Archive for June, 2013

Leadership Practices for Challenging Times: principles, skills & practices that work

Steve Zuieback
Publisher: Synectics LLC
Paperback, 320 pages, $49.95

This is a wonderful resource for leaders, consultants and coaches engaged in creating high functioning teams, change management and sustainability. This book guides practitioners in the steps to create conditions within organizations where individuals and teams feel empowered to do great and creative things everyday for their clients, colleagues, organizations and communities.

The book is designed to provide the inspiration, theories and practices that enables people to diagnose, design and implement effective strategies that can transform working environments and whole organizations. Significant attention is given to stepby- step conversation processes along with the facilitation

Uploaded 13 February 2013



Olympus Inc: Intervening for Cultural Change in Organizations

Bernie Neville & Tim Dalmau
Publisher: Karnac Books
Paperback, 450 pages, $37.95
In Olympus Inc., Bernie Neville and Tim Dalmau use the ancient Greek Gods to explores the values, practices and beliefs that underpin businesses, schools, corporations and the like, and through this they illuminate the complex forces and currents that are at work in modern organizations. By combining ancient myth with archetypal psychology, Neville and Dalmau deliver an approach the complex issues of organizational change. Their approach is creative and engaging, but also down-to-earth and practical.

Ethical Leadership

Tim Dalmau and Viv Oates
Published in all of the following journals – Corporate Report, Accountancy SA and Performance

History Trip: A process guide

A description of this process which, when coupled with other techniques and processes, can encourage the deepening of relationships in groups
Uploaded 19 June 2013

One Page Process Enneagram Template

Blank template ready for your personalisation
Uploaded 13 February 2013

Power versus influence


As a leader setting out to achieve a given outcome, we can interact with our colleagues and subordinates from a framework of power or one of influence. It’s about where we are coming from in our own mindset, and hugely influences our probability of success and sustainability as a leader capable of motivating people to achieve great things.


Operating from a power model involves using our position (as their boss etc) to make someone do a task or hold someone accountable, in a manner that is often personal.  If done incorrectly, this results in a negative emotional response from the other party.  It’s a win-lose, or if we get it wrong, lose-win situation, and many times leaders using this method bully their way to results.  This is only useful for short-term leadership with immediate outcomes and comes at the expense of relationships.


A leader operating from power is often seen as being ego driven, hard handed, tunnel focused and will do whatever it takes to win the battle, sometimes at the expense of the war.  Many leaders resort to operating from power in time-pressured, high stakes situations, believing this is the only way to be successful in achieving the outcome they are going for.  This is not the case, as you will see over the coming program.  For they may indeed achieve that outcome, however the damage done in using this method limits the longevity of their leadership with that group of people and diminishes their capacity to motivate their staff/ colleagues towards excellence.


Operating from a model of influence however is a smarter, more strategic and sustainable model of leadership. It involves understanding how to release an individual and a teams’ capacity for excellence through smart leadership.  Never losing sight of the bigger outcomes you are going for, being flexible in the approach to achieve those outcomes and being aware of the effectiveness of any given strategy in the moment.  This therefore also requires leadership techniques that allow one to change strategy if needed to achieve the desired outcome.

Moreover, it involves being really clear on what the issues are and having the skills to be able to address them in a manner which encourages input and accountability on behalf of staff members, as well as limiting defensive responses.  Not only is it possible to achieve timely responses and outcomes in this manner, but relationships can be forged and strengthened in a way which makes staff offer more, becoming more responsible and accountable, more valuable team members.


Watch this video to create a visual image for yourself about the difference between power and influence.



Ethical Leadership


An organization is much more than an economic unit of value. It is an integral part of the broader societal fabric within which it operates. It should understand the role it plays in the  overall advancement of humanity. Its leaders are the embodiment of the organization and, by extension, its collective intellect, soul and conscience. This is a responsibility much greater, and with a much higher purpose, than may initially be apparent. Ethical leaders are those who readily grasp this concept and view their role as stewards of the organization. They understand that they are called upon to leave a legacy that adds to the organization’s overall moral standing and strengthens its future as a global asset and an example to others. Ethical-leadership


Tim Dalmau and Viv Oates of Ernst & Young Africa write about the nature of leadership and ethics in today’s modern corporation. This article has been published in a range of professional journals and papers throughout Africa and globally in Performance.  The article explores the six levels of ethical behavior from the unethical through to the highly ethical




The importance of providing context and opportunity to interact


The importance of providing context and an opportunity to interact cannot be under-estimated if you are to build understanding and will to act amongst the people you lead.


So many leaders seem to think that if they have told or shown information then it should lead to aligned action. They then are dismayed when this does not happen.  “I told them, I sent them emails, I even put it in a power point presentation for them, but they dont seem to get it. They still do their own thing!”


At the heart of this sort of thinking is a failure to understand what it actually takes when you communicate with others to ensure they are prepared to go the next step and work together in an aligned manner to the goal set.


As the diagram illustrates

  1. Raw data is just that  – data – and alone it has little meaning, and no power to stimulate action.
  2. If this data is presented (coded) in a report, email, diagram or some other form it becomes information. But this, will not guarantee action, and this is the point at which many become bewildered.
  3. It is not until context is provided for the information that we get understanding. Information in context generates understanding.
  4. If people have the opportunity to interact with the information they have been given, through talk and conversation, testing and shaping their understanding, then this leads to appreciation of the issue. This appreciation has two components, a cognitive element and a kinesthetic element; put simply, head and gut. You see this so often when someone says “Now I get it” and you notice them sigh or move at the same time in some way.
  5. With an appreciation of the issue combined with a clear understanding of the gap between the current state and desired future state (where we are versus where we need to be) then aligned action results.


Only when you have got to Step 5 can you have confidence that the communication process has been effective. Perhaps a better word might be engagement.


Communicating with someone is not a matter only of providing information. It is really about taking the time to set the context, allow the others to test and interact with the information and one another, and set it against a clear picture of the difference between the current and desired future states.


Leadership Master Classes – hit the mark!


Over 40 participants in Adelaide, Melbourne and Brisbane in May and June 2013, reported that what they learned and experienced in the Leadership Master Classes was “a real game changer”  for them.


Some of the highlights reported by the participants included,

  • learning to use non-verbal behavior to influence others, especially when difficult conversations are required and they wanted to preserve their relationship with the other person
  • seeing themselves as others see them, using video feedback
  • discovering some strategies to manage those ‘interupters’ and ‘loopers’ in meetings
  • having the opportunity to work on their own real leadership issues with experts
  • learning a process for tackling a whole range of difficult or complex problems which simultaneously builds the fabric of a group, allows solutions to emerge and creates aligned action.