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Norm Smallwood

Interview with Norm Smallwood

Learn more about the talented leadership speaker and the biggest advantages you get from booking Norm Smallwood for your next event. Read on below.

What is the message you hope people take away from your presentations?

There is a tremendous amount of concept clutter about leadership. I focus on making complex ideas and concepts more tangible and simple. Our premise is that leadership starts from the outside- with customers, investors, community- and only once you understand what these needs are can you develop required leadership skills, perspective and behaviors on the inside. That is the opposite logic of most leadership theories which focus on the psychological characteristics of individual leaders as the starting point. Over the last 10 years, my business partner Dave Ulrich and I have written several books on the Why, What and How of leadership. Why: Leadership is important because better leaders deliver better results to customers, investors, employees and the community. What: 60-70% of leadership is the same for any leader in any organization- this is the leadership code. That means 30-40% is unique. We call these the differentiators. How: There are 7 practices for turning aspiration into sustainable results. This is our latest book which will be published in March 2013 by McGraw Hill titled Leadership Sustainability

 

How did you decide to become a professional speaker? 

I became a speaker after I started writing books. Writing books creates the opportunity to connect with people around the ideas in the books. Someone can read a book but the opportunity to interact with the author allows a deeper integration of the ideas.

 

How are your keynotes unique?

I engage the audience around the topics that are relevant to them.  My intent is to interact with the group.

 

Can you briefly describe the leadership code?

The leadership code is an example of making the complex more simple. The leadership code is a synthesis of leadership studies already done by others about what it takes to be a successful leader. Our research found that 60-70% of what leaders need to know, be and do can be boiled down into 5 domains: Strategist, Executor, Talent Manager, Human Capital Developer and Personal Proficiency. Many companies spend a lot of money rediscovering these when they invest in developing a leadership competency model.

 

What are important characteristics which leaders should possess?

Leaders must be proficient in the Code- these are the fundamentals of good leadership.  They also need to develop unique leadership differentiators. The differentiators are how leaders connect employees on the inside to customers on the outside to ensure that customers receive the desired customer experience.

 

What types of audiences benefit from your keynotes?

Those who are interested in becoming better individual leaders and who have responsibility to develop the next generation of leaders in their company. I look forward to hearing from you.

 

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