“Thanksgiving Leadership,” Revisited

This week – Thanksgiving week here in the US – seemed an appropriate time to revisit the ideas of Banquet Leadership, Potluck Leadership, and the hybrid model we call Thanksgiving Leadership. If you’ve been reading the Building Bridges Leadership blog for a while, you may be familiar with our distinction between Banquet and Potluck models of leadership. In short, BanquetContinue reading ““Thanksgiving Leadership,” Revisited”

When Did You Last Say “I Was Wrong?”

Think of a time you’ve been in a position of authority. A common feeling in those circumstances is feeling like you were expected to know it all, worrying when you don’t, and faking it to show strength and stability for those you are managing. Faking it can work well in a lot of situations, butContinue reading “When Did You Last Say “I Was Wrong?””

Who’s In Your “Human Library”?

In her TEDx Talk “What Does My Headscarf Mean To You?“, mechanical engineer, writer and activist Yassmin Abdel-Magied notes that people are often surprised to learn that she designed race cars and ran her university’s racing team. They’re equally surprised to learn that she trained as a boxer for five years. Both break the stereotypeContinue reading “Who’s In Your “Human Library”?”

The Benefits and Challenges of Mirroring & Matching

How often have you been with a close friend or family member and noticed after a while that you are sitting with the same posture, and matching each other’s tone as you talk? Do you notice this in others when you see best friends getting coffee together? Such behavior is often simply thought of asContinue reading “The Benefits and Challenges of Mirroring & Matching”

“What If…?” – Seeking Nuance and Kicking the Tires

“What if…?” has become a powerful and oft-used question over the last pandemic era – perhaps more than at any point in our lifetimes, as we’ve pondered the many changes that COVID could bring. I recently heard about a March 2020 article discussing our collective cultural responses to the pandemic in three terms: a blizzard (our initial short-term ‘stayContinue reading ““What If…?” – Seeking Nuance and Kicking the Tires”

The Olympics and MI Theory

A few weeks ago I referred to the Good Work Project and the work of Harvard professor Howard Gardner. The work for which Gardner is most known – the Theory of Multiple Intelligences – is always worth taking a look at, and seems particularly relevant during the Olympics. The Olympics provides a dazzling display of athletes using a mixture of naturalContinue reading “The Olympics and MI Theory”

Using People-First Language for Dignity and Respect

Academia and business are different worlds, with different goals and day-to-day work. And yet, after working at Harvard for 15 years, I find that a lot of the work that resonates with clients most comes from the academic world. Recently I was reminded of the concept of “people-first language” by a Black student, who postedContinue reading “Using People-First Language for Dignity and Respect”

Fireworks and Your Team

If you live in the United States or Canada, you’ll have had the chance to see fireworks at some point recently – in person or on a broadcast. If you’re anything like me, your experience might be a mix of enjoyment and of sensory overwhelm (though no other display will ever quite compare to theContinue reading “Fireworks and Your Team”

Being A Signal Booster – Amplifying Others’ Voices

How often have you read or heard about inequality, marginalization, or hate crimes against an identity group of which you are not a part, and been left wondering “but what can I do?” If your own life experiences are different than those experiencing these acts, it can be easy to miss the full context and scope; toContinue reading “Being A Signal Booster – Amplifying Others’ Voices”

Juneteenth, Black Wall Street, and Honoring Complicated History

A few weeks ago – May 31 and June 1 – brought the centennial of the Tulsa race massacre, one of the worst single incidents of racial violence in American history. Mobs of White residents, many of them deputized and given weapons by city officials, attacked Black residents and destroyed homes and businesses in 35 squareContinue reading “Juneteenth, Black Wall Street, and Honoring Complicated History”