When Leaders Say They Are Aligned—But Aren’t

Five key practices can unify leaders up, down, and across the organization—and spark concerted action.

When Pitching an Idea, Should You Focus on “Why” or “How”?

There are two camps on the most effective way to frame an innovative idea. One contends you should emphasize why the idea is desirable. The other says you should focus on how to implement the idea. Which one is right? A research project found that the answer depends on your audience. If you’re making a pitch to novices, focus on why. If you’re making it … [ Read more ]

The Ultimate Guide to Running Executive Meetings — 25 Tips from Top Startup Leaders

Great meetings don’t just happen, they’re meticulously crafted. At its best, an executive meeting strengthens the bonds of your leadership team, surfaces mission-critical problems facing the business, and carves out plans for the future. But as you wade into the executive meeting waters, there are waves that can toss you around.

The executive team’s time is worth a lot, so it’s a shame to waste it. … [ Read more ]

Better Communication Through Neuroscience

Real-world, face-to-face communication — complete with eye contact, body language, and other important sources of information — is a rarity in business today, and the potential for failing to convey an intended message or giving the wrong impression has grown. Neuroscience research has uncovered specific ways that you can fine-tune your message — whether it’s giving performance feedback, persuading your team to embrace a change … [ Read more ]

Five Common Communication Mistakes (And How to Fix Them)

Learn how to be more effective at your next meeting or presentation.

Open Your Organization to Honest Conversations

When company leaders can’t hear the voices of their workers, serious strategic mistakes are likely. Here are ways organizations can build powerful communication channels.

The Assumptions Employees Make When They Don’t Get Feedback

One piece of feedback that the executives I coach receive over and over again from their direct reports is: “She doesn’t give enough helpful feedback.”

When I ask these direct reports about the impact this has on them, I find that, in the absence of understanding why they’re getting so little feedback, they often make up their own explanations.

Here are three of the most common stories … [ Read more ]

Hit the Mark: Make Complex Ideas Understandable

6 ways to communicate challenging concepts to an audience.

The 4-Letter Word That Makes My Blood Boil

“JUST” is one of the worst four-letter words I know. Whenever I catch myself using it, I stop and apologize. And when I hear it, I hold up my hand and stop the person speaking. If you use the words “just” or “simply,” you might have forgotten how hard the technical details can be.

How This Head of Engineering Boosted Transparency at Instagram

Not long after James Everingham joined Instagram as the head of engineering, results came back from the employee satisfaction survey that’s conducted every six months. The marks were pretty good, but one problem spot caught Everingham’s eye: the low transparency score.

Transparency is a persistent, thorny problem because we’re not all on the same page about what it even means. To Everingham, transparency was about building … [ Read more ]