Randy Bennett

36 Flips | 1 Magazine | 6 Likes | 6 Following | @rxbennett | Keep up with Randy Bennett on Flipboard, a place to see the stories, photos, and updates that matter to you. Flipboard creates a personalized magazine full of everything, from world news to life’s great moments. Download Flipboard for free and search for “Randy Bennett”

Small Talk Is an Overrated Way to Build Relationships with Your Employees

The relationships that you form with each of your direct reports are central to your ability to fulfill your three core responsibilities as a manager: Create a culture of feedback, build a cohesive team, and achieve results collaboratively. But these relationships do not follow the rules of other …

Your Customers Still Want to Talk to a Human Being

The rise of the internet has opened up new possibilities for communicating, from emailing and blogging to mobile video chatting and exchanging GIFs over messaging apps. This digitization has not been limited to consumer interactions. Most businesses now communicate with their customers through …

Customer Experience

Become a Better Listener by Taking Notes

Team dynamics can make or break a meeting. Have you ever been in a meeting where people interrupt each other, introduce new ideas when they should be building on the conversation, and repeat someone else’s point just to be heard? These communication issues waste time and energy, and usually lead to …

A 4-Step Process to Help Senior Teams Prioritize Decisions

Leaders and their teams often pride themselves on their ability to deal with an onslaught of decisions. But the reality is they often end up making rapid-fire calls on issues big and small and wasting their time. They and their organizations would be better served by an approach that treats …

Collaboration Overload Is a Symptom of a Deeper Organizational Problem

Many leaders are now aware of the dangers of collaboration overload and collaboration-tool overload in the workplace. The evidence continues to mount that, for many organizations, the costs associated with meetings, emails, IMs and other forms of workforce collaboration now exceed the benefits.<p>But …

Is Your Company as Ethical as It Seems?

Picture this. You are the newly promoted vice president of business development at an oil company. Your first assignment is to land an oil field services contract abroad. The process is arduous, negotiations are tough, and you’re working against a tight deadline. When you submit a tender to the …

Why the Millions We Spend on Employee Engagement Buy Us So Little

Organizations are spending hundreds of millions of dollars on employee engagement programs, yet their scores on engagement surveys remain abysmally low. How is that possible? Because most initiatives amount to an adrenaline shot. A perk is introduced to boost scores, but over time the effect wears …

The Right Way to Fight

Differences of opinion at work are inevitable and often integral to innovation, problem-solving, and performance improvement. But knowing that most clashes have benefits does not make them any easier to manage. Disagreements with coworkers can be uncomfortable, and if handled poorly, result in …

Great Companies Obsess Over Productivity, Not Efficiency

Business leaders often think of “efficiency” and “productivity” as synonyms, two sides of the same coin.<p>When it comes to strategy, however, efficiency and productivity are very different. At a time when so many companies are starved for growth, senior leaders must bring a productivity mindset to …

The Right Way to Start a Meeting

We all know there’s a price to pay for a making bad first impression: A limp handshake conveys low confidence; a wrinkled suit makes you seem lazy; oversharing comes across as emotional instability. But do you ever think about the first impression your meetings make? Frequently restarting meetings …

How America Gave Up on Change

In his last book, economist Tyler Cowen wrote about how machine intelligence could change the world. In his new book, <i>The Complacent Class</i>, he writes about the forces that prevent change from happening. In particular, he argues that America has become more averse to change in recent decades, and …

4 Ways CEOs Can Conquer Short-Termism

In a recent survey, 70% of respondents said that CEOs focus too much on short-term financial results, and nearly 60% said that they don’t focus enough on positive long-term impact. These findings mirror the growing chorus of voices in business and academia that point to short-termism as being a …

To Achieve a Major Goal, First Tackle a Few Small Ones

One of the difficulties with achieving great things is knowing how to get there. Every book you read was written by someone who completed a book. Every concert you attend involves musicians who can play well enough to be onstage. You can see the final product, but you can’t see all of the steps …

Enabling seamless lifelong learning journeys--the next frontier of digital education

In emerging markets, the digital transformation of education is gaining traction, and all stakeholders can benefit if they seize new opportunities …

Call Length Is the Worst Way to Measure Customer Service

Practitioners and pundits alike have long debated which metric is best for assessing the performance of a service organization. Is the silver bullet customer satisfaction, net promoter score, customer effort score, or some other measure? While this debate is unlikely to be settled anytime soon, …

The “Jobs to be Done” Theory of Innovation

<b>Clayton Christensen,</b> professor at Harvard Business School, builds upon the theory of disruptive innovation for which he is well-known. He speaks about his new book examining how successful companies know how to grow.<p>Download this podcast<p>SARAH GREEN CARMICHAEL: Welcome to the HBR IdeaCast from …

“Poor Communication” Is Often a Symptom of a Different Problem

Do employees complain that your company suffers from a lack of communication? That the left hand doesn’t know what the right hand is doing? Maybe the one doing the complaining is you. Or perhaps, as many companies do, you conducted an employee engagement survey and “lack of communication” emerged …

How to Handle Interrupting Colleagues

You’re giving a presentation on the company’s strategic direction when one of your colleagues interrupts you. You pause, address his question, and continue with your point — until he interrupts again. Sound familiar?<p>All of us have known colleagues, friends, or romantic partners who seem unable to …

Adopting a Founder’s Mindset: Leading like an Owner | Leading from the Library

It’s good when library leaders talk about having a start-up mentality or entrepreneurial spirit. One thing is missing though: Ownership. These …

Emotional Intelligence Has 12 Elements. Which Do You Need to Work On?

Esther is a well-liked manager of a small team. Kind and respectful, she is sensitive to the needs of others. She is a problem solver; she tends to see setbacks as opportunities. She’s always engaged and is a source of calm to her colleagues. Her manager feels lucky to have such an easy direct …

Exploding myths about the gig economy

A survey of 8,000 respondents in the US, UK, Germany, Sweden, France and Spain find existing statistics severely underestimate the size of the gig …

Why Sports Are a Terrible Metaphor for Business

Here in the United States, we’re just days away from Super Bowl Sunday. The buzz around the biggest game in America’s biggest sport is, as always, about more than football. It’s also about business and leadership. Does the Patriots’s consistent excellence over the last 15 years offer insights on …

8 Ways to Read (a Lot) More Books This Year

How much do you read?<p>For most of my adult life I read maybe five books a year — if I was lucky. I’d read a couple on vacation and I’d always have a few slow burners hanging around the bedside table for months.<p>And then last year I surprised myself by reading 50 books. This year I’m on pace for 100. …

One Communication Tool You Should Add to Your Toolkit

Want to provide better feedback, introduce people, or master small talk? Try this technique.<p>How many different communication actions do you engage in …

A Simple Yet Powerful Way to Handle a Stress Episode

I’m sitting behind a long table, flanked by a marketing manager on my right and an entrepreneur on my left. We are an admission jury at an elite French business school. The candidate seated before us has spent the last two years toiling in a high-pressure preparatory school to get ready for this …

How to Prioritize Your Work When Your Manager Doesn’t

Prioritizing work can be frustrating, especially if you work for a hands-off manager or a company that doesn’t give you clear goals. Most of us face this reality each and every day. The frequently cited research of Robert Kaplan and David Norton shows that more than 90% of employees don’t fully …

If you want to get smarter, speed-reading is worse than not reading at all

We all know that reading is important. But we’re also busy. So we try to optimize by reading more quickly. And in this way, we miss the point of reading entirely.<p>I’ve noticed this tendency since I began posting about what I learn from reading over 100 books a year. One of the most frequent …

Measuring B2B’s digital gap

B2B companies fall short of their B2C counterparts in key areas of our Digital Quotient assessment.<p><b>The need to invest</b> operations and processes with …

How Rudeness Stops People from Working Together

Incivility can fracture a team, destroying collaboration, splintering members’ sense of psychological safety, and hampering team effectiveness. Belittling and demeaning comments, insults, backbiting, and other rude behavior can deflate confidence, sink trust, and erode helpfulness — even for those …

The Workplace

When Giving Critical Feedback, Focus on Your Nonverbal Cues

Giving feedback may be one of the most difficult challenges a manager faces. On the one hand, you have to be honest; on the other hand, you don’t want to alienate your employee. You tread a fine line between maintaining cordiality and successfully getting your point across.<p>A positive workplace …