Archive for June, 2009
ManagementSpeak: Simply put, our staffing levels were bloated and hindered our ability to be an efficient and nimble team-oriented company. Translation: The board rubbed my nose in the difference between having a good idea and running a good company. Pat Rowe joined the KJR Club by passing along this explanation from Owen Van Natta, MySpace […]
You have to read this book. If you lead an IT organization, or part of an IT organization, you have to read it. I didn’t even write the sucker and I’m saying this — what does that tell you? The book is Business Agility: Sustainable Prosperity in a Relentlessly Competitive World (Wiley, 2009).
ManagementSpeak: We’ll meet to discuss alternate ways to approach the problem. Translation: I don’t want to look like a dictator, so we’ll discuss the alternatives before choosing the decision I’ve already made. Karen Gayda chose to join the KJR Club by sending in this choice phrase.
Hierarchical decision-making is rooted in levels of authority, not in depth of expertise and specific knowledge of the situation. It isn’t entirely foolish, either: Presumably, those higher in the hierarchy (which might be a pun but I doubt it) are there because in the past they demonstrated leadership and good judgment in their areas of […]
ManagementSpeak: Tell me what the problem is in this organization. Translation: Tell me what the problem is in this organization, so long as it isn’t me. Because Steve Perry saw the problem with asking for the problem, he joins the KJR Club.
It’s fashionable these days to rail against the hierarchical organization. Business pundits frequently claim the age of hierarchy is over. They claim to have developed exciting alternatives, which they’ll sell you for a small fee. Uh … no. Far from being dead, hierarchical organizational design continues to be inevitable for all but the smallest organizations, […]
ManagementSpeak: You know, I’m actually a pretty smart guy … Translation: … but not smart enough to avoid saying so. This week’s anonymous contributor was more than smart enough to figure it out.
“If I had asked people what they wanted, they would have said ‘faster horses,’” Henry Ford famously said. The lesson is clear: Your inner muse is a more reliable source of information than all the market surveys you can afford. What Ford didn’t say was, “If I had listened to people when they told me […]
ManagementSpeak: This shouldn’t take you too long. Translation: I don’t know how long it should take, and I don’t care. Get it done today. It didn’t take Alan C. Earnshaw long to join the KJR Club.
When it comes to leadership, coercion is the first refuge of the lazy. Last week’s column put forth this modest little aphorism, and its proof: In healthy organizations, excellent employees, individually and working in teams, presented with a terrific idea and a well-thought-out plan for implementing it, will want to make it real and will […]