Courageous Leader: #06 September 2014
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Gerrie Dresser, PCC
The Executive / Personal Brand Coach for Courageous Leaders and Innovative Companies to . . .

Maximize their distinctive value and deliver strategic impact through an engaged team effort.

Courageous Leader . . .
“Live Boldly. Embrace Your Value. Lead from the Front.”

A Personal Note from Gerrie


Can you imagine writing a public note of apology to your customers, key stakeholders or any other group that is highly significant to your company?

That’s exactly what the CEO of Netflix, Reed Hastings, did in 2011.

  • What do you think . . . was it a good move for the business or a positive brand message about his leadership?

Transparency, authenticity, and courage are words that are often referenced when speaking about influential leaders. But one leader recently highlighted the value of a learning culture that encouraged risk taking through ‘little’ mistakes, i.e., those that wouldn’t take the company down!

Unfortunately for Hastings, his poor decision-making that led to Netflix introducing a dual account strategy for customers (DVD-by-mail service and online video-streaming service), resulted in a significant increase in customer’s subscription fee and loss of consumer confidence in the company.

It was a BIG mistake which he backtracked on by cancelling the dual account strategy and sending a public apology to customers.

There are other companies and CEOs that launched product changes that also misread the customer’s intentions and needs completely.

In our ever accelerating business environment, it’s becoming more and more critical to embrace a balanced decision-making process. This process considers what is best for the company and avoids unintended consequences that often result from ‘shooting from the hip’ or getting stuck in ‘analysis paralysis’.

There are a few steps you can take that will elevate your decision process and executive persona. Read our Featured Article, “3 Simple Steps to Avoid Unintended Consequences” and take the Coaching Challenge!

Celebrate Your Distinctive Impact in the World!


Gerrie Dresser
Executive l Personal Brand Coach
Who helps courageous leaders
Accelerate GROWTH through Leadership

Features:  What's Included ...

Speaking Events


From small, intimate groups to major corporate events, our high content – high energy - high value events - are custom designed to inspire, engage and motivate your organization, so that change happens and sticks. Each participant is motivated to face challenges head on and step up to more courageous leadership!

Upcoming Event:

  • Sept 18: Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (HBA) Greater Philadelphia Chapter, Executive Panel
    “From the Executive Suite: Mentoring Models, Strategies and Insights for Courageous Leaders”

Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association (, Greater Philadelphia Chapter
Location: Shire Pharmaceutical, Chesterbrook, PA
Date/Time: Thursday, September 18, 2014: 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Moderator: Gerrie Dresser
Panel Team:

Jeff Conklin: Senior Vice President, Worldwide Commercial Operations, Bristol-Myers Squibb

Marianne Jackson: Senior Vice President, Global Commercial Operations, Shire Pharmaceuticals

Abigail Jenkins: Head of Market Access / Executive Director, Relypsa; Immediate Past President, HBA Mid-Atlantic Chapter

David Nicoli: President, The Nicoli Consulting Group, LLC and former VP of Corporate Affairs at AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals


Gerrie Dresser, CEO of Unique Impact, is a nationally-acclaimed speaker, known for her dynamic delivery of high content, high energy, and high value presentations laced with real world examples and “how to” strategies for immediately actionable outcomes.

To learn more about Gerrie’s speaking and make a referral to your organization, click on link:

Phone: 484-947-5992

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Feature Article:
“3 Simple Steps to Avoid Unintended Consequences”  

  • Have you experienced challenges with the increased complexity in technology, regulatory requirements, and marketplace competition?
  • Is there a growing uncertainty and unpredictability in your organization?

You, as a decision maker, are charged with critical decisions with often incomplete information, conflicting opinions, and naysayers.

Many leaders that I work with need a ‘safe zone’ to process new ideas, test out their assumptions, and create multiple options for a decision, aligning short term thinking with longer range outcomes for a broader perspective.

As a result, they move beyond their natural tendency to get locked into a ‘go/no go’ decision and decide too quickly or delay decision making because of incomplete information.

  • Which is your natural style . . . do you tend to ‘shoot from the hip’ or get into ‘extensive analysis’ that can result in missed opportunities?

A disciplined, strategic decision process requires courage to make the tough decisions, reached through a disciplined, balanced process that includes:

  • Rigor and speed
  • Alternative trade-offs
  • Short and long range goals
  • What can YOU do as either a leader of projects, strategy or people to ensure the right decision the first time?

Paul J. H. Schoemaker, Ph.D., an expert in the fields of strategic management and decision making, “conducted a survey of over 15,000 managers and the ability to DECIDE ranked lowest among six distinct skills crucial to strategic thinking”. Why? Because most leaders are evaluated on results, not on their decision process.

Based on Schoemaker’s work, I’ve outlined 3 simple steps that will improve your decision outcomes and avoid the mistakes of Netflix CEO!

  1. Carefully frame and then reframe your decisions. What needs to be decided now? Will the decision advance the overall goals or is it a quick fix with minimal long range value? Are the customer’s needs and wants considered?
  2. Maintain a balance with speed, rigor, quality and agility. Behavior and patterns are difficult to change, so a team with diverse styles that can collaborate effectively will help facilitate the decision outcome with balance built into the team dynamics.
  3. Be flexible. If your focus is typically on the big picture and you’re tied to the outcome, step back and break the decision into small steps and partner with someone who has a more flexible style.

Your Coaching Challenge:

In the month ahead, invest time to elevate your strategic decision making capability!

  1. Ask your team and others who need to be directly involved with the decision, ‘What other options do we have?’
  2. Break big decisions into smaller components; evaluate these for potential unintended consequences.
  3. Incorporate short-term and long-range outcome criteria.
  4. Communicate where you are in the decision process … are you looking for more divergent ideas and debate or are you ready to reach a decision?
  5. Consider alternatives … test the idea through a pilot program, stage the implementation or change timing.
  • Get in touch and update me on your process and results. I look forward to hearing from you! 

Reference: Strategic Leadership: The Essential Skills

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Unique Impact Coaching


Coaching is a confidential partnership between you, the Client, and your Coach to help you achieve your next level of success faster and with greater focus and clarity. Some of the benefits include . . .

  • Positions you as a more influential leader
  • Earn the respect and trust of other leaders across all functional areas
  • Other leaders easily recognize what's different, relevant and unique about you
  • Create loyal ‘brand advocates’ who endorse you
  • Helps you forge collaborative partnerships across the organization
  • You are sought out to lead high visibility, highly leveraged and credible projects

Gerrie Dresser is an ICF credentialed Professional Certified Coach (PCC) and practical, innovative executive l personal brand coach and thought leader.

If you’re ready to STAND OUT and THRIVE in our fast-paced business environment, contact Gerrie for a complimentary Unique Impact Strategic Consultation at

For more information about Gerrie:

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