Historically, business leaders equated functional excellence with organizational success. Harvard Business School taught me marketing, finance, strategic planning and production skills. I learned later that success as organizations and communities depends on leadership skills which often remain untapped. We attempt to teach leadership by providing skills training (e.g., communication, delegation, conflict resolution). While training can help, blind spots and bad attitudes trip us up. Although the subjects that confound us differ, all of us at times say one thing and do another. Crises invariably are triggered by blind spots, especially ones around our own anger. Problems evident to others often are not apparent to us until the bridge collapses, the project bombs, the client changes firms, the bank forecloses, the key employee quits, your department is downsized, or, most noticeably, you are fired. The Leadership Hour focuses on how to rise above common blind spots and attitude issues.
Christine Cowan-Gascoigne designs and facilitates leadership development programs, teaches interpersonal skills, works as an executive coach and therapist, and consults in human resource issues. Building on her degrees from MIT and Harvard Business School, she founded The Leadership Company in 1990 to foster responsible leadership and help others understand its critical role in strengthening our families, businesses, and communities. Her intense interest in leadership grew out of more than a dozen years of experience in marketing and strategic planning, first as a consultant at McKinsey and Company and then as Director of Public Affairs at The Cleveland Clinic Foundation where she directed a staff of 70 in marketing, strategic planning, public relations and consumer affairs. Since receiving a Masters in Social Work in 2004 from Case Western Reserve Univ, she has worked at Hopewell, a residential therapeutic farming community for adults with serious mental illness, in a variety of roles including clinical manager and psychotherapist. In 2010 she expanded the functions of The Leadership Company by founding a private psychotherapy practice, TLC Center for Psychotherapy in Beachwood, Ohio for teenagers and adults. Her corporate clients have included Eaton Corporation, Stanford University, Case Western Reserve University, The Johns Hopkins Health System, University Hospitals Health System, The State University of New York, Leadership Cleveland and The United States Coast Guard.