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7 Event Management Lessons from the 2009 Presidential Inauguration

Posted on January 8, 2017 at 9:40 AM

On January 20, 2017, the city of Washington DC will host the most sacred ceremony in the US democracy - the peaceful transition of power from onepresident to another. The last transition in 2009 attracted an estimated 1.8 million spectators from around the country. At about 3x the population of the city of Washington DC, it was the largest crowd in DC history, and probably the largest in US history. Thr...

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How Rescuing Greyhounds Made Me a Better COO

Posted on December 11, 2016 at 9:55 AM


I adopted two retired racing greyhounds several years ago. Despite their fierce racing image, greyhounds are gentle-natured and don’t need much exercise. Their ability to sleep all day has earned them the nickname “40 mph couch potatoes.” Because of their careers as racers, however, they do require unique care to adjust to life in a home. That experience transitioning them to a ne...

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12 Best Practices of Elite Executive Assistants

Posted on November 19, 2016 at 8:30 AM



In my 20-plus year career from intern to COO, I’ve worked with dozens of executive assistants (EAs). They’ve all made me appreciate how important and difficult the EA job is. Here are the 12 best practices I learned from some exceptionally talented Executive Assistants I've been lucky to see in action.

 


I. Optimizing the calendar...

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Cutting Hospital Overtime by $3MM: A Consulting Case Study

Posted on October 20, 2016 at 11:25 AM


People often have a hard time understanding what I mean when I say I am a strategy consultant. The best way to describe the job can be by telling the story of one of my consulting projects.


My Hospital Client. One of the most rewarding engagements I’ve had as an independent management consultant w...

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8 Types of Leadership Your Team Needs from You

Posted on September 4, 2016 at 5:20 PM

We hear the phrase “think outside the box” a lot. If “the box” is something that is stifling creativity, it sounds like something to avoid. But when “the box” is a framework that smart leaders use to get better results from their teams, it is something to embrace.

 

In our new book Lead Ins...

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'Today', 'Tomorrow' and 'Twenty-Years' - 3 Goals Every Operating Plan Should Have

Posted on August 24, 2016 at 5:30 PM


Twenty-one years ago, student government at the University of Pennsylvania gave me my first formal leadership opportunity as head of the grad student government executive board. For our one-year term, we set three goals that represented one urgent need (the ‘Today Goal’;), one juicy opportunity (the ‘Tomorrow Goal’;), and one impossible dream (the ‘Twenty-Year Goal.’;)...

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8 Lessons from a Great Speech: Steve Jobs

Posted on July 23, 2016 at 11:45 AM


In 1997, Steve Jobs made his famous return to lead a floundering Apple and gave a speech to some employees to describe the turnaround plan. That 15-minute video is the best example of how to communicate strategy I have ever seen. Here are 8 keys to effective communication that he displays in that speech:

 

Be Insanely Prepared – Jobs did the whole speech without notes...

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7 Values I Learned By Walking the Camino Across Spain

Posted on June 24, 2016 at 5:50 PM


I recently walked the ancient Camino de Santiago pilgrimage trail across Spain. Every pilgrim (peregrino) has a passbook to get stamps along the way to prove they are doing the trail. My pilgrim passport hangs proudly on my wall and gives me something more than just memories: it lists 7 values each pilgrim should live by while on the trail. I've found these values useful for everyday, post-Camino life.

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5 Project Management Lessons from Ireland's Kerry Way Hiking Trail

Posted on May 12, 2016 at 11:20 AM


Last month, I checked off a bucket list item and hiked the Kerry Way trail on the southwest coast of Ireland. Beyond the enjoyment I got from the trail, it also taught me five big lessons that will help me better manage projects at work.

 

1. Don't Let Bad Forecasts Automatically Kill Plans – The weather in Ireland in March is typically bad for hiking but that was th...

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How Losing Star Performers Can Be An Asset

Posted on April 20, 2016 at 12:10 AM


Alex got recruited away from a management job with a small, fast-moving, progressive company to a larger, slower, more conservative company. His role was new, so he spent a lot of time in his first year recruiting a team. At the end of the year, he was pleased with the quality of the team he had built. His first annual performance review noted his ability to attract top talent too.

 

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