Leadership Reading to Start Your Week: 2/9/15

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Here are choice articles on hot leadership topics culled from the business schools, the business press and major consulting firms, to start off your work week. I’m pointing you to articles about leadership, strategy, industries, innovation, women and work, and work and learning now and in the future. Highlights include find out if your leadership style is right for the digital age, why the Ford CEO thinks that new business models threaten all carmakers, getting big impact from big data, the unfulfilled promise of the Crock-Pot, defining the modern work week, and using data ti call the shots. Plus Kaan Turnali on business intelligence and Tim O’Reilly on the Internet of Things.

Be sure to look for dots that you can connect.

Note: Some links require you to register or are to publications that have some form of limited paywall.

Thinking about Leadership and Strategy

From Kellogg: Using Data to Call the Shots

“Daryl Morey loves good data, and lots of it. As general manager of the Houston Rockets, the Northwestern graduate has made a name for himself with his devotion to using data analytics to make team decisions—everything from where to shoot from on the floor to whom to acquire in a mid-season trade. Morey talks with Kellogg Insight about the importance of assembling a staff that understands analytics, how to ensure you are using the data wisely, and the need to always keep your eye on the prize when crunching the numbers.”

From Wharton: Is Your Leadership Style Right for the Digital Age?

“Advancement in digital technologies has disrupted everything, including leadership styles, according to Barry Libert, Jerry Wind and Megan Beck Fenley. Employees want more ownership rather than to follow instruction; customers want to participate in the marketing and development process; and leaders are finding that open and agile organizations are able to maneuver more effectively than organizations where ‘all insight and direction comes from the top. In short, the autocratic Commander, whether brilliant or misguided, just won’t cut it anymore,’ they write in this opinion piece.”

From Kaan Turnali: BI Does Not Guarantee Better Decisions, Only Better-Informed Decisions

“In my blog, What is Business Intelligence? (BI), I talked about faster, better-informed decision making. I want to expand on these two key pieces. What does it mean when we say ‘faster’ decision making? And why do we say ‘better-informed’ decisions instead of ‘better decisions?'”

Industries and Analysis

From David Shaffer: Ethanol industry gets its own biotech corn

“Some ethanol makers are cheering a new biotech corn engineered strictly to produce biofuel. Six Midwestern ethanol plants now use the hybrid called Enogen, the first corn genetically enhanced for ethanol production. Seven other ethanol makers, including Chippewa Valley Ethanol Co. in Benson, Minn., are trying it out.”

From Reuters: Ford CEO: New business models threaten all carmakers

“Ford Motor Co. Chief Executive Mark Fields said carmakers faced the challenge of avoiding becoming dependent on someone else’s business model as companies from new industries increasingly enter the auto trade.”

From Warren Shoulberg: Homeless in America

“The home furnishings business should be hitting…well, home runs right now. The only thing is that it’s not: a couple of bloop singles at best.”

Innovations and Technology

From David Court: Getting big impact from big data

“New technology tools are making adoption by the front line much easier, and that’s accelerating the organizational adaptation needed to produce results.”

From Quentin Hardy: Tim O’Reilly Explains the Internet of Things

“Tim O’Reilly has been at the cutting edge of the Internet since it went commercial. In fact, he helped take it there: In August 1993 he released the Global Network Navigator, a web page containing information, catalogs and a marketplace, which may have been the first site with advertising.”

From Jackie Barretta: Pursuing Mastery Sparks Workplace Innovation

“Single-minded pursuit of efficiency can short-change a manufacturer’s innovation efforts. Instead, encourage your employees to become masters of their jobs.”

Women and the Workplace

From Max Ehrenfreund: The unfulfilled promise of the Crock-Pot, an unlikely symbol of women’s equality

“The history of the slow cooker, whose sales have been booming recently, reflects a still-raging debate about how consumer appliances have changed — and failed to change — the gender balance at home as well as at work.”

From Dorothy Dalton: Unconscious bias dries up the tech talent pipeline

“How do you know what you are good at or passionate about if you have no knowledge or experience of it?”

From Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant: Madam C.E.O., Get Me a Coffee

“The sad reality in workplaces: Women help more but benefit less from it.”

Work and Learning Now and in the Future

From Wharton: If Not 40 Hours, Then What? Defining the Modern Work Week

“Is the traditional 40-hour work week dead? Today’s nine-to-fiver can only look at all of the alternative proposals being bandied about and savor the possibilities: the four-day work week, the 30-hour work week, the 21-hour work week, and even the no-day work week. With the advent of telecommuting, flexible hours, globalization and answering emails after hours and on vacation, the American worker has entered the era of the fuzzy work-home divide.”

From Ram Charan: The algorithmic CEO

“Get ready for the most sweeping business change since the Industrial Revolution.”

From China Gorman: Key Drivers & Changes in New Ways of Working

“‘New Ways of Working,’ a report released last month by The B Team and Virgin Unite, offers up some provoking insights by businesses and The People Innovation Network (a group of 30+ global businesses passionate about re-defining work) on better ways of doing business, for the wellbeing of people and the planet. The report explains the key drivers that are changing the way we work, and the key changes resulting from those drivers. These ‘key drivers’ for new ways of working should likely come at no surprise, as they are: The Tech Revolution (allowing us to work anytime/anywhere, massively redefining scale, and creating new ways to problem solve), Global Changes (population growth, climate change/resource degradation, megacities and shifting economic powers) and the Multi-Generational Workforce (Millennials expected to make up 50% of the workforce by 2020; mature workers staying in the workforce longer than ever). However while these key drivers may come as no surprise, some of the key changes resulting from these drivers (and their implications) may not be as obvious, making this report a great read for anyone interested in workplace trends and organizational culture. Let’s explore a few key changes”

More Leadership Posts from Wally Bock

Big data and the weather

What weather apps can tell you about the state of Big Data.

By and About Leaders: 2/3/15

Pointers to pieces by and about Mark Hurd, Pam Flaherty, Charyl Galpin, Andrew Filev, and Chester J. Pipkin.

From the Independent Business Blogs: 2/4/15

Pointers to posts by Karin Hurt, Mary Jo Asmus, Lolly Daskal, Becky Robinson, and Art Petty.

Stories and Strategies from Real Life: 2/6/15

Pointers to stories about IBM, Shake Shack, Apple, Billy Sims BBQ, and Medtronic.

Writing well gives you the edge in business and in life. If you want to get a book done, improve your blog posts, or make your web copy more productive, please check out my blog about business writing. My coaching calendar for authors and blog writers currently has time open. Please contact me if you’re interested.

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