The Power of Talent
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What Michelangelo & Michelle Obama Can Teach Us About Leadership
Blog of The Month
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Issue: 3
October 2013

Happy Halloween!

In this month's issue of The Power of Talent, find out what Michelangelo and Michelle Obama can teach you about leadership.

After years of scaled back budgets and doing more with less, the need for strong talent and leadership development is once again topping the CEO wish list. Investing in shaping talent is a solid strategy to accomplish organizational goals. But is leadership just for people with authority or can everyone take part? Keep reading to look at leadership in new ways.

Here at Torchiana, we believe that your people are your most valuable asset. That's why our staff of professionals has expertise in all facets of leadership development, executive coaching, career management and career transition/outplacement services to help your company grow.

Please contact us if you'd like to discuss further.

All the best,
Kristi Rocha & Lynne Saiz
What Michelangelo & Michelle Obama Can Teach Us About Leadership by Richard Mirabile, Ph.D.

Rewind to the 16th Century: The Renaissance 

One of the most celebrated artists in all of recorded history, Michelangelo Buonarroti, is purported to have once said that he did not "create" sculptures, rather, he merely "removed what was on the surface to reveal what was hidden underneath." Hold that thought!

Fast Forward to 2012: The Democratic National Convention

In case you think this is some clever way to proclaim my support for one political party or another, rest easy. This is an observation on what I think may have been one of the most profound statements about leadership that I've heard in the past twenty years. During Michelle Obama's speech at the convention, she said, "Being President doesn't change you, it reveals who you are!"

I think we can all agree that while Michelangelo probably didn't write her speech, perhaps the speechwriter who did has a day job as a sculptor. In any event, Michelle Obama's words resonated very deeply. What struck me the most was how clearly and elegantly her statement described what the pundits have been trying to say about leadership for the past fifty years.

As both a student and teacher of leadership, I consider myself pretty well versed with what scholars and practitioners have been telling us for decades about this subject. They generally describe it in terms of character traits, competencies, behaviors, and what successful and unsuccessful leaders do that warrants categorizing them in one camp or the other. Nothing particularly wrong with these descriptions but after twenty or thirty years of essentially redundant messages, there is nothing particularly new in these descriptions either.

Continue reading the PDF version of this article here.

Photo Credit: USDAgov
Blog of The Month
Reframing Leadership

Leadership is a very popular topic. Peruse any business section of Chapters Indigo or Amazon and you will discover our hunger to understand leadership and become better leaders. Discussions about leadership are everywhere; everyone has an opinion about what leaders should do to move a group organization or country out of confusion and into the "Promised Land." This underscores our collective belief that leadership is essential and required to create a better future.

Notice when you walk into any room and ask people to define leadership you will get a number of responses that reflect the various mental models and beliefs. How divergent are the responses?

As the discussion continues, someone will most likely suggest that leadership is not necessarily embedded in the person occupying the authority role; suggesting that leadership can be assumed by anyone. This is usually followed with a statement that we need someone in charge in order to succeed. Being in a position of authority, however, is not synonymous with leadership.

Many blog and articles call on leaders to take action themselves. In fact, it seems there is no shortage of material or suggested approaches to develop the leaders of tomorrow. From leadership competencies to leadership development programs to Covey's Seven Habits, a plethora of options exists.

Continue reading at the CareerPartners International website.
This article was provided by Career Partners International.
What's New at Torchiana Mastrov & Sapiro?
Business people 1
We talk to hundreds of companies and frequently hear that one of the most critical challenges facing businesses today is strengthening and retaining Leadership Talent. To help address this issue, Torchiana is pleased to highlight their strategic partnership with Dr. Richard Mirabile and the Raising the Leadership Bar Program™. Key program features include expanding foundational leadership capabilities; accelerating leadership growth; strengthening leadership impact with game-changing success factors. Specifically the program provides practical tools for increasing influence, strengthening focus and alignment processes, improving decision making, sharpening business acumen and leading change. Every program is unique and incorporates key cultural characteristics and business challenges of the company. Please let us know if you'd like to learn more. We look forward to connecting with you. 

Photo Credit: SCSSAPICS
Upcoming Events

Raising the Leadership Bar Preview Session
October 31st at 8:30a.m. - Noon
Torchiana in San Francisco

GrowBold Roundtable Discussion: Presenting to Executives
October 22nd, 4:30p.m. - 6:30p.m. 
South San Francisco - Click Here to Confirm Online by October 21st.
HR Strategy Forum - Culture: How do we adapt and change key cultural norms to meet new external business demands?
November 20th at SVB Conference Center
3003 Tasman Drive in Santa Clara

To learn more about these events, please contact us.
About Torchiana Mastrov & Sapiro

Established in 1980, Torchiana is the Bay Area's most experienced independent career management firm. Our staff of professionals have expertise in all facets of leadership development, executive coaching, career management and career transition/outplacement services. WE have established strategic alliances with select organizations to fulfill additional human capital and business needs.

We firmly believe that your people are your most valuable asset. Our offices in San Francisco, San Ramon and Santa Clara provide service to more than 300 companies and we deliver our services worldwide through Career Partners International (CPI).