Joe and Wanda on Management

Joe Kerr and Wanda B. Goode, two characters from Nick McCormick’s book, “Lead Well and Prosper,” dispense their management wisdom

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Category: Leadership Development

Wishing Success

2 August, 2014 (14:02) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Personal Development, Success | By: Administrator

In his book, Talk Like TED, Carmine Gallo relays how TED speaker Larry Smith doesn’t wish others good luck. Rather he says, “I wish you success.” Why? Because, luck has little to do with your success.

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Talk like TED? Good success with that!

Wanda B. Goode: We do tend to “make our own luck,” so I like Larry’s twist on the common well-wishing phrase. Love those TED presentations too. Will make a point to check out Larry Smith’s

Here are a couple of related posts

How to Make Your Own Luck
7 Easy Ways to Make Your Own Luck

Managers: Beware the Ego

14 August, 2013 (22:05) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management | By: Administrator

In their book, The High Engagement Work Culture, David Bowles and Cary Cooper compare ego to a psychological virus. Below is an excerpt.

  • Ego requires a human host, which it “infects.”
  • Ego in excess can be deadly to its human host.
  • Even when not deadly, it can and does degrade human life and drain it of many of its joys.
  • It is able to hide so that its host has no idea that he/she is “infected.”
  • When discovered, ego can mutate so that it is once again hidden.
  • Ego makes its host defend it and ensure its continued existence, even when that is against the host’s best interest.
  • Ego has a deep “bag of tricks” to stay invisible, and to maintain itself.
  • Like with a virus, cases can be very mile and almost symptom-free or severe and life-threatening.

They maintain that ego drives worker disengagement. Here’s their description of an ego driven boss from hell.

  • She takes credit for projects that you started and carried out.
  • He never hires people smarter than himself.
  • He “licks up” and “kicks down” in the organization structure.
  • She cannot take criticism.
  • He is a perfectionist and one can never “do it well enough” for him.
  • She never allows anyone else to make any significant decisions in her area.

Sound familiar Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: I know where this is going… “Leggo my ego.”

Wanda B. Goode: I think most of us can relate to the above. We certainly don’t like bosses that behave that way. We’ve witnessed the damage they inflict. We need to be careful that we don’t pull the same stunts ourselves.

Here are a couple of related posts

How to Keep Your Ego in Check
Management Wisdom: A Healthy Ego or Deadly Blind Spot

Managers, Are You Learning from Experience?

29 June, 2013 (15:54) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management | By: Administrator

In her book, “Leading So People Will Follow,” Erika Andersen has an interesting quote about the implications of not learning from experience…

“When someone doesn’t learn from experience, it feels dangerous to us: our deepest instincts tell us this means he or she is more likely to lead us all to destruction. We retract our faith and belief and our will to follow, and we try to figure things out for ourselves, as individuals, rather than together with our leader and our teammates. We lose the power that arises from unity.”

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Of course I learn from my experiences, but the real payoff is when I see others learn from my experiences. I’m a walking University, and class is in session daily!

Wanda B. Goode: Whenever we march down the same silly paths, whether due to our inability to learn or the inability of other managers above us to do so, it can be incredibly demoralizing. We need to find a way to snap out of it by responding in new and creative ways.

Here are a couple of related posts

Learning from Experience and Success in Business
The Nature of Good Leadership

Empathy in the Workplace

16 December, 2012 (21:24) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Personal Development | By: Administrator

In a 2007 white paper on Empathy in the workplace, researchers with the Center for Creative Leadership share results of a study they performed. It indicates that manager empathy is positively related to overall job performance. The paper also references a 2009 study which claims that 50% of managers are seen as poor performers or failures in their jobs. So why not teach managers to be a little more empathetic?

Thoughts Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Well, I’m a terrific manager, so either I’ve learned to successfully compensate for my lack of empathy, or I’m incredibly empathetic and don’t even realize it!

Wanda B. Goode: Might as well try something! Selling the advantages of the softer side of management is tough, but this study should help as it points to a positive correlation to hard results.

Here are a couple of related posts
Sales Managers as Empathetic Leaders
Management Skills: Three Ways to Build Empathy
Empathy Can’t be Taught but it Can be Practiced

Continuous Learning

5 June, 2012 (22:20) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Training | By: Administrator

In Debra Benton’s new book, The Virtual Executive, she has some great quotes about continuous learning…

There are two basic needs in life: procreation and education. The first enables humankind to survive, the second enables you to survive.

If you don’t continue to learn, your ROI will stand for “return on ignorance.”

Ignorance makes simple things 10 times more difficult than they should be and difficult things nearly impossible.

Comments, Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Haven’t had a whole lot of education post college, but I have done my share of procreating. So, I definitely have that going for me. Humankind owes me a debt of gratitude.

Wanda B. Goode: Great quotes. Learning is so important. The hard part is making the time to do it. It’s easy to get swept up in the day-to-day of our busy jobs and neglect our education. We need to block off some time each week for ourselves and encourage our team members to do the same.

Some related quotes and a related post

“Why don’t they pass a constitutional amendment prohibiting anybody from learning anything? If it works as well as prohibition did, in five years Americans would be the smartest race of people on Earth.”
– Will Rogers

“The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as long as we live.”

Three Ways to Promote Continuous Learning

2011 May Leadership Development Carnival

4 May, 2011 (09:17) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management | By: Administrator

Dan McCarthy hosts the May, 2011 Leadership Development Carnival at his site, Great Leadership. Sample the dozens of management and leadership articles posted this month.

5 Must-Have Conversations for New Leaders

15 February, 2011 (01:00) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Podcast - Management Tips | By: Administrator

Wooden Nickel - Management Tips 4

Kevin Eikenberry, co-author of From Bud to Boss, joins us for the second time on the Management Tips Podcast Series. With this tip, Kevin focuses on new leaders. He suggests that new managers have five very important conversations as soon as possible. If they do, their jobs will be much more effective and enjoyable. Listen to the podcast to find out more.

Kevin’s new book, From Bud to Boss, actually launches today, February 15th. To celebrate, some free gifts are available to those that purchase the book today. To find out more, visit

icon for podpress  Kevin Eikenberry's Management Tip [8:58m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download

2011 January Leadership Development Carnival

3 January, 2011 (23:07) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management | By: Administrator

Dan McCarthy hosts the January, 2011 Leadership Development Carnival at his site, Great Leadership. Sample the 30+ management and leadership articles posted this month.

Managers: Lift Them Up

29 December, 2010 (15:12) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management, Personal Development, Servant Leadersip | By: Administrator

Here’s another one from Chester Elton’s latest book, The Orange Revolution.

“A leader’s greatest success comes by lifting someone else into the spotlight. It’s a truth too few managers ever learn.”

Why is that Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: Because they are very heavy, and they ain’t my brothers!

Wanda B. Goode: I think it’s because it’s a bit counterintuitive. It’s similar to, “the more you give, the more you get.” It seems one has to experience it first hand before it is believed. Getting over the hump is not easy.

A couple of related posts…

Ten Things for Sure about Building a Business
The Mentor Leader

Managing – and the Importance of Self-Awareness

15 November, 2010 (23:19) | Leadership, Leadership Development, Management | By: Administrator

In his new book, Good Boss, Bad Boss, Robert Sutton mentions that developing and sustaining self-awareness should be at the top of the list of skills to develop for every boss. Most people don’t realize their own deficiencies. To make matters worse, according to studies, when people are given just a little bit of power they tend to become self-centered and less compassionate.

Thoughts, Joe and Wanda?

Joe Kerr: The only person that might know me better than me is my momma, and she is very well aware that her Joey is the cat’s meow.

Wanda B. Goode: This reminds me of that study where 75% of men considered themselves in the top 25% in athletic ability. People just have a tough time evaluating themselves objectively. Furthermore, even a small dose of power does not help matters. I suppose just knowing these things is the first step toward self-awareness. For me, it also emphasizes the importance of having someone close by that can tell the emperor she has no clothes.

Here are a couple of related posts…
The Enemy is Me
A Leader’s First Lesson in Self-Awareness: Shut Up and Listen