Skip to main content


Three Rules for Change Management (when you are the subject of change)

It doesn’t matter whether you’re driving an innovation through a multinational company, or just trying to lose ten pounds. I learned them well, after many missteps. Rules are rules. Here they are: It doesn’t have to all be done at once. There is a writing standard I followed a long time ago (when almost all I did was write books) of doing five new pages a day. What I learned was that doesn’t add up to 35 pages a week or even 25 so you may as well be realistic and double your overly optimistic time schedule. (This particularly applies to losing weight.) There are good reasons for not rushing things.It will go better if you don’t try to control it. A book, like many other projects, needs to develop a personality of its own. It has your voice, but it’s an individual. Actually, this need it will have to ‘breathe’ is responsible for some of that extra time you’ll need (from the first rule.) If the change also involves other people, especially employees, your kids, your spouse or friends, th…
Recent posts

Team On! A Summer at Teamability

Hello! We're Madhavi Patel and Tara Mehta, and we interned at Teamability this summer. We've both learned so much during our time here, and we'd like to share our experiences with you!

Madhavi's experience:

I’ve always worked with people in my personal and professional life, but never seemed to understand what really makes a great team and how people with different work preferences can work together to achieve a common goal. However, it wasn’t until I started interning at The Gabriel Institute that I realized that Teamability is the answer to all of my questions.

A simple online experience described as ‘starring in a movie’ measures the Role you play on a team. The unique thing about Teamability is that it was engineered to measure what is actually happening when people team together to achieve a common goal. I really love the idea of having an online experience which then determines the Role you want to play in a company. My report was really accurate, so I understand…

How To Disrupt Employee Evaluations

If you’re a regular reader, you know I’m not big on resumes or job descriptions. Guess what. I don’t like employee evaluations either. I mean those bingo card things, where if you don’t get 5 on everything (and you never do) you feel bad. Right?
Time to disrupt… You can make yourself a fancy form, or just feel free to add up the numbers in your head. All you really have to do is rate your company on these 20 key employee satisfaction drivers. And by that, I mean your personal satisfaction, as an employee, because that’s all that counts on this Employee Evaluation. And just because I only want to disrupt, not cause a revolution, let’s stick with the same scoring system, 1 – 5, where 1 is absolutely not, and 5 is yes, perfectly. I understand my CEO’s vision.My CEO’s vision is personally relevant to me.I understand the plan to achieve the vision.I know what my part of the action is in the organization’s quest for the vision.I have the tools I need to do my part.People here are generally app…

Are You Taking Any Prisoners?

There are some situations which are guaranteed to send me into flashbacks of my youth. In this case, flashbacks of my entrepreneurial youth… I was exploring alternative ways to raise some development funding for a new product when a woman investor said to me, “I like your ‘take no prisoners’ attitude.” (Make no mistake about it, I much would have preferred that she had taken out her checkbook and written a big one. I was disappointed.) I remember asking myself at the time, as I reflected on my failure: why do I not take prisoners?  Are women expected to?  I hadn’t ever been accused of ’emotional blackmail’ and still haven’t, but I guessed that would be the equivalent of prisoner-taking. The good thing about flashbacks is how much you realize you’ve grown since the original experience, as you rethink what you wish you had said. In this case, I haven’t changed the part about what I said – and deeply believed: If you take prisoners, you take on burdens and distractions. You will become the i…

Ten Tips for De-stressing Leadership

If you do all of these, all of the time, you're probably ready for wings and a halo. Let's just say the more you try, the less stressed – and more angelic, even – you'll be.
Assume that your staff has the best interests of the organization in their intentions.Be forgiving, even when they make mistakes.Be merciful when they make big mistakes.Be compassionate; don't place them in tempting circumstances.Be gracious, even to those who don't return it.Be slow to anger when people disobey.Be abundantly kind and assume people mean well.Never renege on your word.Remember the times when people do something right.Always allow people to repent their error, carelessness or apathy and forgive them.© 2018 Dr. Janice Presser. This blog is reposted from the June 25, 2018 entry on with permission.

Five Leadership Lessons From My Kids

They aren’t leaders now, and they certainly weren’t then, but I learned from them anyway… 1) If people don’t want to play with you, it might be more about them than you. Oh, the tears when someone chose not to invite my offspring to a play date or party! But then they grew up. And last week one of them told me where some of those kids are now – more than twenty years later – and you wouldn’t want to be there for all the coffee at Starbucks. Leadership Lesson: It’s more important to be true to yourself than it is to be popular. 2) Sometimes being silly is more effective than being serious. Oh, how they loved Dr. Seuss! I can still recite parts of Hop on Pop, which just shows you how effective repetition is. But buried within the silly was always something really important, worth remembering and worth trying to apply in everyday life. As we learned from Horton, “A person’s a person no matter how small,” which was quite useful the day they met a very small man in a wheelchair. Leadership Lesso…

Leadership for the Rest of Us

I was neither born nor raised to be a leader. Not the architect of a new technology. Not the founder of a startup company. Not a CEO. When I was born (and this was a very long time ago), there were serious defects in my leadership blueprint. I had two X chromosomes at a time when one Y was needed to be a leader. (Actually, 42 Extra Long was the preferred standard, and I didn’t reach my full 5’2” until I was 25.) Although I had no choice in the matter, I also ended up with two loving parents, neither of whom was an entrepreneur or executive, which, at the time, was also considered a defect. It would seem hopeless. But somehow, along the way, I learned a few things that helped me get over my shortcomings. Here are some tactics you can try on your way to becoming a leader: Start, or take a leadership position in, an organization that does something good for people. (I was involved in several volunteer organizations and learned a lot about what being a leader really means.)People often make s…