Management: Obsess Over Productivity, Not Efficiency
It was management guru Peter Drucker who pointed out, “Efficiency is doing things right; effectiveness is doing the right things.” Business can get focused on squeezing out every last dollar, because it feels like that’s something that’s controllable. “If my people would only work harder, faster, we’d be making more money around here.” Drucker’s point is doing the wrong thing efficiently is inefficient. A recent HBR article gives added advice – instead of doing the same with less, look to do more with the same. HBR: Great Companies Obsess Over Productivity, Not Efficiency
Management: Fail-Safe Strategies For More Effective Meetings
To grow requires the efforts of others to extend beyond your own capacities and capabilities. And once you engage others, you’ve got to communicate and coordinate. Even in an age of digital technology, people need to meet. Here’s some suggestions: Entrepreneur: Fail-Safe Strategies For More Effective Meetings: https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/286643. And here’s some classic John Cleese to drive home the point: Cleese: Meetings Bloody Meetings
Management: Trick Yourself into Breaking a Bad Habit
It’s a new year – did you make a resolution or two? If so, statistics say you’ll break it by the end of February, if you haven’t already. Sometimes we’re our own worst enemy. It may even be the habit that got us to where we are that is now holding us back. You can muscle the business so far – then it takes a different skill set. Adapt or stagnate. HBR: Trick Yourself into Breaking a Bad Habit.
Management: How Long Should You Keep That Email?
Most small businesses have a default retention policy — retain everything. Even more so now, since with the cloud and ever cheaper memory we’re even less worried about space on the server. But in an era where hackers proliferate, a “retain all” practice increases the risk of company secrets or embarrassing materials, and increases risk of exposure in litigation as well. But shorter retention policies have their own downsides. Here are some pros and cons, which you might want to review with your attorney. InfoSec Institute: Top 5 Email Retention Policy Best Practices.
Management: Do You Know Who Holds Your Office Together?
“Treat your family like guests, and your guests like family” goes the maxim. Good business looks to build attachment to customers — to build that social connection that breeds trust and helps retention. Are you cultivating the same internally — treating staff like you do customers? An article in the Harvard Business Review looks at acknowledging and cultivating those people (and activities) inside your company who help hold it together. Retention is not just for customers. HBR: Do You Know Who Holds Your Office Together?
Management: What “Chip Cards” Mean for Your Business
October 1 presented a shift in some of the liability toward credit card fraud. If you are unable to accept the new chip card technologies (can only process physical cards via swipe,) you’re at risk of liability if there’s fraud on that card through your business. If your merchant service provider hasn’t discussed this with you, or given you the right hardware, call them today! Its more than a liability, though. Inc: What “Chip Cards” Mean for Your Business.
Management: Employees vs Contract Workers
It’s been noted that much of the decrease in the unemployment rate has been the result of more part-time work. The “gig” economy (where people, like bands, have off and on “gigs”) manifested in new phenomena like Uber and Lyft is under scrutiny. A recent case in California re: an Uber driver, and a new (July 2015) U.S. Department of Labor memorandum have begun to clarify the line between independence and employment. IRS 20 Point Checklist for Independent Contractors.
Management: New Overtime Rules Proposed
If you’ve got salaried-exempt employees (i.e. you’re not paying overtime) who makes less than $50,000/year, you’d better get acquainted with the overtime rules proposed by the Department of Labor last month. Here’ a quick summary: Inc Magazine: How the Changes to Overtime Rules will Affect Your Business (http://www.inc.com/jeremy-quittner/department-of-labor-details-on-overtime-changes.html) as well as the DOL’s FAQ page: Dept of Labor: Overtime FAQ’s (http://www.dol.gov/whd/overtime/NPRM2015/faq.htm).. These are just “proposed” at this time, and they are welcoming public comments at www.regulations.gov.
Management: 10 Things to Transform Your Workplace
Laszlo Bock (is that a great name or what?), Google’s SVP of “people operations” comes out with his new book this month, “Work Rules! That Will Transform How You Live and Lead”. Google’s got that reputation for weird interview techniques, free food/cafeterias, great pay and benefits, game rooms, creative time and all sorts of reasons why they get 2 million people each year applying to work there. Maybe there’s some “there” there. Google’s 10 things to transform your team and your workplace