What Can We Learn From Elections?

Leadership is Still the Most Important Issue

As someone who has studied and continues to study leaders and leadership, an election can be a great time to see what the leaders will do.  I quite often use the leadership lessons from andelection when a am speaking, coaching, or teaching on leadership. But when it comes to the 2016 Manitoba election, I have been disappointed. But that does not mean that there is nothing to learn here.  We can learn just as much from bad leadership as we can from good leadership. Why?


Leader Number One: Greg Selinger

Greg has really shown no leadership skills at all over the last several years.  There is no doubt that he has experience as a leader.  He has been the Premier of Manitoba for the last five and a half years.  However, his lack of leadership is distressing.  He lied.  A leader cannot expect to continue to lead if he does not have the trust of his followers.  He made a huge mistake when he raised the PST and refused to admit that it was a mistake.  Real leaders make mistakes but they are quick to admit when they are wrong.  Selinger has not done this.  He did make an “election” apology a little while ago but by then it was too late.

A real leader would have said long ago, “Hey, I made a mistake.  We are going to have to raise the PST in order to pay for things here in Manitoba.  Therefore, we will be holding a referendum to see what the people of Manitoba think of this.  It is especially important since I said that it was ridiculous to think that we would raise the PST.”

Leadership Lesson No. 1:  Be honest and when you make a mistake, admit it and move forward with the permission of the people.

Leader Number Two: Rana Bokhari

Rana has a long way to go to prove any leadership skills and her own handling of the botched nominations shenanigans has not shown any leadership.  The Liberals do not even have a full slate in this election.  She allows her party to jump from issue to issue without any real thought to a unified plan.  The worst of this was a campaign promise that the Liberals would fix a glitch in the booking of provincial campsites.  I guess it was in the news and so they thought they would jump on it and make some hay.  This was a computer glitch that affected a few people and she thinks that it is important to the province of Manitoba.  I will be surprised to see her win her own seat and if she doesn’t, I will be really surprised to see her stay the leader of the party.  There are a number of current candidates who have far more leadership skills.

It is too bad because I had some high hopes for her.  And she had time to learn to be a leader but did not take advantage of it. Leadership is absolutely a learnable skill. Leadership is predictable. It operates by laws. Learn the laws and you learn to lead. But if you ignore the laws then you’re always going to struggle with leadership.

Leadership Lesson No. 2: Learn to be a leader before you become a leader.  Then when the time comes, you will be ready.

Leader Number Three: Brian Pallister

Brian has been the leader of opposition for the last four years and spent time as Minister of Government services, and held leadership positions both in opposition and in government at the federal level.  So he does have leadership experience. The number one thing that I see Pallister has done to prove his leadership is to present a full plan for the future of Manitoba.  He has done other things that show he understands leadership but the plan for the future is the one I see as a proof of leadership skills because

“A leader is one who sees more than others see, who sees farther than others see, and who sees before others do.” – Leroy Eims”

It is not possible to lead if you don’t have a vision and Brian Pallister is the only one of the three party leaders who has a vision and a plan to accomplish it.

Leadership Lesson No. 3: Have a plan and cast a vision.

What other leadership lessons have you learned from this election?

Please enter into the conversation and leave a comment below.

I am so happy to be returning to Temple Baptist Church again this year.  Come on out to this FREE event.

Date: April 22, 2016
Time: 7:00pm
Event: Children's Event
Topic: Family Fun Show
Venue: Temple Baptist Church
Location: 931 1 Street South
Swan River, MB
Public: Public

Manitoba NEEDS a Great Leader

A Real Leader Charts the Course

In his book, The 21 Irrefutable Laws of Leadership John Maxwell states that Law #4 is the “Law of Navigation” – Anyone Can Steer the Ship, but It Takes a Leader to Chart the Course.  Which of the three leaders of the three major political parties in Manitoba has a real plan?

A Leader has a plan


Leaders #1

At this time there is really only one party with a plan.  That is the PC Party of Manitoba.   In fact they had this plan into the hands of virtually every voter before the election was called.  They have charted a course for Manitoba.

better future


Leader #2

The NDP and Greg Selinger do not have a plan except perhaps to attack anyone with a plan.  Or “more of the same”.  But to be fair, they can hardly come up with anything NOW and pretend that it is important. If it were important you should have done it already.  You had 16 years. See my previous post.

Leader #3

The Liberal leader Rona Bokhari also does not seem to have a plan at all and was recently quoted as saying that the campaign promises she is making is what she is hearing at the doors she is knocking on.  That is not a plan.  That is a knee jerk reaction to what a few people say.  That is planning at its worst.  I will promise whatever I can in order to try and get elected.  Her leadership is totally untested and the worst place to test it would be as Premier of the Province.  The Globe & Mail says it this way.

Her agenda, so far, is a hodgepodge of half-ideas ranging from freezing rents and exploring a guaranteed annual income to cheaper booze and opening the province to Uber. Her public performance has been tentative, and her party lacks much organizational infrastructure. It’s not even clear she’ll be able to claim a seat in the legislature for herself. – Globe & Mail

There are those who will disagree with me on this post because of a particular party position or campaign promise.  However, this is not about campaign promises or political parties.  It is about leadership.   As John Maxwell, number One Leadership guru in the world says:

Everything rises and falls on leadership. – John Maxwell

Manitoba desperately needs great leadership. And Manitoba deserves great leadership.

Doesn’t Manitoba Deserve Level 5 Leadership?

Level Five Leadership = Humility + Will

In his book Good to Great, Jim Collins shows how companies that went from good companies to become enduring great companies all had level five leadership.

Level 5 Leadership

“Level 5” refers to a five-level hierarchy of executive capabilities, with Level 5 at the top. Level 5 leaders embody a paradoxical mix of personal humility and professional will. They are ambitious, to be sure, but ambitious first and foremost for the company, not themselves.    Jim Collins – Good to Great


The Leadership We Have Had

Let’s take a look at the leadership that we have had for the past 6 1/2 years and see how it stacks up.  Has Greg Selinger shown that his ambition is first and foremost for the Province of Manitoba?  There is no doubt that he is ambitious.  One need only look at what he did to remain in power during his leadership challenge. BUT, that really only shows that he is ambitious.  By hanging onto power by the narrowest of margins, Selinger showed that he is NOT interested in doing what is in the best interest of the Province.  It was not even in the best interest of the party.

Does anyone in Manitoba look up to Selinger and say “that is my leader”? Or is he just in the position to force his will on us?

If I put a loaded gun to your head, I can get you to do things you might not otherwise do, but I’ve not practised leadership; I’ve exercised power, True leadership only exists if people follow when they have the freedom not to. If people follow you because they have no choice, then you are not leading.     Jim Collin – Good to Great and the Social Sectors

In order to accomplish his will over the people of Manitoba, Selinger had to break a promise and change the laws on the books that were put there specifically to protect us from that kind of leadership.

The Leadership We Need

There is no doubt that we need a leader for Manitoba that wants the best for Manitoba and not just the best for him and his friends.  Remember that we you vote in this election.

Which Candidate Comes Closest to displaying Level 5 Leadership?

How Have They Shown This in the Past?


Why Do Brian Pallister & Rana Bokhari Have an Unfair Advantage Over Greg Selinger in This Election?

Election Manitoba 2016

It almost seems unfair.  Brian Pallister and Rana Bokhari rolled out their plans for Manitoba if they are elected on April 19th.  Poor Greg Selinger has nothing to offer.  After being in power since 1999, he really cannot promise anything except more of the same.  To every promise he makes, the same questions arises. “If this is REALLY important than why haven’t you done it already?  Why did you wait until now to unveil it?”


No, Greg Selinger and the NDP can make no promises except to continue along the same path.  That means we can expect more infighting, more taxes and more lies.

I truly believe that this election is about leadership, because as John Maxwell says,

Everything rises and falls on leadership. – John Maxwell

The Province of Manitoba desperately needs better leadership. And Manitoba deserves better leadership.  And Greg Selinger does not offer that.  In fact he only kept his leadership by the smallest of margins.  A real leader would have seen this as a sign and handed the reigns over instead of making a backroom deal to stay in power.  How can he expect the public to see him as a leader when he can only get HALF of his own party to support him?

In The M.A.G.I.C. of Leadership, the I in M.A.G.I.C. stands for integrity.  This is because no one can lead who does not have the trust of his/her followers.  You see, when someone becomes a leader they start with a little bit of change in their pocket.  When they make good leadership decisions, they add some change into that pocket. When they make mistakes they must pay out of that pocket.  In the case of Greg Selinger, the pocket has long been empty. He is bankrupt.  He has also spent any change he had in his trust account. (See what I did there?).  He is not trusted because he has lied to us about the PST hike and refused to admit that what he did, and how he did it was wrong.  That is why his own party turned against him.

Sure, a real leader makes mistakes at times.  If a leader is not making SOME mistakes then they are not taking enough risks. This is the premise behind a training seminar I present called Sometimes You Win, Sometimes You Learn. We must learn from our mistakes and use that to move forward.

Unfortunately, breaks in character are not the same as mistakes.  It would almost be funny, if it wasn’t so sad, that Selinger would wait until the election has been called to come out and apologize for it. If he had done so from the outset, or maybe even when his own party revolted against him, it might have got him a little bit of change back.  As it is, it is seen as a desperate attempt at holding on to power by a failed leader.

Remember when you vote to think about the leadership that the Province of Manitoba needs now. Trusted leadership with a real plan.

How do you see leadership affecting this province?

What Leadership Qualities are YOU Looking for?



I am so pleased to have been asked to speak at DWAT on April 29th.  These events are always wonderful with great food and great speakers.  I hope to live up to those who have presented in the past.

DWAT is an interdenominational, inter generational and inter disciplinary event with an aim to encourage career people to live out their faith in the workplace.




Date: April 29, 2016
Time: 6:00 -9:00pm
Event: Dinner With a Theme (DWAT)
Sponsor: Canadian Chinese Christian Business & Professional Association
Venue: Marigold Restaurant
Location: 1380 Ellice Avenue
Winnipeg, MB
Public: Private

I will be returning to Linden Meadows School this year for two presentations of “Cool Kids Care”, my anti-bully/Caring presentation9:17 am

Date: April 13, 2016
Time: 9:15 am
Event: Linden Meadows School
Public: Private

Just as Spring Break comes to a close.  Elk Horn Resort Centre wants to share a magical secret with you. YOU CAN DO MAGIC. “Real Magic is believing in yourself.  It you can do that, you can do ANYTHING”

Date: April 2, 2016
Time: 2:00pm
Event: You Can Do Magic
Sponsor: Elk Horn Resort Spa & Convention Centre
Venue: Elk Horn Resort Spa & Convention Centre
Location: Clear Lake, MB
Public: Public