Soft Wiring For Accountability

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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

Graphic by codling.

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

Organizations must be clear about who should paddle and who should steer. Photo by J. Jeff Kober.

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

All sorts of possibilities for creating excellence exist once a framework has been outlined.

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

Declare Your Manifesto

An Apple Store in Orlando, Florida. Photo by J. Jeff Kober.

In our previous post, we talked about the advantage of Soft Wiring. We want to share with you some important ways to make that happen. We’ll begin with Declaring Your Manifesto. At Ritz-Carlton, it’s “Ladies and Gentlemen Serving Ladies and Gentlemen.” At Disney, it’s “We Create Happiness.” What do those two things have in common? They … Read more

Hard Wiring Vs. Soft Wiring

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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

Associates line up on  both sides to congratulate outstanding sales associates at Nordstrom. Photo by J. Jeff Kober.

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

Creating an Employee Engagement Strategy: Hosting Stand Up Meetings

In a previous post, we spoke about the fact that most leaders think an engagement strategy is important, but that few really have such a strategy in place. We then outlined the importance  of having an action planning session and how to do so. The challenge with many organizations is they do in fact set … Read more

Creating an Employee Engagement Strategy: Action Planning Sessions

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Gallup has noted that 90% of leaders think an engagement strategy can have an impact on business success, but barely 25% of them actually have such a strategy. Part of the reason is that they don’t know how to do so. This blog offers ideas about how to do that by establishing and focusing on 1-2 Important but Non-Urgent … Read more

What Collaboration Is and Is Not

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Beyond the interpersonal behaviors of a single team is the need for organizations to work across multiple teams to accomplish their shared mission. Collaboration is defined as the act of working together with one or more teams to achieve a common goal. Yes, it’s similar to team dynamics, which places the success on several individuals … Read more