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  • by Liz Bywater - May 27, 2009
    I know what you may be thinking. SMART goals? What's the big deal about SMART goals? I mean, they aren't exactly front-page news. You've heard about SMART goals, written SMART goals, and advised others on the utility of setting SMART goals. Great. You're off to a good start. After all, the SMART approach to goal setting makes sense. When your goals are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-Based, you've got...
  • by Liz Bywater - April 6, 2009
    We live in extraordinary times. The economic, social, and political landscapes are in flux across the globe. Job security is on the decline. People are working harder than ever, taking on more responsibility, with fewer resources, and feeling tremendous pressure to perform. There has never been a greater need for exceptional leadership. Spotlight on Leadership will highlight the essential skills of outstanding leadersh...
  • by Liz Bywater - February 3, 2009
    Like millions of Americans - perhaps like you - I sat in front of the television on January 22nd, watching the inauguration of the 44th President of the United States. I listened with rapt attention to the speech of the new Commander in Chief, eagerly awaiting words of strength, direction, and hope. While the President's stage was grand and his audience vast, his task was that of every leader facing uncertain times - to co...
  • by Liz Bywater - December 2, 2008
    There's just no getting around it. Times are tough. The economy is in crisis, businesses are struggling, previously secure workers are now fearful of losing their jobs. The emotional impact can be great, leading to feelings of anxiety and depression - and a concomitant loss of focus and creativity. The potential effects on work performance consist of reduced productivity, innovation, and overall employee morale. Yet there...
  • by Liz Bywater - October 15, 2008
    From the White House to the boardroom, our nation has never been in greater need of strong, reliable, get-the-job-done leadership. Faced with a financial crisis of historic proportions, an increasingly heated presidential race, and a host of domestic and international uncertainties, now is the time for our best leaders to reveal themselves. But how are we to recognize strong leadership in trying times? To be sure, ther...
  • by Liz Bywater - September 15, 2008
    Stress: (noun) a state of mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or very demanding circumstances (e.g. he's under a lot of stress); something that causes such a state. Sound familiar? It should. The fact is, stress is ubiquitous. There's no avoiding it, eliminating it, or wishing it out of existence. Stress is a very real part of life. Its impact can be great and it must be dealt with accordingly....
  • by Liz Bywater - August 5, 2008
    Stress. It's a fact of life for today's busy executives, managers, and independent business owners. And that isn't entirely a bad thing. After all, without some degree of stress, we might not have the motivation needed for getting things done. No pressures, no deadlines, no real urgency to act. On the other hand, too much stress can dampen performance in a big way. When pressure mounts to excess, even moderate demands can...
  • by Liz Bywater - June 4, 2008
    While leafing through the New York Times last weekend, I came upon a disturbing article. Not surprising, I know. Today’s papers are filled with stories of death, destruction and general gloom and doom. This particular article was actually more subtle than all that. On some level, in fact, it was a tale of success. It was the story of a group of bright, motivated youngsters gearing up for college by taking advanced placement co...
  • by Liz Bywater - April 23, 2008
    Do not seek to follow in the footsteps of the men of old; seek what they sought. – Matsuo Basho, 17th C. Japanese poet When I was in the 7th grade, I wanted to be just like Lisa Piscatto. A classmate of mine, Lisa was popular, athletic and, it appeared to me, utterly at ease with herself. No small accomplishment at the tender age of 12. While I had my share of friends and was both musically and academically inclined, I...
  • by Liz Bywater - November 13, 2007
    One of the most common and frustrating impediments to worker productivity is conflict between employees. In any organization, unresolved conflict can strain relationships, create tension and negativity, fuel office gossip, and dampen morale. I'm not talking here of the kind of open debate that results in enhanced creativity, collaboration, and innovation. Rather, I'm referring to the sort of every day conflict that makes life...