It’s the “and”

October 31, 2016

By Dan Rockwell via leadershipfreak.wordpress.com   Article

Companies Choose Unqualified Managers 82% of the Time

“Only one in ten people have the talent to manage. No wonder, according to Gallup, companies choose unqualified managers 82% of the time.

If you disagree with Gallup’s findings, establish a criteria for effective management behaviors and survey your employees, anonymously of course.

It’s the “and”:

The “and” in the following sentences makes management challenging.

  1. Building relationships and delivering results.
  2. Answering expectations from higher ups and treating people like humans rather than tools.
  3. Getting things done today and reminding people of the big picture.
  4. Giving support and challenge.
  5. Having tough conversations and staying optimistic.
  6. Innovating and establishing routines.
  7. Listening to input and making decisions.
  8. Prioritizing time and remaining flexible.
  9. Expecting performance and developing people.
  10. Providing negative feedback and affirming positive behaviors.”

20 brutal truths

October 31, 2016

By Matthew Jones via inc.com   Article

20 Brutal Truths About Life No One Wants to Admit

“Here are 20 brutal truths that every single person needs to hear.

1. You’re going to die and you have no idea when. …

2. Everyone you love is going to die, and you don’t know when. …

3. Your material wealth won’t make you a better or happier person. …

4. Your obsession with finding happiness is what prevents its attainment. …

5. Donating money does less than donating time. …

6. You can’t make everyone happy, and if you try, you’ll lose yourself. …

7. You can’t be perfect, and holding yourself to unrealistic standards creates suffering. …

8. Your thoughts are less important than your feelings and your feelings need acknowledgment. …

9. Your actions speak louder than your words, so you need to hold yourself accountable. …

10. Your achievements and successes won’t matter on your death bed. …

11. Your talent means nothing without consistent effort and practice. …

12. Now is the only time that matters, so stop wasting it by ruminating on the past or planning the future. …

13. Nobody cares how difficult your life is, and you are the author of your life’s story….

14. Your words are more important than your thoughts, so start inspiring people. …

15. Investing in yourself isn’t selfish. It’s the most worthwhile thing you can do. …

16. It’s not what happens, it’s how you react that matters. …

17. You need to improve your relationships to have lasting happiness. …

18. Pleasure is temporary and fleeting, so stop chasing fireworks and start building a constellation. …

19. Your ambition means nothing without execution–it’s time to put in the work. …

20. Time is your most valuable asset–you need to prioritize how you spend it. …”


Short selling cyber victims

October 31, 2016

By  via fortune.com   Article

The Ethics of Short Selling Cyber Victims

“Everyone agrees bug bounties, whereby companies pay hackers to tip them off about vulnerabilities, are a good idea. But now professional investors want to get in on the action, which raises hard questions about whether this is a clever market strategy that promotes security — or just sort of sleazy.

The issue became big news after a short-seller firm, Muddy Waters, announced this month that St. Jude’s medical devices had cyber vulnerabilities. The firm is poised to make money after St. Jude’s stock dropped over 5% on the news. According to a Bloomberg report, this triggered off a frenzy of investor interest that could kick off a new strategy that goes like this: “Find a company or industry that is adopting Internet-connected devices, check whether the gadgets are hackable, place your trades and publish the research.”

St. Jude’s is not exactly happy about being the guinea pig for this investment strategy: It is suing Muddy Waters, saying its announcement was false and defamatory. Meanwhile, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says it is looking into the vulnerability claims (Muddy Waters told the agency about the claims before going public with them).

While the hedge fund crowd is tantalized by the idea of a new high yield investment strategy, the cyber-security community may have second thoughts. If this strategy of short-selling cyber victims catches on, will this create perverse incentives that result in longer lag times before problems are patched? Or will the specter of short sellers just provide another incentive for companies to take their security more seriously? It’s too soon to say for now, but we can expect to hear more about this in the future.”


The reverse is true

October 31, 2016

By  via businessinsider.com   Article

Facebook’s go-to management manual says you can identify a great boss by who they spend their time with

“You’re a manager who oversees seven employees: two are underperforming, one is your star, and the rest deliver what they’re supposed to but not much more. How much time do you spend with each? Common sense would suggest you spend most of your time with the struggling employees to get them back on track, since your other employees are doing well.

The opposite, however, is true, argue Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman in their classic management guide, ‘First, Break All the Rules.’

When the book was first published in 1999, it was controversial in the HR community, Buckingham told Business Insider, because it advocated for approaches that were, in cases like the one mentioned here, the opposite of what generations of managers had been taught. The coauthors weren’t acting on intuition; rather, they had derived their conclusions from 25 years of Gallup studies of 80,000 managers across 400 companies. …

… top performers are the ones who drive progress at the company, and that is why they need the most attention. Managers must ‘carve out a unique set of expectations,’ ‘highlight and perfect each person’s unique style’ and do whatever they can to assist their employees in achieving their goals.

If managers are spending most of their day working with their worst team members on these three objectives, then perhaps they are fighting a losing battle and these employees need to be let go, the coauthors argue. And this doesn’t happen in a vacuum. They write that, ‘if you pay the most attention to your strugglers and ignore your stars, you can inadvertently alter the behaviors of your stars. Guided by your apparent indifference, your stars may start to do less of what made them stars in the first place and more of other kinds of behaviors that might net them some kind of reaction from you, good or bad.’

‘Counterintuitively, employees who are already performing above average have the greatest room for growth,’ the authors write. ‘Great managers also know that it is hard work helping a talented person hone his talents. If a manager is preoccupied by the burden of transforming the strugglers into survivors by helping them squeak above ‘average,’ he will have little time left for the truly difficult work of guiding the good toward the great.'”


A failure of leadership

October 24, 2016

By Steve Keating via stevekeating.me   Article

“Being fired from a job is one of the most traumatic events a person could experience in their lifetimes. Researchers say it is up there with the death of a loved one, divorce, imprisonment, and personal illness.

The decision by a leader to dismiss someone from their job is not a decision that should be taken lightly. It can and often does have huge life implications for the person being fired; the feelings of failure often linger even after they find new employment.

But the person being fired isn’t the only one who should feel a sense of failure. So should the leader who fired them.

Here’s why I say that. If you’re a leader and you have someone working for you who isn’t getting the job done then the likely cause is either that you hired the wrong person or you’re not providing them the tools or training they need to succeed.

Either way at least part of their failure is on you. With that in mind you may want to think a little harder before firing someone who isn’t meeting your expectations.

I suppose you could use the excuse that you inherited a person that someone else hired. That may let you off the hook a little but only a little. Leaders build and develop people no matter how and where they find them. If you have someone reporting to you that you are unable to develop then that’s at least a partial failure of your leadership.

Now, here is another failure of leadership: NOT firing someone who needs to be fired.

No matter how someone got to a point where they need to be fired, no matter who is responsible for that person’s shortcomings, when they need to go then they need to go. Allowing  an unproductive, possibly disruptive person to damage the morale or productivity of the greater team is a serious failure of leadership.

You might believe you’re avoiding conflict by ignoring the problems caused by a poor performer but what you’re really doing is fermenting greater conflict throughout your organization.”


How to build ethics

October 24, 2016

Via projectmanagement.com   Article

How to Build Ethics into Your Team Culture

“… leaders need to ‘walk the talk’ by engaging in ethical behavior. They need to create a strong ethical culture in their teams by providing the tools needed to help team members behave ethically, on a reinforced basis.

Some tools to inject ethics into the team culture include:
  1. Positive reinforcement, such as praising people for notifying you of a mistake they have made.
  2. Encouragement of open reporting of ‘bad news’ in any form.
  3. Establishment of systems that strongly encourage ethical behaviors, such as refusing to allow derogatory remarks in any form (jokes included). This would require backing by formal systems, such as clearly defined and protected ‘whistle blower’ procedures.
Once created, an ethical culture in your team can be expected to have a strong effect sideways and downward within the organization — and outward to the wider stakeholder community.”

Managing up

October 24, 2016

By Dave Gerhardt / Medium via motto.time.com   Article

The Art and Importance of Managing Up

“Want to be put on the fast track for a promotion? Or become one of the top performers on your team? Well then there’s one skill that you need to perfect that has absolutely nothing to do with how good you are at your day-to-day job. It’s a little skill called managing up.

Now, managing up doesn’t mean that you’re trying to jump over your boss or step on anyone’s toes. But it means that you’re managing your manager. You’re putting them in a position where they can help you do your job better (which in turn, will help them).

Here’s how it works.

You probably have a weekly 1:1 with your boss. Or maybe every now and then you have a skip-level (meeting with your bosses boss). How does that meeting typically go? If that 30 minute meeting isn’t packed with notes, ideas and a longer to-do list than you had before the meeting started, then you’re doing it wrong. … One of the things no one ever tells you early on in your career is that you actually need to drive that meeting. …

It’s on you to set the agenda for this meeting. You don’t need to have a formal agenda in advance, but I like to at least keep a notebook of talking points. … Here’s why keeping that list is so important.

How many times have one of these two things happened at work:

  1. Your boss forwards you an email and asks you to look into something and you have no idea what they want.
  2. You’re working on something but you feel lost, aren’t sure if you’re making the right decision, or even just stuck starting a blank screen for something you were supposed to write.

… Look into it, do your research, and make it a point for discussion at your next 1:1. … Write down your thoughts/questions/potential options that factor into the decision, and make it a point for discussion at your next 1:1. … this is a great time to talk about results and hammer home the things you’ve accomplished lately. …

Treat your 1:1 with your boss as the most important meeting you’re going to have that week. … Managing up will not only help you run better meetings, but it will help you remove roadblocks, do your job even better, and put you on the path for that next big step in your career.”