Your Mission #5: Manage Unit Performance

Managing the performance of your business unit, regardless of its size, is the most important contribution you can make to the ongoing success of the business as a whole. It is when managers avoid or abrogate this responsibility that serious problems begin to take root and grow. Poor performance is tolerated and the signal to good performers is that their efforts don’t count for much. Why manage performance? Why would you bother managing unit performance? There are a lot of good reasons for doing performance management well and these are a few of the most important: It makes positive contributions [...]

Your Mission #4: Understand Motivation – Part 2

Managing motivation: an opportunity and a challenge It is one thing to understand the nature and dynamics of motivation and quite another to apply that understanding as a manager. It is the difference between “knowing how” and “knowing that” as Gilbert Ryle expressed it and it is also the key message of the books “The knowing-doing gap” or “Execution: the discipline of getting things done”. Your primary responsibility as the manager is to create the environment within which people can motivate themselves. In this respect it is more akin to a facilitator than as a controller. You need to be [...]

Your Mission #1: Enable your team to create value

As a manager you are in the business of value creation Whether you have just taken over a new unit or you have been managing it for some time, the value created for your organisation has to be understood if you and your team are to be effective. Also, being able to communicate that value goes a long way to building business focus for the unit and establishing trust with your other stakeholders. As the manager, you should also have a strong understanding of how this value is created by your unit both individually and collectively.  While you may [...]

Your Mission, Should You Choose to Accept it…

Why is Management Still Relevant? In 2010 the Wall Street Journal published an article entitled “The End of Management” not as a question but as a statement. While providing a hat tip to the view of Peter Drucker that management was "the most important innovation of the 20th century” and the contributions of the management leaders of the late 19th and early 20th century, the article argues that what we have learned about management from the past may not be as relevant today. The article implies an important question: “Is this really the end of management as we know it?” Management, as a practical [...]

Readiness and Commitment to Change

The Eiger-Nordwand, or North Wall of the Eiger, in Switzerland, is said to be one of the most iconic climbs in the Alps. Its orientation, size, structure and history make it a magnet for all aspiring climbers and its history is littered with tragedy and triumph in adversity. According to those who have completed it, from the first ascent in 1938 by a team of Germans and Austrians over 3 days, to Ueli Steck's record of just under 3 hours in 2008, you need to be both mentally and physically prepared for a great challenge. In addition, they say, there [...]

Understanding Business Value is Everything

The retail industry is hurting in Australia. The internet has been blamed for a significant shift in buyer behaviour to online purchases, exploiting the $1000 threshold exemption for the Goods and Services Tax (GST). While this might be true, my experience as an online and in-store buyer suggests a number of other factors that might be at play. In looking to purchase a copy of the book, Game of Thrones, for my daughter, I went into a local retailer considered to be 'high-end' on a Saturday afternoon. Having found the book I went to three separate counters to conclude the [...]

By |September 18th, 2013|Business Results, Organisational Change, Strategy|0 Comments

Executive Sponsorship is a real job

Every business improvement initiative needs Executive Sponsorship because every improvement initiative involves change. To effect the change you will need resources, decisions, insights, influence and leadership, however, the big question is "What is the Executive Sponsor actually supposed to do?" Don't make the assumption that this additional role is hardwired into their DNA and don't assume they will ask if they are not sure. If you get an experienced sponsor with a track record of success then you are well on your way. If you get a sponsor who is too time poor, doesn't fully understand the real benefits of [...]

Five steps to improve the chance of change success

Change is still hard. The Harvard Business Review said so again in July and, while there is no reliable empirical basis upon which to justify the popular narrative that 70% of organisational change initiatives fail, the perception of change risk remains. In a world that is changing rapidly: where we are seeing whole industries being disrupted by convergence and technological innovation; where the emerging social adoption of technology across the internet touches almost every aspect of life; where fundamental structural adjustments are required for all major economies; we need to be able to change effectively and quickly. There is no safe [...]

By |September 4th, 2013|Change, Change Management, Organisational Change, Strategy|0 Comments