When just playing defense isn't enough

In October 2008, Fred Tomczyk spent his first month as TD Ameritrade’s CEO under fire. He found himself running the financial services firm amid a punishing global economic crisis. But rather than retreat into survival mode, he decided to overhaul the firm’s business model.  Read More.


Step one in leading a new staff? Get everyone's names down fast—and use them. Addressing someone by name within a few days of shaking their hand for the first time sends the message that you care who works for you, and that you see all employees as individuals worthy of connecting with. It's an especially meaningful gesture to those a few notches down the corporate ladder.


Ask "Z"

Ask "Z"

Thanks boss, that's far, far more than I needed to know

Q. An employee here seems unusually comfortable disclosing personal issues she’s facing. She regales everyone about her former battle with alcoholism, for example. Should I shut this down? It seems inappropriate.

Leadership Library: Weekly Feature

Leadership Library: Weekly Feature

Hire Tough, Manage Easy

Hiring and retaining great employees is the #1 most critical factor in the success of you and your organization. But how do you identify who will be the winners from who will be the whiners? And once you hire the winners, how do you motivate and retain them? Watch the video now.

Kevin Eikenberry

Remarkable Leadership with Kevin

On Silos and Accountability

I was at my farm recently, and I was looking at the silo you see a picture of here. Erected in 1979, it was the “Cadillac” of structures of its type. Today, the entire silo business is nonexistent. The change is a story largely of the modern dairy (and to a lesser degree hog) farm. As the farms get larger and the organizations more complex, the silo can’t play a role. As big as they are (this one, 20 feet across and 60 feet tall), they just aren’t large enough. The silo business in agriculture is all but over. In the rest of the world, however, silos are alive and well in organizations everywhere. You know what I mean. There is the sales silo, the marketing silo, the manufacturing silo, the IT silo. There is also the first shift silo, the second shift silo and much more. Do I need to go on? What can we take from this situation — “real” silos losing favor, but organizational ones alive and well? Let’s see what we can see.

Best of the Blogs

Best of the Blogs

Can money trigger true contentment?

Michael Norton and Elizabeth Dunn, co-authors of Happy Money, asked a group of high-net-worth individuals how much wealth it would take to trigger true contentment.

Program on Negotiation at Harvard Law School

Negotiation Coach

Moving from 'should' to 'could'

Q: During a private conversation with a friend who works in my industry, I learned confidential information that will put my small company at risk of considerable loss if it reaches agreement in an ongoing negotiation with another small company. What should I do?

Marie McIntyre, Ph.D.

Ask the Workplace Coach

'Go complain to HR'? But it's HR that caused my problem!

Q: “Our human resources manager recently said I should consider seeing a therapist because I might be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. Last year was difficult because my husband lost his job, then was diagnosed with cancer. I was appalled by her suggestion and told her that she was completely out of line. A few weeks later, she emailed me to say that she felt we did not finish our conversation and was open to talking if I was interested. I did not reply, and now she will barely acknowledge me. I really don’t care, but it’s somewhat awkward because we work in a small company.” Insulted

Now is the time to get organized

Dec. 22, 2014

With the holidays upon us, it’s time to tie up loose ends and get ready for the new year. Here's how.

Run meetings the right way

Dec. 18, 2014

You can waste many hours of precious time if you don’t run a tight business meeting. Here are five ways to do it right.

BlackBerry bounces back from near-dead

Dec. 17, 2014

In 2013, BlackBerry was bordering on bankruptcy. Now it’s surprising many of its critics by showing signs of a dramatic turnaround under its new CEO, John Chen.

Does 'stack ranking' actually work?

Dec. 16, 2014

This controversial approach to performance evaluation requires that supervisors group employees from top to bottom. The CEO of Nielsen Holdings remains a fan.