Theory Behind MFS

The Management Feedback System is based on thoroughly-researched leadership concepts, the experience of accomplished leaders, and observations from top leadership gurus. It is a leadership tool and action learning process involving work on real, current challenges. The Management Feedback System uses the knowledge and skills of a leader's immediate team, combined with skilled questioning, to apply proven leadership concepts and produce fresh ideas.

In his seminal work, Leadership, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian James MacGregor Burns wrote "One of the most universal cravings of our time is a hunger for compelling and creative leadership." Burns also wrote that "leadership is one of the most observed and least understood phenomena on earth." Burns' comments ring as true today as they did when he wrote them in 1978.

Authentic Leadership

Authenticity is today's standard of excellence in the practice of leadership. Authentic leadership emphasizes the need for each individual to make a unique, endless leadership journey. Authentic leaders strive for self-awareness and are not afraid to show their real selves to others. Authentic leaders think long-term and put the greater good ahead of their own self-interest. Perhaps most importantly, authentic leaders ask for and actively listen to honest feedback.

Harvard Business School Professor and former Medtronic CEO Bill George is the author of the best-selling True North - Discovering your Authentic Leadership. According to George, "An enormous vacuum in leadership exists today - in business, politics, government, education, religion and nonprofit organizations. Yet there is no shortage of people with the capacity for leadership."

Increasing leadership capacity is a top priority of most organizations, yet many traditional leadership development investments have failed to deliver on expectations. According to Hermania Ibarra, INSEAD Professor and author of Act Like a Leader. Think Like a Leader, "You have to change your mindset but the only way to do it is by starting to do some new and different things that then change the way you think and your capacity (to lead)."

"Experimentation, not introspection is the secret to leadership development." - Hermania Ibarra

The developers of the Management Feedback System believe that if you chase perfection, you catch excellence. The Management Feedback System uses action learning to blend the principles and practical applications of two essential pillars of leadership - values and team-building.

Values Leadership

Relationship theory, or transformational leadership, focuses on the personal connections formed between leaders and followers. This type of leadership is based on values and meaning. By helping people meet a higher good, leaders inspire a high level of engagement and people willingly bring their commitment and creativity to their work.

"People want to be on a team. They want to be part of something bigger than themselves. They want to be in a situation where they feel that they are doing something for the greater good." - Mike Krzyzewski, Hall of Fame Basketball Coach and author of Leading with the Heart

In The New Leadership Paradigm, Richard Barrett writes, "Enlightened business leaders are discovering that ethics and values are good for business. Who you are and what you stand for have become just as important as the quality of goods and services that you sell." In The Ethical Challenge: How to Lead with Unyielding Integrity, authors Noel Tichy and Andrew McGill write "We need smart, gutsy leaders with vision and integrity to get us through the minefields - leaders who can teach others to follow in their footsteps, hold firm to their values, and proliferate those norms across the organization."

The Management Feedback System enables group dialogue and action planning with emphasis on the following value Dimensions:

Collaboration - Internal And External

Collaboration is working with others to achieve shared goals. In a greater sense, collaboration is forming bonds and connections. It is relationship building. By sharing information and ideas, people solve problems and get work done faster and better. Interaction and cooperation among employees, suppliers, customers and other stakeholders is a powerful force. As the pace of change accelerates, the need for people to collaborate inside and outside the organization regardless of space, time, language and other obstacles is vital to success.

Continuous Improvement

Continuous improvement is an ongoing effort to improve products, services or processes. These efforts can seek "incremental" improvement over time or "breakthrough" improvement all at once. Benjamin Franklin wrote, "Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning."


The organization to which you are aligned has its own set of mission and values. The people with whom you interact know the extent to which your behavior and actions align with the values of the organization and this impacts your credibility as a leader.


The value you have for people is reflected in the relative importance you place on the satisfaction, motivation and the general well-being of others versus their usefulness in accomplishing your own objectives.


The value of self is reflected in the importance you place on the full realization of your own potential and the extent to which you lead by example.

Team Building

There are as many definitions of leadership as there are people who have defined the concept. Peter Drucker, who was hailed on the cover of BusinessWeek as "the man who invented management" wrote "The only definition of a leader is someone who has followers." Drucker also wrote "Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things." The developers of the Management Feedback System know that leaders manage and managers lead. We recognize that the art of getting things done through people requires the building of a team that stays together, works together, and achieves together.

The Management Feedback System enables group dialogue and action planning around the following Dimensions that are essential to creating and fostering a high-performance team.

"Not finance. Not strategy. Not technology. It is teamwork that remains the ultimate competitive advantage, both because it is so powerful and so rare." - Patrick Lencioni, author of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team


Accountability is the willingness to accept responsibility. A team's ability to execute and deliver results is directly tied to the level of individual and team accountability that a leader fosters.


The bottom-line of leadership is the consistent achievement of results. A leader sets the tone by firmly establishing the achievement of challenging, needed team goals ahead of individual agendas. Team members are more focused on achievement when they understand what results are expected, know that their performance matters, and receive positive reinforcement for achieving goals or supportive redirection when they don't.

Trust And Open Communication

Trust is essential to an effective team because it helps to satisfy the basic need of safety. Trust means that you rely on others to do the right thing and they rely on you. When people trust one another, the stage is set for open communication, knowledge sharing, and exchanges of ideas. With trust and open communication, a team can achieve truly meaningful goals.

Planning And Prioritization

The ability to effectively plan and prioritize are two of the most important skills for a leader to have. The ability to manage limited resources, especially time, is essential for a team to maximize performance.

Problem Solving

Problem solving is about people working together to make the organization and the people it serves better. The most effective leaders create an environment in which the team approaches problems through a lens of opportunity. They engage people and leverage other resources to develop sustainable solutions.

Talent Management

Talent Management is a group of leadership practices designed to attract, develop, motivate, and retain productive, engaged team members.


An aspirational description of what a team would like to become in the future. A vision is intended to inspire, motivate and serve as a guide for choosing current and future behavior and action.

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