Build Organizational Resilience By Stopping Inequality

“The more you understand the human condition, the better you are as a business person. Human depth makes business sense.”   – Peter Koestenbaum It has been a rough couple of months.  Tough enough that we are finally starting conversations about how to build resilience. Tough enough to warrant organizations asking that question, and individuals…

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A Foundation For Resilience This is the Spit Bank Lighthouse. It doesn’t look like much, but this structure has stood in the middle of Ireland’s Cork Harbour since 1853 and there is an awful lot we can learn from it as we recover from a pandemic. In 1833, the lighthouse was but a dream in…

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As the debate on when to ease restrictions wages on and we all get tired of hearing about this ‘new normal’ we can’t seem to define, many leaders are struggling with a lack of things they can control about their organization and team’s future. I hear, ‘we just don’t know’ from clients multiple times a…

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There’s no question, for most of us, these have been some tough weeks. For some, the impact has been minimal. Maybe you’re adjusting to working from home and dealing with the challenge of moving meetings around and trying to do things virtually. For others, the stress of quarantine, impacts on family members, and economic hits…

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Leading through disruption is tough. If you’re currently in that situation, there’s no easy way to get through it. It’s even more difficult if people are not on the same page, working in different spaces, dealing with their own family challenges related to the crisis, and you’ve got to ‘herd the cats’ to make something…

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Have you ever been driving a car headed towards your new home, having recently moved, only to find yourself suddenly turning down the familiar street towards your old home? How did that happen? I’ll tell you how. You were so busy thinking about something else – your conscious mind was so “off-line” – that your…

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Building A Capability Model

Do You Really Need A Competency Model? I’ve had a lot of conversations about competency models and I’ve built a lot of them but frankly, I’m not sure I have seen the value-add. When I asked our clients why they are considering investing the time to build a competency model, here are the responses I…

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Can Resilience Be Learned?

Today’s landscape is one of unprecedented, rapid, disruptive change. With little margin for error, leaders and teams are expected to adapt to change and react to setbacks quickly. In our experience, the only way to tackle these challenges and come back stronger is by building resilience yet very few people are actively preparing to do…

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Start Building Resilience

Defining Resilience Chances are when discussing the topic of resilience you have heard various definitions that paint a picture of “bouncing back” from stress, crisis, setbacks, etc. To test this concept, I tried bouncing a ball and realized something significant: After it hit the ground it rarely came back higher than where it had started.…

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“An organization without purpose manages human resources, whereas an organization with purpose mobilizes people.” – Juan Carlos Eichholz Resilience Starts With Alignment Any healthy organization is formed with a specific purpose in mind. That purpose is usually defined by the organizational mission, vision, and values. However, over time an organization’s purpose can get clouded by…

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Using Corporate Politics To Drive Change

Change Starts With Alignment The need to have people on the same page is huge when implementing a major change. This is particularly true when the change involves thinking differently to solve a problem that can’t be solved by doing things better, faster, or cheaper. Enabling leaders to get people aligned is always necessary, but…

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Choose Resilience

Resilience Begins With A Choice How many times have you made a choice that did not result in the outcome you intended? Did you even know you were making a choice? Often we unconsciously choose the path of least resistance. We default to what is comfortable and requires the least amount of change. Improving our…

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Guilt & Resentment Are you tired of corporate politics and drama? Some of us are better or more strategic in dealing with it and some organizations are more ‘political’ than others, but it’s not uncommon for there to be an unspoken or hidden layer of politics just close enough to the surface to keep us…

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When To Rethink Your Organizational Structure “Is it time for a new organizational structure?” This question does not always have an obvious answer. Organizational restructuring, by definition, can be disruptive, even when handled as smoothly as possible, and even with the best of intentions. There is always a risk that the new structure will bring…

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Corporate Restructuring That Works Starting a business, whether a lemonade stand or a consulting firm with a new approach to corporate restructuring, begins with a realization that something is missing in the market. Often, an entrepreneur feels so strongly about the missing piece that they are willing to drive a stake in the ground. A stake…

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The Case For Adaptive Leadership Do the challenges you face today seem more complex than they did, say, five years ago? Does it seem like they involve more people or that it takes more involvement from stakeholders to build a solution that works? Is it starting to feel like managing stakeholders is as complex as…

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“Before anything great is really achieved, your comfort zone must be disturbed.” – Ray Lewis Comfort Zones Have you ever struggled to get out of your comfort zone? At one point or another, we are all acutely aware of our comfort zone – usually when we’re bumping up against it head first. We know we…

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  “The task of leadership is to create an alignment of strengths, making a system’s weaknesses irrelevant.” – Peter Drucker   Imagine a company where everyone – from the CEO to the newest intern – shows up knowing EXACTLY what they need to do every single day, even on those days where plans fail and…

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Picture of Alignment

What Alignment Looks Like Is your team 100% aligned around your organization’s goals for 2019? Are you absolutely certain that you are making the right or “bests” projects to drive change and build organizational muscle? Can you deliver with what you have been budgeted, or less? If you are not 110% aligned and committed, 2019…

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Pause To Build Resilience

Have you ever gone into a situation…maybe a tough conversation… with one intent in mind, only to come out having done or said something else? It happens to all of us and it can chip away at our resilience. We think we’ve got it, but it’s not easy to consciously and consistently make effective choices…

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Business Architect

Defining Business Architecture Today, many organizations still struggle to define what the role of a Business Architect should be and how to clearly articulate the value of Business Architecture to leadership. So let’s start by dispelling some popular myths about Business Architecture. Business Architects are NOT: assigned the next ‘hot potato’ project that has been…

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Resilience Isn’t About Bouncing Back Today’s landscape is one of unprecedented, rapid, disruptive change. With little margin for error, leaders are expected to adapt to change and react to setbacks quickly. Unfortunately, the skills required to tackle these challenges, process quickly, and come back stronger require thinking differently in ways that are rarely mentioned in…

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Imagine a company with 10 senior leaders. Carol is the CEO and she’d new to her role. Her leadership team must come together and make one decision on which the future of the company hangs. They prioritize the company’s investments to drive the strategy. Here’s the catch: Every one of them (and every other leadership…

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I recently had the honor of closing Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business’s Executive MBA Alumni Summit. I realized that the audience would be full of people with enough leadership potential to have their MBA paid for by a company and enough stick-to-it-iveness to get that work done while juggling high powered jobs, kids, family…

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3 Skills for Adaptive Leadership

Traditional Training Doesn’t Produce Adaptive Leadership Skills People are constantly facing business issues they have never seen before, and they are coming at an increasing rate. Too often employees feel like running on a treadmill, going nowhere fast. The harder they run, the more worn out they become and have no progress to show for…

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Why Playing Nice Doesn't Work

Imagine you are a manager and you are called to a meeting by your boss to talk about team building. You walk into a room and are introduced to Fred, the ‘team building guy’. Oh, and all your peers, including the marketing guy that you hate and the HR woman that you have no time…

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Stop Struggling with Organizational Change

How Are You Handling Organizational Change? Does your organization miss some of your strategic objectives each year? Do you have goals that are recycled from last  year, with new names? Do departments struggle to see how they fit into the overall business strategy? Is your team tackling new projects while struggling to get the existing…

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Digital Transformation Is Here! Just when you thought they couldn’t come up with a new buzz word, now there is Digital Transformation! For those who want a deep dive, check out the new book, Leading Digital. For those interested in jumping to what needs to be done … read on. Digitization is here and the…

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As 2018 dawns, two questions are being asked by many IBHR leaders and Chief Human Resource Officers: Is this year’s plan for my Human Resources team good enough to deliver strategic value across the organization to truly differentiate our organization from the competition? What is the next key capability that Human Resources needs to front…

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Operating Model

Ever feel like your team is not hearing you? You turn around and either they are squabbling about who gets their share of limited resources, or they are off in their own space ‘working really hard.’ Unfortunately, you just can’t tell how all that work is driving your strategic agenda. All those countless meetings were…

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One Too Many Mergers? Strong economies bring growth which inherently brings change. To achieve growth, there has been a significant increase in mergers and acquisitions over the last several years. While mergers and acquisitions clearly grow organizations, there are unintended consequences that can limit and, in some cases, undermine growth. Leaders seeking growth acquire organizations…

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The Number 1 Way to Blast Personal Agendas Have you been in a meeting when personal agendas take over? Usually, everyone politely ignores Fred, the VP who’s gunning to expand his empire a bit further, all while hoping someone ‘above’ will reign him in. It’s hard not to think of the good Fred would do,…

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Secrets of Adaptive Leadership: The Antidote to VUCA

Adaptive Leadership: The Antidote to VUCA VUCA. The acronym that reminds us we live and work in a Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and Ambiguous world. As if we needed reminding. I don’t think we have one client that isn’t trying to compensate for the pace of rapid, disruptive change, whether it be through restructuring, prioritization, building…

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How-HR-Budget-Drives-Strategy

Are you spending your Human Resources budget on HR capabilities that drive strategy? All executives are accountable for budgets.  How sure are you that your HR budget aligns scarce resources to drive the HR capabilities required to execute strategy? Do your internal clients complain that they are not getting the best value for their Human Resource investment?…

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Creating linkages and governance to make new organizational structures work

Have you ever seen a corporate restructuring where the dots didn’t connect? After all the angst that comes with organization design, have you ever felt like there was: Work that wasn’t missed until it went undone? Hand-offs between processes that don’t go smoothly? Critical decisions no one was empowered to make? Uncertainty around who was doing (or…

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