Finding and Supporting Your Open Leaders


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Webinar conducted by Charlene Li on Friday, May 14, 2010. Third of four Webinars on the ideas in the book, "Open Leadership". More info at

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  • Best Buy set up an internal community for their front line employees. They all wear blue shirts in the stores, so they call the site “blue shirt nation”. In this example, a camera case was sent to the store and it just didn’t look right. Within two hours, someone had come into the community and seen the post. It happened to be the person who designed the case. She said that she would go back and make sure that all of the right cases got sent to the right stores. How long do you think it would have taken that floor manager to figure out that he had been sent the wrong case? Probably weeks. But with Blue Shirt Nation, employees are solving problems together.
  • Key take aways:Relationship was strongCould overcome small transgressions, mistakes are forgiven
  • Finding and Supporting Your Open Leaders

    1. Finding and Supporting Open Leaders<br />Charlene Li<br />Altimeter Group<br />May 14, 2010<br />1<br />#openleader<br />
    2. Open Leadership<br />2<br />Having the confidence and humility to give up the need to be in control,<br />while inspiring commitment from people to accomplish goals<br />How to give up control, and be in command<br />
    3. Why did you follow that person?<br />Think of your favorite leader<br />3<br />
    4. Believes that most people want to do their best want to be responsible, trustworthy, and honest.<br />Pessimists believe that most people cannot be trusted because they are looking for an advantage.<br />Two characteristics of optimistic leaders.<br />Curiosity – driven by a deep quest to learn constantly and see social technologies as a way to do this.<br />E.g. Dell and Starbucks<br />Humility – able to admit when you need help or have made a mistake.<br />E.g. Kodak<br />The Optimistic Leader<br />4<br />
    5. Believes that more heads are better than one.<br /> “It is very arrogant to think you can make better decisions than the thousands of people below you.”<br /> - Cris Conde, SunGard CEO<br />Recognizes and rewards collaboration.<br />As opposed to individual accomplishments.<br />Cisco shifted from command-and-control individualistic approaches to collaboration over seven years. <br />Accelerated in last two years thanks to social and collaboration technologies.<br />The Collaborative Leader<br />5<br />
    6. Find and develop your open leaders<br />6<br />Collaborative<br />Independent<br />Pessimist<br />Optimist<br />
    7. Convincing the curmudgeon<br />7<br />It’s a fad and waste of time.<br />What’s the ROI?<br />It’s too risky.<br />Who can best work with a Worried Skeptic?<br />
    8. Examples of Realist Optimists<br />Lionel MenchacaDell<br />Lovisa Williams<br />US Dept. of State<br />Ed TerpeningWells Fargo<br />
    9. Realist Optimists  Cautious Tester and Worried Skeptics<br />Help them understand the value of being open.<br />Keep Transparent Evangelists nearby to learn how to work with Pessimists.<br />Transparent Evangelists take on outward facing functions and responsibilities to open up the organization.<br />Supporting your archetypes<br />9<br />
    10. Best Buy’s First Social Media Experts<br />10<br />Steve Bendt & Gary Koelling<br />
    11. They harnessed Best Buy’s biggest asset<br />11<br />The Blue Shirts<br />
    12. supported Best Buy’s front line employees<br />
    13. Steve & Gary had an executive sponsor<br />13<br />Barry Judge CMO of Best Buy<br />
    14. They kept telling him one thing…<br />14<br />“Barry, you gotta get a blog!”<br />
    15. Barry’s first post<br />15<br />“I was so relieved when it was over—it was just two sentences to get started.” <br />
    16. The Premier Black Fiasco<br />16<br />6.8 million emails sent instead of 1,000 test<br />
    17. Barry’s response<br />17<br />“…we screwed up the execution which makes me feel sick about the customer trust that we have impacted.”<br />
    18. Openness became a strategy<br />18<br />Open market testing of new logo<br />
    19. +2,200 Best Buy employees provide support on Twitter<br />19<br />
    20. Being authentic<br />Mastering transparency<br />Developing and encouraging open leadership<br />Skills and behaviors of open leaders<br />20<br />
    21. I seek out and listen to different points of view.<br />I make myself available to people at all levels of the organization.<br />I use social technologies effectively to communicate.<br />I actively manage how I am authentic.<br />Being authentic<br />21<br />
    22. I take the time to explain how decisions are being made.<br />I reach out to customers frequently via social technologies, wherever they may be.<br />I encourage people to share information. <br />I update people regularly using social technologies.<br />I publicly admit when I am wrong.<br />Mastering transparency<br />22<br />
    23. I identify and actively nurture potential open leaders at all levels of the organization. <br />I train and encourage people to use open leadership skills. <br />I encourage the use of social technologies throughout the organization.<br />I create a support network for open leaders.<br />I ask "What did I/we learn" when things fail. <br />Develop and encourage open leadership<br />23<br />
    24. Prepare for new workflows<br />Social technologies will disrupt traditional organization structures<br />
    25. Social media triage<br />25<br />Take reasonable action to fix issue and let customer know action taken<br />Negative<br />Positive<br />Yes<br />Yes<br />No<br />Assess the message<br />Evaluate the purpose<br />Do you want to respond?<br />Does customer need/deserve more info?<br />Unhappy Customer?<br />No Response<br />Yes<br />Are the facts correct?<br />Gently correct the facts<br />Yes<br />No<br />No<br />No<br />Can you add value?<br />DedicatedComplainer?<br />Are the facts correct?<br />Yes<br />Yes<br />No<br />No<br />Yes<br />Respond in kind & share<br />Thank the person<br />Comedian Want-to-Be?<br />Explain what is being done to correct the issue.<br />Is the problem being fixed?<br />Yes<br />No<br />Yes<br />Let post stand and monitor.<br />
    26. Respect that your customers and employees have power<br />Share constantly to build trust.<br />Nurture curiosity and humility.<br />Hold openness accountable.<br />Forgive failure.<br />The New Rules of Open Leadership<br />26<br />
    27. Conduct the open leadership assessment and determine your archetype. <br />Do a 360 degree evaluation to keep yourself honest.<br />Create a plan to support all archetypes in your org.<br />Conduct a skills and behavior inventory.<br />What skills and behaviors do you have to support open leadership?<br />For the ones you are missing, how will you develop or compensate for them?<br />Action Plan<br />27<br />
    28. 28<br />28<br />Thank you<br />Charlene Li<br /><br /><br />Twitter: charleneli<br />For slides, send an email to<br />For more information & to buy the book<br />visit<br />