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Best Practices Growth Management Personal Development

Converting Information into Knowledge-Based Assets

When I developed my forecasting model in the early 1980s, I could see that a digital revolution would unfold, and as it did, an advanced form of capitalism would emerge, one where ideas and knowledge stimulated economic growth even more so than labor, land, money or other tangibles. It later became known as the Knowledge Era – or the Knowledge Age – in contrast to the Industrial Age.

A Few Strategic Questions to Consider

There is a big difference between data, information, knowledge and wisdom. Today we are all focused on big data, and we should be because it provides the foundation for the three higher levels. We all have a database, and as we all know, there is no shortage of information, but do you have a knowledgebase? Is your organization creating new revenue streams by converting information into actionable knowledge, sharing that knowledge internally to increase its value, and then selling it in non-competing industries? I helped a large global organization do this several years ago and they generated over $100 million in the first year. All too often we fail to see the hidden value of the people part of the business. Are you actively using web-based technology to leverage the talents, knowledge and wisdom of employees to create new high-margin products, as well as solve problems faster?

All too often, as we grow larger and move faster, we can easily lose track of the wide variety of intellectual property (IP) we have created. Are you actively formalizing, capturing and leveraging your intellectual property(IP) to create higher value assets? Using today’s digital tools, it has never been easier for any organization, regardless of size, to create new revenue streams by leveraging their enhanced IP.

Three Must-Have Components to Leverage Intellectual Capital

1. Everyone in the organization must see the tremendous opportunity and added value in going beyond the current activity of converting data into information, to higher levels of value by creating and delivering actionable knowledge and wisdom. In addition, auditing and evaluating intellectual assets must be seen as a strategic direction.

2. Everyone in the organization must see that its technology infrastructure and organizational culture are the keys to unlocking the vast wealth of knowledge within the organization, both for the organization and your clients. Knowledge increases in value when it is shared within the organization, and that means shifting from being an Information Age organization to entering the Communication Age. Informing is a one-way activity that does not always produce a result. Communicating is two-way and dynamic and almost always causes action. That’s why social media has grown so fast; it is a Communication Age enabling technology. An internal knowledge-sharing strategy, focused on fostering two-way communication and dialog, is crucial because as I said earlier, knowledge increases in value when it is shared.

3. Everyone in the organization must see their participation as essential to building a strong foundation for the enhancement, sharing and delivery of knowledge. When we have collective knowledge and wisdom at out fingertips, everyone can accomplish their work with less time and effort.

Keep in mind that you get the behaviors you reward; therefore, there must be a rewards system for sharing knowledge. Remember, there are many ways to reward people and not all have to involve money.

If you would like to learn more about how to convert information to knowledge and then productize it for revenue, I recommend reading my latest bestselling book, The Anticipatory Organization.

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Culture Growth Management Personal Development

If You Want Optimum Trust and Success You Better Behave

Some organizations have achieved incredible success despite leaders who exhibit questionable behaviors. There are numerous stories about the petulance of Steve Jobs. Some days he was “good Steve” and other days “bad Steve.” Jobs was well known for exaggerated emotional outbursts laced with profanity. Yet still, Apple has been amazingly successful and, as of this writing, is the most valuable company in the Fortune 500 (capitalization) recently touching the trillion-dollar valuation mark. How does one explain the valuation of Apple when many of the behaviors of its most prominent leader were trust-breaking?

How does one explain the growth in valuation of Uber in the face of recent leadership issues and the resignation of one of the founders because of accusations of sexual harassment and discrimination? Yet, as of this writing, Uber is estimated to be worth $70 billion and is known as the company that upended how people think about and use personal transportation.

These two examples beg the question “How can a leader(s) achieve such amazing success while behaving so inappropriately?” It’s frustrating to know that inappropriate trust-breaking behavior by leaders can occur concurrent with incredible financial success. It’s a paradox. The answers lie in the interaction between strategy and culture and the priorities of the leadership at the time, namely, the desire for short-term vs. long-term success.

The famous quote “Culture eats strategy for breakfast” was originated by Peter Drucker and made famous by Mark Fields, president at Ford. This thought sets the stage for us provide some answers for managing the variation of trust. The point of Drucker’s quote is that both the culture of an organization and its strategy interact to achieve success. They are interdependent. One will influence the other. Culture will eventually either undermine the strategy or support it. In the long term, culture wins.

If it’s true that the leader(s) of an organization influences the culture, then we can explain how Steve Jobs evolved. Jobs’ behavior softened over the long term. Recent articles about Uber reveal that they changed their core values. Those most knowledgeable about Uber describe how the original core values often led to inappropriate behaviors, including competition between colleagues.

The key answer to long-term success is consciously managing culture to support an effective strategy. By providing a structure and method to manage the variation in trust we are helping the culture to evolve and to support the strategy.

The question: “How can we create a culture of trust that will support an aligned strategy?” The answer: “We must clearly define core values using specific observable behaviors. We must then provide consistent feedback about those observable behaviors.”

When the core values are operationalized, they describe specific observable behaviors. It’s not enough to say, “We behave with integrity” or “We respect each other.” The leadership needs to define exactly what that looks like. Otherwise, it is difficult, if not impossible, to provide credible feedback when needed. The feedback needs to be timely and credible.

If we want trust and predictable success, leadership must behave.

Wally Hauck, PhD has a cure for the “deadly disease” known as the typical performance appraisal.  Wally holds a doctorate in organizational leadership from Warren National University, a Master of Business Administration in finance from Iona College, and a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania.   Wally is a Certified Speaking Professional or CSP.  Wally has a passion for helping leaders let go of the old and embrace new thinking to improve leadership skills, employee engagement, and performance.  See other resources here.

For more, read on: https://c-suitenetwork.com/advisors/advisor/wally-hauck/

Categories
Growth Health and Wellness Leadership

Are You Ready for Back-to-Work?

How do you prepare for peak performance?

Kids get new pencils and back-packs, maybe even a new lunch-box. How do you prepare for getting back to work after the summer down-time?

When I was a kid I loved the excitement of getting back to school. Maybe because of my new pencils and outfits, but I actually liked the action of being engaged and using my brain. During the summer-break I would miss feeling productive. I know you might wonder what kind of kid is thinking about feeling productive. I did not call it that at the time of course. I think it was more like feeling I did something that other people responded to, learning stuff and showing my teachers that I was getting better and better at what they were teaching me. Reality is that is still what drives us as adults at work but let’s discuss that in another article.

Be a kid again.

Kids don’t have the same dread of “crazy-busy-no-time-to-myself” that adults do. Later when they are teenagers and studying for an exam though, the perfection-performance-mode already sets in. It is that mode, where we think our brain is the key to performance and that we just need to keep going without feeding, fueling or nourishing it, or the body that it is attached to that keeps it working. It is like thinking the computer can work without battery and electricity.

How did we go so wrong?

When did we start thinking of our bodies like a machine that just keeps going until it burns out? We don’t even treat our cars the way we treat our bodies. Maybe it was during the industrial revolution, where humans became less important than machines and we thought to compete we had to be like them? The thing is, we knowthat pushing harder does not make us more productive, and yet that is our solution for getting the work done.

Work less, get more done.

In 1926 Henry Ford introduced the 40-hour work-week. He found that when he reduced the work-day from 10 to 8 hours and the work-week from 6 to 5 day, productivity went UP. And yet most leaders work 10 hour days (or more) and 6 day work-weeks.

Kids in Finland started performing better in school when they had more play-time. They added a 15 minute break after each lesson, and their focus and attention improved. No surprise really, because neuroscience also tells us that we only focus optimally for 45-90 minutes at a time, and then we need 15 minute brain-off time, so that we can reset our nervous-system and re-boot our mental energy, so we can focus optimally again for the next 45-90 minutes.

So getting back to work, take a look at your schedule and make some performance changes. Cut your meetings from 60 minutes to 45 and take the 15 minutes in between for performance self-care.

Work better on food.

I consistently hear that people are not hungry or thirsty all day so they don’t stop to eat or drink water. It is probably not true that you are not hungry or thirsty! You are just not pausing for long enough to pay attention to your body.

Your body needs water and food, just as much as it needs a pause throughout the day. But when you are running on survival-mode your body tries to keep up with you being chased by a tiger (this tiger could be your boss, a deadline or your board of directors). When you are working on survival-mode, your body stops sending you messages of hunger and thirst, because all systems and hormones are on go-go-go, and you don’t get the “memo” that you are hungry until you stop late at night, – and realize you are starving. But by then you are also burned out.

Burnout prevention.

We don’t have to burn out. To avoid this cycle of burn out and recovery as the way we work, we need to bring self-care with us to work. We work better this way. It is how we can achieve peak performance, work better and go home happy with energy to spare.

Learn more about how to integrate burnout prevention into your company culture or your personal work-style find me at  jeanettebronee.com for keynotes, workshops and 1-on-1 coaching.

Photo: Jeremy Lapak via Unsplash

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