Blog Posts

Post Category: ‘Quality of conversation’

Beware of sentences with the word “Just” in them

I am sure you have heard the advice.  It usually begins, “It is easy….” and continues…. You just run a bit faster to improve your marathon time You just go out and get some more clients, and sales will increase You just pull all your blogs together and you will have a book. You just train harder and you will …

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The six frogs and decision making

Here is a question for you: There are six frogs on a wall.  Two frogs decide to jump off.  How many frogs are now on the wall? OK, I’ll save you the embarrassment: there are six. Why? The two frogs only decided to jump off; they did not actually jump off. Sorry! First, the difference between deciding – and acting …

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Mind the gap: The perils of strategy mapping

Strategy maps are a very visual tool.  So sometimes small details catch someone’s eye.  However, the picture might be saying more than a thousand words if you are not careful. Is that small gap important? Earlier this year I was training a group of managers in the strategy mapping process.  They were to take on and develop the higher level …

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Methodology is not the same as method

I like to pay attention to our language, because how we speak gives us clues about how we think.  In this case how we are failing to think about a subject. There is one particular word, the use of which, really annoys me.  That word is: Methodology You hear methodology used a lot to describe a set of techniques, or …

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The Balanced Scorecard is not a technical tool: It is a social tool!

Most of what we see in “Balanced scorecards” are technical tools. Many of the questions we see and hear on balanced scorecard forums are technical questions.  Many balanced scorecard projects are seen as, primarily, technical projects. This applies to of all generations of balanced scorecards and many implementations.  To many, the whole approach is thought of as a technical solution …

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Insight 5: It’s about the quality of conversation:

Insight 5:  It’s about the quality of conversation: It is good to force out arguments, ambiguity and conflict This insight is part is a series of six insights into strategy, people and performance, derived from working with my clients in 2013. When working on strategy with clients, for years now, I have focused their attention on the quality of their …

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The Six Step Decision Process: How executive teams make effective decisions

Making good decisions and executing them well is fundamental to an organisation’s strategy and performance.  How organisations make and take decisions, and their whole decision process, is at the heart of this. Over the years we have watched and helped teams make many decisions about their strategy and their organisations.  They have often found it helpful when we have highlighted …

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Why do many (corporate) mission or vision statements omit the obvious?

Why do many (corporate) mission or vision statements omit the obvious? TO MAKE MONEY or “To create a return on the capital invested in the organisation by the owners and funders.” Are their mission or vision statements pandering to a different audience? Are they really what the owners investors think? Are they some sort of manager aspiration? It seems to …

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Performance management and cultures: Nine tips

On a Linkedin discussion a Chief Executive from a Housing Association asked about how best to go about a)  the process of identifying and measuring leading performance indicators. b)  with practical experience of implementing performance management systems and cultures. Having worked with Housing Associations in the past, here were seven quick tips (Which would apply in almost any organisation): 1) …

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Mission and vision (part 2)

When discussing Mission and Vision, the word, “Purpose” also gets used. In some cases defining mission as if it is purpose. I used to do that, but the two words are different in plain English. (I have a rule – if there are two words in plain English they probably mean two different things). I think the Missionary has a …

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