6/8/11: A Midweek Look at the Independent Business Blogs

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Independent business blogs are blogs that aren't supported by an organization like a magazine, newspaper, company, or business school. Those people provide lots of great content, but they don't need any additional exposure. In this post, every week, I bring you posts of quality from excellent bloggers that don't get as much publicity.

This week, I'm pointing you to posts on dedicated change agents, setting goals, tapping into your feelings, transparency, and what leadership is for

From Andy Klein: Why dedicated change agents are ineffective (and unnecessary!)
"Perhaps a dedicated change agent has mastered the concepts and theory behind effective change management, but in almost every case, we believe that such a focused role is not only unnecessary but an ineffective use of business time and resources."

Wally's Comment: There are people who think that the best way to bring about effective change in your organization is to have a designated "change agent" in charge of the process. Andy Klein disagrees.

From Jesse Lyn Stoner: 6 Tips to Set Goals That Will Get You Where You Want to Go
"Vision is your destination. Goals are the milestones that mark your journey. They quantify and define the steps you take along the way as you go for the gold medal. "

Wally's Comment: There's been a lot written about goal setting over the years. Hardly anything I've read is as elegant or helpful as this post.

From Dan Rockwell: Don’t Share Your Feelings – Tap into Them
"You can ignore how you feel, you can share how you feel, or you can tap into your emotions and use them to lift others."

Wally's Comment: Yes, you have feelings, and contrary to the advice I got coming up, you can't leave them at the door when you go to work. Dan Rockwell suggests that gives you three choices about what to do with emotions on the job. He thinks one of those choices is best.

From Gwyn Teatro: Transparency ~ How Much Light Do You Let In?
"What do you think of when the word transparency comes up?  Today, the possibilities seem endless when we consider that word in a business or a political context.  When I think of transparency though, I tend to go to the simplest of definition and perhaps the most literal and that is, “allowing the transmission of light through material”. Somehow for me, that definition creates a feeling of wide-open space with room for light and air."

Wally's Comment: Everyone, it seems, is in favor of transparency, but very few people besides Gwyn Teatro have bothered to consider the question of how much transparency is right.

From Scott Eblin: Leadership Is Not An End In Itself
"So much of what we read about leadership is about the exercise of power. A lot of people are drawn to leadership because they want power. Things often end badly for those who equate leadership with power. For those who equate the two, leadership and the accumulation of power essentially become ends in themselves."

Wally's Comment: Scott Eblin's title says it all. Leadership is not an end in itself. Leadership is the means to other ends.

A Blog to Check Out

From Harold Jarche: PKM Updated
"Here are four main processes that can be used in developing critical thinking skills using web tools (click image to enlarge)."

Wally's Comment: I've been waiting for a good post to point you to this blog. It's on my must-read list because I think Jarche thinks deeply about important things and because I like the way he uses both graphics and structured writing to make a point. But not everyone shares my opinion.

I've referred the blog to several people and gotten two, diametrically opposed reactions. I quote one of each. "Great. Lots of good info. Thanks." But there have also been "Why do you think this is good? He doesn't define terms and expects you to have read every post he's ever written."

Check the blog out. There is a lot of great stuff. But Jarche often doesn't bother to define terms. "PKM" is Personal Knowledge Management, for example, a key term that isn't defined in this post either in writing or by linking. It seems to me that he writes for regular readers and thereby makes things difficult for occasional readers. In any case, if you're interested in how learning and the workplace will come together as we go forward, this blog merits evaluation and this post is a good example of why.

Carnivals and Such

June 2011 Leadership Development Carnival– Commencement Edition hosted at Jennifer Miller's People Equation blog.

That's it for this week's selections from independent business blogs. If you liked this piece you may enjoy my regular post on "Leadership Reading to Start Your Week" which features five choice articles from the business schools, the business press and major consulting firms. The last issue had pointers to several recent articles about innovation.

How I Select Posts for this Midweek Review

The five posts I select to share in my Midweek Review of the Independent Business Blogs are picked from a regular review of about sixty blogs I check daily and an additional twenty-five or so that I check occasionally. Here's how I select the posts you see in this review.

They must be published within the previous week.

They must support the purpose of the blog: to help leaders at all levels do a better job and lead a better life.

They must be from an independent business blog.

As a general rule, I only select posts that stand on their own, no selections from a series.

I reserve the right to make exceptions to the above.

Here, on Three Star Leadership, I post things that will help a boss at any level do better and live a better life. At Results vs Activities, I join other bloggers with posts on talent development. My blog at the Toolbox for HR is People and the Changing Workplace .

If you're a boss, you should check out my Working Supervisor's Support Kit.

Wally's Working Supervisor's Support Kit is a collection of information and tools to help working supervisors do a better job. It's based on what Wally's learned in over twenty years of supervisory skills training. Click here to check it out.



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