Cognitive Behavioral Leadership (CBL): Conduct Your Own ResearchPosted on November 3, 2019

Kendall L. Stewart, MD, MBA, DLFAPA

Why are leaders hesitant to do this?

Most leaders insist they are too busy to spend time on research activities. They focus exclusively on their task lists instead. They check their boxes and move on while giving little or no consideration of the possibility that they may be checking the wrong boxes or that there might be a better way to check off their tasks. Sadly, such leaders limit themselves to what they must do and what they feel like doing. This is not a personal growth strategy. Instead, it produces stagnation and decay.

What is the case for doing it anyway?

If you don’t change what you are currently doing, you cannot reasonably expect to produce better results than you are achieving today. And finding a better way is deeply satisfying—not to mention the most effective strategy for preventing professional burnout.

How can you do it?

  1. Conduct a simple internet search. Never has so much practical insight been so readily available to curious leaders for so little investment of time and energy. Just type your leadership question into the search box and click.
  2. Join a process improvement team. In every organization, there are a few groups of leaders who are passionate about improving their daily processes. These teams are always looking for fellow zealots to join them. Research is an integral part of the magic elixir they use to find better ways.
  3. Find best practices. Reach out to colleagues in other industries and organizations to learn how they are dealing with similar problems. In most cases, leaders are eager to share their secrets if they can depend on you to do the same.

How have you improved your beliefs and behaviors by conducting your own research?

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