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Home Archive for category "Decision-making" (Page 2)

Are you a bad boss?

An old adage says, “People don’t leave their companies, they leave their managers.”  There are lots of reasons an employee may leave a company . . . higher pay, better hours, shorter commute, etc. . . . but in many cases, a bad boss is in there too.  Think about your own work experience and

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Be decisive. Get focused. Take a nap.

Successful people have always been, and continue to be, studied, researched, and analyzed endlessly.  Why?  Because we want to learn what makes them tick.  We want to find out what they do (or don’t do) that makes them more successful than the rest of us.  I recently read two online articles, each describing a characteristic

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“At the end of the day, you bet on people, not strategies.”

The Filene Research Institute is a think tank aimed at helping credit unions find ways to operate smarter, more efficiently, and more effectively.  An acquaintance of mine who manages a credit union shared one of Filene’s reports with me.  The title of the report is “Attributes and Skills of Highly Effective Credit Union Managers,” but

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Learn to delegate

I’ve written about delegation before, but I continue to think about it because so many small business owners don’t do it very well. Entrepreneurs often like to pull all the significant levers in the business and push all the important buttons.  They built the business and know the critical parts of it better than anyone,

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Stop Making Those Decisions

In a 1995 article by A.E. Carlisle entitled simply, “MacGregor,” Carlisle tells the story of the title character who is a plant manager with a remarkable management style.  At the core of MacGregor’s style is his refusal to make any operating decisions.  Sounds a little odd, doesn’t it?  Yet his plant (even though it’s the

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“Permitting colleagues to participate in decision-making is not so much a favor to the participants as it is to the executive.”

The days of the boss hurling down lightning bolts while his employees scurry to do his bidding are long gone.  Employees today are better educated, better trained, and have access to more information than ever before.  They have insights as to what’s working well and what’s not.  In short, they are smart people who expect

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“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.”

In his outstanding book, Great by Choice, Jim Collins relates the story of Howard Putnam, a former CEO of Southwest Airlines. Putnam institutionalized the Southwest Airlines’ “recipe” for success. His “recipe” was not a strategic plan or a vision or a mission statement, but a carefully thought-out list of operating principles. That list included: Utilize

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“No organization can make good decisions without conflict.”

“No organization can make good decisions without conflict.” “If everyone is thinking alike, someone’s not thinking.” We tend to veer away from conflict.  It can make us feel uncomfortable, or even downright shaken.  It can inspire anger, anxiety, hurt feelings, and a lot of other negative outcomes.  So we avoid it.  We try to play

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Running a company is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do.

Running a company is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do. Below are some activities that, when performed rigorously and consistently, tend to separate strong small business operators from those who are struggling. It is not intended to be a comprehensive list, and the list is not in any particular

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“A decision is an action an executive must take . . . “

For owners and managers, decision-making goes with the territory.  We can’t escape it.  It’s an important part of the job.  Even if an executive presides over an inclusive, democratic decision-making process, he or she must still make sure that process is effective and efficient and doesn’t lead to grid lock.  Decisions are what move an

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