Procrastination and Creativity

It is not OK to miss deadlines. It is also not OK to meet a deadline by impacting negatively on quality. How I learnt to balance impatience to produce results with a need to focus on the quality of the outcome.


During the early start of my professional career, I gave a lot of value to get things done fast.  I was an impatient operator whose only focus was execution with acceptable results.  Now, ‘acceptable’ is very subjective word that can have a lot of different meanings depending of the one who use it.  Later I found out that acceptable results often lead to rework. Continue reading “Procrastination and Creativity”

Dreams I Dream for my Daughter. A Successful Business Woman.

In this article I share my personal perspective of women as professionals and what I dream for my daughter’s future in business. I want her to be respected by others for what she is, for what she knows and for her to become a successful business woman. That is the dream I dream for her!

The future of children is every parent’s lifetime project. In this article I share a short story about my Mom, the dreams I have for my daughter and how this is linked to my leadership style and women in the workforce.

Continue reading “Dreams I Dream for my Daughter. A Successful Business Woman.”

Leadership Interview: Hans Augusteijn ‘My Coaching Journey’

We follow the fortunes of a senior leader in Northern Europe over a three year period as he learns and applies his newly acquired coaching skills and ends up a senior director spreading the coaching gospel to his direct report leaders.

I first started working with the Top Team at Maersk Northern Europe Liner Operations Cluster (NEULOC) in Rotterdam when I visited them to kick off the Coaching Master Class program in December 2012. At that time Hans Augusteijn was a Senior General Manager, a member of the senior management team and starting out on his coaching journey. Here he reflects on that journey three years on. What has he learned along the way? What can we learn from his experiences?

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Change Leadership: The Eternal Search for Emotional Balance

How does the leader help their team see positive opportunities and embrace organisational change? Here is a simple model to help team members better understand their emotions, evaluate options, achieve emotional balance and make choices on the way forward.


I was sleeping last night when I suddenly woke up at 2 am and started thinking about the first team meeting that I planned to do next morning with my newly appointed unit of operational execution.  I was debating with myself of the best way of making them embrace change and achieve emotional balance. How could they achieve improvement and take ownership as leaders of the change we, as a team, wanted for our professional career and life enjoyment.  How could I explain to them that is good to have problems because this would become our driver that will make us feel so uncomfortable that we would be 100% convinced of the need of change for us?

Continue reading “Change Leadership: The Eternal Search for Emotional Balance”

Leadership Interview: Morten Mortensen ‘Checking the Temperature of Employee Response to Change’

Successful leaders recognise they have a crucial role to play during organisational change.

The recognised wisdom about organisational change is that we do not change people – they choose to change for their own reasons. This means the unit of change in this process is ONE. It is not about one-way briefings or team sessions – it is about the individual. This means the ‘real’ dialogue about change is about ‘What’s in it for me’ (WIIFM) and takes place in private in short structured sessions between a colleague and his/her Leader. In 2013 I interviewed Morten Mortensen, APALOC Head of Contract Management for Maersk Singapore, about how he was coaching for change leadership and checking the temperature of employee response to change.

Continue reading “Leadership Interview: Morten Mortensen ‘Checking the Temperature of Employee Response to Change’”

Chilcot Report: Decision Making Lessons for Leaders

There are decision making lessons for leaders in the Chilcot Report into the 2003 Iraq war which has been published this week. I map these lessons back to key leadership competencies and look at Judgement, Execution & Influence.

Parliamentary copyright images are reproduced with the permission of Parliament.


This is the week that the long awaited Chiclot Report was published. Sir John Chilcot has presented his findings on the UK’s involvement in the 2003 Iraq War. The report covers UK government policy decisions made between 2001 and 2009. There are hard lessons to be learned from this report for politicians, their advisers and civil servants. I have taken a look at key findings and asked what leaders can learn from them.

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The Collaborative Leader: Learning from the World of Theatre

What can a Business Leader learn from the role of a Theatre Director?


Have you ever wondered how a Theatre Director brings together a cast of often high ego actors to deliver an excellent production? A Theatre Director can often be like a new Leader: pulling together a disparate group of people that they may not have had any say in the selection of. Here we look at seven key principles of how a Theatre Director works with a company of actors which apply equally to how a Business Leader works within an organisation.

Continue reading “The Collaborative Leader: Learning from the World of Theatre”

Battle readiness. How can leader know the team is ready? And more importantly, how to ensure we are ready?

Translating strategy into operational reality; breaking down strategic priorities or business initiatives into key tasks and identifying accountabilities; establishing communication channels, capacity, processes, resources and systems to ensure effective implementation and delivery of business goals; tracking progress.

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In my previous post ‘Is impossible a fact or an opinion?‘ I wrote about arousing the earnest desire to win and that ‘impossible’, in the context of aiming higher, is an opinion! In business we often use armies or sports analogies when devising strategies to make it ‘catchy’ to our people. After all, we cannot win without the support and engagement of people. A leader succeeding without its people is the part where to me ‘impossible’ become a fact.

Last week it was commemorated the centenary of ‘the battle of the Somme’ and I thought ‘Battle readiness’ could be a handy topic for my next post.

Continue reading “Battle readiness. How can leader know the team is ready? And more importantly, how to ensure we are ready?”

Preparing & Planning for Coaching – 2

Need some inspiration on preparing for a forthcoming coaching session. Coaching doesn’t just happen. Get more value out of your coaching by asking your Coachee to prepare ahead of the session. There is preparation that you, as the Coach, can do. This was covered in the blog post ‘Preparing & Planning for Coaching’ from May. This is about preparation you can ask your direct report coachee to do. I’ve prepared a list to inspire you. Now you add to the list with your comments and inspire others.


What are the factors you need to consider when preparing for running a coaching session or series of coaching sessions with a direct report? Unless it’s a coaching on demand session, coaching doesn’t just happen. This means there is preparation for both of you to do ahead of the coaching session. This article covers the preparation you can ask your Coachee to do. An earlier article – ‘Preparing & Planning for Coaching’ from May – covered your preparation as the Coach.

Continue reading “Preparing & Planning for Coaching – 2”

Executive Presence

Executive Presence is about conveying a leadership image that commands respect and attention from others. How does a leader achieve this presence or gravitas?


Executive Presence is about conveying a leadership image that commands respect and attention from others. Leaders who display this know how to react when confronted with challenging situations. They are calm and measured. Passionate yet deliberate. Engaging and focussed. They inspire their peers and subordinates. They are in control of themselves and assert their intentions. How does a leader achieve this presence or gravitas?

Continue reading “Executive Presence”