Your Strategy Needs a Strategy

Posted in Aktuellt, Board work / Styrelsearbete, Leadership / Ledarskap, Strategy implementation / Strategiimplementering on March 29th, 2016 by admin

The oil industry holds relatively few surprises for strategists. Things change, of course, sometimes dramatically, but in relatively predictable ways. Planners know, for instance, that global supply will rise and fall as geopolitical forces play out and new resources are discovered and exploited. They know that demand will rise and fall with incomes, GDPs, weather conditions, and the like. Because these factors are outside companies’ and their competitors’ control and barriers to entry are so high, no one is really in a position to change the game much. A company carefully marshals its unique capabilities and resources to stake out and defend its competitive position in this fairly stable firmament.
The internet software industry would be a nightmare for an oil industry strategist. Innovations and new companies pop up frequently, seemingly out of nowhere, and the pace at which companies can build—or lose—volume and market share is head spinning. A major player like Microsoft or Google or Facebook can, without much warning, introduce some new platform or standard that fundamentally alters the basis of competition. In this environment, competitive advantage comes from reading and responding to signals faster than your rivals do, adapting quickly to change, or capitalizing on technological leadership to influence how demand and competition evolve.
Clearly, the kinds of strategies that would work in the oil industry have practically no hope of working in the far less predictable and far less settled arena of internet software. And the skill sets that oil and software strategists need are worlds apart as well, because they operate on different time scales, use different tools, and have very different relationships with the people on the front lines who implement their plans. Companies operating in such dissimilar competitive environments should be planning, developing, and deploying their strategies in markedly different ways. But all too often, our research shows, they are not.
strat 1That is not for want of trying. Responses from a recent BCG survey of 120 companies around the world in 10 major industry sectors show that executives are well aware of the need to match their strategy-making processes to the specific demands of their competitive environments. Still, the survey found, in practice many rely instead on approaches that are better suited to predictable, stable environments, even when their own environments are known to be highly volatile or mutable.
What’s stopping these executives from making strategy in a way that fits their situation? We believe they lack a systematic way to go about it—a strategy for making strategy. Here we present a simple framework that divides strategy planning into four styles according to how predictable your environment is and how much power you have to change it. Using this framework, corporate leaders can match their strategic style to the particular conditions of their industry, business function, or geographic market.
How you set your strategy constrains the kind of strategy you develop. With a clear understanding of the strategic styles available and the conditions under which each is appropriate, more companies can do what we have found that the most successful are already doing—deploying their unique capabilities and resources to better capture the opportunities available to them.
When the Cold Winds Blow

Finding the Right Strategic Style
Strategy usually begins with an assessment of your industry. Your choice of strategic style should begin there as well. Although many industry factors will play into the strategy you actually formulate, you can narrow down your options by considering just two critical factors: predictability (How far into the future and how accurately can you confidently forecast demand, corporate performance, competitive dynamics, and market expectations?) and malleability (To what extent can you or your competitors influence those factors?).
Put these two variables into a matrix, and four broad strategic styles—which we label classical, adaptive, shaping, and visionary—emerge. (See the exhibit “The Right Strategic Style for Your Environment.”) Each style is associated with distinct planning practices and is best suited to one environment. Too often strategists conflate predictability and malleability—thinking that any environment that can be shaped is unpredictable—and thus divide the world of strategic possibilities into only two parts (predictable and immutable or unpredictable and mutable), whereas they ought to consider all four. So it did not surprise us to find that companies that match their strategic style to their environment perform significantly better than those that don’t. In our analysis, the three-year total shareholder returns of companies in our survey that use the right style were 4% to 8% higher, on average, than the returns of those that do not.

Let’s look at each style in turn.
Classical.
When you operate in an industry whose environment is predictable but hard for your company to change, a classical strategic style has the best chance of success. This is the style familiar to most managers and business school graduates—five forces, blue ocean, and growth-share matrix analyses are all manifestations of it. A company sets a goal, targeting the most favorable market position it can attain by capitalizing on its particular capabilities and resources, and then tries to build and fortify that position through orderly, successive rounds of planning, using quantitative predictive methods that allow it to project well into the future. Once such plans are set, they tend to stay in place for several years. Classical strategic planning can work well as a stand-alone function because it requires special analytic and quantitative skills, and things move slowly enough to allow for information to pass between departments.
Oil company strategists, like those in many other mature industries, effectively employ the classical style. At a major oil company such as ExxonMobil or Shell, for instance, highly trained analysts in the corporate strategic-planning office spend their days developing detailed perspectives on the long-term economic factors relating to demand and the technological factors relating to supply. These analyses allow them to devise upstream oil-extraction plans that may stretch 10 years into the future and downstream production-capacity plans up to five years out. It could hardly be otherwise, given the time needed to find and exploit new sources of oil, to build production facilities, and to keep them running at optimum capacity. These plans, in turn, inform multiyear financial forecasts, which determine annual targets that are focused on honing the efficiencies required to maintain and bolster the company’s market position and performance. Only in the face of something extraordinary—an extended Gulf war; a series of major oil refinery shutdowns—would plans be seriously revisited more frequently than once a year.
Adaptive. The classical approach works for oil companies because their strategists operate in an environment in which the most attractive positions and the most rewarded capabilities today will, in all likelihood, remain the same tomorrow. But that has never been true for some industries, and, as has been noted before in these pages (“Adaptability: The New Competitive Advantage,” by Martin Reeves and Mike Deimler, HBR July–August 2011), it’s becoming less and less true where global competition, technological innovation, social feedback loops, and economic uncertainty combine to make the environment radically and persistently unpredictable. In such an environment, a carefully crafted classical strategy may become obsolete within months or even weeks.
Companies in this situation need a more adaptive approach, whereby they can constantly refine goals and tactics and shift, acquire, or divest resources smoothly and promptly. In such a fast-moving, reactive environment, when predictions are likely to be wrong and long-term plans are essentially useless, the goal cannot be to optimize efficiency; rather, it must be to engineer flexibility. Accordingly, planning cycles may shrink to less than a year or even become continual. Plans take the form not of carefully specified blueprints but of rough hypotheses based on the best available data. In testing them out, strategy must be tightly linked with or embedded in operations, to best capture change signals and minimize information loss and time lags.
Specialty fashion retailing is a good example of this. Tastes change quickly. Brands become hot (or not) overnight. No amount of data or planning will grant fashion executives the luxury of knowing far in advance what to make. So their best bet is to set up their organizations to continually produce, roll out, and test a variety of products as quickly as they can, constantly adapting production in the light of new learning.
The Spanish retailer Zara uses the adaptive approach. Zara does not rely heavily on a formal planning process; rather, its strategic style is baked into its flexible supply chain. It maintains strong ties with its 1,400 external suppliers, which work closely with its designers and marketers. As a result, Zara can design, manufacture, and ship a garment to its stores in as little as two to three weeks, rather than the industry average of four to six months. This allows the company to experiment with a wide variety of looks and make small bets with small batches of potentially popular styles. If they prove a hit, Zara can ramp up production quickly. If they don’t, not much is lost in markdowns. (On average, Zara marks down only 15% of its inventory, whereas the figure for competitors can be as high as 50%.) So it need not predict or make bets on which fashions will capture its customers’ imaginations and wallets from month to month. Instead it can respond quickly to information from its retail stores, constantly experiment with various off erings, and smoothly adjust to events as they play out.
Zara’s strategic style requires relationships among its planners, designers, manufacturers, and distributors that are entirely different from what a company like ExxonMobil needs. Nevertheless, Exxon’s strategists and Zara’s designers have one critical thing in common: They take their competitive environment as a given and aim to carve out the best place they can within it.
Shaping.
Some environments, as internet software vendors well know, can’t be taken as given. For instance, in new or young high-growth industries where barriers to entry are low, innovation rates are high, demand is very hard to predict, and the relative positions of competitors are in flux, a company can often radically shift the course of industry development through some innovative move. A mature industry that’s similarly fragmented and not dominated by a few powerful incumbents, or is stagnant and ripe for disruption, is also likely to be similarly malleable.
In such an environment, a company employing a classical or even an adaptive strategy to find the best possible market position runs the risk of selling itself short, being overrun by events,strat 3 and missing opportunities to control its own fate. It would do better to employ a strategy in which the goal is to shape the unpredictable environment to its own advantage before someone else does—so that it benefits no matter how things play out.
Like an adaptive strategy, a shaping strategy embraces short or continual planning cycles. Flexibility is paramount, little reliance is placed on elaborate prediction mechanisms, and the strategy is most commonly implemented as a portfolio of experiments. But unlike adapters, shapers focus beyond the boundaries of their own company, often by rallying a formidable ecosystem of customers, suppliers, and/or complementors to their cause by defining attractive new markets, standards, technology platforms, and business practices. They propagate these through marketing, lobbying, and savvy partnerships. In the early stages of the digital revolution, internet software companies frequently used shaping strategies to create new communities, standards, and platforms that became the foundations for new markets and businesses.
That’s essentially how Facebook overtook the incumbent MySpace in just a few years. One of Facebook’s savviest strategic moves was to open its social-networking platform to outside developers in 2007, thus attracting all manner of applications to its site. Facebook couldn’t hope to predict how big or successful any one of them would become. But it didn’t need to. By 2008 it had attracted 33,000 applications; by 2010 that number had risen to more than 550,000. So as the industry developed and more than two-thirds of the successful social-networking apps turned out to be games, it was not surprising that the most popular ones—created by Zynga, Playdom, and Playfish—were operating from, and enriching, Facebook’s site. What’s more, even if the social-networking landscape shifts dramatically as time goes on, chances are the most popular applications will still be on Facebook. That’s because by creating a flexible and popular platform, the company actively shaped the business environment to its own advantage rather than merely staking out a position in an existing market or reacting to changes, however quickly, after they’d occurred.

Visionary.
Sometimes, not only does a company have the power to shape the future, but it’s possible to know that future and to predict the path to realizing it. Those times call for bold strategies—the kind entrepreneurs use to create entirely new markets (as Edison did for electricity and Martine Rothblatt did for XM satellite radio), or corporate leaders use to revitalize a company with a wholly new vision—as Ratan Tata is trying to do with the ultra-affordable Nano automobile. These are the big bets, the build-it-and- they-will-come strategies.
Like a shaping strategist, the visionary considers the environment not as a given but as something that can be molded to advantage. Even so, the visionary style has more in common with a classical than with an adaptive approach. Because the goal is clear, strategists can take deliberate steps to reach it without having to keep many options open. It’s more important for them to take the time and care they need to marshal resources, plan thoroughly, and implement correctly so that the vision doesn’t fall victim to poor execution. Visionary strategists must have the courage to stay the course and the will to commit the necessary resources.
Back in 1994, for example, it became clear to UPS that the rise of internet commerce was going to be a bonanza for delivery companies, because the one thing online retailers would always need was a way to get their offerings out of cyberspace and onto their customers’ doorsteps. This future may have been just as clear to the much younger and smaller FedEx, but UPS had the means—and the will—to make the necessary investments. That year it set up a cross-functional committee drawn from IT, sales, marketing, and finance to map out its path to becoming what the company later called “the enablers of global e-commerce.” The committee identified the ambitious initiatives that UPS would need to realize this vision, which involved investing some $1 billion a year to integrate its core package-tracking operations with those of web providers and make acquisitions to expand its global delivery capacity. By 2000 UPS’s multibillion-dollar bet had paid off: The company had snapped up a whopping 60% of the e-commerce delivery market.

Avoiding the Traps
In our survey, fully three out of four executives understood that they needed to employ different strategic styles in different circumstances. Yet judging by the practices they actually adopted, we estimate that the same percentage were using only the two strategic styles—classic and visionary—suited to predictable environments. (See “Which Strategic Style Is Used the Most?” below.) That means only one in four was prepared in practice to adapt to unforeseeable events or to seize an opportunity to shape an industry to his or her company’s advantage. Given our analysis of how unpredictable their business environments actually are, this number is far too low. Understanding how different the various approaches are and in which environment each best applies can go a long way toward correcting mismatches between strategic style and business environment. But as strategists think through the implications of the framework, they need to avoid three traps we have frequently observed.

Misplaced confidence.
You can’t choose the right strategic style unless you accurately judge how predictable and malleable your environment is. But when we compared executives’ perceptions with objective measures of their actual environments, we saw a strong tendency to overestimate both factors. Nearly half the executives believed they could control uncertainty in the business environment through their own actions. More than 80% said that achieving goals depended on their own actions more than on things they could not control.
Unexamined habits. Many executives recognized the importance of building the adaptive capabilities required to address unpredictable environments, but fewer than one in five felt sufficiently competent in them. In part that’s because many executives learned only the classical style, through experience or at business school. Accordingly, we weren’t surprised to find that nearly 80% said that in practice they begin their strategic planning by articulating a goal and then analyzing how best to get there. What’s more, some 70% said that in practice they value accuracy over speed of decisions, even when they are well aware that their environment is fast-moving and unpredictable. As a result, a lot of time is being wasted making untenable predictions when a faster, more iterative, and more experimental approach would be more effective. Executives are also closely attuned to quarterly and annual financial reporting, which heavily influences their strategic-planning cycles. Nearly 90% said they develop strategic plans on an annual basis, regardless of the actual pace of change in their business environments—or even what they perceive it to be.

Culture mismatches.
Although many executives recognize the importance of adaptive capabilities, it can be highly countercultural to implement them. Classical strategies aimed at achieving economies of scale and scope often create company cultures that prize efficiency and the elimination of variation. These can of course undermine the opportunity to experiment and learn, which is essential for an adaptive strategy. And failure is a natural outcome of experimentation, so adaptive and shaping strategies fare poorly in cultures that punish it.
Avoiding some of these traps can be straightforward once the differing requirements of the four strategic styles are understood. Simply being aware that adaptive planning horizons don’t necessarily correlate well with the rhythms of financial markets, for instance, might go a long way toward eliminating ingrained planning habits. Similarly, understanding that the point of shaping and visionary strategies is to change the game rather than to optimize your position in the market may be all that’s needed to avoid starting with the wrong approach.
Being more thoughtful about metrics is also helpful. Although companies put a great deal of energy into making predictions year after year, it’s surprising how rarely they check to see if the predictions they made in the prior year actually panned out. We suggest regularly reviewing the accuracy of your forecasts and also objectively gauging predictability by tracking how often and to what extent companies in your industry change relative position in terms of revenue, profitability, and other performance measures. To get a better sense of the extent to which industry players can change their environment, we recommend measuring industry youthfulness, concentration, growth rate, innovation rate, and rate of technology change—all of which increase malleability.

Operating in Many Modes
Matching your company’s strategic style to the predictability and malleability of your industry will align overall strategy with the broad economic conditions in which the company operates. But various company units may well operate in differing subsidiary or geographic markets that are more or less predictable and malleable than the industry at large. Strategists in these units and markets can use the same process to select the most effective style for their particular circumstances, asking themselves the same initial questions: How predictable is the environment in strat 2which our unit operates? How much power do we have to change that environment? The answers may vary widely. We estimate, for example, that the Chinese business environment overall has been almost twice as malleable and unpredictable as that in the United States, making shaping strategies often more appropriate in China.
Similarly, the functions within your company are likely to operate in environments that call for differing approaches to departmental planning. It’s easy to imagine, for instance, that within the auto industry a classical style would work well for optimizing production but would be inappropriate for the digital marketing department, which probably has a far greater power to shape its environment (after all, that’s what advertising aims to do) and would hardly benefit from mapping out its campaigns years in advance.
If units or functions within your company would benefit from operating in a strategic style other than the one best suited to your industry as a whole, it follows that you will very likely need to manage more than one strategic style at a time. Executives in our survey are well aware of this: In fact, fully 90% aspired to improve their ability to manage multiple styles simultaneously. The simplest but also the least flexible way to do this is to structure and run funcfunctions, regions, or business units that require differing strategic styles separately. Allowing teams within units to select their own styles gives you more flexibility in diverse or fast-changing environments but is generally more challenging to realize.

Finally, a company moving into a different stage of its life cycle may well require a shift in strategic style. Environments for start-ups tend to be malleable, calling for visionary or shaping strategies. In a company’s growth and maturity phases, when the environment is less malleable, adaptive or classical styles are often best. For companies in a declining phase, the environment becomes more malleable again, generating opportunities for disruption and rejuvenation through either a shaping or a visionary strategy.
Once you have correctly analyzed your environment, not only for the business as a whole but for each of your functions, divisions, and geographic markets, and you have identified which strategic styles should be used, corrected for your own biases, and taken steps to prime your company’s culture so that the appropriate styles can successfully be applied, you will need to monitor your environment and be prepared to adjust as conditions change over time. Clearly that’s no easy task. But we believe that companies that continually match their strategic styles to their situation will enjoy a tremendous advantage over those that don’t.

Source: www.bcgperspectives.com
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Authors: Martin Reeves, Claire Love and Philipp Tillmanns

Sex ledarskapstips från Klarnas VD

Posted in Aktuellt, Executive Coaching, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 23rd, 2016 by admin

Klarnas vd Sebastian Siemiatkowski har gjort “alla fel man kan göra som chef“, berättar han i Di-podden Förnuft & Känsla. Här är hans sex tips för att undvika att göra samma misstag som han själv gjort.

1. Våga anställa seniora personer
”Utmaningen i den här typen av bolag är att om du rekryterar för juniort kommer du lätt hamna i en situation där folk inte vågar säga emot. Därför måste man våga ha seniora personer omkring sig, och kanske människor som är betydligt äldre och mer erfarna, för att få en bra dynamik.”

2. Dela lika mellan medgrundare
”För mig var det viktigt att både Niklas Adalberth och Victor Jacobsson initialt hade samma lön och samma ägarandel som jag själv för att det inte skulle bli några diskussioner om engagemangsnivå och varför någon jobbar mer eller mindre än någon annan. Jag ville att alla skulle ha det lika.”
klarna
3. Minska arbetsbelastningen – anställ personer du har förtroende för
”Över tid har jag samlat på mig ett gäng människor som också har extremt höga krav och ambitioner. Det gör det lättare för mig att delegera till dem, eftersom jag har förtroende för hur de kommer att hantera sina områden, och vet att jag inte kommer att behöva titta på detaljerna.”

4. Bygg organisationen som ett fotbollslag
”Att folk är engagerade i fotboll handlar om att reglerna är tydliga, man vet precis vad som krävs för att uppnå resultat och att framgång betyder att man gör mål, att fusk inte är tillåtet, att det är en lagsport och att alla har tydliga roller. Allt det är tecken på en bra organisation, och det kan man dra lärdomar från. ”

5. När drevet går: var transparent
”I stället för att välja att inte kommentera, inte svara och inte ta kritiken på allvar, när det började skrivas om oss, valde vi att göra tvärtom. Det kändes naturligt att vara transparent, och det visade sig vara mycket uppskattat.

6. För att vara en effektiv beslutsfattare – var tydlig med vad mötets syfte är
”Möten är till för att fatta beslut. Du kan ha brainstorming-sessioner när du vill få nya idéer, men när vi jobbar i projekt, mot ett mål, då är mötet till för att vi ska komma framåt. Det är mitt fokus.”

Källa: DI.se, 23 mars 2016
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Hur arbetar rekryterare med sociala medier?

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt, Executive Coaching on March 23rd, 2016 by admin

Linkedin men även Facebook och Twitter är guldgruvor för rekryterare när de söker efter intressanta kandidater. Men vad tittar de efter och vad går bort? Här berättar tre rekryterare hur de jobbar med sociala medier (Sara Molin, rekryteringschef Jurek, Zarina Virsholm, partner & rekryteringskonsult Sharp Recruitment, och Mats Holmberg, partner Boardtalk).

Hur använder ni sociala medier när ni söker kandidater?
Sara Molin, rekryteringschef Jurek: “Vi använder oss av sociala medier främst utifrån två aspekter när vi söker kandidater; antingen genom att annonsera våra tjänster eller genom att aktivt söka upp och kontakta kandidater med profiler som matchar de tjänster vi arbetar med.”

Zarina Virsholm, partner & rekryteringskonsult Sharp Recruitment: “I alla våra rekryteringsuppdrag arbetar vi parallellt med annons- och sökförfarande. Det gör vi dels för att inte förspilla tid på att invänta att rätt kandidat dyker upp samt säkerställa att vi kan presentera rätt kandidater inom två veckor. För att kunna uppfylla detta använder vi oss av sociala medier både för annonsering av olika tjänster och sökning av kandidater. De sociala mediekanalerna kan variera beroende på de uppsatta kriterierna för den specifika tjänsten.”

Mats Holmberg, partner Boardtalk: “Vi arbetar aktivt med sociala medier. På vår egen ”företagssida på Linkedin lägger vi ut alla annonser vi arbetar med. Vi försöker få så många ”tummen upp” som möjligt från vårt nätverk så vi vet att våra annonser sprids vitt och brett. Linkedin ger oss också en chans att komma i kontakt med kandidater som inte aktivt söker jobb. Det är ett ovärdeligt verktyg för oss! Vi har även ett aktivt twitter konto där vi annonserar alla våra annonser. På Search/headhunt-sidan så har vi flera researchers och konsulter som mycket aktivt arbetar med att leta efter rätt kandidater.”
rekryter

Vad tittar ni särskilt efter?
Sara Molin: “Vi tittar särskilt efter kandidater med erfarenhet, utbildning och kompetens som matchar de tjänster vi arbetar med. Precis som när vi tittar på en cv eller ansökan finns det också olika sätt att sticka ut via t.ex. en Linkedin-profil, exempelvis genom att ha en Sammanfattning som fångar intresse.”

Zarina Virsholm: “Det beror på vad vi letar efter. Inom juridik och compliance vill vi snabbt se utbildning och titel i kombination med antal arbetade år samt var kandidaterna har arbetat. Finns dessutom en kortare presentation, gärna i punktform av målsättning, värdegrund med mera, är det ännu bättre. När vi däremot söker finansiella rådgivare eller säljare är det något mer komplicerat eftersom titlarna varierar mycket från företag till företag. Det blir därför viktigare med en bra arbetsbeskrivning. Sammanfattningsvis kan man säga att en Linkedin-presentation helst ska se ut som ett cv med kort sammanfattning av arbetsuppgifter och presentation. Framför allt ska den vara säljande!”

Mats Holmberg: “Det är viktigt att profilerna på Linkedin innehåller ungefär lika mycket som ett cv. Vi vill ju egentligen inte bara veta vad kandidaten gör idag utan även förstå hur personen vill utveckla sin karriär. Alltså letar vi både efter viss detaljkunskap men vi vill också få en helhetsbild av kandidaten. Ibland är det också mycket intressant att se om man har några gemensamma kontakter vilket kan ge bra referenser senare i uppdraget.”

Vad går bort?
Sara Molin: “Det beror helt på vad vi är ute efter just då. Men eftersom rekryterare och arbetsgivare använder sociala media mer och mer, framför allt Linkedin, är det ett tips att överhuvudtaget finnas med och ha en uppdaterad profil. Jag tycker också att det är viktigt att tänka på att Linkedin är en karriärsajt och att fokus ska ligga på detta i till exempel inlägg, uppdateringar med mera. Ett annat tips är att tänka på vad du använder för bild. En professionell, neutral bild är att rekommendera medan du bör undvika till exempel en festbild.”

Zarina Virsholm: “Det man inte vill se är alldeles för långa beskrivningar med för mycket information.”

Mats Holmberg: “Stavfel, blandning av svenska och engelska, ett foto som inte passar med karriären. På Linkedin har man en professionell profil och därmed undanbedes till exempel semesterfoton.”

Finns det något som många missar i presentationen av sig själva?
Sara Molin: “När det gäller Linkedin är det många som enbart har med titel och arbetsgivare på sin profil. Om man vill öka sin sökbarhet och styrkan i profilen är det ett tips att precis som i en cv ha med beskrivning av arbetsuppgifter, ansvarsområden, uppnådda resultat med mera. Lägg även till ”Kompetenser” för att öka sökbarheten ytterligare. På så sätt är det enklare att få en bra bild av vem du är och vad du kan.”

Zarina Virsholm: “En Linkedin-sida kan användas i säljande syfte, vare sig man aktivt eller passivt söker nya utmaningar, möjligheter eller affärskontakter. Använd ord som beskriver just dig och ta gärna inspiration av rekryteringsannonser som lockar dig, till exempel genom att väva in ord som affärsdriven, analytisk, strukturerad, prestigelös, energisk med mera. Och, det viktigaste av allt – glöm inte ta med aktuella kontaktuppgifter med mailadresser som används och gärna telefonnummer. Varför är man annars med på Linkedin?”

Mats Holmberg: “Jag tycker att presentationen av en själv ska vara som ett ”öppet cv. Det vill säga, om det är något du lär dig, utbildar dig till eller projekt som slutförs så skriv in detta direkt i profilen. Då vet du att det sista är med. Dessutom ger det en uppdatering till ditt nätverk varje gång. Annars tycker jag generellt att man ska ha med ett foto som passar så att bilden av profilen blir mer levande. En vanlig miss är annars att man skriver för lite om sin nuvarande eller tidigare tjänst. Enbart titel räcker inte för att man ska förstå vad personer arbetar med.”

Ska man ta kontakt om man ser att en rekryterare varit inne på ens Linkedin-sida?
Sara Molin: “Inte nödvändigtvis. Vi rekryterare är inne och surfar en hel del på Linkedin, och det är inte alltid vi har en specifik anledning. Om du är på jakt efter nytt jobb kan det dock vara en god idé att ta kontakt med ett antal rekryterare och lägga till dem i ditt nätverk. Ett tips är då att skriva i inbjudan att du är på jakt efter nya utmaningar och att det är av den anledningen du vill skapa kontakt.”

Zarina Virsholm: “Självklart! Tyvärr känner sig nog många obekväma med att ta kontakt. Men till oss är alla alltid välkomna oberoende vem man är och om man söker aktivt efter ett nytt arbete eller bara är nyfiken på varför rekryteraren har varit inne på sidan. Vi tar gärna en kaffe för att lära känna nya potentiella kandidater eller bara för att hålla oss à jour med vad som händer i branschen.”

Mats Holmberg: “Nja, tveksamt. Vi tittar på hundratals profiler varje vecka så det kanske är lite overkill. Dock kan det vara bra att besöka rekryteringsbolagets hemsida. Då kanske du hittar mer information om den tjänst som gjorde att konsulten tittade på just din profil.”

Källa: Realtid.se, 23 mars 2016
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Seeing the world as customers do

Posted in Aktuellt, Försäljning / Sales, Strategy implementation / Strategiimplementering on March 22nd, 2016 by admin

To maximize customer satisfaction, companies have long emphasized touchpoints. But doing so can divert attention from the more important issue: the customer’s end-to-end journey.

When most companies focus on customer experience they think about touchpoints—the individual transactions through which customers interact with parts of the business and its offerings. This is logical. It reflects organization and accountability, and is relatively easy to build into operations. Companies try to ensure that customers will be happy with the interaction when they connect with their product, customer service, sales staff, or marketing materials. But this siloed focus on individual touchpoints misses the bigger—and more important—picture: the customer’s end-to-end experience. Only by looking at the customer’s experience through his or her own eyes—along the entire journey taken—can you really begin to understand how to meaningfully improve performance.

Customer journeys include many things that happen before, during, and after the experience of a product or service. Journeys can be long, stretching across multiple channels and touchpoints, and often lasting days or weeks. Bringing a new customer on board is a classic example. Another is resolving a technical issue, upgrading a product, or helping a customer to move a service to a new home. In our research, we’ve discovered that organizations that fail to appreciate the context of these situations and manage the cross-functional, end-to-end experiences that shape the customer’s view of the business can prompt a downpour of negative consequences, from customer defection and dramatically higher call volumes to lost sales and lower employee morale. In contrast, those that provide the customer with the best experience from start to finish along the journey can expect to enhance customer satisfaction, improve sales and retention, reduce end-to-end service cost, and strengthen employee satisfaction.

This is especially true in today’s multitouchpoint, multichannel, always-on, hypercompetitive consumer markets. The explosion of potential customer interaction points—across new channels, devices, applications, and more—makes consistency of service and experience across channels nigh impossible—unless you are managing the journey, and not simply individual touchpoints. Indeed, research we conducted in 2015 involving seven EU telecom markets found thatcustomer A when consumers embarked on journeys that involved multiple channels their experience was materially worse than during single-channel experiences, whether those experiences were digital or not.

The trouble with touchpoints
Consider the dilemma that executives faced at one media company. Customers were leaving at an alarming rate, few new ones were available for acquiring in its market, and even the company’s best customers were getting more expensive to retain. In economic terms, a retained customer delivered significantly greater profitability than a newly acquired customer over two years. Churn, due to pricing, technology, and programming options, was an increasingly familiar problem in this hypercompetitive market. So was retention. The common methods for keeping customers were also well known but expensive—tactics like upgrade offers and discounted rate plans, or “save desks” to intercept defectors.

So the executives looked to another lever—customer experience—to see if improvements there could halt the exodus. What they found surprised them. While the company’s overall customer-satisfaction metrics were strong, focus groups revealed that a large number of customers left because of poor service and shoddy treatment over time. “How can this be?” one executive wondered. “We’ve measured customer satisfaction for years, and our call centers, field services, and website experience each score consistently over 90 percent. Our service is great!”

As company leaders probed further, however, they discovered a more complex problem. Most customers weren’t fed up with any one phone call, field visit, or other individual service interaction—in fact, most customers didn’t much care about those singular touchpoint events. What was driving them out the door was something the company wasn’t examining or managing—the customers’ cumulative experience across multiple touchpoints, multiple channels, and over time.

Take new-customer onboarding, for example, a journey that spanned about three months and involved an average of nine phone calls, a home visit from a technician, and numerous web and mail interactions. At each touchpoint, the interaction had at least a 90 percent chance of going well. But average customer satisfaction fell almost 40 percent over the course of the entire journey. The touchpoints weren’t broken—but the onboarding process as a whole was.

Many of customers’ numerous calls during the process represented attempts to clarify product information, fix problems with an order, or understand a confusing bill. Most of these service encounters were positive in a narrow sense—employees answered the questions or solved the issues as they arose—but the underlying problems were avoidable, the root causes left unaddressed, and the cumulative effect on customer experience was decidedly negative. The company’s touchpoint-oriented, metric-driven way of thinking about customer experience had a large blind spot.

Solving the problem would be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, but the company needed a whole new way of thinking about and managing its service operations to identify and reimagine the customer-experience journeys that mattered most.

More touchpoints, more complexity
The problem encountered by the media company is far more common than most organizations care to admit and is often difficult to spot. At the heart of the challenge is the siloed nature of service delivery and the insular cultures, behaviors, processes, and policies that flourish inside the functional groups that companies rely on to design and deliver their services. In many cases, these groups are also the keepers of the touchpoints that shape and measure how the company’s activities meet the customer’s—say, an in-store conversation with a sales rep, a visit to the company’s website, or a query to the company’s call center. Whether because of poorly aligned incentives, management inattention, or simply human nature, the functional groups that manage these touchpoints are constantly at risk of losing sight of what the customer sees (and wants)—even as the groups work hard to optimize their own contributions to the customer experience.
The media company’s sales personnel, for example, were measured and rewarded for closing new sales—not for helping customers navigate a complex menu of technology and programming options to find the lowest-price offer that met their needs. Yet frustration about complex pricing for high-end equipment, confusion about promotions, and surprise over program lineups were all frequent causes of dissatisfaction later in the process, as well as frequent sources of queries to the company’s call centers. Executives knew that each of these discrete items was a challenge—but only when they took a broader end-to-end view did it become apparent that even though each individual link in the service-delivery chain appeared healthy, the cumulative effect was quite the opposite.

The answer isn’t to replace touchpoint management and thinking. Indeed, the expertise, efficiencies, and insights that functional groups bring to bear are important, and touchpoints will continue to represent invaluable sources of insights—particularly in the fast-changing digital arena. Instead, companies need to recognize and address the fact that—at least, in most cases—they are simply not wired to naturally think about the journeys their customers take. They are wired to maximize productivity and scale economies through functional units. They are wired for transactions, not journeys.

So how should companies tackle this issue? In our experience, six actions are critical to managing customer-experience journeys (articles elsewhere in this volume explore several of these topics in depth):
•Step back and identify the nature of the journeys customers take—from the customer’s point of view.
•Understand how customers navigate across the touchpoints as they move through the journey.
•Anticipate the customer’s needs, expectations, and desires during each part of the journey.
•Build an understanding of what is working and what is not.
•Set priorities for the most important gaps and opportunities to improve the journey.
•Come to grips with fixing root-cause issues and redesigning the journeys for a better end-to-end experience.

The amount of time it can take to identify journeys, understand performance, and redesign the experience can vary widely from company to company. For companies seeking only to fix a few glaring problems in specific journeys, top-down problem solving can be enough. But those that want to transform the overall customer experience may need a bottom-up effort to create a detailed road map for each journey, one that describes the process from start to finish and takes into account the business impact of enhancing the journey and sequencing the initiatives to do so. For many companies, combining operational, marketing and customer, and competitive-research data to understand journeys is a first-time undertaking, and it can be a long process—sometimes lasting several months. But the reward is well worth it; creating a fact base allows management to clearly see the customer’s experience and decide which aspects to prioritize.

Journeys explained
To better see how customer journeys work, let’s look at a measurable and routine service event—say, a product query—from the point of view of both the company and the customer. The company may receive millions of phone calls with questions about its product, and it is imperative to handle each of these calls well. But when customers are asked to recall their side of the experience months later, it is highly unlikely that they would describe such calls simply as a “product question.” That’s because the call has a context, and understanding it is the key to understanding customer journeys.

The customer might have been trying to ensure uninterrupted service after moving, for example, or was confused about renewal options at the end of a contract, or was trying to fix a nagging technical problem. A company that effectively manages its customer journeys would still do the best job it could with the individual transaction—but its agents would also understand the context for the call, address the root cause for the customer’s query, and create the feedback loops to help the company continuously improve the wide range of upstream and downstream interactions that surround (and sometimes cause) the call. That is a broader lens than most call centers apply.
Most executives we talk to readily grasp the journey concept but wonder whether perfecting journeys pays off in hard-dollar outcomes. Our research, in the form of annual cross-industry customer-experience surveys that span pay TV, retail banking, auto insurance, and other sectors, shows that it does. Companies that excel in delivering journeys tend to win in the market. In both the insurance and TV industries, for example, better performance on journeys correlates strongly with faster revenue growth; in fact, in measurements of customer satisfaction with the firms’ most important journeys, a one-point improvement on a ten-point scale corresponds to at least a three-percentage-point increase in the revenue-growth rate.

Moreover, the companies that perform best on journeys have a more distinct competitive advantage than those that excel at touchpoints; in one of the industries we surveyed, the gap on customer satisfaction between the top- and bottom-quartile companies on journey performance was 50 percent wider than the gap between the top- and bottom-quartile companies on touchpoint performance. Put simply, most companies perform fairly well on touchpoints, but distinctive performance on journeys can set a company apart.

Why are journeys so much more effective at driving results? For one thing, our research suggests that journeys are more predictive of desired outcomes. In most industries, the three journeys that matter most to customers account for more than 25 percent of total customer satisfaction. Indeed, across industries, performance on journeys is substantially more strongly correlated with customer satisfaction than performance on touchpoints—and performance on journeys is significantly more strongly correlated with business outcomes such as revenue, churn, and repeat purchase. In other words, delivering a distinctive journey experience makes it more likely that customers repeat a purchase, spend more, recommend to their friends, and stay with your company.

Journeys versus touchpoints: Some practical examples
Consider the case of the local operating entity of a global insurance player. Market leadership in one of its largest lines of business, car insurance, was under siege by both established players and new entrants. Executives knew that they would have to innovate in order to differentiate their offering. They also knew that for a long time the fragmented nature of their customer experience had been a problem: many of their customers bought their product and managed their claims via a broker. When a car needed repair after an incident, a local mechanic typically managed the process, with little involvement from the car insurer. With so many individual touchpoints outside the company’s control, the insurer struggled to provide a consistently high-quality and repeatable experience.

Research identified consistent and clear communications as one of the most important elements of customer experience. Improving the experience started with offering insurance policies that were easy to read, understand, and compare with those of competitors. But even more important to customers was securing answers to questions regarding the status of their car while under repair. What was being replaced or repaired? When would they get the car back?

The effort made it apparent that there was potential to resolve a critical frustration for customers during a very important part of their overall customer journey with the insurer. It also revealed the opportunity to build a deeper engagement and relationship. So the company set out to provide an end-to-end communications “glue” to what had been a multitouchpoint, multiparty customer journey.

Executives rapidly created a prototype using a sample of 20 current customer cases. Each day, the company would track where the case was and provide a simple update to the customer via email or text. The company set up “personal contacts” for each customer who would send the emails, serve as a single source of contact, and phone the customer directly if there was a material update to be announced, such as a delay in finishing the work. Overall, every effort was made to personalize communication during an important phase in the customer’s journey. By the end of the pilot, the company had learned a number of lessons related to the appropriate frequency of contact, the importance of using the customer’s preferred channels, and timing communications. The company also learned how to scale the service without adding substantial costs, largely by using underutilized call-center resources at off-peak hours.

The impact was profound. Net promoter scores for the customer journey climbed by 15 percentage points, and by 50 points for difficult cases, such as when repairs were first attempted but eventually the car had to be declared a total write-off. Delighted customers sent thank-you notes to the company, and brokers and mechanics reported significant improvements in their dealings with customers, who were now much better informed.

customer BOr consider the European energy retailer that identified the “home moving” journey as a particular point of dissatisfaction among its customers, as well as a significant source of churn. The company mobilized a cross-functional team (service, sales, marketing, and IT) to understand what was happening—from the customer’s viewpoint—along the journey to prompt these high levels of customer dissatisfaction. What the team found was a basic journey that was performing poorly across the various functions and departments that supported it.

The journey’s design suffered from several features that imposed unnecessary inconvenience and anxiety on customers when moving. For example, customers had to contact the company no earlier than ten days before their move date to provide all of the necessary details—otherwise the IT systems would not record the information. An organized customer, one who called perhaps a month before the move date to set everything up, would find that his or her move details were never recorded. Customers also had only one method—voice calling—to contact the company.

Once the customer had notified the company of moving plans, he or she would receive several different forms of communication. Upon examination, the team found that some of the communications were redundant, while others contradicted other accurate pieces of communications. All this generated additional anxiety and confusion.

Poor communication, in fact, was the single largest reason that customers called into the call centers, and it was another source of dissatisfaction. Customer-service agents had no method of tracking where the customer was on his or her moving journey. More often than not, this meant that agents had to hand off the inquiry to a back-office team for further investigation and problem resolution. The back-office team, inundated with these types of inquiries, suffered delays in getting back to the customer with a resolution, naturally producing additional calls to the call center—and so on.

The good news was that, for the first time, the company understood the benefit of taking an end-to-end view of the customer journey and the importance of understanding how interdependent individual touchpoints were along the journey.

Several improvements were designed and implemented rapidly to address the key problem areas. The moving journey was redesigned into a signature customer journey for this energy-retail company: customers now have the flexibility to provide the company with their move information at a time that suits them. They also have the option to use a phone, the web, or a smartphone app to contact the company; all essential communications are now delivered consistently in a single “home movers” pack. Finally, the company now incorporates into the home-movers pack discount vouchers for do-it-yourself stores, tradespeople, and restaurants in the area—creating a welcoming cluster of local businesses (the businesses also happen to be customers of the energy retailer’s small and midsize business unit, thus creating a positive customer experience across all customer segments). The result? A 50 percent increase in customer satisfaction from the starting position, and a 15 percent reduction in the company’s customer-service cost. Employee satisfaction increased by 20 percent and churn related to this journey was cut by more than half.

In most cases, companies are simply not naturally wired to think about the journeys their customers take. Thinking about customer journeys—instead of traditional touchpoints—can require an operational and cultural shift that engages the organization across functions and from top to bottom. For the companies that master it, the reward is higher customer and employee satisfaction, revenue and cost improvements, and an enduring competitive advantage.

Source: McKinsey.com, March 2016
By: Nicolas Maechler, Kevin Neher, and Robert Park
About the authors: Nicolas Maechler is a principal in McKinsey’s Paris office, Kevin Neher is a principal in the Denver office, and Robert Park is an associate principal in the London office.

The authors wish to thank Conor Jones and Laird Rawsthorne for their contributions to this article.

Link

Tips till säljchefen

Posted in Aktuellt, Försäljning / Sales, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 17th, 2016 by admin

En framgångsrik säljchef vet att det lönar sig att lägga tid på sina anställda. Med bra förutsättningar presterar de anställda bättre och resultatet blir därefter.

1. Strategi
Den viktigaste uppgiften för en säljchef är att ge sina säljare goda förutsättningar och verktyg för att sälja. Med tydliga mål, en genomtänkt strategi och god planering kan de anställda lyckas i säljprocessen – om de fått rätt förutsättningar.

2. Bevarande
För att få en bra hävstångseffekt gäller det att hitta de rätta personerna. En duktig säljchef handplockar sina säljare och skapar en miljö som gör att de stannar kvar i företaget.sales

3. Coaching
Studier visar att ju mer säljare coachas desto bättre blir resultaten. Bra och frekvent coaching är alltså a och o för att nå bra resultat.

4. Rutiner
Improvisation kan fungera vid enstaka tillfällen, men struktur och rutiner bygger framgång över tid. En framgångsrik säljchef ser till att de anställda vet vad som förväntas av dem.

5. Maximering
Den säljchef som ser till att säljarna får så mycket tid som möjligt med kunder har goda förutsättningar att lyckas väl. Ett gott råd är att dra ner på administrationen för att maximera de anställdas tid hos kunder.

Hur bra är ett säljledarskap? Vi kan hjälpa er att finna ut! Läs mer här: www.3s.se

Källa: Saljledarskap.se, 17 mars 2016
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Ledarskapstips!

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 10th, 2016 by admin

Helena Stjernholm, 45, är sedan den 1 september vd för mångmiljardbolaget Industrivärden. I premiäravsnittet av Di:s podcast Förnuft & Känsla berättar hon om sin syn på ledarskap. Här är sju handfasta tips:

7. Var ärlig med vad du kan och inte kan
“Jag kom in från sidan i en organisation (Industrivärden, reds. anm.) där jag inte kände de andra och inte kunde deras jobb.”
“Jag tycker det är viktigt att man är ärlig. Jag har varit väldigt öppen med att säga ‘de här delarna kan jag jättebra’. Om andra bitar har jag fått säga ‘det här är inte min hemmaplan, det här måste ni förklara för mig hur man gör’.”

6. Var engagerad och sänd rätt signaler
“Om chefen har ett ge engagemang så tror jag att det smittar av sig på de andra som man jobbar med. Ska man göra en Hsternuppgift tillsammans och det är stress och mycket att göra eller en tuff uppgift. Om en chef signalerar att det är jobbigt eller att det inte kommer att gå, det tror inte jag gör något bra för arbetsmoralen i gruppen.”

“Att vara en engagerad person som chef och att försöka locka ut det engagemanget ur de andra personerna istället för att peka med hela handen och säga exakt vad andra ska göra.”

5. Bestäm målet – ge dina medarbetare frihet på vägen dit
“Om man tillsammans har bestämt målet och är överens om det. Då tror jag att de flesta individer vill bestämma själva hur de ska göra det.”
“De allra flesta tror jag mår väldigt bra om de har ett mål, en deadline och vet vilka resurser som finns, men sedan får lura ut själva hur man ska komma dit. Och självklart kan de komma tillbaka och säga ‘jag vet inte hur vi ska lösa det här’ och då har jag gärna en diskussion om det. Jag tror på den här modellen, att alla har ett eget ansvar.”

4. Lyssna innan du fattar ditt beslut
“Jag tycker om att vända och vrida på beslut, och att få höra vad folk tycker. Det tror jag är en viktig del av ledarskap. Om jag talar om Dag 1 vad jag tycker, då är jag inte säker på att jag får höra sanningen från de andra. Jag vill gärna att de ska säga vad de tycker först. Jag tar ganska god tid på mig för stora beslut. Mindre beslut är bara att fatta och gå vidare.”

3. Stå fast vid beslut
“Jag tycker att det är väldigt viktigt att när man har fattat ett beslut, då har man fattat det. Och då ska alla jobba mot det. Sedan får man inte vara sämre om det visar sig vara helt fel. Men jag tror att man måste kunna säga ‘nu är beslutet fattat, nu gör vi så här’.”

2. Välj personer efter specifika situationer
Helena Stjernholm tar SCA som exempel: “Vi har tänkt över vad bolaget är bra på, var det ska vara om ett antal år och vilken kompetens som behövs. Utifrån det letar vi efter personerna.

Man kan träffa fantastiska personer som är jätteduktiga, men som faktiskt inte har den kompetensprofil som behövs. Jag tror att man ska bygga ett team för varje specifik situation.”

1. Avsätt tid för att tänka långsiktigt
“För att inte bli fast i de kortsiktiga puckarna sätter jag av tid i min kalender när jag ska hinna tänka lite mer långsiktigt, för det är det svåra att hinna med annars. Jag lägger in ett antal timmar i min vecka då jag inte har möten eller kortsiktiga saker att hantera. Jag brukar kalla det för ‘desktime’. Och på söndagseftermiddagar hemma tänker jag väldigt bra.”

Källa: DI.se, 10 mars 2016
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Sweden no. 1 !

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 9th, 2016 by admin

52785e75-4423-4d6d-9b2a-22fcd2fbd48f-originalInc. magazine recently published a list of the 5000 fastest growing companies in Europe.
Sweden tops the list with 554 companies..!

En väg till bättre kunskapsdelning och smidigare arbetsprocesser?

Posted in Aktuellt, Digitalisering / Internet on March 9th, 2016 by admin

Telenor först i Sverige att lansera Facebook at Work

Telenor Sverige blir det första företaget i Sverige att introducera Facebook at Work för sina anställda.
FB work
Målet är att höja det sociala nätverkandet mellan de anställda eftersom det förväntas leda till en bättre kunskapsdelning samt göra de anställdas arbetsprocesser smidigare, framgår det i ett pressmeddelande.

Telenor Sverige har redan nu 2.000 Telenormedarbetare som valt att ansluta sig till Facebook at Work. Åtkomst till tjänsten är möjlig genom alla enheter, oavsett var man personen befinner sig.

Källa:vafinans.se, mars 2016
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Är det OK att inte svara på jobbmail på ledig tid?

Posted in Aktuellt, Allmänt on March 6th, 2016 by admin

Allt fler känner sig allt mer stressade av “behovet” att vara tillgängliga. Inte bara på arbetstid, utan nu även på vardagkvällar och helger.

Vad får det för effekt på vår möjlighet att vila, vara kreativa och producera maximalt, både kort- och långsiktigt? Och är OK av arbetsgivaren, och kollegor, att kräva att man är tillgänglig 24/7?

Läs mer om denna problematik här:
Emails
A number of companies have imposed blackout times on work emails. A large European car business, for example, programs the smartphones of its nonmanagement employees to switch off work emails automatically between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. In many companies, particularly knowledge-based ones, this would be disruptive and counterproductive—but provided there are overrides, such a policy can send a clear signal of management’s intent.
mstress 2
Work-time limits
Some companies known for a “long-hours culture” have been implementing rules to curb working very late at night. One major financial-services business, for example, specifically required its summer interns to leave the office before midnight each day to ensure that they were not subjected to “all-nighters.” This organization’s full-time employees have been told to stay out of the office from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 a.m. Sunday.

Sleep-awareness programs can produce better leaders

Svårt stänga av jobbmobilen

Smarta telefoner gör det svårare att separera arbetstid och ledighet. Men när DN kollar med tre stora svenska arbetsgivare är det ingen som har regler som begränsar vilka tider de anställda ska svara på jobbmejl.

De smarta mobiltelefonernas intåg har förändrat vår vardag på många sätt. Över 50 procent av tjänstemännen säger att de brukar vara tillgängliga via mobil eller e-post utöver ordinarie arbetstid – dagligen, visar en rapport från Unionen.
– Det är ytterst få som säger att arbetsgivaren kräver att man ska vara tillgänglig på kväller och helger, men många säger att det är otydligt vad som förväntas. En vanlig anledning till att man svarar på mejl är att man vill underlätta för sina kollegor eller kunder, säger Daniel Gullstrand, utredare hos Unionen.

Det finns tydliga faror med att ständigt vara uppkopplad: Desto mer tillgängliga de anställda är, desto svårare har de att släppa jobbet.
– Det är inget som är farligt att göra då och då, men kan på sikt leda till att det blir svårare att återhämta sig. Vissa kan få sömnsvårigheter, till exempel.

När DN kontaktar tre stora arbetsgivare – H&M, Ericsson och Skatteverket – har ingen regler som begränsar de anställdas tillgänglighet.
”Det finns ingen policy när det kommer till tillgänglighet via mail under exempelvis kvällstid för tjänstemän som jobbar för H & M Sverige. Men det är viktigt för H & M som arbetsgivare att mstress 1uppmuntra till en sund balans mellan arbetsliv och privatliv”, svarar H & M Sverige.

”Vi har inga särskilda policies för detta. Många medarbetare hos oss har ”fri tid”, vilket betyder att man själv styr över arbetstiden. Vår senaste medarbetarundersökning visar att medarbetarna tycker att de generellt har en bra balans mellan arbete och fritid”, säger Ericsson.

”Vi har inga styrdokument för detta. Samtidigt anser vi att arbetstider är en arbetsmiljöfråga, och har inskrivet i vår medarbetarpolicy att vi ska värna om fritiden. Vi jobbar aktivt för att begränsa övertiden hos vår anställda”, svarar Skatteverket.

Hos Unionen är man inte förvånad över att företagen som DN varit i kontakt med saknar tillgänglighetspolicies. Samtidigt, påpekar man, är det viktigt att se företagen som en del av lösningen – inte bara problemet.
– Det finns till exempel tekniska lösningar som gör att arbetsmejl skickas först klockan åtta morgonen efter. Vi tror också att det skulle vara bra om tillgängligheten blir en del av det systematiska arbetsmiljöarbetet. Då blir det lättare att se effekten av åtgärder som införs.

Källa: DN.se, 6 mars 2016
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Sleep-awareness programs can produce better leaders

Posted in Aktuellt, Leadership / Ledarskap on March 4th, 2016 by admin

Some senior business people skillfully and consciously manage their sleep, emerging refreshed and alert after crossing multiple time zones or working late into the night. Yet we all know caffeinated and careworn executives who, after hours of wakeful slumber, struggle to recall simple facts, seem disengaged and uninspired, lack patience with others, and can’t think through problems or reach clear-cut decisions.

Sleep (mis)management, at one level, is obviously an individual issue, part of a larger energy-management challenge that also includes other forms of mental relaxation, such as mindfulness and meditation, as well as nutrition and physical activity. But in an increasingly hyperconnected world, in which many companies now expect their employees to be on call and to answer emails 24/7, this is also an important organizational topic that requires specific and urgent attention.

Research has shown that sleep-deprived brains lose the ability to make accurate judgments. That, in turn, can lead to irrational and unjustified claims such as “I do not need sleep” or “I’m sleep 2doing fine with a couple of hours of sleep.” Our own recent survey of executives demonstrates how many of them remain in denial on this point. Yet our respondents contradicted themselves by suggesting that companies should do more to help teach leaders the importance of sleep.

On this point, they are right. Many companies do not do enough to promote healthy sleep, which can have serious consequences. As we will demonstrate, sleep deficiencies impair the performance of corporate executives, notably by undermining important forms of leadership behavior, and can thereby hurt financial performance. This article will demonstrate and explore the link between sleep and leadership behavior before discussing solutions that can improve both individual well-being and organizational efficiency and effectiveness.

The link to organizational leadership
The last part of our brain to evolve was the neocortex, responsible for functions such as sensory perception, motor commands, and language. The frontal part of the neocortex, the prefrontal cortex, directs what psychologists call executive functioning, including all the higher-order cognitive processes, such as problem solving, reasoning, organizing, inhibition, planning, and executing plans. These help us get things done.

It’s long been known that all leadership behavior relies on at least one (and often more than one) of these executive functions and therefore, in particular, on the prefrontal cortex. Neuroscientists know that although other brain areas can cope relatively well with too little sleep, the prefrontal cortex cannot.

Although basic visual and motor skills deteriorate when people are deprived of sleep, they do not do so nearly to the same extent as higher-order mental skills.

Previous McKinsey research has highlighted a strong correlation between leadership performance and organizational health, itself a strong predictor of a healthy bottom line. In a separate study of 81 organizations and 189,000 people around the world, we have found that four types of leadership behavior are most commonly associated with high-quality executive teams: the ability to operate with a strong orientation to results, to solve problems effectively, to seek out different perspectives, and to support others. What’s striking, in all four cases, is the proven link between sleep and effective leadership (exhibit).

Sleep

Operating with a strong orientation to results
To do this well, it’s important to keep your eye on the ball and avoid distractions, while at the same time seeing the bigger picture—that is, whether your company is heading in the right direction. Scientists have found that sleep deprivation impairs this ability to focus attention selectively. Research shows that after roughly 17 to 19 hours of wakefulness (let’s say at 11 PM or 1 AM for someone who got up at 6 AM), individual performance on a range of tasks is equivalent to that of a person with a blood-alcohol level of 0.05 percent. That’s the legal drinking limit in many countries. After roughly 20 hours of wakefulness (2 AM), this same person’s performance equals that of someone with a blood-alcohol level of 0.1 percent, which meets the legal definition of drunkenness in the United States.

Solving problems effectively
Sleep is beneficial for a host of cognitive functions—insight, pattern recognition, and the ability to come up with innovative and creative ideas—that help us solve problems effectively. One study has shown that a good night’s sleep leads to new insights: participants who enjoyed one were twice as likely as those who didn’t to discover a hidden shortcut in a task. Likewise, an afternoon nap has been found to aid creative problem solving: subjects who took a nap after struggling on a video-game problem were almost twice as likely to solve it as subjects who had remained awake. Other research has established that creative thinking is especially likely to take place during dream sleep, enhancing the integration of unassociated information and promoting creative solutions.

Seeking different perspectives
A wealth of scientific studies have also highlighted the impact of sleep on all three stages of the learning process—before learning, to encode new information; after learning, in the consolidation stage, when the brain forms new connections; and before remembering, to retrieve information from memory. An important consideration for leaders seeking different perspectives is the ability to weigh the relative significance of different inputs accurately, to avoid tunnel vision, and to reduce cognitive bias. Sleep has been shown to improve decision making for tasks that mimic real life, such as complex cognitive–emotional ones which integrate emotional responses by involving financial rewards and punishments. Science supports the commonly heard advice that rather than making an important decision or sending a sensitive email late at night, you should sleep on it.5

Supporting others
To help other people, you must first understand them—for example, by interpreting the emotions on their faces or their tone of voice. In a sleep-deprived state, your brain is more likely to misinterpret these cues and to overreact to emotional events, and you tend to express your feelings in a more negative manner and tone of voice. Recent studies have shown that people who have not had enough sleep are less likely to fully trust someone else, and another experiment has demonstrated that employees feel less engaged with their work when their leaders have had a bad night of sleep.

What organizations can do
How can organizations improve the quality and efficiency of sleep to ensure that their leaders attain—or recapture—the highest performance levels? At McKinsey, we’ve been working on this issue with our own colleagues, as well as with business leaders, over the past year. We offer this menu of possible solutions for companies to consider. As we are the first to admit, our own people do not always practice what we preach. In any case, certain types of organizations cannot implement these ideas without an accompanying change in the underlying culture.

Training programs
Interestingly, 70 percent of the leaders in our survey said that sleep management should be taught in organizations, just as time management and communication skills are now. Ideally, such programs should be part of a unified learning program that includes a number of components, such as online assessments, in-person workshops, and a performance-support app offering reminders, short inspirational videos or animations, additional assessments, and opportunities to connect with online communities. (For a selection of healthy sleep habits, see sidebar “Sleep tips.”)

Here’s a selection of sleep tips we share with McKinsey consultants.

Create the right sleep environment
1. Remove the smartphone from your bedroom: your brain associates it with stress and excitement (even when it’s off), which can hinder deep and restorative sleep. The screen’s blue light tricks the brain into thinking it’s still daytime, not bedtime. Research has shown that late-night smartphone use significantly reduces performance at work the next day through its pernicious effects on sleep.
2. Don’t use the bedroom for work.
3. Keep the bedroom cool, allowing your core body temperature to drop, which helps you fall and stay asleep.
4. On business trips, take items that remind your brain of home, such as your own pillow, pajamas, shower gel, and toothpaste.

Wind down
Quality of sleep is compromised when you don’t sufficiently relax and reduce stress in the evening. It’s critical to wind down at night and “unplug,” perhaps with meditation.

Stop snoozing
Don’t set multiple alarms in the morning. The waking-brain state is very different from the sleeping-brain state, and the brain prefers to wake up naturally. Don’t force it to make this transition multiple times; instead, get a longer bout of consolidated sleep without interruptions.

Be efficient with your time
1. Go to bed early—a recipe for deeper and more restorative sleep—rather than sleeping in late.
2. Try napping in the early afternoon—either a short nap of less than 30 minutes or a recovery nap of around 90 minutes for a full sleep cycle.

Companies should embed sleep training in a broader approach to well-being that takes in other topics, notably exercise, nutrition, mindfulness, and energy management. Yet it can be daunting for leaders to go about changing a lot of behavior at once, so it’s important to allow time for new habits to stick.

Company policies
Before introducing new policies, businesses should start a conversation among their leaders to determine which ideas will best suit the organization, particularly bearing in mind the fact that working cultures differ.

Travel. Companies should encourage flexibility—for example, by allowing employees, if possible, to take an earlier plane (rather than an overnight “red eye” flight) to get a good night’s sleep before an important meeting.

Team working. Companies must increasingly be responsive 24/7, but this doesn’t mean that specific people should bear the brunt of the burden single-handedly. IT help desks in many global organizations have shown the way—shifting location every eight hours. Likewise, other groups should work to alleviate the pressure by creating “tag teams” of employees who seamlessly hand over the reins to other teams, in different time zones, at the end of their shifts. Phone calls and home-based videoconferences do run the risk of extending the workday but, used judiciously, can cut unnecessary travel-to-work time. Leaders should set an example by being mindful of local times (and the time preferences of the people involved) when scheduling global calls. Simply knowing the participants’ preferences can help reinforce a sleep-friendly culture.

sleep 3Emails. A number of companies have imposed blackout times on work emails. A large European car business, for example, programs the smartphones of its nonmanagement employees to switch off work emails automatically between 6 p.m. and 7 a.m. In many companies, particularly knowledge-based ones, this would be disruptive and counterproductive—but provided there are overrides, such a policy can send a clear signal of management’s intent.

Work-time limits. Some companies known for a “long-hours culture” have been implementing rules to curb working very late at night. One major financial-services business, for example, specifically required its summer interns to leave the office before midnight each day to ensure that they were not subjected to “all-nighters.” This organization’s full-time employees have been told to stay out of the office from 9 p.m. Friday to 9 a.m. Sunday.

Mandatory work-free vacations. A US software company gives employees a $7,500 bonus if they follow two rules: (1) They have to actually go on vacation or they don’t get the money. (2) They must disconnect, and hence cannot work, on vacation.

‘Predictable time off’ (PTO). Leslie Perlow, a professor at Harvard Business School, introduced a good way to catch up on lost sleep: a planned night off, with no email, no work, and no smartphone. A large global consulting firm found that productivity went up when it tested this approach, which is now the basis for a company-wide program.

Napping rooms or pods. The image of a sleeping manager is easy to mischaracterize. Research has shown that a short nap of 10 to 30 minutes improves alertness and performance for up to two and a half hours. Over half of the leaders in our survey wanted their businesses to imitate the large technology companies and telcos that have already successfully adopted sleep pods and nap rooms.

Smart technology. Companies should consider supplying (or at least informing their employees about) some of the gadgets and tools designed to improve sleep management. Examples include the f.lux application, which limits blue light on computers and iPhones, thereby boosting reduced levels of the sleep hormone melatonin. Other apps on the market provide individualized jetlag-minimizing schedules.

Organizations of the future
Much attention has been focused on the importance of sleep for top-performing athletes, musicians, and even politicians. Expert violinists, for example, have cited practice and sleep as two of the most important drivers of performance. (One study shows that the top performers consistently take a nap and get over half an hour more sleep than their less well-regarded peers do.) Former US president Bill Clinton once admitted, “Every important mistake I’ve made in my life I made when I was tired.” Business people have often lagged behind others in both their willingness to acknowledge the issue and their readiness to act on it.

A recent Harvard Medical School study surveyed senior leaders and found that 96 percent reported experiencing at least some degree of burnout. One-third described their condition as extreme. It’s time for organizations to find ways of countering the employee churn, lost productivity, and increased healthcare costs resulting from insufficient sleep. If it is true that some millennials care less about high salaries and more about work–life integration, the next generation of employees will demand solutions even more strongly.

Sourece: McKInsey.com, March 2016
Authors: Nick van Dam and Els van der Helm
About the authors: Nick van Dam is McKinsey’s global chief learning officer and a principal in its Amsterdam office, where Els van der Helm is a specialist.
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