Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Power of Culture--use it don't blame it

In our Stanford Advanced Project Management (SAPM) program we spend a significant amount of time on the criticality of culture to successful mexecution of strategy through project-based work.  Jon Katzenbach and Ashley Harshak have an excellent article in the forthcoming issue of the execellent journal, strategy+business, Stop Blaming Your Culture. Some of the many practices they discuss include:

  • start pragmatically
  • use both formal and informal ways to reinforce behaviors (Katzenbach has explored the power of informal structures in large organizations.  An excellent overview can be downloaded here.)
  • build on and use the culture you already have
  • seek out role models for the new behaviors.
  • model what matters most
  • clarify specific implications of the new behavior.

If you lead large initiative, projects, programs, global teams--this is worth your time to read and learn.

Repeated behaviors have cultural impact because they are contagious. People unconsciously imitate what they see others do.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Power of Understanding Business Models

Leaders and managers of projects, programs, and initiatives in large organizations create new or improved products and services.  Increasingly, this requires a full understanding of the underlying business strategies and related business models.  Fortunately, an excellent book (and forthcoming iPAD app) is available, Business Model GenerationThe Model's Business Canvas, is a clever way to develop or assess any business model.  Key elements included in the Canvas include:

  • Key partners
  • Key activities
  • Key resources
  • Cost structure
  • Value propositions
  • Customer relationships
  • Customer segments
  • Channels
  • Revenue streams 

Alex Osterwalder, one of the creators, provides excellent slides on Slideshare. A recent blog post showed its application to the reverse engineering of Facebook's business model


Thursday, January 6, 2011

8 Ways to Improve Your Strategy Execution in 2011

  1. Describe where you want to be
  2. Understand the context for the work
  3. Organize and lead the team with enthusiasm
  4. Plan how to get there
  5. Do the work
  6. Adapt as needed
  7. Share the journey and the results
  8. Celebrate what was learned

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Leaders & bosses matter...learn why and how to be a better one

Bob Sutton, a member of our Stanford Advanced Project Management (SAPM) program faculty, discusses this in his new book, Good Boss, Bad Boss.  This book has had global impact and received two "awards" of note in 2011.
1- McKinsey Quarterly - Bob's article on why good bosses tune in to their people and know how to project power,  since those you lead need to believe you have it for it to be effective. was one of the TOP 10 most popular articles.  Read it here.
2- Harvard Business Review - Bob's post on 12 Things Good Bosses Believe was the most popular blog post in 2010 on all of the HBR blogs.
Congratulations to Bob and enjoy the learning from Bob and his research; his blog provides on-going insights and feedback.  Bob will be teaching in the SAPM program on the Stanford campus in June 15-17, 2011.  See details here.