Showing posts from March, 2011

Thinking About Succession...Before It's Too Late

Back in February, the business news carried the story of Steve Jobs' deteriorating health and the question of succession. At Apple's shareholder meeting, the question of succession surfaced. One pundit asked a key question:

~ "Is Apple's bench strong enough no matter how long Steve Jobs is not there?"

In other words, can an innovative firm like Apple withstand the loss of a creative leader like Jobs should he suddenly exit the scene?

It's an uncomfortable prospect to think about. In fact, many (if not most) leaders would prefer NOT to think about succession. A recent HR survey found that 2 out of 5 companies do not have a succession process in place. Yet this is a terribly important governance issue for boards, investors, and shareholders, as well as a business continuity issue for customers and employees.

HR guru William Rothwell released a brief video on the basics of succession planning where he says:

- The goal of succession planning is to develop all of the …

Google Finds What Good Managers Do

In today's Wall St Journal Online, I saw a headline that Google is the # 1 most desired employer in the eyes of recent college graduates. Why? Google has branded itself quite well: the best search engine on Earth. And Google presents this image to smart young professionals:

"Google has tailored the image it projects to potential employees, said John Sullivan, a management professor at San Francisco State University. The company regularly hosts open houses and tech-related talks in areas where it wants to recruit, said Yolanda Mangolini, director of outreach programs for Google. 'It's incredibly powerful and helps them imagine themselves at Google,' she said. The company also runs blogs, Twitter feeds and YouTube channels that try to show what it's like to work there, she said."

The latest evidence of Google's prowess in search is making waves throughout the blogosphere: Google has discovered what good managers do!

Google formed a project team, called…

Twenty Lessons for Landing Your Next Job

A friend and fellow networker Peter Lutz recently landed in a new job. Like many self-aware job seekers, Peter knew that his job was to find a job. And he pursued it with determination and optimism.

Following the landing, Peter sat down and wrote up his "lessons learned" and shared them with his network. He then gave me permission to reprint his points here. I have edited them slightly from Peter's original email.

Thank you, Peter, for taking the time to share what worked. If other job hunters would adopt your twenty points, their searches would be much more productive.

Twenty Lessons for Landing Your Next Job by Peter Lutz

My sincere thanks to my friends and network contacts from the Breakfast Club and other networking groups. Your support and advice have been particularly helpful during this latest transition after I was downsized from my position last year. I want to particularly thank those who took the time to offer suggestions for my search and who were very generous …

What Job Seekers Must Know About Social Media

Question for job hunting Boomers: Have you been puzzled and frustrated by the rise of Twitter, facebook, Linkedin, blogs and all the rest that are called "social media," wondering whether any of it can help you with your search for meaningful employment?

Yesterday, at the St. Matthias Employment Ministry, for two hours, a room full of job seekers listened in wonder as Jacob C. Alonzo provided a tour of the emerging realm of social media and why anyone who is "in transition" these days must be active with it.

Like a sherpa who knows the terrain, and can expertly guide explorers through it, Jacob made many key points including these:

Regarding being social - Jacob asked, Are you creating content and sharing it with others? Many if not most in the room were speechless. What? Me a blogger? Jacob put blogging into a broader context he called The 5 C's for Today's Social Resume: a 21st Century job seeker generates content, communicates it, curates it, connects wit…

The Five Stories Leaders Tell

The ability to tell a compelling story has been part of the human fabric since ancient times. In today's business world, many are rediscovering its value. For example, Hollywood legend Peter Guber has just published a new book called Tell to Win wherein he makes the case for stories. As Guber puts it:

"More and more, success is won by creating compelling stories that have the power to move partners, shareholders, customers, and employees to action. Simply put, if you can't tell it, you can't sell it."

This "power to move" is the action of Leadership. As Warren Bennis famously said, Leadership is the ability to translate vision into results. Stories help leaders do just that.

Here then are Five Stories that Leaders must be prepared to tell if they hope to move others to results.

1. The Idea - Every one of us has a "bright idea" now and then. This story tells about a time when you had an idea, maybe a solution to a dilemma your company was facing, …