Book Promo: Lead Like Walt: Discover Walt Disney’s Magical Approach to Building Successful Organizations

Lead Like Walt: Discover Walt Disney’s Magical Approach To Building Successful Organizations

“Pat Williams has done a remarkable job of telling a very inspirational story of Walt Disney and the attributes that made him so successful. I highly recommend his book to help motivate you to a future you did not know was possible.” – Don Iwerks, Former Disney Executive, an Oscar Winner and Co-founder of Iwerks Entertainment

“Walt was a paradox. I’ve interviewed hundreds of people who knew him. A few described him as a harsh and insensitive taskmaster. Some found him charming one day, then dour and distant the next. Most lived in awe of him. How could one man be remembered so differently by different people who knew him?” says Pat William, Lead Like Walt (Section: Lead with Kindness).

Whether you are building a small business from the ground up or managing a multi-national company, you can learn the 7 key traits for leadership success from one of the greatest business innovators and creative thinkers of the 20th century: Walt Disney. Whether you know him as the first to produce cartoons in Technicolor, the mastermind behind the theme park Disneyland, or the founder of the largest entertainment conglomerate, Walt’s story of creativity, perseverance in spite of obstacles, and achieving goals resonates and inspires as much today as it ever has.

Author of the new book Lead Like Walt: Discover Walt Disney’s Magical Approach to Building Successful Organizations, Pat Williams began studying the life and leadership example of Walt Disney as he struggled to build an NBA franchise, the Orlando Magic. Since he was trying to accomplish a goal similar to so many of Walt’s—starting with nothing and building a dream from the ground up—he realized that Walt could teach him what he needed to know. And indeed he did.

Through Walt Disney’s leadership example, Pat found 7 key leadership traits that all great leaders must possess: Vision, Communication, People Skills, Character, Competence, Boldness, and A Serving Heart. Through never-before-heard Walt stories and pragmatic principles for exceeding business goals, you’ll learn how to build those skills and implement them to be effective in any leadership arena. As you discover the life of this great leader, you’ll realize that no goal is too great and no dream too daring for anyone who leads like Walt.

Lead Like Walt: Discover Walt Disney’s Magical Approach to Building Successful Organizations
Publisher: HCI Books
Pat Williams with Jim Denney
ISBN: 9789757321962
September 2019 –– $15.95
Available wherever books are sold.


Businesswomen Taking Initiative

Why Businesswomen Should
Embrace Their Inner Sofia Vergara
Celebrate Women’s History Month By Taking The L.E.A.D.

There’s more to Sofia Vergara, the top-earning actress on television for three years running, than meets the eye, says executive and business coach Debora McLaughlin.

“She’s a wildly successful entrepreneur who embraces herself, including her own beauty, her 40s, her health as a thyroid cancer survivor, her previous status as a single mother, her multiple endorsement deals from corporations that reflect her life – and she does it all with swagger,” says McLaughlin, CEO of The Renegade Leader Coaching and Consulting Group, (, and author of “Running in High Heels: How to Lead with Influence, Impact & Ingenuity.”

“Vergara represents a new face in business leadership. Multiple studies have found that personality traits formerly thought of as ‘feminine’ are now seen as preferred leadership features in business.”

Research done by Pew, Zenger Folkman, and Gerzema, Young & Rubicam indicates the new business values contributed by women leaders. These days, essential traits include empathy, vulnerability, humility, inclusiveness, generosity, balance and patience – which were not thought of as desirable attributes in the old command-and-control boy’s club, McLaughlin says.

Despite the mighty contributions made by female business leaders, businesswomen continue to face barriers. McLaughlin wants more women to take the initiative during Women’s History Month with her L.E.A.D. Forward Formula.

•  “L” is for leveraged leadership. You work it. You will learn how to communicate powerfully, engage in a deeper level of influence, and build a powerbase to support you. Those traits previously thought of as too effeminate for the business world are now spot on in leveraging your influence. 

•  “E” is for Engage. Success doesn’t happen alone. You need your people on board. You need a culture that rallies around shared goals and demonstrates its values in day-to-day behaviors. You need a team that is just as excited about your vision as you are, standing ready to make a positive impact on the bottom line. It’s up to you to move people to passion, positivity and possibility. Learn how to engage and mobilize your teams; get everyone on the same page, and increase performance, productivity and positivity.

•  “A” is for Activate. Many leaders complain about their culture not realizing their responsibility in creating it. Activate will share the secrets of activating a high-performance culture built upon the foundation of trust, courage and innovation. Top leaders take responsibility for driving the company culture with collaboration, joint leadership, transparent communication and innovation. Here, focus on how to create a culture of people who are happy to be part of it.

•  “D” is for Distinguish. It’s not enough to blend in; it’s more fun to stand out as a leader and as an organization. Every leader has a brand and it’s up to you to distinguish it. Distinction is alluring. People want to get to know you. Your teams are excited to accelerate past your competition. Here you need to figure out how your story, your brand and your message will result in becoming the leader others choose to follow.

“How does one become a leader? – What I describe is an outline for getting started,” McLaughlin says. “Every woman has her own heel print for the character of her leadership, but there are helpful guidelines to follow when tracking progress.”

About Debora McLaughlin

Debora McLaughlin is the best-selling author of “The Renegade Leader: 9 Success Strategies Driven Leaders Use to Ignite People, Performance and Profits.” Her new book, “Running in High Heels: How to Lead with Influence, Impact & Ingenuity,” is a how-to leadership companion for women in business. She is CEO of The Renegade Leader Coaching and Consulting Group ( As a certified executive coach, McLaughlin helps business owners, executives and managers nationwide ignite their inner renegade leader to unleash their full potential, drive their visions and yield positive results, both in business and in life. 

Guest Post from Gordon Tredgold, author of Leadership: It’s a Marathon Not a Sprint

I am Great at My Job – Should I Be a Manager

As we progress in our careers, the skills which allow us to advance are usually expertise in our area, this could be accounting, sales, marketing, etc., and this can lead to us being out of our depth at higher levels as different skills are required, e.g. management and leadership skills.

There is a well-known theory, called the Peter Principle, which explains this very well, in that they state “In a hierarchy, every employee tends to rise to his, or her, level of incompetence”.

How does this happen well basically: We do a job well, we’re promoted. Then we do that job well and we’re promoted again. This happens in succession until we eventually rise to a position that we can no longer do well — or to our level of incompetence.

But in reality, the skills required for the new role are different to those that allowed us to be successful in the old role, and we either lack the training or the competence needed.

First we become experts, then we move into team leading, using our technical expertise to lead other experts, often still doing hands-on work ourselves.

This transition is not usually that difficult, as we still have the opportunity to correct mistakes through our own efforts.

But as we then move to being responsible for multiple teams, then we start to need different skills, our technical expertise becomes less valuable, and our management skills become more important, we need to focus on planning, control systems, feedback mechanisms, performance reviews, salary review, staff development, etc., etc.

Probably none of this has been taught to us as part of our earlier role, and then as we advance even further to managing departments, or even our own businesses we start to need leadership skills. Being able to create a vision, inspire the organisation, etc, all of which are a far cry from what we learned at the start of our career.

It’s also true that some of the skills are conflicting and may not help as we advance, someone who is the best football player may not make the best manager. It’s not impossible, but it’s also true that all the best football managers were not the best footballers.

As we progress we need to be able to learn these different skills, often we are provided training, but this is not something that is easily learned in the classroom. We may get mentoring, but by someone who has progressed without the right skill for the role that they are doing either, and consequently they compound the problem. With the end result of  the blind leading the blind, as it were.

I remember my first day as project manager; I had taken over from the previous project manager who was on maternity leave.

Prior to that I had been the Functional Architect, Test and Implementation Manager for the system of which I had now become Project Manager, I thought this was all going to be dead easy.

No one knew the system better than I did, I had designed it, tested it, and implemented it, I knew everything.

I can honestly say that, all that knowledge and expertise was only useful for about 10% of my work going forward.

On my first day in charge I was requested to a meeting with my Test Manager, she was clearly upset, and wanted me to provide some help, dead easy, I was a not only a testing expert but had designed the entire testing suite for this system.

When I sat down in the meeting she said to me “I have found a lump in my breast and I am scared that its cancer, what should I do”.

I can honestly say that nothing in my career, or my life, had prepared me for that moment.

It was then that I realised that leading was going to be a significantly job from doing, or managing.

This had not been covered on any of the project management or leadership trainings that I had taken.

I managed the situation in the only way I knew how, which was by showing I cared and trying to console her, and getting her to seek medical attention.

As it turned out, it was just a lump and not cancer, but for me it was a great lesson, showing me that I still had an awful lot to learn.

I was fortunate that, as I knew everything about the system, the work related to the system only demanded a small amount of my time, in comparison to the time in need to spend on the things not related to the system. Generally people issues.

Only 10% of what I had learnt and new from my previous role was any value in my new role, I had to learn the other 90% on the job, and much of it had never been covered by any trainings I had taken.

My boss had just assumed I had been good at what I had done before, so hopefully I would be good in my new role.

I wasn’t properly prepared for the role!

When developing people for leadership or senior management roles, or when looking to go into business for our selves, we need to have the right skills for these new roles in order to be successful.

If not, then we risk creating the next victims of the Peter Principle and will have promoted someone to a level where they could be incompetent and fail, or we have started a business that could go bust.

About Gordon Tredgold

Gordon Tredgold is the author of Leadership: It’s a Marathon Not a Sprint. Learn more about him at Gordon_Tredgold_Author[1] and about his book at  

Gordon has worked in IT for over 20 years and is a specialist in Transformational Leadership, Operational Performance Improvement, Organisational Development, Creating Business Value via IT, and Program and Change Management.

Gordon has an excellent Global and International experience having lived and worked in UK, Belgium, Holland, Czech Republic, USA and Germany. He also has multi sector knowledge including FMCG, Logistics, Utilities, Telecoms, Aviation, Banking and Finance.

About – Leadership: It’s a Marathon Not a Sprint

Leadership-Its_a_Marathon_Not_a_Sprint[1]Leadership: It’s a Marathon not Sprint, is a pragmatic Leadership guide, explaining leadership principles in an  easy to use, easy to understand and more importantly easy implement style.

The book is split into 26 chapters, one for each mile of the marathon. In each chapter i explain a leadership principle in detail, provide examples of that principle being used in a business context, then each chapter concludes with how that principle was applied to my running goal of running my first Marathon at the age of 52.

This book will be of interest to existing leaders and people looking to move into leadership.

Clear, straightforward advice bases on the principles of Simplicity, Transparency and Focus.

Visit Gordon Tredgold’s blog –

Leadership It’s a Marathon Not a Sprint –

Book Promo: Leadership – It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint


Leadership is a Marathon, Not a Sprint!


Many people aim to be an inspiring leader, but lack the valuable skills needed to be one. Gordon Tredgold is on hand, with over two decades of experience and his new book to try and show us how to use leadership to achieve sustainable long-term success. 

“Leadership is a choice, not a formal position. In this book Gordon shows you how to make that choice.”

Mark McGregor at Leadership Centre GmbH

Gordon’s new book “Leadership: It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint”, (£xx.xx Panoma Panoma Press), explains that success that is quickly achieved is easily lost and reveals the steps to take to achieve maintainable success.

With excellent Global and International experience and having multi sector knowledge including FMCG, logistics, utilities, telecoms, aviation, banking and finance, Gordon wanted to share what he has learnt over the past 20 years in the form of a book.

Gordon says,

“I think I have an interesting perspective, not necessarily unique, but not one that people can benefit from. My approach – simplicity, transparency and focus – is a very practical one, which allows others to easily invest in the process, and consequently deliver outstanding results. My writing style it simple, clear and open, easy to follow, easy to understand, and most importantly easy to implement.”

Throughout this book, the reader will be able to understand what leadership is all about, they will be able to learn how to apply powerful leadership principles, be able to see the impact that leadership can have and become an inspiring leader themselves!

“I truly believe that Simplicity, Transparency and Focus are the keys to success, we often overlook the simple approach, are focused on the wrong, or are not transparent enough about why we do things. In this book I show examples where I have used these approaches to turn around failing projects, under performing departments, and how at 52, fat, and unfit I got myself to run my first marathon.” Gordon adds.

 “Leadership: It’s a Marathon, Not a Sprint”  launched on 28th November 2013. It is available from Amazon now!

About Gordon Tredgold

Gordon Tredgold was born in Leeds, Yorkshire. He went to Manchester University, where he studied Mathematics. He is currently based in Dusseldorf.

Gordon has worked in IT for over 20 years and is a specialist in Transformational Leadership, Operational Performance Improvement, Organisational Development, Creating Business Value via IT, and Program and Change Management.

Gordon has an excellent Global and International experience having lived and worked in UK, Belgium, Holland, Czech Republic, USA and Germany. He also has multi sector knowledge including FMCG, Logistics, Utilities, Telecoms, Aviation, Banking and Finance.

Gordon is married to Carine, and together they have three Children. He speaks fluent French, reasonable German and is currently learning Italian. His interests are mostly sports especially cricket and rugby. Gordon is also into history, cinema, photography, travel and food.

Gordon says, “My reasoning for writing the book, and I think a good hook into the book is that I wanted to raise money for charity, so decided to run a marathon. As well as writing the book I managed to complete it in 6 months with no prior training or experience, even more I got 5 others to do the same (we ran a second marathon in Cologne in October). I will continue to run and one of the plans is to run in Athens next year over the original course from Marathon to Athens.”

Gordon will be donating 30% of profits to cancer charity, one that one of his fellow runners has set up for Ovarian Cancer.


Gordon Tredgold is the author of Leadership: It’s a Marathon Not a Sprint. Learn more about him at and about his book at

To learn more about Gordon Tredgold, visit: If you would like to connect with Gordon or discover more about his work; follow him on Twitter at @GordonTredgold, or drop an email to

Meditative Focus Improves Both Health and Business Intuition

Can Mindfulness Raise Your Net Worth?
Meditative Focus Improves Both Health and Business
Intuition, Says Veteran Consultant

Sitting down with the intention of stilling one’s mind and body is no longer the sole province of hippies and Eastern medicine aficionados, says leadership expert Dr. Stephen Josephs.

Nike, 50 Cent and the Marine Corps all embrace the benefits of mindfulness meditation, he says.

“The benefits of mindfulness meditation do not exist in a vacuum; mindfulness meditation not only lowers your blood pressure, it also offers a host of other positives, including increasing business acumen,” says Josephs, who has coached executives for more than 30 years and recently authored the new book, “Dragons at Work,” (

Dragons at Work

“It sharpens your intuitive business sense. By relaxing your body, breathing evenly, and paying attention to the present moment, you notice things you might otherwise miss. Paying exquisite attention is the key to staying real, and daily meditation builds that capacity.”

The benefits of a calm and focused mind are ubiquitous; Josephs offers tips for business leaders.

• If you’re faced with what looks like an enticing opportunity, don’t just do something. Sit there. Breathe quietly and let the fear and greed subside. The easiest way to fool yourself in a deal, negotiation or transaction is to let your thinking stray from what’s happening and get seduced by a dream. It could be the dream your counterpart is spinning for you or simply the dream of results, good or bad. Like most people, you have probably experienced moments when you knew something – a business relationship, an investment – was going south, but you hesitated to act because you didn’t have facts to support your intuition. Sometimes, your intuition knows something that your logical mind does not.

• Pay attention to what your body is telling you; you may be expressing signals that your logical mind is slow to notice. In a psychological study titled “The Iowa Gambling Task,” researchers gave subjects the task of making the most money possible by choosing cards from four decks. Unbeknownst to the subjects, the decks were stacked. Some were “good decks” (producing winners more of the time) and some were “bad decks,” (producing losers). After about 40 to 50 picks, most subjects caught on to which decks produced winners and losers. Their bodies knew something that their rational minds had missed. After about 10 picks they began to produce physiological symptoms of stress when their hands reached for the bad decks. If you’re not paying attention to those subtle signals, your innate wisdom is inaccessible.

• Meditation develops emotional balance and a better business mind. If you’ve never meditated, try it! Start small by simply sitting still and keeping your eyes closed for five minutes. Feel the weight of your body in its sitting position. Try to simplify your thoughts to basic things, down to the subtle sounds of the room, your breathing. Mindfulness meditation does not require extensive study in ancient traditions. Notice the difference after only five minutes; you will feel more relaxed. Later, try it for 10 minutes, and then longer. Do your due diligence in that state of mind. The equanimity that will sharpen your acumen is also the source of your happiness in life. Don’t trade it for anything.

About Dr. Stephen Josephs

With more than 30 years experience as an executive coach and consultant, Stephen Josephs, Ed. D, helps leaders build vitality and focus to make their companies profitable – and great places to work. His doctorate at the University of Massachusetts focused on Aesthetics in Education: how to teach anything through art, music, drama and movement. Josephs is particularly interested in the intersection of business performance, psychology and mind/body disciplines. His new novel, “Dragons at Work,” tells the story of a tightly wound executive – a fictionalized case study of coaching that produces fundamental changes in a leader. Josephs has also co-authored “Leadership Agility: Five Levels of Mastery in Anticipating and Initiating Change” (Jossey-Bass, 2006) with Bill Joiner, which shows how certain stages of psychological development affect leadership.

Leading Through Inspiration

Inspiring Your Company into Action: Leading
through Inspiration
By: Mitchell Levy

Inspiration and motivation are two completely different concepts, but a majority of managers still make the mistake of interchanging the two.

It’s easy to get lost in the semantics, but the difference can be boiled down to one simple observation: motivation can be manufactured, inspiration needs to be instilled.

Money, job security and career advancement are all effective means of motivation, but they’re also solutions that can be delivered on a piece of paper. Salaries can be increased, contracts can be lengthened and staff can be promoted.

Inspiration, however, is a much more organic concept. An inspired employee is not only more engaged, but they are more empowered and more productive than their uninspired counterparts. They are more inclined to strive for excellence, most notably because they equate the triumphs of their organization to their own personal success. In other words, employees can be motivated because they are inspired.

Leadership expert and author Simon Sinek has long been known for his theories on how inspiration correlates to proper leadership. His mantra is simple. “People don’t buy what we do, but why we do it.”

It’s a strange, if not counterintuitive assertion, but it’s also an assertion grounded in truth. A customer will buy a product not simply because of what it does, but because they believe in what it does. The most recognizable brands in the world aren’t simply successful because of their products, but because of our belief in those products.

Sinek meant his words in the context of customers, but it’s easy to see how his insight can be translated in the context of leadership. When a leader nurtures a working environment that is motivated by inspiration, they foster a team that isn’t afraid to act.

Inspired employees take the initiative to make great work not because their jobs depend on it, but because they believe in the importance of what they do. This, in turn, is a far more effective tool than any raise, or any job promotion.

Inspiring through Purpose and Power

Inspiration is the direct result of instilling power and purpose into your employees. One can’t be done without the other. 

Purpose is the rationale behind one’s work, but it goes far beyond salary and formal job titles. It is the whats and whys of your organization. Why is what you do so important? Why is it important that you excel at your job? 

Power, on the other hand, is not a characteristic of authority, but a characteristic of ability. For someone to be inspired, they need to know that they have the power to act on their purpose. They need to feel that their decisions and their actions have impact on the organization.

It’s through the combination of both purpose and power that an employee becomes truly inspired. It is leadership without micromanagement, an organization fueled by initiative.  When purpose and power come together, an employee realizes that they have the reason and the ability to excel at their job. They are motivated to decide, act and take initiative, not because theyhave to, but because they want to.

About the Author: Mitchell Levy is the CEO and Thought Leader Architect at THiNKaha who has created and operated fifteen firms and partnerships since 1997. Today, he works with companies who are active in social media to leverage their IP and unlock the expertise of the employee base to drive more business. He is also an Amazon bestselling author with eighteen business books, including the recently released #Creating Thought Leaders tweet. Mr. Levy has provided strategic consulting to over 100 companies and has advised over 500 CEOs on critical business issues. Get a free copy of his latest ebook at

Emotional Women

Emotional Women: How to Turn a ‘Liability’
Into a Source of Power
Assimilated Leadership Mentor Shares 4 Tips
for Harnessing Your Feelings

Emotional. Sensual. Intuitive. 

Society tends to treat these “feminine” qualities as liabilities; traits that should be suppressed and discouraged because they make us appear “weak.”

“Those characteristics are in fact the foundations of our feminine power,” says Leela Francis, author of “Woman’s Way Home,” (, which includes techniques and tools from her Vividly Woman Embodied Leader Tools and Training.

By resourcing the power within one’s own body, Francis teaches, “a woman can have the life of her dreams.”

One of the ways to do that is to master the world of your emotions.

“Emotional power is the freedom to feel the truth of your feelings and the ability to harness them so you’re the master of them,” Francis says. “When you can do that, your emotions will expand you rather than consume you.”

Denying, suppressing or expressing emotion to manipulate others all stifle this wellspring of potential for depth and intimacy, which is a source of mental, physical and spiritual joy, Francis says.

What can you do to begin reclaiming your own emotional power? Francis offers these suggestions.

• Indulge your emotions without dumping them on others. When you digest food, your body absorbs the nutritious elements and expels the potentially toxic wastes. Emotions must be digested the same way. It’s important to express your feelings in responsible ways so that you don’t build up emotional toxins and pollutants in your body. This may be why anxiety, depression and panic attacks have become so prevalent in our culture, Francis says. Some healthy, responsible ways to express emotion include creative endeavors, such as the visual arts – painting, drawing, sculpting; expressive arts such as singing and dancing; and healing arts such as massage.

• Don’t demand others witness your emotional expression; and don’t allow others to demand you witness theirs. Using emotional expression to evoke responses from others is manipulative and does not allow you to experience the truth of your feelings. Crying, yelling, even pretending to be happy when you’re not in order to influence someone else’s behavior are abuses of emotional expression. Not only are we denied the benefits of expression, we have to live with our own lack of integrity for using them irresponsibly.

• Make the time to engage in intimate, authentic verbal sharing.The honest, spoken expression of our true feelings allows us to tap the deep emotions that facilitate our tender connections to others. These connections trigger a physiological reaction that creates our own, natural brain elixir. When women engage in intimate conversation, it encourages the production of the hormone oxytocin, which creates feelings of euporia. (It’s the same hormone secreted after childbirth to help our minds and bodies quickly recover from the pain of labor.) It also encourages production of the hormone serotonin, which gives us a feeling of well-being.

• Don’t impose your emotional process on others. We sometimes seek to avoid the discomfort of painful emotions by expressing them outwardly to others, for instance, angrily blaming someone else for our discomfort. Yelling at others because of the emotion we’re feeling only indicates that we have an inner turmoil, and an inner turmoil can only be resolved self to self. In addition, blaming someone else – or yourself! – for painful emotions causes us to become a victim, which creates suffering. 

“These steps will help you begin to master your emotions, and once you do, you will find they will make you richer and more vibrant,” Francis says.

“Our emotions don’t make us weak; they give us the empathy and love that make us care for and nurture our loved ones. That’s pretty powerful.”

About Leela Francis

Leela is the founder and director of Vividly Woman Embodied Leader Tools and Training. A facilitator of groups and individuals for over 20 years, she’s an expert in the field of body consciousness and soulful personal expansion.  Along with her trained staff and apprentices, Leela facilitates Vividly Woman workshops and retreats at beautiful nature resorts all over the continent and appears regularly as a speaker and contributing facilitator at other live & virtual events. Leela divides her time between Mexico, the Pacific Northwest, and the rest of North America.