The New Manager – Leading People, Teams and Processes New manager training is a challenge for every company. I have just completed and published a new course to fulfill the need of training new managers (or those hoping to be) in the essential people and team management skills. It is based on principles and practices of lean culture. A lot of the material in this course is similar to my Team Leadership course, however, every lecture is new and hopefully […]
For the past several months I have been focused on completing two related projects. Both focused on the development of coaching skills and your capacity to provide coaching to every leader and team. One is the publication of a book, The Lean Coach. The second is the launch of a new online course, Coaching Leaders for Success. To change the culture of an organization you must change the habits of leaders and teams. Habits rarely change without the assistance of a coach. The Necessity of Coaching Most […]
Udemy has just changed the game for professional training and development. Today Udemy made an announcement that has shaken up the online learning world and caused us to re-evaluate the nature of the online learning marketplace. It will require every other online platform (Lynda, Teachable, etc.) to rethink their pricing strategy. This is great news for consumers of professional learning. Beginning April 4th all courses on Udemy will be priced no higher than $50 and no less than $20 (regardless […]
Google’s Research on Their Own Teams Google is one of the smartest companies on earth today. They pursue excellence in both their products and their people with more determination than almost any other organization. Some while ago they recognized that teams were the foundation of their organization and culture. Sound familiar? They have just completed a thorough research effort to determine what makes teams high performing, or not. It is published in today’s New York Times Magazine and I strongly […]
How many times have we heard that “money is power?” It is one of those cliches that has been spoken so many times that one assumes it must be true. Perhaps it was. In both the political and the business world there is a tectonic shift that is proving that what may have been true at some time in the past, is no longer true today. Understanding the on-going shift to other forms of power is essential to successful business and political strategy, now and into the future.
We live in a world of standardization. Lean manufacturing or Toyota Production System is necessarily based on standardization, repeatable processes, identical parts, designed for ease of installation and reliability. But, what if every automobile was not the same as every other one and had its own story to tell? What if every car had a completely unique history and no two cars had the same parts? What if there were no replacement parts – no Autozone or NAPA, or dealership parts department? Welcome to Cuba!
As a student of leadership I must offer my hopes and prayers for the coming year, and to do so I will defer to the wisdom of George Washington. It will be a critical year and those of us who give serious thought to the subject of leadership have a responsibility to speak out. I will avoid becoming overtly political, but this year will be dominated by politics. The subject of leadership and how or why voters choose leaders cannot be avoided.
The principles and process of Agile Strategy Execution are derived from the proven experience of Toyota, Lean Startup, and Agile software development. Agile Strategy Execution is derived, not only from my experience in lean, but also from Lean Startup and Agile software development. I think it is worth considering the core principles that link these practices.
Research by the Conference Board and by researchers reporting in the Harvard Business Review (March 2015) report that the execution of strategy is their greatest concern. The Conference Board’s recent Survey of CEOs revealed that chief executives are so concerned about strategy execution that they rated it as both their number one and number two most challenging issue. Agile Strategy Execution is a solution to the problem.
Many organizations are not gaining the potential benefits of teams in the workplace due to misunderstandings about team autonomy and self-control. This is a critical issue in organization design and leadership today. Let’s clarify both the benefits and the determinants of team autonomy.
The purpose of presidential campaigns is to put on display the qualities of leadership of each candidate so we may choose among them. But what are those qualities we seek, why, and do they match the needs of the age in which we live? If we were a corporate search committee we would want to align the strategic challenges of the firm with the competencies of the candidates.
Coaching is becoming widespread in our organizations with many people claiming to be coaches, but with very different interests and skills. To those implementing lean management it is important to recognize that every manager at Toyota has a coach or mentor. The goals of the coach and the client should be in alignment. There are a number of ways to describe the continuum of relationships between coach and client: from short-term to long-term, from focused on today’s problems to developing strategic systems and culture, from low to high intimacy. For the sake of simplicity I will divide this continuum into three zones: the Blue, Green and Red Zones of Caring.
If you go through my Team Leadership (Team Kata) course you will quickly be confronted with the strong suggestion that every manager and every team have a coach to lead them through the steps of lean implementation and to provide feedback to the leader and team. But, you ask, where are we going to get all these coaches? Here is a clear answer.
The world of corporate training and development has yet to fully embrace the new reality of technology, online resources, and the need to integrate learning into the daily habits of all managers and team members. This requires a deliberate map of the learning process, eliminating waste, and breaking down silos.
I hope you all had a great Christmas, or any Holiday you celebrate. And, I hope you are ready for a wonderful New Year. Not a “happy” New Year, but a New Year filled with great challenges. More about that in a minute. I have been very quiet on this blog for the last several months because my attention has been very focused on the challenge of creating great online learning courses. I first published my Team Kata course this […]