/blog > Management Practices

No return

We frequently hear about the importance of a Return on Investment (ROI) to justify a decision being made to proceed down a certain path, especially when implementing a new technology. Clearly there are some systems for which there’s a clear ROI, such as replacing a completely manual process with an automated system (that may actually replace a person or people), or replacing existing training with an equivalent that’s cheaper. However, how many companies end up not implementing an innovative technology that may result in huge benefits, because they can’t assign an exact dollar value to that implementation? The areas in which a system may add value or benefits may be clear, but assigning a monetary value to that benefit may not be. For example, you might assume that a new applicant tracking system that automates and innovates some processes will add value, but how many of the efficiency improvements are…

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coot

As most regular readers and /or podcast subscribers know, I work for Zapoint, a company that sells “self-directed career management software.” What this means, very briefly, is that many talent management functions normally performed by HR are performed by the employees themselves, including identifying skills gaps, setting a career path, etc. Although such a solution can be implemented with various levels of organizational oversight and control, the whole idea still makes some managers uneasy…to say the least. So we get the odd uncomfortable joke about the monkeys running the zoo or the inmates running the asylum, all of which is par for the course. Still, even among managers who have enthusiastically adopted our approach, I wonder how many are ready for this? Why Employees Should Decide Who Gets Bonuses At both Linden Lab and his new company Coffee & Power, Philip Rosedale took a radical approach to bonuses: He let…

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Privacy

How and why is this surprising? Employers ask job seekers for Facebook passwords When Justin Bassett interviewed for a new job, he expected the usual questions about experience and references. So he was astonished when the interviewer asked for something else: his Facebook username and password. Bassett, a New York City statistician, had just finished answering a few character questions when the interviewer turned to her computer to search for his Facebook page. But she couldn’t see his private profile. She turned back and asked him to hand over his login information. Bassett refused and withdrew his application, saying he didn’t want to work for a company that would seek such personal information. But as the job market steadily improves, other job candidates are confronting the same question from prospective employers, and some of them cannot afford to say no. Am I just being cyncial? Once we established that they…

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Stratolaunch-1211-mdn

At the beginning of each edition of FastForward Radio I mention a “convergence of emerging technologies and emerging possibilities which lies at the heart of this, the greatest period of transformation in human history.” On the show we often talk about the technologies themselves, with some discussion of the possibilities they open up. There is a paradox in the relationship between technology and possibility. New technologies inevitably provide new capabilities and open up all kinds of new possibilities. But the assumption that new possibilities always come from new technologies can blind us to the fact that we are surrounded by untapped possibility. There is a vast amount of dormant possibility in the technologies and capabilities and infrastructure that we already have. For example, when Stratolaunch ( the new commercial spaceflight company founded by Burt Rutan and Paul Allen) set out to devise a reliable and cost-effective way to get rockets…

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reggieTN

This week we continue our exploration of an idea that’s getting increasing attention from companies that are looking to increase productivity and improve the bottom line working with what they’ve got. We all know that each interaction between a company and a customer is a “moment of truth,” and that all customers represent a certain level of value to the business — but it seems that some customers are more valuable than others. Our guest s an expert on customer profitability. In Part 2 of our discussion, he outlines how organizations can implement their own customer profitability programs. About Our Guest Reginald White is a seasoned professional with experience in Marketing, Sales, Organizational Development, Diversity and Human Resources Management. He is a partner with CIS Valued Partners. Over the past 20 years he has held VP level positions in Human Resources and Marketing. He has managed diverse teams and complex…

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office2

UPDATE: Instalanche. We’ll have more on this topic when Jay joins us for next week’s Transparency Revolution audio edition. And while you’re taking surveys… try the Social Media and Career Management Survey. I’m giving a $5 Starbuck’s card for the first 100 people who answer that one. — Related to last week’s piece on whether both office hours and offices themselves are on the way out, reader and blogger Jay Manifold wrote the following comment: I stand by my prediction that within this decade, a majority of large private employers in the US will not merely tolerate, but mandate, telecommuting for their employees whose jobs do not involve the movement of physical objects or face-to-face customer contact. Some of the responses above are pretty amusing.  The hard facts are that economics favors a movement in this direction, that it has already been successfully implemented on a massive scale, and that…

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unemployment_sign3

Out of work? Here’s a list of 72 companies that don’t have a job for you.

What’s the big deal, you say? Times are tight. There are hundreds, thousands of companies that aren’t hiring.Read More…

Bart_Simpson

Transparent organizations tend to know what they know, and that is not a trivial thing. When an organization doesn’t know what it knows, or doesn’t know some of the things that that it should now — that is to say, when information that the organization owns and is responsible is no longer available within the organization — all manner of mischief can occur.Read More…

TransparencyRevolutionLogo

Special guest Kate Sweetman joins us to discuss the relationship between leadership and transparency, including:

  1. An overview of the principles of leadership
  2. A look at how leadership needs to adapt to today’s market realities
  3. The role that leadership plays in making organizations more open and transparent.

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google1

How does Google do it? There are many different possible answers to that, of course, depending on which “it” you mean. But here’s a quote from former CEO Eric Schmidt, talking about talent management at Google, that really caught my attention:

“People are going to do what they are going to do, and you’re there to assist them. They don’t need me, they are going to do it anyway. They are going to do it for their whole lives. Maybe they could use a little help from me. At Google, we give the impression of not managing the company because we don’t really. It sort of has its own borg-like quality if you will. It sort of just moves forward.”

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