Editor’s note: Weekly Wrap is stepping back and celebrating the life of Nelson Mandela today. We’ll be back with our regular format next Friday.
By Howard Mavity
After 30 years of seeing the worst of the workplace, I have few heroes left. This week, I lost my JFK or MLK.
I’ll remember where I was sitting when I learned that the lion who was Nelson Mandela, had roared his last. I choose to believe that’s how he went out. –as a lion of a man.
My 19 year-old son and I were in Soweto last June when everyone expected Nelson Mandela to die. It’s hard to describe our feelings as we sat in his church near his home. We pondered all that we had learned in South Africa in the preceding weeks. Read more…
Good people resist change for lots of reasons.
Perhaps they’re comfortable with the way things are. Perhaps they feel threatened. Perhaps they think the new way won’t work.
As a leader, how do you respond? If you try to “sell” change, your people will feel, well, sold. And if you simply demand change, you get reluctant participation at best.
So what’s the right answer when it comes to getting employees on board when its time for your organization to make big changes? Read more…
China Gorman, CEO of Great Place to Work, wrote an excellent Thanksgiving Day TLNT piece on San Francisco’s new Family Friendly Workplace Ordinance (FFWO) that goes into effect on New Year’s Day.
“The Flex Work Question: Is Legislation Really the Right Approach?” asks many questions we all should be asking – and answering.
This is not one more HR or legal blog post noting just that 1) a UK practice of many years has skipped the Washington logjam and come to San Francisco; and, 2) it requires a set of (pick one) modest or burdensome steps for employees and employers to follow in dealing with flex requests. Read more…
First of three parts
Many firms use exit interviews to find out why employees are leaving their jobs.
Unfortunately, asking an employee on their last day “why are you leaving?” doesn’t provide useful information in time to prevent the turnover.
A superior approach that I’ve been recommending for over 20 years is a “stay interview.” I alternatively call it a “pre-exit interview,” because it occurs before there is any hint that an employee is about to exit the firm.
A stay interview helps you understand why employees stay, so that those important factors can be reinforced. Read more…
“Success is to be measured not so much by the position that one has reached in life as by the obstacles which he has overcome.” — Booker T. Washington, educator and author.
In my upcoming book Execution IS the Strategy (Berrett-Koehler, March 2014), I emphasize the fact that, for all intents and purposes, leaders can no longer legislate strategic execution or plan too far into the future.
Rigid strategies quickly become stale in the current business arena, and binding our front-line team members to them may result in consistent failure.
A more effective solution? Empower individuals to take ownership of their jobs, so they can use whatever strategy works best in the moment to execute effectively and productively. Read more…
Chris Argyris passed away last month, at the age of 90.
This Harvard Business School professor earned 14 honorary doctorates, produced 30 books, and published over 150 articles. Anyone in the field of Human Resources should know of this man’s contributions to the field of understanding, as the frame a foundation for improving human performance.
Think about this: We make decisions every day. We go through a process to do so.
Argyris defined this process as the “ladder of inference.” He pointed out that we often skip steps in the thinking process, for example starting with assumptions rather than real data. Starting with assumptions, not only eliminates gathering facts, but also looking at the context surrounding the facts, and then interpreting the facts within the context. Read more…
OK, they’ve probably never met, but it strikes me as interesting how two “turnaround” leaders of embroiled organizations, took wildly different approaches, yielding very different results.
No one will deny that JCPenney and the Catholic Church have had a run of bad years.
JCPenney stock was down and market share was shrinking, losing ground to Kohl’s and T.J. Maxx. The Catholic Church had been trying to shrug off the weight of scandal for decades and unify an increasingly diverse flock.
Each organization brought in new leadership to effect radical change. Read more…
I sat next to him because he never spoke.
They were 10-hour days. The work wasn’t challenging. In fact, I spent most of my day trying to look busy.
And, on top of it, I had to ride a bus out to a facility in the middle of the high desert in Idaho — an hour and 20 minutes there and an hour and 20 minutes home. Of course, while I was on the bus, I wanted to sleep.
He was graying, slightly overweight, and weathered. He didn’t look like a person anyone would want to be seated next to on a bus. That meant the seat next to him was always open. And, for nearly three months, I took it. Read more…
I hear the all the kids love Snapchat!
OK, I’ve been hearing this for over a year now, but never really found any reason to write about the product. I even downloaded the App and tried it out. I still don’t seem to have a need.
I’m an adult. Unless I’m doing something I shouldn’t, there is no need for me to have a message that self destructs in 1 to 10 seconds. I guess it might be something to give your managers who love to say inappropriate things to their staff, but then you’re encouraging them to say and do inappropriate things!
Even though I don’t get it doesn’t mean it’s not a great idea. It just means I’m old. Read more…