Increasing your Empathy


I just finished facilitating the Design Thinking Preview for Stanford Exec Education.

If you missed the final Live Session (Intro to Design Thinking), you can watch the recording HERE.

My coaching and the session covered topics including: How to Ask Better Questions, Crafting a strong POV (Point of View), What to look for in your User’s Journey…

Great to collaborate with Stanford LEAD and Prof Zenios once again.

Not all Business: An ode to the Liberal Arts


All Business? NOT.

An ode to the Liberal Arts: My video dedication HERE. 

It’s one of the things I really enjoy teaching at IE Business School and makes the program unique and innovative: It’s consideration of the Humanities.

Oh, and the book? Great fun for your kids – and you. Many people don’t know he wrote it.

What Beijing United’s 20 years in business tells us about a Changing China

In 1994, I started my career setting up an ambitious, western-standard hospital in Beijing. In 1997 we opened that hospital – and now 20 years later had the privilege of speaking with Roberta Lipson, my former boss and CEO of United Family Healthcare, to discuss her reflections on being a healthcare pioneer in China.

“I knew at the time there was a very meaningful opportunity to model a new approach to healthcare for China…” [click here to read more here, article published by the China Research Center]

Answers to Questions on Webinar: “Advance your career faster”

I’ve had a few questions about Wednesday’s presentation, so I thought I’d post the answers.

Here we go…

#1. “Why is “authenticity” not working?” Being open, trustful, transparent and positive may feel good, but is often terrible advice and can damage key relationships. The goal is to be more pragmatic in your approach … I’ll cover more on the webinar tomorrow, and lay out what you should be doing instead.

#2. “Who will benefit from what you’re going to share?” Good question. You’ll get the most out of tomorrow’s talk when…

– You’re feeling frustrated because you’re not advancing as fast as you think you should.

– You watch less competent peers get moved up faster than you.

– You’re in the midst of a transition to more responsibility and leadership.

– You’ve been derailed or sense a shift coming (new management, company was bought, PE was brought in).

– You’re planning or seeking a major role shift.

Or, if you just want a concise refresher on power dynamics and improving your organizational agility.

#3. “How long is the presentation?” I’ve got about an hour of material, then we’ll have time for questions about your specific situation at the end.

#4. “What’s the Power Map?” It’s a tool I created to help you map out the power relationships around you, that will lead you to your goals.

#5. “I am happy where I am / in a small company without politics / am job seeking or just starting career … Will this be useful for me?” It’s a dangerous myth that you are secure in your position and immune to politics. Understanding how to build a power base is critical to surviving and thriving in today’s world.

#6. “Is there a cost to attend?” No. I’m sharing this with a small group of my friends and colleagues that I thought would benefit.

#7. “Can I invite someone else?” Absolutely. I am very passionate that more people hear this important message.

If you’ve not already registered do so now:


Advance your career faster

I wanted to share something new I’m doing with my Executive Coaching…

Tell me…would you want to advance in your career faster, if you could? Of course, right..?

As many of you know, I’ve been working with executives to help them navigate the power landscape inside their companies. The result is always the same: the executive accelerates towards his or her goal.

It’s fun to watch people succeed.

So what makes the difference for these executives? It’s simple really. Let me explain…

BEFORE, they were typically feeling stuck, and often frustrated because they watched less competent peers get promoted faster.

AFTER, they understood the reality of the “game” that’s played inside companies.

The truth is that the stuff we’re all told about how to succeed in the era of “authenticity” is (largely) garbage. It doesn’t work, because it’s based in a fantasy world that we’d all like to believe exists, where hard work and fairness carry the day.

But the grow-ups in the room, know that, as much as we’d like THAT reality, the true reality is different.

On Wednesday, I’m doing a presentation for a handful of my friends on how to map the power landscape in your organization.

This is going to be an intimate presentation, with time for specific questions. I’ll also be giving everyone a new tool I’ve developed called “The Power Map”. It’ll help you figure out the power structures in your company—the ones that matter to your advancement.

Anyway…many executives have benefited from what I’ll be sharing, so I wanted to make these strategies and tools more widely available.

To attend, just grab your personal access link at:

Hope to see you there.


Employ “Design Thinking with Chinese Characteristics”

The holy grail solution in the West is “innovation:” create a killer product that fits the market to create long-term sustainable advantage. Yet McKinsey’s 2015 China CEO survey revealed executives believe the key to success is credibility with headquarters and the local team, followed by people management (finding and retaining talent). Innovation was ranked lowest.

Why the disconnect?

Read the rest of the article in China Currents, a journal of the China Research Center…

哈弗商业评论 (HBR China) 发表了我的文章: “杰出的领导者要接受办公室政治”



HBR Website:

HBR Mobile Phone Version:

Great Leaders Embrace Office Politics (My article in Harvard Business Review, April 2016)

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A rising young executive found herself strategically ousted in an internal power play. Jill had all the chops to rise to the corner office: consistent top 10% performer, hardworking, intelligent, personable, driven, multilingual, an MBA from a top-tier school. Handwritten thank-you notes from the CEO proudly adorned her wall.

What happened?

Read the rest of my article, published in Harvard Business Review (HBR)…