Curiosity: One of the attributes of strong leaders is curiosity. But curiosity takes much work. And brain work takes energy—science tells us that the human brain consumes about 20% of our total body energy budget. That’s why another common trait for solid leaders is keeping themselves in good physical condition. They pay attention to their mental and physical health through …
Organizational Clarity: A couple of weeks ago, a client and I discussed some of the issues he had with his peers. He couldn’t understand why they didn’t go ahead and do the work when he assigned them a task. “Why,” my client asked, “won’t they do the work?” His manager asked him the same question he had just asked me.
When our children were young (it seems like yesterday!), we would often sing nursery rhymes while traveling in the car. One of them was, “There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed A Fly.” I won’t go through all the verses (if you’re interested, you can watch it on YouTube here: https://wordsforlife.org.uk/activities/there-was-old-lady/), suffice it to say that this mythical old lady somehow swallowed a fly, “I don’t know why she swallowed a fly—Perhaps she’ll die.” And then, to solve the fly problem, she, in turn, swallowed a spider, bird, cat, dog, cow, and finally, a horse. She died, of course.
Several years ago, I read a few articles about MMT. Those articles gave me enough of an understanding that I stopped worrying about the U.S. national debt. When I attempted to explain to others why the deficit itself isn’t a problem, they responded with skepticism. I decided to educate myself further and, coincidentally, my son recommended this book as a beginning to understanding MMT at a deeper level.
Business Model Canvas:
When I searched for “Business Model Canvas,” Google returned about 120 million links. A quick perusal of the results shows that there are many different kinds of business models and ways of outlining those models. One block in common in these different canvasses is the “Key Activities” block. Most of the other blocks are support or enablers of those activities.
What? Me Worry? There is much discussion on how change is accelerating and how dangerous the big tech companies have gotten. I do not believe big is terrible by itself. Neither do I think that big means impervious to change or disruption. So while I’m not particularly worried, I also believe we would do well to restructure a couple of these behemoths.
Consumers frequently benefit from the economies of scale large corporations gain. In some cases, the gains in pricing, innovation, and delivery may far outweigh any perceived negatives from a corporation growing large. Properly governed large companies can be a win for everyone.
So what happens when the pandemic-storm is over? Presently, we are in a tight job market, especially in the hospitality and travel industries. Our employees are reluctant to change jobs now, even if they are not particularly happy.
In a recent podcast, Mike Robbins spoke of the need for leaders to think about employee morale. I think of morale as being another word for culture. Changing culture is one of the most challenging change-management tasks a leader has to tackle. Seemingly overnight, perhaps literally overnight, leaders have had to move workers to remote working cultures.
A colleague sent me a link to a presentation by Mike Robbins, a mentor, and coach. When I finally made time to view it, I understood why she enjoyed it and recommended it. Mike had several twists on how to lead during change. Of course, he had a lot to work with because of the pandemic.
The Elephant: I guess that most of you know the story that describes how a fully-grown elephant is kept in place by a relatively small spike in the ground. Simply stated, an elephant baby is steaked to the ground with a substantial stake, chain, and ankle cuff. The baby elephant isn’t able to pull the steak up or break the chain, and after wearing itself out by trying, it learns that it is useless to tug at the restraint. An adult elephant could easily pull that steak out of the ground or break the chain—without even trying. But the elephant remembers the lesson, so when the chain gets taught, the elephant stops tugging. Having a memory like an elephant isn’t always a useful thing!