Categories ArchivesMiddle Manager

How to make better decisions standard

In these crazy-busy times, it is easy to develop a knee-jerk approach to decision-making. So what can you do to make it easier to 'hop in the helicopter' to gain a more informative perspective?  Hop in the helicopter 'Hopping in the helicopter' means getting above the noise and busyness to gain a clearer understanding of an issue. Being in the helicopter enables you to see things you couldn't when in the thick of things.  From the helicopter you can see patterns, opportunities and even the significance of the issue. So how can you make it easier to hop in the helicopter? Track your KPIs over time Assessing a single measure in time gives no indication of the direction it is taking. It is essential ...

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Avoid this common KPI mistake standard

We see it over and over again.  Managers using a single KPI to assess performance and decide how to improve it.  So why is this wrong and what should be done instead? KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) are an essential tool to help managers make decisions to improve performance.  But unfortunately some managers are using KPIs incorrectly, so let's explore how KPIs work and how to use them. A KPI should never, ever be used on its own, as it tells us very little Avoid this number one mistake! When using KPIs, always use a balanced range of measures that you believe relate to the end result you want.  Then you will have information on the impact different activities have on your end result. Always us a range ...

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The power of a Chocolate Fish standard

How to make discussing performance easier John Petry, a participant on one of our training courses, gave us this great idea and has generously allowed us to pass it on ever since. Every Friday, John gives out the 'Chocolate Fish Award' A chocolate fish is given for the most outstanding act by an employee during the week. Outstandingly good, or outstandingly bad. The Chocolate Fish Award is usually fun and has some serious benefits, it: recognises achievement regularly and positively makes it OK to acknowledge mistakes, and encourages "what to do next time?" thinking provides staff with a neutral name and way to discuss performance - “oh you must be aiming for this week's chocolate fish" Or "what a doozey! That will be this week's winner for ...

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What is strategy? standard

There is a lot of hoo-ha around 'strategy'. But is strategy really that complex to understand? Simply put, 'strategy' is how, in general, you intend to achieve your goals.  As there are many ways you could achieve your goals, it is important to clarify how you specifically plan to achieve your goals.  That is, what will your strategy be? Defining your 'how' facilitates engagement, efficiency and differentiation from your competitors. Strategy is HOW, in general, you intend to achieve your goals. Strategy requires deciding what you will and won't do "Business strategy is the creation of a unique and valuable position, involving a different set of activities."   (Michael E. Porter) In business, your strategy defines how you uniquely intend to achieve your goals which differentiates you from your competitors. To have clear strategies ...

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