Wow! S-P-E-E-D

Last week I focused on s-p-e-e-d.  This week is about another driver of our success:  smart use of TIME!
… that is your time and others’ time.

On the subject of time management, this week’s “Wow!” goes to ———-.

Here’s our “wow” for this week: I am sending to you a “WOW!” as a person who works in steps so that you can get input and stay on track. You get stuff done, with effective use of you time, and mine.

Why is this “wow!”?
Here’s what we don’t want:If you’ve managed others you may have run into the type of person who, if there is a deadline tomorrow, happily gives themselves until the end of the day (usually waiting until the last minute to even start after having plenty of time) not showing drafts along the way so the manager has no clue if it is on track (even if asked for, and promised repeatedly), leaving it to the manager to now make up for the lost time after hours …and leaving no time to correct the work if what was done was not what was expected.  Or at times the results are coming, “today!,” “tomorrow for sure!”… and then never comes at all.

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Wow! Visibility and customer engagement

This week we made great headway in our efforts to become more visible to, and engaging of, our customers.  And I can already feel that we are doing this with greater s-p-e-e-d than before.  So on that note, this week’s “Wow!” goes to ———-.

Here’s our “wow” for this week:   I am sending to you a “WOW!” because you have risen to the challenge of my need for s-p-e-e-d and focus on content.  You are turning things around much more quickly even though you are working fewer hours to do so!

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6 tips to engage your employees (especially during disruptive times)

As I work with companies on Abrige performance improvement, risk management engagements… and as I am now (over the past 10 months, actually) studying the bootstrapping, high profits information marketers… I keep reading, and saying, the word “engagement.” We can no longer just sell to customers. And we can no longer expect our new hires to put up with work “just because we do it that way” and feedback once per year.

So let’s talk about how to engage our employees, contractors and even outsourced workforce to ensure we get what we expect!

Here are a few ideas that have been successful:

1) Surveys, questionnaires, assessments, process checks – short, simple, and often
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Wow! October 26

This week I am honoring a person that continues to wow me with his focus and effort.  We are going through transition – mostly growing pains – and with this comes the need for a ready, capable and trustworthy pool of resources; good people.

…This week’s “Wow!” goes to team member, ———.

Here’s our “wow” for this week: I am sending to you a “WOW!” because you continuously reach into our cracks, look to our end-goals and come up with answers.  Stuff never drops with you, and you help bring in the resources to keep us moving forward.

Why is this “wow!”? Not having to restate, rework, push out a deadline, wonder or fret can save hours in my day, and keeps things running smoothly for everyone.  It also helps retain customers and greatly improves our opportunities with prospects.

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Are performance management, business intelligence and balanced scorecard systems failing?

Are performance management systems – CPM, EPM, BI, BPM, Balanced Scorecard, Dashboards, etc. – failing?

I’ve been saying this for quite some time, and I’m now hearing it from others as well. It feels ok to be somewhat vindicated in my opinion. I’d much rather have organizations grow stronger and build value again.

I recently wrote: You are not getting answers…yet…

Did you know that your transactions-focused business intelligence and performance management systems are likely doomed to fail you? That’s right: as sophisticated as they might be, an inherent gap in your own systems is putting your business at risk.

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Wow! October 18

To all:  We continue to move through quick changes in our team. You are not seeing all the changes, since you cannot see the bcc list for this email – I do.  And I have mixed feelings about it.  Mostly, it is a very good thing.  We are more closely aligned – together, toward company goals – so when a fit isn’t right, it is known very quickly.  If you’ve ever had a relationship problem that just seemed to drag on forever you’ll understand what I mean.  If you’re not quite sure I’ll just summarize with:  it is abundantly better to have happy surprises and to be in the position of growing others’ strengths.  These “Wow!” emails are a lot of fun for me.  And since they are about your strengths – thanks!

So on to this week’s “Wow!”…

This week I am honoring a person that has just made it through the 30-day review hurdle.  There is considered scrutiny during this period by me, and usually also by at least one other team member.  Even though we employ “at will,” it is important to me to find people I’d like to stick around for a long time.  These 30 days are not an easy time for some because I do everything I can to get the mis-alignments out into view.  In fact I hired two people at the same time and only one made it…  and so….

…This week’s “Wow!” goes to our newest team member, ———.

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Business and leadership failures; how to avoid being next

The recent global upheaval has brought down some iconic companies, and in some cases it is obvious why these leaders failed.

But in most cases it is not that clear how exactly that leader failed, when we reconsider by visually stepping into his or her shoes without benefit of hindsight. Most of these leaders say they made the best decision with the information they had and were aimed in the direction their stakeholders wanted them to go. Could you or someone you know be next? And it is with this realization that we leaders pause.

Below is one of several news releases that depict a leader that in hindsight didn’t lead in the right direction. This one is about the SEC’s Chairman Christopher Cox. An earlier article was about AIG’s former CEO Martin Sullivan. My comments are in italics.

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Wow! October 11

We had an unexpected change this week so rather than being in Texas today, I am here…

It is good to remember that “Everything in life happens for a reason and a purpose, and it serves us.”

Now I realize you are thinking I’m off on a tangent!  And you may be wondering why so many of these “Wow!”s are focused on what seems to be non-business stuff.  What I can tell you is that people are the critical resource of any organization and without them we would have no “Wow!”…

That said this week’s “Wow!” goes to a person I’ve been working with for a few years now and we will both tell you it has been rocky at times.  And at times some things left us feeling not in control.  Yet we both keep coming back with consideration of what is in our control to improve the situation…and we take action.

The action-taker being honored today is ——–.

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Communication tips for leaders: when times are uncertain

This transformation guidance is more personal in nature. In the last post I posed some questions about communication in tough times.

Here are a few tips if you are open to mental work:

Take steps to rid your uncertainty with the present (or past). Be certain about the future.
How? There are many ways to do this. I’ve found some that work well for me that I’ll touch on here and can expand if you are interested. I’ll focus on leaders, who are often processers and problem-solvers.

If you are a problem-solver you may not feel settled without fixing whatever it is right now. Many will say that the best thing to do is to focus on solving the problem. That was me. I’ve made progress.  Sure I still solve problems – lots of them. It is that I select the problem and typically tackle it very early when something still can be done about it, sometimes even catching it before the problem is well known.

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Wow! When the team helps develop great connections

This week’s “Wow!” goes to a person who is brand new to our team and in fact we’ve only held one one-on-one conversation.  So, this email is one of several fast actions taken because of what was triggered during this call.  The nature of that call is worth sharing and that is why it earns a place as this week’s “Wow!”  The person on the other end of that call was ———-.

Here’s our “wow” for this week: “WOW!” , adding value was on your mind when we talked, and although we couldn’t know where the conversation would lead when we started, as there was no real agenda other than some questions about our agreement, your aim was served…and C-Secure Systems will be stronger because of it.

Why is this “wow!”? Without giving too many details but to answer the questions of those of you who are now thinking “What happened on that call?!” …  We discussed each of our company’s purposes and markets so that we could determine if there was any conflict in our working together and, if not, then what type of non-disclosure agreement would best suit.  But what happened then is more than the signing of an NDA.

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