Howard Schultz, Source: AP

“Crisis management is the new black!” A good friend recently shared that revelation with me via email. I had to laugh, not only because I enjoy a witty fashion metaphor, but because I’ve also enjoyed watching crisis management come of age in the public consciousness. Even in this era of distrust and information saturation, people are warming up to the power of the sincere apology – a step toward redemption requiring that dollop of humility my partner Fred Garcia writes about. More and more, people are welcoming the forward arc of emotionally-intelligent, collaborative leadership on a global scale. Absolutely fabulous, I say!

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What are the leadership attributes that contribute to long-term success? That help get through adversity?

I was reflecting on these questions as I put together our year-end review of crises, The Year of Living Self-Destructively. The defining crises of 2007 were all self-inflicted; even where the triggering event was external, the leader’s handling of the crisis only made things worse.

What these crises had in common was this: the leaders who caused the self-inflicted harm exhibited little, if any, humility. Read more