3Cs Leadership Circus

Many Leadership Development Programs Miss the Mark.

According to McKinsey Quarterly Article (Jan 2014) US companies alone spend almost $14 billion annually on leadership development.

Yet, only 7 percent of senior managers polled by a UK business school think that their companies develop global leaders effectively, and around 30 percent of US companies admit that they have failed to exploit their international business opportunities fully because they lack enough leaders with the right capabilities.

In our experience, companies often invest in or create leadership programs that are superficial in nature.  

Such programs focus on developing too many broad skills, and don’t reach deep enough to address barriers to effectiveness in the intra- and inter-personal domain.

By inadvertently branding programs as soft skill development, they are further discredited and let people off the hook to do the hard work, i.e. the much needed inner transformation!

For example, Jake, the lead character in our book Who Will Do What by When?, is clueless about his own integrity lapses and leadership blindspots.  His frustration about lapsed sales reaches the boiling point and he ends up yelling at his entire team.  While he doesn’t feel good about his repeated temper tantrums, he attributes them to his team’s underperformance.  When he finally begins to see his role as a leader of the team in creating mediocre results, he is ready to begin his transformation.  If you want to know how he turns himself and his team around, you can read the story.

To become an exceptional leader, people often have to strip away beliefs, look at their values, take on their inner gremlins and move through unproductive emotions that are in the way of change.  That process may be the hardest thing they ever do.  Why?  Because we are asking them to change or develop aspects of themselves they are not comfortable with or don’t even see.  It’s not easy to change a life-long habit or something you don’t see.  And it is even harder to identify the causes of a behavior you don’t see or have grown familiar with.

Bottom line: Change is hard.

And yet, we need leaders ready to be and deliver much needed change in the world.

Not only do we need them to transform their own game, we need them to develop other authentic and capable leaders who have big, honorable visions and the power to execute.

It takes many powerful leaders to change a culture and while each leader represents an important element of the culture change, culture change is based on the interaction between the leaders, specifically the energy between them.

We call that desired energy between leaders Organizational Harmony.

It doesn’t just happen.  It happens by design.

So, the game of leadership development is not just about skills, it’s also about energy.

Much like an athlete’s performance is mental, a corporate leaders’ performance is about his or her “vibe,” i.e. energy and presence.  A leader’s vibe precedes their physical presence, words and actions.

For example, if a leader lacks integrity, others will “feel” it.  They may not know how to say it but they will act consistent with their assessment that this particular leader can not be trusted.   Hence, they will not collaborate, pass on information, or include that person as they would with someone they trust.   They won’t even listen without their filter of the negative assessment they already have.

Any effective leadership program has to be designed to address the multiple layers and dimensions (intrinsic, extrinsic and systemic) needed to help leaders enhance:

  1. Attitude, perspective, leadership presence, and ability (intrinsic)
  2. Behavior, team performance, joint standards and capability (extrinsic)
  3. Cultural transformation, organizational processes, systems and strategy (systemic).

Our program is designed to do that.

1.We train and coach each individual to optimize his or her own leadership potential (intrinsic) and his/her impact on the performance of his/her team (extrinsic).

2.  We prepare and coach each leader to coach and develop other leaders through their embodied leadership practices (intrinsic) and hold other leaders accountable to coach and develop other leaders (extrinsic).  This produces immediate and future sustainable results as it presents a systematic way to make Succession Planning (system) part of a leader’s daily practice (systemic/extrinsic), not just a task leaders do when they are ready to retire or move on for other reasons.

The reason our program is so effective is:

We don’t lecture or talk at the participants.  It’s not about just learning new concepts or practicing new skills.

We are masterful at coaching (ICF Master Certified Coach) individuals in real time on relevant issues and situations.

Everything we do is based on proven adult learning principles and leverages what we science has learned about how the brain works.

By coaching we give leaders the opportunity to learn by doing.  Through practice and repetition they are learning an unfamiliar new way of engaging and leading.

Our 3C Leadership Circus program is designed to produce sustainable, measurable results you and your organization care about.

This leadership program reaches beneath the surface and leads to powerful transformation.  In order to change we must create a safe learning space for leaders to discover their opportunities and practice a new way.

The behaviors we see companies really need to develop are:

  1. Sound responsiveness and decision-making under pressure
  2. Ability to influence, collaborate with and hold accountable others outside of the reporting chain
  3. Courage to innovate and lead change in multiple dimensions (internal, external and systemic)

We believe less is more…

Over the past 15+ years we have discovered and refined three main core competencies fundamental to enhancing all areas of performance.  They empower leaders to create engagement, trust and accountability on their teams, develop other leaders and, simply put, create a culture of accountability and excellence.

They prepare individuals at their core to make sound decisions under pressure, influence and collaborate with others outside of the reporting chain and courageously innovate and implement change.

Our 3C Leadership Model has passed the test in all areas of business, including sales, project management, and operations.  Testimonials and case studies to see what clients say about us. 

The 3Cs stand for – Coaching, Commitment Management, and Composure.

While these three buzz words might not mean a whole lot to you yet, they will once you begin using our 3C system.

Let’s talk about Composure

You may have received well intended advice from people saying: “Compose yourself.”

What they mean is relax, stay open-minded, listen, don’t over react.  While they mean well and the advice sounds easy enough it’s actually not so easy to compose yourself under pressure.  If you have a fear of public speaking, it will take over the moment you even think about standing in front of a crowd.  Your knees start shaking, your mouth gets dry, your palms turn sweaty and your thoughts start racing like a freight train through your head – It’s no fun.

Yet, there are ways to practice composing yourself under pressure … 

We would like to introduce you to practices that will help you stay relaxed and open-mined under pressure so that you can make better decisions and perform to the best of your ability.  As a student of the somatic aspects of leadership, sports psychology principles, Qigong, Yoga, meditation and EFT (emotional freedom technique), I bring a wide variety of applicable experience in a domain that is less visible to most people.

Together we will figure out what practices will best serve you to perform at your best.

Let’s talk about Coaching

Why Would Successful Leaders Need Coaching Or Become More Effective Coaches?

The most obvious answer is that we all have blindspots, which limit our ability to see situations objectively and respond in ways that will bring about desired results.

A coach often plays the role of an observer who asks questions to help the person examine different perspectives and thus develop the ability to choose to respond rather than react by default.

Coaching thereby helps leaders enhance self awareness, explore new possibilities and generate actions plans.  It adds accountability to ensure that the promised actions actually happen and produce desired outcomes.

Aside from the focus on results, coaching also helps people enhance their relationships and connect in more meaningful ways with others.

That in return leads to higher levels in engagement, trust and commitment and results in measurable positive outcomes.

The benefit of coaching has no limits, however, not knowing how to coach will quickly limit you.

If you get a lot of resistance from your team, or mediocre results, we recommend deepening your coaching skills.

Everything you want is available by having  conversations with the right person, at the right time in the right way.

I personally use the coaching frame work for all kinds of conversations, including sales, fundraising, conflict management, goal setting, team meetings and basically any meeting in which I want to engage, influence or enroll others into my vision.

That said, my vision is to aim for the creation of win/win solutions, which is another possible outcome the coaching framework provides.  It’s really the ability to listen deeply to what others care about and help them and us close those gaps.


Let’s Talk about Commitment Management…

Commitment Management Sounds So Simple, Yet It Is Hard To Do Consistently.

Whenever I ask people what they think commitment management means, they tell me things like ‘accountability, communication, getting things done’ etc.

And it’s true- all those domains are positively affected by effective commitment management and yet managing commitments entails so much ore.
Commitment management is a language and predisposition in life that can be learned.  It’s a system, a step-by-step approach to eliciting and managing meaningful commitments for the sake of something we care about.In some cases learning to speak commitment language requires a whole new view of the world and vocabulary.
Getting on the road to commitment management is much like traveling to a foreign country – it’s exciting and perhaps a bit daunting at the same time.  As you ease into the paradigm of managing commitments instead of people, you will become free of hand-holding, scolding, repeating yourself and all kinds of other non-productive ways in which you tolerated (and/or created) mediocrity.  You will have time and energy to become more strategic,  apply yourself at  a higher level and have greater leadership impact.