Alaska Indigenous Artifacts

Tribal Animals

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Nature Rules: There is a lot of discussion about organizational culture these days. What is it? How does it contribute to or inhibit effectiveness? How do we “manage” it? I define culture as simply “the way things get done around here.” And that means how decisions are made. That includes whether employees feel that the environment is safe for them …


Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA)

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 4-ExtPost

It’s In Our DNA! How often have we heard that statement? Personally, I hear it quite frequently. Often, it’s used as a way of excusing a person’s actions: “I can’t help it, it’s in my DNA.” I also hear it used as an indictment of another person who is reluctant try something new. Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA), a self-replicating material present …

Chef's Creation

A Wide Variety of Tastes

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 3-LI

The Chef’s Creation Variety is frequently a positive goal to achieve when doing things such as organizing your life, building an organization, creating a mastermind group, or developing a high functioning team. However, sometimes, we can miss the mark. We can overdo things. I started thinking about this when my wife made a comment while we were out to dinner …

Angry Tennis Match

Parallel Universes and Leadership

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Three Parallel Universes: I’m speaking of Organizations (including businesses), Personal Lives, and the Public Square. There seem to be many parallels in those three universes. Of course, this should not be surprising since each comprises individuals from the subspecies Homo sapiens sapiens. Public Square Now, I have no intention of turning this into a political post, so let me get …

Leadership, Epistemic Arrogance, and Knowledge

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Epistemic Arrogance: I mentioned, in a previous post, that I liked the phrase coined by Nassim Nicholas Taleb (NNT), “epistemic arrogance.” I will avoid trying to expand on the meaning of the words but instead will refer you to NNT’s book. Suffice it to say that many studies show that we humans are far too confident in what we believe …

The Black Box

The Black Box

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 3-LI

Puzzle Eons ago, when I was in engineering school, we had an exercise known as “The Black Box.” The idea is simple; the challenge wasn’t always so simple. Inside the box, hidden from our view, was an electronic circuit. There were two variations, a paper exercise where the instructor gave us the input and output waveforms, and we had to …


Leadership and Conformity

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

Holacracy: I’ve been noticing quite a few articles on the Holacracy movement.  As always, some are well balanced and researched, and others take sides with little research and lots of opinions. Right now, for me, I’m more interested in the results being achieved by those brave enough to experiment with this new organizational concept. Perhaps the most talked-about implementation is …


Leadership and Craftsmanship

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 3-LI

Real World: Fresh out of engineering school and excited to begin my new job, I enthusiastically started work on test equipment design for a digital fuel-control. One of the more memorable experiences was working with the technician assigned to our team. He was (is?) a true craftsman. He built the circuit-boards we designed in a neat, logical, and efficient manner. …

And Progress Stops

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership, 3-LI

Progress Thomas Watson, Jr. once observed, “Whenever an individual or a business decides that success has been attained, progress stops.” That rings true to me. I think that’s why vision statements are so important. Visions are larger than missions, and while the mission may be “achieved,” the vision is usually pretty far out there. It is an end to be always …


Slightly More Than A Business

Dave Kinnear 1-On Leadership

There are a lot of words spoken, ink spilled and brain cycles expended on the concept of culture in a business. The topic is important because, as we all know, culture trumps procedures every time. It doesn’t matter what the Policy and Procedure manuals say, people do what is expected by and acceptable in the culture. Recently, I came across …