Leadership Development

Three Qualities of Compassionate Accountability Cultures

Caring supports safety, openness, and transparency. In a caring environment people will more likely put their best selves forward. We are more likely to learn about the real agendas and real problems in a safe environment. Caring sets the stage for curiosity.

Curiosity supports resourcefulness, creative problem-solving and innovation. Curiosity means having a genuine interest in finding the best solutions, nurturing unique gifts, and leveraging diversity. Curiosity is about leaving ego at the door. Curiosity paves the way for consistency.

Consistency means finishing what you start, making good on promises, walking the walk and demonstrating character. People need to know what to expect and what core principles are not going to change over time. Consistency breeds perseverance.

Compassion without accountability gets you nowhere. Accountability without compassion gets you alienated. Blending the two with Caring, Curiosity, and Consistency builds great cultures.

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Two Questions Every Leader Must Answer To Build Trust

As a communication and positive conflict advisor to leaders, one of the most common issues I deal with is broken trust among team members. I facilitate many conversations around what trust means to people and have discovered that it boils down to two key questions:

Can I count on you?

Am I safe with you?

“Can I count on you?” is all about accountability. People who define trust this way care about follow-through, keeping promises, meeting deadlines, and telling it like it is. For them, trust is built when they can count on us to do what we say and finish what we start. Trust is eroded by failing to do these things. (more…)

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Pixar’s Secret Weapon all Leaders Should Know About

Pixar Studios has created some of the biggest blockbuster animated motion pictures in history. From The Incredibles, to Nemo, to Cars, their movies resonate with all ages and keep us coming back for more.

Pixar has a secret weapon. They use a language-based personality and communication model called Process Communication to help design their characters and storylines. (more…)

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Leadership Quotient: Can it be measured?

What if you could assess a person’s Leadership Quotient and predict how they will function in a range of leadership situations? What would you assess? How would you measure it?

At Next Element we’ve been working on this for nearly a decade. And we’ve discovered some answers. In our quest we’ve avoided any hard content measures of leadership (e.g. credentials, experience, degrees, promotions, successful projects). Not that these aren’t important – they most definitely are. We leave this for the industry experts. Our big question is what process factors underly all successful leadership, regardless of industry, position, or technical expertise?

Along with our experience assessing and training hundreds of leaders, we’ve studied Emotional Intelligence, Social Intelligence, Multiple Intelligences, top leadership competencies desired by C-level executives, and leadership skills most associated with success. We’ve distilled it down to these four process skills that make up leadership quotient. (more…)

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Three Essential Strategies for Maximizing In-Person Meetings

The Centre for Economics and Business reports that the average office worker sits in meetings about four hours a week and feels the majority of that time is wasted. There are lots of reasons for this, and it boils down to two key realities.

Compassion without accountability gets you nowhere: If meetings are only about catching up, connecting, and seeing people, you aren’t advancing key priorities.

Accountability without compassion gets you alienated. If meetings are purely task-focused, only about what hasn’t been accomplished, or a place to rant about goals, then you aren’t tending to relationships. (more…)

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All Problems Are Emotional Problems

As a leader have you ever felt frustrated because you can’t seem to get to the root of the problem? Regardless of what solution is proposed there is some form of resistance. It’s like a moving target.

Most problem-solving efforts are doomed to fail because the real issue – an emotional issue – is never disclosed. People are motivated to reduce uncomfortable and negative emotions, and will go to great lengths to do so. However, if they are unaware or unwilling to disclose these emotions, problem-solving will go around and around without resolution. (more…)

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Police Brutality and Compassionate Accountability

It seems that incidents involving police brutality are increasing. Recently a policy officer in McKinney, TX resigned after being caught on video pulling a gun on teenagers at a swimming party. Police Chief Conley was quoted as saying, “Our policies, our training, our practice doesn’t support his actions. He came into the call out of control, and as the video shows was out of control during the incident.”

I feel fortunate to live in a town with a terrific police force a police chief who has the self-awareness and self-management skills to lead a team of compassionate AND accountable officers. I also believe that most officers want to be effective and avoid losing the public’s trust. Addressing complicated problems like this requires attention to many factors including economic inequality and racial and ethnic prejudice. Along with that, I’d like to suggest that police officer selection and training implement principles of compassionate accountability.


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Policy Manuals And Negative Drama

I have a theory that the amount of negative drama in your organization is proportional to the size of your company’s policy manual.

Here’s my logic:

  • Most negative behavior is a result of unmet positive needs.
  • Eighty percent of your behavior problems are caused by 20% of your people.
  • Prescriptive behavior policies are a great way to help leaders avoid the conflict of accountability and difficult conversations.


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New PCM Certification for Leader-Mentors, July 13-15 in Los Angeles

Led by Nate Regier, PhD, PCM Certifying Master Trainer 

Become a PCM Certified Mentor within your organization. PCM Mentoring Certification is for managers and executives who desire to become more proficient in the model, and allows you to independently order, administer and debrief the PCM Personality Pattern Inventory with your employees.

This three-day intensive course will focus on proficiency with PCM concepts, interpretation of the PPI, and application of PCM to leadership. Pre-requisites include having completed the 3-day PCM Core Topics seminar. PCM 2-day Advanced Conflict Resolution recommended. (more…)

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Name It to Tame It

Memorial Day is a day of honoring and remembering those who have given their lives in service of our country. It’s also a day to remember any loved one who has died. Memories can be positive or negative and bring up many mixed emotions. Naming these emotions is an important step in healing, and in gaining healthy control over their impact in our lives.

A recent study on the power of naming emotions showed that our emotional state profoundly influences the quality of our work, yet many of us aren’t aware of how we’re feeling at any given moment or what the impact may be.


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