culture

How to Create Partnerships Instead of Using Stakeholders

About 20 years ago, I taught a project management workshop to IT people. Their products and services did not ship outside the building—their products and services enabled the organization to make money. During that workshop, the participants all had the same question, “How do we engage our stakeholders?” For years, I explained that the more …

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Work Solo or Collaborate? How to Choose Based on What Benefits You

Work Solo or Collaborate? How to Choose Based on What Benefits You Do you prefer collaborative or solo work? Some of us prefer to work alone because we know how to be effective, even if our work is not independent of everyone else’s work. Or, if we work as part of a workgroup, such as …

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Lay People Off with Congruence to Make Better Business Decisions, Part 4

I don’t know of anyone who likes layoffs. However, they are one tool in your management toolbox. But so many layoffs don’t return the results the managers expect. Worse, the layoffs alienate the previous employees and the survivors. And the customers? If your customers can tell you laid people off, you won’t get the business …

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Acknowledge Everyone’s Emotions for a Congruent Layoff Conversation, Part 3

Any time we mess with people’s money, status, or ability to work, we create emotions—for ourselves and the other person. As managers, when we offer a job or a promotion, those emotions tend to be happy. But layoffs? Those emotions are rarely happy—for anyone. If we try to bury those feelings, we might appear as …

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Create a More Collaborative Leadership Culture with Peer One-on-One Conversations

Too many leaders work solo—and that’s because their managers expect them to do so. However, these managers and leaders often need other leaders across the organization to deliver the necessary work. In that case, one-on-ones can help. These peer one-on-ones can help build trust, clear impediments across the organization, and create allies for change. How …

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Have to Lay People Off? Practice Congruence and First Choose What Not to Do

Your company is planning a layoff, and you’re one of the managers who has to decide and deliver the bad news. What do you say? What do you do? Almost everyone I know who has to do the laying-off feels terrible about that. But you can create a congruent environment and make it possible for …

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What Does Your Culture Value: People “Efficiency” or Work Throughput?

A senior manager said, “We give our resources everything they could need: technology, tools, even some training. Why are they so slow?” I asked, “How many projects are they working on?” “Each resource has at least two projects so they stay productive and efficient.” These managers have created a resource efficiency culture, not a flow …

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Remote Work: Ways to Think About “Fair” Compensation and Benefits

Before the pandemic, Jenny, the VP of Engineering, insisted that the engineering staff needed to work in the Boston area. She expected that people would mostly work in the office, and they did. However, during the pandemic, Jenny changed her mind. She said that as long as teams had sufficient hours of overlap, she didn’t …

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Throughput: Why Salary Costs Matter Less Than You Think They Do

Dan, a VP, knows he needs more people to get the work done. Suzanne, one of the directors, starts to hire and realizes she has several problems. First, their salary bands are too low—candidates want more money. In addition, the people want to collaborate more than the existing people seem to. She meets with Dan …

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