The Anatomy of a Great Idea

Ideas are not invented equally. I’d suggest that anyone who repeats the adage that ‘no idea is a bad idea’ has never attended a management away day.

So what makes a great idea?

Whatever You Do Today, Don’t Start A Transformation Programme

New research indicates that corporate transformations have a 78% failure rate.

The default position is that most top down change programmes will fail. 

Smaller, well focused, spreadable changes, which are introduced on an ongoing basis in an inconspicuous way trump big change almost every time.

The Great Resignation and The Relentless Rise of Work About Work

We really need to start treating people’s time as being more valuable than the organisation’s money. Mark McArthur-Christie In 2012 a civil servant in the German town of Menden wrote a farewell message to his colleagues on the day of his retirement stating that he had not done anything for 14 years. “Since 1998,” heContinue reading “The Great Resignation and The Relentless Rise of Work About Work”

Poor Service Isn’t Always An Accident. It’s Often By Design

In markets without much competition, organisations can deliver bad service not because of poor design and management, but simply because they can. Benjamin P. Taylor shared a great thread on Twitter this week outlining the experience of attempting to get some housing support for an elderly relative. I say ‘great thread’ when I really meanContinue reading “Poor Service Isn’t Always An Accident. It’s Often By Design”

The People Vs The System – and Why The People Rarely Win

What if we overstate the effect of the people in our organisations, and we spend too much time addressing what they feel and think without addressing the more complex, systemic problems that influence how they perform or behave?

How Do You Solve A Problem Like The NHS?

There comes a point when numbers get so big as to become near incomprehensible. Almost five million people are waiting for health treatment in England alone. Almost 1.2m of them have been waiting at least six months for ‘vital appointments’. Some within the NHS say that in reality that number is far, far greater –Continue reading “How Do You Solve A Problem Like The NHS?”

The Hawthorne Effect: Why Employers Need To Be Cautious In Post-Pandemic Planning

In lockdown you can’t really experiment as people have constraints. There are too many variables at play. But now we have the opportunity to test out the best of multiple worlds; home, roam, office, wherever.

Why We Stigmatize The Poor And How To Fight It

Stigma functions as a form of power which is why we need to treat it seriously. When it is left unchallenged it can lead to the exploitation, control or exclusion of others. More positively, stigma is not a one way street -it can be understood, tackled, and reversed.

What Effect Does Environment Have On Our Ability To Think Creatively?

When you think of the “space to innovate” what immediately springs to mind? Is it the physical space , the mental space, the calendar space? All three? I’ve been thinking a lot about spaces and environments this week: specifically what are the best creative spaces to boost collaboration? Few companies measure whether the design ofContinue reading “What Effect Does Environment Have On Our Ability To Think Creatively?”

Moving From ‘Big Change That Rarely Happens’ To ‘Small Change That Always Does’

We’re obsessed with big change, but what if we’re underestimating the power of the small changes that lie more easily within our reach?

Turn Your Company Into A Problem Solving Machine

Last week I spent four and half hours in a room with my colleagues trying to get to the root of a problem. Six colleagues: 27 hours of just thinking. Einstein believed the quality of the solution you generate is in direct proportion to your ability to identify the problem you hope to solve. If you jumpContinue reading “Turn Your Company Into A Problem Solving Machine”

Remote Work Is Always Efficient But Efficient Isn’t Always Effective

There is surely nothing quite so useless as doing with great efficiency what should not be done at all. Peter Drucker This week marked my return to in-person facilitation after 16 months. I’m not going to lie. As I began the week with a 5:30am start and a 90 minute commute, I was hardly overjoyedContinue reading “Remote Work Is Always Efficient But Efficient Isn’t Always Effective”

How Do We Emerge From a State of Fear?

Be afraid. Be very afraid. That is how the media approached Covid. Be afraid of everything. Be afraid of being tall. Be afraid of being bald. Be afraid of going to the shops and accepting home deliveries. The fearmongering is relentless. Be afraid of your pets. Be afraid for your pets. Just be afraid. Laura Dodsworth In August last year I went back to theContinue reading “How Do We Emerge From a State of Fear?”

How To Kill Ideas (Part 53)

Many organisations act as inhibitors of innovation. Rules and protocols are put in place, often for very good reasons, that preserve the status quo.  Over time, organisations develop a set of social norms – ‘the way we do things around here’ – that can quell any creativity or dissent. Organisations can quickly develop an autonomic immune responseContinue reading “How To Kill Ideas (Part 53)”