Some days ago, I was skiing for the last time this season (in Tignes/France), in full sun and with a lot of snow. I myself am a passionate skier who "comes down" pretty much every slope – the black steep moguls - with a bit more fight and less elegance.
During one of the descents, an analogy with corporate culture came to my mind: it's just that most skiers master blue slopes (the easy ones) with great safety and routine. With red ones (for advanced skiers), you usually have to concentrate a little, and the black steep mogul slope (for expert skiers) sometimes demands everything from you.
Isn't it the same in companies? They have various people who easily descend the blue slopes day in and day out, while some people take the red one. But the challenge of a black runway comes to few people's minds: it's exhausting, pushes you to your limits, and carries a certain risk with it.
Recently, I watched the film, The Post, from Steven Spielberg and took some lessons that are crucial insights for any leader.
Not only do Meryl Streep and Tom Hanks perform extraordinarily well, but they also highlight the dilemma of a serious decision, with two strong alternatives, under great time pressure. In the end, the film is about freedom of the press, but that is not my point here.
When the Washington Post publisher Katharine Graham makes her most important decision with global impact within a few hours (in the end minutes), the same factors you see with every small business decision come into play: diverging interests, uncertainty, and values.
I must admit, sometimes, I doubt whether what I contribute to companies as principles of success really works. But the clear answer is: YES!
Why do I know that? Because I see the evidence at events, namely when business leaders - from any industry - report on why they are outstandingly successful. This was recently the case at the KMU SWISS Forum in Switzerland.
Let's keep it short today: Happy Easter! I hope you have a great time with your loved ones and do what you enjoy the most.
In principle, one would think that anyone who has once been successful should also remain successful. Although we are used to seeing people and companies again and again whose success suddenly turns into the opposite, we rarely understand the true reasons behind it.
The question is highly relevant to everyone at all times.
Here's the simple answer: we often forget to keep doing the things that originally made us successful. We believe that success happens "automatically" at some point. The opposite is also true.
Success must be regained every day!
Do you want to boost your sales without such dubious measures like price discounts? Then invest in your company's sales skills.
The reason is often that management doesn't see (or want to believe) the connection between sales skills and success. Most B2B sales people know more about the technology of their products than how to communicate their value to their customers. Change that!
It has long been clear that the boundary between internal and external communication in organizations no longer exists. Assume that what you communicate internally is also known externally.
(A similar phenomenon: what you say to yourself always causes exactly what you convey to others. Whether you like it or not, you are consistent: your thoughts determine your actions.)
Back to corporate communication: The question is, how do you deal with it? Are you afraid, preferring to withhold all information? Or are you brave enough to go on the offensive and share your "stories"?
It is clear that the latter is winning in the market. This requires courage and, very often, a questioning of paradigms on the "management level".
Yeah, I know that doesn't concern you. And yet you surely know people from your surroundings who have a huge problem with it. What am I talking about?
Sure, that’s not you! Or is it? Sometimes? Here's the truth: EVERYBODY is sometimes unreliable. Some rarely, some more often, others almost always (you can at least rely on their unreliability!)
Reliability means that you keep ALL promises and inform others in advance of any necessary (!) changes. You may think it's very simple, and that everyone should be reliable.
Well, I am always amazed that an estimated 50 percent of business people I know are regularly unreliable, with corresponding negative effects on performance. Examples:
Let us assume that you want to achieve something in the future that you do not yet have. You may want to be someone who you are not today (often a prerequisite for the former). Or maybe you want to do more good for other people than today.
You don't even have to quote the usual "suspects" like Elon Musk, Steve Jobs or Richard Branson. Anyone who achieves significantly more in due course than others will have "extreme" standards in terms of what is possible.
I repeat it over and over again - you CAN achieve much more if you apply tougher standards.
What do you think about Elon Musk, the Olympic Games, and the world economy? The past few weeks have been a good opportunity to reflect on what we want to see and what we don't want to see.
Back to the above examples:
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