Specialists Kill Innovation

Organisations want innovation I’m not sure that statement is strictly true. Organisations say they want innovation, but the status quo is a very comfortable, unthreatening place to be. Organisations need innovation Maybe that is more realistic. If you don’t evolve and adapt whilst those around you are, then you are unlikely to survive. Innovation comes […]

Pseudoscientific Management

Pseudoscience Pseudoscience answers everything Pseudoscience hates being challenged Pseudoscience rejects new ideas Pseudoscience cannot fail Pseudoscience is static Science Science questions everything Science thrives on being challenged Science opens up to new ideas Science is designed to fail Science changes Pseudoscience or Science? Opinions or observations? Dogma or debate? Convinced or sceptical? Performance Management or Test […]

Strategic Plans and Complex Systems

Organisations are systems System  /ˈsɪstəm/ A set of things working together as parts of a mechanism or an interconnecting network; a complex whole There are (at the risk of gross oversimplification) three types of system: Simple Complicated Complex Simple systems These are easy to understand and predict.  Boiling an electric kettle is a simple system, there […]

Jack of All Trades Master of Non

What makes a successful scientist? In the 1950’s, Bernice T. Eiduson started to wonder why some scientists had a greater impact than others.  Some scientists produce insight after insight, racking up papers and prizes.  Whilst others just plod along and never account for much. What makes some scientists more innovative than others? To find out, she picked a […]

Avoiding Death by PowerPoint

Selling ideas We spend our time selling ideas.  We invest hours persuading people to give time, energy and resources to our projects.  Then we spend more time letting them know how those projects are going.  Ensuring that the all important funding and investment keeps on coming… The weapon of choice It doesn’t matter where you work  — with the odd […]

What Do You Believe?

Weltanschauung An interesting word.  It ranks alongside bier and keller in my grasp of the German language noun, German (plural Weltanschauungen /ˈvɛltˌanʃaʊ(ə)n/) A comprehensive conception or image of the universe and of humanity’s relation to it A perception of the world especially from a specific standpoint A particular philosophy or view of life; the world view of an individual […]

Do You Know Where You Are Going?

Stating the bleeding obvious… When I was in my 20’s I went on a course.  The instructor put up a slide.  It looked like this: His point was simple.  To be successful create alignment.  Make sure everybody is pulling in the same direction.  It was such an obvious point that I wondered why on earth […]

Selling an Idea

Presentation skills I guess that you — like me — spend lots of time selling ideas.  Trying to get funding and resources for the projects and improvements that you want to do. My standard approach is to bang a load of information into PowerPoint and hope for the best.  I want to show the man […]

Short-term Management

The curse of short-termism We focus on the immediate future:  The stock market obsesses about interim returns Politicians like to see instant results Managers must hit quarterly targets  We rarely look beyond the next 6 months. It is easy to hit a short-term target It doesn’t take too much talent or imagination: If you have to cut […]

The Ultimate Business Constraint

Running a business is tough I used to run my own business. It was hard work. I have the utmost respect for anybody who does it. The constraint on my business wasn’t the lack of good ideas or cash — I have plenty of ideas and I could always find somebody to lend me money. […]