Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 4-ExtPost

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 Kinnear 1-On Leadership

All Year Long: Several things have converged to make me think a bit more seriously about recognition. First, of course, is that the year-end holidays are upon us. The holidays frequently make me take stock and appreciate my good fortune. Second is a holiday party I attended for one of our clients. A third event was a story that was related …

Meeting of the minds.

Language is Never Quite Right

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Words: What do you hear when I speak? I’m trying to paint a word picture of what I see in my mind so that you see “the same picture” in your mind. I share those words with you. We speak the same language. Let’s agree that the language, whatever it is, is native to both of us. But I have …

Modern Employees

Employees First

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Sustainable Advantage: I don’t know how we can claim we have a sustainable competitive advantage unless, that is, that we believe that advantage to be our ability to learn faster than the competition. Technology is moving much too fast for us to think that some sort of product or service is really our competitive advantage. But continuous learning, a willingness …

Black Belt

Warrior Spirit, Servant’s Heart

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Warrior: I think of warriors as people engaged in a struggle or conflict. For many people, the immediate image is often that of the military soldier at war. For me though, I think of the dedicated martial artists. Back in the early 1990’s, I wanted to find an activity that my son and I could enjoy together. Martial arts seemed …

The map is not the territory.

The Model Isn’t the Economy

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Maps, Models, and Filters: There’s an old admonition that “The map is NOT the territory.” I say (and I’m sure others before me have said), “The economic model is NOT the economy.” We all view the world through our mental filters. We can certainly get ourselves in trouble if we do too much visualization of the territory based on a …

Values Spheres

Differentiation and Values

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Values: I spend a fair amount of time discussing culture with executives and entrepreneurs. In my view, values underpin the culture in an organization. They are the foundation of decision making. And the decisions that get made define the culture of the organization. Yet many (most?) organizations do not pay significant attention to developing values that differentiate them from the …

Doubt and Learning

Doubt and Learning

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Embrace Doubt: Often, I will start out with a new client, project or endeavor with a considerable amount of conscious doubt. What makes me think I can do this? What makes me think I will be the best coach for this person? When will they find out I’m really an impostor? Frankly I can’t think of a time when I …

Championship Team

A Championship Team

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

According to John McGrath: “A championship team will always beat a team of champions.” A young entrepreneur I know put it this way, “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 if you watch the college teams you can easily tell the championship …

Mitigate Risk


Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Playing it Safe According to Bill Taylor, founding editor of FastCompany magazine, playing it safe may be the riskiest path of all for your organization. Safety can be a trap, in that you never move forward. Two activities in my past are sailing and rock climbing. When a storm approaches, large ships move out to sea away from the rocks …