April 22, 2005
Vol. 2, No. 16

Published Weekly on Fridays
By Leadership University

A Note from the Founder – Mike R. Jay, Master
Business Coach

Leadership and Failure

I think I have a pretty good story to base this
one on.

This week, after completing a major upgrade to our
Intranet on the Internet at
http://www.leadershipuniversity.com, we
experienced a series of failures.

It started with a brief outage, which we thought
was something simple, just the new server getting
used to its new clothes so to speak, but as the
week wore on, a series of cascading events lead to
total system meltdown. An OS failure (operating
system) failure required reformatting the main
hard drive. No worries; we had backup drives in
place, so it was just a formality, or so we

Lo and behold as the hours turned into what seemed
years…the thoughts of outright failure crept in
until finally, it became clear even though we
didn’t really know yet—the worst case scenario had
taken place. A complete loss of data—one year’s
worth. Now, because of a good leadership system,
we had split up our data management into 3
different areas, all of which are backed up. The
unfortunate thing was we didn’t have the third
safety net, tape back up on the database that
keeps our compliance materials. While we can
rebuild that data, it was disappointing to see how
leadership can fail.

It’s easy enough to write about leadership and
it’s hard when you have to look in the mirror and
realize that sometimes things just don’t work out.

What’s interesting is how I internally managed the

As the leader, the place where the buck stops, I
had to face facts; we were starting over in some
ways. In other ways, I congratulated myself on the
decisions I had made earlier to make our system
redundant—running off of several different points
of access. Had we lost everything, it would have
been a lot worse. It’s bad enough as it is, but
because we were “leading” contingencies, it paid

I believe this is my point.

No leadership is infallible. This is not news. But
what we can do as leaders is roll with the
punches, even though some almost knock us out, and
bet on the contingency of failure. Betting on
failure is not a losing attitude, it keeps us
resilient -- at least a lot more so, than betting
on success.

My internal leadership engine has not missed too
many beats since it all occurred and I realize now
I taught myself a VERY important lesson. And it’s
not what you think it is…use tape back-up and RAID
drives. No, it’s a much different lesson.

By remaining calm, and positive, even in the down
moments, I find the people I’m working with doing
everything they can to bring us back up to speed.
Had I used my disgust, fear and anger as is
usually the case, things wouldn’t be going so
well, and of course, I would feel terrible. Once
the feelings pass, if you can get that far,
picking up the pieces is a lot easier in failure
if you’re able to align, rather than alienate.

I hope I really learned deeply the lesson I
experienced on a superficial basis. I’d like to
think I did, but time will tell. Whatever happens,
I’m going to remember that it’s a whole lot easier
to take bad medicine and failure when the initial
taste of it gives way to feelings of deliberation,
alignment and the will to work together.

Failure doesn’t have to be failure when you learn
from it and you can preserve and enhance alignment
around your core purpose. I guess they call that

Now, on to my prayers for a digital healing,

From the desk of Mike R. Jay, Master Business Coach
Founder, http://www.leadershipuniversity.com

P.S.  Please visit my blog at
http://generati.typepad.com/mrj/ to comment on
this and other articles about leadership.

LeadU Classes
Register today to reserve your place


** LEADU MEMBERS, please go to
http://www.leadu.com/forlife to register for
classes.  If you are not sure how to register,
please refer to the FAQ for LeadU. **

If you have not joined LeadU and wish to attend
individual classes, please visit
http://teledevelop.com to register.

W E E K  O F  A P R I L  2 5

Get Clients Now! TM - 28 Day Program - $89.95
Led by Candye Hinton
The program runs for 28 days with two 90 minute
sessions to kick it off on Wednesday, April 27th
and Thursday, April 28th.
at 11:00 AM or 6:00 PM EST.

ARK Building 2005: Leadership and the Business
Cycle - $2.99
Led by Mike Jay, Master Business Coach
Wednesday, April 27, 2005
5:45 p.m. ET

Conversations with Experts: How to Build Your
Business On and Off-line
Hosted by Denise Wakeman and Patsi Krakoff, Build
a Better Blog System

Using Blogs to Help Your Search Engine Rankings
Wednesday, April 27, 2005, 8:30 p.m. ET - FREE
Guest Expert: Wayne Hurlbert of Blog Business
World, featured in the Build a Better Blog System

W E E K  O F  M A Y  2

Minimizing Conflict, Maximizing Connection - FREE!
Led by Bill Murray
Tuesday,  May 3 - 24, 2005
11:45 a.m. ET 80 Minutes

Relationship Coaching Basics with the Reiss
Profile- $79
Led by Mike Jay, Master Business Coach
Two 2-hour sessions, Wednesday, May 4 and 11, 2005
5:45 p.m. ET

Conversations with Experts: How to Build Your
Business On and Off-line
Hosted by Denise Wakeman and Patsi Krakoff, Build
a Better Blog System

Using Blogs to Market Your Product and Services
Wednesday, May 4, 2005, 8:30 p.m. ET - FREE
Guest Expert: Priya Shah of eBrand360, featured in
the Build a Better Blog System

F U T U R E  C L A S S E S

You can register for all these classes and more at

Small Business Branding in the Digital Age: The
New Savvy Solopreneurs

The On Again, Off Again Entrepreneur

Minimizing Conflict, Maximizing Connection

Managing Change Effectively - A Guide to Managing
Organizational Change

Is Blogging a Fad that will Pass or a Sea Change
in Corporate Communications?

How to Create A Product in One-Hour

Women, Ambition & Leadership

Smart Marketing to Women Online

Creative Retirement, Creating Retirement


CPR FOR THE SOUL: Creating Personal Resilience by


Herding Cats Part III: Specific Issues in
Physician Coaching


Herding Cats Part IV: Advanced Coaching &
Leadership Skills for Non-Coaches of Physicians

Details and Registration for All Classes on

We want you.  If you have something to teach,
now's the time to get it on the schedule for the
2005.  LeadU members get free listings in LeadU
News.  For even more exposure, list your class on
TeleDevelop.com as well.  It's free too!



If you are not a member and wish to take these
classes you may purchase them independently or pay
$1,997 to purchase the "Leadership Development
System" which includes all these and future
classes developed through the LeadU Undergraduate
Program. The $1,997 fee will be for undergraduate
courses ONLY.  The development of the curriculum
is ongoing and loaded with classes in several of
the schools.  Payment plans available.

Leadership University is open for enrollment to
the public at this time. Information is located at

We look forward to your participation in LeadU!

The LeadU Team


Payment plan available.


Only those who have joined LeadU will be able to
make referrals and earn $250 in commission for
each one.

 Copyright 2005. Leadership University, All
Rights Reserved.  This information may not be
distributed, stored, reproduced, copied or
referenced without specific written permission of
Leadership University.


Leadership University makes no claims to the
efficacy of this product, assumes no
responsibility for its use and reserves the right
to change, modify, adapt or remove anything from
the program for future sales.

Join our mailing list here.