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2020: Building Better Leaders in a Changing World

This year, we at the Center for Leadership at FIU worked hard to adapt and innovate our award-winning leadership development programs, leadership research, and engagement events to meet the needs of leaders everywhere. 

Leaders Removing Glass Ceilings – How Leaders Can Foster Gender Equity

The recent global pandemic has challenged many across the globe and has taught us several key lessons - one of which is the power of collective action and resilience in combatting a problem. As we celebrate Women’s History Month, the same very basic principle of having a united front may help achieve gender parity in the workplace.

4 Ways Leaders Change the World by Thinking ‘Outside the Building’

Some of the biggest ideas to tackle “complex, messy, and recalcitrant” problems in education, philanthropy, social inequality, even the arts and culture, came not from within the corporate environment, but from outside its walls.

Why are Busy Managers Less Fair?

A key reason that being busy gets in the way of being fair is that acting fairly is hard work. It’s not something that comes effortlessly. Fairness is not one simple choice but involves a series of steps and calculations that take time and deliberate effort. Managers have to take time to consult with employees and understand their issues, and collect and weigh numerous pieces of information about the situation at hand.

Impossible Leadership Situations

How important is it that a leader ‘looks like’ what we expect? Research has shown it can be important, and problematic, and has far-reaching implications beyond what you might expect. Here’s the core issue - if an individual conforms to our specific ‘mind model’ of what we think a leader should do/be like/look like – then we grant leadership to them. We acknowledge them as a leader. We follow them.

3 Life Strategies inspired by the Spice Girls

So, what do you really want to achieve in 2019? Most of us, go through our professional – and even personal – lives not thinking about what we really want. Too often we are guided by what is expected, what is available, or, alas, what is convenient. So, stop for a moment and think about what you really want out of life

What is the 'cost' of rudeness?

What is the true ‘cost’ of rudeness and incivility? No one likes to be treated rudely, but of course, it happens. And when it does, sometimes we just have to suck it up and carry on. The workplace isn’t perfect and people aren’t always going to get along.

Wasted Dollars: Perception vs. Evidence of Leadership Training

Leadership development can, and often does, fail to live up to expectations. And even when it is successful, it does not mean that it is a cure-all for what ails an organization, nor can it ‘fix’ a horrible leader. So, what is it good for? When does it work? And when does it fail?

Culturally Responsive Leadership

How can leaders bridge divides to get the most out of their team? Some valuable clues for leaders and organizations might come from the field of education – which has been examining and testing ideas for decades. 

Hostile work environment! Ugh!

Bad manners, rudeness and outright disrespect in the workplace have deep costs. It affects more than two-thirds of all employees and leads to lost productivity, high turnover, poor customer service, and a dampened bottom line.

Chipping away at Think Manager - Think Male

Close your eyes and picture a leader. If the leader is a male, you’re experiencing the phenomenon called “Think Manager, Think Male.” Erroneously, masculine attributes like competitiveness and aggressiveness are perceived to be needed for management positions. “Think Manager, Think Male” happens with both sexes but most frequently with men.

Is it best to always think positive?

Focusing on the positive is important, but it is also critical not to deny when we’re upset, bummed out, frustrated, or disappointed – sitting in that moment for a time may be much healthier in the long term. And here’s why…

Leading Through Innovative Disruption

Imagine the life of a legacy grocery retailer. In recent years, many believed technology would present among the greatest challenges to their industry. The September close of online retailer Amazon’s acquisition of specialty brick-and-mortar grocer Whole Foods, however, brought the combination of immediate disruptive innovation and deep discounting from a mega organization with a national footprint.

Leadership, Disruption and Innovation at P&G

Albert Einstein insightfully pointed out that “Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.” That insight is useful in evaluating the Procter & Gamble (P&G) Proxy Contest between P&G and Trian Partners/Mr. Peltz.

Depleted Leaders Do Foolish Things

Have you seen someone you know become rude or snappy when they’re tired? Of course you’ve never done this. We’re talking about other people. Or when ‘someone else’ is extremely hungry – we even have a name for what can result – being ‘hangry.’

Why good relationships (but not close friendships) matter for your leadership

In a 2013 engagement study, staffing and recruiting firm Randstad found that the number one reason employees leave their job is their immediate supervisor. This idea is also transmitted by a well-known saying: “People don’t leave bad organizations, they leave bad bosses.” While a decision to quit often has a number of reasons, a significant body of research over the years has validated this basic idea.

Good intentions are not enough: How gender bias shows up in subtle ways.

Sure, many organizations say they want to create more opportunities for women in leadership. And many organizations actually mean it. But even with good intentions, organizations (and you) may be unintentionally making it more difficult for women to ascend and succeed in leadership positions.

Can Leadership Really Be Learned?

We don’t have to look far to see examples of ineffective and misguided leadership. Organizations and individuals spend billions of dollars in the U.S. each year on the hope that people can become better leaders. Oftentimes it is just that – hope. But can leadership really be developed?

Female CEOs of Fortune 500 companies now top 5 percent. What, you’re not cheering?

According to the Pew Research Center, the share of female CEOs of Fortune 500 companies topped 5 percent for the first time in the first quarter of 2017, with 27 women heading major firms. General Motors, headed by Mary Barra, is the largest U.S. company with a female chief executive.

Amplify your Leadership with a whisper

I'm trying to help people think about leadership differently, as something we practice, not just achieve and stop learning. Every leader can continually be advancing her or his skills.” This was the goal for Dr. Nathan J. Hiller’s keynote presentation at the LEAD2017 Conference, held recently in Nashville, TN, and presented annually by

How should YOU lead during this presidential transition?

Over the coming months leaders should keep one thing in mind: to a large extent, it doesn’t matter what YOU think about this transition. Effective leadership is often not about you. Much of effective leadership is about your employees and your team, who, for the most part, are the ones getting things done.

Who’s your Leader of the Year?

As each year draws to a close, many “Year in Review” lists trumpet the leaders who succeeded over the past year and point out which ones booted their organizations to a downward spiral. Fortune magazine recently published its list of the top five leaders for 2016.

Our favorite moments of #SusanLTaylorDay

The Leadership Lectures, presented by the FIU Center for Leadership, and in partnership with Mercantil Commercebank, had a stellar launch to their 2016-2017 season with more than 250 guests attending. Since 2009, The Center has featured world-class, accomplished and influential leaders with expertise ranging from business and philanthropy to public service and academic research- that is, the people who deliver results!