All posts in Grit

Uber Reveals the Perils of Grit Gone Wild

Set bold goals. Drive for results. Accelerate growth. Foster competition. Push people to excel. This is the ‘grit’ side of business success, and it’s become a favored playbook in the…

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Would It Kill You To Say “Thank You?”

It’s coming up on Thanksgiving.  So naturally, I’m thinking about gratitude as a leadership competency.  I’m thinking specifically about the grit-based leaders I know who hate saying thank you –…

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“Aggressive:” The ‘Scarlet A’ of the Workplace

Aggressive. Abrasive.  These “A” words have become the “scarlet letter” of organizational life, the mark of blame given to so many women who display grit in the workplace. Once that…

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Grit Gone Wild – How to Torpedo Your Brand In One Memo or Less

A client said to me once, “Really, Leslie, what does grace have to do with leadership? Does the heart really matter?” My answer is absolutely ‘yes,’ and Microsoft CEO Stephen Elop has…

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It’s (still) Not Easy Being ‘Grit’

Earlier this year, my partner and I interviewed 28 women leaders about their styles of influence and how those styles work – or don’t – in organizational life. (You can…

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Michelle Obama to Ellen Sturtz: Assertive or Aggressive?

From the Huffington Post today: “President Barack Obama may have a problem with confrontation, but First Lady Michelle Obama certainly does not. Ellen Sturtz, 56, a lesbian activist protesting President…

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Mountain or Spear? The difference between assertiveness and aggression

“The minute I express my opinion clearly, I get labeled as aggressive.”  This may be the most recurrent refrain I hear from the women leaders I coach.  They report that…

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“Self-promotion smells”

A very dignified woman once said to me, “Self-promotion smells.”  This is how many people, especially women, feel about self-promotion at work. Many believe that their competence should speak for…

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“Everybody is a genius. But, if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it’ll spend its whole life believing that it is stupid.” – Albert Einstein

Many of the ‘smartest’ executives I know have the greatest difficulty seeing the genius in the people around them.  I see this especially with grit-based leaders, who often suffer from what I…

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Escape the illusion of balance and the tyranny of multi-tasking

Here is an excellent article, written by a career coach, that dispels the myth of balance and urges you to use “focus” as a way to navigate the many demands…

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