Plain-language contracts are better for your business — and your customers.
It’s become a cliché to say that leadership matters, but diversity is one of the areas in which executive leadership is often ineffectual. Executives’ espoused beliefs are frequently inconsistent with their behaviour, and they typically underestimate how much the corporation really needs to change to achieve its diversity goals. That’s because diversity strategies tend to lay out lofty goals without providing the structures to educate senior executives in the specific challenges faced by various constituencies. In addition, these strategies often don’t provide models that teach or encourage new behaviours. One of the most frequently mentioned diversity-related HR practice was the five-minute drill, which takes place during the discussion of management talent at the corporate and business unit levels. Executives are expected at any moment to be able to discuss any high-potential manager and an explicit effort is made to ensure that minorities and females are also discussed. The result has been to make the executives more accountable for spotting and grooming high-potential minority managers both in their own areas and across the business.
Great leaders tap into the needs and fears we all share. Great managers, by contrast, perform their magic by discovering, developing, and celebrating what’s different about each person who works for them. Here’s how they do it.
Companies can sustain their entrepreneurial energy even as they grow. Safeguarding the organization’s soul is a critical if little appreciated part of the founding cohort’s job, on par with such key decision areas as governance and equity splits. Netflix, Nike, BlackRock, Warby Parker, Study Sapuri, and Starbucks all blossomed as start-ups thanks to their founders’ deliberate efforts to preserve the alchemy that made them great enterprises from the beginning. Over the long term, a strong soul will draw in and fire up various stakeholders. Even as companies institute processes, discipline, and professionalization, they should strive to retain the spiritual trinity of business intent, customer connection, and employee experience. It’s the secret to not only growth but also greatness.
Photography: Webb Chappell Over nearly four decades, Ellen Langer’s research on mindfulness has greatly influenced thinking across a range of fields, from behavioral economics to positive psychology. It reveals that by paying attention to what’s going on around us, instead of operating on auto-pilot, we can reduce stress, unlock creativity, and boost performance. Her “counterclockwise” […]
In this Harvard article, "owning" the situation and recognizing that leadership and management blind spots, assumptions, and unconscious biases are often the reason behind high turnover, low productivity, and morale!
Augmented reality technologies promise to transform how we learn, make decisions, and interact with the physical world. In this package we explain what AR is, how its applications are evolving, and why it’s so important.
The finding: The best leaders tend to be outsiders who don’t have a great deal of experience. The research: Gautam Mukunda studied political, business, and military leaders, categorizing them into two groups: “filtered leaders,” insiders whose careers followed a normal progression; and “unfiltered leaders,” who either were outsiders with little experience or got their jobs […]
It’s conventional wisdom that’s supported by a decade of academic research: Extroverts make the best leaders. These people—dominant and outgoing—are favored in hiring and promotion decisions, and they’re perceived to be more effective by supervisors and subordinates alike. But our research suggests that in certain situations, an introvert may make the better boss. To be […]