January Management Journey Carnival

Originally published January 2012.

Happy New Year and welcome to the January edition of the Management Journey Carnival!

We’re off to a good start with the first Carnival Edition for this year.  Topics for this month’s Management Journey Blog Carnival include time management, change leadership, employee engagement, interpersonal effectiveness, social business, generational management, motivation, innovation, organizational learning, teamwork, leadership skills, customer relations, self-improvement, and other related topics. This blog carnival presents 21 top posts from thought leaders around the web. Let’s get started and review a classic post!

An Oldie But Goodie

The transition from an individual contributor role to a new manager role is often a difficult transition for business professionals to make.  Many business professionals assume their good technical skills will guarantee them success in their new managerial role.  Rick Ross of Rick Ross | Business, Technology, and Life provides sound advice for new and experienced managers alike in his post, Mistakes New Managers, and Sometimes Experienced Ones, Make and How to Avoid Them.

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Featured Podcast

Featured Podcast

The featured podcast this month comes from Harvard Business Review.  In this podcast, author John Coleman and other contributors explain, What Motivates Tomorrow’s Leaders.  It provides enlightening information for employers who are seeking to engage this emerging generation of leaders.

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Featured Articles

What does 2012 promise for all of us? One prediction that we can make with certainty is that this year will bring change.  In fact, continual change is a constant in this new millennium.  In this age of a hyper-connected state of existence, David Armano of L + E | Logic + Emotion explains why this year is The Year of the Change Agent.

The Old Testament proverb says that without a vision the people perish. When leaders do not have a compelling vision of the future, their businesses become obsolete.  For leaders, vision is more than determining the expectations of customers, however.  John Bell of In the CEO Afterlife explains further in his post, Gretzky, Gates, Zuckerberg: Can they See the Unseen?

Savvy leaders (no matter how much success they have attained) continue to assess how they are doing now in their leadership roles.  Sometimes the best assessment is as simple as an internal discussion.  Tim Berry of Planning Startup Stories provides one in his post, 10 Ways to Tell You Are Not a Leader.

As managers strive to solve organizational problems with innovative solutions, they often fail because they start off on the wrong foot.  As Anita Campbell of the Open Forum explains, Innovation Starts with Defining the Problem.

Time, it’s that elusive, limited resource that we never seem to have enough of!  Applying the classic wisdom of Stephen Covey’s, Time Management Matrix, Renee Charney of Charney Coaching & Consulting revisits this powerful tool. In her post, Get Moving! Part 2: A Simple Model, she reminds us to evaluate our work both by what is important and what is urgent.

It’s a new year and we are all taking stock of what we need to do differently in 2012.  As we do this, we are investing in our own self improvement.  Marc Chernoff of Mark and Angel Hack Life helps us in this effort with his compelling list of 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself.

What does it take to build an innovative company that will stand the test of time?  Does the future lie with a leadership-led-genius culture or a co-creative culture of contributing stakeholders? Mark Fidelman of Seek Omega explores this question in his post, Why Every Company Needs to be More Like IBM and Less Like Apple.

Several prominent surveys show that employee engagement is on the decline.  How are your employees feeling?  Fortunately, you do not need a survey to answer this question.  Stephen Gill of The Performance Improvement Blog provides an easier way to answer this question in his post, 20 Signs of Employee Disengagement.

One of the toughest tasks for managers is letting people go in a company layoff. When managers perform layoffs callously, they do lasting damage to the organization.  Fortunately, Robert Holland of Communication at Work provides 7 Tips for Communicating a Layoff.

What does it take to be successful as a first time leader in an industry where the number of people one supervises is large and the age of the average leader is twenty-something?  Sachin Karnik of Minacs Blogs provides five strategies in his post, Getting Ahead for the First Time Leader.

Many businesses have opted for a flat organization to encourage business viability and effective management.  There are some disadvantages to this approach, however.  Scott McDowell of 99% explains how to mitigate some of the unintended consequences of the flat organization in his post, Why Flat Organizations Don’t Create Great Leaders (& What To Do About It).

Career management is ultimately a personal responsibility.  Michael Moore of Management By Delegation advises a strategy for creating your own promotional opportunities in his post, The Five Essential Characteristics for Career Advancement.

Are you busy planning your year by making thoughtful resolutions and SMART goals?  Why not be innovative in your approach and turn this process inside out?  As Valerie Pendergrass of Leadership on Speed explains, Instead of Resolutions, Make a Not-To-Do List!

Temperament Theory identifies four types of behavior that we humans display in our social interactions with each other.  Nicki Porter of CommonFig gives an overview of one of these four temperaments in her post, How Does Your Personality Affect the Way You Do Business? Part One: The Sanguine Personality.

There’s untapped managerial power in the saying, Stop, Look, and Listen!  Corwynn Romberger of Work Ways Blog explains the power of the neglected activity of observation in his post, Observational Learning.

Should leaders be more like a fireman or a fire ranger? Doug Suchecki of Leading on Purpose raises this interesting question with some instructive real-world application in his post, Forest Ranger or Fireman?

So, you’re still skeptical of this participative management stuff!  You reason that if you ask your team for their input you’ll lose your leadership power. Rick Willis of Eagles Flight provides a sound alternate rationale on how you can be more participative and still lead your team in his post, Leadership is Not a Democracy.

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Featured Video

Featured Video

The featured video for this month is a post identifying five links to the top 5 video posts in 2011 from my blog, Management is a Journey.  These videos have John Kotter speaking on the Urgency of Change, Stephen Covey discussing his 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, a Google Executive explaining how the company approaches innovation, Bill Gates sharing his thoughts on Steve Jobs, and Tom Peters discussing leadership. Interesting insights!

ribbon award winner editor pick
Editor’s Pick

Editor’s Pick

For my Editor’s Pick for this Carnival, I selected a thought provoking article by Geoffrey James of Inc.com.  The title alone,  New Year’s Advice: Don’t Sell to Jerks, explains the focus of this article. Geoffrey makes the argument that not all money is good money, particularly when you are devoting substantial resources to service difficult customers.  Selling to these customers is a no-win proposition over the long term particularly for small and medium sized businesses as Geoffrey explains in the following:

Now that jerk is part of your life–is part of who you’ll become over time. You’re now “partnering” with somebody who you can’t stand.  It’s like a lousy marriage, bad for both of you. . . . Worst case, the jerk will become a constant headache, consuming a disproportionate amount of your energy and your company’s resources.

No doubt, there are many who will find this article controversial as it is contrary to the popular belief that the customer is always right.  Geoffrey’s perspective is worthy of consideration, however.  The truth is not all customers are created equal. Some customers will take unfair advantage of a business and drain its valuable resources.  As Geoffrey explains, these customers are never satisfied no matter how far the business goes to accommodate them. Further, they’ll probably be the first to bad-mouth the firm anyway.  He concludes that it’s best not to sell to these customers.  His is an interesting perspective to consider as we begin 2012!

This concludes the January 2012 edition of the Management Journey Carnival.