Interview… 9 September 2016 0800EST

20160909-radio-interview-2Thank you Jamie Meloni for the great interview at “That Business Show” from WHNZ 1250.

I really appreciate the chance to share my ideas and philosophies of leadership. Your show is a great resource for the local Tampa Bay Region.

You can check out what a great job Jamie does with my interview during the 0830 segment of That Business Show with Jamie Meloni 09-09-2016 8AM. My favorite part was the discussion regarding Power vs. Leadership. Continue reading

Leaders and managers, the important difference

There is a huge difference between leaders and managers.
Never sell managers short, they are the stewards of resources.
Their problems will cost you money

Leaders are the stewards of culture.
If the organizational culture is toxic, it is the fault of the leaders.
Their problems will cost you your whole organization.






















Ken Wrede

Kenneth W. Wrede

Following the EndGame

First, thank you to everyone that has been following me for the last 18 months or so. I really appreciate your thoughtful comments and interest. I know I have been a little slow online the last few months, but your encouragement has made me rethink my blog and the purpose it serves. I have been using my time during these last months for writing and working on a new project.

My goal now is that I want to keep 5,000,000 businesses from failing.

As a step towards that goal, I am launching a new Website called EndGame Leadership.

The early goals of this blog has been for me to capture and articulate my thoughts on a variety of topics that are interesting to me.

One of my pet projects since my EMBA Program has been a personal appraisal of my experience of 35+ years of leadership training, both as a student and teacher. Through that analysis, I have been developing a leadership model that I believe really cuts away all the nonsense of leadership we think we know and presents what is really effective.

I am calling the end result “EndGame Leadership“. There are a many ways people grow as leaders and it is usually a bottom-up, solitary, personal process. They develop their skills on an ad hoc basis and when experience slaps them in the face.

I have taken a fresh approach and researched why have businesses failed? I can’t control anything if a business fails because of market issues or problems with the economy. But, when the research shows that 25% of all businesses in the US fail because of leadership issues, now we have a starting point. When those failures can be traced back to root problems, we know what to fix. My approach was to create a leadership model that is engineered to avoid the root causes that lead to failure.

I would appreciate it if you will check out the new site. Let’s find a way to work together. I can’t save 5,000,000 companies by myself.  (

There is a preview available of my first book called “6 Rabbit Holes of Leadership”. The book is an attempt to help the novice leader avoid the pitfalls that bogus advice gives though that advice seems often compelling. For more experienced leaders, I hope the book helps you to realize that you were not alone on your journey and I hope the pages give you the framework to help those who look to you for advice.

The preview I am including is the first four chapters out of nine chapters. Please sign-in and take a look.

This site isn’t closing, I have occasional items I’d like to discuss, but this blog will be more personal and, at times, whimsical. If, however, your focus is leadership, please head to the new site and follow me from there. Many of the previous resources are there, but the focus is on leadership.

Thank you for your previous and future support!


Suncoast Business Leaders Leadership Panel

This is just a quick note to thank Laurie MacDonald from MacDonaldConsultants for hosting a wonderful leadership panel on 18 May at the Centre Club Tampa sponsored by The Suncoast Business Leaders organization.

Continue reading

Three Fallacies of Leadership

To paraphrase the old saying, “LeadershipFalse 1 2 3 is like the weather – everyone talks about it, but no one does anything about it.” People seem to accept leadership, good or bad, as a cosmic fate that simply happens. If we benefit, great. If we suffer from inadequate leadership, it is perceived as bad fortune and unavoidable.

I do not accept those premises.  Unlike the weather, we can do something about leadership

Leadership development is one of the single most important strategic activities undertaken by business entities throughout the world. To ignore the need for excellent leadership practices is an invitation to catastrophe.

Here is what the science says:

  • Studies show that 50% of all businesses that fail, fail due to bad leadership
  • Effective leadership can increase net margins 1% – 3%

I think there are three main fallacies that directly contribute to poor leadership development:

Fallacy one – “Real” leaders have charisma. Continue reading

I Hate Bullies

French-US FlagsI hate bullies.

I think everyone gets bullied, in some way, as a child.  You hope you grow smart enough to avoid it or strong enough resist or resilient enough to fight back, but you never forget it.

Terrorists are bullies on a global, deadly scale.

I do not use the word “hate” lightly…

I hate them.

I hate them for the fear and misery they spread.

I hate them for the way they seek to destroy our freedoms by attempting to force us to build barriers.

I hate them for wishing to force misogyny, ignorance, homophobia, a mono-deistic philosophy, and superstition on the rest of us just so they may recall an earlier way of life that, from a historical point of view, may have never existed.

I refuse to bend to the will and intent of bullies. Continue reading

Leadership is Like a Suit, Responses

Feedback (0)I had some interesting responses from my leadership as a suit analogy (posting on 30 July 2015).

I thought the feedback would be beneficial to share because the comments are representative of those informal leadership discussions we have all shared a thousand times at lunch, in a classroom, or sitting in a bar.

These exchanges are characteristic of the general conversation of leadership and is a part of the daily challenge of leadership… how do we just discuss it?

The conversation becomes a little circular, but since it all sounds reasonable we just nod our heads with no path to progress.

I present the comments as written.  I know this post is long, so you can skip to the rant… er… conclusion at the end for a summary.

(A quick note here… please forgive any typos or grammar errors in the comments themselves.  As anyone who has ever left a comment in a comment section, finger slippage can be an occupational hazard.  I made no changes to the comments to avoid the possibility of editing out intent.  Please, overlook the grammar to read the heart of the message.
Any errors on my part at are totally mine, unless they are really stupid, then let’s go with finger slippage…)

(Second quick note… Damn, the first quick note was almost longer than the intro.)

Continue reading

Is This an Inspiring Philosophy?

Exec number 1 (0)“…I am a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win…” – Donald Trump

I really have no additional comment here because I would veer away from leadership and into politics.  That would be of no use to anyone.

It pretty much speaks for itself.

In my opinion, I think the best way to view Donald Trump’s current activities as not a part of a presidential campaign, but more as an exercise in branding.  He has never had as much press coverage as a businessman than he has had a potential nominee.

I am working on a paper with my daughter this week and we are discussing brand awareness and brand recognition.  It came to my mind in those discussion that even Donald Trump (a very, very , very, very rich man according to Mr. Trump) could not afford to buy the amount of media coverage generated in print, broadcast coverage, Internet chatter, and water fountain discussion that has been created since the start of his GOP campaign.

He really has no interest in politics, his interest is in starting a discussion… any discussion that features his name.  His flame war attacks keep his name at the top of every news cycle.  It is a genius manipulation of the media (well… genius in a way that makes me want to shower).

His return on this investment will be far above even his wildest imagination.

Either way the campaign goes, he wins notoriety.


Kenneth Wrede

<Update Mario Almonte probably said it better than I…;


“I do whine because I want to win and I’m not happy about not winning and I am a whiner and I keep whining and whining until I win,” Trump told CNN’s Chris Cuomo on Tuesday.

About Ken Wrede
Kenneth Wrede