Empowered

Empowered

Empowered

Power is one of the most sought-after, yet all too often misunderstood, aspects of the human condition. Everyone strives for greater power, be it in business, love or life in general. We all vie for the next advantage or seek to improve our own circumstances. This is a normal facet of humanity and should be treated as such. Power is, by itself and its definition, ambiguous – neither good or evil. It just is, yet its importance cannot be overstated. Personal power is the force that creates business titans and top managers, star athletes and household names. Yet cultivating the kind of Personal Power that galvanizes the mundane into the extraordinary means looking beyond the accepted concepts of Power to the underpinnings of what personal power really is, and what it isn’t.

Personal Power is not a position of authority or the ability to influence. Instead, Personal Power lies in the capacity, ability, and willingness to act – regardless of the environment. This book breaks down the barriers, so many of us face when we try to manifest our own personal power, explaining the roadblocks in our way and how to move past them.

From understanding the many forms of power to utilizing what you have and learning skills that can take you farther, this book is both a guide and a map, one that will help you unleash your potential by finding, and cultivating, the Personal Power within.

Empowered Kindle Edition

Empowered (Paperback)

Management principles – You can’t Manage what you don’t Measure

Business Intelligence and Analytics

Business Intelligence and Analytics

 

Management and Measurement

You can’t manage what you don’t measure is an old management adage that has been used for many years and while most attribute it to Peter Drucker, some claim that the quote was first used by Dr. W. Edwards Deming, although it is a bone of contention whether or not the quote is used in the correct context.

Irrespective of who said it first, I have always agreed with the principle. Coming from a corporate background where this is one of the management principles often used, I was surprised to learn that there are those that strongly disagree with the statement. This group argues that there are many things being managed at work that aren’t measurable, from the confidence we instill in a new, young manager, to the quality of new hires.

The argument is made that quantity is easy to measure, i.e., how much salespeople sell, how many leads marketing creates, or how many phone calls telemarketing makes, but that quality can’t be measured, i.e., excellent customer service, good technical support, or what differentiates a good consultant from a great one.

What to measure

Many organizations use Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) at multiple levels to measure their success at reaching targets, and will then manage the factors influencing the KPI to get it to where they want it to be. A KPI is a value that is measured and shows how effective a company is in reaching key business goals.

Setting a KPI and measuring a specific value is however not always as straightforward as it might seem. To set a KPI, the underlying business objective needs to be properly understood. In one example, a department manager’s KPI included the volume of sales, measured in dollars. In an effort to improve sales, the manager decided to change the remuneration of her sales reps from a fixed salary to a small, basic salary plus commission on sales made. The idea behind this was to incentivize the work, which would lead to increased sales. In the early months after implementing the change, the sales made by account reps did indeed increase dramatically. The CFO then however discovered that the profit margin on those increased sales was substantially lower than the minimum the company expected. The sales reps were discounting the product to increase sales, resulting in a high commission, but the net effect was that the company made less profit.

It is critical that the company’s objectives are clearly understood by all parties and that a suitable metric is measured to check if the objective is being met.

Can quality be measured?

Those arguing that quality, such as excellent customer service, or good technical support can’t be measured, often express the view that the only way that a company can determine how good their service or support is, is by asking the customer. I agree with that statement, but when you do that, aren’t you measuring these aspects? If 50% of your customers feel that your service and support is good, that is a measure against which you can manage and improve those objectives.

The same can be done for any qualitative metric. It merely becomes a question of what is appropriate to measure, and how to obtain those metrics. Qualitative measures often have to be done indirectly, i.e., you need to measure indirect results rather than direct ones.

 The role of Business Intelligence

With the sheer volume of data available across the business, and with much of it residing in different systems, it becomes very difficult to extract the relevant metrics to measure and improve. This is where Business intelligence or BI comes in.

BI utilizes computer-based techniques to spot, extract, and analyze business data, including things like sales, marketing, and production in order to make substantial improvements. Business Intelligence uses data already collected in the business. It is able to utilize data from such diverse sources as website analytics, accounting systems, customer relationship management (CRM) and email management systems.

A Business Intelligence system can automatically use and analyze all the information from these applications in real-time. This enables companies to quickly see, manage and improve their performance. BI goes further than simply measuring performance so that it can be improved, but also helps identify weaknesses in the company.

When an organization grows to the point where huge volumes of data are involved, analytics are used to examine large and varied data sets to uncover correlations, hidden patterns, customer preferences and market trends; so, organizations can make more-informed business decisions.

Both BI and big data analytics can hugely benefit Organization & Planning within any business. If you have all this information, irrespective of how exactly it was obtained or measured, managing the direction you want to go becomes an informed decision that can be planned for, rather than a guessing game based on ‘gut feel.’

A crucial element that is required in today’s fast-moving world is an organization’s ability to respond rapidly to changes in both the external and internal environment. This is known as Business agility, and it is not possible to do if the business does not measure what is going on inside and around it, and then manages accordingly.

Related References

 

Leadership – The Management Imperative

Leadership And Management, The Management Imperative

Leadership And Management

 

The Management Imperative

Management’s imperative is to put useful data at the fingertips of its human capital on a timely basis and train them how to us such data.

Source

“The ROI of Human Capital: Measuring the Economic Value of Employee Performance” by Jac Fitz-enz, 2000, Page 6, ISBN 0-8144-0574-6

 

Related References

 

Leadership – Success Characteristics in Decisive Situations

Leadership And Management

Leadership And Management

Key Success Characteristics in Decisive Situations

For leaders and managers two key behaviors of success are:

  • Pay great attention to relevant details
  • Concentrate on skillful, timely, and accurate communications

Source

The Way of the Warrior: Business Tactics and Techniques from History’s Twelve Greatest Generals, St. Martin’s Griffin, 1998. ISBN 0-312-19535-4, James F. Dunnigan And Daniel Masterson

Related References

The Pareto Principle (80/20 Rule)

The Pareto Principle (80/20 Rule)

The Pareto Principle (80/20 Rule)

Generally, speaking the Pareto Principle falls, also from Economics, is in the category of ‘Majority Affect’ concepts and, basically, is:

80% of the value is contained in 20% of the elements.

This concept is frequently used in time management and business to express the need to focus on high value high return items when setting priorities and expending resources.

Related References

 

 

Law of Diminishing Returns

Law of Diminishing Returns

Law of Diminishing Returns

The ‘Law of Diminishing Marginal Returns’, originally from economics, basically, states that:

As the level of resource investment increases achieves fulcrum point where the rate of return per investment unit (labor, Level of Effort, Capital) begins to decrease and, eventually, investing more resources is simply not worth it.

Related References

The Dynamics of Power – What is Power?

Power, What is Power

Power

First and foremost, power is personal.  Our perception of a situation has much to do with our ability to affect a situation.  Therefore, power is each person’s ability to influence a situation.   When a person has no ability to influence their situation (even, if as a result of an inaccurate personal belief), they have no power.

Definition of Power

Power is each person’s ability and willingness to influence a situation.

Related Reference

 

 

 

The Dynamics of Power – The Law of Power

Power, The Dynamics of Power, The Law of Power

Power

The Law

The fundamental law of power is that it is situational, multifaceted, dynamic, and perishable.

 

Power is Situational

Power is without a doubt situational, a person who is very politically powerful, but having no wilderness knowledge or skills, find themselves alone in the middle will have less ability to save themselves, than an experience woodsmen.

Power is Multifaceted

Power has many attributes (social influence, mental reference, innate ability, and situation), which aggregate to provide the total of your power at in given time and in any given situation

Power is Dynamic

As a person’s situation changes, their ability to influence the situation can be increased, decreased, and/or lost.  Also, facets of power are not static, but are morphed by change

Power is Perishable

A person can, through in action, lose the ability to influence a situation forever.

Related References