keithmurnighan has written 17 posts for Do Nothing!

For Effective Meetings, Open the Floor a Day Before

Don’t you just love meetings? Yes, this is a joke: almost no one loves meetings. Most people groan, sometimes out loud, when they think about them. In fact, I know people who hate them so much they can barely say the word — they refer to them as “the ‘M’ word.” Meetings tend to be … Continue reading

The Effectiveness of Trusting More

Leaders are always searching for ways to be more effective. Although research suggests that trusting people more is a particularly potent way to increase team member performance, trusting more is not natural – leaders’ natural tendencies are to be particularly cautious because trusting means taking risks that they can easily avoid. In Do Nothing! How … Continue reading

The Effectiveness of Doing Nothing as a Leader

“OK, now here’s what you need to do. You’ve got this great new position, leading your own team, with all of its requisite responsibilities and risks. What you need to do is forget about what helped make you successful and do what doesn’t come naturally. Instead, you need to adopt a philosophy and a style … Continue reading

Lean In / Lean Out

Sheryl Sandberg’s best seller, Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead, is an important, beautifully written book. In it Sheryl rekindles the critical questions of feminism and equality. Just as the civil rights movement in the U.S. continues to need attention to reach its ultimate goals, so, too, does the women’s movement need … Continue reading

The Implications of a Collaboration Economy

Sally Blount, our dean here at Kellogg, has recently been writing about the prospect of a Collaboration Economy.  She suggests that our rapidly changing world is and will be forcing businesses and organizations to take a markedly new approach to what they do and that this reorientation and change is not just smart but necessary.  … Continue reading

Especially Ineffective Interventions: The Basketball Timeout

One of my longstanding mantras is that “too many leaders do too much.” The logical extension of this mantra is that leaders should endeavor to Do Nothing! I am also a big fan of the game of basketball, as well as a big fan of the lessons that we can learn from games like basketball, … Continue reading

Blunting Blame

One of the reasons that I became a social scientist may have been a bit naïve: I couldn’t help thinking that, if people truly understood the reasons for other people’s behaviors, they would blame them less and they could have stronger, more positive interactions. Thus, I had a notion that learning more about ‘why people … Continue reading

Leading to an Oscar

I think I was thirteen when I picked up my first James Bond novel. My parents didn’t know – I was too young (in their eyes) to be reading such a racy novel. Not surprisingly, I loved absolutely everything about double-O-seven. Soon after, the first Bond movie arrived on screen. Now I could devour the … Continue reading

Do Nothing during the Holidays

The data on stress at work are stunning.* Well over half of the people who work report feeling significant stress from work, and 41% of them report that feeling tension and being stressed out at work are typical. Over half also think that stress makes them less productive than they might otherwise be, and over … Continue reading

Understanding Human Behavior: Are We Greedy or Are We Charitable?

People do research to understand the world around them. Physicists find out wonderful things about how the physical world works; chemists discover the dazzling effects of various chemical combinations; and social scientists focus on that elusive character, the human being, to discover whether our amazing quirks are not only interesting but also predictable. One of … Continue reading

Do Nothing by J. Keith Murnighan

“Do Nothing! will stand out as among the most imaginative, fun, and useful leadership books ever published. Murnighan uses rigorous research to provide detailed advice that will help leaders do their jobs better, develop more adept and committed followers, and to suffer from less stress and overwork. Even though most business books present new wine in old bottles, Do Nothing! is the rare book that provides a refreshing perspective and tangible advice that isn’t available anyplace else.”

Robert I. Sutton, Author of THE NO ASSHOLE RULE: Building a Civilized Workplace and Surviving One That Isn't

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