Plan to fail - don't fail to plan

Plan to fail – don’t fail to plan

1 month ago 0 0 21

“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything” (D Eisenhower). Planning is such a critical part of success – but plans are not.  How many times are plans made and simply forgotten?  How many times do people and organisations spend massive time and effort generating a ‘plan’ only for it to be completely out of date before the ink is dry? We are living through such a reality now – As we go through the uncertainties of COVID, organisations and individuals are describing how they have had to ‘pivot’ and ‘adapt’ – meaning that whatever that they had planned to do has been made obsolete.  If plans are worthless, why should we plan? Lesson 1: The future is uncertain “No plan survives the first engagement with the opposition main force” (Helmuth von Moltke, 1871). We cannot forecast the future with any certainty.  We cannot know – or control – what is

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Re-teaming: Rejuvenating team performance after COVID lockdowns

Re-teaming: Rejuvenating team performance after COVID lockdowns

1 month ago 0 0 25

COVID has had many impacts on employees and their effectiveness. The whole process of getting people to work from home has changed the way that many people work and interact. One of the hidden but powerful impacts of the shifting in work scenarios is on teams. Team structure and function has been overturned and as organisations aim to efficiently move to new models of working, there is real benefit in considering the way their teams are functioning. It may be time to ‘re-team’ working colleagues to create high performance. What makes a team? Teams are just more that a group of colleagues forced to work together. A team creates value by what happens between its members and what is collectively achieved. High performing teams develop cultures of excellence, openness and trust. They draw out the best of each member and combine this to generate far more value for the organisation

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Decision making: the games we play

Decision making: the games we play

1 month ago 0 0 16

This post is part of the series on decision making.  Building on the research around the factors of decision making open to influence, we explore 3 common decision scenarios (games as defined by Nash) and how you can improve your personal decision making. Scenarios for decisions: Consider the following situations: You win at the casino, and believe you have discovered a ‘method’ for winning every time you play. A relative passes away, and there is disagreement over the division of the estate, and the relationships are permanently damaged. You have a rival who would rather harm your chances more than get any benefit, as long as they do better than you they are happy to wear some pain, too. You are in a negotiation and you the other side is asking for and expecting impossible things from you, ensuring the negotiation goes nowhere even though the path seems obvious to

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Is your success good enough to last?

4 months ago 0 0 139

Summary: Being successful does not guarantee future success. Human biases impact how we research business success Success can breed ‘expectation’, rather than encouraging staying attuned to your customer Change happens, how are you going to adapt to stay relevant, valuable and fit to serve your customers at their new normal? Research in the 20th century focused on what makes a successful company ‘great’?  Business luminaries like Tom Peters and Jim Collins became ‘gurus’ of the business world by applying research to this exact question. The belief was that the things that make a great company can be distilled from examples of companies that have been successful. This led to a range of ‘business principles’ (like the hedgehog concept from Jim Collins) that became the fads of the late twentieth century management ethos. Years after the initial publications of these works, there was almost a sense of ‘glee’ from parts of

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Frictionless business.

2 years ago 0 0 569

Friction is a force that acts against forward movement. It creates noise, it creates heat, it transforms the kinetic energy of forward motion into something else. Friction is something that takes energy and effort to overcome, and when an object is at rest, can add to the inertia to make it harder to get things moving. It seems like this is just physics, but it is also the underlying problem of so many businesses. Without even realising it they are adding friction to their business processes and slowing down performance. Friction that is converting positive energy into unwanted byproducts, and requiring massive amounts of additional effort to be put in by customers and staff to overcome the inertia that this friction generates. Simply put, a customer experiences ‘friction’ every time the process of doing business with you is slowed or impeded by your rules, habits or inefficiencies. Or a staff

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Understanding the ‘Trumpnado’ – the social psychology of Donald Trump

5 years ago 1 0 1496

After it started as seemingly a bit of a joke, Donald Trump has catapulted into front-runner status for the Republican nomination for President in the United States. His extreme actions and language are completely at odds with the traditional political playbook. However, it seems to be working. Whilst it may seem completely illogical, there are compelling social psychology reasons why his approach is working – and there is a dangerous historical precedent. Where did the supporters come from? Donald Trump has drawn a large and passionate supporter base. Whilst Ted Cruz and Mark Rubio have fashioned messages to speak to a conservative mindset, Trump has spoken across classic voter categories. His supporter base was probably not even aware that they were Trump supporters, but his campaign has activated them. First to get on board were more extreme elements, but over time his activation has reached deeper and deeper into the

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5 steps to achieving your goals in 2016

5 years ago 0 0 2181

So, it is that time of year to plan for 2016 – perhaps to set some goals for the year ahead to be the foundation of your success. There are many reasons people set goals. We are encouraged to set goals to work out what we want to achieve, what we want to prioritise, and to build action plans that we can follow. We also create goals because we have to or are expected to. We may be asked by the board to set some specific targets and goals for the business, or we may even have a coach that pushes us to set ‘big hairy audacious goals’. Goals are important. They provide targets, benchmarks and measurable steps to achieve something of value. They allow review and learning, coordination and ongoing development. Regardless why your goals are set, there is every likelihood that they are simply set to fail. Just

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social media marketing

Human marketing in a digital world.

6 years ago 0 0 1176

Your boss bursts into the meeting “I want us on twitter! We need to update Facebook! Show me the digital strategy!” Unfortunately, over the last 10 years, this has been all too common. The cry has gone out for organisations to ‘get digital’ for fear of missing out. There are great reasons to include digital and social media approaches into your marketing, but unless it is done thoughtfully and strategically, they often end up expensive and damaging to the organisation and its brand.  In many instances, these channels are used a megaphones to yell messages at people with no interest in what is being offered. The shift to digital There has been a massive shift to digital technology. We often hear of the ‘digital natives’ – the generations who have grown up intimately connected to digital devices, who have deep confidence or trust in these channels, and who are extremely

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Disruptive innovation- Have you got it wrong?

6 years ago 0 0 1801

The idea of disruptive change is very ‘hot’ in business and innovation circles at the moment. There are conferences dedicated to it, books written about it, people who have ‘disruption’ on their business cards or Linkedin profiles. However, my guess is that 90% of people in innovation and business are missing the real point about disruption. In this article I take a look at the idea of disruption, and what businesses can really do to understand it and apply it to their business situation. The source of ‘disruptive innovation’ In 1997, Clayton Christensen published a book called ‘The Innovator’s Dilemma’, in which he coined the term ‘disruptive innovation’ to describe what he saw in some case studies in the computer industry. The term has gained prominence since then, but I believe that it has now ‘jumped the shark’ – and it is time to really understand ‘disruption’ for what it

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