TITLE: Leading at a Higher Level AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford DATE: June 08, 2007 12:24 PM DESC: ----- BODY: Last night my wife and I went to see a presentation by Ken Blanchard, author of many bestselling books on leadership, starting with The One Minute Manager. I previously blogged on his Leadership and the One-Minute Manager, and I very much enjoyed his Raving Fans. His talk was as good as advertised, full of great stories that made memorable a focused message: if you wish to excel, people and energy matter. If you have a chance to hear Blanchard speak, I encourage you to do so, with one small caveat. If you are averse to spiritual talk of any sort or prefer your professional talks not to mention God even in passing, then you may be turned off. I thought he did a pretty good job keeping faith out of the talk and focusing on how to lead and why. Certainly the books of his on management and leadership that I've read stay on topic, though I can't speak to his latest book. If you can look past an occasional bit of spirit talk, then Blanchard can probably psyche you up to be a better leader. And you are a leader if you see any part of your life to be about influencing others, whether you have an organizational role as leader or not. Teachers fit the definition, and I think that agile software developers do, too. I won't try to give a full accounting of the talk. You would be better served by reading Blanchard's books, which tend to be slim, fast reads. Here are a few takeaway points that seem applicable to my roles as software developer, teacher, and head of a university CS department: Right now my thoughts are on moments of truth. What are the moments of truth that my students experience? My faculty? My external customers? -----