There were many things that struck me when I talked with Logan Bennett, Director of the Canadian Avalanche Rescue Dog Association, during our interview for The Making Magnificence Project.®  But what most stays with me is how incredibly high stakes his leadership position is, working as he does in avalanche mitigation and rescue.  My clients, executives in business, know what it is to live and breathe in an environment where there’s a tremendous amount riding on any number of decisions, where the pressures can be intense, the deadlines fierce.

But I don’t know a higher stake than Logan’s.  Because after an unexpected avalanche, he and his dog Ferra work the debris area to discern if anyone has been buried.

As Logan and I talked about leading under this kind of pressure, we also talked about the background noise of worry and self-doubt that can creep in, even when he’s done all that he knows to do.

But there is something quells that noise, something that permits him to do this work: He knows and believes that any one of his avalanche mitigation team members, seasoned or junior, will tell him to send the dog back out if they’re not satisfied with a search.

They are free to speak up, to speak out.

It’s what Logan expects as their leader.

And he says it makes him more robust.

Are you a leader who listens?

You’ll be able to read about Logan in Ferra in my new book, Magnificent Leadership, which is due out any day.  Therein, you’ll find stories of leadership exemplars of all kinds — CEOs, artists, government and military officials — who risk and learn and quest, people who find themselves challenged and find their way out, people who take what is dealt them and make something greater.

If you’re on a quest for your own Magnificent Leadership®, I’ll have openings for working with me directly in late January.  My clients are talented, ambitious senior executives and their leadership teams who want to elevate their leadership performance so they can take their people with them and drive business results for their organizations.  You can reach me at to have a mutually exploratory conversation.  Whether you want more market share or more margin, the performance of your team needs to be braver and better than ever before.  And they’re looking to you to be their best leader.

I lead strategic leadership team sessions to galvanize your senior team, create more autonomy, and drive higher performance.  Have you determined your 2018 strategic direction and focus?  And who will be responsible for its delivery?  And, by the way, how’s your bench?

One of my most popular keynote topics is “Magnificent Leadership – Transform Uncertainty, Transcend Circumstance, Claim the Future.”  It’s suitable for executive and general audiences alike and has been delivered to rave reviews at national and international conferences.  If you have a signature event that requires a dynamic, interactive keynote speaker who will not only inspire but give people practical tools and techniques, that’s how audiences describe me, and I’m booking well into 2018 now.  “The Heart of Innovation – Building High Performing Teams” is another of my most popular keynotes, and I’ve delivered it at marquis events all over the country.

For more on booking information:

The title of this post, by the way, came from a conversation I was having with two of my favorite people and colleagues, Celisa Steele and Jeff Cobb of Tagoras, when we were talking about my new book, Magnificent Leadership, and I was sharing some of Logan’s story.  And, I recently had the pleasure of being invited to be interviewed by Celisa for their Leading Learning podcast.  That interview will be released on January 16.  Stay tuned for details.

I’ll see you in the new year.