Blog

  • The will to prepare is more crucial than the will to win

    Many years ago, when I was a high school basketball coach, I taught at a summer camp where legendary coach Bobby Knight was invited to speak. At that time, Knight was truly an icon in the trade. One of his teams at Indiana University had recently won the national collegiate championship, the pinnacle of his profession. He was known as

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling
  • How to avoid slipping back into old habits

    This week, I am back with my favorite New York client once again, so their corporate storytelling is top of mind, for them as well as for me. A few days ago, I invited the firm’s CEO to a Stanford alumni event in the city, where one of my former professors was discussing the advantages of public funding for a

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling
  • Lessons from my coaching journey: the mindful practice of storytelling

    As I mentioned in each of the past two entries, I am working with a client in New York whose story I would like to tell, at least in summary form. The identities of the individuals and the company involved are not germane to our discussion, and I am certainly not writing to criticize them. Rather, I would like to

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling
  • A natural speaker?

    As I mentioned last time, my plan for this week was to amplify the discussion of the remarkable ways that Nelson Mandela processed the experience of living in prison for 27 years. After that, my thought was to go on to other examples that shed light on one of my core principles: We can all learn to use our life

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling
  • The value of processing your life’s experiences

    In the previous post, we looked at a personal story from Steve Jobs’, about “connecting the dots”. One of the reasons I like to use this anecdote as an example is that it begins with a commonplace occurrence—a young person’s decision to drop out of college. Such stories illustrate a fundamental point I often invoke in a variety of contexts—consulting,

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling
  • Connecting the dots by looking backwards

    In the previous post, I mentioned a little game I used to play when I was a doctoral student. The research task I had given myself was looking for patterns, or at least shared characteristics, in the lives of successful leaders. My “game” was taking pairs of individuals with highly dissimilar personalities and styles, and then attempting to find any

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    John Sadowsky Leadership & Storytelling