When organisations make large cost cutting initiatives traditionally the number of women being reduced is significantly higher than the number of men. The Australian Bureau of Statistics identified that women in Victoria lost jobs at four times the rate of men in July. If this proportion of job loss continues to skew against women we will face a gender disaster. We’ve got job losses at nearly five times the rate of men, and those women are not going to be able to return to work easily. Tanja Kovac, GenVic McKinsey have calculated that women’s jobs are 1.8 times more vulnerable than men’s jobs. Women make up 39% of global employment but equate to 54% of overall job losses. One of the main reasons is that the virus has placed a significant increase in the burden of unpaid care which is largely carried out by women. The global impact of this biasContinue Reading

Emotional Intelligence is the ability to understand and use your own empathy and emotions in positive ways to relieve stress, communicate efficiently and empathise with others to over come challenges and defuse conflict. Conversations always start out with small talk, and so often we revert back to a basic question something like “Hi, how are you?”. The social convention is that we often start a conversation asking this generic question and potentially don’t even wait for the answer. Researchers at Harvard Business School analyzed hundreds of conversations to determine what kinds of questions led to better reactions. The findings established that people who ask deeper more interested questions were better liked by those they were having conversations with. It also noted that individuals using this technique were rated as having a higher interpersonal construct of listening validation and care. Authentic conversations are grounded in asking a question that you care about listeningContinue Reading

Employer Values – When you look for the right job match you often consider the culture fit, but what about the value fit? An emerging term for recruitment organisations is Employee Value Proposition which captures more fully that total fit between what you stand for and what the organisation represents. Culture determines how work gets done, but values sets how a companies makes decisions, establishes priorities and represents deeper ethical qualities. “Ensuring that a company shares your values from the outset is a threefold process: First, you need to identify your own core values; next, ask the right questions during the interview process; and finally, conduct your own assessment to see if your values match those of the organization.” Kristi Hedges Divergent values may be minor and irritating such as an organisation that accepts meetings starting late if you value punctuality. Or the divergence could be more serious where yourContinue Reading

Cultural Innovation is not just about building a better mousetrap, rather it is driven by deeply connecting customers with a brands ideology, which in turn has transformed the the value proposition and reinvented the category. Why is innovation so hard? Why do companies who have have incredibly talented teams struggle to innovate and create a sustainable innovative new product? This article explores the challenges with large corporate innovation. Procter & Gamble a company renowned for driving what it refers to as ‘constructive disruption’ has designed a process that aligns closely to a startup with venture funding, support from tech entrepreneurs and a lean probe and learn prototyping process. But even with this best in class approach to corporate innovation the process is not exactly delivering huge results – the most recent P&G offering was a ‘Smart Pampers Diaper’ (nappy) that signals a change is needed! “Build a better mousetrap, andContinue Reading

Innovation is built using well proven methodologies, however it requires more than an effective process to motivate and inspire the imagination of an innovation team. The right leadership is central to any innovation teams success and if not managed carefully leader and team identity blocks innovation. People and particularly leadership are a very important part of a successful innovation culture and the most effective innovators need to master cultural change. A recent Harvard Business Review case study illustrates this point, Pixel a division of Deloitte Consulting provide teams of on demand talent to support client engagements. Pixel enables their clients with resources who have critical and in demand skills such as AI, Machine Learning and Data Analytics. So it is a business that is providing access to hard to find expertise and collaborating on innovation and new product development. However despite the successful completion of many projects there is still significantContinue Reading

With the dual pressures of the pandemic and the economic crisis, many executives are challenged dealing with the constant increase in new challenges that appear every day. Many leaders claim that with all this going on they have no time for strategy and planning, often using the excuse that this is a ‘Black Swan event’. The concept of a Black Swan event (a term coined by Wall Street trade Nassim Nicholas Taleb in his 2001 book ‘Fooled by Randomness‘) is an event that is unpredictable, has severe and widespread consequences, and after the event people will rationalise as being predictable (hindsight bias). Previous events that have been broadly defined as Black Swan include: The 1997 Asian Financial Crisis The “Dotcom” Crash  9/11 Attacks The 2008 Global Financial Crisis Brexit Author Michele Wucker describes the current situation not as a Black Swan but rather as “Grey Rhino”. The Rhino phenomenon isContinue Reading

The Avocado Leader is a new term coined to reflect a change in management behaviours during the pandemic. The Avocado Leader has a soft and empathetic exterior with a hard business core. Academics from Macquarie Business School together with management consultancy We Are Unity conducted research interviewing senior and mid level executives from ASX200 firms about how management has changed during the pandemic and the impact of COVID19 restrictions. Key findings show the crisis has been a catalyst for transformation in the way that people work, increasing focus on mental health, introduction of flexible and smarter ways of working and the acceleration of digital disruption to future proof the business. The survey found that during the COVID 63% of leaders identified a boost to productivity 57% saw improved collaboration 55% saw improved efficiency 87% believed their organisation was agile in response to the pandemic 74% attributed improved performance to theContinue Reading

The best opportunity for your startup survival in a recession and pandemic is to avoid making rash decisions. This article provides some tactics and strategies to manage during these difficult times Minimise There is every chance that when the pandemic hit your revenues reduced substantially. Which may well have sent you looking for funding sources to help you cover the shortfall. Before you seek out any more money from VCs or Investors consider all the costs that you can cut, reconsider the minimum viable product you are offering and what your customers really value. Skinny it all down to ride through the tough times with a plan. Switch If your business is struggling is there an alternative side of the service coin that you can deliver. An example of this is how Israel were world leaders in building Cyber Weapons but then many of the same workers moved to buildContinue Reading

How to manage anxiety – The pandemic, recession and uncertainty has increased the level of stress and anxiety most people are feeling. Anxiety is fed watered and sustained by the presence of fear, it is such a negative and primal emotion. Designed to keep us safe it can overwhelm our thoughts and emotions. “Anxiety is created when you move into the unknown because your fear response is on high alert. Has your fear produced anxiety because there’s a genuine risk? Or has the fear produced anxiety and panic because you’ve moved into your discomfort zone?“ 1. Stop it at the beginning Fear can trigger physical responses like a racing pulse, high blood pressure or a cold sweat, or it can trigger an emotional response like aggression. Many people are more comfortable with anger over anxiety so they choose it as a way to alleviate the pressure. The problem is behaviourContinue Reading

This article looks at the different type of power that management use in leadership positions, positional power and personal power. “The most effective leaders appear to exhibit a degree of versatility and flexibility that enables them to adapt their behavior to the changing and contradictory demands made on them Ralph Stogdill (The Leadership Handbook) It is not enough for a leader to just have different styles of behaviour, to be effective they must be able to adapt their style to different situations and the needs of stakeholders and employees. Beyond the style of behaviour every leader needs to be able to assess how that specific style of behaviour impacts others, knowing exactly how they are using the power in the relationship in that circumstance and at that point in time. “While leadership is about the process of influencing people, power can be described as a leader’s influence potential.” The effective delegationContinue Reading