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 the different approaches firms use to set strategy, building a resilient business inspired by biology, the six shifts behind the digital transformation of business, the silent crisis of retail employment, the myths of disruption, how to stop women leaning out, what women can do to be more visible at work, breaking into the boy’s club, and six emerging educational technologies
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 Kimberly Teti, Mu-Jeung Yang, Nicholas Bloom, Jan W. Rivkin, and Raffaella Sadun: The Different Approaches Firms Use to Set Strategy
“What is your strategy? Most senior executives can confidently answer this question. How has that strategy changed over time? This one usually gets a quick answer too. How do you make decisions about changing that strategy? Now it gets much more difficult. The fact is, many senior executives struggle to describe how they make strategic decisions.”
“Many global enterprises today have succeeded by following a simple recipe: procure, manufacture, and assemble in the lowest-cost locations; link these using reliable, standardized logistics and information technology; market the resulting products globally; and book profit in low-tax havens. This powerful formula for economic arbitrage enabled by technology and supported by the politics of open borders is the fruit of several decades of globalization. Today, all three elements of the equation not only are changing but also are subject to unprecedented levels of uncertainty.”
“Avoiding change, though, is impossible. And these next few decades will be an era of sweeping change. One of the biggest and most disruptive forces behind all this change is digitization, and the faster companies stop resisting and work out ways to take advantage of it, the more likely they are to still be operating 15 or 20 years from now. This means understanding the trends shaping the digital landscape and understanding how those trends will affect different industries, business models, consumer preferences, and workforce changes.”
Thanks to Smartbrief on Leadership for pointing me to this story.
Industries and Analysis
From From Andreas Behrendt, Nicolai Müller, Peter Odenwälder, and Christoph Schmitz: Industry 4.0 demystified–lean’s next level
“Amid digital disruption, five principles can help companies find tangible value in Industry 4.0 solutions.”
“Brick-and-mortar retail is having a meltdown, and economists are starting to see the effects in the job market.”
“Minnesota’s burgeoning digital health sector encompasses the state’s largest and smallest companies.”
Innovation and Technology
“A close friendship or romance with someone from another culture can enhance outside-the-box thinking.”
From Julian Birkinshaw: The Myths Of Disruption: How Should You Really Respond To Emerging Technologies?
“Disruption may be the most overused term in the business lexicon today. Every startup wants to disrupt the established order. Every incumbent is scared of being disrupted. Disruption is a rallying cry or a bogeyman, depending on where you sit. And no one is immune: if an executive dares to suggest that their industry is free from the threat of disruption, they are accused of being short-sighted or in denial, and heading the way of the Titanic or the T-Rex.”
“Creating an innovative culture in a large, global organization requires the ability to let go of conventional norms.”
Women and the Workplace
“Companies that want to attract women to the C-suite need more than good recruitment policies, say Raina Brands and Isabel Fernandez-Mateo.”
“Compared to succeeding in the work world, it’s often easier for women to excel in school because they can do great work without having to defy feminine norms or navigate the likeability costs that too frequently come with being high achievers in the workplace.”
“Whether it’s a result of not seeking out women workers or not being able to attract them, or a combination of factors, some fields remain heavily male-dominated.”
Work and Learning Now and in the Future
“There have been numerous predictions about the impact of automation on certain jobs, but it need not all be bad news. Cath Everett looks at HR’s role in a future where humans and robots work better together.”
“Each spring the New Media Consortium (NMC) and the EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative release a list of emerging technologies forecast to have a significant impact on higher education in the next one-to-five years. The NMC Horizon Report, now in its 14th edition, aims to ‘identify and describe emerging technologies likely to have an impact on learning, teaching, and creative inquiry in education.’ This year, the following six edtech trends were identified by NMC’s expert panel as having ‘the potential to foster real changes in education, particularly in the development of progressive pedagogies and learning strategies, the organisation of teachers’ work, and the arrangement and delivery of content.’ We’ve featured some of the trendsetters in each category as well. As you’ll see, there’s inspiring work being done all over the globe.”
“We’re pessimistic when we focus on the world that we know now, not thinking that processes are being reorganised, writes Ben Pring.”
More Leadership Posts from Wally Bock
Not every problem has a nice, tidy solution. One of 347 tips from Become a Better Boss One Tip at a Time.
We all have problems crying out to be solved. Here are three ways to get the job done.
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Articles about real leaders and real companies in real life. This week it’s article about Steve Hughes, Kevin Johnson, Dale Clareburt, Colin Doherty, and Ray Dalio.
Pointers to posts by Art Petty, Suzi McAlpine, Kevin Eikenberry, Kate Nasser, and Lolly Daskal.
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.
The 347 tips in my ebook can help you Become a Better Boss One Tip at a Time.