Nichols

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3 Things Managers Should Be Doing Every Day

“When are we supposed to do all <i>that</i>?” That’s the question we constantly get from new managers, only weeks or months into their new positions, when we describe the three key activities they should be focusing on to be successful as leaders: building trust, building a team, and building a broader …

Proven Ways to Earn Your Employees’ Trust

Trust is often talked about as the bedrock of a company’s success. Most people think about the issue in terms of customers: They have to believe in you and your products and services. But trust within the organization is just as important: Your employees must believe in each other. When they don’t, …

The Defining Elements of a Winning Culture

A company’s culture can have a powerful impact on its performance. Culture is the glue that binds an organization together and it’s the hardest thing for competitors to copy. As a result, it can be a lasting source of competitive advantage. Take these examples: <b></b><p><i>Kent Thiry builds a values-focused</i> …

If You Want Innovation, You Have to Invest in People

As the convergence of digital technologies drives unprecedented levels of change in global marketplaces, it is very much a reality that a company must, as Bill Gates put it, “innovate or die!” In therace for relevance to future customers, the greater a company’s innovation capacity, the greater its …

Go Ahead: Ask Your Employees If They’re Happy

When was the last time you made the effort to see, <i>really</i> see, what the people you work with are thinking and how they’re feeling about their jobs? With Gallup’s latest State of the American Workplace survey showing that 70% of U.S. employees are not engaged at work, it seems that the majority of …

Nice or Tough: Which Approach Engages Employees Most?

It’s probably no news to most people who work that poor leaders produce disgruntled, unengaged employees. Our research also shows convincingly that great leaders do the opposite — that is, that they produce highly committed, engaged, and productive employees.<p>And the difference is cavernous — in a …

Make Time for the Work That Matters

More hours in the day. It’s one thing everyone wants, and yet it’s impossible to attain. But what if you could free up significant time—maybe as much as 20% of your workday—to focus on the responsibilities that really matter?<p>We’ve spent the past three years studying how knowledge workers can become …

Change Management Needs to Change

As a recognized discipline, change management has been in existence for over half a century. Yet despite the huge investment that companies have made in tools, training, and thousands of books (over 83,000 on Amazon), most studies still show a 60-70% failure rate for organizational change projects …

To Move Ahead You Have to Know What to Leave Behind

Decisions are the most fundamental building blocks of successful change in our organizations, our teams, and our careers. The faster and more strategically we stack those blocks, the faster and more successfully we achieve change. Yet, change efforts often stall precisely because those decisions …

How to Reward Your Stellar Team

You’ve been told that getting the most from your team depends on rewarding and recognizing them collectively. But it’s tough to do that, especially when most management systems are so focused on individual performance, undermining the very teamwork you’re hoping to encourage. Luckily, you don’t …

Three Differences Between Managers and Leaders

A young manager accosted me the other day. “I’ve been reading all about leadership, have implemented several ideas, and think I’m doing a good job at leading my team. How will I know when I’ve crossed over from being a manager to a leader?” he wanted to know.<p>I didn’t have a ready answer and it’s a …

Working from Home: A Work in Progress

It’s now been about six weeks since all Yahoo! employees had to start showing up at the Internet giant’s offices every day. The company-confidential but widely circulated memo that banned telecommuting stressed the importance of physical proximity for preserving the creative culture that new CEO …

Three Qualities Every Leader Needs to Succeed on a Team

“I want your help developing my direct reports into stronger leaders,” John* the new CEO of Fasseni, a $350 million technology company, told me several years ago.<p>Initially, I approached the request like any consultant might.<p>First, I asked John why he wanted my help. He told me that Fasseni had …

How to Fix the Bad Employee Syndrome

We’ve all wanted to please the boss. And if that sometimes means that we do something we think is stupid or misguided so be it — is it worth spending our social or political capital on making a fuss about just one small thing? Better to shrug and accept it and maybe build up some goodwill for when …

Disengaged Employees? Do Something About It

New data on employee engagement is in, and it’s downright discouraging. As this post by HBR’s Gretchen Gavett noted, Gallup’s research shows that engagement among US workers is holding steady at a scant 30%. This means seven out of ten people are either “checked out”, or actively hostile toward …

Six Fundamentals Every Entrepreneur Needs to Succeed

As an entrepreneur who founded and runs a successful and growing business, Getaroom, I see many entrepreneurs with great ideas but no clue how the business will be profitable. For certain websites or apps, if the idea is good enough you can get lucky and sell the business after you get a spike in …

Three Rules to Make Your Company Exceptional

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Rethinking the Work of Leadership

In 1973, Peter Drucker stated in his book Management: Tasks, Responsibilities, Practices, “Management is not culture-free, that is, part of the world of nature. It is a social function. It is, therefore, both socially accountable and culturally embedded.”<p>Some thirteen years later, Tom Peters …

Harvard Biz Review on Twitter: "The most effective change agents understand and mobilize their informal networks. http://t.co/j3WoIMEg42 http://t.co/es0qNxMqZ8"

How and Why to Be a Leader (Not a Wannabe)

We need a new generation of leaders. And we need it now.<p>We’re in the midst of a Great Dereliction — a historic failure of leadership, precisely when we need it most. Hence it’s difficult, looking around, to even remember what leadership is. We’re surrounded by people who are expert at winning — …

70% Of Companies Fail When They Try To Change

<i>Studies put the failure rate of organizational change at 70% or higher. Yet, managers face increasing pressure to implement change to meet short- and long-term goals. Gregory P. Shea and Cassie A. Solomon share their approach to dealing with this challenge in</i> Leading Successful Change: 8 Keys to …

Leadership

Employee Engagement Does More than Boost Productivity

Improving employee engagement is not simply about improving productivity — although organizations with a high level of engagement do report 22% higher productivity, according to a new meta-analysis of 1.4 million employees conducted by the Gallup Organization.<p>In addition, strong employee engagement …

What Inspiring Leaders Do

What do top executives want from their leaders? IBM recently asked this question of 1,700 CEOs in 64 countries. The three leadership traits that most mattered were the ability to focus intensely on customer needs, the ability to collaborate with colleagues — and the ability to inspire.<p>Our own …

Practical Tips for Overcoming Resistance

<i>Although many managers and leaders are under pressure to get things done quickly, pressuring subordinates frequently leads to resistance. This is not due to stubbornness as much as it is due those subordinates simply feeling overwhelmed by the volume of work they have. Emotions also come into play;</i> …

How Smart People Collaborate for Success

Solo performers can shine, but working together can yield greater results. Here are seven tips for improving collaboration.<p>Most experts agree that collaboration in business consistently provides greater accomplishment. When it works, the combined brainpower of intelligent people can solve complex …

Management

3 Types of Employees Who Always Resist Change

Got innovation-phobic team members? Use this handy guide to classify and overcome their objections.<p>In business, just about everybody claims to be for creativity and finding new and better ways to do business. Not only does innovation sound exciting, it also sounds profitable. But studies have …

EXCITING

Reinvent Your Company Through Culture

In both C suites and boardrooms, discussions about business performance usually center on topics like market momentum, M&A opportunities, capital management, and productivity enhancements. While these factors are important, in my experience they are best leveraged when employees are engaged, …

Give Your Performance Management System a Review

Nearly every mid to large size company in the world now has some kind of performance management system, a process that in theory should help people set to achieve goals and ultimately drive performance. Yet only 14% of organizations are actually happy with their performance management system as it …