Saturday, June 03, 2006

We Don't Manage Companies, Departments or Projects

We don't manage companies or departments.

We manage people in companies and departments.

It's people skills and managing them.

We don't manage a project, we manage our interactions and relations with people who implement a project.

We don't manage a stage, we manage the people who follow and implement a system for running a stage show.

If that's the case, how come we don't teach people skills and be people oriented. If communicating with people takes up 60-80% of our time why aren't those skills taught? Why leave it to chance interaction or whether you were fortunate enough to be born with good parents or friends?

Friday, June 02, 2006

Limited Mind RAM

The human mind has limited resources.

This is a principle that has implications on a lot of human activity.

You should not provide information to someone that is more than 7-8 bullet points at one go.

You should not explain a process to someone that has more than 7-8 steps.

You should explain something to someone in bold letters in about 250 words on one A4 sheet of paper.

Program modules should not be more than 300-400 lines long.

You should not have more than 7-8 items on your desk at one time. Keep staplers, pens, pencils etc away...

It is difficult to plan more than 2 years in advance. (5 year plans are theoretical... has anyone's 5 year plans ever worked out as planned?)

You should have only about 7-12 people as your direct followers.

How does this principle apply?

In business Branding and sales thrives because of limited human mind capacity.

You can only remember the top 3-5 brands of most items that you need. Cars, shoes, clothes... even if you can recall more than 7 or more, there are only 2-3 that you frequent the most.

You can't remember every feature of cars, for example, but you use logo, brand association and emotional attachment to link your mind to what you know.

In presentations or speeches you should only have 1 major point to speak and perhaps 7 sub-points. Nothing more.

Gung-Ho: Summary

PDF of this document available here.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Gung-Ho: The Gift of the Goose


Cheering Each Other On

  1. Active or passive, congratulations must be TRUE.

    • Congratulations are affirmations that who people are and what they do matter, and that they are
      making valuable contribution toward achieving the shared mission.

    • Telling people what a great job they've done or presenting an award is an active congratulation.
      Passive congratulations are such things as stepping aside and letting a team member go forward with
      a tricky, complicated, and important project, without exercising some sort of control or even offering

    • You can't overdo TRUE congratulations: Timely, Responsive, Unconditional, Enthusiastic.

  2. No score, no game, and cheer the progress.

    • At football games fans don't sit mute as the ball is moved down the field, waiting for the touchdown
      before cheering. Cheer the progress, not just the results. Measurement (score) shared with everyone
      generates excitement..

    • The farther congratulations are to the right on the scale below, the better (more effective)
      they are:

    • Programmed-->Spontaneous

    • Blanket-->Individual

    • General-->Specific

    • Traditional-->Unique

    • Stop focusing on problems and the guilty party (police behaviour) and start looking for those
      responsible for things gone right (coach behaviour)..

  3. e=mc2--Enthusiasm equals mission times cash and congratulations.

    • Worthwhile work and being in control of achieving the goal--that's a mission.

    • Cheering each other on brings enthusiasm to work.

    • Cash comes first--you need to feed material needs, (food, clothing, etc.) before you can feed
      the spirit with congratulations..