Tag Archives: Meetings

News You Can Use: 4/5/2017

  • Why Office Perks Aren’t Enough to Attract and Retain Millennials

    Take GE as an example. The erstwhile General Electric was founded before some millennials’ great-grandparents were born, but it’s doing a true job of remaining relevant for a new generation. In 2015 the company rolled out its “What’s the Matter With Owen” ad campaign aimed at potential millennial candidates. After its release, GE saw an 800 percent increase in applications and a 66 percent increase in traffic to the career site. GE surprised more than a few people by showing a sense of humor about its somewhat old-fashioned reputation. More importantly, the company highlighted some of the innovative work that goes on behind the scenes there, showing that it recognized the importance millennials place on being part of an organization with a well-defined mission. GE’s new look is more than skin deep: Moving its headquarters from suburban Connecticut to downtown Boston is a sign that the company is willing to adapt to how (and where) young employees want to work.


  • Senate votes to allow ISPs to collect personal data without permission

    The Senate voted 50-48 in favor of S.J. 34, which would remove the rules and, under the authority of the Congressional Review Act, prevent similar rules from being enacted. It now heads to the House for approval.

    “If signed by the President, this law would repeal the FCC’s widely-supported broadband privacy framework, and eliminate the requirement that cable and broadband providers offer customers a choice before selling their sensitive, personal information,” said FCC Commissioner Mignon Clyburn and FTC Commissioner Terrell McSweeny in a joint statement.


  • America’s Next Moonshot: Cut Poverty 50% by 2030
  • How to stop taking useless notes at work

    Students who wrote longhand notes outperformed laptop note takers in recalling information to pass the quiz. And when the researchers examined the students’ notes, they found a clue as to why: The laptop notes tended to include a lot of verbatim transcription of the video, whereas handwritten notes couldn’t be written fast enough to do the same. If we can type fast enough to transcribe information verbatim, we can get away with writing notes without engaging our minds too much—we don’t have to think critically or even pay too much attention to simply write down exactly what someone’s saying.


  • Avoid the Telecommuting Reboot

    When you get to the size of a remote workforce that IBM and Yahoo were faced with, the ability to recycle and refresh the tools supporting remote workers almost certainly becomes a management nightmare for IT staff. What likely happened was that rollouts of new tools took place, but the remote workers clung to the legacy tools they knew best.

    As IT decision makers, it’s important to look at all aspects of telecommuting policy reversals. Yes, there likely were political and philosophical reasons behind IBM and Yahoo’s reversal on remote work policy. But technology may have also played a role. From an IT perspective, you should perhaps reevaluate your own telecommute processes and tools to make sure they are where they need to be.


Photo: Ciprian Boiciuc

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News You Can Use: 3/29/2017

  • Is This the End of Sears?

    It’s hard to tell whether Sears has fallen victim to the challenges of every other department store in an era when customers prefer low prices and online shopping, or if some of its troubles have been caused by bad management choices. An in-depth report by Crain’s Chicago Business a few years ago found a toxic and dysfunctional corporate environment at the failing company. Questions also surround CEO Eddie Lampert’s obsession with shareholder value (he’s the largest shareholder), and the questionable way the company has been spinning off companies and borrowing from Lampert’s hedge fund. The company recently settled a lawsuit, for $40 million, by some of its shareholders that alleged Lampert stood to benefit in a deal which spun off Sears’ best stores.


  • Why GE is winning the war for tech talent

    Ruh and his colleagues are wooing elite engineers with the promise of getting the chance to crack game-changing challenges. But GE made a crucial move in 2013 when it insourced talent acquisition and hired several recruiters who had software domain expertise, says Jennifer Waldo, GE Digital’s chief human resources officer. “They speak the software language and know the business and technology deeply,” Waldo says.

    These recruiters, many of who came from technology companies, began hunting for candidates at tech companies. They spiced up the compensation packages with bonuses and equity, a rarity in the industrial sector. And they played up the fact that successful GE leaders often leapfrog across the company’s business lines on their way up the company ladder.


  • Andreas Weigend: “Data for the People”
  • How to terminate an employee with an “irreplaceable” skill

    Once you have solved the short-term problem, don’t repeat the mistake. Make sure that you cross-train someone in your organization on every job. This will require you to document the tasks your organization does and keep records on who’s qualified to do each job.

    Document your processes. In addition to implementing cross-training, write down the specific steps required to do every job in your organization. Documenting processes isn’t sexy, and no one is going to pay you a nickel more because you have done it, but there are several major advantages to doing this work.


  • Why you should create a music playlist for your next meeting

    Propel music. If you want to get people ready for action, play “propel music,” says Frank, who likes to use “It’s Your Thing” by the Isley Brothers. “This is usually done at the end of the presentation to get to the climax,” he says. “It feels very triumphant.” It also plays into science, Frank adds. “When you listen to propel music, oxytocin is being released as you’re building up to the arch,” he says. “It’s the inspiration hormone that makes us feel open to new ideas, wanting to be better and do better.”


Photo: Jordan Whitfield

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News You Can Use: 3/22/2017

  • How to Keep Kids, Pets, and Other Interruptions From Derailing Your Skype Meetings

    1. Take responsibility for what happened. Don’t pawn it off on other people.
    2. Explain why it happened as gracefully as you can. People find comfort in the “why” of things.
    3. Don’t make it a bigger deal than it is. Your reaction can make it more embarrassing than it already is.


  • How to Use Pocket Casts To Wrangle Your Horrible Podcast Addiction

    I know many visitors on the site listen to the podcast right in the browser, but if you want to take SourceCast with you on the go, and listen to other, much better content, use Pocket Casts – this is the Podcast app I personally use to keep up with the multitude of podcasts I follow.


  • Report: Why Merck turned to supply chain integration to save costs

    Many companies operate, for example, on an established safety stock or production level because that’s the way it has always been done. When it comes to contracting with suppliers and external manufacturers, changes in scale must be justified… a lack of data makes that process difficult.

    The case study suggests Merck & Co. realized this was a problem, and sought to integrate its systems into a single platform capable of both supply and demand planning. The change allowed the company global visibility for all of its finished goods, and segmentation of goods to better determine when exceptions are necessary, for example.


  • The Science of Style and Fashion for Entrepreneurs with Antonio Centeno

    Antonio Centeno of Real Men Real Style grew up in a trailer park, and that experience made him realize just how a person’s clothes can determine your expectations for them. You’d be more wary of trusting a doctor wearing a tye-dye shirt than one wearing a lab coat, and you’d be less likely to answer the door for a cable repair man who didn’t wear a uniform.


    The host is somewhat annoying, but interesting information…

  • Maturity is the key to effective analytics

    Many supply chain professionals report that their organizations have increased their investment in analytics over the last three years, according to a recent APQC survey. This survey looked at the analytics practices of organizations, as well as the structure of these efforts. APQC surveyed supply chain professionals from a variety of organization sizes and regions and from 36 industries. APQC’s analysis found that organizations have several areas of focus for their supply chain analytics efforts, and that most organizations have a formal analytics structure. However, the payoff of these efforts may not be at the level organizations would expect.


Photo: Caroline Hernandez

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News You Can Use: 7/27/2016

sn_goldengate_Denys Nevozhai

  • What might Brexit mean for procurement?

    For example, if the UK followed the Norway model it would be a member of the European Economic Area (EEA) and remain bound by the EU procurement directives. By contrast, if the UK adopted something like the Swiss model of bilateral agreements with the EU (see here for more on the different models) then the EU procurement directives would not apply. However, the UK would very likely have an obligation under those bilateral agreements to put in place a similar regime.


  • How To Hold A Productive Meeting In Seven Minutes Or Less

    There’s no sitting down during these meetings; everyone stands up because it forces people to move and think a little faster, without the luxury of getting too comfortable. The best time of day to run these meetings is around 11:00 a.m. or 2:00 p.m., because this is when energy levels start to ebb. Part of your goal with a daily huddle is to boost those energy levels. You may even choose to run one from 10:55 a.m. to 11:02 a.m. and again from 1:55 p.m. to 2:02 p.m.


    But there’s a formula that helps keep things brief and to the point. Every update is done the same way, and each business area answers the same questions:

    • What are you working on?
    • What were you working on last week?
    • What are you stuck on?
    • Is there anybody that you’re hiring?

    The next phase involves the team sharing any missing systems and venting their frustrations. This is a time for people to speak up about an area that’s apparently broken or where they’re stuck. Bear in mind, this is not the venue to solve the problem. This is the space for people to address the problems they face.


  • One Googler’s Insider Guide To Using Google Docs At Work
    I didn’t know Google Docs could do Macros….#hyped

    Sheets is way more than just a way to throw a quick table or list together. It has over 340 powerful functions, including dozens that other spreadsheets don’t offer, such as Google Translate, which lets you automatically translate one language to another.

    We’ve also designed Sheets to offer advanced pivot table functionality, including the ability to define custom Calculated Fields. And Docs and Sheets both support custom scripting and advanced API functionality via Apps Script, which is Google’s equivalent of macros. Basically, if your job entails a lot of number crunching, Sheets can handle it.


    Yes.. the video is very wee (“let’s save the world!”), but the upvote question feature is on point.

  • Why this is a great time to be a supply chain professional

    Enterprise software that was traditionally installed, configured, and implemented behind the firewall resulted in a large amount of “shelf ware”. This was partly due to conflicting priorities on IT organizations wherein projects got deprioritized resulting in shelved software, and partly due to software vendors offering incentives towards bulk purchase of these modules which take years of implementation. This resulted in a significant gap between the capabilities vendors introduced to the market and the consumption of the same by the user community.

    However, “pay as you go” SaaS based delivery models are enabling companies to consume software in bite sizes and immediately start deriving value. SaaS delivery model is also easing the pain associated with upgrades. This goes a long way in ensuring user satisfaction. Satisfied users will demand and consume more innovation perpetuating a positive reinforcement cycle. This creates tremendous opportunities for supply chain professionals, especially those who like to explore newer frontiers.


  • Strategically Discussing Strategy

    Strategy isn’t just doing more.
    Often, it means doing less. As Bob Shrum, Presidential campaign guru, once warned me “people in our business have a tendency to complicate common sense.” He was right. We throw in unnecessary processes, services that clients don’t need — all in the name of strategy. Harvard Business School’s Michael Porter said strategy is fundamentally about choices: You can’t be all things to all people.


Photo: Denys Nevozhai

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News You Can Use: 6/22/2016

sn_horses_Isabella Jusková

  • Cable and telecom companies just lost a huge court battle on net neutrality

    The court verdict puts to rest — for now — a key question: Whether the Internet represents a vital communications platform that deserves to be regulated with the same scrutiny as the common networks of the past, such as the telephone system. Writing for the court, Judges David Tatel and Sri Srinivasan held that despite advances in technology, the underlying importance of the Internet to everyday communications and commerce makes it more similar to the phone system than not. Today, for example, consumers are accustomed to using not just the email accounts that their broadband provider gave them, but also using third-party services such as Gmail as well as Netflix, Amazon and Uber.


  • What’s going on with IT hiring?

    CompTIA, an industry group, said about 96,000 IT jobs were lost last month across all industries, not just the technology sector. That figure includes the impact of the approximately 37,000 telecommunications jobs sidelined by the Verizon strike, which was settled this month. But it was a rough month, by some estimates.

    Analysts have been generally cautious this year about IT hiring trends. Although the unemployment rate for IT professionals is about half the national average of 4.7%, said CompTIA, some analysts use terms ranging from “modest” to “pre-recession” to describe IT hiring.


  • The Psychology of Solitude: Being Alone Can Maximize Productivity, with Scott Barry Kaufman
  • 4 Steps to Avoid ‘Death by Meeting’

    Whether your meetings are derailed by the shiny object syndrome, or you get stuck in the weeds, the only person who can save you is you! That’s why, when I’m facilitating team events, I make sure that our agendas include business items as well as elements relevant to the team. That way, we weave in learning with business needs, giving team members an opportunity to practice and apply the skills they are learning.

    What often happens, when a team gets stuck in the weeds or off track, is that team members start making eye contact with me: raising an eyebrow, in effect begging me to, “Get us out of here — we are stuck!” It always strikes me that it’s me, the guest facilitator, who is asked to save the day.


  • Doth thou protest too much?

    Many will applaud this effort to reign in what is seen as an out of control protest process. After all, the protest rate has grown some 45 percent during a period of time that total federal spending has dropped 25 percent. In 2001 there were about 700 individual protests filed with the GAO; in 2015 that number was over 2,500. Interestingly, of those protests on which GAO ultimately ruled, its “sustain rate” had dropped to 12 percent—from 18 percent just a few years earlier and 22 percent in 2001.


  • How Google killed Nest and why acquisitions fail

    I think the real problem is that when most companies do an acquisition they treat it almost like you and I would buy a car. They focus on the price and closing the deal after becoming interested in the firm’s products and/or services. But you don’t buy people, and a firm without the employees who made it a success is a failure in the making and worth a fraction of its assessed value. Part of the real cost of the acquisition is critical employee retention, and retention packages do a poor job of making people want to stay.


  • Verizon to bid $3B for Yahoo’s core Internet business
    First Verizon buys AOL, and now they are looking into buying Yahoo. Verizon is where all of your old embarrasing email addresses like (mustang_guy_1972_xx@yahoo.com) go to die. 

Photo: Isabella Jusková

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