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Leadership and Management Resources

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Example leadership and management articles from our Resource Base for trustees, charity chief executives and senior managers, and links to a wide range of articles and videos produced by others.

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Change

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Videos

Making toast doesn’t sound very complicated — until someone asks you to draw the process, step by step. Tom Wujec loves asking people and teams to draw how they make toast, because the process reveals unexpected truths about how we can solve our biggest, most complicated problems at work. Learn how to run this exercise yourself and hear Wujec’s surprising insights from watching thousands of people draw toast.

Tom Wujec presents some surprisingly deep research into the "marshmallow problem" — a simple team-building exercise that involves dry spaghetti, one yard of tape and a marshmallow. Who can build the tallest tower with these ingredients? And why does a surprising group always beat the average?

The world is full of leadership programs, but the best way to learn how to lead might be right under your nose. In this clear, candid talk, Roselinde Torres describes 25 years observing truly great leaders at work and shares the three simple, but crucial questions would-be company chiefs need to ask to thrive in the future.

We have all changed someone’s life — usually without even realizing it. In this funny talk, Drew Dudley calls on all of us to celebrate leadership as the everyday act of improving each other’s lives.

Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership — starting with a golden circle and the question "Why?" His examples include Apple, Martin Luther King, and the Wright brothers.

Four-star general Stanley McChrystal shares what he learned about leadership over his decades in the military. How can you build a sense of shared purpose among people of many ages and skill sets? By listening and learning — and addressing the possibility of failure.

What makes a great leader? Management theorist Simon Sinek suggests, it’s someone who makes their employees feel secure, who draws staffers into a circle of trust. But creating trust and safety — especially in an uneven economy — means taking on big responsibility.

Ash Beckham recently found herself in a situation that made her ask: who am I? She felt pulled between two roles — as an aunt and as an advocate. Each of us feels this struggle sometimes, she says — and offers bold suggestions for how to stand up for your moral integrity when it isn’t convenient.

What drives our desire to behave morally? Neuroeconomist Paul Zak shows why he believes oxytocin (he calls it "the moral molecule") is responsible for trust, empathy and other feelings that help build a stable society.

Trust is on the decline, and we need to rebuild it. That's a commonly heard suggestion for making a better world ... but, says philosopher Onora O'Neill, we don't really understand what we're suggesting. She flips the question, showing us that our three most common ideas about trust are actually misdirected.

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg looks at why a smaller percentage of women than men reach the top of their professions — and offers 3 powerful pieces of advice to women aiming for the C-suite.

Who says change needs to be hard? Organisational change expert Jim Hemerling thinks adapting your business in today's constantly-evolving world can be invigorating instead of exhausting. He outlines five imperatives, centred around putting people first, for turning company reorganisation into an empowering, energizing task for all.

How do creative people come up with great ideas? Organisational psychologist Adam Grant studies "originals": thinkers who dream up new ideas and take action to put them into the world. In this talk, learn three unexpected habits of originals — including embracing failure. "The greatest originals are the ones who fail the most, because they're the ones who try the most," Grant says. "You need a lot of bad ideas in order to get a few good ones.

What's the secret to unlocking the creativity hidden inside your daily work, and giving every great idea a chance? Harvard professor Linda Hill, co-author of "Collective Genius," has studied some of the world's most creative companies to come up with a set of tools and tactics to keep great ideas flowing — from everyone in the company, not just the designated "creatives."

Work-life balance, says Nigel Marsh, is too important to be left in the hands of your employer. Marsh lays out an ideal day balanced between family time, personal time and productivity — and offers some stirring encouragement to make it happen.

Modern work — from waiting tables to crunching numbers to designing products — is about solving brand-new problems every day, flexibly and collaboratively. But as Yves Morieux shows in this insightful talk, too often, an overload of rules, processes and metrics keeps us from doing our best work together. Meet the new frontier of productivity: cooperation.

Why do people feel so miserable and disengaged at work? Because today's businesses are increasingly and dizzyingly complex and traditional pillars of management are obsolete, says Yves Morieux. So, he says, it falls to individual employees to navigate the rabbit's warren of interdependencies. In this energetic talk, Morieux offers six rules for "smart simplicity." (Rule One: Understand what your colleagues actually do.)

Career analyst Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don't: Traditional rewards aren't always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories — and maybe, a way forward.

William Ury, author of "Getting to Yes," offers an elegant, simple (but not easy) way to create agreement in even the most difficult situations — from family conflict to, perhaps, the Middle East.

Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky won the Nobel Prize in Economics for a behavioural theory called prospect theory. It explained how people weigh up risks in decision making, and part of its findings revealed that we are inherently loss averse, meaning we give at least twice as much decision-making weight to the idea of losses than gains.

Most people instinctively avoid conflict, but as Margaret Heffernan shows us, good disagreement is central to progress. She illustrates (sometimes counterintuitively) how the best partners aren’t echo chambers — and how great research teams, relationships and businesses allow people to deeply disagree.

Motivation is a mysterious mechanism. It exists within all of us, but lays dormant unless unlocked. The 'how' is the difficult part, something business and individuals struggle with to varying degrees. Behavioural economist Dan Ariely has found that there’s a dissonance between what we think motivates people and what actually does. The simplest formula for motivation, and the one we reach for the most often, is that money = motivation. Luxury rewards are a powerful idea, but are they really what drive us?

Dan Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness, challenges the idea that we'll be miserable if we don't get what we want. Our "psychological immune system" lets us feel truly happy even when things don't go as planned.

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