Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Let’s be optimistic despite the flood of negative news

From time to time my colleague Frank Kretzschmar and I host what we call “Leaders Circles,” where our guests tell personal stories relating to the theme of the day. For our recent one we selected the topic “Holding on to optimism – we can set an example.” In Kenya as elsewhere these days it’s not […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

After MCAK launch, focus turns to building linkages

Along with nearly 50 bright young local management consultants I recently spent an uplifting evening at the Pallet Café in Lavington (where all the very helpful waiters are deaf), to participate in the launch of the Management Consultants Association of Kenya, MCAK, reachable at info@mcak.or.ke. I wrote a column on the imminence of this launch […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Leaders ought to be fair and avoid short-term wins

I’m recently back from London, where for a few days I witnessed up close the vacuum of responsible leadership in relation to the endless Brexit saga. Ironically, I was following the daily conflict and confusion while being there for an event to launch the Institute for Responsible Leadership, of which I am a founder. How […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

How to align universities with the new curriculum

Last week I ran a session on transformative leadership at a four-day workshop for vice chancellors and principals of Kenyan universities. It was organised by the German Academic Exchange Services (DAAD), the Kenya DAAD Scholars Association (KDSA) and the Commission for University Education. Today I will be reviewing the main issues that emerged from our […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Beliefs that can keep you stuck in a maze

Many of you are familiar with that wonderful fable by Dr. Spencer Johnson, Who Moved My Cheese?, which was published in 1998 and has since sold nearly 30 million copies – having been translated into over 40 languages. The book told the story of two mice, Sniff and Scurry, and two LittlePeople, Hem and Haw, […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

How to make yourself suitable for coaching

I recently wrote a column on the coaching style of leadership, and today I return to my favourite current topic by looking at what it takes to be “coaching ready.” Ironically it is often those most in need of such help that are least likely to want it or to benefit from it. Such people, […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Meeting Kenya’s great potential in agriculture

We keep hearing that young Kenyans just aren’t attracted to farming, and that the average age of a farmer here is 60. For years too, we’ve been worrying about the fragmentation of land into smaller and smaller plots, and about the absence of collaboration between farmers so they can benefit from economies of scale. We […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Why coaching is the best style of leadership

In the last few weeks I have paid several visits to Western Kenya, and in different ways they all revolved around the topic of leadership. I spent time with members of the County Delivery Units in the lake region; with a group of DTB bankers based in western Kenya; with staff of the Kisumu branches […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

How to help children gain self-esteem, resolve issues

I was in London recently to celebrate a milestone birthday of my sister Ruth, and joining me there from America were my daughter Amy and her two delightful sons, 11-year old Jack and nine-year old Daniel. One evening Amy and I took the boys to see a spectacular musical play, School of Rock, which is […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

How firms can better engage shareholders

I was recently invited by the accountants’ body, the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya( ICPAK) to run a session at their 7th Annual Governance and Ethics Conference. The topic they chose for me was “Inside the boardroom: the realities of shareholder engagement”, and this in the context of the overall theme of the […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Leading a board isn’t for glamour but hard work

In my last article I found myself in the boardroom and today I remain there, following my invitation by Strathmore University Business School to be a panelist on their “Leading the Board” programme. In what follows I will refer to the main issues that emerged, and I’ll start by reporting on our easy consensus over […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Educating for uncertain scenarios that await us

In the latest edition of the London Business School Review I was pleased to see an article by my dear friend Charles Handy on how business schools must adapt for the future. He opens by recollecting that 51 years ago he returned to England from America to join the fledgling London Graduate School of Business […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Top managers need to boost leadership skills

We are all so busy these days, and the more senior we are as leaders the busier we are. In among the frantic activity and the e-mails, with our ambitious targets and tight timescales, there’s no time to reflect – never mind to invest time in doing so with others at our level. When I […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

It’s not all gloom and doom in government

We are at a time when we’re not sure whether to be depressed by all the bad news regarding the debt, corruption, unceasing politics and other ills that continue to drag Kenya down, or to be hopeful that initiatives such as the Handshake, the Big Four and the Multi-Sector Anti-Corruption Programme will lift us to […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Why I feel sorry for senior state officials

I feel very sorry for those who work in government, and almost as sorry for those who interact frequently with them. For the public servants, it is not aspects like their remuneration or their office environment that I worry about, however inadequate these may be for some of them. No. My sympathy for them – […]

Leadership in and beyond Rotary

A speech held by Mike Eldon at the Rotary Club of Nairobi on 7th February 2019 In Rotary we are all leaders in our profession, and here today we are all past, present or future leaders in Rotary. Sometimes we lead, and sometimes we are led, and in Rotary we must establish our reputations as […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Turkana County is a study in how to treat refugees

A few years ago I moderated a series of workshops for UNHCR to help them and their implementation partners strategise about the future of the Dadaab refugee camp. Their then Deputy Resident Representative Kilian Kleinschmidt (who is now active in Syria) dreamed of seeing the hand-to-mouth refugee camp dependent on mere humanitarian assistance transform into […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

Drop the know-it-all attitude to become an effective leader

In my last article of 2018 I promised to write more about one of my favourite management gurus, Prof Edgar Schein of Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). I described this 90-year old as the father of organisational psychology and organisational culture, and praised the way he was so ahead of his time when he published […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

This is a must-read book for job hunters

Exactly ten years ago I wrote a column on careers guidance in which I described how when I joined the Rotary Club of Nairobi in 1978 the first job I was given was to take care of the careers guidance portfolio. Like most young people making their way through their school years I had never […]

Management Consultant Mike Eldon

How to nudge citizens to do good for society

After my last article on econocracy I don’t want my review of economists to end on a negative note (several readers wrote to tell me the field is more diverse than I had indicated), so today I celebrate the winner of the 2017 Nobel Prize for Economics, Richard Thaler, co-author with Cass Sunstein of the […]