It encourages show and read rather than capture imagination and explain/inspire. "Power corrupts, PowerPoint corrupts absolutely", Edward Tufte. It's ubiquitous. Yet the finest presentations are special. It's part of an evil master plan. Bullets are cheap and easy to throw together. But harder for an audience to assimilate and remember.
Creating an environment where trust throughout an organization exists requires attention and conscious effort. An organization takes its cues and is a reflection of the leader. As the leader, we should take a look at ourselves and make sure that our actions and character are consistent with the trust factors discussed.
Don Dea's insight:
A team is not a group of people who work together. A team is a group of people who trust each other Simon Sinek
Multiple tech-supported offerings. In addition to the free, open courses, the authors highlight free, or low-cost, resources that learners can use to customize their learning. A few of the suite of products available as part of what OC@KU calls their “learning concierge service,” includes:
Open Portfolio: A tool that aims to allow learners to track and manage their open courses. Built with an integrated API for Open Education Consortium courses, the Open Portfolio is a free tool for users to develop informal learning plans around personal or professional interests which can be shared or kept private. “Equally important, as part of this technological and web-driven disruption, learners’ capacity to develop and store evidence of learning in electronic portfolios—carefully organized around career, academic, or personal interests—has also been transformed,” said Smith in a recent EDUCAUSE article. CLA+ : A low-cost skills assessment tool. For a minimal fee, say the report’s authors, learners can take an assessment that will evaluate “real-life, cross-cutting intellectual skills.” The skills that CLA+ test for include analysis and problem solving, scientific and quantitative reasoning, critical reading and evaluation, and critiquing an argument—skills which employers have stated matter more than a particular major or GPA, noted the authors.
Consider the following words in your everyday speech and how their associated meanings influence you, the listener and the conversation for better or worse:
1. “I guess” You guess? You guess? What does that even mean? Well, I’ll tell you what it means to guess. Hearing “I guess” connotes weakness, a lack of clarity and disempowerment, and is right up there at the top of the “do not use” list next to “maybe.” Avoid saying "I guess" if you want to sound more assertive.
2. “Can’t” This is a typical replacement for “won’t,” however each connotes entirely different degrees of power and proactivity.
3. “Supposed to" When you hear somebody say that he or she was supposed to do [insert chore here] but didn't, what he or she really meant was that they had the best of intentions but some mysterious, outside influence compelled them to act otherwise. First, see “can’t” above. Then, replace “supposed to” with “I will” or “I intend,” as these convey a firm, positive perspective.
Don Dea's insight:
Generally speaking, inserting a but (the conjunction, not the noun) into a conversation immediately creates a dividing line between parties as it completely refutes the argument or word before it. Try using “and” instead. "And" serves as a bridge between people in the conversation because you now generate a cooperative reality as opposed to a conflicting one.
5. “I think”
When used to indicate a preplanned motive such as, “I think I’ll go to [X],” there’s an abstractness of intention that neglects any indication of commitment. In other words, to think is to consider doing something and not fully commit to it (do you like how I substituted “and” for “but” right there?). Try using “I believe” to assert your intention(s) if you want to sound more assertive.
Anything that negates or immediately focuses on the negative has less than ideal side effects. After all, who doesn’t like hearing positive talk? Instead of saying something like, “I don’t like [insert pet peeve here]” try saying, “I prefer [the opposite of the pet peeve] please.” This way, you’ve not only spoken to the positive but also affirmed yourself and your position (not to mention the fact that nobody likes being told what to do).
Balancing work and school responsibilities: Juggling professional and academic commitments is challenging regardless of an online student's field of study. But the task is magnified for educators because of the 24/7 nature of teaching, says Jennifer Chauvot, an associate professor of mathematics education at the University of Houston.
"They are coaching, they are tutoring," Chauvot says of educators. "Before school, after school. They're doing a lot of other activities. They're not just busy 8 to 3."
Don Dea's insight:
One way students might stay on top of their workload is by seeking online programs that have elements of synchronous – or real-time – instruction, where students and faculty meet virtually on a regular basis. They also might choose a program that organizes students into cohorts that progress through studies together at the same pace.
Both are characteristics of Houston's iSMART program, in which middle school teachers complete a master's of education in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis on integrating the disciplines of science and mathematics.
Recent graduate Elisabeth Williams, a math teacher at Westbrook Intermediate School in the Houston suburbs, says the program's weekly synchronous sessions kept her on task.
Optimal experience for your users and customers should be at the forefront of your decision. Will mobile help you achieve this goal? If focusing on the Web is right for you, do so, but keep in mind that mobile is expanding and that in time you may need to pay more attention to the mobile side of things. When you begin to experiment and expand your service across platforms, make sure you deliver consistent experiences.
Statistically, many of you are likely to be one of the leaders who will retire by 2020. If you are not in the retirement window, then you will be dealing with the leadership shortage that will ensue and continue for at least the next decade. This means you really need to start learning and developing new ways to manage your own career now because you will be wearing more hats with less resources. You also need to develop your capabilities a coach, especially if you are in small to medium-sized businesses that won’t be able to afford external coaches.
The important task is to find the barriers to the best information and remove them. These barriers may be in places you don’t expect, but they stand in the way of moving your idea forward. Such obstacles are not new. The video below shows that such obstacles may have been around since the stone age. Take a look. With a little imagination, you may find ways to remove significant barriers to your innovation.
Believe it or not, experts debate whether or not the skills gap is actually a real thing. I guess it’s not unlike global warming. If we don’t see it then it must not exist right? Last year though, 35% of 38,000 employers reported difficulty filling jobs due to lack of available talent; in the U.S., 39% of employers did according to an article in the Harvard Business Review by James Bessen, an economist at Boston University School of Law. What’s at the heart of the problem? So.many.things. First, there is the reality that people are performing jobs that support yesterday’s business models and objectives. To compete for the future requires that leadership establish a tangible and long-term vision for the new world and assess strengths and weaknesses of its workforce to prioritize strategies and investments in human capital. I once worked with a popular commercial and consumer insurance brand that celebrated a culture of never firing employees. While this created a unique family-like bond that once served as a competitive advantage, it is the company’s own culture that is now serving as its anchor. It just seems that there’s just no sense of urgency or meaningful incentive for individuals or teams to learn something new. Second, there are a growing number of jobs where humans need not apply. Automation is nothing new nor is it bad. Automation though is inevitable. However, with digital intelligence and capabilities comes the need for people to learn the skills and capabilities that keep the human workforce performing the jobs that machines cannot do today.
When we talk and teach about innovation, we often start with a discussion on the definition of innovation. We bring up several different definitions to help spur the discussion. The value is in the back and forth discussion. When people discuss creativity and innovation good things happen to the individual and the organization. The final definition is not nearly as important as the journey.
In comparison with other industries, US travel industry spending falls in the middle of the pack, making up just over 8% of total US digital ad spending and placing the industry sixth among all categories studied. That amounts to $4.85 billion in digital ad spending this year. Travel industry ad spending is expected to experience growth rates of 10% or more annually through 2017 and reach $7.27 billion by 2019
To judge fit, interviewers commonly relied on chemistry. "The best way I could describe it," one member of a law firm's hiring committee told me, "is like if you were on a date. You kind of know when there's a match." Many used the "airport test." As a managing director at an investment bank put it, "Would I want to be stuck in an airport in Minneapolis in a snowstorm with them?"
The problem is that the people you'd most like to be stuck in the Minneapolis airport with aren't necessarily the best employees — more likely, they're the employees most like you. She continues:
Discovering shared experiences was one of the most powerful sources of chemistry, but interviewers were primarily interested in new hires whose hobbies, hometowns and biographies matched their own. Bonding over rowing college crew, getting certified in scuba, sipping single-malt Scotches in the Highlands or dining at Michelin-starred restaurants was evidence of fit; sharing a love
Five years ago today, Uber launched its first service in San Francisco. Since then, the taxi-hailing app has expanded at an incredible pace — it’s now available in 311 cities across 58 countries worldwide.
That growth has translated to massive valuation numbers: in its third year, Uber was already worth $3.4 billion, and last year it raised at a $40 billion valuation. Latest reports indicate Uber is now raising another round at a $50 billion price tag.
Uber’s valuation growth is all the more impressive when you compare it to Facebook’s early years. According to BI Intelligence, it took three years for the social media giant to get to a billion-dollar "unicorn" valuation, and it was "only" worth $15 billion by its fifth year. It took almost 8 years for Facebook to get to the $50 billion threshold, before hitting its massive $100 billion IPO in 2012. Facebook is now worth around $225 billion.
All too often business leaders move on long before the changes that they were employed to design and implement are complete. As a result the workforce can feel deserted and de-motivated – confused by an array of initiatives that appear disconnected and half-baked in the absence of their inventor. Can an organisation nowadays – faced with the inevitability of short-lived episodes of leadership – avoid the potential damage left behind, following the departure of the creator and champion of a partially executed new strategy?
Though toxic leadership is a prevalent feature of the modern corporate world, with the right safeguards in place, even transient leaders can be valuable catalysts for change. Appropriate time must be given to monitoring and challenging behaviours, strategic plans and success in implementing these. Then there is a chance that the workforce will be left invigorated to continue what was started, through to its planned successful conclusion, even without guidance from the helm. But the risks of a damaging outcome always remain high.
Misconception #1: The best way to understand high performance is to study successful people and organizations In Search of Excellence, first published in 1982 by Tom Peters and Robert Waterman, is one of the most popular attempts to understand how companies achieve high performance. Peters and Waterman took 43 “excellent” American companies, and, by looking at archival sources, press accounts, and interviews, identified eight practices they all had in common—including a “bias for action,” and “staying close to the customer.” The book did incredibly well—selling 3 million copies in its first four years, and Bloomsbury called it the “greatest business book of all time.”
In corporate governance, there is a failure to clarify roles and responsibilities. A lack of clarity drives many directors to two very expensive extremes. Some directors over-play their roles, stepping on management’s toes, creating confusion and hampering the company’s ability to execute in response to market opportunity. Other directors fail to fully engage, taking up precious seats at the table that could be filled by someone whose ideas and efforts could really help the company move forward. In addition, the under-engaged director can tacitly support the ill-advised efforts of the over-engaged, or of activist investors who may not have the company’s best interests at heart. Directors who don’t fully understand the ‘how’ of their board work cost precious time and money as they over or under contribute. Boards who figure this out, who are clear on the how of their work together create significant competitive advantage. CEOs must do three things to help them get there
Don Dea's insight:
“Directors who don’t fully understand the ‘how’ of their board work cost precious time and money as they over or under contribute.”
Travel inflicts a number of stresses on family life. Missing out on the day-to-day bustle — from soccer games to keeping up on your kids’ schooling to basic conversations — can easily disrupt your family dynamic.
Don Dea's insight:
Here are five steps I take to minimize travel pains and maximize family time:
Think in opportunity costs. There’s only so much time in a day, so you will inevitably have to make sacrifices. You’ll miss family events, so you need to determine which ones are acceptable and which ones are nonnegotiable. For instance,I have traveled on my own birthday four of the past five years, but I haven’t missed any of my three children’s birthdays.
Prioritize quality over quantity. You have limited time at home, so you need to make the most of it. Although you might be exhausted after a trip, staying bedridden won’t make your absence any easier. Make your health a priority overseas, and you’ll be energized to spend quality time with your family when you return.
Stay connected. Once your kids are old enough to have email, keep in constant contact with them while you’re on the road. A quick text or note shows that you care and are still engaged in their lives. I also make sure to check my kids’ grades online and even set up online quizzes on Quizlet to test their knowledge of European countries and capitals to keep them connected to my travels.
A smart goal is one that will be achieved. And if you want your goals to be achieved, these five SMART factors have several fatal flaws.
First, the SMART factors don’t do much to ensure goals are important to the organization.
“Relevant” is a weak statement of importance. Any goal worth defining and tracking should make a significant impact on the success of the organization.
Second, the SMART factors say nothing about the individual who needs to achieve the goal. You can’t tell me a particular goal is equally smart for any number of different individuals
Don Dea's insight:
People are not interchangeable and therefore the goals assigned to them can’t be either.
Third, the SMART factors ignore characteristics that increase the odds that a goal will be achieved. They help managers put good, strong stakes in the ground, but they don’t do much for those who must execute.
Fourth, the SMART factors do little to gain the commitment, another critical component for success.
Thus, it is time to take a new approach. It is time to bring SANITY™ to goal setting. Success is far more likely if you create important goals that will be achieved. Let SANITY™ be your new guide to setting goals.
S stands for Supported. If you don’t support people by providing adequate resources, time, authority, guidance, feedback, and follow-up, they are not likely to achieve their goals. Many a SMART goal has withered on the vine, fed only with wishful thinking and no real support.
“On-scene and in command.” This five word statement seems like a formality, but actually, it represents a mental checklist for critical actions that will make any leader more successful in whatever he or she is trying to accomplish through the efforts of others.
Don Dea's insight:
When a leader “takes command” they are initiating organized and well-coordinated teamwork. Taking command of a fire emergency, a new business position, or anything for that matter, will empower a workforce by defining the chain of command: the management and leadership for deciding operational priorities. This simple fire-tested and business-proven process also serves to establish channels of communication, the methodology to acquire necessary resources, and the authority for all future directives.
Develop Situational Awareness
As I eagerly accepted the new position of Regional Director, I realized that I did not know much about the current situation in that region. Faced with this lack of knowledge, I needed to take command in similar fashion as I had during my firefighting career every time I responded to a new and unfamiliar emergency situation. This would allow me to develop situational awareness, which included learning as much as possible about the resources that I was now accountable for. I consider resources to be: people, things, money, and time. I started with the most important resource by interviewing all of the people who worked in my region, with special attention given to the first level leaders (my direct reports), at each work site.
Innovative ideas are often shot down in their infancy. The ideas behind successful organizations such as FedEx, Amazon, Dyson vacuums and countless others were received with skepticism and sometimes contempt. Why are good ideas shot down? Why do otherwise great leaders not see that the solution to the problem is right in front of them? Why can’t some people even see or understand the problem?
Our culture is built on trust. We treat our people like adult professionals. That means we trust them to make the right decisions for our business each and every day without looking over everyone’s shoulder all the time. We’ve built our culture on freedom, autonomy and individual accountability. I believe it’s these core values that keep our team happy, productive and profitable all at the same time.
Many large, global companies are trying to enable better lateral coordination to solve client issues more efficiently. "Just the designation that you're part of this temporary group can eliminate some of those bureaucratic layers where the coordination between people laterally is harder than it needs to be," Edmondson says.
Valentine was one of the authors of a Stanford paper on crowdsourcing teams to handle more complex projects, applying many of the ideas of team scaffolds. She has also incorporated the research into one of her courses, with students creating e-books in 48 hours through crowdsourcing on a team scaffold platform. While the hospital's pod members were physically in the same area, Valentine notes that co-location can be virtual in the case of crowdsourcing, using chat rooms, shared folders, or shared websites.
"There's more complex work that really requires this teaming on the fly, and the social technologies make it more possible to find and coordinate with each other," Edmondson says
As you build your programs and strategies for 2015, think about your role not only as a learning executive but also as a “cheerleader” and “chief inspiration officer” for your company. You’ll be surprised how important this role is in today’s economy where people want skills more than almost anything else.
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