Turbulent times require bold leadership

    In the best of times, effective leadership is critical to the success of most companies. Now, you toss in the worst recession since the Great Depression, and strong leadership becomes a do-or-die proposition for most organizations.

    The question is: are effective leaders born, or can they be taught? In reality, that need not be an either/or supposition.

    There’s no doubt that some people are simply blessed (or cursed?) with natural abilities to lead others. Call them the alpha dogs, call them generals, call them what you will. They possess some degree of charisma, charm, persuasion or intimidation that inspires other people to follow their lead.

    However, many people in corporate American can learn to become better leaders by emulating and adopting the best practices of other successful leaders.

    Tempo Waukesha, an organization of professional women, will present an opportunity to learn from some of the best leaders in Wisconsin at its Pulse luncheon on Tuesday, Oct. 27.

    The event will include a panel discussion featuring:

    • George Dalton, entrepreneur and founder of Fiserv Inc. and Novo 1 Inc.
    • JoAnne Brandes, founder and senior fellow of the Carroll University Center for Leadership Excellence and former executive vice president of JohnsonDiversey Inc.
    • Bill Henricks, chief operations officer for Rogers Partners in Behavioral Health in Oconomowoc.

    I will have the honor and the privilege of moderating the discussion, and I can’t wait to hear what these leaders have to say about "remaining positive in turbulent times."


    I could listen to George Dalton talk for hours. In fact, I have. He has a track record of bold, fearless leadership. He co-founded Fiserv in 1984, at the onset of the savings and loan crisis – a precarious time to start a company whose customers are banks. As the chief executive officer of Novo 1, George is on the cutting edge of strategies for customer interaction. His is a lifetime of continuous learning, and he has much wisdom to share.

    JoAnne is a highly sought-after speaker who has served on the boards of directors at Anderson Windows Corp., Bemis Manufacturing Corp., Metrix Inc. and Highlights for Children Inc. Wherever she goes, she is asked to lead. That’s why she also has served as a trustee at Carroll University, a regent at the University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents and a director at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Milwaukee. She was the recipient of the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Lifetime Excellence Award earlier this year. JoAnne says leadership is important, not only at the top of an organization, but at every level.

    Bill has been working in the mental health field for nearly 25 years as a psychologist and health care administrator. Over the years, he has developed numerous behavioral health programs that help people recover from mental illness and/or substance abuse and live more balanced and productive lives. Bill will discuss what leaders can do to increase their own personal resiliency and how they can foster more resilient employees.

    The luncheon will take place at the Country Springs Hotel in Pewaukee. You are invited to learn more about fearless leadership in turbulent times. For additional information, click here.


    Steve Jagler is executive editor at BizTimes Milwaukee.

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