TED Talks Four-star general Stanley McChrystal shares what he learned about leadership over his decades in the military. How can you build a sense of shared purpose among people of many ages and skill sets?
Via Dr. Anna Kayes
Corporate and Business Strategy and Execution in the Post Industrial, Digital Economy. Want to know more? Visit me on LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/karlwabst/
Curated by Karl Wabst
Instead of grouping all the people-related activities together under HR, businesses should organize them according to types of service provided — and move a couple of them to other functions altogether. Splitting the function into two doesn’t go far enough.
There is too much focus on efficiency or cost cutting in HR. This maintains a support role mindset.
Until HR changes how it behaves it is unlikely top management will see the department as a strategic role.
HR has to become more effective at what the business wants and sees value in.
If your biggest customer fails to see your value, you have a problem. Perception is reality.
“Since streaming sites and rogue torrent sites make it easy for any teenager to access millions of songs for free, it comes as no surprise that young people, who are the music industry’s core consumer, are not paying for physical or digital singles or albums,” says veteran music lawyer Bernie Resnick. “Without the support of the most important segment of the customer base, it becomes extremely difficult to sell enough units to qualify for gold or platinum sales awards.”
The music industry once disrupted society. Music still does. It always has supported and disrupted.
Seeking to limit music is like trying to control the flow of water. For a time you may be successful but water always finds a way. Music is a feeling as much as a product.
Executives sought to control the means of production and distribution. A lot of money spent on copy protections only tried to make fans feel like criminals. These attempts to outsmart tech savvy teenagers failed.
One result that seems to have surprised these executives is that their tired, old strategy has been voted off the island. No one saw that coming!
Times change and society changes. Sales certainly have changed.
Mourning metrics, that focus on physical sales only highlights how out of touch these executives are.
Guaranteed the people lowest on their own organization charts could have told the C-Suite how easy it was to get past their controls. As in any business, bad controls are bad business.
The music and print publishing industries need to disrupt their old behaviors.
Put those considerable resources into developing a new direction for your industry.
If your neighbour owns no guns, he’s seeing a different ad IN 1984 Ronald Reagan’s campaign aired a syrupy ad declaring: “It’s Morning Again in America”....
New technology may mean that we all live in our own bubble.
Is there such a thing as too much personalization?
I am not against targeted ads. They can be useful and effective.
If people do not recognize what is going on, it may divide people too far.
What do YOU think?
The day of the session in France, my actions were guided by the lessons I had learned from many successful years of training in the U.S. I started by getting right to the point, introducing strategies, practical examples, and next steps. But the group did not seem to be responding as usual.
Not everyone thinks like Americans. Do your research. Know your audience. Get there early. Listen. Adapt yourself. Do not expect the audience will change how they think to accommodate you. Do not forget to have fun.
Management Skills for International Business
Managing Global Virtual Teams
The Culture Map: Breaking Through the Invisible Boundaries of Global Business
Strategy has shrunk. For many firms and even for some prominent strategy consultants, the concept is now nothing more than “just-in-time decision making” or “a few critical initiatives” or other variations on “adaptability.”
Abandoning strategy is a fool’s errand.
Volatility, or an increased level and rate of change does not negate the need for strategy.
Investors, customers and employees will not trust an organization that changes direction based on the latest whim or new marketing study.
Yes, there are many changes going on in our personal lives, society and organizations. There are many factors driving change, including technology. None of those factors is new.
No, change is not unique to our generation.
Granted, the speed of communication is far greater than ever before. There is also an uptick in global commerce. Still, these are not new. The ability to deal with these changes has also evolved.
Go talk to your grandparents. Listen to their stories.
There are still people alive today who were born before World War II or the Depression. Some were born into families that farmed the land, with horse and plow not huge tractors and combines. Some were born in houses without internal plumbing or electricity.
Try to grasp the transformations that the World has seen in their lifetime. Huge change, affecting the World and ordinary lives will be part of their story.
A short time ago, Americans were striving just to feed themselves and their families. There was a global financial crisis. There was also a drought. It forced families to leave their land, watch their investments in livestock wither and die. We struggled with immigration and religion. Some people were convinced the World was ending. Now, tell me again about how there is so much change today.
Organizations and people have always done better when they have something to strive for.
Strategy has shrunk to a set of annual plans and budgets at many companies. That does not make it right.
Read the annual reports from Google, Amazon, Microsoft, or Facebook. All of these hugely successful corporations have strategies. Despite the snippets reported in the tabloids and blogs, they all have corporate and business strategies.
I know. You are not one of those monolithic corporations. Without knowing, and being able to communicate or sell others on following where you want to go, it is likely that you never will be.
Every couple of years marketers seem to adopt a word and then beat it to death, talking about it to clients and prospects at every opportunity ... I bring this up because it seems to me that the current term-of-the-moment is 'Digital Transformation'.
This article makes some good points about the obsession of Marketers and IT with shiny new objects. Sometimes it is like watching a cat chase after a laser pointer.
The cat is getting exercise and sharpening its hunting skills. The cat is not running a for-profit business. The cat is not bound legally nor morally to improve return on investment. Cats just want to have fun.
Marketing and IT are obsessed with trying to maintain or expand power in their own separate domains. The connection to business and corporate strategy is usually secondary at best.
Being able to answer shareholders and customers, who want to know what is in it for me, is not secondary. That is a symptom of an internally focused corporation.
Customers and shareholders are the reason for, and fuel of business. Internal politics cannot take precedence at a time when shareholders and customers have increasing power and voice through social media.
Now, let us get back to the article. In the end, the idea that we replace one misunderstood, over-hyped term with another falls flat.
I think one idea bears repeating, in case you do not read the article. “Real digital transformation is as important to HR, finance, sales and operations as it is to marketing. It is too important to be siloed in the marketing or IT departments.”
I agree wholeheartedly.
I also agree with Dr. John Kotter on a related point.
Today, we have too much management and not enough leadership. Without leadership, terms like digital transformation of disruption are hollow.
Managers focus on maintaining status quo or, getting the job at hand done. That is a necessary task. It keeps money coming in. Leadership means bringing people, companies, products and shareholders to a new destination or goal.
Managers can be leaders too. Without focus on leading, buy-in from senior management and organizational change, the manager is likely to fail.
Disruption is different than deploying some new software. The same is true of digital transformation.
For more about the differences between leaders and managers, I have provided a few resources below.
Disruption touches HR, finance, marketing, sales operations and investors. It is too important to be siloed in the marketing or IT departments.
What Leaders Really Do
Management Is (Still) Not Leadership
I studied large-scale change and innovation efforts in 56 randomly selected companies in the high-tech, retail, pharmaceutical, banking, automotive, insurance, energy, non-profit, and health care industries. My research found that the majority of the efforts failed. A hallmark of the successful 32% was the involvement of mid-level managers two or more levels below the CEO.
Leaders can emerge from any part of an organization. Middle-level managers however, occupy pivotal positions.
Resistant mid-level managers can more easily block changes since they act as the conduit between workers and senior management.
Unless you have a strong presence, taking the time to explain to the whole company where you want to go and the types of behaviors you want to see, you are relying on others who may not agree with you to implement your direction.
For more depth,
Executives who count on middle level managers to filter the communications of mood, problems and inspiration from the bottom up may find themselves out of touch with the people who do the jobs that make the company run or fail.
This is one reason why developing leadership skills at this level are key. Managers, who see their jobs as maintaining the status quo, are likely to feel threatened by change.
Do something old-fashioned management used to do. While figuring out how to teach middle managers to lead get out of your office and walk around.
Have conversations with people. Learn the jobs today. Take the microphone out of your hand. Management by walking around may open your eyes. Watch Undercover Boss on TV. Think about what you might find if you were to work the floor of your factory, department store, etc.
Too much status quo in a volatile business market means the death of innovation. Change starts with one person doing their job differently.
Let it be you.
|Suggested by Flevy|
A successful business requires both a well developed strategy and the ability to execute on that strategy. Strategy without execution is merely theory. Many companies develop robust strategies, but fail at operationalizing their strategies into implementable steps. This article provides overviews for 12 business frameworks related to various aspects of Strategy Development and Strategy Execution.
This site has some good references to basic strategy tools. A major problem I found defeats the point of the article. There is no good definition of what strategy is.
If you cannot define strategy, do not go any further. You are not alone by any means.
I suggest reading "Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works" (http://hbr.org/product/playing-to-win-how-strategy-really-works/an/11202E-KND-ENG) first.
If you were not familiar with these resources, it would be better to go back to school and get an MBA.
If you do not have two years to devote to learning business basics, or you want to see the types of things you can learn in Business School this article is a decent start.
Amazon reported the biggest operating loss in its history, despite a 20% boost in sales, as the company’s many investments continued to weigh on its bottom line.
Amazon is challenging the faithful. Their book business is seen as a cash cow that they use to fund new offerings or rising stars.
Investors have held the line, but counting on that continuing as a strategy is a risky bet.
Eventually, the faithful ask for return on investment.
If their diversification does not pay off substantially they will be faced with cutting back their current strategy or perhaps split the company according to risk.
I know that I have stopped using Amazon as much as I used to. Prices are higher than other sources more often. There are problems ordering simple items. Customer service, especially when dealing with partners is spotty.
Amazon may have ventured too far from their core competencies without offering enough return.
We will have to wait and see what they do to right the ship.
Will investors give Amazon the gift of time for Christmas?
Read this related that provides further insights into what may be changing at Amazon that helps to explain the downturn at Amazon.
At Amazon, It’s All About Cash Flow
4 principles I’ve learned that can help you enhance your leadership while concurrently bringing out the best in those around you.
This article is definitely worth a read.
There is one caveat. To get the intended impact you must understand the concepts of VUCA.
If you have not heard of it, are unclear about its meaning and implications for both military and business operations, here are some resources for you.
Leading in a VUCA Environment: V Is for Volatility
Leading in a VUCA Environment: U is for Uncertainty
Leading Effectively in a VUCA Environment: C is for Complexity
Leading Effectively in a VUCA Environment: A is for Ambiguity
Strategic Leadership Primer - US Army War College
A Framework for Understanding VUCA
If PowerPoint is more your speed, here's a nice presentation on VUCA
McChrystal on Leadership Culture
Stanley McChrystal: Leadership is a Choice
Stanford Graduate School of Business
Stanley McChrystal: Listen, learn ... then lead | Video on TED.com
The U.S. government will replace roughly 9 million government-issued payment cards with EMV chip-and-PIN versions early next year in a push to increase
Despite the sense it makes for retailers and consumers, America lags behind in the adoption of more secure payment technology.
There is not one answer to this question. There is plenty of blame to go around.
I was glad to see Obama push adoption of pin and chip for government programs. It is a small step but there is so little leadership in America today that it stood out.
Most agree that many merchants are not aware and not ready of the changes next year.
Continued use of the magnetic stripe on your credit card means higher risk of fraud and higher prices as merchants try to recoup self-inflicted losses.
EMV (Europay, Mastercard and Visa Visa) cards will help in one area, but fraudsters will increase on phone payments. Why, you may ask. Purchases made when the card is not present are a greater risk since they bypass the more secure technology.
Read on to educate yourself about some of the issues.
U.S. Makes Move Toward ‘Chip and PIN’ Credit Cards
Will the U.S. government's security requirements lead to faster adoption by retailers?
Obama Uses His Bully Pulpit To Push Cybersecurity—and Endorse PIN-Based EMV
FACT SHEET: Safeguarding Consumers’ Financial Security
2014 LexisNexis® True Cost of FraudSM Study
Post-Recession Revenue Growth Hampered by Fraud As All Merchants Face Higher Costs
AmEx Program Aims To Kick-Start EMV Card Acceptance Among Small Businesses
Retailers Realize EMV Won't Save Them From Fraudsters
Employees who fail to adopt new technology may cost you. Fear of technology is their problem. Allowing them not to change is your fault.
Liberals and conservatives turn to and trust strikingly different news sources. And across-the-board liberals and conservatives are more likely than others to interact with like-minded individuals.
The survey says - You live in an information bubble!
Polar opinions create stagnation. Every action has an equal and opposite reaction.
Change the channel. Mix it up! Watch Fox News and Read the NY Times.
Listen more than you talk. You will learn something.
Form your own opinion. Make the effort.
Be an American. Be a human. Be excellent to one another.
On the face of it, you would not think of Johnson Controls as a leading candidate to be an innovator in the world of the Internet of Things. Johnson Controls is a 125-year-old company based in Milwaukee that produces more than $40 billion in revenue per annum.
Innovative companies can be 125 years old.
You probably do not want to be "Bunny Wang." Brand yourself wisely.
IBM said it will provide an update on its projections in January, ditching a five-year plan to boost profit. The shares tumbled as much as 8.4 percent, dragging down the Dow Jones Industrial Average. Warren Buffett, IBM’s biggest shareholder, had as much as $1 billion of his investment wiped out.
It is time to update the IBM fight song. Who can forget classics like
Many today are unfamiliar with the IBM tradition of rally songs. Check out the clips here http://www-03.ibm.com/ibm/history/exhibits/music/music_clips.html.
It is probably too early to say IBM is on the verge of doom. The company has survived tumultuous times before.
Saying their trouble is all about technology is naive. IBM’s history is full of change, including massive farms of virtual servers that were similar to what we call cloud computing today.
Do not miss the changes in social structure, customer expectations, legal and staffing trends that play into IBM’s current valuation and future.
Cloud demand will ebb and flow. There are questions about how data is handled in different jurisdictions, who owns the data, who can use it for what and how far has government spying gone. There is a lot more going on in the cloud than the public knows.
Does the company have a vision? They have options. They have more intellectual capital and physical assets than many firms considered successful.
Will a leader emerge to take the company to a better place?
In the meantime, ask what effect the forces that killed IBM’s ambitious forecast have on your company.
IBM Is in Even Worse Shape Than It Seemed
The president pushes the U.S. to do more to halt the "infuriating" exposure of personal financial data to hackers
Finally, we have a public official willing to prod the payment industry forward! Do not celebrate prematurely.
The move is too little, very late but it draws attention to the problem. This is more than credit card issuers, Congress and the companies that accept card payments have been willing to do.
The trend has been to manage risk rather than to lead the US to a payment standard that has been in place in many countries for years.
Touting the adoption of pin and chip technology while allowing the magnetic strip to remain is foolish. Why, you ask?
Credit cards with both technologies are still vulnerable to old-style fraud. Worse, they provide consumers with a false sense of security.
Then, when fraud still occurs, consumers will fail to see the value in pushing forward with just pin and chip.
Let me say that again slowly. Pin and chip does nothing to reduce fraud as long as the traditional magnetic strip remains.
The delay in adopting pin and chip technology in the US is shameful. We lag behind yet claim we lead.
White House FACT SHEET: Safeguarding Consumers’ Financial Security
What You Need To Know About EMV Credit Cards
Retailers Object to EMV-Card Adoption — And Some May Not Switch
Target Breach Sends Chills: Is Any Merchant Safe, Even With EMV?
Credit, debit cards with chips remain vulnerable to fraud
Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital nurse Briana Aguirre, who cared for her friend and co-worker Nina Pham after she tested positive for...
Portrayal of nurses as the ones who breached protocol and allowed the spread of a deadly virus caused an unexpected reaction in Dallas.
This felt like a personal affront to those involved, and those who understand the risk to their professional reputation. One result is nurses breaking ranks with the hospital.
In a hyper-connected world, loss of employee trust can result in real damage to consumer trust and regulatory scrutiny. Loss of customers, profit and shareholders may follow.
How the hospital responds may decide its fate.
America’s mindset of invulnerability just changed. What does it mean for you?
Review your incident response plans. If you do not have policies, then write, communicate and test them.
Expect that the press may interview any employee. Expect employees, family members and friends to write blog posts.
The rules have changed.
Related Presentations and Resources
Grief And Organizational Change
Understanding the VUCA World with Bob Johansen and David Small https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KJqCPFzq6kU
Adaptive Leadership for the VUCA World: A Tale of Two Managers
A Framework for Understanding VUCA
Six Ways Leaders Can Thrive in Ambiguity
Leading in a 'VUCA' world
It's a VUCA World presentation by Denise Caron
Companies must look beyond the technologies themselves to the competitive transformation taking place. This article, and a companion piece to be published soon in HBR, will deconstruct the smart, connected products revolution and explore its strategic and operational implications.
The real change is not about technology. Having more data is not very useful if people and organizations do not transform to make use of it.
Data is not knowledge or understanding. Going digital or being social takes more than money, hardware and software.
I have seen many companies fail because they allow people to behave the same old way. Equip your people to change. Expect them to change. Reinforce change.
Read John Kotter’s Leading Change. Next try Switch! It Starts With One is also a good read. There are many links in this article. Follow them.
The Internet of Things is not about the technology. Transformation is never about a single thing.
An online only HBO offering could inspire millions to finally cut the cable cord.
Will HBO trigger a major shift in how we watch and pay for TV?
You have the power to change the world--the world of those on your team. Try one of these power-packed, three-word phrases that great leaders use.
Use your words! Choose them wisely. They matter.
What do we know about global health governance, and what does this mean for containing Ebola?
History repeats itself. Once again, the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.
If Democrats, Republicans, Tea Partiers and Libertarians cannot stop arguing, we will all pay an unnecessary price.
Gridlock is not our ally. Stop campaigning long enough to govern.
Recognize that political doctrine, technology and mistrust can be weapons. The assailant may not be a foreign aggressor like ISIS or ISIL. Then again, it may.
The mistrust we have bred can be used against us. Just as in Africa, we may be our own worst enemies.
We have faced other conflicts, even disease outbreaks before. We had to come together. Put aside the party line and act like human beings with a common enemy.
This is not a drill. The World is watching America. Will we lead, follow or get out of the way and let someone else do what we refuse to do?
Ebola, Security, and Governance in West Africa: Why a Limited Problem Needs a Global Response
Nurses claim alarming lack of proper equipment and protocols to handle Ebola
L.A.: Where the rich don't vaccinate
Sanitizing crew turned away at Ebola patient's residence in Dallas
Electronic-Record Gap Allowed Ebola Patient to Leave Hospital
Digital firms like Google and Apple could be a threat to banks' important revenue stream from payments.
It is not about the payment. It is about making what a customer is trying to do easier.
First, many companies really do not have a strategy. They confuse their vision or their mission statement or their values with a strategy. Those are different things. Strategy involves explicit choices about...
Some salespeople will sell anything to anyone. That may be unfortunate. Why?
Yes, this may increase revenue in the short term. Over the long term however, this tactic may sabotage the company strategy.
Companies must answer what are our Winning Aspirations or our Ideal Future. Who are our customers?
Additional questions spring forth from there.
Whom we do not want for customers? Where should we compete? Where should we not compete? Who is our competition? How do you plan to beat the competition?
There are additional steps, but you have to listen to the podcast for a start.
For now, remember this.
“A desk is a dangerous place from which to view the world. I think that’s true, especially the sales world.”