No time to read? Here’s the answer!

No time, there’s just not enough time…   Over 6000 people now have a copy of JUMP!  It’s sobering, though, to know that many of you simply won’t have found the time to read it – and may not even have found the handy Executive Summary on Page 11. If your Leadership Team isn’t working as well as it could, your time challenges will be even worse. Dysfunction and inefficiency in the team makes work and slows progress. So what do you do if you need to improve your team but haven’t managed to read the book?   If that sounds familiar – this is just for you We’ve put together a short video guide to all the key ideas in the book. It’s less than eight minutes long and it will give you a high-level summary, not only of the key theories but also of how you can get started with your own team. Click on the image below to see the video (and don’t forget to turn on your sound). More
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Categories: Changing Your Team, Delivery Conversations, Learning Conversations, Relationship Conversations, and Why Leadership Teams Matter.

Look Behind You!

How can facing out into the organisation be a mistake for HR?    Happy New Year! I hope 2016 brings you success, enjoyment and learning in all that you do. “Look behind you!” I know pantomime season is all but over, but HR professionals would do well to heed the classic refrain. While you’re working incredibly hard to make your people initiatives work, you’ll know that you’re battling all sorts of problems and opposition to their success. Ironically though, the biggest barrier to success is much closer to home than you might think. There’s a paradox for anyone in an HR role. The harder you try to make your HR projects deliver, the less attention you’re likely to be paying to the single biggest determinant of their success of failure. For people interventions to make the change that’s needed, you need the active (and aligned) support of the most senior leaders in the organisation. In short, an ineffective top team is the key barrier to delivering a meaningful people agenda, so
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Categories: Changing Your Team, Delivery Conversations, Learning Conversations, Making the Value Case, Relationship Conversations, Stories and Case Studies, and Why Leadership Teams Matter.

Team Alignment – a great idea but what does it mean in practice?

Most members of leadership teams would recognise the conflict and ineffectiveness that arises from members pulling in different directions.  Team alignment is much discussed but few leaders agree exactly what it means, let alone know how to achieve it. It’s simpler than you might think and this article shows how.   Alignment – the Holy Grail for leadership teams? Every leader I have met would recognise this image as a representation of a team who are working to different agendas and looking to different goals.               Enormous energy is wasted by all of the members of these teams in understanding and reconciling the different positions, and by the leader in particular. Even when the competing viewpoints are brought together the discussions and decisions that ensue are usually poor and badly implemented. These compromises take two forms:- In order to gain agreement, a ‘lowest common denominator’ compromise is reached. Everyone knows that it’s a sub optimal answer but also accepts that it’s the best that
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Categories: Changing Your Team, Delivery Conversations, and Why Leadership Teams Matter.

EXECUTING STRATEGY – An Old Problem with an Older Solution

Stephen Bungay takes a new look at the problem of making strategy happen and finds an old solution from somewhere unexpected. The reason that executing strategy continues to be a problem for companies across the world is that we are still constrained by a legacy model of the organisation as a machine. In the fast-changing, unpredictable environment of modern business, successful execution means closing the gaps between plans, actions and outcomes: the knowledge gap, the alignment gap and the effects gap. The approach allowing us to do so was developed by the Prussian Army in the 19th century, and is based on the model of an organisation not as a machine but as an organism, a set of human relationships. They closed the knowledge gap by formulating a clear intent; the alignment gap by a rigorous method of briefing the next level down and backbriefing to agree the implied actions; and the effects gap by giving individuals freedom of action within bounds.
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Categories: Delivery Conversations.

Do You Need to Improve Your Productivity?

FW Taylor on improving productivity Do you ever despair about the inefficiency of your organisation – or of the way you spend your own time? If so then our first great leadership thinker, FW Taylor, has some ideas that can help you break through to be more productive. FW Taylor – Who’s he? Frederick Winslow Taylor focused his thinking on the improvement of work and productivity in the emerging workplaces of the industrial revolution. I’ll let Peter Drucker introduce him to you:- “He was the first man in recorded history who deemed work deserving of systematic observation and study. On Taylor’s ‘scientific management’ rests, above all, the tremendous surge of affluence in the last seventy-five years in the developed countries. Taylor was the Isaac Newton of the science of work and laid the first foundations to which not much has been added since” Recognise any of this? Taylor called his approach to work and productivity ‘Scientific Management’. It was a large body of work but some of the key principles
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Categories: Delivery Conversations.