Management

Are MBAs becoming irrelevant?

by Idris Mootee Are business schools preparing students for a flat world where organizations and national boundaries are becoming blurred? Looking at this year MBA rankings by Financial Times, there aren’t many changes in the Top 10 list. The surprise is that #10 is a Hong Kong Business School and #12 is an Indian Business School. Other top schools (some ...

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Who Killed Our Business?

Most business managers go through the annual ritual of budgeting. We plan the next one or two years based on the actual results of the most recent year. We draw up a spreadsheet and plan line by line – sales revenues up 10% and costs held to a 5% increase means a modest improvement in profits. We should have learned ...

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Solid Service Principles are Crucial

Below is the latest blog I just received from Seth Godin. He (as he does most days) makes an important point especially for Service based companies and provides additional reasons why Service Design can be such a potent weapon for progressive companies. It’s not JUST the steak or the phone call or the insurance cover that your customers are buying ...

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Ownership in the Innovation Process

“Excuse me, is this yours?” If someone asked members of your Innovation Team about “ownership” of a current initiative, would individuals reply, “Yes”? Or would the people involved point to the team leader, the CEO or someone else – someone other than themselves? Would they reply, “No, that’s his”? I spoke recently with a CEO of a consumer products company ...

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Don't Be A Rule Fool

Wait your turn. No pushing in line. Yield to pedestrians. Treat others the way you would like to be treated. Certain timeless rules are better obeyed than broken. But in today’s topsy-turvy business world, many of the rules that informed and guided previous generations of business leaders no longer apply. If you’re not breaking rules on a regular basis, your ...

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Don't Demolish Your Own Innovation

Innovative ideas – the kind that can transform your company – are inadvertently being demolished. When first presented, many ideas meet wrecking-ball comments such as: “How’s that going to work?” “Good luck getting that done!” “We don’t have time for something like that.” And the classic, “Doesn’t work… Trust me… We tried that years ago.” We’ve all heard (or perhaps ...

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How is Innovation Like Pornography?

I made what in hindsight is a fairly funny mistake recently. Working with a new client who wanted to become more innovative, we pressed ahead into a project only to realize that their definition of innovation was to have customers interact with their products in a technology showcase. When I think of “innovation” I think of teams using a number ...

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Accountability: Innovation in a Changing Business Environment

As companies and organizations pursue innovation to transform themselves from what they currently are or offer, to what they want to become or provide the marketplace, accountability is the rudder that steers pursuits and prevents a wandering, directionless ship. Wikipedia defines “Accountability” as part responsibility and answerability, liability and enforcement, blameworthiness and consequences. “Accountability is defined as ‘A is accountable ...

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Making a Case for Innovation in the Absence of Proof

How do you prove something that hasn’t happened yet? That’s the challenge facing innovative ideas inside many companies. Innovation, by definition, is a leap into the unknown. But for organizations that increasingly look to past history/results and data to determine future steps, quantifying the likely success and/or risk with an innovative idea can be tricky. Or, as Roger Martin and ...

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Keeping Employees Informed – A Step-by-Step Guide

In my last blog, I talked about the importance of communicating your strategic planning framework to employees at all levels of the organization. And not just once, but over and over again so that people never lose sight of the goals. I also noted that most employees prefer to hear this information directly from their boss or manager. But face-to-face ...

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