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Our thinking and leadership insight is gaining attention in the media

Telegraph Interview 20.06.2016

Business Reporter Interview with Oxford Leadership’s Founder, Brian Bacon on “Leadership for the Fourth Industrial Revolution”

A ‘living research’ project conducted by Oxford Leadership shows that the leaders who are succeeding in this ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’ have embraced a new mind-set, viewing the organisation as a living organism or eco-system, rather than as a mechanical machine.

By studying the leadership practices, culture and ‘ways of working’ of several of the world’s largest corporations for the past 5 years, Oxford Leadership has found the critical leadership factors to be those which encourage organisational adaptability, speed and agility. The study shows that leaders who have most effectively adapted their organisations to embrace disruptive technologies and new business models, have challenged the organisational status quo, defined a clear and common purpose and focused on creating the conditions for speed, agility and flexibility in the organisation.

Watch the Interview » 

 

“Intuitive Leaders” – Article in Managing Partner magazine

Do you trust your gut when it comes to strategic decisions? 
Brian Bacon discusses why leaders need intuitive intelligence.

Instincts and ‘hunches’ may have a comforting influence on day-to-day decisions, but when it comes to major strategic choices and matters of great complexity, intuition doesn’t often get a seat in the C-suite.

Leaders are more likely to rely on hard evidence and data, logic and rational analysis to support their biggest and most important decisions. However, recent insights and discoveries in the field of neuroscience have given new importance and credibility to the role of intuition in leadership, especially when it comes to decision making.

Intuitive intelligence has been treated as one of the most important leadership areas in developing the strategic skills of senior management in some of the world’s largest corporations (including Telefonica, BASF and Metro AG).

So, why is intuitive intelligence a critical factor in leadership development and how can you develop it?

Register with www.managingpartner.com and read the full article here »

 

Leadership Lessons from Nelson Mandela

Brian Bacon discusses inspiration, commitment, character and resolve but says great leaders should develop other great leaders.

Two big leadership lessons can be drawn from observation of Nelson Mandela’s life and time in history. The first lesson is that it takes more than a single heroic leader at the top to change the trajectory of an institution, or a nation. The second lesson is that in leadership, character is always more important than strategy.

Lesson 1: It takes more than a single heroic leader at the top to change the trajectory of an institution, or a nation.

Even with one of the world’s most courageous and charismatic leaders at the helm, it takes more than a single generation to move the majority of a population from poverty to middle class. To transform a nation (or any large enterprise for that matter), inspiring leaders, who accept absolute personal responsibility for transforming themselves, their work, their community and the nation are needed at every level, not only at the top.

Nearly 20 years after the end of the brutal and racist apartheid regime, South Africa’s citizens are still searching for a new leadership model to carry forward Nelson Mandela’s ideals amid a host of mounting problems, including rampant government corruption, an unemployment rate nearing 40 per cent, poor public education, and high rates of poverty and HIV and AIDS. These challenges won’t be solved by lofty top-down leadership, however inspiring. They can only be met by leaders with fierce resolve to tackle corruption and develop leaders who will make things happen at EVERY level of every institution in the nation.

Although he is revered today (and rightly so) as the most important leader of the anti-apartheid struggle, I doubt Mandela will be remembered in history as a great transformer, simply because he failed to deliver social and economic rights to the majority of the people. Many studies show that black South Africans are actually worse off economically now than they were under apartheid. The rich have become richer and the poor poorer. For all of his great successes, what Nelson Mandela failed to do was to develop leaders around him who were as big morally, or even bigger than he was. His legacy will be tainted by the culture of greed and corruption rampant within the ANC at most levels today. Mandela can’t be blamed directly for that culture, but he can be criticised for not speaking out as senior ANC figures enriched themselves at the expense of the poorest in South Africa.

The fact is, when he stepped down from office and eventually left politics, the institutions Nelson Mandela led became less. They’ve struggled ever since and still haven’t found their formula. Great leaders develop great leaders, so that when they leave, the institution (or the nation) becomes more, not less. Like Mandela, other great, charismatic leaders of the last century such as Mother Theresa, Mahatma Gandhi and Martin Luther King can inspire us to towering heights personally, but they do not provide us with a useful template for institutional transformation. When their time was up and they moved on, their institutions became less, not more. The most important legacy of a great leader is to leave behind even greater leaders who continue on and take the institution to the next level.

To read the full article click here »

 

European Gas & Oil 01.11.13

Senior managers in the maritime sector can benefit from using intuitive intelligence in leadership. Brian Bacon explains the principles.

Instincts and ‘hunches’ may have a comforting influence on day-to-day decisions, but when it comes to major strategic choices and matters of great complexity, intuition doesn’t often get a seat in the C-suite.

Leaders are more likely to rely on hard evidence and data, logic and rational analysis to support their biggest and most important decisions. However, recent insights and discoveries in the field of neuroscience have given new importance and credibility to the role of intuition in leadership, especially when it comes to decision making.

Intuitive intelligence has been treated as one of the most important leadership areas in developing the strategic skills of senior management in some of the world’s largest corporations (including Telefonica, BASF and Metro AG).

So, why is intuitive intelligence a critical factor in leadership development and how can you develop it?

To read the full article click here »

 

Director Magazine 11.10.2013

How well do you trust your gut instinct? Especially when it comes to making the biggest business decisions? Having a hunch, or a feeling that something isn’t quite right can have some impact on day-to-day decisions, but when it comes to making strategic decisions, a hunch is unlikely to get a look in.

Business leaders are more inclined to call on tangible evidence, hard data, and in-depth analysis to reach their most important decisions. However, research into the way the brain behaves during those critical ‘Eureka’ moments, the outcome of major decisions, has led to a rethink about the importance of intuition, or ‘intuitive intelligence’, in leadership, especially when it comes to making the most critical choices.

One of the hallmarks of effective leadership is the ability to make consistently good decisions, very quickly. The great leaders who make them do so because they are acutely aware of everything going on around them and can see the whole picture. In the words of Einstein they ‘get off the dance floor and stand on the balcony to see what is really going on’.

Simply put, intuitive intelligence is the ability to understand and interpret context in order to make those reliably good decisions on which business success depends. In fact, many leadership experts now see intuitive intelligence as one of the most powerful tools in business decision-making.

To read the full article click here »

 

Charity Finance 01.09.2013

Until they find the right formula for how to behave in meetings, most leadership teams remain dysfunctional, asserts Brian Bacon.

The success of any leadership team is evidenced by how effectively it manages meetings.

Other contributory factors to team performance may include: how a team deals with critical issues; how it comes to conclusions and makes decisions; how work is assigned; how conflict is resolved; and how members are held accountable.

All of this is determined by how interactions occur; ie how people talk with each other before, during and after their meetings.

Having studied the interaction and behaviours of some of the world’s best leadership teams over 20 years, the Oxford Leadership Academy has identified the defining norms of high-performing, top-management team meetings, which I outline in this article.

To read the full article click here »

 

Bdaily Business Network 27.08.2013

Why business must accept a greater sense of responsibility for the whole.

Industrial societies are in search of a ‘new purpose’ and CSR is part of the emerging new story for business leaders.

Global mega challenges such as environmental sustainability, aging population, youth unemployment, debt addiction and the increasing marginalisation of people & culture, have caused big-picture thought leaders to question the validity of ‘exponential economic growth’ as either a meaningful purpose or a viable option for a modern society. In recent years we have suffered through several examples of global system failure, including the global economic crisis.

Increasingly suspicious of big business, consumers and legislators alike have repudiated the old idea that the business of business is (only) business. There is increasing recognition that business, now the most powerful force influencing human civilisation, must accept a greater sense of responsibility for the whole. Companies that don’t ‘get-it’ get punished by consumers, the media and by law.

Those that embrace it authentically usually benefit from increased customer loyalty, improved employee engagement, better talent attraction & retention and an improved bottom line.   

Consequently, most business leaders today probably do acknowledge (perhaps hesitantly) some sort of responsibility for stewardship for the earth and human society, yet most struggle with how best to act on this in a meaningful way. Beyond the rhetoric, for the sustainability movement to continue, CSR practices have to be made easier for every business to adopt, not just the early adopters and a zealous minority. Any likelihood of long term viability of the economy, our communities and the environment all hinge on our ability to make sustainable practices mainstream.

To read the full article click here »

 

Leadership lessons from Nelson Mandela’s life

Two big leadership lessons can be drawn from observation of Nelson Mandela’s life and time in history. The first lesson is that it takes more than a single heroic leader at the top to change the trajectory of an institution, or a nation. The second lesson is that in leadership, character is always more important than strategy.

Lesson #1: It takes more than a single heroic leader at the top to change the trajectory of an institution, or a nation.

Even with one of the world’s most courageous and charismatic leaders at the helm, it takes more than a single generation to move the majority of a population from poverty to middle class. To transform a nation (or any large enterprise for that matter), inspiring leaders, who accept absolute personal responsibility for transforming themselves, their work, their community and the Nation are needed at every level, not only at the top.  Nearly 20 years after the end of the brutal and racist apartheid regime, South Africa’s citizens are still searching for a new leadership model to carry forward Nelson Mandela’s ideals amid a host of mounting problems, including rampant government corruption, an unemployment rate nearing 40 percent, poor public education, and high rates of poverty and HIV and AIDS.  These challenges won’t be solved by lofty top-down leadership, however inspiring. They can only be met by leaders with fierce resolve to tackle corruption and develop leaders who will make things happen at EVERY level of every institution in the nation

To read the full article click here »

 

Information Today 09.07.2013

Mastering the mystery of meetings.

A defining characteristic of a high performing team is how its members behave before, during and after meetings.

The success of a team is evidenced by how efficiently it manages meetings

Trust, respect and communication are the essential foundation stones of a high performing team.  Although it is nice if team members actually like each other, it is not essential.  However, trust, respect and good communication are vital.  Although each team is unique, there are certain things high performing teams do – before, during and after a meeting – that lead to breakthrough performance.

To read the full article click here »

 

HR Zone 14.06.2013

The importance of behaviour.

Until they find the right formula for how to behave and talk with each other in meetings, most leadership teams remain dysfunctional. According to Brian Bacon, Chairman and Founder of the Oxford Leadership Academy, a defining characteristic of a high performing team is how they behave before, during and after their meetings.

“If you had to identify, in one word, the reason why the human race has not achieved, and never will achieve, its full potential, that word would be ‘meetings’” – Dave Barry

The success of a team is evidenced by how efficiently it manages meetings: in essence, a team’s performance is determined by how well it prepares, conducts and follows through on meetings. Other contributory factors to team performance include: how a team deals with critical issues, how it comes to conclusions and makes decisions, how work is assigned, how conflict is resolved and how members are held accountable. All of this is determined by how interaction occurs, i.e. how people talk with each before, during and after their meetings.

To read the full article click here »

 

HR Zone, 6th June 2013

The place of intuition in business.

Can you think of an occasion where you’ve had a gut feeling that something wasn’t right about a significant business issue but didn’t listen to your intuition and later regretted it? Do you often doubt your intuition in favour of hard evidence to support your business decision? If so, you may be underutilising one of the most powerful leadership tools, your intuitive intelligence.

We use our instinct and intuition in many facets of our lives. It may be one thing to do so in your personal life – but perhaps quite another to use it at work?

Many people may feel that intuition has little or no place in business, that decisions should be based on empirical evidence rather than on trusting your gut feeling. But there is increasing evidence that intuition is more than merely a feeling. Many scientists now believe that it is, in fact, the result of our brains piecing together information and experiences to come to different, and less obvious solutions and conclusions. Publications, such as ‘Intelligent Memory: Improve the Memory That Makes You Smarter,’ by neuroscientist Barry Gordon, show that decision-making and intuition are inextricably linked.

To read the full article click here »

 

Bdaily Business Network, 5th June 2013

Intuitive Intelligence in Leadership.

Do you trust your gut when it comes to the big stuff? Instincts and ‘hunches’ may have a comforting influence on day-to-day decisions, but when it comes to major strategic choices and matters of great complexity, intuition doesn’t often get a seat in the C-Suite.

Leaders are more likely to rely on hard evidence and data, logic and rational analysis to support their biggest and most important decisions. However, recent insights and discoveries in the field of neuroscience have given new importance and credibility to the role of intuition in leadership, especially when it comes to decision-making.

In developing the strategic skills of senior management in the corporate universities of several of the world’s largest corporations, (e.g. Telefonica, BASF, Metro AG), the Oxford Leadership Academy rates ‘intuitive intelligence’ as one of the most important areas of leadership development.

Brian Bacon, Chairman and Founder of Oxford Leadership, discusses how they develop the intuitive intelligence of leaders and why it is a critical factor in leadership development.

To read the full article click here »

"For many organisations, this is becoming a burning issue. They understand the need to transform, but their... https://t.co/7suH8sI6DK