Vote Today! And Every Day!

In anticipation for this week’s major election, TED Radio Hour hosted a podcast called Democracy on Trial. Eric P. Liu, founder of Citizen University and former Deputy Assistant to President Clinton for Domestic Policy, was one of several people interviewed in this podcast. Eric presented some really important thoughts around the demos of democracy. Demos means people, … Read more

What Is and Isn’t Entrepreneurship

Organizations talk more and more about creating a culture of entrepreneurship. I thought I would share my thoughts about what is and isn’t entrepreneurship–at least how I see it. Consider the following: This is more than just engaging people—and it’s far beyond employee satisfaction. But it does create those fruits. This is not about empowering … Read more

Defining Award, Reward, and Recognition

Accountability never succeeds without making work consequential. And part of making performance matter is in providing for reward, award, and recognition. For our purposes, we define these terms as follows: Reward: The benefits obtained as a result of an action taken or a job well performed. Such rewards can be both extrinsic (such as a … Read more

Soft Wiring For Accountability

We want excellence. We want people to be performing at their very best. But how do we get them there? There is a hard wiring way to hold employees accountable. That usually involves performance plans, annual reviews, and other mechanisms that seldom align themselves toward attaining real results. Most people tie a negative connotation/emotion to … Read more

Exceed in Meeting Employee Needs

In a previous post, we spoke of separating steering from rowing. If supervisors and executives aren’t steeped in the rowing—if they aren’t figuring out the do’s and don’ts of a thousand different policies and procedures—than just what is their role? In our work, Lead With Your Customer, Mark David Jones and I note that there are … Read more

Separate Steering From Rowing

World-class organizations separate the work of rowing from steering. Too often, management and executives want to “pick up the paddles” and make things happen themselves—or at least dictate what they should be. Rather, the emphasis should be on putting that manifesto and values in place, then supporting their teams in helping them be their very … Read more

Freedom In A Framework

In our previous post, we spoke about declaring your manifesto as a way to soft wiring the organization for moving to the next level. Returning to Tim Cook’s manifesto, you see that some very key core values are woven in his statement. The power of innovation, being collaborative, demanding excellence and even recognizing/learning from one’s … Read more

Hard Wiring Vs. Soft Wiring

Most organizations want to be better than they are. Some do so successfully. World-class organizations—whether they are in the public, private, or non-profit sectors—have learned that there is a definitive link between highly satisfied customers and a highly engaged workforce. As a result, they are looking for ways to create that customer-centric culture where employees … Read more

How to Host Stand Up Meetings

In the previous post, we spoke about the idea that stand up meetings are needed to keep front and centered important (though not necessarily urgent) conversations that need to be held with your employees. We noted that stand up meetings are brief conversations held daily, focusing on important topics such as improving customer service or … Read more