Management gemsFind here some gems from our monitoring of the best publications on leadership and management
Driving the innovation portfolio
A company cannot solely rely on incremental innovation. It also needs more radical innovations to renew itself and ensure its long-term growth. Yet, the uncertainty inherent to such projects often leads to discard them in favor of more rapidly promising initiatives.
In this podcast, Mark Maybury, Chief Technology Officer at Stanley Black & Decker, discusses the way to avoid this risk. He notably explains how he has put in place a ranking of the group innovations in six categories, defined according to their level of disruption in the market. This allows for driving the investments in the different types of innovation in a strategic manner, to ensure that the contributions expected from each of them complement each other smartly to answer both the short - and the longer - term challenges. A highly rigorous and structured approach from which you can seek inspiration to optimize your innovation strategy.
Source: Extreme Innovation With AI, podcast Me, Myself, and AI, MIT Sloan Management Review /Boston Consulting Group, March 2022.Share
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Is your company culture healthy?
Did you know? Almost 90% of business leaders and financial directors think that improving their company culture would boost their financial performance. And 80% acknowledge that it is not as healthy as it should be. One employee outof ten even perceives their company culture as toxic!
The authors of this article correlated the results of numerous studies on what can lead to a nefarious company culture. They converge to point out three domains of attention:
• Managerial practices. Are some of their behaviors toxic for others? Do they display a lax attitude towards tyrannical or disrespectful behaviors?
• The social norms. What behaviors, however detrimental they may be, are well rated or considered as acceptable in daily interactions, according to the unspoken and explicit functioning rules of the organization?
• A sub-optimal work organization. Does the way in which the work is organized foster some unhealthy behaviors? A pragmatic guide to audit your company culture.
To read: How to Fix a Toxic Culture, Donald Sull, Charles Sull, MIT Sloan Management Review, September 2022.Share
Making space for introverts
The Western world — and even more so the business world — strongly value behaviors associated to extraversion. Feeling at ease in a group, moving rapidly into action, knowing how to speak publicly and whipping up the crowds are considered as virtues. To the extent that many people with an introvert nature learn, from the youngest age, that their natural way of being is not the right one and that they should rapidly learn how to behave “as they should”.
Susan Cain reminds us that solitude is necessary for creativity, for maturing ideas, for deep thinking work. Some great and particularly influential leaders, such as Rosa Parks and Gandhi, were actually introverts. And this is no coincidence: it is noticeable that discreet people spontaneously have better listening skills and seek less to impose their own ideas. Susan Cain thus encourages us to have more balanced work modes: securing individual working time whilst resisting to the “all together” trend, and taking into account everyone’s preference instead of expecting that all abide by the dominating extravert model.
To watch: The power of introverts, Susan Cain, TED.com, March 2012.Share
Towards the end of her life, Edith Piaf was singing: “No, no regrets. No, I will have no regrets…” Like her, many have raised the fact of always looking forward and of knowing how to detach from the past as a life philosophy. Butis it really a good idea?
In this fascinating book, both simple and knowledgeable, Daniel Pink reinstates regrets. Indeed, they are universal. They are part of our natural range of emotions and feelings. Like every negative emotion, they hold a function. If we regret to have let a conflict go sour or to not have had the courage to take a risk that could have been rewarding, it is likely that confronting this regret, and learning its lessons, will help us make better choices later. More so, our strongest and most persistent regrets are rich in learnings. It is sometimes difficult to determine what our fundamental values are — beyond an obvious catalogue of nice principles to which everyone can only adhere. Listening to our regrets reveals what we attach a great importance to. An invitation to a promising introspection effort.
To read: The Power of Regret, Daniel H. Pink, Penguin Publishing Group, 2022.Share
Redefining employer/employee relations
Consulting firm Korn Ferry draws the lessons from the impact of two years of pandemic on the relations between companies and their personnel. This report deserves an attentive read. Indeed, we already know the trends, but their implications go further than a simple crisis to manage. With, as corner stone, a new balance to find after a clear change in the balances of power.
Amongst the points to remember, let’s note that the time at which we only had to suffer the ongoing revolutions is over: it is time to get ready to manage “disruptive” changes. Because we discover that the shortage of talents, at all levels, is indeed here. We talked about it for years but took little action. (Qualified) workers are now in a demand market and think in a more individualistic manner. Burn-out is also widespread and cannot be ignored. The horse has bolted, too many workers are distressed for the situation to be sustainable. The concerns for the environment and these for inclusion are a given and become essential criteria to choose one’s employer.
A strong call to thoroughly redefine our strategy around a human resource that has become scarce.
To read: The 7 areas dominating future of work trends in 2022, Korn Ferry, November 2021.Share
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