Yesterday I blogged about the decisions leaders must make. They are either like the decision to get an earring or a tattoo. Tattoos are permanent and must be handled with great care and forethought. Fortunately, most decisions we make as leaders are a bit more like getting an earring. Although you may pierce your ear, you can change out the earring or not wear it. Often, we take far too long and give too much effort to “earring” decisions and not enough on the “tattoo” decisions. [caption id="attachment_5513" align="aligncenter" width="569"]haircut photo credit: august allen via photo pin cc[/caption] Haircuts teach us another leadership principle. Haircuts are something that no matter how important or busy you are—you have to do them. Yourself. You can’t delegate them to your assistant. You can’t pass them off to a team. Haircuts are just one of those activities that you gotta do it yourself.  In the same way, leaders must remember, there are “haircuts” in their organization—priorities that only the leader can do. They may delegate most of the work to a team member, but leaders must know the things that they must do, and only they can do. 

Getting a tattoo is pretty much an irreversible act. So, you’d better think long and hard before you get one. When I see the millions of kids in Generation Y who now have one on their arm or leg or even face—I can only imagine what they’ll look like when those tattoos are sagging on a wrinkled eighty-year old body. The tattoo removal industry may be picking up in fifty years. But it will hurt. [caption id="attachment_5501" align="aligncenter" width="570"]medium_2063341523 photo credit: malloreigh via photo pin cc[/caption] For leaders, some of your decisions are like tattoos. They are permanent. We must be careful to not make them too quickly or in a knee-jerk sort of fashion. Consider this thought. Because you are a leader, you are likely a person of action. That’s why you got asked to be a leader. You are a doer. I believe however that the world is full of two kinds of people: the doers and the thinkers. The thinkers need to do more and the doers need to think more. Which one are you?(click to tweet). The good news is—just about every choice you make in your work doesn’t last forever.

I often write about how you can better mentor the students around you. I believe it’s the greatest need of the hour—kids need a guiding adult next to them. But what about you? I believe everyone needs a mentor, including mentors. For years I’ve practiced a customary ritual in January. I take a day away from the noise and clutter of

Today, I am announcing some changes. I hope you find them helpful. After reviewing the reading habits of our blog subscribers, our Growing Leaders team decided that my blogs should take on a slightly different flavor: Except for once a week, my blogs will be shorter and designed to be read more quickly. I will consistently share ideas, stories and solutions intended to

This story made me think. Last week in the Washington Post, Jessica Goldstein wrote an article about an 18-year-old young woman who is the consummate picture of a college-bound student. Her name is Noor Siddiqui. She just graduated from Robinson Secondary School in June, with a stellar grade point average. She was involved in extra-curricular activities and is very social.

Yesterday, I blogged about what real “work” accomplishes in young people, and how scarce it is, among teens and even twenty-somethings. They often prefer the virtual. I asked you to consider the landscape we now live in. Youth today are growing up in a SCENE that adults created. Sadly, it can be summarized with the word SCENE: S – Speed. (Slow is bad) C

Today I want to do something a little different. As the new school year launches, it’s so easy to get sucked into the rat race again. Vacations are over, and the hectic fall schedule begins soon. I was musing about this recently, bracing myself for a fast-paced August and September. I often find I “lose” myself during this busy season. I