Posts Tagged ‘problem solving’

Insular Incumbents

Monday, November 26th, 2018

Hidden Consequences 

Businesses don’t become insular, their leaders do. When leaders are so focused managing “in” their business that they overlook or are increasingly disinterested in the changes taking place around them (clients, markets, products, technology), they’ve made a deadly choice. Defending what they have is a bigger priority than embracing new ideas and new ways to evolve.  No surprise then that the “inwards thinking” permeates down to middle managers, who see little or no incentive in promoting experimentation on the front line. Faced with more effective alternatives, clients walk, and the brightest employees walk. By the time, the “alarm bell” is sounded, all too often it is too late, particularly in small businesses.     

Trapped

Monday, October 22nd, 2018

There are two forms of “entrapment”, physical and virtual. “Physical”, in the sense of the car being caught up in a traffic jam with nowhere to turn on a highway or motorway. “Virtual”, in the sense of being “stuck” in a lousy investment, business or job. Too often with the latter, I meet individuals where their mind has a vice-like grip on their ability to figure out how to adapt to the prevailing conditions (de-risk, effect change, change accountabilities) or escape entirely to a safer, more positive position. The good news is they can and very often will “escape” but their refusal to seek expert help dramatically prolongs the suffering. Move on!   

Ageing People Trump Ageing Tech

Wednesday, May 30th, 2018

 

Why do we place more faith in ageing technology than in ageing people? The older and wiser individuals are, surely, the more productive they are in resolving problems or in raising performance levels? Equally, the inverse is true of ageing technology. Yet as a society, we are more trusting of computers than human knowledge (car mechanics), more tolerant of computer error than human error (air traffic control failures) and more aggressive in unilaterally retiring people than legacy systems (insurance companies).

© James Berkeley 2018. All Rights Reserved.

 

 

Idiotic Management Award: UK Passport Office

Tuesday, February 6th, 2018

Here in the UK when renewing a new passport, the UK’s Passport Office insist on the application form being filled out and countersigned  in “black biro”, no blue black, and woe betide you if your handwriting should stray outside the tiny boxes provided. Rejection! At a cost of £287 for a family of four,  the experience of applying for a passport exudes extreme bureaucracy and frustration. Nearly three years into the fixed term tenure of Mark Thomson, formerly a Managing Director of the international arm of the UK’s Royal Mail, he has seemingly spent more time driving the burden onto the customer to infinitesimal detail and expense while the experience hasn’t improved one iota.

To what extent is the emphasis and energy on improvements in your own organisation over the next 12 months on “internal benefits” (reducing overhead) versus “external benefits” (customer)? Is that a productive and common sense use of scarce time and resources? If like Mark Thomson, you think your actions make sense, you rightly need to be removed from the job.

© James Berkeley 2018. All Rights Reserved.