Leadership

Featured Leadership Articles

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Bridging the Leadership Gap Between Tech and Business

Instead of living in silos, technology must be integrated into all aspects of business.

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New Frontiers in Re-skilling and Upskilling

Companies are experimenting in how to help employees learn the skills to stay competitive.

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How Previous Generations Influence Our Decisions

Organizations can use their own histories to strengthen their cultures.

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Imaginary Time Travel as a Leadership Tool

Leaders can help employees manage immediate problems by harnessing the human capacity to think beyond the moment and recognize that “this too shall pass.” Psychological tools such as temporal distancing help ease the sting of current troubles. And the tool of “failure premortems” can help people identify dangerous risks and delusions in new projects by imagining they’re in the future looking back at why a project failed.

Leading the Way in Tech

What Does an AI Ethicist Do?

Microsoft has been active in advocating for an ethical perspective on artificial intelligence, and in 2018 it appointed its first general manager for AI policy and ethics. Tim O’Brien, who had been with the company for 15 years, says his activities as “AI ethics advocate” include extending the community of people who are focused on the ethics topic, meeting with Microsoft customers, and leading a research effort to develop a global perspective on tech ethics.

Why Tech Companies Don’t See Their Biggest Problems Coming

Technology companies, such as Facebook, often fail to make crisis management a central feature of their operations, thanks to five blind spots to which they are especially susceptible. Recognizing these shortcomings is the first imperative; the next is developing a well-designed crisis-management program that includes several key features. All tech companies should take heed, because failing to reflect — and then act — can worsen the consequences of crises that come down the pike.

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Leading Teams

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Unleashing Innovation With Collaboration Platforms

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Effective leadership of virtual teams matters more than which collaboration platform you choose.

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How to Lead Effective Cross-Functional Teams

Three key steps help make cross-functional digital collaboration a smoother proposition.

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Why Great Leaders Focus On Mastering Relationships

Great leaders are distinguished by their ability to master personal relationships.

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Get Things Done With Smaller Teams

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By creating smaller, more agile teams, managers can facilitate collaboration and efficiency.

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What’s Your Approach to Leadership?

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Take a Break

Leisure Is Our Killer App

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How can we avoid being automated out of our jobs? When recommending areas for development, experts tend to focus on two broad classes of skills that distinguish people from machines: sociability and variability. But homing in on those areas can lead to burnout, leaving us even more vulnerable to obsolescence. Leisure can mitigate these effects. Beyond reducing burnout, leisure is a uniquely human activity that robots cannot perform, and it might actually make us better thinkers and workers.

Let Your Mind Wander

Leisure time does two important jobs for us. Recharging is the obvious one. But it can also heighten our powers of creativity, given the cognitive benefits associated with letting our minds wander — and that gives us an edge over AI in the battle for jobs. Kellogg professor Adam Waytz makes this research-based argument in “Leisure Is Our Killer App,” the lead article in MIT SMR’s package on talent in a digital age. Check it out, along with the other pieces, in the fall issue of the magazine.

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Future of Work

Research on the ever-changing nature of leadership looks at the evolving mindsets and skills executives need to keep pace with changes in our fast-evolving world. Through a series of regular blogs and a forthcoming report and interactive experience, the research focuses on the specific attitudes and behaviors that distinguish the best leaders.

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Pathways to Progress for Women Entrepreneurs

The hidden obstacle to women who want to found B2B startups is often rooted in the way they are mentored and advised in the business world. Where men are more often coached in strategy and business tactics, women are more likely to be taught how to avoid internal politics and “fit in” culturally. This difference in mentoring leaves women at a disadvantage with respect to entrepreneurship.