Blame or solutions?

March 18, 2019

By James Lawther via  Article

“Blame is natural

The minute something goes wrong we seek out somebody to blame.  Somebody to take the rap.  It is human nature to find a fall guy when things go belly up.

Blame is easy

We live in a connected world.  We work within a mesh of colleagues, customers and suppliers, so there are always plenty of people involved in whatever has gone wrong.  It is easy to find somebody to point the finger at, justly or not.

Some managers have made finding blame an art form.

The search for a scapegoat is the easiest of all hunting expeditions ~ Dwight D. Eisenhower

Blame stops action

Once we have found somebody to blame the process is simple:

  1. Sacrifice them (either a minor blood letting or full on slaughter at the altar of redundancy).
  2. Ignore the problem.  It has all got quite unpleasant.
  3. Sweep the whole sorry incident under the carpet.  Nobody wants to be associated with failure.

Once blame has been established and the guilty have been punished we move on.

Blame isn’t a solution

Sweeping things under the carpet doesn’t stop them from happening again.

Imagine if a pilot fell asleep at the controls of an aeroplane.  It wouldn’t be hard to find the man to hold accountable.  It was the pilot who fell asleep after all.

  • He should have stayed awake…
  • He should be punished…

Sack the pilot and we can all go back to our business as before.  The skies will be safe again. Won’t they?

Unfortunately sacking one pilot for falling asleep won’t stop another one from getting some shut eye. Pilots fall asleep at an alarming rate.

A better approach

Dig a little deeper, and find out why the pilot fell asleep. Then do something about it.

  • Could you prevent tired pilots from taking the controls of planes?
  • Could you change working conditions so pilots aren’t tired?
  • Could you make pilots’ jobs more interesting to prevent them from falling asleep?
  • Could you devise a system to wake the pilot if he gets drowsy?
  • Could you warn others if the pilot falls asleep?

If you start to ask the questions the solutions appear.  There are a hundred and one things that could be done to reduce the chances of pilots falling asleep at the controls of an aeroplane.  But if your approach is to blame the pilot and then sack him then you won’t find any of them

Blame limits progress

Finding somebody to blame closes our minds and stops us from learning.

Poor managers find blame, good managers find solutions.”


As smart as humans?

March 18, 2019

Dilbert – First Ai As Smart As Humans

Bad habits

March 18, 2019

By Dan Rockwell via leadershipfreak.blob  Article

Lust for Skittles and Other Bad Habits

“Wouldn’t it be great if lust for humility was as strong as lust for Skittles? …

7 bad leadership habits:

  1. Adding tiny improvements to the ideas, plans, work, or behavior of others.
  2. Providing answers before asking questions.
  3. Focusing on fixing people’s weaknesses and neglecting their strengths.
  4. Intervening quickly rather than making space for people to work through their own issues. Jumping in to help is permission for others to jump out.
  5. Interrupting.
  6. Getting bossy when stressed.
  7. Correcting but seldom congratulating.

Bad habit replacements:

  1. Curiosity. Go on a curiosity walk-about every morning at 10 a.m.
  2. Humility. Let others be right. Jettison your need to have the final word. Just stop talking.
  3. Gratitude. Go on a thank you tour at 2:30 p.m.
  4. Silence. Smile, nod, and say less.

‘We can never free ourselves from habit. But we can replace bad habits with good ones.’ Steven Pressfield”

“doing the next right thing”

March 18, 2019

Via Fortune CEO Daily Newsletter  Link

“Do business leaders need to be moral leaders? Dov Seidman, CEO of LRN, says the answer is yes, and has some new research to back that up. He provided an early look to members of Fortune’s CEO Initiative in a phone conference yesterday morning. Top line: in a survey of 1,100 executives, managers and employees, 87% agreed the need for moral leadership in business is greater than ever. And nearly three-quarters said they felt their companies would perform better if their leaders displayed moral leadership.

Why does it matter? Because in today’s fast paced world, Seidman says, the job of effective leaders has changed from ‘doing the next thing right’—something, increasingly, machines can handle—to ‘doing the next right thing’—which involves moral choice.

‘There are unprecedented forces out there that are drastically reshaping the world,’ putting greater demands on business leaders. As a result, ‘the business of business is no longer just business. The business of business is society.’

Seidman has been making this case for a number of years—including during this appearance at the Fortune Global Forum held in Rome and at the Vatican in December 2016. The new research shows a growing number of business leaders share his view. That’s a step in the right direction.

But here’s the rub: only 7% of employees surveyed said their leaders often or always exhibited the behaviors of moral leadership. Moral leadership may be in greater demand, but it is still in short supply.”

Large numbers (e.g. U.S. national debt)

March 11, 2019

Million, Billion, Trillion



Only 36% negotiate

March 11, 2019

By Sheila McClear via  Article

Survey: Only 36% of candidates negotiate salary when offered a job

“64% of respondents to a survey said they didn’t negotiate their salary on the last job they took, accepting the first offer given to them.

So you’ve got the job, and it’s time to talk money. Do you see the first offer the company gives you as the one you must accept? Or have you done your research on salaries in your market and region and are prepared to ask for more?

According to a new survey, the majority of job candidates choose not to negotiate – a mistake that could cost them a bundle in lost income over the course of their career.  64% of respondents said they ‘accepted the first salary offer they received the last time they were hired,’ according to the ZipRecruiter Annual Job Seeker Survey, which involved 50,000 job searchers. (That percentage almost exactly matches research from Robert Half earlier this year that found 61% didn’t negotiate didn’t negotiate for a higher salary once they got the job).

  • 84% Gen Z workers aged 18-24 accepted the first salary they were offered, making them the group the most likely by far not to negotiate
  • 74% of Millennial workers aged 25-34 accepted the first salary they were offered
  • 59% of Gen X workers aged 45-54 accepted the first salary they were offered
  • 59% of Boomer workers aged 55 to 64 accepted the first salary they were offered

The younger an unemployed worker is, the more they feel ‘financial pressure’ to accept the first job offer they receive, according to the survey. …


Time in the market, not market timing

March 11, 2019

By Mitch Tuchman via  Article

“Why pick stocks at all when you can own the whole market? What the numbers show us that ‘time in the market’ trumps ‘timing the market’ year in and year out. Rather than renting stocks for a short period of hoping for a pop, you own them for years.

Why time in the market works

Over those years, the dividends pour in at about 2% a year. That money is reinvested automatically. Likewise, earnings growth is steady over the long run, about 5%. This translates into steady appreciation across the whole market. And, just like that, you compound your money, year in an year out, just by buying and holding stocks. Add that to a portfolio of foreign stocks, bonds, commodities and real estate and you’ll likely do a bit better.

Rebalance steadily as you go and you avoid the worst of the excessive, scary highs and the depressing lows, which can happen and will happen over the years.

Time in the market works because it forces you to ignore your dangerous emotions. We love the idea of winner stocks and want to own them forever. We hate the idea of losing money and will do anything to stop that pain. The fact is you will experience both emotions. A disciplined portfolio keep us from overreacting and hurting the long-term positive return we all need to retire well.”