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I wear a few hats, and not just because I'm bald (although hats help with that, too.) I'm a trainer, consultant, coach, musician, artist, writer, father, and grandfather. My work is focused on helping people develop leadership skills with clarity, courage, creativity, and compassion. I've been blessed to be very busy doing that, in a variety of venues.

People work with me in workshops, teleclasses, webinars, and coaching sessions through my own business, doug smith training, as an independent contractor for SkillPath Seminars/NST, and as an adjunct professor for the Workforce Development programs at  Bucks County Community College and at Montgomery County Community College.

My training style is highly participative with roots developed with great mentors, among them Lester T. Shapiro (author of the Training Effectiveness Handbook) who gave me deep work with Guided Discovery, with Andrew Oxley (principle of The Oxley Group) whose work with Leader/Shift and other leadership development tools deepened my passion for the topic, and with professor Dr. Jay Desko during my masters work at Cairn University (formerly Philadelphia Biblical University.)

I've also been lucky to have worked with some great leaders who nurtured me through great learning and experience -- Kim Rao, Diane Dudley, Amy Ross, Ellie Willis, Mark Tikalsky, and Dan Arnold, to name a few. While at GE my organizational development work with the team that included Diane Dudley, Eleanor Lyons, and Emily Grace changed my life for the better and sparked the passion for helping people and organizations learn and grow.

As a musician I play guitar, bass, percussion, and keyboards. I also sing, although my little Shelty has been known to leave the room when I do. Feedback is a gift!

My undergraduate degree is in Theatre and Communications and I've enjoyed acting in many plays, movies, and TV shows. I've lived in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Colorado and I'm pleased to be back in Pennsylvania, close to my children, my grandchildren, and the best friends an old dude could ever hope for.

I pray everyday, meditate everyday, and walk everyday and as a result, every day is a good day.

If you're interested in working with me please do contact me here:

or through Twitter, Facebook, or this website.

Here is my resume,  a sample Learner's Guide, and a sample of slides from one of my workshops.




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Compassionate Feedback

What do you do when you know that your feedback for someone on your team will be tough to hear?

Before I learned better, I would sometimes just keep the feedback to myself. I didn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, after all. And they made it this far without that feedback so...

But that's not the most compassionate approach. Withholding something that could make someone's life and performance better is not being sensitive, it's being ineffective. Tell them what's going on. Tell them what you are thinking. Offer your suggestions.

It can still be kind. It can even be graceful. It might even contain a bit of humor. But it's best as feedback when it is clear and to the point.

Prepare for that difficult feedback. You already know that there are right ways and wrong ways to deliver feedback. Plan, and practice. Get it right.

Before you give feedback imagine how it would feel to hear that directed at you -- and then adjust accordingly.
Be the boss you always wante…

Learn From Feedback

Are you getting all the feedback that you need - or do you sometimes avoid it because you won't like what it says?

I've been known to avoid some critical feedback. It doesn't make me feel good. Sometimes, there's nothing that I can do about it anyway. But, by avoiding the feedback altogether I could miss the piece of positive feedback inside, or the advice that truly matters, or an opportunity to communicate more clearly and reach better understandings and agreements.

Feedback can feel like hard work, but it's worth it.

If we want to achieve our biggest goals it helps to know how we're doing along the way.

Goal achievers learn from feedback every day.

We don't have to apply every piece of feedback. And for heaven's sake, we don't have to take it personally. As my much respected graduate school professor Dr. Jay Desko has said, "feedback says more about the person providing the feedback than it does about the person receiving the feedback." …

Truth or Tales?

True story: when I was much younger I was known to tell a tale or two. They were usually rooted in reality, but I'd embellish the truth to make it more interesting. Like that story I'd tell about my trip to McSorley's in New York when I ran into John Lennon. We had a nice conversation. Except, he wasn't there. I thought of him, and he lived in New York at the time, but seriously was much more likely to be on the other side of town. Go figure.
How many times did I tell that tale? Maybe once or twice. Once to my best friend at the time. Did she believe me? Not if she knew me well enough...
How about you? Do your fish stories end up with bigger fish than you actually caught? Do you augment reality with some great tales? I got a great gift last December from one of my good friends and fraternity brother, David Spiegel. It's a coffee mug with the saying "Keep telling the stories" written on it. I love it. I don't think that he meant "tell tales."  I…

Take the Feedback

Feedback can be hard to take but far worse to ignore.

Take the feedback. What you do with it is your business, but take it. Hear it. Stay curious. Move ahead.

-- doug smith

Keep Getting Feedback

Are you a strong boss?

Are you totally sure of yourself?

Is your team a wild success?

Get feedback. Pay attention. Assume nothing.

The stronger the boss, the more compelling is the need for honest feedback.

Promote honest feedback, listen, and continually improve.

-- Doug Smith

When In Doubt...

When in doubt about what to talk about with your team, talk about goals.

-- doug smith

Clarify Your Goals

Clarity on your goals gives you strength.

-- doug smith