Why Do We Pick Bad Leaders & How to Spot the Good Ones

Hola Todos!

Today’s leadership nugget is courtesy of a book review I read yesterday on CNN.com (click here). The book titled “Why Are We Bad at Picking Good Leaders” by Jeffrey Cohn immediately caught my attention.  First, the book has a heavy emphasis describing good leaders and leader passion – a topic of three previous DigNuggetville posts (click here – and here and here) – plus part of the lead in to all of Mr. Mike’s leadership posts.

Second, the book has a heavy emphasis on describing good leaders and empathy skills – a topic of four previous DigNuggetville posts (click here and here and here and here).

Finally, the book has a heavy emphasis on good leaders and Emotional Intelligence.  Now I know I have not given EI is due yet on DigNuggetville but we know from my MBA classes, EI is central to my leadership discussion.  While I am sure I will do something significant with EI on the blog in the near future, the following Wikipedia entry (click here) is a good starting point.  Also, when you get a chance, go to Amazon and take a preview of the Daniel Goleman books on the topic.


Best regards,

Dr. Dan-o


Daniel M. Ladik, PhD

Associate Professor of Marketing

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University




Topic Talk Tuesday – Work is FUN because it’s your PASSION

Hola Todos!

Today’s Topic Talk is from Holly Rogers who is currently working at Nickelodeon in LA.  It’s a recurring theme here at DigNuggetville but it can NEVER be stressed enough – Passion – Passion – Passion (for instance, click here).  Ask yourself – is my work so interesting that I can’t sleep at night?  It’s so exciting I find myself talking about it with others very easily?  Do you enjoy going to work because WORK doesn’t seem like work?  Check out Holly’s “E True Hollywood Story” below.

Holly, the floor is yours…


Making it in a town where very few make it; this is my E true Hollywood Story.

In 2007 after graduating from Suffolk University with a bachelor’s degree in business, I did what every- other newly graduated does; moves to Hollywood to be a waitress. Well not really a waitress but an “actress” I soon realized I was no different than everyone else here. I was waiting tables and doing the norm for a “struggling actor” — headshots, agents, auditions, I learned very quickly that this is in fact a business. The stuff we see on TV is so far from the actual work. But honestly it wasn’t a creative outlet for me.  I remember one of the first auditions I ever went on, was for a fat Jessica Simpson (that was great for my ego) I began to wonder, really? Is this what I want to do with my life?

I knew if I wanted to do the Hollywood thing, I was going to be something bigger (no pun intended) than just Jessica Simpson’s fatter twin.  I began writing. I started with a 30 minute Pilot called “Have a little Patience” About a modern day- role reversal of “I love Lucy.”  It was terrible, a great learning experience, but just awful. I still cringe when I watch it.  My second project “Feathers” about 3 women in their mid- twenties, chasing their dreams; while working in a bar. And now a project that I actually think could be worthy, “Beantownies” about 3 childhood best friends from Boston, who have relocated to sunny Los Angeles.

After living here for four years, I’ve just begun to understand the way this place works. It’s the only place where hard work doesn’t always pay off.  Example– after ten years of writing and chasing this pipe dream, finally a script you wrote sells, and they make your movie (this is your baby) then it flops…  (Just because it flops doesn’t mean it’s bad.) Come on– Transformers made 300 million and a monkey could have written that script… BUT I can almost guarantee your phone will not be ringing off the hook.  This is why it’s called fifteen minutes of fame, because sometimes its gone way faster then it came. So I wonder why people do this. I ask myself this daily… Why do I want to be a sitcom writer? And this is what I have come up with—because it’s a really, really fun job.

Something to think about today…

Best regards,

Holly Rogers


Leadership: Passion is the Fire that Kindles and Fuels our Talents

Hola Todos!

Any leadership post with something by John Maxwell is worth reading.  Add one of my favorite writers Malcolm Gladwell into the mix and you have something great.  In his post below, Mr. Mike reminds us that nothing incredible happens without passion: “Passion is the fire that kindles and fuels our talents.”


Dr. Dan-o


To:  The Great Leaders Who Have a Passion for Continuous Learning

Is “excellence” explained by one’s talents?  Are someone’s talents what drives extraordinary performance and achievements?  John Maxwell in his article, More Than Talent, acknowledges that while talent is important, “the primary pathway to excellence has three main steps”:

1) “Find Your Passion – People of excellence love what they do. They have learned how to fuel the fire that keeps them moving. How do you spot a passionate person?

·       They work with their whole heart.

·       They work with undistracted attention.

·       They work with maximum energy.

2) Never Cease Practicing – Passion won’t take you anywhere unless you combine it with disciplined practice. Malcolm Gladwell, in his book Outliers, studies success and discovers that innate talent has a lot less to do excellence than does practice …  Nobody cruises to the top on natural giftedness alone. As Gladwell writes, “Practice isn’t the thing you do once you’re good. It’s the thing you do that makes you good.”

3) Honor Your Values – We all could give examples of talented, charismatic people who sabotaged their careers by abandoning their values. Passion and practice bring excellence, but character sustains excellence over time. Absence of strong character eventually topples talent. People cannot climb beyond the limitations of their character. Eventually the limelight of success brings to light the cracks in their integrity.”

Great leaders recognize that talent in abundance is indispensable for a highly successful life.  They dedicate themselves to lives of continuous learning – growing and stretching themselves to find new possibilities in their life and the world around them.  Yet, all the talent in the world alone does not guarantee success.  Passion is the fire that kindles and fuels our talents.  It is the burning desire to find meaning and purpose in our life – finding and doing what we love – and then using our talents to their maximum to achieve our life’s dreams.  Let your excellence shine brilliantly with fire of your passion.  As the German philosopher Hegel wrote:  “Nothing great in the world has been accomplished without passion.”  Let your passion set fire to your soul and may you be more than you ever dreamed you could be.  Life is so very beautiful!

Have a beautiful day and a fantastic week!!!


Contact Information:

Michael M. Reuter

Director, Center for Leadership Development

Stillman School of Business

Seton Hall University

Tel: (Office) 973.275.2528; (Mobile) 908.419.6060

Email: Michael.Reuter@shu.edu