These leadership rules are simple. Just not easy.

Leadership has a few rules which anyone can use to improve their chances of success. Failing to use them will greatly increase your odds of failure too. Executive and business coach John M. McKee shares three tips and tactics to ensure you're more likely to be a winner.

After an emotional summer, it is now reasonable to forecast that the U.S. government will not succeed in its goal of a new, national healthcare program.

Interestingly, just nine months ago, most Americans would have disagreed with that statement. After all, many new members of Congress, and a new President, had just been elected.  Most of them said they were intent on finally "fixing" the system.

However, despite having a majority of seats in Congress, the goal of making a significant change to the US healthcare system has become less likely with each passing week.  Pundits in both the Republican and Democratic parties now contend that is not the time to make such significant change.  They put forth the argument that the country's economy has already taken too great a toll on the US budget and deficit and adding new expenses is wrong when the nation's deficits are so great.

But most of these same people knew last January that the economy was souring; destined to get worse - so what happened?  Is it simply that the economy has taken its toll on this program?  Or are there other reasons behind this change?

I know this is one of those emotionally charged issues.  However, without any political lean either way, I believe this bears discussion because we've witnessed some fundamental missteps that are made time and again by new leaders across all organizations and business sectors.  I've seen them occur regardless of the entity's size and activity.  Regardless of your job, role, or organization - and, no, it doesn't matter what your political beliefs are - keep these 3 management rules front and center when making plans for the future:

1. The strategies most likely to win are the ones that are the easiest to understand. If the situation is complex, figure out a way to make it understandable.  Otherwise, you'll end up being another one of those really smart people who has no followers, no success stories, and no promotional future.

2. Emotion wins over logic 9 times out of 10. When we get emotional we generate energy and enthusiasm within others.  An emotional team can get a lot done, they'll work longer hours, and help make converts.  It can beat a larger or better-equipped team without emotional buy-in. You'll accomplish what you intend.

3. The best deals come together fast. You've probably experienced this before like when you were buying a car, or being hired for a new job.  Things just fell into place and everyone walked away feeling good about the deal.  It's the same for new programs, or changes in business direction:  If you find that the same things need to be addressed repeatedly, it's a warning sign. It may be time to cut bait.

In many companies, and in life generally, some great projects are shelved while other poor ones get the green light.  We see it with choices for technology and vendors all the time.  Usually such decisions have more to do with how each side made their case, and less to do with logical comparisons of features and prices. It's often the same, by the way, for decisions affecting who gets promoted and who doesn't.


Leadership Coach


John M. McKee is the founder and CEO of, an international consulting and coaching practice with subscribers in 43 countries. One of the founding senior executives of DIRECTV, his hands-on experience includes leading billion d...

Editor's Picks

Free Newsletters, In your Inbox