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Archive for December, 2011

You might need a shark in your fish tank

I thoroughly recommend that you visit the website of Darren Robson and follow his tweets @darrenrobson

Darren has aptly chosen for himself the image of the shark and he tells the story why on his website.

We met up again today and I am very inspired by the philanthropic work he is doing.   We have known each other for some years and I continue to be stimulated by his creative and imaginative ways of improving people’s lives both in business and those who are less fortunate than ourselves.

The question is are you prepared to be challenging and two initiate different ways of thinking?  As Einstein intimated we will not solve our current problems at the same level of thinking where we first created them.

If you are prepared to be challenged and to learn how to challenge yourself then think about bringing Darren Robson into your organisation.

warm regards Jonathan

Will More Rule & Regulations Offset an Absence of Trust?

When trust has gone, all hell breaks loose. I have walked into Executive Boardrooms where the CEO has inherited or created a “trust free zone”. They are very toxic places. Talented leaders choose not to stay there long. Would you?

You may wonder: “What are these teams like?”
Here are some of my observations:

1. The barbarians are at the gates and all sorts of unhealthy behaviours are overlooked.
2. It’s a game of “where egos dare”
3. There are meetings before and after the main meeting, because no one trusts that decisions will get made or supported in practice.
4. There are constant feuds between the various Robber Barons and their fiefdoms.
5. There is little integrity or moral courage

So in such environments some leaders mistakenly add more rules regulations and processes.
Countries even do the same (look at the FSA) but that doesn’t mitigate for the lack of trust.

That takes inspiring leadership and moral integrity.

Good luck
Warm regards Jonathan

How You Can Get Sacked #3

Disdain and arrogance are business relationship killers. Without relationships you are very isolated and more vulnerable to being “taken out” when the swinging axe of cut-backs comes suddenly.

One business leader told me this weekend of yet another round of redundancies he is responsible for implementing. His large global firm wanted a further cut of 20% of his team of 220 talented people. This was the third cut in 8 months. The firm had indicated that the first cut was likely to be the only one.

He had got rid of his bottom 10% (“the fat”) in that round. Then they asked him to cut into muscle, now on the third round it was cutting into the bone.

He didn’t know how he was going to do it. He had previously done the usual round of looking at annual performance reviews and removing the low performers. Next the medium performers. Did he really want just a small team of the high performers with high expectations and demands? They weren’t always the team players, but too self absorbed.

He was going to have a large tumbler of whiskey and then do 1, 2, 3, sack, 1, 2, 3, sack ……
These are emotional decisions based on whether he liked them or not, since he couldn’t differentiate on technical ability. Right or wrong, it is how our brains differentiate.

In conclusion be competent at your job and avoid arrogance or disdain – they are often a screen for social inadequacy and under confidence and draw fire from others at critical moments of selection.

Good luck
Warm regards
Jonathan