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April 27, 2012
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Leading Edge 
  • The corner office is no place for optimists
    Relentless positivity is fine when you're visiting a sick friend, but it's got no place in the C-suite, writes David Gebler. Excessive optimism stops bosses from diagnosing problems promptly and can lead them to ignore crises until it's too late to put things right. "When a company is unhealthy, 'Everything is going to be okay' is not what you need to hear from those in authority positions," Gebler writes. Leadership Now (4/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • Think in a different language to make better decisions
    People make better, more rational decisions when they think through a problem in a language other than their native tongue, according to research. French works well, as do Japanese and Spanish; for non-native speakers, English is also beneficial. Researchers believe the process works by allowing people to step back and gain a new perspective on the problems they're facing. Bloomberg Businessweek (4/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Strategic Management 
  • Groupon has got to grow up, says beer-swilling CEO
    Groupon should grow up quickly and stop "taking stupid risks," said CEO Andrew Mason between sips of beer at an all-hands town meeting this week. To that end, the daily-deals company will seek to strengthen its financial controls and hire additional finance staff. "We're still this toddler in a grown man's body in many ways," Mason said. The Wall Street Journal (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Innovation and Creativity 
  • Want to innovate like Hitchcock? Try changing the subject
    Alfred Hitchcock had an annoying habit of changing the subject in the middle of discussions about particularly thorny problems, one of the filmmaker's regular co-writers writes. His digressions were a deliberate attempt to change the pace and create an atmosphere that was more relaxed and, hopefully, more creative. "At first, I was almost outraged, and then I discovered that he did this intentionally. He mistrusted working under pressure," the writer recalls. Conversation Agent (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
The Global Perspective 
  • Wal-Mart's not the only one paying foreign bribes
    Amid the brouhaha over Wal-Mart's Mexican bribery scandal, it's easy to forget just how prevalent corruption is among multinational companies, writes Stephen Gandel. At least 81 publicly listed companies are allegedly breaking U.S. foreign-bribery laws, including Hewlett-Packard, Avon and Koch Industries. "Perhaps Wal-Mart should try the 'everyone does it' defense," Gandel writes. CNNMoney/Fortune (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
  • African traders seek risky bargains in China
    Nigerian traders are descending on Guangzhou and other Chinese cities in search of cheap products that they can ship home and sell at a profit. There are plenty of bargains to be had, but the traders are increasingly being targeted by Chinese muggers and con-men. "The producers are in the informal sector, so you'll have to pay cash. People know about that and can take advantage," says one trade expert. National Public Radio (text and audio) (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Engage. Innovate. Discuss. 
  • Best practices that lead to great corporate culture
    Companies that consistently deliver performance while maintaining a culture of trust and integrity do so because of certain best practices, writes S. Chris Edmonds. Purpose, value and building trust are part of work as well as personal life, and employees are held accountable for performance and values goals that are clear and consistent, he writes. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Leadership (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
Daily Diversion 
  • We're proud to be Dull and Boring, communities say
    The Oregon town of Boring has declared itself twinned with the tiny Scottish village of Dull, sparking titters from observers on both sides of the Atlantic. Still, says Bob Boring, the great-grandson of the Oregon town's founder, it's important to remember that the town isn't as tedious as it sounds. "There's not a lot that goes on, but it's not that boring, either," he says. The Oregonian (Portland) (4/26) LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
 
Position TitleCompany NameLocation
Executive Director CropLife Foundation/Director, Stewardship CropLife AmericaWashington, DC, DC
Manager, Regulatory PolicyRISE (Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment)Washington, DC, DC
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Editor's Note 
  • Follow @SBLeaders at the Milken Institute Global Conference
    SmartBrief on Leadership editor James daSilva will be attending the Milken Institute Global Conference in California from April 29 to May 2. Follow @SBLeaders next week for an inside look at the speakers and sessions. LinkedInFacebookTwitterGoogle+Email this Story
SmartQuote 
When we look at companies that have faced scandals ... the problem often comes down to employees whose surprisingly positive behavior was distorted by a toxic culture and clueless leaders."
--David Gebler, founder and president of the Skout Group, writing at Leadership Now
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