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Ujima Donalson

A Note from Ujima Donalson,
POD Director

Too often, leaders shortchange themselves. We find ourselves having to meet obligations and manage relationships on all sides—“down” to our employees, “across” to colleagues on the management team, and “up” to our own boss and perhaps even others at higher levels across the University.

With demands in all directions, we often choose to take the hit ourselves, forfeiting lunch plans, taking work home, putting off an important task yet again. Taking the hit can mean not disappointing someone else, not having to renegotiate a commitment with a staff member or colleague, or not having to explain—or stick up for—ourselves and our needs. Our natural inclinations in the moment can have a detrimental effect over time. Read more

"The key is not to prioritize what's on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities." ~ Stephen Covey

Jim Benson

Personal Kanban: Lean Thinking for Leaders

Jim Benson, Modus Cooperandi

In Lean management, inventory is considered waste; for individuals, our backlog is our inventory.  The trick is to carry just the right amount of inventory to create value, without having the overhead of keeping track of a massive catalog. Most leaders carry a seemingly infinite and ever-growing backlog of demands and obligations—and the scope and shape of their work is poorly understood.

  • Leaders have commitments to staffing, vision, financials, regulators, ongoing projects, and the inevitable unexpected emergencies that eat up valuable time. Since this work is not tangible—leaders don’t build tangible objects like cars or houses—leaders may feel that others don’t understand the volume or scope of work they’re exposed to.
  • For their part, leaders often don’t have an objective view of their own work. Valuable options are often left unexplored, while hours are wasted in unproductive meetings or chasing dead ends. This leads to frustration because leaders’ time is valuable and actionable information is scarce. Read more

"Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task." ~ William James

Ask an Expert: Self-Care for Leaders

Debrena Jackson Gandy, Masterminds

Question: Given that I’ve been working especially hard over the past few years, with no raises in sight, what can I do to replenish myself? How can I justify rewarding myself, and what are some easy self-care practices?

Over more than 20 years of having a passion for self-care—leading seminars, keynotes, and other events on self-care and experiencing the profound difference self-care has made for me and thousands of others—it has become increasingly apparent to me that self-care holds the key to leading a joyful and fulfilling life.

Self-care is not only one of the cornerstones of a joyful life, it is also a cornerstone of effective leadership. Although it may seem counter-intuitive, leaders who are good at tending to themselves are, in turn, better at tending to their employees, to their organization, and to any challenges that arise in their work. For many, genuine and enduring self-care requires a tremendous shift; self-care is a specific orientation to living your life and is based in a commitment to turning inwardly first. Read more

"You're the one who creates speed, because you're the one who allows stuff to enter your life." ~ David Allen

Show Your Support for Your Support Staff

Behind every great manager or team, there’s usually a great staff member (or two or ten) hard at work. If you’re looking for an opportunity to return the favor, consider sending one or more of the administrative support staff members in your office to Support Professionals Development Day on Thursday, September 6.

The event fee of $155 days covers one half-day workshop in the morning, two shorter workshops in the afternoon, a continental breakfast, lunch, and a variety of snacks throughout the day. Sessions cover organizational techniques, dealing with difficult people, avoiding burnout, facilitating meetings, and more. This event also provides staff with a special day away from the office and a chance to connect with other UW employees.

"To free us from the expectations of others, to give us back to ourselves—there lies the great, singular power of self-respect." ~ Joan Didion

Consulting Alliance Update

Kim Delaney, Consultation Services Coordinator

As mentioned in the Leading Edge last fall, our most recent RFQQ process for the University Consulting Alliance brought in dozens of new consultants. The Alliance now offers more than sixty consultants, and the field of available experts has deepened in areas of keen interest to UW leaders, including process improvement, strategic planning, mediation, and leadership coaching.

Along with the new consultants, the Alliance includes POD’s internal consultants, as well as other external consultants who have worked with the Alliance in recent years and were rescreened as part of the RFQQ process.

Profiles for our consultants can be found online and include the following experienced external consultants who have joined the Alliance since last fall:

  • Roger Baker
  • BerryDunn
  • CPS HR Consulting
  • Communication Resources NW
  • Mark Craemer
  • Demarche Consulting Group
  • ETI Group
  • Paul Figueroa
  • Flexsource
  • GroupWyse
  • Lynn Hagerman Associates
  • Phillip Heller
  • Debrena Jackson Gandy
  • Karen Kane
  • Dan Kaufman
  • Richard Kramer
  • Marguerite Langlois
  • Richard Lynch
  • Online Business Systems
  • Kim Sklaroff
  • Scontrino Powell
  • Steven Soltar
  • Workplace Resolutions

Professional & Organizational Development, Box 359487, Seattle, WA 98105
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