Reading the books you recommend is changing the way I think and work for the better.
Johns, Managing Director
Sample Topgrading Scorecard -- superior to a job description, constructing a scorecard
for a position is the first step in the Topgrading hiring process. Toby Jenkins,
CEO of Australia-based
Bluewire Media, has written an excellent
blog on how to construct a Scorecard along with a sample. And he explains
why his team enjoyed doing the process for each of their jobs. REMEMBER:
Certification as a Topgrading
Practioner is available (every company should have one) - the online classes
start this week with private coaching (go at your own pace) - and 50% discount
for additional executives/managers from the same firm wanting to take the
What NOT to Read -- the biz world has been a buzz about the former CEO of P&G's new book Playing to Win: How Strategy Really Works (love the title). So I grabbed a copy and dug in this past weekend. Wow, I couldn't have been more disappointed. It's definitely not a book for mid-market companies - too vague, too complicated - and it doesn't seem like P&G really had to make the kinds of tough choices the rest of us mere mortals have to make. Plus P&G isn't doing so great right now, so whatever they learned hasn't stuck. The measure of a great CEO is if their predecessor is able to succeed.
Five Questions -- in turn, I love these five key questions upon which the book is based (my interpretation in brackets), but I didn't get any real help figuring these out - there are much better resources, like Bob Bloom's book Inside Advantage (best strategy book I've ever read):
- What is your winning aspiration? (BHAG)
- Where will you play? (Sandbox and Core Customer)
- How will you win? (Michael Porter's differentiated "activities")
- What capabilities must be in place? (Key Thrusts/Capabilities)
- What management systems are required? (this is new)
What Strategy Isn't -- and I thought Lafley did a great job of outlining what strategy is NOT - taken from Fortune's summary of the book:
- Strategy isn't a vision. A vision tells you nothing about how to achieve your goals.
- Strategy isn't a plan. That's just a set of tactics. A recent blog post by Martin called "Don't Let Strategy Become Planning" has gone viral in managerial circles.
- Strategy isn't optimizing the status quo. Getting more efficient is always good, but it's a far cry from a strategy.
- Strategy isn't following best practices. Some managers think getting really good at what the best players are already doing is a strategy. No, say Lafley and Martin: "It is a recipe for mediocrity."
OK, those were the two good parts. Now go re-read Bob Bloom's book
Crowdfund Investing For Dummies -- and a shout out to Sherwood "Woodie" Neiss and his partners who single handedly pushed through crowdfunding legislation in the US and just released a book, Crowdfund Investing for Dummies, helping entrepreneurs prepare for this funding opportunity to publicly raise up to $1 million without filing expensive IPO documents. WARNING: the SEC missed the Dec 31, 2012 deadline for setting the new rules. UGH! Here's a quick update on the situation.
You Already Know How to be Great -- Alan Fine, a top tennis, golf, and executive coach, has written an excellent book on how to get out of your own way. He's found the biggest obstacle to improved performance isn't NOT knowing what to do; it's not doing what you already know. Considered one of the fathers of modern executive-coaching, Alan has created a one-hour online course that outlines his GROW model for peak performance (something he's taught several PGA and Ryder Cup champs as well as top execs at IBM) plus how to have real faith in your own abilities!! Those that have watched the course are already raving about it. However, like all our online courses, there's a full money back guarantee. Watch at your next monthly management meeting or play in the background as you do email.
India and Australia Growth Summits -- I'll be in India next week and Australia the following week for our Growth Summits. Dates and locations below.