9 hidden qualities only exceptional bosses possess

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 31st, 2015 by admin

Good bosses look good on paper. Great bosses look great in person; their actions show their value.

Yet some bosses go even farther. They’re truly exceptional — not because of what you see them do but what you don’t see them do.

Where remarkable bosses are concerned, what you see is far from all you get:

1. They forgive…and they forget.
When an employee makes a mistake — especially a major mistake — it’s easy to forever view that employee through the perspective of that mistake. (I know. I’ve done it.)

But one mistake, or one weakness, is just one part of the whole person.

Great bosses are able to step back, set aside a mistake, and think about the whole employee.

Exceptional bosses are also able to forget that mistake, because they know that viewing any employee through the lens of one incident may forever impact how they treat that employee.

And they know the employee will be able to tell.

To forgive may be divine… but to forget can be even more important.
manager
2. They transform company goals into employee’s personal goals.
Great bosses inspire their employees to achieve company goals.

Exceptional bosses make their employees feel that what they do will benefit them as much as it does the company. After all, for whom will you work harder: a company or yourself?

Whether they get professional development, an opportunity to grow, a chance to shine, a chance to flex their favorite business muscles, employees who feel a sense of personal purpose almost always outperform employees who feel a sense of company purpose.

And they have a lot more fun doing it.

The best bosses know their employees well enough to tap the personal, not just the professional.

3. They look past the action to uncover the emotion or motivation.

Sometimes employees make mistakes or simply do the wrong thing. Sometimes they take over projects or roles without approval or justification. Sometimes they jockey for position, play political games, or ignore company objectives in pursuit of personal goals.

When that happens, it’s easy to assume they don’t listen or don’t care. But almost always there’s a deeper reason: They feel stifled, they feel they have no control, they feel marginalized or frustrated — or maybe they are just trying to find a sense of meaning in their work that pay rates and titles can never provide.

Effective bosses deal with actions. Exceptional bosses search for the underlying issues that, when overcome, lead to much bigger change for the better.

4. They support without seeking credit.

A customer is upset. A vendor feels shortchanged. A coworker is frustrated. Whatever the issue, good bosses support their employees. They know that to do otherwise undermines the employee’s credibility and possibly authority.

Afterword, most bosses will say to the employee, “Listen, I took up for you, but…”

Remarkable bosses don’t say anything. They feel supporting their employees — even if that shines a negative spotlight on themselves — is the right thing to do and is therefore unremarkable.

Even though we all know it isn’t.

5. They make fewer public decisions.
When a decision needs to be made, most of the time the best person to make that decision isn’t the boss. Most of the time the best person is the employee closest to the issue.

Decisiveness is a quality of a good boss. Great bosses are decisive too, but often in a different way: They decide they aren’t the right person to make a decision, and then decide who is the right person.

They do it not because they don’t want to avoid making those decisions but because they know they shouldn’t make those decisions.

6. They don’t see control as a reward.
Many people desperately want to be the boss so they can finally call the shots.

Remarkable bosses don’t care about control. As a result, they aren’t seen to exercise control.

They are seen as a person who helps.

7. They allow employees to learn their own lessons.

It’s easy for a boss to debrief an employee and turn a teachable moment into a lesson learned.

It’s a lot harder to let employees learn their own lessons, even though the lessons we learn on our own are the lessons we remember forever.

Exceptional bosses don’t scold or dictate; they work together with an employee to figure out what happened and what to do to correct the mistake. They help find a better way, not a disciplinary way.

Great employees don’t need to be scolded or reprimanded. They know what they did wrong. Sometimes staying quiet is the best way to ensure they remember.

8. They let employees have the ideas.
Years ago I worked in manufacturing and my boss sent me to help move the production control offices. It was basically manual labor, but for two days it put me in a position to watch and hear and learn a lot about how the plant’s production flow was controlled.

I found it fascinating and asked my boss if I could be trained to fill in as a production clerk. Those two days sparked a lifelong interest in productivity and process improvement.

Later he admitted to an ulterior motive. “I knew you’d go in there with your eyes wide open,” he said, “and once you got a little taste, I knew you’d love it.”

Remarkable bosses see the potential in their employees and find ways to let them have the ideas, even though the outcome was what they intended all along.

9. They always go home feeling they could have done better.
Leadership is like a smorgasbord of insecurity. Bosses worry about employees and customers and results. You name it, they worry about it.

That’s why great bosses go home every day feeling they could have done things a little better or smarter. They wish they had treated employees with a little more sensitivity or empathy.

Most importantly, they always go home feeling they could have done more to fulfill the trust their employees place in them.

And that’s why, although you can’t see it, when they walk in the door every day exceptional bosses make a silent commitment to do their jobs even better than they did yesterday.

And then they do just that.

Source: Linkedin.com,March 2015
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By: Jeff Haden

7 Steve Jobs quotes that could change your life

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 30th, 2015 by admin

He came, he saw, he conquered…and he left behind some words to live by:

1. “I’m convinced that about half of what separates successful entrepreneurs from the non-successful ones is pure perseverance.”

Everyone says they go the extra mile. Almost no one actually does. Most people who do go there think, “Wait…no one else is here…why am I doing this?” And they leave, never to return.

That’s why the extra mile is such a lonely place.

That’s also why the extra mile is a place filled with opportunities.

SJ 1Be early. Stay late. Make the extra phone call. Send the extra email. Do the extra research. Help a customer unload or unpack a shipment.

Don’t wait to be asked — offer. Don’t just tell employees what to do — show them what to do, and work beside them.

Every time you do something, think of one extra thing you can do…especially if other people aren’t doing that extra thing.

Sure, it’s hard. But that’s what will make you different.

And over time, that’s what will make you incredibly successful.

2. “My favorite things in life don’t cost any money. It’s really clear that the most precious resource we all have is time.”

Deadlines and time frames establish parameters, but usually not in a good way. Most people given two weeks to complete a task will instinctively adjust their effort so it actually takes two weeks — even if it shouldn’t.

So forget deadlines, at least as a way to manage your activity. Tasks should only take as long as they need to take. Do everything as quickly and effectively as you can. Then, use your “free” time to get other things done just as quickly and effectively.

Average people allow time to impose its will on them; exceptional people impose their will on their time.

3. “My model for business is The Beatles. They were four guys who kept each other’s kind of negative tendencies in check. They balanced each other, and the total was greater than the sum of the parts. That’s how I see business: Great things in business are never done by one person, they’re done by a team of people.”

Some of your employees drive you nuts. Some of your customers are obnoxious. Some of your friends are selfish, all-about-me jerks.

Stop whining. You chose them.

If the people around you make you unhappy, it’s not their fault. It’s your fault. They’re in your professional or personal life because you drew them to you–and you let them remain.

Think about the type of people you want to work with. Think about the types of customers you would enjoy serving. Think about the friends you want to have.

Then change what you do so you can start attracting those people. Hardworking people want to work with hardworking people. Kind people like to associate with kind people.

Exceptional employees want to work for exceptional bosses. (Here’s what exceptional bosses look like.)

Be the best you can be, and work to surround yourself with people who are even better.

4. “Sometimes when you innovate, you make mistakes. It is best to admit them quickly, and get on with improving your other innovations.”

Ask most people why they have been successful. Their answers will be filled with personal pronouns like “I” and “me.” Only occasionally will you hear “we.”SJ 2

Then ask them why they failed. Most will revert to childhood and instinctively distance themselves, like a kid who says, “My toy got broken…” instead of, “I broke my toy.” They’ll say the economy tanked. They’ll say the market wasn’t ready. They’ll say their suppliers couldn’t keep up.

They’ll say it was someone or something else.

And by distancing themselves, they don’t learn from their failures.

Occasionally, something completely outside our control will cause us to fail. Most of the time, though, it’s us. And that’s OK. Every successful person has failed. Numerous times. That’s why they’re successful now.

Embrace every failure. Own it, learn from it, and take full responsibility for making sure that next time, things will turn out differently.

5. “Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it.”

Don’t know what you’re passionate about? No problem. Pick something interesting. Pick something financially viable — something people will pay you to do or provide.

Then work hard. Improve your skills, whether at managing, selling, creating, implementing…whatever expertise your business requires. The satisfaction and fulfillment of small victories will give you the motivation to keep working hard. Small victories will motivate you to further develop your skills.

The satisfaction of achieving one level of success will spur you on to gain the skills to reach the next level, and the next, and the next.

And one day you will wake up feeling incredibly fulfilled — because you’re doing great work, work you’ve grown to love.

6. “Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.”

Ideas without action aren’t ideas.

SJ 3They’re regrets.

Every day, most people let hesitation and uncertainty stop them from acting on an idea. (Fear of the unknown and fear of failure are often what stop me, and they may be what stop you, too.)

Think about a few of the ideas you’ve had, whether for a new business, a new career, or even just a part-time job.

In retrospect, how many of your ideas could have turned out well, especially if you had given it your absolute best? Would a decent percentage have turned out well?

My guess is, probably so — so start trusting your analysis, your judgment, and even your instincts a little more.

You certainly won’t get it right all the time, but if you do nothing and allow your ideas to become regrets…you will always get it wrong.

7. “Bottom line is, I didn’t return to Apple to make a fortune. I’ve been very lucky in my life and already have one. When I was 25, my net worth was $100 million or so. I decided then that I wasn’t going to let it ruin my life. There’s no way you could ever spend it all, and I don’t view wealth as something that validates my intelligence.”

Money is important. Money does a lot of things. (One of the most important is to create choices.)

But after a certain point, money doesn’t make people happier. After about $75,000 a year, money doesn’t buy more (or less) happiness. “Beyond $75,000…higher income is neither the road to experience happiness nor the road to relief of unhappiness or stress,” says a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

And if you don’t buy that, here’s another take: “The materialistic drive and satisfaction with life are negatively related.” (In layman’s terms, “Chasing possessions tends to make you less happy.”)

Think of it as the bigger house syndrome. You want a bigger house. You need a bigger house. (Not really, but it sure feels like you do.) So you buy it. Life is good…until a couple months later, when your bigger house is now just your house.

New always becomes the new normal.

That’s because “things” only provide momentary bursts of happiness. To be happier, don’t chase as many things. Chase experiences.

Someday you won’t remember what you had… but you’ll never forget what you did.

Source: LinkIn.com, 30 March 2015
By Jeff Haden
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Hard facts about sales!

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Fact Based Management, Försäljning / Sales on March 29th, 2015 by admin

Sales

Do your training efforts drive performance?

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 29th, 2015 by admin

Building organizational capabilities is a top strategic priority, but an inability to measure the impact is a growing concern among executives we surveyed.

Executives around the world are striving to measure the impact of training and employee-learning programs on the performance of business. Half of those who responded to a McKinsey survey last year told us that they see organizational capability building as one of their top strategic priorities, but many said their companies could do better. When we asked respondents about their companies’ biggest challenge with training programs, we found that the lack of effective metrics appeared to be a growing concern.

The 2014 survey, analyzing the attitudes and experiences of more than 1,400 executives in all the main regions of the world, followed up a similar study on organizational capability buildingtraining conducted in 2010. This time, roughly one-quarter of the respondents described their organizations’ capability-building programs as “very effective.” Slightly over half said that they were “somewhat effective.”

A preoccupation with metrics was one of the most striking changes between the two surveys: in 2014, a greater number of respondents said the lack of credible metrics was a business challenge. Almost one-fifth said that their organizations did not attempt to measure the impact of training and learning programs at all; only 13 percent told us that these companies tried to quantify the financial return on their learning or training investments.

Such figures might be understandable in the context of general-purpose training without any business objectives. But let’s imagine a bank that knows its sales performance could improve if call-center employees were better at identifying unmet customer needs. A range of skills might be relevant to achieve this objective. Assessing which skills really affect sales performance and applying metrics that show how well employees deploy them are critical for allocating training resources effectively and for actually boosting sales.

What the leaders do
Perhaps the most instructive answers in the 2014 survey came from executives at the 14 percent of organizations who identified capability building as a top-three strategic priority and told us that their companies’ learning programs for leaders and frontline staff were “very effective” at preparing them to improve business performance. These executives were much likelier than others to say that their companies use a range of both qualitative and quantitative metrics to assess the impact of programs and were generally better at meeting the stated targets.

Significantly, this group also attached greater significance than the others to cooperation between the human-resources function and the business units. This finding is consistent with our experience that the impact of learning on business results is greater when both sides “co-own” it. A US-government agency, for example, found that tailored programs jointly operated by training specialists and experts (in functions ranging from operations to engineering) helped identify opportunities to save more than $1.7 billion.

Innovation and accountability
Such co-ownership may be achieved through a variety of different structures. Some organizations create corporate academies. One of Asia’s largest petrochemical companies, for example, recently established a corporate “university” staffed with HR personnel, with functional and business heads serving as “deans.” The latter not only design the company’s programs but also implement them. Other organizations create learning functions that report both to HR and the businesses.

HR and learning specialists need to take the lead in developing assessment processes and competency maps. They should also assume responsibility for integrating learning and development with the overall talent-management system: performance assessments, role definitions, career pathways, and the like. Sharing responsibilities—with HR guiding the “how” and the businesses the “what”—has a number of practical advantages, starting with the greater relevance of the resulting programs to the actual work of employees. That, in turn, improves a program’s credibility and effectiveness, thereby encouraging additional investment. When senior leaders become more confident about a program’s contribution to business performance, they start thinking, as they assess strategic choices, about potential capability gaps and become better able to estimate the potential value of filling them.

Source: McKinsey Quaterly, March 2015
Authors: Richard Benson-Amer, Silker-Susann Otto and Nick van Dam
About the authors: Richard Benson-Armer is a director in McKinsey’s Stamford office, Silke-Susann Otto is a consultant in the Hong Kong office, and Nick van Dam is McKinsey’s global chief learning officer, based in the Amsterdam office.
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For more reading about how to measure the impact of your investments in training

Vill du kunna påverka dagens och morgondagens företag?

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 27th, 2015 by admin

BOARD ASSESSMENT ASSOCIATE

Vill du kunna påverka dagens och morgondagens företag?

Är Du nyfiken på hur styrelsearbete går till i praktiken?

Klarar Du av många bollar i luften och gillar ett högt tempo?

Vill Du själv ta mycket ansvar tidigt i Din karriär?

Är Du en ”strukturerad entreprenör”?

DÅ ÄR VI RÄTT FÖR DIG OCH DU FÖR OSS!

LRAB

VILKA ÄR VI?
Lagercrantz Reinfeldt är en av de ledande konsultfirmorna inom Executive Search (s k headhunting) och Board Assessment (styrelseutvärdering). Vi arbetar som rådgivare i styrelserummet med identifiera och rekrytera VD och andra seniora personer samt styrelseledamöter. Våra klienter är nordiska och internationella välkända bolag och finansiella institutioner, som t.ex. kan vara börsnoterade eller Private Equity-backade.

Vår verksamhet inom Board Assessment/styrelseutvärdering är i kraftig tillväxt. Detta beror dels på att våra klienter är mycket nöjda med kvaliteten av vårt arbete och dels på att efterfrågan på att kvalitetssäkra styrelsearbetet ökar i takt med att bolagsstyrning blir allt mer komplex i Norden och internationellt. Det är ett spännande område, tycker vi.

För några år sedan så etablerade vi en egen modell/verktyg för att möta näringslivets ökade efterfråga på styrelseutvärdering. Nu behöver vi rekrytera en utåtriktad och pro-aktiv Associate som är intresserad av att vara med och utveckla en framgångsrik verksamhet vidare.

Vi erbjuder en stimulerande miljö med högt tempo, varierande arbetsuppgifter där Du tidigt får ha egna kontakter med personer i näringslivet på högsta nivå. Vi förväntar oss att Du har höga ambitioner gällande Din egen utveckling.

Vårt kännetecken är hög kompetens och entreprenörskap i strukturerad form. Arbetet präglas av professionalism och förtroenden i kombination med nytänkande, strikt fokus på kvalitet och personligt engagemang. Vi är en oberoende firma med högt anseende.

Vårt kontor är beläget centralt i Stockholm.

VAD GÖR EN BOARD ASSESSMENT ASSOCIATE HOS OSS?
Ditt arbete hos oss innebär två delar. Den ena är att vara med i den entreprenöriella delen av verksamheten genom att tillsammans med oss vidareutveckla vår utvärderingsmodell genom eget kreativt arbete och genom att tillgodogöra Dig samtal och möten med experter på området. Här finns det plats för många egna initiativ och begåvade idéer. Den andra delen består av att ”hands on” arbeta med oss i möten och samtal med ägare och styrelseordföranden i införsäljningsfasen samt i projekt analysera och utvärdera bolagsstyrelsers arbete och effektivitet. Så småningom vill vi att Du ko-ordinerar och leder dessa projekt med vår hjälp. Du arbetar självständigt, men samtidigt nära oss konsulter.

Du kommer även att ha en del kontakter med vårt partner-bolag som har utvecklat den avancerade tekniska plattform som vi använder för att våra resultat skall komma ut ”användarvänliga” och värdeskapande.

Du förväntas också proaktivt arbeta med att utöka vår databas och följa viktiga sektorer, affärshändelser och skeenden i näringslivet, både i Sverige och internationellt.

VEM SÖKER VI?
Vi söker dig som är intresserad av näringslivet, både av bolag och individer, och hur de samverkar och agerar. En fördel är om Du redan nu har viss förståelse för regler och rekommendationer gällande bolagsstyrning och styrelsers ansvar och arbete.

Arbetet är utåtriktat, vilket innebär många kontakter med kvalificerade personer. Du är orädd, duktig på att tala med människor på olika nivåer och älskar att proaktivt skapa och utveckla nätverk. Du kommer att hantera många presentationer, klientrapporter och annan dokumentation, vilket ställer krav på struktur, noggrannhet, samt förmåga att prioritera. Du förväntas leverera med högsta kvalitet i allt du gör och agera professionellt och förtroligt i alla situationer.

Lagercrantz Reinfeldt AB är ett växande bolag där alla förväntas bidra långsiktigt. Det betyder att Du behöver vara flexibel, entreprenöriell, engagerad med mycket god samarbetsförmåga. Du bör vara nyfiken och ha en positiv attityd och personlighet. Det finns dagliga sysslor i ett litet bolag som alla behöver hjälpas åt med, så även Du.

PROFIL
• Akademisk examen från välmeriterat universitet, företrädesvis jur. kand eller civ. ek.
• 3-6 års arbetslivserfarenhet från konsultfirma, gärna från advokatbyrå, strategikonsulting eller liknande
• Genuint intresse för svenskt och internationellt näringsliv; bolag såväl som människor
• Erfarenhet och förmåga att självständigt driva många projekt samtidigt med höga krav på kvalitet, tempo och flexibilitet
• Mycket god analytisk och kreativ förmåga
• Utmärkt kommunikationsförmåga, muntligt och skriftligt
• Flytande engelska i tal och skrift
• Goda kunskaper i Microsoft Office, inklusive PowerPoint

Vi ser mycket fram emot Din ansökan senast den 15 april till:
caroline@lagercrantzreinfeldt.com

För frågor, kontakta Monica Lagercrantz på 070-606 63 64

Det svenska mötet – en hatkärlekshistoria

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 27th, 2015 by admin

Inget annat land i världen har lika många möten som Sverige. Från måndagsmötet till fredagsfikat är våra arbetsveckor proppfulla av dem. Men hur effektiva är de, egentligen?

Enligt en kartläggning av svenska organisationers möten, gjord av organisationen 3S, tillägnar den genomsnittliga tjänstearbetaren omkring 30 procent av sin arbetstid åt interna möten. I samma studie fann de att fler än fyra av tio tycker att de flesta möten som de deltar i saknar mening. Och i princip alla var rörande överens om att de hade för många möten. Men enligt mötesexperten Jacob Marinko från 3S är det grundläggande problemet i den svenska möteskulturen inte att vi har för många möten. Utan att vi har för få bra möten.
Jacob-Marinko-2014_195”Problemen uppstår när man har ett möte för mötets egen skull snarare än att uppnå sina mål. Känslan av att man har för många möten beror framförallt på att vi saknar strukturer för varför och hur de ska användas. Ett tecken på det är att drygt hälften av alla möten saknar syfte och mål. Jag brukar säga att om man har skrivit ned punkten ”övrigt” på agendan så har mötet inte ett tillräckligt tydligt syfte.”

En vanlig föreställning är att mötestiden äter upp vår arbetstid. Det ligger förstås en sanning i det. Särskilt om du tycker att mötet du befinner dig på är meningslöst och att du själv inte bidrar med något. När vi har hittat ett syfte till vårt möte bör vi därför ifrågasätta gästlistorna. Vem deltar? Är vi för många? Kom ihåg att även mötestid är arbetstid – och pengar.

När Applegrundaren Steve Jobs blev inbjuden till ett möte med president Barack Obama och flera andra teknikguruer tackade han nej. Gästlistan var för lång. För många hjärnor ställer sig i vägen för enkelheten, menade Jobs.

”Vi tillbringar i genomsnitt fem arbetsveckor om året i möten som vi själva inte upplever som effektivt använd tid”, säger Jacob Marinko, mötesexpert från organisationen 3S.

Med det svenska konsensustänket där alla ska med tenderar vi att bjuda in för många till våra möten. Även de som inte påverkas eller har något intresse av ämnet ska delta. Men vår strävan att få alla att känna sig delaktiga får ofta motsatt effekt. Om vi ägnar 30 procent av vår arbetstid i möten, varav bara hälften känns meningsfulla, så kastar vi i princip bort 15 procent av vår arbetstid.

Ingen tid att förbereda
En naturlig följd av att vi upplever att vi har för många möten är att vi inte hinner förbereda dem. Enligt 3S undersökning uppger 52 procent av de tillfrågade att deras möten inte är tillräckligt väl förberedda. Ett dåligt förberett möte är inte nödvändigtvis detsamma som ett ineffektivt möte, men risken är överhängande.

Någon som har funderat mycket på hur våra lösningsorienterade möten ser ut – och varför de behöver förändras – är Eva Åberg. Mediechefen som blev ledarutvecklare:
”På ett idémöte är det vanligt att man tar fram tre till fem idéer och fattar beslut på ett väldigt litet urval. Det kanske räcker om du inte behöver vara nyskapande. Men om du vill skapa nya och intressanta lösningar måste du först tömma ditt ”arkiv” genom att komma på minst 20–25 idéer. Alltså fortsätta just när det känns som om idéerna tar slut.”

Flera nya mötestekniker fokuserar på att minska på tiden vi ägnar åt sammanträden. Speedmötet lånar tekniker från speeddaten, powermötet ska vara avklarat på 15 minuter och ett stående möte i korridoren utanför konferensrummet blir automatiskt kortare än ett sittande möte inne i konferensrummet. Att det finns så många mötestrender är ett tecken på att vi letar efter en hållbar struktur

Vi klagar gärna på att vi inte hinner arbeta på grund av alla möten. Men vad händer om vi vänder på resonemanget? Utan möten hade vi antagligen inte vetat vad det är för arbete vi inte hinner göra. Självändamålet bör inte vara att minska antalet möten. Att möteskvantiteten minskar bör snarare vara en positiv effekt av att kvaliteten ökar.

5 tips till det perfekta mötet
Det finns inga genvägar till det perfekta mötet. Men om det fanns det så skulle det här vara några av dem.

Syfte och mål
Ett möte utan ett tydligt syfte och uppnåbara mål är på sin höjd en fika.

Förbered dig
Ett väl förberett möte håller sig oftare inom tidsramarna – och till agendan.

Endast berörda
Ägna lika mycket tid åt gästlistan som åt agendan. Alla som deltar i mötet ska vara medvetna om sin roll.

Fatta beslut
Om mötet är väl förberett, har ett tydligt syfte och rätt personer deltar blir det lättare att fatta beslut.

Ifrågasätt mötet
Om ditt möte inte uppfyller nämnda punkter så bör du ifrågasätta varför du har bokat in det.

Källa: Abb.se, mars 2015
Länk
Läs mer om hur ni kan effektivisera ert mötetesarbete här

Delighting in the possible

Posted in Aktuellt, Executive Team / Ledningsgruppsarbete, Leadership / Ledarskap, Strategy implementation / Strategiimplementering on March 25th, 2015 by admin

In an unpredictable world, executives should stretch beyond managing the probable.

It’s only natural to seek certainty, especially in the face of the unknown. Long ago, shamans performed intricate dances to summon rain. It didn’t matter that any success they enjoyed was random, as long as the tribe felt that its water supply was in capable hands. Nowadays, late nights of number crunching, feasts of modeling, and the familiar rituals of presentations have replaced the rain dances of old. But often, the odds of generating reliable insights are not much better.

change 3Perhaps that’s because our approach to the hardest problems—and the anxiety those problems create—is fundamentally misdirected. When most of us face a challenge, we typically fall back on our standard operating procedures. Call this “managing the probable.” In much of our education, and in many of our formative experiences, we’ve learned that some simple problems have one right answer. For more complicated problems, accepted algorithms can help us work out the best answer from among available options. We respond to uncertainty with analysis or leave that analysis to the experienced hands of others. We look for leaders who know the way forward and offer some assurance of predictability.

This way of approaching situations involves a whole suite of routines grounded in a mind-set of clarity if not outright certainty. To that end, they are characterized by sharp-edged questions intended to narrow our focus: What is the expected return on this investment? What is the three-year plan for this venture? At what cost are they willing to settle? But asking these kinds of questions, very often legitimate in business-as-usual settings, may constrain management teams in atypical, complex situations, such as responding to a quickly changing market or revitalizing a privatized utility’s culture. Our tendency to place one perspective above all others—the proverbial “fact-based view” or “maximizing key stakeholders’ alignment”—can be dangerous. All too often, we operate with an excessively simple model in enormously messy circumstances. We fail to perceive how different pieces of reality interact and how to foster better outcomes.

Moving from “managing the probable” to “leading the possible” requires us to address challenges in a fundamentallychange 4 different way. Rather than simply disaggregating complexities into pieces we find more tractable, we should also broaden our range of interventions by breaking out of familiar patterns and using a whole new approach that allows us to expand our options, experiment in low-risk ways, and realize potentially outsized payoffs. But be warned: leading the possible involves coping with our own anxieties about an unknowable and uncontrollable world. A few simple habits of mind presented here can prod us toward thinking and acting differently. These should not be considered a checklist of to-dos; indeed, the very point is to move beyond a check-the-box mentality.

Unexpected possibilities
We relish stories of unexpected possibilities—little bets that created huge and unforeseen benefits. Twitter, for instance, was born when its creators noticed how alive and engaged they felt when communicating with each other in real time over SMS. The concept was brilliant, and the platform has reshaped the way the world communicates. But the initiative arose from brainstorming rather than an elaborate business plan. Tweeting caught on, in large part, because it grants its users freedom. In fact, Twitter cofounder Evan Williams has explained that, in general, his rule is to do less. We can’t foresee how uncertain conditions will unfold or how complex systems will evolve, but we can conduct thoughtful experiments to explore the possibilities.

That’s what happened at the birth of Emirates Airline. We’ve grown accustomed to thinking of Dubai as a major transit hub, but its development was hardly inevitable. During the mid-1980s, Gulf Air, the area’s regional flag carrier at the time, began to cut back its services to the city. Faced with the possibility of hundreds of stranded passengers in the short term, and the threat of long-term decline, the government tried something new. With a small infusion of cash (by airline standards), it leased two planes with crews from another airline and converted a couple of jets from the royal fleet for commercial use. In time, the fledgling Emirates Airline flew high. Traffic through Dubai International Airport seeded a local tourism industry and, on the cargo side, a logistics platform. This in turn attracted ever more traffic in what became a fantastically virtuous cycle. Not even the most optimistic of the airline’s founders could have reasonably imagined that Emirates Airline would be an industry giant—or that Dubai would become the world’s busiest international-passenger airport.

The leaders of these new ventures used unconventional approaches to try new, unexpected moves—with enormous payoffs. But it’s not just large innovations that make a difference. When people think in new ways, very small shifts can have unexpected and significant consequences.

Habits of mind
Uncertainty can’t be solved with pat procedures; it takes new habits of mind to lead the possible. In our experience, three such habits stretch the capabilities of leaders and help them not only to lead the possible but also to delight in it.

Ask different questions
The questions we ask emerge from our typical patterns of thought. We focus on narrowing down a problem so that we can find a solution. But we often fail to notice that in doing so we constrain the solution and make it ordinary. Asking different questions helps slow down the process. We begin to take in the full range of data available to us and in consequence have a significantly wider set of possible options. Examples of such questions include the following:

What do I expect not to find? How could I attune to the unexpected?
What might I be discounting or explaining away a little too quickly?
change 1What would happen if I shifted one of my core assumptions on an issue, just as an experiment?
The two of us have seen this approach applied successfully to real-life situations. For example, a government agency struggling with ever-shrinking resources and ever-increasing demands had asked two questions for years: “How will we get enough money to meet the demands?” and “Which services can we cut to stay within our budget?” The senior team, tired of running in circles searching for untapped financing streams or arguing over which core services to cut, intentionally explored a new idea: “How can we share our workload with others so that our current financing becomes sufficient without cutting back on services?” This new question significantly widened the available possibilities, and the organization set out to conduct a long series of small-scale experiments with businesses, other government departments, and community members to keep the same level of service for far less money. Asking a different question opened up dynamic possibilities.

Take multiple perspectives
No one can predict when or where the next vital idea will emerge, but we can support an expansive view of our present conditions. We can start by pushing back on our natural inclination to believe that the data we see are all the data we need and by distrusting our natural craving for alignment. Considering multiple perspectives opens up our field of vision. Diversity might create more disagreement and short-term conflict, but in an uncertain environment, a more expansive set of solutions is desirable.

We can try these approaches:
Take the perspective of someone who frustrates or irritates us. What might that person have to teach us?
Seek out the opinions of people beyond our comfort zone. The perspectives of, among others, younger people, more junior staff, and dissatisfied customers can be insightful and surprising.
Listen to what other people have to say. We should not try to convince them to change their conclusions; we should listen to learn. If we can understand their perspectives well enough, we might even find that our own conclusions change.
New perspectives often arise from unexpected sources. At a large consumer-goods organization that prided itself on its customer-centric approach, the leadership team rightly asserted that it understood the perspectives of its diverse customer base and key suppliers. The team was asked whether any group—anywhere at all—“just wasn’t getting it.” Rueful laughter followed; of course there was such a group: a set of consumers written off some time ago and now never considered. Taking a new approach, the leaders probed that group’s perspectives, not to win over these consumers or to sell them something but to learn from them. The leaders discovered the possibility of a whole new product line that slipped easily into the company’s supply chain but hadn’t been on the horizon previously. Taking multiple perspectives radically opened up a new set of possibilities.

See systems
This approach is about seeing patterns of behavior, and then developing and trying small “safe-to-fail” experiments to nudge the system in a more helpful direction. Leaders are best served when they get a wider, more systemic view of the present. Yet we’ve been trained to follow our natural inclination to examine the component parts. We assume a straightforward and linear connection between cause and effect. Finally, we look for root causes at the center of problems. In doing these things, we often fail to perceive the broader forces at work. The more we can hold on to the special features of systems, the more we can create experiments in unexpected places to open up new possibilities.

To best understand systems, it’s helpful to resist the urge to disaggregate problems and to solve them right away. Here are some alternatives:

We can hold opposing ideas without reconciling them. If it looks as though we’re confronting an either/or choice, we can reconsider our narrow framing and wonder what we’re missing.
We shouldn’t waste time arguing about the best solution; instead, we can pick several good but different solutions and experiment with them all in a small way.
We can give up the hunt for the root cause and instead look to the edges of an issue for our experiments. The system’s center is most resistant to change, but tinkering at the periphery can deliver outsized returns.
Elements in a system can be connected in ways that are not immediately apparent. For example, call-center employee turnover is notoriously high across industries—an expensive drain on this particular system. Many managers have tried to develop better hiring practices to eliminate some of the turnover before it begins; others beef up their HR departments to deal with the inevitable churn.

One executive, looking at the edges of the issue in his district, noticed that many skilled people outside the workforce care for their children or sick parents. He experimented with ways to bring these people into his call center in a flexible way: working from home, setting their own shift lengths and hours (a revolutionary idea in call centers), and managing their own performance targets. Over time, he nudged the model so that it became enormously successful. After 12 months of the new system, when the call-center staff had been ramped up to more than 200 employees, upward of 90 percent of them felt engaged with their work—a remarkable achievement in the traditionally transient and disengaged world of call centers—and turnover fell to under 10 percent a year. Looking at the whole system and experimenting with (and learning from) different approaches helped the executive to solve a number of related problems: turnover, customer satisfaction, local unemployment, and even rates of depression among people who provide care for family members.

Leadership implications
Of course, such shifts of mind have implications, and opening ourselves up to the delights of the possible comes at a cost. One casualty may be our cherished image of the traditional leader. The default model of a clear-mindedchange 2 person, certain of his or her outlook and ideas, is not consistent with the qualities that allow possibilities to flourish. In a complex world, we’re often better served by leaders with humility, a keen sense of their own limitations, an insatiable curiosity, and an orientation to learning and development.

Understanding this can have significant implications. For example, a group of private-equity leaders began to chart different leadership styles required at their various portfolio companies. Eventually, they realized that CEO searches were too often based on a one-size-fits-all model. Even as they fought their anxiety about breaking the standard mold, they came to understand that fluid circumstances require flexibility. Their awareness of the very different requirements of leadership in unpredictable settings helped them select—and develop—the leaders they really needed.

Transformative change is certain to happen, often in unforeseen ways and not necessarily led from the front. Unintended repercussions often stymie our best-laid plans. The world is neither simple nor static. It is patterned but not predictable. In the face of new challenges, we all default to how we think we should act and to what seems to have worked before. Managing the probable is reassuring but leaves us more open to being blindsided. Some problems do not lend themselves to rote methods, simple models, or sophisticated algorithms. When we treat them as different, complex, and uncertain, we can unlock solutions of immense creativity and power. And by exercising three simple habits of mind, we can begin to delight in the possible.

Source: McKinsey Quaterly, 25 March 2015
Link
Authors:Zafer Achi and Jennifer Garvey
About the authors: Zafer Achi is a director emeritus of McKinsey’s Dubai office; Jennifer Garvey Berger is a partner at Cultivating Leadership.

12 trender som förändrar ditt jobb (del 5-7)

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Digitalisering / Internet, Technology on March 25th, 2015 by admin

5. Tryck i kretsarna
Är det framtidens print eller en dyr gimmick?
Sidan och ändra färg på mobilen på bilden. Tekniken bestod av supertunna batterier och LED-skärmar skapade av företaget Digitas.

Förra våren byggde Nivea in solceller samt en usb-port i en annons för solkrämer i brasilianska tidningen Veja Rio. Annonsen lät solbadaren ladda sin mobil på stranden. CW Television Network hade en live Twitterfeed i Entertainment Weekly i oktober. QR-koden har fått sin uppföljare. När tekniken blir mindre och billigare kommer direktreklamen att kunna bli interaktiv på ett helt nytt sätt.

6. En rullande smartphone
Det handlar inte längre om att peta in modern teknik i våra bilar. Med inbyggd 4G och wifi – och mer samarbete mellan biltillverkare och it-utvecklare – kommer vi snart att köra runt i en stor Ipad på fyra hjul. Intel förutspår att bilen inom kort blir ett av de snabbast växande områdena för uppkopplade prylar och internettjänster.
car
7. När allt blir DM
Konsumenter är måttligt intresserade av varumärken, det är produkterna och tjänsterna de lägger pengarna på. I och med att tekniken runt Internet of Things utvecklats är det i dag fullt möjligt att göra alla produkter till individanpassade medieplattformar. Produkterna får en digital identitet och anpassar kommunikationen till ägarens beteende.
Ju mer interaktion mellan produkt och ägare, desto mer anpassad blir produkten.Det här betyder att konsumenter knyts närmare sina prylar samtidigt som de blir en guldgruva av data om konsumentbeteenden.

Företaget Everythings vision är hur användardata kokas ihop till en produktgraf. Vår sociala graf visar vem vi har kontakt med i sociala medier och vilka profiler de har i form av intressen och aktiviteter. Vår produktgraf kommer på motsvarande sätt visa vilka produkter vi köpt, hur vi använder dem och hur de relaterar till varandra.
När vi sedan kan jämföra våra produktgrafer med kontakterna i den sociala grafen och med tredjepartsaktörer – då kan det bli riktigt intressant.

Källa: dm.postnord.se, mars 2015
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12 trender som förändrar ditt jobb (del 3 och 4 av 12)

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Digitalisering / Internet, Strategy implementation / Strategiimplementering, Technology on March 23rd, 2015 by admin

3. Brevets återkomst
Direktreklam går mot en renässans. De digitala kanalerna blir allt brusigare och ett personligt brev når fram. Peter Field, kallad ”the Godfather of advertising effectiveness”, är marknadskonsulten som analyserat reklambranschen utifrån och in, nu senast med en rapport där han tittat på effekterna av att använda DR i multikanalskampanjer.
brev
På uppdrag av Royal Mail har han använt sig av IPA:s (Institute of Practitioners in Advertising) enorma databas med information om kreativa kampanjer. De analyserade 400 kampanjer genomförda de senaste 14 åren av stora brittiska varumärken – från banker som Barclays till flygbolag som Virgin. I genomsnitt ökade direktreklam en kampanjs försäljning med cirka 30 procent. De fick dessutom ut bättre resultat även på lång sikt, med bland annat tre gånger så hög ROI.

4. Utanför marknadsboxen
Fler och fler varumärken knyter till sig unga startupbolag för att vitalisera sin marknadsföring. Under senaste CES-mässan i Las Vegas, till exempel, anordnade Mindshare dagslånga event för både Nescafé och Kimberly-Clark där små tech start-ups fick pitcha på nya idéer – som uppkopplade kaffekoppar som visar kaffets temperatur och senaste rubrikerna från New York Times i en display.

Spritjätten Diageo har startat projektet Diageo Technology Ventures. Där rekryterades åtta startupbolag som ska jobba med att ta fram teknik och lösningar för att premiera ansvarsfullt drickande och minska stölder i spritbutiker.

Källa: dm.postnord.se, mars 2015
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Google-chefens 6 tips: Så klarar du alla jobbintervjuer

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 20th, 2015 by admin

Googles HR-chef Lazslo Bock har suttit på båda sidorna av bordet otaliga gånger. Han hävdar att med enkla medel går det att ta sig vinnande ur vilken intervju som helst.

Hemligheten: De flesta som anställer är inte särskilt bra på att intervjua, enligt Bock. Och det går att utnyttja.

Laszlo Bock är HR-chef på Google och ingår i nätjättens allra högsta ledning.

Här är hans sex tips som ska göra dig till en intervju-vinnare. Tipsen presenterar Bock i sin nya bok ”Work Rules!” och på LinkedIn.
JI
1. Förutsäg frågorna
Det går att förutsäga 90 procent av frågorna som kommer på intervjun, menar Lazslo Bock. Börja med ”Varför vill du ha det här jobbet?” och tänk ut ytterligare 20 frågor som du troligen kommer att få vid intervjutillfället. Skriv ner frågorna.

2. Planera dina attacker
Skriv ner svar på varje fråga. Då fastnar svaren i ditt huvud och du behöver inte tänka efter under intervjun.

3. Ha en reservplan
Skriv ner tre möjliga svar på varje fråga. Alternativen kommer att bli användbara om den första intervjuaren du träffar inte älskar dina svar.

4. Styrk dina påståenden
Besvara frågor med berättelser som visar att du kan klara av det som frågan handlar om. Du ska besvara alla frågor med fakta eller med en kort historia som bevisar det du säger.

5. Läs av rummet
Finns det något som du kan använda för att skapa bra kontakt? Det kan vara till exempel en bok eller en tavla.
Iaktta intervjuaren. Se om denne har ett öppet eller slutet kroppsspråk. Försök att se om intervjuaren gillar dina svar eller om du ska byta inriktning.

6. Träna in dina svar
Om du övar på intervjusvaren – säg dem högt och tydligt – så ökar dina chanser. Laszlo Bock berättar hur han själv under studietiden brukade sitta på sitt rum och tala ut i luften om varför han var en bra ledare.

Rumskamraten var minst sagt skeptisk. Men Bock fick sju jobberbjudanden. ”Hur var det möjligt? Genom övning”, skriver han.

Källa:
DI.se, 19 mars 2015
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