United Airlines and the Firestorm of Social Media

Is Your Organization Ready for Online Criticism?

For a Christian leader, the recent blow-up at United Airlines should be a teaching moment on the power of social media. You no doubt heard the story about an overbooked flight, and the passenger (who had paid for his ticket and was already seated on the plane) who was physically ejected for another passenger. Right or wrong, the incident was recorded on video and it quickly became the top story in the media. By the next morning, the social media memes had been launched:

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Disasters Rarely Happen Because of One Big Mistake

It's Usually the Trail of Little Ones...

When problems happen, we often look back for one big mistake – one poor decision as the culprit.  But the truth is, most problems don’t happen because of a big mistake, more often it’s a trail of small ones.  A few years ago, theatrical producer Peter Schneider, writing about all the problems the Broadway production of “Spiderman” experienced, quoted writer Jon Krakauer on the subject of big disasters:

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When Employees Control Organizations From the Bottom

The Tragedy of Leadership Turned Upside Down

Have you ever worked for an organization who had a low level employee in charge? Certainly not by title, but through his or her behavior, they virtually ran the organization. Here’s one I encountered a few years ago: An employee at a large Christian ministry was responsible for scheduling outreaches, volunteers, and equipment. The employee wasn’t a department head or on the leadership team in any way. However, the employee

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Leaders: Don’t Let The Insignificant Drag You Down

When Details Destroy

I once worked with a CEO that was obsessed with the most mundane details at his company. He led a team of more than 4,000, and yet he actually supervised the writing of the payroll checks. He studied the company’s social media posts – not for their effectiveness – but he personally wanted to deal with any critics of the company. He wanted to be in low level meetings that in my opinion were a total

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Building Your Brand: How to Develop a Business When Working from Home

One of the most frequent questions people ask me is whether or not they should leave a full time position and become a freelancer. Every situation is different, and no matter how much you may hate working for someone else, working from home has its own challenges. So I asked my friend and freelance writer Jenny Holt for her advice. It’s worth noting if you’re thinking about launching out on your own:

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Why Leaders Are Encouragers

The Inspirational Power of Thanks

There’s plenty of books, websites, and leadership resources that talk about the importance of encouragement. As Goethe said in 1768, “Instruction does much, but encouragement everything.” So rather than say more about why you need to be an encourager, let me give you a brief but powerful example of something I personally experienced:

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Are People Honoring You, Or Who You Represent?

Why It's Important To Know The Difference

A few years ago, I noticed something really interesting at a major Christian ministry.  It was a very respected organization, and the founder/leader was widely admired and had enormous integrity.  As a result of the leader’s long track record of excellence and earned respect, several of his executives in the organization (as his representatives,) were treated very respectfully by outsiders. So respectfully in fact, that their pride started getting them confused.  Some of them lost sight that the reason for all that respect was the founder, not them. But ego being what it is,

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Why You Should Find a Good Mentor

In many ways, the most important advantage a person has in the workplace are relationships.  In the past, “networking” was about taking advantage – what other people can do for me.  But today, networking is about helping other people because it’s the right thing to do.  Whether you believe in God, Karma, or random chance, the truth is, when you help others achieve their dreams, they can help you achieve yours.  But when it comes to the mentors and allies you have at work, here some important principles to remember:

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