Monday, June 17, 2013

Leaders – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

During my sabbatical, I’m reading on many of the topics that interest me but I have not had time to pursue during a busy daily corporate grind. Many of the topics do not appear on the surface to have a relationship to leading but they might.

The environment and resource utilization is certainly important to business overall but what about the three pillars – Reduce, Reuse and Recycle?

Reduce – A long time ago, I was mentored on this topic from an experienced supervisor.  He told me that as I rise up in an organization I should be sure to cancel as much work as I create!  Most leaders see the need for new things but few remember to reduce work.  Teams really appreciate those bosses that eliminate no longer needed tasks.

Reuse – “NIHS” (Not Invented Here Syndrome) is a challenge for all leaders.  People like to invent their own solutions to old problems.  I was once told that every business issue has already been solved, it is the leader’s responsibility to find the person with the answer.  Encourage your teams to seek existing solutions before they invent one and to document it for others to use in the future.

Recycle – Packaging an existing idea or concept differently often solves a problem faster.  This is particularly true when working internationally.  Something that works in the USA needs to be tweaked in order to be effective in Europe, India or China.  Even if the adjustments are simply to overcome the “we are different” statements of the critics. “LAF” (Look and Feel) should be made local and at the hands of the new users.

Do you have leadership reduce, reuse or recycle examples other LIAV reads would benefit from?


Monday, June 3, 2013

Why ask the Ignorant?

It has been three months since I showed up at the door step of a place of employment.  Do I miss it?  No.  Do I miss the people? Sure.

During this time we have taken on many important projects, events, trips and tasks.  Now that I have a bit more time, each of these start with a research phase.  “Dr. Google” knows everything and everyone. This allows access to the people that have solved the problem before.  For the same reason each of us add value in our professions, it is the expertise we each have that makes us valuable in the workforce.

If this is true, then why is it that so many people get their advice outside of work from family, friends and neighbors.  We ask the “ignorant” important questions that have long term impacts on our lives.  PLEASE do not be confused.  Ignorant does not indicate a lack of intelligence!  It simply means “unknowing.”  We all can’t know everything.  Many of my current questions have to do with next careers, finance and risk management.  I’m locating and talking to the experts that have proven track records.  People like to share and help those that come behind them.  They are mentoring just as we have done.

Do you seek out the best to answer your questions? 


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