A koan is a riddle or puzzle that Zen Buddhists use during meditation to help them unravel greater truths about the world and about themselves.

The LeadershipKoans newsletter contains an example situation an individual leader or manager could encounter in their professional life. For readers, and students of this newsletter, it should provoke thinking about each situation and the actions that could be taken. In doing this we aim to build our experience in leadership skills. Thus, LeaderhipKoans was born.

You can participate in the poll about the situation that issue, and the following issue will offer a new situation as well as an analysis of the previous one. This will inlude the results of the poll, references to further reading, and if resources permit - expert analysis or advice.

Our mission is, with your help, to create, and share freely and openly, an ever-growing collection of leadership scenarios and community of leaders. In doing so, we hope to help us all prepare to be better leaders and managers.

You can join us on this mission by subscribing, reading, and sharing the newsletter, engaging in the polls, and contributing you situatons. We will keep all the situational content free for as long as we can support this project as we build our community.


The authors of this newsletter aim to be better leaders every day. We have enough experience to understand that many everyday management and leadership situations do not directly match the examples in leadership courses and books.

Situations at work arise in unpredictable ways which result in us thinking on our feet, and responding in habitual ways. These situations are always unique. Luckily, much like no two chess games are the same, there are patterns that we can notice. Exposing ourselves to more situations builds these recognition skills. Instead of having to think on our feet each time, we hope that LeadershipKoans can help us recognize positive patterns and develop better habitual behaviours as leaders.

– Helen & Julius