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Leadership 2030In Leadership 2030, Georg Vielmetter and Yvonne Sell provide a road map of the broad trends that are reshaping markets, cultures, and companies. Based on research with the Hay Group, a global management consultancy, they offer insights into six megatrends: the shift of economic power to Asia, the escalating war for talent, environmental crisis, eroding customer and employee loyalty, the melding of private and working lives, and technological convergence. The authors show how these self-reinforcing trends demand enlightened leadership with the skills to engage an ever-widening circle of stakeholders. Gone are the days of the egocentric, alpha-male leadership. To survive the megatrend storm leaders will have to provide workers with greater autonomy while finding ways to respond to the unique needs of every customer.

Six big changes are afoot that will reshape the demands of leadership going forward:

  1. Globalization in the future will be more about power shifting to Asia than it has been in the past. The growing middle class in many developing nations will create new opportunities, but also challenges as multinationals try to serve highly localized markets.
  2. Climate change will drive resource scarcity, forcing leaders to fundamentally rethink their operations.
  3. Rising affluence will drive demand for customized products. Just as consumers seek out more individualized experiences, so too will employees whose work need not be restricted by time and place.
  4. The digital era will shift power to consumers and workers, away from traditional management structures. Already, the digital world is blurring the line between personal and professional lives, while increasing organizational transparency.
  5. The aging population will shrink the workforce and require leaders to cope with intergenerational workplaces.
  6. Several cutting-edge technologies will converge to open new markets. Nanotechnology and biotechnology especially will challenge leadership to invest in R&D programs and to respond effectively to societal worries.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Leaders Make the Future, Leading from the Emerging Future, The Work of Leaders

 

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94776685Peter Drucker is often considered to be the “father of modern management.” For decades, the great business thinker produced dozens of books, articles, and lectures providing groundbreaking insight on leadership and organizational success. In The Practical Drucker, William H. Cohen distills the wisdom from the vast body of Drucker’s work into 40 succinct truths. Cohen provides readers with the necessary guidelines and examples to use these 40 truths to solve people, management, marketing, innovation, and organizational problems.

Peter Drucker’s work has played an essential role in shaping modern management. While many leaders wish to integrate more of Drucker’s wisdom into their performances, it is difficult to know where to start. William H. Cohen extracted the following practical touch-points from Drucker’s extensive work:

  • The responsibility of a leader is to protect and inspire others. Drucker believed that it was a leader’s ethical duty to keep others from harm and that an organization’s success comes from a leader’s ability to inspire and encourage employees.
  • People have no limits. Drucker felt that all people have the potential for success as long as they work hard at developing themselves.
  • Avoid doing what generated success in the past to achieve success in the future. When organizations hold on to the old products and business tactics that once made them successful, they are unable to evolve with the changing times, and will eventually fail.
  • Good management requires leaders to take problems head on. Whether it is office politics or a pending organization-wide crisis, Drucker recommended that managers identify every problem they are faced with and take positive action immediately.
  • Only irrational marketers believe there are irrational customers. Drucker argued that marketers who label their customers as “irrational” because of their purchasing decisions do not understand what their customers value.
  • Some of the best innovation comes from “unexpected” circumstances. Drucker believed that strange events and trends were some of the best places for organizations to find innovation opportunities.
  • The purpose of a business is not to make a profit. Too many organizations focus on profit when they should be focusing on the true purpose of the business, which Drucker argued was to create customers.
  • The two most important organizational functions are marketing and innovation. Organizations must always be creating new products that customers actually want to buy.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: The Work of Leaders, The Crucibles of LeadershipWhy Should Anyone Be Led by You?

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In Reinventing Management, Julian Birkinshaw offers alternative counterpoints to replace the traditional ways people approach management and business. Arguing that management “failed” after years of corruption and employee disenchantment, Birkinshaw presents compelling arguments for how management can be improved and updated for a new era of business. With a fresh perspective on management issues, such as communication, coordination, setting objectives, and motivating employees, Birkinshaw offers decision makers and corporate influencers an actionable guide for reinventing and reinvigorating management at companies both large and small.

Birkinshaw offers readers the following advice:

  • Management is defined as the act of getting people together in order to accomplish certain goals and objectives. However, that definition has become corrupted over the years, narrowing the scope of what management should be.
  • An enduring source of competitive advantage for companies is a novel business model. In addition, a novel management model can also keep a company strong.
  • The traditional way for coordinating work in a large company is bureaucracy, which is a more formalized structure. Alternatively, a company can use emergence to coordinate work. Emergence is spontaneous, and work is accomplished by parties working together as a matter of self-interest.
  • The traditional path for making and communicating decisions in a large organization is via hierarchy. The alternative path is collective wisdom, where aggregated expertise is valued more highly than the advice of one leader.
  • The traditional principle for goal setting in large companies is alignment, where all employees work toward a common goal. The alternative is obliquity, the idea that goals are best achieved when worked toward indirectly.
  • Traditionally, extrinsic motivators like money or threat of punishment were used to incentivize workers. The better alternative is intrinsic motivation, by which employers motivate workers with rewards that are inherent to the task itself.
  • There are four main models of management: Discovery, Planning, Quest, and Science. Selecting the right model is important for managers looking to improve their organizations.
  • Management model innovation is usually driven by three sets of people. These are mid-level change agents, top-level executives, and external partners, such as academics or consultants.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: Full Engagement!Bare Knuckle People ManagementManaging for People Who Hate Managing

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Making Extraordinary Things Happen in AsiaMaking Extraordinary Things Happen in Asia showcases how The Five Practices of Exemplary Leadership formulated from research conducted by James M. Kouzes and Barry Z. Posner are being applied by Asian executives to transform how people work to generate great results. Real-life stories are shared about personal leadership practices from senior managers, many enrolled in the Executive MBA program at the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. The emphasis is on how leaders set inspiring examples through their own behaviors and relationships with colleagues, employees, team members, and other constituents. The five exemplary practices are modeling the way with clear values, inspiring others with a shared vision, continually challenging existing processes to discover new opportunities, empowering others to act, and encouraging the heart through genuine appreciation of the work of others.

The authors inform readers that:

  • Each individual can be a leader and make a difference by modeling exemplary behavior based on values and developing strong relationships with constituents within an organization in order to make things happen.
  • Leadership can be learned because it manifests as an observable pattern of practices and behaviors and a definite set of skills and abilities.
  • The five practices of exemplary leadership are modeling the way, inspiring a shared vision, challenging existing processes, enabling others to act, and encouraging the heart.
  • Lead by the example of exemplary behaviors to show deep commitment to shared values.
  • Commitment from others cannot be forced through command but must come from inspiring others to enlist in a common vision.
  • Exemplary leaders search for opportunities to innovate, grow, and improve; they continually learn from failures and successes.
  • Leaders must foster collaboration and build trust by strengthening others. When people have the information, discretion, and authority to make extraordinary things happen, they will.
  • Exemplary leaders demonstrate genuine appreciation for individual excellence and seek to create a culture that celebrates values and victories.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: The New Asian Hemisphere, China’s Management Revolution, China Versus the West

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86407323Today’s economy, with its insatiable need for great ideas and effective implementation, does not reward stifling environments and underdeveloped staffs. Instead, it demands smart work at full throttle. To unleash productive power, organizations look to their leaders. Global competitors and the advancement of new technologies require leaders to be constantly in motion as they lead their organizations to success by creating cultures of transformation. In Leaders in Motion, Dr. Marta Wilson offers her proven method for unleashing the full potential of every organization by helping leaders tap their potential to create and motivate cultures of transformation and achievement.

Wilson offers the following advice to leaders wishing to spur cultural change in their companies:

  • The race to win organizational health, wealth, and creative power begins with personal mastery, and the journey toward personal mastery begins with a commitment to integrity.
  • Organizational transformation is based on personal transformation.
  • The starting point for authentic organizational transformation is the leader, who must be committed to personal transformation.
  • To master their enterprises and the interpersonal connections within them, leaders must first master themselves.
  • Transformation requires personal mastery built on authenticity, integrity, consciousness, and willingness to embrace change.
  • Learning how to practice new reactions is an essential element of transformation.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: People Follow You, Positive Leadership, Corporate Culture

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In Great Leaders Grow, best-selling business author Ken Blanchard teams with Chick-fil-A vice president Mark Miller to guide executives on the path to becoming great leaders. The authors assert that while personal growth is the key to staying on that path, it is also the reason so many leaders fail to be effective in the long term. Great Leaders Grow helps leaders not only understand why they need to grow, but also offers practical advice for making this growth happen. Through the story of Blake Brown, a young man embarking on his first job, Blanchard and Miller illustrate what it takes to grow as a leader and how it affects everyday decisions.

To download three free summaries, please visit our site.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a LeaderThe Well-Balanced LeaderThe Self-Aware Leader

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The news of the Democratic walk out in Wisconsin and the possibility of a government shut down in the near future emphasize the need for responsible leadership now more than ever. As politics become more extreme, it is not a matter of who is right or wrong, but whether or not our leaders can act responsibly and be held accountable for carrying out the functions of their position.

In corporate life as in politics, leaders must be willing to fight for what they believe is right, but also have the courage to face challenges head on. There will always be opposition for any leader when working toward a vision or goal, but that opposition is necessary for pushing the leader to be his or her best. Individuals become stronger by having to surmount obstacles. Running away only delays the inevitable confrontation and weakens a person’s character.

When a leader is hired or appointed, his or her followers have expectations concerning what their leader will accomplish. Leaders must do their best to come through on these expectations, but must work within the system they find themselves. When hired or appointed, leaders recognize and agree to the rules and terms of their position; they should fight for what they believe is right, but respect the responsibilities that come with the job. If victory is not possible, leaders must accept defeat graciously and hope the opposition will do the same in the future.

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With Thanksgiving leftovers still in the refrigerator and the Holiday season in full swing, it’s an important time for all of us to recognize what is important in our lives. Much of leadership training involves prioritizing work and managing time in an effort to become more efficient, but now more than ever, a good work/life balance is essential for a healthy and productive workforce.

Many companies have started offering benefits such as flextime and telecommuting to help workers reach a balance between their personal and professional lives, but this may not be enough in many cases. According to Jennifer Lacy, director of research for The New York Times Job Market, “There is a general perception among employees that working long hours is important for career advancement…This notion, and the pay and promotion policies that support it, often undermines attempts to promote work/life balance.”

For corporate work/life initiatives to succeed, they must be supported from the top. Culture is one of the largest driving forces in any initiative, but the recession has put even more pressure on those wishing to take advantage of work/life benefits because they are afraid of being viewed as not dedicated to the company. However, if companies can launch successful work/life programs, they can reap rewards that include less absenteeism, lower burn-out rates, and a more productive workforce.

So, while enjoying those leftovers and planning the family festivities this season, leaders and managers should also be thinking about how to best serve both work and family all year round.

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The quality of leadership can determine whether a company succeeds or fails. But how do the best leaders lead? In How the Best Leaders Lead, author Brian Tracy describes lessons he has learned about leadership during his years of working as a consultant and trainer with more than 1,000 companies. He suggests that leadership is not a position, but goal-oriented action that involves careful planning and analysis, and includes qualities and skills which may be learned and honed through practice.

For a free trial of EBSCO Business Book Summaries click here.

Related book summaries in the BBS library: The Art of Followership, Leadership Gold, Love Leadership

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Leadership in the Era of Economic Uncertainty by Ram Charan is a common-sense guide outlining the management practices necessary to weather the current economic storm. Throughout the book Charan explains how to manage for cash and make tough decisions at every level of the business, from the CEO down to customer service. With the right strategies, and a little luck, an overwhelming challenge can become an incredible opportunity.

For a free trial of EBSCO Business Book Summaries click here.

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