6 months of Reading for Leading! Top posts so far…

Every Monday morning for around 6 months I’ve been sharing a tip, reflection or short exercise about leadership and team-building. These Reading for Leading posts have covered a range of topics including systems thinking, self-care and networking tips as well as communication skills, time management and how to give good feedback.

Want to be a less robotic, more connected leader?Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/katy_tresedder/4902216441/

If you’ve not been following the series or may have missed some of the 26 posts so far, here are some of the most popular posts:

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Reading for Leading #25: Reactive versus responsive

Reactive versus responsive

Reading for Leading is a weekly leadership tip shared every Monday morning as a pithy suggestion, question or reflection. You can find the whole series here.

In our busy, hyper-connected lives a steady stream of notifications, alerts and lengthening to do lists can easily pull us into a reactive state, where each new input takes our focus away from our initial intentions for the day. We may enter into a struggle to deal with the distraction as quickly as possible and then pick up the dropped threads of our previous activity. This can becoming exhausting and unproductive as it disrupts our workflow and may lead to unskillful, quick-fire reactions rather than more considered, appropriate ones.

Chess is a great example of balancing reactive and responsive actions.
Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/adamraoof/16767990831/

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Community Manager musings: Technical stewards – community managers with toolkits!

Community manager musings is a series of occasional posts looking at the roles and skills of community managers – usually within science. 

What’s in a community manager’s toolkit? As technology stewards they may choose, use and support multiple tools.
Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/elkokoparrilla/5106301020/

 

As we’ve been exploring on this blog, community managers can exist in different types of communities within science, and their role can have a variety of names, depending on what they’re doing and what kind of organisation they’re working for. In my latest reading I’ve been learning about the role of the technology steward – a term coined by Etienne Wenger, Nancy White and John D.Smith and described in their 2009 book, “Digital Habitats.”

Their description states that a technology steward…

“…adopts a community’s perspective to help a community choose, configure and use technologies to best serve its needs. Tech stewards attend both to what happens spontaneously and what can happen purposefully, by plan and by cultivation of insights into what actually works.”

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Reading for Leading #24: A wheel for how you feel

A wheel for how you feel

Reading for Leading is a weekly leadership tip shared every Monday morning as a pithy suggestion, question or reflection. You can find the whole series here.

Do you ever struggle to pinpoint exactly what emotion you’re feeling at work? Maybe something that’s happened in a meeting has you feeling a little off, but you can’t put your finger on why. Or maybe a comment in your online community has provoked a reaction in others that you can’t quite explain.

A wheel for how you feel…Plutchik’s 8 core emotions are listed in the 2nd wheel.
Image credit: Machine Elf 1735 https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Robert_Plutchik#/media/File:Plutchik-wheel.svg

Plutchik’s wheel of emotions describes eight primary emotions, which are grouped into opposites: sadness and joy, trust and disgust, fear and anger and surprise and anticipation. Each arm of the wheel goes from the low intensity form of the emotion at the outside edge of the wheel into the high intensity form in the centre – so acceptance becomes trust and then admiration.

Primary emotions can also be combined to create additional emotional combinations e.g. joy and trust result in love.

In addition to visualising the wheel in 2D, it can also be folded up into a 3D cone, which can help with visualising the inter-relationship and intensities of the emotions.

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Reading for Leading #22: Which of the 6 leadership styles do you use?

Which of the 6 leadership styles do you use?

Reading for Leading is a weekly leadership tip shared every Monday morning as a pithy suggestion, question or reflection. You can find the whole series here.

We often mistakenly believe that the leadership style shown by an individual is a result of her personality, rather than a choice that can be strategically changed depending on the project, team or organisation. Daniel Goleman, author of several books on emotional and social intelligence, describes 6 leadership styles revealed by a study of almost 4,000 senior executives.

One of these styles has the clearest overall benefit on organisational climate (defined by a range of factors including how flexible employees feel they are to get work done and how committed they are to doing so) while two of the styles have a negative overall effect.

6 leadership styles discussed by Daniel Goleman
Image credit: unknown (multiple sources)

 

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Reading for Leading #21: Exploring the identity we construct around our work

Exploring the identity we construct around our work

Reading for Leading is a weekly leadership tip shared every Monday morning as a pithy suggestion, question or reflection. You can find the whole series here.

Recently I’ve been taking a fascinating evening class that’s looking at our beliefs about identity – what it means to be who we are and how that causes us to successfully relate (or fail to connect) to others. One of the most striking exercises in the course so far asked us to look at the identity that we choose to construct for ourselves and explore how we feel when we examine those roles, choices and beliefs in more detail.

“Mum said that if the wind changes I’ll stay this way!”
Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/phild41/6209957186/

 

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Community Manager musings: Are community managers also social entrepreneurs?

Community manager musings is a series of occasional posts looking at the roles and skills of community managers – usually within science. 

Is this the street you’re walking down?
Image credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dweekly/63702022/

I love this post by Seth Godin that outlines 4 traits of entrepreneurs:

1. They make decisions.

2. They invest in activities and assets that aren’t a sure thing.

3. They persuade others to support a mission with a non-guaranteed outcome.

4. This one is the most amorphous, the most difficult to pin down and thus the juiciest: They embrace (instead of run from) the work of doing things that might not work.

 

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