What Sets “Next” Practice Businesses Apart?

Today's best businesses have embraced Next Practices which make them "different" from the rest in 6 important ways. The best businesses are the ones that have adopted a set of "next practices" that set them apart from the rest. You know that you're in a next practices business because they all exhibit these 6 characteristics: They re-imagine tomorrow They envision things that others can't……

Read More

Consultants: Resistance Is Futile

When you look back on your career, you remember the jobs you took, the jobs you declined, the opportunities realized and the opportunities lost.  You remember the special people along the way; the great bosses, mentors, coaches and the lifelong friends.   You also remember the Consultants.  As a consumer of consulting services for more years than I care to admit, I have developed a well defined…

Read More

Leadership and Digital Transformation

News Flash: The #1 thing leaders need to understand is that the Digital Transformation train left the station a few years ago. If you weren't onboard back then, you need to stop looking for the next train and rapidly go in search of building a rocket ship. Businesses simply have run out of time to embark on multi-year transformation projects - that window has closed. In the text that follows,…

Read More

The Number 1 Tip to Ensure Returns on Your Firm’s Digital Strategy

To succeed in today's rough and tumble business world you need a solid vision for how you can "digitalize" your business. Indeed, it is not enough to have a vivid and compelling business strategy.  We must be able to discern what role we are expecting digital technology to play within the business.  It is only with this understanding that we can establish the necessary linkages required to inform…

Read More

IBM Study Points to Millennials as Key Driver to Better Security of Personal Information

There is hope on the horizon that the field of identity protection will continue to evolve and improve. It appears that the next generation of working adults is championing the use of new and enhanced methods of security. Late last month, IBM announced the release of its Future of Identity Study, which reported (and I quote): Security outweighs convenience: People ranked security as the highest…

Read More

Success Depends on You Asking the Right Questions

As a team leader, it may be uncomfortable for you to ask the right questions. After all, the people you lead expect you to have answers. While it may give you pause to develop a list of questions for success, a Harvard Business School study indicates it is a really good idea. Consider the following: Are you asking yourself and your team the right questions? Will those questions propel you to…

Read More

The Value of Value Chain Analysis in Transforming Your Business

I have a different take on value chain analysis. Most think of it as positioning a business within its ecosystem. I think of a value chain as a graphical representation of all of the work that must be done by a business or work area in order to provide its goods/services (i.e., "value") to its customers. Value chains are a valuable means of presenting a normalized view of the business. It is free…

Read More

Continuous Business Optimization is a 21st Century Next Practice

Business optimization efforts have been around for years and are aimed at redefining the way work is performed within a business area. They explore issues surrounding what work is performed, how it is accomplished, when it's done and by whom. It's not unusual for a firm to totally reconstruct its departmental workflow and reorganize its workers during a business optimization. In most cases, these…

Read More

How to Drive Strategies By Assessing Your Company Capabilities

Every company has a set of capabilities that, when properly leveraged, can serve to devastate the competition. So, it's essential for leadership teams to pinpoint and honestly assess these capabilities. Once a solid profile is established, it can be used to inform the strategic planning processes used to build a winning strategic plan. Here's a simple framework that I use with clients to form…

Read More

What is Your Company’s Human Operating System?

I bet if I asked you what your company is all about you'd give me that same ol' rehearsed elevator pitch. You'd be able to tell me what it does and why it's important. But, if I asked you how. You just might stall. The answers on "how" a business does what it does lies in its unique combination of systems that governs how it executes its mission. I like to call this collection of systems the…

Read More

C-Suite Tip Number 1

We all know about the pyramid structure. It's a generic way to think about an enterprise and how most are organizationally design. Divided into three layers, the top layer of the pyramid is comprised of the senior-most leaders. These are the people responsible for setting strategic direction and guiding the enterprise towards its future. While certainly concerned with quarterly performance, the…

Read More

The “Next Practices” of Strategy-Setting

Are your strategic planning practices flat and uninspired? Have you reduced your planning process to a once per year, budgeting exercise? Do your senior people feel disengaged and removed from your strategic planning? Does the rank and file even understand what's in your strategic plan? Clearly, it's time for a new strategic planning paradigm to emerge - one that features the right set of "next…

Read More

Strategic Planning Must Change With The Times

If you’re frustrated by your organization’s current strategic planning and execution processes or the outcomes from that work, you’re not alone. Whether they’re developed in-house or brought in by outside strategy firms, many strategy methodologies are of little value if they don’t keep up with the times. So if you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you have always got.…

Read More

How to Get to What Happens Next

All of my strategy, culture and organizational design work over the years comes down to one thing - enabling my clients to differentiate themselves from their competitors so to dominate the markets that they serve.  Consequently, the topic of industry best practices always comes up.  Most leaders want to be sure that their organizations are remaining competitive within their industry.  While the…

Read More

10 Signs Your Company Culture Needs a Fix

There is little doubt that the best performing firms on the planet have exciting and healthy cultures - think Google, Southwest, and Nike - while other organizations seem to be in a constant state of struggle to reach their full potential.  The Leadership teams at struggling companies are often confounded to understand the reasons for their firm's underperformance.  Not surprisingly, company…

Read More

Freedom to Shine: Empowerment through Free Will

There is recent research that points to the notion that the belief in free will is a significant predictor to personal achievement.  It is suggested through this work that one's motivation is often accelerated when they believe that their effort can determine results - and, that their progress will not be slowed or redirected by outsideinfluencers that exist beyond their control. That said,…

Read More