Business

23
Jan

Learning from Failure: The Mojo of Great Companies

Learning from Failure: The Mojo of Great Companies What is it that successful and growing companies know that your company might not be doing? These companies embrace work failures by treating them as strategic opportunities to learn. After all, failure is an inherent outcome of any risk-taking. And in today’s business world, being risk averse is a dead-end. Reframing failure can also help boost your employer brand. Rewarding calculated risks creates an inherently more exciting workplace culture than the status quo; that type of culture will also help you attract quality people - people who know how to fail and bounce back quickly. To be clear, the mistakes we’re talking about don’t involve sending out proposals riddled with errors. We’re talking about attempting something – a marketing idea or a product innovation – having the effort ...

04
Jan

5 Communication Habits All Leaders Need to Motivate a Team Good communication is certainly a strong leadership trait. But what exactly does that look like? A global leadership study revealed that 85 percent of companies report an urgent need to develop employees with leadership potential. Let me echo that massive study: We are in an era with an alarming leadership shortage. As more Boomers retire and Millennials continue to increase in numbers as the largest working generation, today's companies just aren't prepared to develop tomorrow's leaders. Don't hit the panic button just yet, but I did want to raise your left eyebrow. If you're serious about leveraging leadership strength to grow your business (and you should be), then, plain and simple, develop your employees with high potential and the right people skills to move into leadership ...

14
Nov

The Best way to build company culture

The Best way to build company culture In the $12.2 billion merger between Marriott International and Starwood Hotels, Marriott CEO Arne Sorenson sent a letter to all 180,000 Starwood associates that centered not on the business benefits of the merger, but on the cultural implications. “A big part of our people-first culture is treating people with respect and transparency,” wrote Sorenson, whose company has been on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list 18 times. “You’ll experience both as we work through this process.” When the Internet emerged in the mid-1990s, many saw it as a fad, promoted by young techies who had no idea how to run a business. Now we know that businesses that didn’t embrace the Internet early on had to catch up later. When it comes to company culture, we ...

18
Jul

Brexit: How to Support Worried Employees

Brexit: How to Support Worried Employees Keep a close eye on your staff so that post-referendum anxiety doesn't spiral out of control Employers will be facing many questions about how business is going to proceed following the referendum vote to leave the EU. Larger organisations will have already planned for the outcome and for some, in the short term Brexit may mean cuts in research and development, training, benefits and even jobs. Smaller businesses may be hard-pressed too – and face a situation made more challenging by their relative lack of resources. One thing is certain. Employees will be concerned for their jobs – in the near future and beyond – and if you are a European working in Britain you may be feeling alienated. Whatever the future brings, uncertainty is neither good for business nor ...

25
Feb

Why Critical Thinking Skills are Essential in Business  In 2013, Laszlo Bock, senior vice president of people operations for Google, told The New York Times that the company would no longer consider candidates’ Grade Point Averages when hiring – because ‘they’re worthless’. A little later, he explained why: “The No. 1 thing we look for is general cognitive ability, and it’s not IQ. It’s learning ability. It’s the ability to process on the fly. It’s the ability to pull together disparate bits of information.” For Google it was a bold move; the company was previously known for asking candidates for a transcript, GPAs and test scores. But Google is not alone: Bock’s comments reflect Barack Obama’s feelings on the importance of thinking skills in the future of the world economy. The US ...

22
Feb

We wonder if that moment will ever arrive when we finally know that all our hard work and sacrifice was worth it. This moment is something beyond merely making or losing a lot of money, gaining a title, or improving an SEO ranking. We’ve all heard the saying that there are two defining moments in life: When we are born and when we find out why. We believe there is a third moment and perhaps it is the most important. It is the moment you commit to actually do something about it for the long haul. It is the moment when there is no turning back. In this pivotal moment we discover who we are and what we stand for and what we are going to do about it. It isn't ...

28
Jan

How To Cut 17 Minutes From Your Next Team Meeting Here’s a simple way to cut 17 minutes from most meetings: Have a Statement of Achievement. Recently, I did a survey of people coming out of meetings, and one of the survey questions was: Did the meeting you were just in accomplish its original objective? Survey participants were given three response choices: “Yes,” “No” and “I Have No Idea.” Sadly, “Yes” wasn't the most common response given. “No” wasn't either. That’s right, the most frequently given response was “I have no idea.” The startling fact is that 90%+ of meetings fail to produce an identifiable achievement. The reason why so many folks are sitting in meetings with no idea why they’re there is because they lack a clear objective. That’s what a Statement of Achievement ...

26
Jan

Your Strategy Should Be As Unique As Your Business The marketplace can be a difficult ecosystem in which to thrive. Fortunately, your business has its strengths that differentiate it from the competition. What are those unique strengths, and how does your strategy capitalize on them? You can look at any company’s uniqueness and gain a basic understanding about its viable strategic options. Building your strategy on the foundation of your uniqueness emphasizes your competitive advantage and makes it harder for the competition to catch up with you. This article highlights four of companies I have come across that have successfully injected what makes them different into their strategies. Which of them offers insights into a strategic direction that you could take advantage of for your company? 1. Simplicity as a strategy. So what if your ...

29
Oct

How to save face after you've lost it at work It finally happened. You snapped and yelled at that annoying co-worker, or your boss finally got under your skin so much, you actually cried. Now come the feelings of shame, embarrassment, and, "What do I do now?" Losing your cool at work can be a problem. In the best-case scenario, it leaves people a little unsettled. More serious emotional outbursts can threaten your job and your career, says psychologist Casey Mulqueen, director of research and product development at leadership training company TRACOM Group in Centennial, Colorado. Determining the damage done, making it right, and getting your cool, calm, and collected cred back requires some strategy and work. STEP ONE: TAKE STOCK OF THE DAMAGE The first step is to take an objective look at the situation ...

25
Sep

Ask yourself: 1. How committed am I? This one trumps all the rest, and getting to a meaningful answer involves some serious self-honesty. Commitment comes from motivation—the fuel you need to get really good at something. One of my mentors liked to say that working journalists had to publish 100,000 words (that’s roughly 140 one-page stories in Forbes) before they got the hang of their craft. Analysts at investment banks suffer two years of 80-hour weeks learning to build financial models; neurosurgeons slog through 12 years of training; Yo Yo Ma has practiced cello for something like 50,000 hours thus far (nearly 14 years worth of 10-hour days). Michael Jordan is so competitive that, during his Hall Of Fame induction speech in 2009, he chided his coach for playing team mate Leroy Smith ahead of ...

29
Jan

Reflections on a Metaphorical Gauntlet

It seems like only yesterday that we were challenging our newsletter readers to set themselves career goals and achieve success with the support of our goal-setting toolkit - Get Set GO! (Which is now available for download as a handy e-book from the learning hub). It is mind-blowing to realise that that particular challenge was laid down twelve months ago! I wonder how successful you were? My hope is that, no matter whether you missed, met or exceeded your goal expectations, you at least had fun and learnt something about yourself and those around along the journey. Well let me say that, as a company, Elysian is not one to shy away from a challenge and as we were the ones to throw down that particular shiny gauntlet we could hardly back away now could we? So, we also ...

29
Jan

When Can Innovation and Hierarchy Co-Exist?

Designing an innovative organization doesn't necessarily mean a “flat” organization. We tend to believe that innovation and hierarchy are antithetical, but in truth, innovation often thrives in hierarchical organizations. Here are the key ingredients to an innovative organization, whether hierarchical or not. The Internet: A Democratic Utopia: We tend to believe that hierarchy kills innovation and creativity. This is particularly true for organizations that design and build technology. The cultural heritage of the Internet is one that implicitly values a utopian vision of anti-authority. The initial plans for ARPANET explicitly included a commitment to the open architecture concept, with “no global controls at the operations level” (Leiner, 1998). In other words, those that designed the Internet designed it explicitly to have no central authority. This decentralized structure connoted a sense of democratic ...

24
Nov

13 Key Elements of a Great Strategy

An effective strategy is critical to business success - it allows you to evaluate where you want your company or project to go and how in order to ensure you are relevant in the marketplace. In this poster, Frank Sonnenberg lays out 13 elements of a great strategy which would be great to use as a check-list...   1. Objective - Is the objective clearly defined, and is it based on a realistic view of the marketplace? 2. Knowledge - Is the strategy based on superior knowledge of your customer, marketplace, and competition and a realistic assessment of your own capabilities? 3. Initiative - Does the strategy enable you to set the pace in the field and jump ahead of the competition? 4. Mass - Are you focusing your efforts in those areas that provide the ...