Thursday, September 06, 2007

Does Most Leadership Suck – The Challenge List

10-Sept-07: More updates to the Challenge List.  If you have committed to writing a post for the Challenge, you still have time to get it on the list.  Send an e-mail of post a comment with a link and I'll add your post the next time I update the list.  And remember, the conversation depends on all of you tagging your favorite bloggers to participate.

9-Sept-07: More updates to the Challenge List.

7-Sept-07: More updates to the Challenge List.  If you would like to see your favorite blogger posted here, be sure to tag them with the challenge.

Take care all...


Earlier this week when I kicked off this Challenge, I thought I might get a few replies. Boy was I wrong. So far, I have had a ton of comments and over 22 posts and a commitment to many more.

Before I get to the list, let me say, two things have really surprised me. First, the range of response I have received. When I originally sent out the challenge, I purposefully tagged a variety of sites with vastly different audiences and backgrounds. If fact, as I have privately told many of you, the variety of Blogs was so broad I was afraid some Bloggers would feel the challenge was so far off their topic, that they would take it as pure spam. As it turned out, some of the best posts came from the most unlikely bloggers. Second, so many people who commented that they weren’t really into the “Leadership Thing” turned around and provided some of the clearest leadership thinking I have ever seen. People never cease to amaze me.

It has been a real pleasure getting to know so many people and I’m looking forward to hearing from the rest of you. To that end, and to keep this conversation going, I will be tagging bloggers for the remainder of the week. I encourage each of you to tag the bloggers you would like to include in the challenge; but please, no spamming.

There is no real order or arrangement to the Challenge List; it is more or less in the order that people have let me know they had written a post. If you can think of a better way to organize the list, post a comment and I will see what I can do.

THE CHALLENGE LIST: Update 7-Sept-07

Ernie A. Cevallos a.k.a. Perseus
Thoughts on Leadership

David B. Bohl
Slow Down Fast
Fulfillment and Leadership

Anita Pathik Law
Power of Our Way Blog
Does Most Leadership Suck?

How to be an Original
Does Your (Personal) Leadership Suck?

Carlon Hass
Possess Less Exist More
Does Your Leadership Suck?

Halina Goldstein
The Inner Travel Journal
If the World Didn’t Suck

Monday Morning Power
Attitude, the Ultimate Power
A Challenge on “Leadership”

A Miracle a Day
5 Reasons Why Companies Fail To Find Good Leaders

Deb Call
Spirit in Gear
Does Most Leadership Suck? Is That the Right Question?

Goodness Gracious
Leading the Way

Sam Chan
Acquire Wisdom and Live with Passion
Understanding Leadership and
The Art of Leadership

Alexys Fairfield
Unraveling the Spiritual Mystique

Jeffrey Phillips
Thinking Faster
Does Your Leadership "Suck"?

Barbara Sliter
No John Wayne Here...

Michael McKinney
Leadership Now
You Can Change

Judy Martin
The WorkLife Monitor
Delving into the Mind of a Leader

Jenny and Erin
Jenny and Erin
Top 10 Reasons being a Leader Sucks

Lisa Gates
Design Your Writing Life
What Sucks Leadership?

Heather Goldsmith
A Creative Journal
Leadership Prompt

Priscilla Palmer
Personal Development Demands Success
Leadership Tag

Donna Karlin
Fast Company Expert Blogs
Leadership: Acknowledging Leaders

Amusing My Genius
Why Most Leadership Sucks..Including Mine

Dr Hal
North Star Mental Fitness Blog
When Leaders Use the Prevent Defense

Daniel Sitter
Idea Sellers
The Role of Leadership in Selling

Martin Spernau
Tindertraum Weblog
All Leadership Sucks Including Mine

Don Simkovich
Hey Don
The Leadership Dilemma

Chris Marshall
Martial Development
You Have the Sensei You Deserve

Priscilla Palmer
Personal Development Demands Success
Good Leadership

Steve Roesler
All Things Workplace
Leadership All Week: Accepting the Challenge


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Take care and enjoy...



David B. Bohl at said...


Thanks for including my post.


Lisa Gates said...

John, what if your manifesto is a wikifesto?

John W. McKenna said...


I'm still trying to figure that one out. I've got some ideas though...

Take care...


Jean Browman--Stress To Power said...

On Priscilla Palmer's blog you wrote:


I think you can do better than that.

The challenge is not intended to encourage people to stand hidden in a crowd casting dispersions on others in leadership positions. In fact, none of the posts that people have written has taken that track.

Rather, this is a challenge to recognize “our” shortfalls as leaders so that we, each of us, might improve the lives of those who suffer under our leadership foibles.

Saying I would rather see recognize great leaders misses the point."

I think the problem is the way you worded your title. Why not just ask something like "How Can We Improve as Leaders?"

Okay, you might want something more attention-getting than that, but I think Priscilla is on the right track, focus on what we want, not on what we don't want. Yes, we need to be clear-sighted, and starting off in such a negative frame of mind is not the best way to do it.

BTW, people cast aspersions, not dispersions, on others.

That said, I'm one of the people who initially felt your invitation felt a bit like spam. It didn't seem to fit with what my site is about, but I'm glad I didn't go with that first reaction. You have generated a great conversation. I'll respond to it Monday in my weekly post at Cheerful Monk.

John W. McKenna said...


Thank you for the thoughtful comment. I look forward to reading your post on Monday. Also, thank you for the BTW. Sometimes having our errors pointed out carries a bit of a sting, but I appreciate your consideration. Honest critique is the answer to writing that sucks ;-)

Take care...


Malathy said...

This will offer an interesting read to many. But I would like to reserve my views on the issue in general. In my humble opinion:"yes, it sucks. so what?"

As long as I don't have leadership qualities, there is no point in passing any judgments.

Also, I hold this basic Law of Spiritulaity in high esteem."Everybody in this world is ignorant"

Priscilla Palmer said...

I have taken your challenge saying "I can do better than that". You can see my latest post here hopefully this is more like what you had in mind.

Robert said...

Leadership is an over-rated concept and is nothing more than a fresh coat of paint glossing over a rusted old car. Leadership is just another name for management. The same as a "pre-owned" vehicle is the same as a used car. I have worked in the "leadership" field for many years. I've read hundreds of books, attended a countless number of courses and seminars, and it's all a load of crap. You have management and you have employees. To think that you have a person or several people that you look to for answers that aren't your boss is rediculous. You have good managers and bad managers. Everyone has "leadership skills" to some extent. What does it mean? Nothing, because it's a hollow term used to placate people into following a certain set of corporate philosophies under the guise of leadership. Give me a break if you want Leadership learn to think for yourself because leadership is something that should be focused inward not outward.

Chris Marshall said...

Thanks for including me. I think your question is adequately addressed by the Peter Principle.

John W. McKenna said...


It sounds like you have a definite opinion about corporate/organizational leadership. What do you think about other forms of leadership: poltical, community, social or even idea leadership? Are these forms of management in disguise?

Think about it and consider taking the challenge to write a post on your blog.

Take care...


John W. McKenna said...


Yes, our old friend Peter is not likely to retire any time soon. But here is a different question. Do you think Peter was a competent leader before his last promotion? Has his leadership always sucked?

Let me know what you think.

Take care...


Chris Marshall said...

Was he competent before? According to the Principle, yes. However, there is an alternate theory that I as a software developer appreciate very much.

The Dilbert Principle states that, within any organization, the incompetent tend to be transferred to the location where they will do the least damage. In other words, out of Engineering and into Leadership. ;)

John W. McKenna said...


Dilbert is onto something there. However, I think it goes a little deeper than transferring the incompetent to where they will have the least impact.

We as an economy have a tendency to promote technicians into managerial positions based on their competence and success as technicians and then wonder why they don't do so well... In the end, we "remember" the incompetence as the driver for taking the person out of their zone of expertise.

Food for thought.

Take care...