April 2, 2015 / Leadership / Mariposa Articles

The Communication Toolbox

We all grow up with our own unique communication style. Some people by nature are very direct. They come right to the point. They tell it like it is. They don’t mince words. Other people are more diplomatic, more indirect, more subtle in their communication. Indeed, there are a variety of communication styles—quiet, loud, forceful, caring, showy, authentic, and many more.

One metaphor I have found helpful in working with leaders to develop their communication skills is what I call “The Communication Toolbox.” The idea is that we each have a communication style that is most natural and comfortable for us.  Usually, it’s a style we began to develop early in our lives or careers, and that somehow has served us well.  But no one communication style is going to be right for all situations, and leaders encounter a tremendous diversity of people and contexts.  Part of being a well-rounded leader means having more than just one tool.  The further up you go in an organization, the more important it is to have a broader set of tools in your communication toolbox.To read the entire article, visit the Sierra Leadership blog.

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August 1, 2013 / Design Thinking / Creativity / Innovation / Mariposa Articles

Leader as Designer

Learn how to utilize Design Thinking in your role as a leader.  This essay, Leader as Designer, by Mariposa Leadership CEO Sue Bethanis, opens up Design Thinking to different applications and audiences that goes beyond product development. She offers a clear 4 step process to easily move from idea-to-innovation. The results: successful services,  new experiences, and novel solutions to old problems.

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October 27, 2011 / Coaching Skills / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

ITM Coaching in Action: What, When, and How to Coach in Interrupt-Driven Organizations

How can you coach others in interrupt-driven environments? The ITM Coaching™ model is available to support learning and change. In this article, by Mariposa Leadership, Inc. CEO Susan Bethanis and COO Tawny Lees, the model is broken down into a simple three-step framework with numerous examples to illustrate the concepts in practice.

To download the full article, click here.

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August 29, 2011 / Articles We Like / Coaching Skills / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

The Brain – Friendly Organization: What Leadership Needs to Know for Intelligence to Flourish

brain2Advances in human neuroscience are giving us a window into why people behave as they do and how we can manage our environments and behaviors with others to maximize results. These new scientific findings challenge old assumptions of what it means to lead. While intelligence is our greatest strategic asset, our way of life has become profoundly out of sync with our neurology. We can fight biology or leverage it. As we understand more about human neuroscience, true leadership may become defined as the art of creating brain-friendly organizations.

Find out how advances in neuroscience and our understanding of the human brain are revolutionizing what it means to lead effectively by downloading the full article here.

About the Author:

Janet Crawford, M.A., has over 15 years of experience working with executives in Fortune 500 companies and high potential start-ups.  As Principal of Cascadance, Janet primes leaders and organizations for productivity, innovation and collaboration in the 21st Century. Her approach combines traditional leadership development and coaching with cutting-edge insights from neuroscience.

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December 27, 2010 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

GIANTs Lessons for Corporate Leaders

Those of you who know me well know that I live in the heart of San Francisco and that I am a passionate Giants fan! A few of you have encouraged me to write about the Giants’ recent World Series victory, particularly, what lessons from the Giants’ World Series run can be applied to corporate leadership?

To download the full article, click here.

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October 2, 2010 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

Stay Curious Amid Uncertainty

“Stay curious, my friends!” is my new favorite slogan, what I envision the “most-interesting-man-in-the-world” saying if he wasn’t selling beer. I sure love those Dos Equis’ ads, even though I am not a big beer drinker. Perhaps it is because I secretly want to be the “most-interesting-woman-in-the-world.” Or maybe it is because when I hear the latest version of these ads, I literally laugh out loud –- even though I am alone in my car. Dos Equis’ ad agency deserves an award for their creativity; and I appreciate that they are putting a magnifier on curiosity!

Curiosity is free! Curiosity is a mindset! And curiosity is the antidote to the unrelenting uncertainty that has become the norm in business today. Curiosity increases our ability to be empathetic in a variety of situations and open to others’ ideas. Think of being a stranger in a foreign country. Our ability to flex, adapt, and see things differently in a foreign country is analogous to dealing with uncertain times in this new strange world of business.

To download the full article, click here.

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November 1, 2009 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

Leading in Green: Insights from Executives in the Solar Industry

Effective leadership, a strong strategic focus, and the nimbleness to engage in rapid business transformation are critical.  These qualities will enable individual companies and the entire industry to thrive in an emerging, chaotic environment.  Given the state of the industry, what will it take to win from a leadership and strategy standpoint?

To download full article, click here.

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August 7, 2009 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

When Bad Coaches Happen to Good People

What are the differences between a seasoned, experienced coach and a novice?  Whether you are currently engaged in leadership coaching or entertaining the possibility, here’s what you should look for when contracting with an executive coach. Don’t let yourself be a victim of “bad coaches that happen to good people.”

To download full article, click here.

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April 13, 2009 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

Five Keys to Increase Your Organization’s Resilience in the Downturn

How do you lead your company to success— even in difficult times? Get the essential strategies to equip your company to do more with less in this Special Report.  This article not only addresses the balance of productivity and innovation, it also goes into detail on practical how-to’s: you will learn details on how to embed productivity and innovation into your organization, which will, in turn, increase your resiliency.

To download the full article, click here.

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June 17, 2008 / HR / Talent Management / Mariposa Articles

Stir, Don't Shake

Three weeks ago, I sat with a coaching client who was “lost.” Normally, J.J., a vice president for a high-tech company, is the consummate high-potential leader: a glass-half full kind of guy, a cheerleader for his team, extremely loyal to his boss and his boss’s boss, tireless in his work ethic, and a constant problem-solver. On this particular day, however, the inordinate amount of organizational turmoil he was facing had finally gotten him down. He and his colleagues were running out of good things to say about their company, which had been through a series of devastating internal and external changes, including a reduction in force, bad public relations, and constant re-organizations. J.J. was disappointed in the company’s leadership and in himself for feeling so bad; still, he thought he should “hang in there.”

In the four coaching sessions prior to this one, we had done a lot of problem solving about his team. In those sessions, I noticed he was focused much more on others than himself, and I sensed that he was not ready to talk about his feelings or his spirit. So we talked about practical matters: how to spin bad news to good news with his team, what information he could share with them that wouldn’t get him in trouble, and how he could spend more time with his wife and kids.

To download full article, click here.

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