Leading Well

7 Things that Hinder Leading Well:

  • Pride
  • Avoidance
  • Lacking authenticity and vulnerability
  • Being defensive
  • Insecurity
  • Lack of integrity
  • Lack of empathy
This article is adapted from a Chamber presentation by Nicole Karnowski. To view the full webinar, follow the link below.

Nikki is a business coach and consultant, who owns Metamorphosis Coaching, Consulting, and Training together with her husband Michael. Utilizing her expertise in leadership, Nikki has provided tangible methods to Lead Well, through boundaries, vision, self-care, and personal growth, utilizing the acronym: LEAD WELL.


Learning to pause and reflect.

Whether we do a daily or weekly, schedule time to think into things deeper. We get caught in the busy, we don’t take time to pause. Practice pausing and reflecting. Set time on your calendar to think about how things are going. Ask yourself what went well today? What can I improve? Daily check-ins can be helpful for yourself, and for your team. Celebrate your wins and identify those triggers that created conflict.

Reflection can apply to us personally, as leaders, and with the team as a whole. We can choose to sweep conflict, anxiety, discomfort under the rug or choose to dig deep down. Look at the Why. When we reflect we can identify creative solutions, repair relationships (even if it’s with yourself).


Engage in good self-care.

Self care is not selfish. Find that thing that fuels you. What energizes you? Physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, relational well-being. Remember that what is yours to own, it’s okay to say no. We become free when we can identify your roots – energizers and drainers in life and with people. Surround yourself with people that energize you, get to know your boundaries.

Nikki’s Book Recommendation on Self-Care and Setting Boundaries:

Boundaries, by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend


Attitude and Appreciation.

Your thoughts align with your actions and can produce the good results that you are hoping to curate. Ask yourself What are you grateful for today? What is going well? As a leader, you can also motivate your team with attitude and appreciation. More than 80% of employees say they are motivated to work harder when their boss shows appreciation for their work. Provide that appreciation! You can make a difference in their lives and their work produce.

Nikki’s Book Recommendation on Appreciation:

The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace, by Gary Chapman and Paul White


Dream Big.

People need to know in our organization where they are going. Build excitement through a shared vision. Leaders can leverage vision to encourage employees, give them a sense of purpose. “A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way, and shows the way.” John Maxwell

You don’t need all the details. Start somewhere, and that vision can bloom.


Walk It Out.

Don’t become paralyzed by overthinking or over-analyzing. Keep your focus on the one next step. This can apply to your organization, in your personal life, in running your own business, in your career. Persistent small steps over time equals big results.


Extend Grace.

In leadership, it can be hard to remember that life is messy. Be the leader that can encourage others when they are down, to learn from mistakes and failures. You can help get to the root of the problem to change the trajectory for them. Believe in them, provide empathy while also calling out the disconnect.


Let Go.

Grudges stifle progress. What are you harboring? Who do you need to forgive? What do you need to let go? Set yourself free to live your best life. We can choose as leaders to explore challenges, face conflicts, and be vulnerable to provide a healthy workplace for all.


Live without Limits and Keep Learning.

Our mindset matters. If you don’t do anything about the thoughts in your head, challenge the patterns, behaviors, actions that are negative, and reset your mind. Writing can help solidify those positive thoughts, and furthered by speaking out loud.

Watch Webinar:

Professional Development Workshop – February 2, 2022
“Lead Well”

Presented by Nicole Karnowski, Metamorphosis CCT

The Duluth Chamber is grateful to provide this offering free of charge in 2022 to our members because of the generosity of sponsor – The College of St. Scholastica, Stender School of Business & Technology.