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The next time I'm in a leadership role...

The next time I'm in a leadership role...


If you could get a mulligan and be able to repeat your leadership in a specific role, how would you change the way you operated? John Bell, former CEO of Jacobs Suchard, says on the LeadershipFreak blog that he has no regrets on strategy but would make these alterations in style:

–He would make work more fun, as he was too serious.

–He'd be just as competitive. But he would be less intense. "The desire to enjoy continued success along with the pressure to make the numbers, which was intense, pushed us," he says.

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–He would mentor more, spending more time with individuals.

–He would treat people the way they needed to be treated, rather than trying to treat everyone the same.

Beyond those main points, his advice for leaders includes:

–Deal with politics, but don't be political.

–Remember that the way you treat people has an impact on how they treat others.

–Never survive at the expense of others.

–Don't do more with less, which means cutting people. Do less better – prioritize. "Pick one mountain and get to the top first. Climb the next one, later," Mr. Bell says.

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About the Author
Management columnist

Harvey Schachter is a Kingston, Ont.-based writer specializing in management issues. He writes Monday Morning Manager and management book reviews for the print edition of Report on Business and an online column, Power Points. More

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