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The biggest thief… and Opting out of email

Here we are….

The two articles that are resonant to me this week, one from Jack Welch and one from Derek, one for governing a company and one for governing your own self.

Here are few extract quotes from the two writing that I find most useful for me.

1- Opting out of email (by Derek Handley – link)

We all already have one inner voice permanently talking at our minds; trying to calm and be at peace with it is enough of a challenge. Overlaying another stream on top which is constantly interrupting what little white space we have left to really think, is one of the banes of our generation. Our constant connectedness brings a lot of great possibilities, but the status with which we hold it today is a prohibitor of creativity, independent thinking, peace of mind and presence in the real world.

a lot of us operate on auto pilot — lemming-like into the office, laptops up, crashing into the inbox and fighting with it for nine hours straight punctuated by rushed in-person meetings that generate more inbox artillery, shrapnel cc’d everywhere and at the end of the day or the week a sense of — ‘what did we achieve’? And are we happy with it, or ourselves? Often not a lot and no, not really.

If you are fit, look great, eat well, sleep well but are living somebody else life, by the imaginary rules of other people, ignoring your own true path and dreams and the essence of who you are, then you may be well, but you aren’t truly being.


2- The biggest thief in your organization (by Jack Welch – link)

Instead, most managers find themselves in countless productivity-sucking meetings and sidebar conversations about underperformers. “Rick didn’t finish the spreadsheet again, and Sally had to stay up all night so we could have it for the clients. What are we going to do?”

The biggest energy drain with thieves can often be the effort it takes to push past their caveats and excuses, and goad them into doing the work in the first place.

The most valuable resource you have as a manager is your attention. Invest it in top people and those with the potential to join their ranks.

Keeping an inveterate conflict-creator on the team doesn’t make you a good, balanced manager. It makes you a robbery victim.

At the end of the day, it’s pretty much about being authentic, being who you truly are, having courage to make tough call, and balancing the act.

Saigon, 13.May.2016

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Thoughts & Note on: Reinventing Performance Management (HBR)

In a series of HBR Favorite Articles 2015, I selected some articles that I feel most relevant to my current viewpoint & extract some of their core things here.

This is the first of my series: Reinventing Performance  Management

And here is some selected notes:

1- “…ratings reveal more about the rater than they do about the ratee.”

This gave us pause. We wanted to understand performance at the individual level, and we knew that the person in the best position to judge it was the immediate team leader. But how could we capture a team leader’s view of performance without running afoul of what the researchers termed “idiosyncratic rater effects”?

2- When the results were in and tallied, three items correlated best with high performance for a team: “My coworkers are committed to doing quality work,” “The mission of our company inspires me,” and “I have the chance to use my strengths every day.” Of these, the third was the most powerful across the organization.

3- But to recognize each person’s performance, we had to be able to see it clearly… Here we faced two issues—the idiosyncratic rater effect and the need to streamline our traditional process of evaluation, project rating, consensus meeting, and final rating. The solution to the former requires a subtle shift in our approach. Rather than asking more people for their opinion of a team member (in a 360-degree or an upward-feedback survey, for example), we found that we will need to ask only the immediate team leader—but, critically, to ask a different kind of question. People may rate other people’s skills inconsistently, but they are highly consistent when rating their own feelings and intentions. To see performance at the individual level, then, we will ask team leaders not about the skills of each team member but about their own future actions with respect to that person.

…In effect, we are asking our team leaders what they would do with each team member rather than what they think of that individual.

4- Our design calls for every team leader to check in with each team member once a week. For us, these check-ins are not in addition to the work of a team leader; they are the work of a team leader…If you want people to talk about how to do their best work in the near future, they need to talk often.

At the bottom line, I believe few things will help to solve Deloitte’s next challenge (to be transparence & 1-single rating number or not?) are:

1- Open communication, as much as possible: team’s members, even though are not in consensus, will still follow the organization’s decision if the decision making process is clear and transparence.

2- It should be in the heart of leader/manager that all rating they do, they’ll do in the best interest of the organization (up to their awareness) – training of process is needed to eliminate personal interest.

Hai Linh.