Leadership Blog

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From Incite to Leadership founder and CEO Jo Ilfeld, read the latest on strategic vision, leading change amid complexity, and honing the way you communicate and collaborate with others. Get resources, practical strategies, research, and more.

Three Obstacles Blocking Progress on Your Goals

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | July 10, 2024 |

We’re at the mid-point of the year. If you’re like 91% of Americans, you haven’t thought about your New Year’s Resolutions in months – unless it’s to lament how quickly you gave them up. In my hall of shame, I resolved to read a chapter a day of War And Peace – 361 chapters –…

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The Power of Transparency

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | July 3, 2024 |

I recently had two contrasting conversations that underscored the importance of transparency in leadership. Now, let me ask you: when faced with the choice of sharing what’s going on or withholding information, which way do you usually lean? In both instances, the discussions centered around the profound impact of transparency on team dynamics.  While your…

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The Power of Second-Order Thinking

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | June 26, 2024 |

Have you ever thought you had the perfect solution only to realize it wasn’t as easy as you initially thought? In my executive coaching practice, I often see my clients jump straight to implementing new solutions, especially during reorgs or when moving people around. They focus on the desired outcome and the immediate fix, which…

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Accountability: Leveraging Your Team

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | June 19, 2024 |

Have you ever thought about all the things you need to get done and felt a sense of dread, overwhelm, or resistance? Recently, I discussed with a friend this universal experience of holding ourselves accountable for tasks. We often feel we “should” do this or “should” have completed that by now. If you’re in the…

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Change is Possible. But Not in the Way You Think.

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | June 12, 2024 |

People don’t change, right? They are who they are. Over the years, I have heard these words so many times from my clients and it immediately sends me into disproving mode —  I am a coach, right? I spend my days finding evidence contrary to that statement. People DO change. People change their habits. People…

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Bring Back Small Talk

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | June 5, 2024 |
For this article by Jo Ilfeld, CEO of Incite to Leadership on small talk the image shows a midlife woman with glasses chatting to a male colleague while holding a cup of coffee

Have you ever wondered if we should bring small talk back? Pre-COVID, I often discussed how the most important parts of meetings were the small talk moments—those informal chats while waiting for others to join or as everyone left the room. This small talk bonded people through shared experiences, like seeing the same movie or…

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Are Your Motivations Clear in Crucial Conversations?

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | May 29, 2024 |
For this article by Jo Ilfeld, CEO of Incite to Leadership on overcomplicating things clear motivations the images shows a woman with crossed hands thinking.

Have you ever worried about having a crucial conversation and whether it might upset the other person or tarnish your relationship? Recently I discussed with my husband a difficult conversation he needed to have. One key aspect we talked about was his motivation for having this conversation. It’s important to be clear about your motivations…

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Do You Overcomplicate Things?

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | May 22, 2024 |
For this article by Jo Ilfeld, CEO of Incite to Leadership on overcomplicating things the images shows six post-its with chalk lines scribbled between all of them.

An edited version of this article appeared in Forbes Coaches Council Do you overcomplicate things? During a recent strategy session with a client, his mind spiraled the minute a strategy was mentioned. His thoughts went into overdrive, trying to formulate a complete plan ready to execute. This led to his next realization that he would…

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Leading In Complexity: Landing a Max 9

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | May 15, 2024 |
For this article by Jo Ilfeld, Executive Leadership Coach on leading in complexity the image shows a plane landing

Leading in complexity is paramount. In turbulent times, it’s crucial to remain steady. Nothing illustrates that better than the recent incident with the Max 9s, where part of the airplane malfunctioned mid-flight. I used this scenario recently with a client, who was struggling with a major reorg they were overseeing. They expressed how hard it…

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Treat Strategic Time Like a Doctor’s Appointment 

By Jo Ilfeld, PhD | May 8, 2024 |
For this article by Jo Ilfeld, Executive Leadership Coach on strategic time the image shows someone holding an ipad with a schedule.

Do you want a tip on how to safeguard your strategic time? During a recent conversation with one of my clients about blocking off strategic time in the calendar, a lightbulb moment occurred for me. This particular client was sharing her struggle of preserving her blocked-off time and how it quickly vanishes like pixie dust…

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