As president of Growing Leaders, I am consistently digging up research or hosting focus groups with both adults (parents, faculty, coaches, employers) and with students. Recently, I assembled the following list of six big concerns that university students expressed to me, about their life and career. They furnish us with a peek into their hearts and minds—and inform us as we lead them.
Sometimes I forget to do the fundamentals. Here’s one I’ve lost sight of recently: it’s the power of encouragement. As a leader, I’ve learned I can never underestimate the power of encouragement. It’s not a luxury. Team members need it. It has been said that encouragement is the oxygen of the soul. Years ago, an ordinary teacher proved just that. Sister
If you lead young people today, you already know they value creativity. In general, Generation Y (the students born since 1980) and especially Generation iY (the students born since 1990) are creative individuals, and they love environments that allow them to utilize their ingenuity. In addition, they also love connection. They love to stay connected socially (to friends) and technologically (to
As I reflect today, it takes me back in my memory—to a flight I was on two years ago. I was traveling over a weekend, this time to Washington DC. The flights get old, but this one is different. The whole atmosphere had morphed. As I looked around me, I saw dozens of elderly men in t-shirts, smiling and laughing and
In past blogs, I’ve suggested that just like muscles shrink—or atrophy—when they’ve been in a cast for weeks, our culture has created a world where we don’t have to exercise certain emotional, social, intellectual or spiritual muscles we used to need in the past. People skills and virtues were more prevalent in the past because people needed them to make
Today's post is a guest blog from Mark Miller, Vice President for Organizational Effectiveness at Chick-fil-A and author of The Secret of Teams and Great Leaders Grow : Becoming a Leader for Life. I’ve been fascinated by teams most of my life. I guess it started when I was about 6 years old. It was in the days before tee ball
Yesterday, I blogged about one of the greatest frustrations for leaders: meetings. I suggested ideas on how to make them more effective. Today, let’s look at another angle. Often the purpose of a meeting is purely planning. The entire time is spent thinking about an event or idea in the future, so that you can execute it well.
A survey was given to executive level leaders. They were asked: What subject would you like to read a book about? Two-thirds of them replied: A book about how to work with boards, teams and committees. Let’s face it. Most of us have never been trained on how to lead a productive meeting or how to get the most our of
A few months ago, I put out a request for readers to share stories of practical ways we can prepare students for adulthood. I was finishing up the manuscript for my new book, Artifical Maturity (set for release in June!), and wanted to include real-life examples from people around the world. The response was absolutely overwhelming! I’m so thankful for everyone who took time to share ideas. There were so many more than could be included in one chapter of a book. But I wanted everyone to hear these great ideas. So here’s the plan: over the course of next year, I’ll share a story that someone submitted. I hope you find them as challenging and helpful as I did! Here’s this week’s story:
Imagine it’s 1995 again. Two digital encyclopedias are about to be created. The first is from Microsoft, a stellar company full of smart people and money. They are on top of the world, as they have just launched Windows 95. Their digital encyclopedia will be sold on CD-ROMs and later online. Everyone expects this product to be a hit. The second
Yesterday I started a series on the purpose of school. I introduced a new book to you that will be released in June. I’ve been working on the manuscript for two years, in an attempt to provide solutions for leaders who work with students. The book is called, Artificial Maturity—Meeting the Challenge of Helping Kids Become Authentic Adults. Today, I’d like to do a second part to my blog on one section of the book. We will call it:
What’s the Purpose of School?Over the years, our school system has changed. It moved from a very personal, one-room schoolhouse to an industrialized system today, where we crank out compliant, satisfied, homogenized people who are eager consumers. That’s precisely what the industrial revolution needed from future factory workers. The trouble is—I am not so sure that’s what we need today.
I’m excited to introduce a new book to you. It will be released in June. I have been working on the manuscript for two years, in an attempt to provide solutions for leaders who work with students. The book is called, Artificial Maturity—Meeting the Challenge of Helping Kids Become Authentic Adults. Let me give you a taste of one of the topics I wrestle with in the book. Have you every asked yourself the question:
What’s the purpose of school?It’s a question our kids ask all the time! I’ve been digging to discover a serious answer to that question, and my findings have been eye-opening.
I have concluded that what defines a leader today is not so much their ability to say “yes”, but their ability to say “no.” Learning how to say no can be life-changing. It’s possessing the skill to sniff out what fits into your wheelhouse and what would be a distraction. Let’s face it. America is the land of opportunity and today, we’ve created more opportunities that ever. Most leaders can’t handle it. The most accurate words to describe our lives today are:
A few months ago, I put out a request for readers to share stories of practical ways we can prepare students for adulthood. I was finishing up the manuscript for my new book, Artifical Maturity (set for release in June!), and wanted to include real-life examples from people around the world. The response was absolutely overwhelming! I’m so thankful for everyone
Last month, I was able to spend time at spring training providing leadership coaching for several major league baseball teams. These teams are incredible examples of organizations who want to not only develop great ballplayers but also great leaders. I had the opportunity to interview Dayton Moore, General Manager of the Kansas City Royals and asked him to share a
Last month, I spoke at a Chick-fil-A event for team leaders in their restaurants. It was a gathering of several hundred young general managers, managers and team leaders of restaurants all over the Southeast. The theme was: “Game Changer.” We talked about the fact that there are leaders—and then there are leaders who are “game changers.” They are the ones who don’t merely occupy the role up front, but they actually transform the way people approach what they do. They change the industry. Nobody is the same after they’ve led.
launch will stall. Employers scaled back hiring again last month according to the Dept of Labor. The hardest hit are the youngest workers. By the end of 2011, only about half of the 18-24 years olds in America were working. This is the lowest number since the government began collecting data back in 1948. So, how do smart graduates launch in an economy like this?
Another school year is ending—but many kids didn’t graduate from high school or college. Almost one third of teens don’t finish high school, and most who start college don't finish. They are stalling, and it is affecting families. I had to chuckle when comedian Zach Galifianakas described his character in a recent movie: “I’m a stay at home son.” This
A few months ago, I put out a request for readers to share stories of practical ways we can prepare students for adulthood. I was finishing up the manuscript for my new book, Artifical Maturity (set for release in June!), and wanted to include real-life examples from people around the world. The response was absolutely overwhelming! I’m so thankful for everyone who
One of our Growing Leaders speakers is Michael Hirsch. In addition to helping us equip staff and students, he serves as Executive Director of Loveworks. I asked him to do a guest blog to let you see how he and his team are transforming young at-risk teens into leaders in Norman, Oklahoma. Enjoy his words below.It’s a Thursday afternoon with over 100 students and volunteer leaders bustling about the Afterschool Leadership Program. Two volunteers high-five in the hallway as one shouts “There’s never a dull moment at Loveworks!” This has quickly become a mantra between dozens of the volunteers who gather three days a week to mentor at-risk middle school students.
Every year, I publish my "Top 10 Books of the Year". Almost everywhere I go, people ask me the question: how do you read so many books? Where do you find the time? And…can you tell me how to read a book? Do you read it from cover to cover?In 1987, while I was finishing my Masters degree, a faculty member shared with me how he reads a book and saves time. I so appreciated his ideas that I began using them and later formed my own steps. Below is a list of tips I share with people about how to read a book.
Every year, I am in front of between 50,000 and 60,000 students, staff and parents, talking about this Millennial generation: who they are and what adults can do to mentor them well. It’s always makes for a lively question and answer time!One question seems to come up everywhere. What is happening around the world? In other words, are there any international trends we can spot that let us know what is coming in this Millennial generation of kids? I must confess, I certainly don’t have the final answer to this question, but let me share two sobering facts that ignite me to work even harder to provide a moral compass for students today.