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How important is a mission statement when it comes to establishing or changing a company's culture? I answered by saying that it is extremely important. So important, in fact, that I want to elaborate on the reasons why

Alan Mulally's Legacy

Today, Alan Mulally is retiring as CEO of Ford Motor Company. When I was working on my book, American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company back in 2011, he shared with me some notes he made for himself shortly after he arrived in Dearborn in September 2006. At the top of one of the sheets of paper, he had written "Alan Legacy." Below that, he listed his personal goals — the things he hoped to achieve before leaving Ford.

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The Boss

Saturday night, as I was surfing through channels after a long day, I landed on the 2014 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. The music was amazing and the trip down memory lane moving. What was unexpected, however, was the life-defining leadership moment that Bruce Springsteen stepped up and in to.

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I spoke to a group of Ford dealers in Florida today, several of whom expressed real anxiety about Alan Mulally’s retirement and Mark Fields’ promotion to CEO of the iconic automaker. They are afraid. I told them they shouldn’t be.

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Leadership lessons from mom

Those of you who know my work know that I am passionate about helping leaders change minds and deal with change in their own organizations. Change is not easy.

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Initiating a tough conversation on a controversial topic is arguably a most difficult and draining responsibility. Most people, leaders and teammates alike, dread these discussions so they take the easy way out. They instead, as Rose Fass so graphically writes in her book, “hold a meaningless Chocolate Conversation.”