3 Surprising Qualities of Empowered Leaders

leadership Jan 31, 2020


Empowering leaders hire the best people and trust them to do their job. If the team can function well without them, they take satisfaction in knowing they’ve led well.

 To learn more, visit our blog

The best is yet to come. It starts with you.

Your friends,
The UpCloseTeam



Continue Reading...

The First Law of Leadership and Management

leadership Jan 03, 2020

Leadership and management are key aspects of any business.

Ask yourself this: what do you look for in a business investment?

Most venture capitalists or angel investors will say “management".

Sure, investors and bankers are looking for a good business idea in a growth-orientated industry that produces strong cash flow.

However, the bottom line is that investors are more interested in an average business idea backed up by a great management team, than a great business idea with an average management team.

But how do great management teams stay that way?

Well, it's all about people working together well, sharing a common vision, and getting things done.

Try replacing "management" with a related but more focused word: "leadership, leadership, leadership".

Now you have a mantra with real power!

In his book entitled The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership, John C. Maxwell writes that “Leadership ability determines a person’s level of effectiveness.” This truth...

Continue Reading...

Unleash your creativity

Innovation and creativity are pretty big buzz words right now. Read any leadership book, and you’ll find stories of leaders like Steve Jobs using their creativity to transform not only their business, but also their industry.

While these stories are inspiring, they can also be overwhelming. We may see these innovations as something practiced by an elite few leaders, way beyond our reach.  

But we all have the ability to release our creativity. We just need to give ourselves permission.

Embracing creativity

In reading John C. Maxwell’s book, How Successful People Think, I was reminded how the key to being a successful leader is to embrace and explore creativity.

So, what does this mean? John C. Maxwell writes about first recognizing that your ideas matter and valuing these ideas. Creative people don’t have all the answers, but they are open to and explore the options, looking for new ways to connect ideas (not always their own). They don’t fear failure,...

Continue Reading...

Seven Ways to Gain Momentum in an Organization

leadership Oct 30, 2019

Everyone loves a Cinderella story.

The 1982 Canucks, the 2004 Flames, the 2005-2006 Oilers—all of these teams were rated average by experts.

They performed as expected throughout the regular seasons...but then, post-season began.

And they gained momentum.

With each period, each game, each playoff series, their momentum built. And this momentum made the crucial difference between winning and losing.

Just like any type of sports team needs momentum to grow, so too does every organization.

But how do organizations create momentum?

It starts with the leader.

Leaders create momentum.

When a leader knows how to reach their full potential, and how to get their team to reach their full potential, they create momentum (learn more about how to reach your full potential here. You can also learn more about how we can help you discover and grow your full leadership potential through our various different coaching programs).

When momentum is ignited, it brings everyone together. Teams...

Continue Reading...

Life Is Not a Dress Rehearsal

Why Wait?

How much of your life have you spent waiting? Maybe you have important goals, but you've convinced yourself they won't be possible until something else happens first. You won't return to school until you can attend full-time. You won't apply for the job you really want until you're sure you will be selected.

John Kotter said, "Most people don't lead their own lives--they accept their lives." They wait for things to happen to them.

Do It Now

If you treat your life like a dress rehearsal, you will miss the main show. Instead, try the powerful approach recommended by John C. Maxwell in his book "Today Matters". Make your decisions now and focus on them every day.

Which Decisions?

We all know life consists of decisions and we want to make the best decisions we can. Did you ever consider that it is not only about making good decisions? It is also about knowing which decisions are the most important.

As leaders, we naturally think about finances and values. But as John C....

Continue Reading...

Leadership, It's Habit Forming

leadership Aug 26, 2019
The Difference Habits Make

We all want to be the kind of person who learns from losses, gains wisdom and remains steady in difficult moments. We think of these qualities as maturity. A lot of qualities go into maturity, but one of the most powerful is having good habits. Og Mandino says, "In truth, the only difference between those who have failed and those who have succeeded lies in the difference of their habits."

Enacting Our Values

In the Middle Ages, the word "habit" referred to clothing. Although the meaning of this word has evolved since then, these origins are helpful in understanding the way habits work. Like clothing, a habit is something we add to ourselves in order to reflect a personality we want others to see.

We decide what we value and then we put habits into place to ensure that our life enacts those values. According to common wisdom, it takes three weeks to form a habit. Depending on how challenging the new habit is, it may take longer.


The key to...

Continue Reading...

Leadership in Times of Challenge

leadership Jul 02, 2019
The Power of Leadership

According to John Maxwell, "People don't at first follow worthy causes. They follow worthy leaders who promote causes they can believe in."

All of our accomplishments as human beings begin with connection. This is especially true of leadership. Particularly in times of challenge, people look for leaders they can believe in. John Maxwell calls this principle the Law of Buy-In. You can read more about it in "The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership."

Leadership Response

Over the last two years, we've seen this law play out in powerful ways and we have been humbled to be part of it. In 2018, we were asked to help support and, in some cases, lead small business redevelopment efforts in Fort McMurray (Wood Buffalo Region). In our work with the Region through Community Futures Wood Buffalo, our first goal was to show we understood the results entrepreneurs and the small business community wanted. They wanted full business recovery from the impact of the 2016 wildfires...

Continue Reading...

Criticism and the Great Leader

leadership May 10, 2019

How do you deal with criticism as a leader?

People deal with criticism all sorts of ways—but the way a manager handles criticism says a lot about the type of leader they are.

But first, what is leadership?

Leadership is the art of leading others to deliberately create a result that would not have happened otherwise.

But there’s so much more to it than that. Great leaders possess skills and qualities that most others don’t.

What are the qualities of a good leader?

To be a great leader, you need to dream, communicate, take action, and commit. But there are many other key skills and qualities of a good leader. These include:

  • Communication
  • Awareness
  • Positivity
  • Motivation
  • Honesty
  • Innovation
  • Responsibility
  • Creativity
  • Adding value to others
  • Relationship building

 ...and, of course, the ability to take constructive criticism and feedback.

A leader is a person of influence. They add value to others. And to be able to do this, they must be able to remain positive and...

Continue Reading...

Are you a leader of influence?

leadership Apr 26, 2019

Do you know what it takes to influence people and be a good leader?

If you think of yourself as a person of influence, you probably have leadership qualities that have helped you change people’s lives — but is there more to being an influencer than that?

What Does it Take to be an Influencer?

Is it simply good leadership skills? A need to help others?

Everyone has influence. We all have an impact at home, in our jobs, as volunteers, in everything we do. Often, we don’t even realize the impact we have on others.

Here’s my story.

Twenty-Five Years Ago…

When I was a manager of a non-profit a quarter of a century ago, I coached a young man who was a talented designer. He wanted to start a business making images that could be attached to the spokes of a wheelchair.

You see, he was in a wheelchair himself — and he played a lot of basketball.

His idea was to design colorful and eye-catching designs on wheelchairs which would make players feel more...

Continue Reading...

Expanding Your Inner Circle

leadership Mar 15, 2019
Join forces with heroes

If you’ve ever been fortunate enough to hear Paul Martinelli speak about leadership, you might be tempted to believe his passion for helping people achieve their dreams came entirely from himself. He certainly inspires and he certainly motivates. But if you were to ask him, he would tell you how important it is to surround yourself with talented and enthusiastic people who can help you grow.

Today, Paul Martinelli is the President of The John Maxwell Team, and he helps people all over the world develop their leadership skills. But he worked hard to get where he is and he surrounded himself with people who could support his journey.

You could say he learned his leadership skills in the company of heroes. As a young man, he was recruited by the anti-crime activist, Curtis Silwa. Together they led the Guardian Angels, a group of volunteers who conducted unarmed safety patrols through some of the toughest neighbourhoods in the United States and Canada....

Continue Reading...
1 2