Pilot Projects Create Big Successes

Want to produce results fast, minimize risk of failure, perfect a concept and create demand for more?   Pick a pilot, improve results and replicate. Increasingly, organizations are adopting surgical approaches to improving performance, focusing on targeted segments (a branch office, manufacturing plant, laboratory, sales territory, or distribution center), making significant shifts quickly, creating stories around… Read more

Touch Screen TVs Don’t Fix Safety

I conducted a communication assessment of an under-performing operation inside a larger company. It has a poor safety record and is missing its quality, service-delivery, productivity and cost goals. Employee retention rates are poor. The assessment revealed no core communication process managed by the leadership. People throughout the operation complained about disconnected, often-conflicting information that… Read more

Leaders: Are You Harboring Bullies?

My client held back tears as she explained to me how a powerful woman in the so-called C-Suite humiliated her in front of her employees. “Jim, you wouldn’t believe how she challenged everything I said–even common sense–and facts that she knew were true but wouldn’t admit it,” my client told me. “It was awful, just… Read more

Amanda

I’ve had the honor of mentoring many people during my career as a consultant.  Amanda was 23 when we worked at her company’s Kansas City manufacturing plant. Our mandate was to help a new plant leader turn the operation around. The plant’s culture was autocratic. “My way or the highway.” Plant management and its two… Read more

Three Simple Secrets Successful Trusted Advisors Know

I spoke to a conference in Baltimore a few weeks ago about the role of a trusted advisor. I was asked to share what I’ve learned over 30-plus years working with a governor, a couple of congressional candidates, a ton of CEOs, including former GE chairman Jack Welch, and a myriad of operations leaders in… Read more

A Story about Leaders, People and a Huge Win!

Regular Leadership Report readers know I’m more than a little obsessed with improving the numbers. I’m inherently an operations guy who likes to help people improve what they do–and make the improvements stick. That said, I just got some of the best news I’ve received in more than 30 years of consulting. A senior leader… Read more