64 episodes

Concise lessons in leadership in a world of chaos. Hosted by Ian McClean, leadership expert and founder of Flow Group and GreenLine Conversations.

Leadership in Chaos Ian McClean

    • Business
    • 5.0 • 9 Ratings

Concise lessons in leadership in a world of chaos. Hosted by Ian McClean, leadership expert and founder of Flow Group and GreenLine Conversations.

    EP 63: Resist Temptation – Minimise Distraction

    EP 63: Resist Temptation – Minimise Distraction

    “The most scarce resource in the world today is attention” – Yuval Noah Harari 
     
    The only 2 industries that refer to customers as “users” are Big Tech and drug cartels.
    We live in an increasingly technology-fuelled Garden of Eden – an attention economy where the most sophisticated dark forces are constantly, covertly intent at work to distract you.
    If time is your most precious asset as a leader, then saving and spending it wisely becomes paramount.
    Your old biological defences are hardly sea-worthy any longer and in this age of fierce clandestine competition for your attention, you’re gonna need a bigger boat (or at least a better way to navigate!) to stay afloat.
     
     
    Insights include:
    -What happens when ancient human biology collides with 21st century technology
    -Living in a state of Continuous Partial Attention
    -The recipe for Deep Work
    -Navigating the Struggle phase towards a state of Flow
    -Why Multi-Tasking is a myth
    -The 2 Fundamentals to combat Distraction
     
     
    Related Episodes
    Episode 57 – Keep Your Focus – Avoid Procrastination
    Episode 32 – Planning and Prioritising in Chaos
     
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    • 17 min
    Ep 62: "The Art of Leadership"

    Ep 62: "The Art of Leadership"

    “Imagination is more important than Knowledge – Albert Einstein”
     
    What has Art got to do with Leadership? Throughout nearly 30 years of working with leaders and leadership, the very best leaders I’ve encountered all have had one thing in common irrespective of geography or industry: the sensibility of an artist. This was reinforced to me recently when attending a screening of a documentary produced by Maria Doyle Kennedy about the life and work of Irish artist Patrick Scott. After all, leadership is all about creating something novel and new from just your imagination combined with the resources at your disposal whilst inspiring others to join in its creation. So just what is that artistic sensibility that separates the best from the rest?
     
    Insights include:
    -The fallacy of the equation:  Good Leadership = Good Results
    -The best leaders are committed to creating a thing of Beauty
    -How the Physicist and the Artist are both opposites and the same
    -The root of authenticity and charisma
    -The 3 Primary Characteristics of Beauty – Radiance, Integrity, Consonance
    -Sage advice for appointing the next new leader (or anyone!)
     
     
    Related Episodes
    Episode 52 - Zoom Out Often
    Episode 45 – Finding Flow in Chaos
    Episode 43 – Building Trust in Teams
    Episode 40 – Leading Teams in Chaos – Part 2
    Episode 34 – Finding Meaning in Chaos
    Episode 26 – The Leadership Contribution
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    • 13 min
    From the Archives: EP 29: Deepening Connections in Chaos

    From the Archives: EP 29: Deepening Connections in Chaos

    Whilst not obligatory that you “love” your people at work - in the amorous sense! - people at least need to know you, as the leader, have got their best interests at heart.
    On this Valentine’s Day, it is worth remembering that your connection to those that matter makes an enormous contribution to your leadership impact and results. 
    Here’s one of my favourite episodes “From the Archive”: A timely reminder of why and how to …
    In this episode I explain:
    What Star Wars has to do with building connectionHow we often think we’re building connection when in fact we’re notHow our Tacit Wisdom is stronger than our intellectual knowledgeWhat to focus on to deepen connection…And ..our discomfort with silence
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    • 8 min
    EP 60: Leadership Manifesto - 25 Principles for Leading in Chaos

    EP 60: Leadership Manifesto - 25 Principles for Leading in Chaos

    I started the Flow(group) business exactly 25 years ago this month - in January 1998.
     
    I can’t brag, because Google started up the same month. 
     
    For context, it was the year Apple unveiled the iMac; the Bill Clinton/ Monica Lewinsky scandal; the FDA approved the Viagra pill (not related); and the NI Good Friday Agreement (definitely not related).
      
    During the time, in addition to the quotidian demands for change, our clients and our business has had to navigate 3 major Global Economic disruptions – spaced roughly a decade apart (just to keep us on our toes!):
     
    -Dotcom Bubble Implosion (2000)
    -Global Financial Crash (2009-10)
    -Covid Pandemic (2020+)
      
    What’s made the quarter-century journey most worthwhile is the Learning about Leadership.
     
    It’s been like attending a real-time, experiential Leadership Academy every day for 25 years where the case studies are playing out in the raw, moment by moment. Witnessing the best and the worst of leadership has led to insights you couldn’t possibly find in any one book.
     
    The Manifesto is a consolidation - into 25 Principles - of the essence of How to Be as a leader in a world of unending Chaos. 

    Related Episodes
    Episode 59 – Leadership in Lay-offs - Twitter Vs Stripe
    Episode 58 – Leadershipinchaos.gov.uk – How Liz Truss authored her own downfall
    Episode 26 – The Leadership Contribution
    Episode 5 – Clarity in Chaos
    Episode 3 – Communicating in Chaos
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    • 14 min
    EP 59 : Leadership in Lay-offs - Twitter Vs Stripe

    EP 59 : Leadership in Lay-offs - Twitter Vs Stripe

    “It’s only when the tide goes out you see who’s been swimming in the nude” – Warren Buffett
     
    As a leader the decision to let people go is never easy, but sometimes necessary. Nonetheless, it is often in these Moments that Matter where leaders show what stuff they are really made of. The current high-profile Tech lay-offs provide a unique test for leaders in a sector that has enjoyed rock-star growth throughout the last 2 decades. Twitter and Stripe announced their news at almost exactly the same time. The approach of the respective CEOs Elon Musk (Twitter) and Patrick Collison (Stripe) couldn’t have been more different. Collison’s handling of the announcement was honest, caring and instructive while Musk’s was terse, limp and impersonal. One’s leadership (and, by extension, brand) reputation has been elevated, while the other is in the gutter. Enjoy the contrast.
     
     
    Insights include:
    -The Leadership Contribution – the 2 things needed in a crisis?
    -How Musk got it so dreadfully wrong
    -The 7 things Stripe (Patrick Collison) did brilliantly by contrast
    -The impact on Leadership when you have no accountability
    -The 2 core leadership lessons you cannot fake
     
     
    Related Episodes
    Episode 58 – leadershipinchaos.gov.uk – How Liz Truss authored her own downfall
    Episode 27 – What the Trump legacy teaches us about Leadership
    Episode 26 – The Leadership Contribution
    Episode 5 – Clarity in Chaos
    Episode 3 – Communicating in Chaos
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    • 15 min
    EP 58 leadershipinchaos.gov.uk - “How Liz Truss authored her own downfall”

    EP 58 leadershipinchaos.gov.uk - “How Liz Truss authored her own downfall”

    “Useless. Shambles. Incompetent. CHAOS” These were the dominant words of a GB News Peoples’ Poll Wordcloud last week as the Tory party unravelled amidst a sequence of bizarre and barely credible events. But what role did Leadership have to play in the absurdist drama and what was it Liz Truss did or didn’t do to contribute to her own ultimate downfall? This episode unpicks the very clear failures of the leader and the obvious cause-and-effect lessons in the whole sorry piece.
     
    Insights include:
    “Juvenile delinquency breaks out when there is an absence of a responsible adult”The 3 Big Lessons of Leadership in the Liz Truss demiseAmbiguity is #1 Enemy of EffectivenessConviction itself isn’t enough – you need the peopleSelf-Awareness trumps Self-InterestSage advice for appointing the next new leader (or anyone!) 
     
    Related Episodes
    Episode 39-42 – Leading Teams in Chaos
    Episode 43 – Building Trust in Teams
    Episode 33 – “Taking Back Control” in Chaos
    Episode 34 – Finding Meaning in Chaos
    Episode 26 – The Leadership Contribution
    Support the show

    • 14 min

Customer Reviews

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9 Ratings

9 Ratings

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Leadership in chaos

Leadership in chaos is a hot topic, deals directly with the challenges of Covid as well as suggesting simple and clear approaches to improve. Well worth the investment of 15 minutes a week.

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