Daniel Boyer

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The Most Common Type of Incompetent Leader

A young friend recently remarked that the worst boss he ever had would provide him with feedback that always consisted of “You’re doing a great job.” But they both knew it wasn’t true — the organization was in disarray, turnover was excessive, and customers were not happy. My friend was giving it …

Leadership

How to Save a Meeting That’s Gotten Tense

On March 30, 2017, Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams stood in front of crowd of over 1,000 angry citizens. McAdams had recently floated the idea of situating a new homeless resource center in Draper, a city 20 miles south of Salt Lake City, Utah. What began as an orderly public meeting soon …

To Handle Increased Stress, Build Your Resilience

Wherever you live or work, stress is on the rise. According to the International Labour Organization, workers in developed and developing countries …

How to Increase Your Influence at Work

To be effective in organizations today, you must be able to influence people. Your title alone isn’t always enough to sway others, nor do you always …

The Two Traits of the Best Problem-Solving Teams

Imagine you are a fly on the wall in a corporate training center where a management team of 12 is participating in a session on executing strategy. The team is midway through attempting to solve a new, uncertain, and complex problem. The facilitators look on as at first the exercise follows its …

Management

How to Work for a Boss Who Lacks Self-Awareness

Just as people differ in height, musical talent, and sense of humor, there are pretty consistent differences in their ability to understand how others see them. Such differences are usually attributed to their self-awareness, though a more appropriate name for this ability would be <i>other-</i>awareness: …

How Fear Helps (and Hurts) Entrepreneurs

Fear of failure stalks the world of the entrepreneur, from losing key clients to running out of money. For entrepreneurs, courage is not the absence of fear, but the ability to persist in spite of it. These fears are well-founded: Studies suggest that roughly 75% of ventures fail within 10 years …

What Makes Entrepreneurs Burn Out

By now we are all familiar with the risks of burnout. Research shows that it leads to work-related issues such as job dissatisfaction, absenteeism, inefficient decision making, and turnover, as well as health-related issues such as depression, heart disease, and even death. Research also reveals …

When Your Boss Has an Angry Outburst, What Do They Do Next?

Many of us have had a bad workplace interaction with a boss — for example, being yelled at or sworn at in front of others, receiving no credit for work that required serious effort or extra hours, or being humiliated for a past mistake. At best, such experiences can be frustrating and demotivating; …

How to Welcome an Employee Back from Medical Leave

Employees take leaves of absence for all sorts of reasons, from dealing with a cancer diagnosis to caring for a sick child. In one survey, 13% of U.S. employees reported taking time off under the Family and Medical Leave Act in the past 12 months.<p>When the employee comes back to the office, of …

To Take Charge of Your Career, Start by Building Your Tribe

Show me a person who sees uncertainty as opportunity, and I’ll show you a person who has mastered the new world of work.<p>A person like Juliet (not her real name), for example, who described a stressful stretch of her career as “disgustingly exciting.”<p>Juliet had left full-time employment in the …

The Ultimate Guide to Cold Emailing

Cold emailing is harder than most communication for two reasons. You have no relationship with your audience yet, and you lack non-verbal feedback, …

Why Email Is So Stressful, Even Though It’s Not Actually That Time-Consuming

It’s easy to feel overwhelmed with the crush of email. In fact, one study showed the average professional spends 4.1 hours per day responding to work messages. During a recent time tracking exercise, I discovered I’m actually at the low end of the spectrum, spending about 1.35 hours per day on …

Information Overload

4 Ways to Deal With a Toxic Coworker

Lately, we have been hearing a lot from our clients about “toxic” coworkers and teammates. This issue isn’t new; there have been bad coworkers since the beginning of organized work. But these days, their impact feels bigger and more destructive. Businesses need teamwork to function. And teams need …

Leadership

You May Be a Workaholic If

<b>Nancy Rothbard,</b> a professor of management at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, draws a distinction between workaholism and working long hours. She explains the health consequences of being addicted to your work. She also gives practical advice for managing work addiction, whether …

Time Management

Track Your Time for 30 Days. What You Learn Might Surprise You.

It’s hard to know if we’re really making efficient use of our time. It seems like we’re working hard — and we’re certainly stressed out. But are we spending our time on the right things? That’s the question I set out to solve at the start of this year. I was feeling overwhelmed after spending the …

Time Management

The Future of Human Work Is Imagination, Creativity, and Strategy

It seems beyond debate: Technology is going to replace jobs, or, more precisely, the <i>people</i> holding those jobs. Few industries, if any, will be untouched.<p>Knowledge workers will not escape. Recently, the CEO of Deutsche Bank predicted that half of its 97,000 employees could be replaced by robots. One …

Goal Setting

How to Recover from a Cultural Faux Pas

We’ve all been there: You’re talking to someone from another culture — perhaps while on a business trip or working with a colleague on a project — when you get a sinking feeling that you’ve made a mistake. Maybe it was a joke that misfired, an unintentional violation of personal space, or a …

How You Promote People Can Make or Break Company Culture

Managing promotions effectively is one of the most powerful ways leaders can drive their company’s success. We surveyed over 400,000 U.S. workers in the past year and found that when people believe promotions are managed effectively, they’re more than twice as likely to give extra effort at work …

When an Email Exchange Turns Ugly

It was Monday morning, and Lee opened his inbox to find an email from his manager: “Lee, I’ve decided to have Carlos present to the governing board, instead of you. I’m sure you’re good with this.”<p>Lee had spent the entire weekend preparing for the presentation. Not only did he know the numbers …

FaceTime

How to Establish Values on a Small Team

When Tony Hsieh, founder of Zappos, was asked what he’d do differently if he could restart his company from scratch, he responded with this: “If I could go back and do Zappos all over again I would actually come up with our values from day one.”<p>Developing your corporate values early in your …

What Self-Awareness Really Is (and How to Cultivate It)

Self-awareness seems to have become the latest management buzzword — and for good reason. Research suggests that when we see ourselves clearly, we are more confident and more creative. We make sounder decisions, build stronger relationships, and communicate more effectively. We’re less likely to …

Leadership

Why Elon Musk’s Compensation Plan Wouldn’t Work for Most Executives

Elon Musk’s new pay package has attracted almost as much divided opinion as Elon Musk himself. Advocates have claimed that it is “radical” and “bold,” praise often used to describe Tesla. Others argue that it is a publicity stunt. But, as with most things, the reality is likely in between these …

Why We Should Be Disagreeing More at Work

When I worked as a management consultant, I had a client that I thought of as difficult. Let’s call her Marguerite. She and I didn’t see eye to eye on much. I disagreed with the direction she was taking our project, the people she chose to involve, and the pace at which she thought we should do our …

Leadership

How to Build Trust with Colleagues You Rarely See

When you exchange pleasantries with a co-worker in the elevator, the two of you are building trust. When you stop by a colleague’s office and see their family photographs on a desk, you learn about that person’s life outside the office and, as a result, usually feel closer. Face-to-face meetings, …

4 Habits of People Who Are Always Learning New Skills

Working in online learning, I’ve found that every year around this time there’s a burst of sign-ups from workers seeking new skills. Perhaps it’s a matter of New Year’s resolutions, or a reaction to seeing their friends and colleagues make big career changes each January.<p>Unfortunately, the initial …

Amazon Web Services

There Are 4 Types of Managers. One Is More Effective Than the Others

In a utopian corporate world, managers lavish a constant stream of feedback on their direct reports. This is necessary, the thinking goes, because organizations and responsibilities are changing rapidly, requiring employees to constantly upgrade their skills. Indeed, the desire for frequent …

Employment

Why the Most Productive People Don’t Always Make the Best Managers

When a company needs a supervisor for a team, senior leaders often anoint the team’s most productive performer. Some of these stars succeed in their new role as manager; many others do not. And when they fail, they tend to leave the organization, costing the company double: Not only has the team …

Leadership

Do Entrepreneurs Need a Strategy?

As a start-up, RapidSOS was an easy sell: It would bring 911 calls into the smartphone age. Emergency-response systems had evolved in a premobile era, which meant that few of them could accurately identify the location of callers who were using mobile phones, compromising response times and medical …

How to Give Employees Structure Without Stifling Them

Leaders know they need to give people room to be their best, to pursue unconventional ideas, and to make smart decisions in the moment. It’s been said so often that it’s a cliché. But here’s the problem: Executives have trouble resolving the tension between employee empowerment and operational …