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Leaders Who Don’t Snooze Lose

The area of the human brain that evolved most recently is the pre-frontal cortex. It’s the area of the brain that controls reasoning, problem solving, inhibition, organizing, planning, and the executing of plans. It’s also the part of the brain that’s most dependent on your getting enough sleep.

A recent Harvard Business Review survey of 180 business leaders revealed that 43% — 4 out of 10 — said they don’t get enough sleep at least four nights a week. It’s easy to understand how this happens in our 24/7, always-connected world, but it’s a problem.

Earlier studies by McKinsey&Company found that there are four traits in particular that closely correspond with excellence in leadership:

  • Operating with a strong orientation to results
  • Solving problems effectively
  • Seeking out different perspectives
  • Supporting others

Unfortunately for sleepy-headed leaders, all four are affected adversely by a lack of adequate rest.

Operating With a Strong Orientation to Results

Lack of sleep impairs one’s ability to focus. After 17–19 hours awake, concentration degrades to the equivalent of a person with a 0.05% blood alcohol — in some countries, that’s considered drunk. After 20 hours, it’s as if you have a 0.1% blood alcohol level. That’s like being legally drunk in the U.S.

Solving Problems Effectively

Sleep promotes insight, pattern recognition and the ability to come up with new ideas. Participants in one study were more likely to find a hidden shortcut after a good night’s sleep. Naps can also refresh a person’s ability to problem solve, and dream sleep apparently sets the sleeper up for creative thinking by allowing the brain to associate unrelated information in novel ways.

Seeking Out Different Perspectives

Sufficient sleep enhances the absorbing and utilizing of different perspectives since it makes the brain more capable of encoding new information, consolidating it in your memory, and retrieving it for use. It also promotes a clear-headed ability to weigh different opinions without imposing a cognitive bias.

Supporting Others

When you lack sleep, you’re far more likely to misinterpret others’ emotional cues, and it’s much more likely that you’ll feel and express negativity rather than a supportive attitude. A study showed, in fact, that employees feel less engaged with their own work when their bosses are over-tired.

The takeaway? Don’t feel guilty for shutting down your devices tonight. Get some sleep.

 

Dora Wang

Dora is an employee engagement reporter for TINYpulse. When she's not busy digging into and covering the latest workplace trends, she's wrangling with her three (yes, three) cats and rooting for the Seahawks.

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America’s First Leader Showed How Leadership Is Done

During this February’s week that begins with Presidents Day, one chief executive stands out as an example of what it’s like when someone’s serious about leading: George Washington. You can tell how seriously he took it by the fact that he walked away from it. Twice. Ray Hennessy writing for Entrepreneur points out what we might learn from Washington’s unusual example.

Many people in leadership positions arrive there after climbing competitively up a ladder fueled by ambition or even ego, but Washington seems to have viewed taking charge as just being something that someone had to do. And it may well be that this reticence led him naturally to one of the most powerful skills a wise leader has at their disposal: Knowing when not to use power and to just let things unfold as they will.

The first time Washington decided that the power he held was best left unused was immediately after his victory in the Revolutionary War, even though historically, generals who win wars typically go on to build power and prestige during the peace. Not him; he retired. The resignation letter he wrote to Congress was short and sweet: “Happy in the confirmation of our independence and sovereignty, and pleased with the opportunity afforded the United States of becoming a respectable nation, I resign with satisfaction…”

Shortly after heading home to Mount Vernon, Washington was prevailed upon to attend the Constitutional Convention, where it was assumed he was going to be the nation’s first president, a job that was deliberately constructed to let Washington shape it as desired once in office. With no term limits yet in place — they arrived nearly two hundred years later in 1951 — Washington could have remained as president until he died, but after two terms, he walked away, saying it was time for the young nation to summon new leadership.

So while a company isn’t a country, the basic principle is the same. It’s that great leaders understand the difference between ruling and serving, and how wisely forgoing the use of power can sometimes its ultimate use.

Naomi Thalenberg

Naomi is a reporter for TINYpulse, living and breathing everything employee engagement. She does this by always keeping her workstation fully stocked with dark chocolates.

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New Study Shows Women in Management Results in Higher Profits

The New York Times reports on a just-released study by the non-profit Peterson Institute for International Economics which shows that companies that want higher profits would be well served by getting more women into management. Nearly 22,000 publicly traded companies from 91 countries were surveyed in the study.

The study found no conclusive evidence, though, that a higher number of female CEOs or board members affect a company’s bottom line.

On the other hand, what the study did reveal was that having women in other top-management positions was definitively correlated with increased profits. According to Marcus Noland, the institute’s director of studies, “An increase in the share of women from zero to 30% would be associated with a 15% rise in profitability.”

While a Pew Research study released in 2014 showed that Americans consider women to be equally qualified for being business and political leaders, it’s obvious more needs to be done to actually make this happen.

  • Less than 5% of companies surveyed had a chief woman executive
  • 50% had no female executives at all
  • 60% of the companies had no women on their boards
  • 12% of American companies surveyed had female board members
  • 16% of their executives were female

Norway has the most diversity, with women in 40% of board seats and 20% of their executive positions. Japan was at the low end, with women only representing 2% of board members and only 3% of their executives.

One of the Peterson study’s tantalizing finds was that countries with high math scores in schools tended to produce more female business leaders. This was a far stronger profit indicator than legal quotas for female board membership such as those in Norway, Denmark, and Finland.

Surprisingly, the survey showed paternal leave contributed more to higher female leadership numbers than maternity leave, probably because it represents more sharing of child-rearing responsibilities. Overall, Noland says, “If you have a supportive set of policies, which would include paternal leave, which allows women to have children while maintaining their careers in a relatively undisruptive manner, you see more women making it to the very top.”

Dora Wang

Dora is an employee engagement reporter for TINYpulse. When she's not busy digging into and covering the latest workplace trends, she's wrangling with her three (yes, three) cats and rooting for the Seahawks.

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5 Easy Ways to Help People See You As a Leader

It seems like some people are just born leaders, with a hard-to-define leadership presence that makes others want to follow. We know it when we see it.

According to Carol Kinsey Goman writing for Forbes, leadership presence is something that one can develop. It’s about the way people perceive someone who exhibits confidence, composure, credibility, connection, and charisma. She offers five very simple things you can do to increase your leadership presence:

1. Prime your brain to power up your confidence: Confidence is probably the most important thing a leader exudes. Think about a time you held power over someone or performed a task really well, in order to spend a few moments with that positive, powerful feeling. Let your body language help project confidence, too, by standing up straight, head up, and shoulders back.

2. Tell yourself, “What’s on their face is not about me”: It’s far too easy to psyche yourself out by assuming someone’s sour expression reflects an opinion about you. Stay cool by remembering it’s probably not, and that they have their own lives to deal with.

3. Increase credibility with “because”: This word has magic in it. Maybe it’s because it communicates reasonability and respect for the listener as being deserving of an explanation.

4. Connect more effectively by shifting your focus: There’s no capital you can acquire that’s more powerful than strong interpersonal relationships. As you converse, set your own goals aside for a moment and try to think of something you can do for the other person.

5. Boost your charisma with body language: Charisma relates to warmth, so use body language to help communicate it. Smile, use friendly eye contact, and keep your arms and legs in non-defensive positions. Think about mirroring others’ movements to subtly impart connection, and face people when they’re talking to you because getting your undivided attention makes the other person feel like he or she is important to you.

Naomi Thalenberg

Naomi is a reporter for TINYpulse, living and breathing everything employee engagement. She does this by always keeping her workstation fully stocked with dark chocolates.

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Exceptionally Likable People Share 13 Good Habits

Sometimes we get the feeling that being likable is something people are born with. You either have it or you don’t. It turns out, though, that you can cultivate your likability.

According to Dr. Travis Bradberry of Talent Smart, when UCLA asked respondents to rate over 500 adjectives for how they relate to likability, they found that the key traits were sincerity, transparency, and the ability to understand another person.

TalentSmart did their own study of over a million people and found that people with “emotional intelligence,” or “EQ,” are not only very likable, they’re also much more likely to succeed. It also turned out they had 13 attractive habits in common.

1. They Ask Questions: Lots of questions show that you care about what someone else thinks.

2. They Put Away Their Phones: Do you enjoy it when someone glances at their phone while you’re talking?

3. They’re Genuine: Nobody likes a fake. It’s so much better to be calm, real, and comfortable in your own skin.

4. They Don’t Pass Judgment: An open mind communicates that you respect the other person enough to really value what they’re saying.

5. They Don’t Seek Attention: Being larger than life doesn’t help others relate to you. You may appear desperate.

6. They’re Consistent: An inconsistent personality makes people feel you can’t be counted on.

7. They Use Positive Body Language: People respond when your vocal tone communicates enthusiasm, your unfolded arms show openness, and you lean in slightly to show interest.

8. They Leave a Strong First Impression: People will often make up their mind within just seven seconds. Think body language. Think #10 below.

9. They Greet People By Name: People innately feel closer to someone who uses their name throughout a conversation.

10. They Smile: Since people tend to mirror each other’s behavior, why not help a person have a good time talking to you?

11. They Know When to Open Up: Oversharing, especially about negative things, is a turnoff. Listen carefully to see if there really is reason to say more.

12. They Know Who To Touch (and They Touch Them): Touching communicates caring and releases oxytocin, a neurotransmitter that engenders trust and affection. Of course, you’ve got to be aware of personal boundaries.

13. They Balance Passion and Fun: People enjoy being with others who love what they do and are passionate and excited about it.

Naomi Thalenberg

Naomi is a reporter for TINYpulse, living and breathing everything employee engagement. She does this by always keeping her workstation fully stocked with dark chocolates.

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50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP

Being a leader requires more than just barking directions and meddling in people’s work. Courage, inspiration, honesty — these are all great leadership qualities that every manager should strive for.

So if you need a little kick, here are 50 great quotes that will inspire you to become a first-class leader

50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP by TINYpulse

 

1. “To handle yourself, use your head; to handle others, use your heart.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

2. “The mediocre teacher tells. The good teacher explains. The superior teacher demonstrates. The great teacher inspires.” – William Arthur Ward

3. “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

4. “Power isn’t control at all — power is strength, and giving that strength to others. A leader isn’t someone who forces others to make him stronger; a leader is someone willing to give his strength to others that they may have the strength to stand on their own.” – Beth Revis

5. “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things.” – Peter F. Drucker

6. “Leadership is not about titles, positions, or flow charts. It is about one life influencing another.” – John C. Maxwell

7. “There is a difference between being a leader and being a boss. Both are based on authority. A boss demands blind obedience; a leader earns his authority through understanding and trust.” – Klaus Balkenhol

8. “You manage things; you lead people.” – Grace Murray Hopper

9. “Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself. When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.” – Jack Welch

10. “The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born — that there is a genetic factor to leadership. That’s nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders are made rather than born.” – Warren Bennis

50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP by TINYpulse

11. “The best executive is the one who has sense enough to pick good men to do what he wants done, and self-restraint enough to keep from meddling with them while they do it.” – Theodore Roosevelt

12. “The very essence of leadership is that you have to have a vision. It’s got to be a vision you articulate clearly and forcefully on every occasion. You can’t blow an uncertain trumpet.” – Reverend Theodore Hesburgh

13. “Never tell people how to do things. Tell them what to do and they will surprise you with their ingenuity.”  – General George Patton

14. “Education is the mother of leadership.” – Wendell Willkie

15. “Management is about arranging and telling. Leadership is about nurturing and enhancing.” – Tom Peters

16. “A cowardly leader is the most dangerous of men.” – Stephen King

17. “Earn your leadership every day.”  – Michael Jordan

18. “Average leaders raise the bar on themselves; good leaders raise the bar for others; great leaders inspire others to raise their own bar.” – Orrin Woodward

19. “Become the kind of leader that people would follow voluntarily, even if you had no title or position.” – Brian Tracy

20. “As we look ahead into the next century, leaders will be those who empower others.” – Bill Gates

50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP by TINYpulse

21. “The leaders who offer blood, toil, tears and sweat always get more out of their followers than those who offer safety and a good time. When it comes to the pinch, human beings are heroic.” – George Orwell

22. “People ask the difference between a leader and a boss. The leader leads, and the boss drives.” – President Theodore Roosevelt

23. “The final test of a leader is that he leaves behind him in other men the conviction and the will to carry on.” – Walter Lippmann

24. “Make sure you’re not just waiting for someone else to fix things, or hoping that things will improve. Figure out what’s going on and make a plan to improve things.” – Kenneth Thomas

25. “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.” – Steve Jobs

26. “If you think you are leading and turn around to see no one following, then you are just taking a walk.” – Benjamin Hooks

27. “You manage things; you lead people.” – Grace Hopper

28. “The greatest leader is not necessarily the one who does the greatest things. He is the one that gets the people to do the greatest things.” – Ronald Reagan

29. “A man can only lead when others accept him as their leader, and he has only as much authority as his subjects give to him. All of the brilliant ideas in the world cannot save your kingdom if no one will listen to them.” – Brandon Sanderson

30. “A leader is like a shepherd. He stays behind the flock, letting the most nimble go out ahead, whereupon the others follow, not realizing that all along they are being directed from behind.” – Nelson Mandela

50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP by TINYpulse

31. “Great leaders find ways to connect with their people and help them fulfill their potential.” – Steven Stowell

32. “The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

33. “Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing.” – Albert Schweitzer

34. “The task of the leader is to get his people from where they are to where they have not been.” – Henry Kissinger

35. “You cannot be a leader, and ask other people to follow you, unless you know how to follow too.” – Sam Rayburn

36. “The single biggest way to impact an organization is to focus on leadership development. There is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raises them up as leaders and continually develops them.”- John Maxwell

37. “Dont find fault; find a remedy.” – Henry Ford

38. “Good management is the art of making problems so interesting and their solutions so constructive that everyone wants to get to work and deal with them.” – Paul Hawken

39. “Hold yourself responsible for a higher standard than anybody expects of you. Never excuse yourself.” – Henry Ward Beecher

40. “Leadership is practiced not so much in words as in attitude and in actions.” – Harold S. Geneen

50 INSPIRATIONAL QUOTES ABOUT LEADERSHIP by TINYpulse

41. “You have to lead people gently towards what they already know is right.” – Phil Crosby

42. “Leadership is a privilege to better the lives of others. It is not an opportunity to satisfy personal greed.” – Mwai Kibaki

43. “The function of leadership is to produce more leaders, not more followers.” – Ralph Nader

44. “Leadership is a choice, not a position.” – Stephen Covey

45. “Leadership is a potent combination of strategy and character. But if you must be without one, be without the strategy.” – Norman Schwarzkopf

45. “Leadership is hard to define and good leadership even harder. But if you can get people to follow you to the ends of the Earth, you are a great leader.” – Indra Nooyi

46. “To me, leadership is about encouraging people. It’s about stimulating them. It’s about enabling them to achieve what they can achieve — and to do that with a purpose.” – Christine Lagarde

47. “Real leadership is leaders recognizing that they serve the people that they lead. – Pete Hoekstra

48. “Leadership is about vision and responsibility, not power.” – Seth Berkley

49. “I think leadership is more than being able to cross the t’s and dot the i’s. It’s about character and integrity and work ethic.” – Steve Largent

50. “Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting, and most importantly, a way of communicating.” – Simon Sinek

If you have a favorite quote that I missed, feel free to share it in the comment section below!

Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the editor in chief for TINYpulse news. She's dipped her toes into various works of writing — from retail copywriter to magazine editor. Her work's been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg BNA, and Tech.co.

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6 Enduring Leadership Lessons from Darth Vader

6_Enduring_Leadership_Lessons_from_Darth_Vader_8Darth Vader is one of the most iconic figures in the history of cinema. For those unfamiliar with the Star Wars movies (is that possible?), it turns out that Vader wasn’t even that bad of a guy, actually.

Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the editor in chief for TINYpulse news. She's dipped her toes into various works of writing — from retail copywriter to magazine editor. Her work's been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg BNA, and Tech.co.

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5 ENDURING LEADERSHIP QUALITIES FROM SANTA CLAUS

Ho ho ho. The holiday season is in full swing, and jolly ol’ Saint Nick is tirelessly plugging away getting toys ready for all the good boys and girls on his list (and collecting all those coal chunks for those not-so-good boys and girls).

Laura Troyani

Laura is an entrepreneur and reporter. She loves helping companies spot new tips, tricks, and trends to improve their organizational culture. In her free time, you can catch relaxing with her two bulldogs.

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10 Best Books to Give to Your Boss for the Holidays

Optimized-iStock_000061659254_SmallGot a boss that makes you want to pull your hair out? Maybe they’re the best manager you’ve ever worked with. If you’re struggling to figure out what to get your boss for the holidays, ever consider a book?

Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the editor in chief for TINYpulse news. She's dipped her toes into various works of writing — from retail copywriter to magazine editor. Her work's been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg BNA, and Tech.co.

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20 Powerful TED Talks to Improve Your Leadership Skills

iStock_000069623915_Small.jpgWhere would we be without TED Talks? Since 1984, TED has worked to share ideas relating to technology, health, and management, among other subjects. Throughout the years, speakers like Al Gore, David Blaine, and Douglas Adams have given talk  to help inspire others to improve their lives.

Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the editor in chief for TINYpulse news. She's dipped her toes into various works of writing — from retail copywriter to magazine editor. Her work's been featured in Forbes, Bloomberg BNA, and Tech.co.

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