Leadership Reading to Start Your Week: 6/22/15

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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 Bain’s Management Tools & Trends 2015, how disruptive startups spread the wealth, why conflict is good for creativity, a study that reveals female business owners need to set boundaries, and five trends that are reshaping your office.

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 Darrell Rigby and Barbara Bilodeau: Management Tools & Trends 2015

“Executives who slogged through years of recession or stagnation are feeling more confident, even exuberant— perhaps too exuberant. Many also see disruptions and challenges ahead. Forces such as the demographics of emerging economies, aging populations and resource scarcity are accelerating deep structural shifts in global markets. And although these forces generate opportunities for growth, they also unleash risks.”

From McKinsey & Company: Heidrick & Struggles on the changing nature of leadership

“Tracy Wolstencroft, CEO of the global executive-search firm, explains the importance of authentic leadership, listening, and getting comfortable with being uncomfortable.”

From Steven M. Walker and Matthew P. Earnhardt: Sustaining an Organization in the Midst of Chaos

“Sustainability is a popular topic that influences almost every area of life and industry. Using the 2008 recession as the crisis examined, we will take a look at how several leaders have handled economic, environmental, and organizational responsibility and sustainability in the midst of chaos. We will then tie those examples together within the realm of systems thinking, highlighting how leaders need to see the interconnected nature of systems in order to effectively respond to crises.”

Industries and Analysis

From Robert M. Pearl: Three Ways to Transform American Healthcare

“Want to improve U.S. healthcare? Apply these traditional business principles.”

From Paul Gores: As home building picks up, supply of workers lags

“After the long economic downturn crushed the residential construction industry and forced tradespeople to find other work, homebuilders now find themselves with thin ranks of carpenters and others who have the skills to put up a house.”

From Sohin Shah: How Disruptive Startups Spread the Wealth by Encouraging Derivative Businesses

“Genuinely revolutionary companies create opportunities for yet more startups. The shrewdest disruptors embrace the process to create a bigger market for everyone.”

Innovations and Technology

From Gary Hamel: You Innovate with Your Heart, Not Your Head

“I recently got a call from a CEO of a health system that encompasses several hospitals, medical practices, and clinics. Lakeland Health employs about 4,000 associates and takes in nearly $500 million per year. Its facilities are spread across the southwest corner of Michigan — where median income is 70% of the national average and the incidence of chronic diseases is substantially higher than the norm. It’s a challenging environment in which to be a healthcare provider. The CEO knew I was a fan of passion-fueled innovation and thought he had a story I’d find inspiring, hence the call.”

From Tamim Saleh, Erik Lenhard, Nic Gordon, and David Opolon: How to Avoid the Big Bad Data Trap

“Using poor-quality and badly managed data to make high-impact management decisions is courting disaster.”

From Sujin Lee: Conflict Is Good for Creativity

“Conventional thinking says that conflict is bad for teamwork and should be kept out of the office, but putting individuals in a conflictual state of mind can enhance their creativity.”

Women and the Workplace

From Caroline McMillan Portillo: Co-working and daycare at Nido in Durham, N.C.

“As the number of independent contractors grows, so do the number of co-working spaces designed to serve them — people who want less homebound isolation, more camaraderie and a place for business meetings that reflects professionalism.”

From Rieva Lesonsky: Study Reveals Female Business Owners Need to Set Boundaries

“A new survey found that while women small business owners claim to value work-life balance more than men, women are less likely than men to actually take steps to achieve that elusive goal.”

From Peggy Drexler: High Heels vs. Gender Equality: One or the Other?

“High heels have always been central in the battleground of sexual politics, with feminists and other pro-gender egalitarians often at odds. One on hand, many wonder if it’s possible to argue for gender equality while hobbling around on six-inch heels. On the other: How is what women wear relevant at all?”

Work and Learning Now and in the Future

From Julian Birkinshaw: What comes after the knowledge era?

“We live in the information age, which according to Wikipedia is a period in human history characterised by the shift from industrial production to one based on information and computerisation. But what comes next?”

From Perspectives at SMU: Education and the future of jobs

“Ford’s sentiments are not new. When machines replaced humans in textile mills in the First Industrial Revolution, followed by the Second Industrial Revolution when Henry Ford mastered the science of the moving assembly line and mass production, there were fears that machines would put humans out of work permanently. Instead of becoming redundant, humans just adapted and created new jobs. However, technology could significantly change the way certain jobs are perceived.”

From Jena McGregor: Five trends that are reshaping your office

“That’s one of the big takeaways of a new report released Monday at NeoCon, the annual mega conference attended by major designers of Corporate America’s offices and cubicles. The report was put together by Knoll, the workplace design company, and UnWired, a U.K.-based publishing and events business focused on the future of work. It surveyed leaders in charge of the facilities and real estate of 46 global companies. Here are five highlights from the new report that reflect how the modern office is changing:”

More Leadership Posts from Wally Bock

The hardest thing for a manager to learn

The hardest thing for a manager to learn is that everything can be better if you give up control.

By and About Leaders: 6/16/15

Pointers to pieces by and about Mark Hurd, Jessica Alba, Ana Botín, R. Donahue Peebles, and Margaret Paddock.

From the Independent Business Blogs: 6/17/15

Pointers to posts by Art Petty, Karin Hurt, Julie Winkle Giulioni, Ed Batista, and Jesse Lyn Stoner

Stories and Strategies from Real Life: 6/19/15

Pointers to stories about Elon Musk, Campbell Soup, Korn Ferry, Restoration Hardware, and Zara.

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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