Monthly Archives: October 2014

How Do You Keep Them?

You invest a lot in your employees. You spend money recruiting them, then you integrate them into your business which takes time and often money. There’s a sunk cost associated with hiring new employees, and it’s helpful to avoid sinking it again. So, once you have got ’em, how do you keep ’em? Well, you […]

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Transparency

Keeping secrets from your competition makes sense. Keeping secrets from your employees makes for some drama. And that’s not good at all. As a leader you need to be open about what you are doing. With few exceptions, the time for secrets is over. Forgot the passive aggressive manipulation, forget playing Jack off of Jill, […]

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Politics in the Workplace

As Election Day in the United States approaches next week, political conversations in the workplace may be reaching a boiling point. Here in Asia in the last few months we have had protests in Hong Kong, a presidential election in Indonesia, new policies from the Indian prime minister, and a new round of immigration policy […]

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Do You Fit In?

A few years ago the president of a large public university in the United States stepped down after two years in the job. The first unusual thing about that was the timing…that is a job that most people keep longer, and he even suggested he had intended to stay in it for at least four […]

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Lose the Negativity

I once shared cubicle space with a new guy in my office who was incredibly negative and cynical immediately upon his arrival. At first I thought he was just cranky after moving here from overseas, and having to find a house and get his furniture moved here and get his kids registered for school and […]

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Mentoring

Mentoring someone is a lot of fun, very rewarding, something you can be proud of. And if you do it wrong, you can really screw someone up for life. When we talk about mentoring we mean something more formal than just giving someone advice, but less formal than a manager-employee relationship. In fact, it is […]

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The Key is Not the Plan…It’s the Planning

A well-developed business plan, with lots of PowerPoint slides, appendices, bibliographies, all wrapped up in a nice shiny binder, is a great thing. For example, it makes a great doorstop. It can be used to prop up the corner of a crooked desk. It makes a helpful place to set your coffee. One thing is […]

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Think Inside a Bigger Box

The phrase “think outside the box” is one of those clichés that started out with a basis in a great idea but has been so overused that its original meaning was lost. I had a boss who took it one step further, telling us to “throw away the box.” On the surface it is an […]

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Book Review: Free Agent Nation

Free Agent Nation is primarily designed for the free agent rather than the leader. Let’s put that up front. Still, the book is very useful for leaders for a couple reasons. First, because you might be a free agent yourself, “leading” an ad hoc collection of other free agents, and if you are in this […]

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Management by Wandering Around

Back in the day there emerged a concept called Management by Walking Around. The idea behind it was pretty sound: you can’t lead people from behind a closed door, but instead need to get out there and see what they are doing, listen to what they have to say, and so on. It is a […]

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