The foundation of great leadership

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on October 19th, 2012 by admin

(From Ken Blanchard Companies)

Self Awareness and Nurturing Relationships—The Foundation of Great Leadership

In our second-ever Leadership Livecast, over 3,500 people from around the world signed in to watch 40 leadership experts, managers, employees, and even a 13-year-old named Jack share their experiences with “Un-Leaderlike Moments.” In a live appearance by Ken Blanchard, he shared, “If you think you are a true leader, turn around and see if anyone is following.” If not, you’re likely suffering from some un-leaderlike moments. Read on to learn more about the key trends that emerged throughout the event.

Self Awareness
In a poll during the livecast 43 percent of respondents reported that self-awareness is the hardest skill for leaders to address and master. Yet good leadership starts with self-awareness. Before you can lead others, you have to be able to lead yourself. Being consciously aware of what your core values and needs are can help you understand when a physiological response starts to rise up in you as a result of a boundary being crossed or a core need not being met. Knowing who you are, what you bring to the table, and being upfront and honest about it helps people know what to expect from you and helps to build the trust that is so critical to leading others.

Relationships
One of the most important trends that emerged during the event is that leadership is not a right of position. No one is entitled to leadership; it’s an earned privilege that you obtain only through gaining the trust and respect of others. It’s all about relationships—people will join a team for the mission, but stay for the relationship or leave because of it. Think about this: giving feedback is so critical to improvement, yet you can’t just walk into a new team and start spouting out feedback. You have to build the relationship first and earn the right to give it. If the relationship is never established, that great piece of feedback may never be heard, or well received, and an opportunity is lost.

Building trust is one of the first steps in building any relationship, and it’s so easy to break. Where trust has been broken, take measures to repair it right away. The only way to recover is to acknowledge your mistake and apologize.

Another hot topic that came up was listening. Are you really listening to what the other person is saying? Or are you reloading your next set of words while someone is talking? Stop and listen with the intent to learn from what the person is saying.

We also learned that avoiding conflict is a fatal mistake that leaders should not make. When conflict is avoided, tensions fester and projects fail. As uncomfortable as they may be, sometimes having challenging conversations is the only way to keep relationships healthy and communication open, and truly move past a conflict.

If you’d like more information about how you can improve relationship-building skills in your organization, please fill out the form.

Rapporten svenskarna och Internet 2012 släppt

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet, Fact Based Management on October 18th, 2012 by admin

Är det något som påverkar allas köpbeteende både kort- och långsiktigt så är det utvecklandet av Internetanvändandet. Läs mer om hur utvecklingen ser ut Sverige och dra dina egna slutsatser om hur detta påverkar er möjlighet att vara framgångsrika imorgon.

Då har vi äntligen släppt årets upplaga av rapporten Svenskarna och Internet. Rapporten baserar sig i år på 2744 telefonintervjuer, ett underlag som ger ganska bra möjligheter att vrida och vända på siffrorna.

Läs hela rapporten här

Ett av världens mest kända nyhetsmagasin lämnar tidningshyllorna

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on October 18th, 2012 by admin

Vem hade trott detta för bara några år sedan?
Ännu ett tecken på hur snabbt förändringarna sker idag och hur snabbt etablerade marknadsförutsättningar förändras. har ni en organisation som är snabb nog (kulturellt, inställningsmässigt och inte minst vad gäller ledarskapet) för att säkerställa morgondagens framgång?

Newsweek slopar pappersutgåvan!

Ett av världens mest kända nyhetsmagasin lämnar tidningshyllorna. Efter 80 år i pappersformat går amerikanska Newsweek helt och hållet över till den digitala världen.

Källa: DN.se, 18 oktober 2012
Läs hela artikeln på DN.se här

Hard facts about leadership coaching

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on October 18th, 2012 by admin

Five suggestions for getting the most out of a coach

So let’s start with executive coaching, which is now a billion-dollar industry experiencing explosive growth. Frankly, it wasn’t very long ago that having coach was sort of a dirty little secret — you kept it to yourself. It meant you were in trouble and probably on the way out. Now it seems everybody has a coach. It means we’ve arrived, that were a rising star, someone our organization is investing in for the future. Wow, what a turnaround!

Our findings in my firm’s executive development surveys (mentioned in the last column) indicated a dramatic increase in the use of coaching: In 2004, 56% of the companies said that executive coaching would be a major learning method they would emphasize. Then in a 2006 follow-up survey, 51% said the use of coaching had actually increased. Given this nearly miraculous change in the status of coaching we recently decided, along with our research partner, Dr. Brian Underhill of CoachSource, to conduct a major research project to explore the murky world of executive coaching in depth.

Our study, High-Impact Executive Coaching, was unique in that it examined the topic in a 3-D manner, i.e., through the eyes of coaches, organizations that retain them, and leaders being coached. The study included 48 organizations and 86 leaders being coached. In this column I want to focus mostly on what we learned from the leaders being coached since it’s highly relevant for anyone interested in either providing coaches to leaders or in being coached.

What did we learn?
First, let’s clarify what we mean by “coaching.” There are coaches for developing leadership skills, improving public speaking, managing transitions to overseas assignments, enhancing “executive presence,” career coaches, life coaches, and coaches for just about everything else you can imagine. However, the vast majority of our respondents indicated “leader development” to be the primary reason coaches were engaged. The biggest change is from coaching being used as “fix it tool” for leaders with problems, to helping successful leaders get even better. In many firms, having a coach is seen as a badge of honor. And we found that coaching now reaches into the highest levels: 43% of CEOs and 71% of the senior executive team had worked with a coach.

And here’s the bottom-line: 63% of organizations say they plan to increase their use of coaching over the next five years. Most telling, 92% of leaders being coached say they plan to use a coach again. Both indicate strong endorsements of coaching; the first by the organizations paying the bills, and the second by the leaders who are actually receiving coaching.

And what suggestions do the leaders themselves have for making the most of coaching?
• Work hard, and smart. Leaders interviewed tell us you will need to dedicate yourself and your time to your coaching experience. Let yourself be challenged, work through discomfort; be open to new ways of doing things. Yet,don’t become too dependent on a coach. You want to accomplish specific goals as quickly as possible. “You have to do the heavy lifting, your coach just guides you along the way,” says Underhill.

• Make sure your boss is supportive, and keep her/him involved. The vast majority of leaders who were satisfied with the results of coaching reported supportive and involved bosses. Make sure your supervisors are behind your coaching effort, let them know what development areas you’re working on, and check back along the way to see if they are noticing improvement.

• Look for a great coach, but not your mirror image. Your organization should offer you a choice of pre-identified, pre-approved coaches (if not, ask for it). Review their bios and interview them. Leaders told us “ability to build rapport” and “business experience” were far and away the most important factors in selecting a coach. Interestingly, “coach certification” and “cost” were the least important. Select a coach you can relate to comfortably, but one that will also challenge you and keep you on your toes.

• Measuring ROI: It’s about you. Everyone seems to be scrambling to identify a coaching return-on-investment; 73% of organizations would like one. However, you can measure whether you have improved your skills as a leader. Underhill suggests conducting follow-up 360-degree leadership feedback surveys or short “mini surveys” to measure perceptions of your improvement as a leader as identified by those working for you, and by your peers too.

• Don’t drag it on. We found that most coaching assignments last between six and 12 months. However some leaders said they were happy to let assignments continue well beyond 18 months. Determine the appropriate end point and stick to it. Much of your learning can and should be continued on your own without a coach.

Finally, one leader told us, “I would say if you have coaching done well, it can change your life, and your life as a business leader.” Well it’s crystal clear from comments like that, and this study, that for some leaders coaching provides a rich and unique development opportunity. For sure, it’s here to stay.

Source: Fastcompany.com, October 2012
Link

Svenskens största utgift: 17.200 kr av en lön på 25.000 kr går till skatter!

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on October 18th, 2012 by admin

Undrar du vart dina skattepengar tar vägen? Större delen slukas av kommunerna och pensionssystemet. Tätt följda av landstingen och staten.

Skatter är hushållens största utgift och Maria Ahrengart, ekonom vid Institutet för Privatekonomi på Swedbank, har räknat ut hur mycket två typhushåll bidrar med i skatt och vart pengarna tar vägen.
En ensamstående löntagare med 25.000 kronor i lön bidrar med 17.200 kronor i skatter per månad. En tvåbarnsfamilj, med en sammanlagd bruttolön per månad på 55.000 kronor, bidrar med 38.000 kronor i skatter.

Läs hela artikeln på DN.se här

Senaste nytt om Lillpaddan

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet on October 17th, 2012 by admin

Inget officiellt har sagts från Apple­håll om den kommande sjutumsplattan.
Läckorna har däremot varit många och den senaste kommer från Media Markt i Tyskland, skriver bloggen Engadget.

Enligt företagets inventarielista finns plattan i 16 varianter med minnesstorlekar från 8 till 64 GB, trådlöst nätverk och 3g, svart eller vit.
De tyska priserna börjar på 249 euro för 8 gb-modellen med enbart wifi och toppar på 649 euro för 3g-versionen med 64 GB.

Enligt källor till nyhetsbyrån Reuters ska Apple presentera den nya plattan den 23 oktober.

Källa: DN.se, 16 oktober 2012
Länk
Fler Mini-Ipadrykten rykten här

Nine steps to more effective meetings

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Leadership / Ledarskap on October 15th, 2012 by admin

Some of my clients say that they use as much as 70% of their time in meetings. There is in other words a strong case to really try to ensure that the meeting time is used efficiently and effectively. Below you will find nine tips to develop your meetings (from About.com).

Another thought – if you use a large part of your time in meetings, why do not you evaluate your meetings and the time spent (invested)? I have helped a number of management teams (read more here) to streamline how to use their time by measuring, set targets and monitor the effectiveness of the meeting (for further reading, www.3s.se).

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Accomplish tasks and avoid wasting your colleagues’ time.

Office meetings aren’t meant for discussing weekend plans, reality TV, or football games—lunchtime is (cutthroat, but true). Still, many of us waste what’s meant to be productive office time waiting on the late meeting-goers, engaging in extraneous chatter, and fielding distractions. According to Susan Heathfield, a management consultant, company owner, and the writer of About.com’s Human Resources section (humanresources.about.com), more meetings would stay on task if people considered both the time and expense required to sit in on one. “Meetings are one of the most expensive things that organizations do, when you think of all the salaries of all the people sitting in. And organizations don’t do the simplest things to make sure their meetings pay off,” she says.

Follow these nine steps for staying on task before participating in your next office meeting:

Step 1. Set an objective.
Determine whether what you need accomplished warrants a meeting before you request people’s precious time. Don’t take colleagues away from their jam-packed schedules if a well-written and proofed email might achieve the same end result. “Meetings should be for making decisions or setting explanations of what needs to be done. They should have a goal and should have an attainable outcome,” Heathfield says. “Meetings should never be set to go over data, to read things, or to review things.”

Step 2. Create a detailed outline.
Piggybacking off step 1, “have an agenda and stick to it,” says Laura Leist, a certified professional organizer and founder of the professional organizing services company Eliminate Chaos. Schedule big-ticket items for the beginning of the meeting, when you have your co-workers’ undivided attention.

Also write out your agenda and distribute it before the meeting takes place. Then on Game Day (aka meeting time) that crib sheet can help you stick to what’s scheduled. The advance prep on your part will also give your co-workers the time needed to do their own pre-meeting prep. “I hate meetings where you show up, look around the room, and everyone is reading a paper,” Heathfield says. “That’s something that could be done ahead of time.”

Step 3. Be conscientious of time.
You know what the meeting’s purpose is and have a written outline of tasks, so now you’re ready to set the time. Be sensitive to the fact that you’re utilizing your co-workers’ time and aim for frugality. “Consider scheduling a 45-minute meeting instead of using a whole hour, or a 25-minute meeting instead of 30 minutes,” says Leist, who tackles many of the same issues in her book Eliminate the Chaos at Work: 25 Techniques to Increase Productivity.

Heathfield adds: “The American populace has gotten in the habit of scheduling one-hour meetings. Take a careful look at your agenda and goals, and set the time frame needed to get them accomplished.”

Step 4. Schedule for the middle of the week and the middle of the day.
Avoid Monday blues and dodge Friday ennui. “Shoot for Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday,” Leist says. “Tuesday is especially great, because you’ve got the rest of the week to schedule follow-ups or find out about actions set in the meeting.”
And both Heathfield and Leist warn against planning a late-afternoon session. “It’s a terrible idea to set a meeting between 3 and 5 in the afternoon,” Heathfield says. “Your co-workers are worn out by that time and won’t listen as well.”
Duck the early morning, too. “Avoid setting something for when people first get in,” Leist says. “A lot of people have stuff left over from the night before that they need to wrap up, or things have hit the fan when they first arrive at work and they need to handle it.” The sweet spot would be after 10 a.m. but before noon, so that people still have good energy and aren’t too hungry for lunch.

Step 5. Start on time.
Set an example of how efficient you want the meeting to be by actually beginning at the time you set. Also consider giving incentive for other participants to arrive on time, Leist suggests. “Set a rule that the last person in the room has to take notes.”

Step 6. Stick to your agenda.
An effective moderator has to keep the meeting moving and put the kibosh on tangents, from funny anecdotes to even work-related issues. “Personal agendas are a significant thing that derails meetings and takes them in an entirely different direction,” Heathfield says.
The meeting’s attendees can share the responsibility by economizing their words wisely. “The more people who speak just to be heard, the more people are going to tune out,” Leist notes. “Be sure that when you speak up, you’re going to contribute to the subject matter at hand.”

Step 7. Stand up for short meetings.
Office employees tend to sit too much as it is. Spend a 15-, 20-, or 30-minute meeting on your feet to get the blood circulating and inspire brevity. “You tend not to get complacent. You’re going to discuss the discussion points and then move on,” Leist says.

Step 8. Give breaks—and treats—for long meetings.
Sometimes a half-hour jam session won’t cut it. But powwows that last longer than 60 minutes should also allot break time. And Heathfield recommends providing snacks to keep energy up for completing the tasks at hand.
You might also try opening a lengthy session with a team-building exercise. “I came up with something last year called my ‘one-word icebreaker’ and my audiences have gone hysterically happy over it,” Heathfield says. “You could go around the room and ask people to describe how they see the company in one word. It helps to get people energized and motivated.”

Step 9. End on time.
Or better yet, end early. Heathfield recommends concluding the traditional hour-long meeting on the 50-minute mark instead. “That gives people a 10-minute window to make it to whatever else they have scheduled,” she says.
“The minute you go over is the second that you’re implying you don’t care about other people’s time,” Leist adds.

Source: About.com, Jada Graves, October, 2012
Link
Read more about how to develop your “meeting culture at G8meetings.se
For more information about “The Meeting Quality Index”, please talk to Jacob Marinko (link)

Två sociala …

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on October 14th, 2012 by admin

…aktiviteter anordnar svenska arbetsgivare i snitt per år för sina medarbetare. Flest personalaktiviteter sker inom finans- och IT-branschen.

Källa: Peak-IT, 2012

Develop your leadership brand

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on October 12th, 2012 by admin

This is an excerpt from the book, Leadership Brand by Dave Ulrich and Norm Smallwood. These are tips about how to provide effective training and leadership development for adult learners so that you are actually investing in developing your company’s leadership brand.

Enormous research has been done on how to train with impact. Here are some specific tips that will increase the impact of your investment in building leadership brand, as opposed to developing leaders:
Offer an integrated model for the experience. We continue to see many training events as parades of stars, with each day or module taught by a thoughtful presenter (either outside faculty, line manager, or customer), then another module from another face, and then another. With little integration, each training module is an isolated event. Branded training requires an integrated message (what our leaders need to know and do to demonstrate a leadership brand consistent with a firm brand) that has distinct modules woven around the brand theme.

Use a host of training pedagogies. Since adults learn differently from another, different methodologies can and should be used. A mix of lecture, small group discussion, written case studies, live case studies, action learning projects, team presentation, video snippets, technology-based learning, simulations, assessment tools, and so forth can be woven into the training experience to ensure that regardless of each participant’s learning style, all will find some methods that work well.

Bear in mind that with adult learners, the faculty should be talking about 60 or 70 percent of the time. If faculty allow their participation to fall below 50 percent of the talking time, participants are in a problem-solving session and wonder what the faculty add; if faculty do 85 percent or more of the talking, participants are more likely to be listening than internalizing what is taught.

Design modules to follow the concept-illustration-action (C-I-A) rational. During a training experience, a host of modules may be woven around the integrated C-I-A theme. Each module should have a clear set of concepts.

Concepts represent the research-based theory and principles that frame an issue, or just the commonsense ideas that clearly apply without rich theory and research. These concepts should align specifically with the firm’s brand and how it relates to leadership brand.

But with content, there must also be illustration, or examples of what others have done with the principles taught. The illustrations may be written case studies of successful (or unsuccessful) firms, live case studies (as when customers attend and share problems), or video cases. Whatever the choice, participants learn by seeing how ideas were actually implemented.

Then application follows. Application generally reinforces ideas with personal impact as participants adapt the concepts and illustrations to their personal situation. With the use of C-I-A logic in each module, a personal understanding of the leadership brand begins to emerge that participants can understand, observe, and practice.

Build recursive lessons (self-reflective and self-learning) into the training. The half-life of knowledge is getting increasingly shorter, so all concepts taught in training need to be analyzed and updated consistently. For example, when IBM CEO Lou Gerstner wanted to increase organization capabilities of speed and collaboration, he sponsored a training experience called Accelerating Change Together (ACT).

The ACT process was designed to achieve a fast and collaborative approach to leading the business, with a focus on team-based action learning projects. Each team identified eight-, ten-, and twelve-week problems to solve, and then worked collaboratively to identify the right people in the world to solve each problem (and then give them eight, ten, or twelve weeks to solve it). As the teams went through this training experience, they continually unlearned and learned how to improve their projects.
Getting an individual leader to understand and adapt a leadership brand may require that the leader be knowledgeable about what the brand requires and reflective about how well he currently lives the brand. Leadership brand is less likely to take hold when forced on individual leaders and more likely to take root when individual leaders experience it through both training and work experiences.

Source: humanresources.about.com
Link

Measure results, not hours, to improve work efficiency

Posted in Aktuellt, Fact Based Management on October 10th, 2012 by admin

Itt´s 5 p.m. at the office. Working fast, you’ve finished your tasks for the day and want to go home. But none of your colleagues have left yet, so you stay another hour or two, surfing the Web and reading your e-mails again, so you don’t come off as a slacker. It’s an unfortunate reality that efficiency often goes unrewarded in the workplace. I had that feeling a lot when I was a partner in a Washington law firm. Because of my expertise, I could often answer a client’s questions quickly, saving both of us time. But because my firm billed by the hour, as most law firms do, my efficiency worked against me.

From the law firm’s perspective, billing by the hour has a certain appeal: it shifts risk from the firm to the client in case the work takes longer than expected. But from a client’s perspective, it doesn’t work so well. It gives lawyers an incentive to overstaff and to overresearch cases. And for me, hourly billing was a raw deal. I ran the risk of being underpaid because I answered questions too quickly and billed a smaller number of hours.

Firms that bill by the hour are not alone in emphasizing hours over results. For a study published most recently in 2010, three researchers, led by Kimberly D. Elsbach, a professor at the University of California, Davis, interviewed 39 corporate managers about their perceptions of their employees. The managers viewed employees who were seen at the office during business hours as highly “dependable” and “reliable.” Employees who came in over the weekend or stayed late in the evening were seen as “committed” and “dedicated” to their work.

One manager said: “So this one guy, he’s in the room at every meeting. Lots of times he doesn’t say anything, but he’s there on time and people notice that. He definitely is seen as a hard-working and dependable guy.” Another said: “Working on the weekends makes a very good impression. It sends a signal that you’re contributing to your team and that you’re putting in that extra commitment to get the work done.”

The reactions of these managers are understandable remnants of the industrial age, harking back to the standardized nature of work on an assembly line. But a measurement system based on hours makes no sense for knowledge workers. Their contribution should be measured by the value they create through applying their ideas and skills.

By applying an industrial-age mind-set to 21st-century professionals, many organizations are undermining incentives for workers to be efficient. If employees need to stay late in order to curry favor with the boss, what motivation do they have to get work done during normal business hours? After all, they can put in the requisite “face time” whether they are surfing the Internet or analyzing customer data. It’s no surprise, then, that so many professionals find it easy to procrastinate and hard to stay on a task.

There is an obvious solution here: Instead of counting the hours you work, judge your success by the results you produce. Did you clear a backlog of customer orders? Did you come up with a new idea to solve a tricky problem? Did you write a first draft of an article that is due next week? Clearly, these accomplishments — not the hours that you log — are what ultimately drive your organization’s success.

Many of your results-oriented strategies will be specific to your job and your company, but here are a few general ways that professionals across all industries can improve their efficiency.

Limit meetings
Internal meetings can be a huge waste of time. A short meeting can be useful for discussing a controversial issue, but long meetings — beyond 60 to 90 minutes — are usually unproductive. Leaders often spend too much time reciting introductory material, and participants eventually stop paying attention.

Try very hard to avoid meetings that you suspect will be long and unproductive. When possible, politely decline meeting invitations from your peers by pointing to your impending deadlines. If that’s not an option, make clear that you can stay for only the first 60 minutes, and will then have to deal with more pressing obligations. And be hesitant to call meetings yourself; you can deal with most issues through e-mail or a quick phone call.

If you’re involved in calling or planning a necessary meeting, make sure it’s productive. Create an agenda that organizes the meeting and keeps it moving briskly. Distribute that agenda, along with any advance materials, at least a day in advance. Appoint a “devil’s advocate” for every meeting, whose job is to make sure that the potential negatives are discussed. At the end of the meeting, make sure that everyone agrees on the next steps, with each step assigned to one participant and with a specific deadline.

Reduce reading
You don’t need to read the full text of everything you come across in the course of your work, even if it comes directly from the boss. Though reading a long article from cover to cover might make you feel productive, it might not be the best use of your time. Most likely, only a very small part of that article is vital to your work. Maybe you need to remember the big ideas, not the intricate details. Or maybe you need only to find one or two examples that illustrate a particular larger point. Once you start reading a text, make it a point to search for what’s important, while skipping sections that are less relevant.

Of course, some materials call for you to become totally immersed in the details. If you are reading an article directly related to the company’s newest blockbuster product, for instance, it probably makes sense to go over every word. But for less important tasks, this level of detail is often unnecessary. If you’re not careful, these tasks can take over your entire schedule.

And avoid rereading your e-mails. I am a great believer in the OHIO principle: Only handle it once. When you read an e-mail, decide whether or not to reply to it, and, if you need to reply, do so right then and there. I have found that about 80 percent of all e-mails, whether internal or external, do not require a response. Don’t let these extraneous communications clog your in-box and waste your time.

Write faster
Even if you need to create A-plus work for a project, it needn’t be perfect right off the bat. When some people sit down to write a long memo, they insist on perfecting each sentence before moving to the next one. They want to complete all the stages of the writing process at the same time — a most difficult task. In my experience, this leads to very slow writing.

A better approach separates the main steps in the writing process. First, compose an outline for what you are going to say, and in what order. Then write a rough draft, knowing it will be highly imperfect. Then go back over your work and revise as needed. This is the time to perfect the phrasing of those sentences.

In general, don’t waste your time creating A-plus work when B-plus is good enough. Use the extra time to create A-plus work where it matters most.

AS you try these and other results-oriented strategies, you may well find yourself spending less time at the office — and that can make some bosses nervous. The traditional emphasis on face time, after all, is easy for managers: it takes much less effort to count hours than it does to measure results. That’s why you may need to forge a new relationship with your boss.

You must earn your boss’s trust that you can accomplish your work in less time. In part, you can do this by thinking about your organization and watching your boss. Ask yourself: What are the most important goals of your unit? What sort of pressure is your boss under — to expand globally, to introduce new products, to cut costs, or something else? How might the boss’s personality and management style shape these considerations?

But it’s not enough to think and observe. You need to communicate — often. Every week, write down a list of your assigned tasks — short-term assignments and long-term goals — and rank them by importance, from your perspective. Then ask your boss to weigh in on the list.

You and your boss should come to a consensus about the metrics for every project. If your boss doesn’t establish any, suggest them yourself. Metrics can include both qualitative and quantitative results. They provide objective measures for judging final results — and move your boss away from the crutch of face time. And the process of establishing these metrics can help you and your boss clarify how best to accomplish a project.

Once the boss is confident that you know what to do and how to do it, show that you can consistently create high-quality results on high-priority projects. There’s no particular secret here: you need to do your best to achieve the established goals. And remember that most projects run into potholes or even roadblocks on the way. Be quick to report problems to the boss and to suggest possible solutions, including a revision the project metrics themselves.

I KNOW that a change in focus from hours to results may be a challenge in some organizations. But your boss is likely to be receptive if you politely raise the question of productivity and show you’re willing to be held accountable for results, rather than hours worked. You may also be able to do more work from home, if that’s what you prefer.

Even in a culture oriented toward results, however, you sometimes will need to be physically present in the office to do your work. And some jobs absolutely depend on it. In almost all workplaces, colleagues need to get together to brainstorm ideas, solve tough problems or build communal bonds. But there’s no reason for these interactions to take up large amounts of time.

By emphasizing results rather than hours, I’m able to get home at 7 p.m. for dinner with my family nearly every night — except when there are true emergencies. This has greatly enhanced my family life, and has given me a secondary benefit: a fruitful mental break. I’ve solved some of the thorniest problems in my home office at 10 p.m. — after a refreshing few hours chatting with my wife and children.

Focusing on results rather than hours will help you accomplish more at work and leave more time for the rest of your life. And don’t be afraid to talk to your boss about these issues. To paraphrase the management guru Peter Drucker, although you don’t have to like your boss, you have to manage him or her so you can have a successful career.

Source: New York Times, October 2012
Read the article online here
For more interesting reading in New York times – click here