Mentor and Coach

Coach Only the Coachable

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Smartest Person in the Room: Carol Dweck discusses “Fixed Mindset” versus “Growth Mindset” in her book Mindset: the new psychology of success. I find her definitions and description of the people who have one or the other mindset to be very useful in my professional and personal life. As usual, things with human beings are complicated. Most of us have …


Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Vacation: How about starting the next meeting of your leadership team with a personal check-in? Take a few minutes at the start of the session for each member to report on the last trip or vacation that person made. Getting to know each other personally, not just professionally, is an excellent way to grow trust. Building trust with a group …


Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Perception: Recently, a young person who I’m mentoring got onto a tirade about his boss micromanaging him. After he calmed down a bit, I asked him to give me some details. (For confidentiality reasons, I will obscure the real information, but the “story” is otherwise true.) It seems that his boss would frequently delegate a task to this young man …

A Learning Model

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Aware Then Unaware: Years ago, when I was studying martial arts, I became aware of a learning model. I’m pretty sure many, perhaps most, of you are also aware of that model. It goes like this: In the beginning, you aren’t aware of how difficult a task might be. In the Dojo, the Sensei makes things look easy. But then, …

Championship Team

A Championship Team

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

According to an Adelaide newspaper in Australia: “A championship team will always beat a team of champions.” A young entrepreneur I know said, “I would much rather play on a championship team than on a team of champions.” His sport in college was basketball. He pointed out that you can easily tell the championship team if you watch the college …

Employee Training

Industry Experience

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Catch 22? Have you noticed that many job postings lay out a list of skills and also require, say, five years of industry experience? Ever wonder how the heck a college graduate manages to get hired? Do you assume they worked their way through school? Or perhaps you look for a valuable and long internship program that provided relevant experience? So …


Weakness vs Strength

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

What’s Your Focus? In my profession (Executive Coaching), there is a lot of discussion around whether one should focus on strengths or on weaknesses. I have tossed this topic around myself and concluded that we should be aware of any weakness, but focus on our strengths. However, a recent podcast brought me up short and caused me to re-think this …

Hope is not a strategy but it is a requirement.

Leaders of Hope

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

The Swamp of Innovation It’s hard to remember that our task is to drain the swamp when the alligators of failure keep taking bites out of our hope and persistence. We all know the story of Edison and his 10,000 tries to find the right construction for the light bulb enclosure and filament. How does someone keep going in the …

Confident Leader

Leaders and Self-Worth

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

Attitude Self-esteem and self-worth are a matter of attitude about one’s value to loved ones and the community. If a person also has a strong sense of humility to go along with healthy self-worth, then the stage is set for a very effective leader. Confidence, self-esteem and humility combine to make space for a growth-minded person (to use Carol Dweck’s …


IPNB and Leadership

Dave Kinnear1-On Leadership

IPNB Interpersonal Neurobiology (IPNB) is an interdisciplinary attempt to unify all branches of science to define what the human “mind” actually is. The science disciplines involved include Anthropology, Biology (developmental, evolution, genetics, zoology), Cognitive Science, Computer Science, Developmental Psychopathology, Linguistics, Neuroscience (affective, cognitive, developmental, social), Mathematics, Mental Health, Physics, Psychiatry, Psychology (cognitive, developmental, evolutionary, experimental, of religion, social, attachment theory, …