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jerryking : obstacles   11

Is There A Catfish In Your Tank?
Sep 13, 2017 | Center for Performance Improvement | by Jeff Crume

One of life’s most important lessons on how to handle those who oppose you.........After studying the cod fish someone discovered that their natural enemy was the catfish. This time when the cod fish were put in the tanks, they placed a few catfish in with them. Those catfish chased the cod fish all the way across the country to the west coast.
This time when the cod fish were prepared, they were flaky and had the same flavor as they did when they were caught fresh and prepared on the east coast. You see, the catfish kept the cod from becoming stale......our opponent, our catfish, is there for one purpose only: to make us better, stronger, and wiser. .......Don’t Wish For Easy
Don’t wish things were easier, wish you were better, and if it’s hard then go do it hard. And remember, if you wake up today to discover a catfish in your tank, don’t panic; just keep doing what you do best. It’s there on an assignment to keep you from becoming stale.
The most dangerous person will be "the eel." The authors insist that "in every deal, and at every prospect's table, there is always an eel – a person who is against the deal. Always. Eels have a tendency to hang out in the shadows. They are hard to get to, and they usually talk you down when you're not around."

Usually eels are driven by fear that they don't want to acknowledge, so instead they insist they are against the deal on principle. They are dangerous, and must be identified early. Then you can try to co-opt them, taking the eel's ideas and baking them into your proposal.
adversity  eels  hard_times  inspiration  life_lessons  obstacles  resistance  self-improvement 
9 weeks ago by jerryking
Where Women Fall Behind at Work: The First Step Into Management - WSJ
Oct. 15, 2019 | WSJ | By Vanessa Fuhrmans.

Long before bumping into any glass ceiling, many women run into obstacles trying to grasp the very first rung of the management ladder—and not because they are pausing their careers to raise children—a new, five-year landmark study shows. As a result, it’s early in many women’s careers, not later, when they fall dramatically behind men in promotions, blowing open a gender gap that then widens every step up the chain...... fix that broken bottom rung of the corporate ladder, and companies could reach near-parity all the way up to their top leadership roles within a generation.....“Bias still gets in the way—bias of who you know, who’s like you, or who performs and operates the same way you perform and operate, whose style is more similar.....Employers’ moves to diversify their most senior echelons could provide a road map.....“We’ve seen that if companies really put their minds to it, they can bring about change that matters,” Ms. Thomas says. “If they can apply the same extra elbow grease that they do at the top to the broken rung.........The numbers show that the first step is the steepest for women. But why is that? What’s holding women back from climbing that first rung into management?

It isn’t for lack of ambition..... while many employers have increased their efforts to groom and elevate more senior women—a smaller, select group—fewer have applied the same rigor to cultivating more junior female managers....The upshot: At nearly every career stage, the disparities between men and women have narrowed only marginally since the Women in the Workplace research began in 2015. Even in industries with largely female entry-level workforces, such as retail and health care, men come to dominate the management ranks—a phenomenon that Haig Nalbantian, a labor economist and co-leader of consulting firm Mercer LLC’s Workforce Sciences Institute, calls “the flip.......even in many “female-friendly” sectors, entry-level women still tend to get hired into jobs with limited upward mobility, such as bank tellers or customer-service staff. ..“When companies ask, ‘What’s the one thing we can do systemically?’ we say, ‘It’s not quotas, it’s not targets,’” says Mr. Nalbantian. “It’s about how do you position women and minorities to succeed in the roles that are likely to lead to higher-level positions.”......The takeaway for some women is that they have to assemble their own career ladder.....To secure a sponsor, “you’ve got to consistently perform, have a strong brand and deliver. That’s just table stakes,” she says. “But a lot of people do that and might still not move, because they don’t have the right support.”
barriers_to_entry  biases  coaching  diversity  entry-level  female-friendly  glass_ceilings  gender_gap  management  movingonup  obstacles  sponsorships  takeaways  talent_pipelines  up-and-comers  women  workforce  workplaces 
october 2019 by jerryking
Overcoming adversity: In the footsteps of polar explorer Shackleton
December 22, 2018 | Financial Times | by Sarah Gordon.

In 2013 Tim Jarvis, an adventurer and environmental scientist, re-enacted Sir Ernest Shackleton’s 1916 epic journey, sailing a replica of his boat 1,500km across the Southern Ocean from Antarctica, where Shackleton’s men were stranded for more than a year, to South Georgia island, then climbing over its mountainous interior to the site of the whaling station where Shackleton finally found help.....Mr Jarvis’ team used the same rudimentary equipment, clothing, rations and technology as had been used a century earlier......Jarvis' Shackleton expedition, like the original, hit numerous hurdles:
(1) loss of a sponsor;
(2) a gruelling sea leg of their journey, navigating storms and treacherous currents to reach South Georgia;
(3) three of the six team members had trench foot and some frostbite and were unable to embark on the next phase, the mountain climb across the island.

Jarvis coped by “trying to take a leaf out of Shackleton’s book”, keeping people busy, staying completely focused himself and “not even entertaining” the thought of stopping. He and the other lead climber, former Marine Baz Gray, isolated themselves in order to stop others’ negativity clouding their judgment before tackling the mountains ahead. There were no rows, says Mr Jarvis, but there were tears......“If you feel that at some level the risk and the fear are worth it, you will overcome it.”.....Choosing the right team for a challenge as extreme as this required unorthodox methods. For Mr Jarvis, the best team is about people whose skills complement one another rather than just the best individuals. But he also needed to make sure that team members could really do what they said they could....You don't want “employees”. “When the chips are down, you want someone who feels that they’ve invested a lot in [the expedition] and it’s theirs . . . ”Jarvis believes the expedition taught him how to set a positive example, how to recognise which buttons to press to get people to apply themselves more, and how to deal with “multi-dimensional” challenges, not just physical, but reputational and financial. “On the sea I wasn’t the best sailor. On the land I wasn’t the best climber. All you’ve got is your leadership, your conviction that you can pull it off, your bloody-minded determination to continue.”
adversity  Antartica  Ernest_Shackleton  expeditions  explorers  leadership  multidimensional  negativity_bias  obstacles  pessimism  teams  re-enactments  selection_processes  South_Pole  torchbearers  unorthodox 
december 2018 by jerryking
Boost your sales with tips from Warren Buffett

How to Close a Deal Like Warren Buffett
By Tom Searcy and Henry DeVries
(McGraw-Hill, 217 pages, $24.95)

The authors recommend a process they call "the triples" that will help you make the case for your product or service:

Triple 1: The prospect's three problems

First, find out – and write down – the three biggest problems the prospect faces in the area your product or service can help. This aligns you with the buyer's interests.

Triple 2: Your three-part solution

Now think carefully about how you can solve each problem. As you write it out for the client, remember that generic language such as "improved," "better," and "big difference" are not that compelling. Use actual numbers and refer to specific pressure points to focus on the outcomes your prospect can expect.

Triple 3: Your three references

The third step is to identify at least three references you can share who have experienced similar outcomes when using your products and services. This may be sensitive, given confidentiality and competitive issues. But the authors stress: "The most effective way to get the attention of prospects is to drop the names of others just like them."

The authors urge you to become a student of psychology and develop profiles of members of the prospect's team. Try to determine each person's fears, since those qualms may send your pitch into the ditch. Determine each person's point of view about your solution, as well as any other personal trait or event that might be of importance. At the same time, study the team dynamics, from where people sit around the table to who they defer to.

The most dangerous person will be "the eel." The authors insist that "in every deal, and at every prospect's table, there is always an eel – a person who is against the deal. Always. Eels have a tendency to hang out in the shadows. They are hard to get to, and they usually talk you down when you're not around."

Usually eels are driven by fear that they don't want to acknowledge, so instead they insist they are against the deal on principle. They are dangerous, and must be identified early. Then you can try to co-opt them, taking the eel's ideas and baking them into your proposal.
aligned_interests  books  deal-making  eels  enterprise_clients  Harvey_Schachter  indispensable  JCK  management_consulting  obstacles  pitches  problems  problem_solving  psychology  references  salesmanship  solutions  tips  think_threes  Warren_Buffett 
august 2017 by jerryking
Canada’s biggest obstacle to innovation is attitude - The Globe and Mail
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Sunday, Apr. 30, 2017
innovation  obstacles  Canada 
may 2017 by jerryking
Malcolm Gladwell explains how being the underdog can give people a leg up
Oct. 05 2013 | The Globe and Mail | JARED BLAND.

Malcolm Gladwell's latest hypothesis is quite simple: What if being disadvantaged, being an underdog, is actually an advantage? As usual, Mr. Gladwell illustrates his argument with lots of fascinating studies and charming stories. But, unlike his previous books, David and Goliath feels especially resonant, perhaps because it arrives at a moment – of income inequality, government shutdowns, the Tea Party, the Occupy movement – when disadvantage is an ever-present reality.

Your book abounds with convincing and moving stories that demonstrate your central points. But there must be lots of exceptions – students who did really well in tiny classrooms, or dyslexics whose lives are constant struggles. What lessons did you learn from them?

The interesting question is what distinguishes the people who overcome adversity from the people who don’t. A lot of it has to do with the magnitude of the adversity. With the stories of the dyslexics who made it, they’re all intelligent people from middle-class homes. You’re not looking at people who have multiple sources of disadvantage. They have one basic source of disadvantage. Every single one of the successful dyslexics I talked to had one person in their life, at least, who always believed in them – their grandmother, a teacher along the way. They all came back to this one person. So that’s also a minimum condition for making it: You can’t have seven problems, obstacles. When you look at those who don’t make it, what you see is the multiplication of problems, the severity of problems.
interviews  Malcolm_Gladwell  underdogs  books  disadvantages  adversity  dyslexics  grit  multiple_stressors  obstacles 
october 2013 by jerryking
Excerpt: Buy-In: Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down
October 8, 2010 | BusinessWeek | In an edited excerpt from
their new book, John Kotter and Lorne Whitehead introduce a
counterintuitive approach to turning skeptics into advocates for your
new idea, plan, or proposal....The true buying-in of a new idea is about
winning over hearts and minds--it is an emotional commitment. The
single biggest challenge faced when obtaining buy-in for a good idea is
getting people's attention. Don't try to overcome attacks with tons of
data or logic. Instead, do what might seem to be the opposite. Keep
responses short and above all, RESPECTFUL. Goal is to "win" the thoughts
and feelings of the majority, not the 1 or 2 critics so watch the crowd
very carefully. Don't try to wing it, even if you know all the facts
thoroughly, even if the idea seems bulletproof, and even if you expect a
friendly audience. Preparation can significantly build confidence and
reduce anxiety.
resistance  obstacles  excerpts  HBS  persuasion  John_Kotter  howto  ideas  books  Communicating_&_Connecting  pitches  life_skills  Managing_Your_Career  attention  attention_spans  preparation  emotional_commitment  self-confidence  buy-in  counterintuitive  skeptics  the_single_most_important 
march 2011 by jerryking
Understanding change in a business
The Globe and Mail. Seventy per cent of big changes in a company fail; John Kotter explains why

The Kotter model

In the 90s Harvard-professor John P. Kotter had been observing this process for almost 30 years. In his book Leading Change he argues that to make big changes significantly and effectively, there are generally eight basic things that must happen:

INSTILL A SENSE OF URGENCY. Identifying existing or potential crises or opportunities. Confronting reality, in the words of Execution-authors, Charan and Bossidy.
BUILD A GUIDING COALITION. Assembling a strong guiding coalition with enough power to lead the change effort. And make them work as a team, not a committee!
CREATE A VISION AND SUPPORTING STRATEGIES. We need a clear sense of purpose and direction. In less successful situations you generally find plans and budgets, but no vision and strategy; or the strategies are so superficial that they have no credibility.
COMMUNICATE. As many people as possible need to hear the mandate for change loud and clear, with messages sent out consistently and often. Forget the boring memos that nobody reads! Try using videos, speeches, kick-off meetings, workshops in small units, etc. Also important is the teaching of new behaviours by the example of the guiding coalition
REMOVE OBSTACLES. Get rid of anything blocking change, like bosses stuck in the old ways or lack of information systems. Encourage risk-taking and non-traditional ideas, activities, and actions. Empowerment is moving obstacles out of peoples' way so they can make something happen, once they've got the vision clear in their heads.
CREATE SOME QUICK WINS. This is essential for creating momentum and providing sufficient credibility to pat the hard-working people on the back and to diffuse the cynics. Remember to recognize and reward employees involved in the improvements.
KEEP ON CHANGING. After change organizations get rolling and have some wins, they don't stop there. They go back and make wave after wave of other actions necessary for long-term, significant change. Successful change leaders don't drop the sense of urgency. On top of that, they are very systematic about figuring out all of the pieces they need to have in place before they declare victory.
MAKE CHANGE STICK. The last big step is nailing big change to the floor and making sure it sticks. And the way things stick is through culture. If you can create a totally new culture around some new way of managing, it will stay. It won't live on if it is dependent on one boss or a couple of enthusiastic people who will eventually move on.


We can divide these eight steps in three main processes. The first four steps focus on de-freezing the organization. The next three steps make change happen. The last step re-freezes the organization on the next rung on the ladder.

Kotter avoids any discussion re how this high level approach ties into Project Management. Anderson & Anderson (The Change Leaders Roadmap) adopt a similar high level approach however do tie it into the lower level by adding in a lot of trad. PM items.
backlash  John_Kotter  organizational_change  change_management  urgency  Communicating_&_Connecting  roadmaps  change_agents  risk-taking  obstacles  obstructionism  entrenchment  quick_wins  non-traditional  shared_consciousness  momentum  operational_tempo  project_management  action_plans  eels  emotional_commitment  buy-in  resistance 
october 2010 by jerryking
Managing Yourself: How to Save Good Ideas
September 2010 | - Harvard Business Review | An Interview with
John P. Kotter by Jeff Kehoe. Why do so many good ideas generated by
well-intentioned, talented people fail? Because the audience is
comprised of human beings with anxieties, contrary opinions, and a
constant fear of losing face....large-scale organizational change
requires helping people to communicate, bringing them around to support
your vision, your strategy, your plan—and, in a smaller sense, just your
idea. It's an important element and we’re not very good at it. Getting
buy-in for good ideas is a basic human issue; it’s a life
skill....Kotter & Whitehead, suggest in their new book, Buy-In:
Saving Your Good Idea from Getting Shot Down, a counterintuitive
approach to gaining support: “inviting in the lions” to critique the
idea....anticipate being attacked when presenting a new idea, respond
with respectful using very short, simple, clear, communications filled
with common sense.
backlash  buy-in  Communicating_&_Connecting  failure  HBR  howto  human_factor  human_frailties  ideas  implementation  John_Kotter  large-scale  life_skills  Managing_Your_Career  obstacles  organizational_change  persuasion  pitches  resistance 
september 2010 by jerryking

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