Workplace Wisdom

30 Aug 2016

Support Your Frontline and Improve Customer Loyalty

“It’s not my fault!” the assistant practically wailed. “She never gave me the paperwork!” The poor woman was almost begging me not to be angry at her, and to put the blame in its rightful place — on the boss who hadn’t provided the paperwork that should have been ready for me. It was clear that she had been in this situation numerous times before, and that, unfortunately for her, previous customers had not responded with patience and forbearance. This […]

23 Aug 2016

10 Unexpected Lessons: Launching My New Website

As a professional, get-things-done type, I pictured my rebranding and website relaunch project like this: plan the project, hire and supervise providers, deal with occasional setbacks, and be generally pleased with the result four to six months later. That’s not how it worked out. It took three copywriters, four photographers, and three different design groups — and over three years. I needed to get it wrong — repeatedly — to learn how to get it right. Yearnings and Learnings I […]

16 Aug 2016

Advice on How to Make a Case to Senior Leaders

I just heard from a middle manager who vented about her senior leaders’ lack of response after she made them aware of certain problems. She wondered if there were better ways to explain challenging circumstances or to present unwelcome information. First we discussed some of the possible reasons that her managers might actually disagree with her, their various alternative perspectives, and whether she isn’t privy to other information that they’re using to decide what is — or isn’t — important. […]

09 Aug 2016

How to Screen Out a Star to Save the Team

In the recent Harvard Business Review article “How Facebook Tries to Prevent Office Politics,” Jay Parikh, Facebook’s global head of engineering and infrastructure, advises against hiring “empire builders, self-servers, and whiners” — even if they’re also smart, skilled, and experienced people. How sensible! And how strategic! Organizations always need competent people who care about growth and progress, know how to focus attention, and can play the “squeaky wheel” when an important issue needs attention. But they can’t afford employees who […]

 

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