Two years ago yesterday, BP CEO Tony Hayward inadvertently got his wish when, in thick of the Deepwater Horizon disaster, he told a press conference, “I want my life back.” He was sacked soon thereafter. In  the battle for public opinion—for trust, support, the benefit of the doubt—Hayward lost. It was a failure of leadership on a massive scale. And it began with a failure of communication. And that failure, in turn, was a failure of discipline.
Hayward’s blunder is not unique to him. It should be a wakeup call to CEOs and other leaders, to all who leadership responsibilities require inspiring trust and confidence verbally.
Today SmartBlog on Leadership published an excerpt from The Power of Communication: Skills to Build Trust, Inspire Loyalty, and Lead Effectively, starting with Mr. Hayward’s blunder, and moving from there.