the conference (where 200 women business owners came together to learn, share, and connect) was keynote Barbara Corcoran. Barbara is one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the country. She took a $1,000 loan to start her real estate company, The Corcoran Group, which she grew into a $5 billion business. She sold the firm for $66 million in 2001.

Barbara is also a host and investor on ABC’s Shark Tank. During the last three seasons, she has bought 11 new businesses. She is also the author of three best-selling books, and is a regular small business and real estate contributor on all of the major networks.

Like all great entrepreneurs, Barbara’s journey to success has been filled with wonderful lessons. I have summarized them here for you.

Rejected by TED… No Problem! “No” Means “Not Yet”

February was a month of wins – and losses. Everyone talks about their wins, so I’m going to move right past those, and get to the topic that that leaders rarely glorify: the losses.

I was rejected in February by TED. TED stands for Technology, Engineering and Design. There are TED events all over the world that feature speakers that have ideas worth spreading. The TED website (www.ted.com) is my all-time favorite site because it opens our minds to so many ways of thinking about things we’ve never even thought about! It spotlights our greatest potential in any topic you can imagine.

Recognizing the Positive Leadership of Carnival Cruise Lines CEO Gerry Cahill

The disaster of the failed Carnival Triumph cruise ship has captivated all of us over the last week.

As a frequent cruiser who has cruised Carnival and other lines, I cringed upon seeing the pictures and videos of the squalor and disgusting conditions aboard ship. I sympathized with the passengers who entrusted their safety to Carnival, yet found themselves living a week-long, potentially life-endangering nightmare. Throughout the course of the week, I kept asking myself how well I would cope with being trapped on board with my family.

Fortunately, the nightmare has ended, now that the ship has docked in Mobile Alabama, with all passengers and crew members safe (albeit hungry and dirty).

Throughout this disaster, I’ve been watching how CEO Gerry Cahill has conducted himself. Personally, I think he has done an exceptional job – especially compared to Former BP CEO Tony Hayward during the 2010 oil spill disaster that claimed 11 lives and has spewed 100 million gallons of toxic oil into the Gulf of Mexico. – and here’s why:

Five Ways To Make The Most of Your Holiday Downtime

How we can make the most of our holiday downtime – you know those pockets of time when office productivity is low, laziness is high, and we’re all pressing the reset button to move into the new year? I came across an article by Kevin Daum (http://www.kevindaum.com), a best-selling author, Inc columnist, Inc 500 entrepreneur, and fellow Entrepreneurs Organization (http://www.eonetwork.org) member that answered this question.

I’ve taken 2 of his suggestions and mixed them with 3 of mine. Whether you’re the reflective, spiritual, meditative type, the hyper-focused Type-A type, or somewhere in between, there should be something for everyone on this list.

It is time to activate your most joyful life.

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