Dealing with brilliant jerks, the tool to figure your next 10 years, calendar tips and employee trust
6th March 2022 Evolution Partners Newsletter
“True humility is not thinking less of yourself. It is thinking of yourself less.” — C.S. Lewis
Hope you’re Thriving!
It’s been a busy week for me with two workshops, another session on Made to Thrive and building job scorecards with leadership teams. It was great to get the feedback from last week’s YPO Sydney speaking event, which rated at 9.6, and all but one participant rated it extremely relevant to meeting their business or personal needs.
Employees Are Sick of Being Asked to Make Moral Compromises
One of the key concepts I discuss in Made to Thrive is the Employee Promise. This concept draws on the idea that you need to treat your employees like you treat your customers.
This week, I came across an interesting Harvard Business Review article that talks about moral compromises that employees are being asked to make and how that’s a problem affecting trust.
From the article:
“Just say whatever you need to say to get them to stay. We can’t lose any more techs, or we’ll have to announce huge delays on the launch. I’m holding you accountable for making sure that doesn’t happen.” Brian,* an executive Ron coached, told him about this ultimatum he’d received from his boss. He explained that the project had been under-resourced, people were exhausted from working under impossible deadlines, and he felt ashamed of the corners he feared had been cut to meet them.
Now, being asked to manipulate and lie to his people crossed the line for Brian. Despite feeling guilty for abandoning his team, he resigned. Ironically, Brian’s boss was shocked by his resignation. Reminding him of his high salary, perks, and multiple promotions, he asked Brian, “What else do you want? ”What Brian experienced was what medical doctors and social scientists refer to as “moral injury,” and what he wanted was justice.
The article continues, “Many people in the workplace are hurting. They yearn for a sense of humanity and community to be part of their work experience. And they need leaders who will help protect, honor, and strengthen their personal values and moral center, not put them into positions where they feel forced to compromise or abandon them. Five years from now, when those you lead today speak about their most important values, will their morally centered convictions have grown because of you, or despite you?”
Read the article here Employees Are Sick of Being Asked to Make Moral Compromises
How to Figure Out Where You’ll Be In 10 Years
This week I also came across this interesting excerpt from the book Competing in the New World of Work: How Radical Adaptability Separates the Best from the Rest by Keith Ferrazzi. Here’s a part of that article.
“SUCCESSFUL PEOPLE, and successful companies, tend to follow a similar path: The changes they make from year to year seem orderly, but over decades, the changes can take on an unexpected, nonlinear shape. For example, I began my career as an entry-level analyst at Deloitte. Now I run a thriving growth-coaching business.
The leap directly from one to the other seems absurd, and looking back, I couldn’t have foreseen or planned it. But broken down into smaller steps, it makes sense: One job led to another, and an opportunity here created a logical new opportunity there. This is the magic of uncertainty: Our paths are forged in satisfying but unknowable ways. But it can be hard to know what to do with this knowledge—because nobody likes to feel adrift, and especially not entrepreneurs.
Leaders shouldn’t be content to just see where things go. They don’t leave their businesses to chance. They want to anticipate changes, plan for the unexpected, and plot a course into tomorrow. Is any of that possible? Nobody can predict the future, of course, but I have found a tactic that I believe gives leaders the best possible chance. It comes from John Hagel, the retired co-chairman of Deloitte’s Center for the Edge, and he calls it Zooming Out and Zooming In.
With this exercise, John invites leaders to take leaps of imagination in which growth is nonsequential and exponential—very different from traditional, linear, do-this-and-then-that, three-year growth-planning projections.
The exercise also helps your team develop a shared long-term vision and a road map for making decisions. Having run a number of clients through this exercise, I’ve found that the results can be transformative. So, as you look toward your own unknowable future, I suggest Zooming Out and Zooming In. You might see your next big shift before it arrives.
The exercise begins by asking two key Zoom Out questions:
- What will our industry look like in 10 years’ time?
- What kind of company do we need to become to succeed in that future?
You don’t have to answer these questions yourself. They can be answered at a strategic planning meeting with your team or over a period of time. You also don’t need to limit this exercise to your team; you should involve anyone who can help you construct this vision. It may be useful to consult with specialists in certain technical areas to help your team think through various scenarios involving your industry’s long-term trajectory.
Once you have your answers, it’s time to start preparing for that future. Of course, you can’t just throw out today’s version of your company. But you can start testing your hypothesis and building toward that future—giving yourself the greatest chance to catch a wave of growth.”
The article explains the keys to the zoom in and zoom out idea and provides various other examples. Apple news users can continue reading the article here How to Figure Out Where You’ll Be In 10 Years
Outlook calendar tips and tricks
This week I came across a fantastic 16-minute video for anyone who regularly uses Microsoft Outlook calendar. Possibly like you, I use Outlook many times every day, but when I came across this video from Kevin Stratvert, a former Microsoft engineer, I learned some excellent new tools for managing my calendar. For example, set meeting times using natural language, view your calendar and mail side-by-side, create meetings or appointments from email, and many more.
Enjoy the video here 14 best calendar tips and tricks in Microsoft Outlook
This week on The Growth Whisperers podcast
The brilliant jerk is a phrase that was made famous in the Netflix culture deck, and is also known as a toxic A player. The brilliant jerk refers to people on your team who are highly productive in their role, but they don’t fit. They don’t align with the behaviours or core values and they come at a high cost to the team.
We talk about methods to deal with brilliant jerks, and the tools that are available to prevent them being such a jerk, and how to handle it if your efforts to manage brilliant jerks fail.
The Brilliant Jerk
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