Our Cool Friend Dan Pink, author of Free Agent Nation, A Whole New Mind, and most recently When: The Scientific Secrets of Perfect Timing, posted a list titled "20 Books That Have Mattered to Me." Tom is thrilled to be on this short list, where he's in the company of Frederick Douglass, Charles Darwin, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Michael Lewis, and more. Unable to choose only one of Tom's books, Dan put all of them, along with Peter Drucker's, as one entry on the list. So, visit Dan's post, pick a few books, and start reading. And, while you're at it, read a few of Dan's books, too. We suggest you try them all.
Art Kleiner, editor-in-chief of strategy+business magazine, helped Tom clarify the meaning of Brand You with an excellent interview, online here. Our thanks to Art!
Art Kleiner, editor-in-chief of strategy+business, got Tom to sit down and talk about Brand You. The result is an in-depth look at what Tom sees as the essence of the term. It's not about self-branding, but about how you work with others, with distinction. Read the excellent conversation between Art and Tom here: Rethinking Brand You.
The Excellence Dividend was published in early 2018. I have not been entirely idle in the subsequent 13 months. Herewith you will find a collection of 12 papers that have seen the light of day during those 13 months. They are offered up here for your use. (Or not.)
The Excellence Dividend: The Eighteen "Number Ones"
(Investment #1: TRAINING/Asset #1: PORTFOLIO OF FIRST-LINE MANAGERS/Core Value #1: LISTENING EXCELLENCE!!!/Obsession #1: EXECUTION/"THE LAST 95%"/Job #1: ESTABLISHING/MAINTAINING "60/60/24/7/365" A CULTURE OF EXCELLENCE-BY-PUTTING-PEOPLE-REALLY-FIRST [Plus 13 others])
Agenda 2019/20: Basic Tenets
(Re-Imagine Employee Engagement and Growth/Re-Imagine Business Per Se/Re-Imagine Business Education and the MBA)
EEE/Extreme Employee Engagement
("Business has to give people enriching, rewarding lives ... or it's simply not worth doing."—Richard Branson/"The role of the Director is to create a space where the actors and actresses can become more than they have ever been before, more than they've dreamed of being."—Robert Altman)
Excellence Dividend FUNDAMENTALS
(PowerPoint/820 slides/13 chapters/Heavily Annotated)
The Excellence Dividend/Nine Observations
(In Search of Excellence in Six Words and eight others)
HARD IS SOFT. SOFT IS HARD.
("Hard [plans, numbers, org charts] is soft. Soft [people, relationships, culture] is hard."/GOOGLE GETS A [B-I-G] [S-O-F-T] SURPRISE)
Manifesto/Enterprise Excellence 2019
(EEE/EXTREME EMPLOYEE ENGAGEMENT/VISIBLE MORAL LEADERSHIP/A FULLTIME RESPONSIBILITY, NOT AN OPTION/HARD [NUMBERS/PLANS] IS SOFT. SOFT [RELATIONSHIPS/ CULTURE] IS HARD./EXTREME HUMANIZATION/PRODUCT-SERVICE DIFFERENTIATOR #1/EXCELLENCE IS THE NEXT FIVE MINUTES)
Speed Trap: When Taking Your Time (Really) Matters
(BUILDING/MAINTAINING RELATIONSHIPS ... take time./RECRUITING ALLIES TO YOUR CAUSE ... takes time./BUILDING/MAINTAINING A HIGH-PERFORMANCE CULTURE ... takes time./ READING/ STUDYING ... take time./FIERCE/AGGRESSIVE LISTENING ... takes [lots of!] time./MBWA/MANAGING BY WANDERING AROUND ... takes time./SLACK IN YOUR SCHEDULE ... takes time./HIRING-EVALUATING-PROMOTING ... take time./THOUGHTFULNESS/INSTINCTIVE SMALL GESTURES (SMALL>>BIG) ... take time./EXTREME HUMANIZATION-RADICAL HUMANIZATION ... takes time./GAMECHANGING DESIGN [spending "hours and hours discussing corners"] ... takes time./YOUR NEXT EMAIL ... takes time./"THE LAST 1%" OF ANY TASK OR PROJECT ... takes time./E-X-C-E-L-L-E-N-C-E ... takes time.)
I was exhausted last Friday afternoon. I'd not looked up for hours as I edited and re-edited and re-re-re-re-edited what I call "The Everything Paper." I mean it! EVERYTHING ... on one page (attached).* It's a long story, but my mind has been racing and I have wanted to capture the main themes I intend to exclusively work on in the years to come—not in a new book, but on one page.
(*I have sort of cheated. The main document is a single page. But for illumination, I have added a page called "Case Study"; it focuses on Commerce Bank/Metro Bank, the poster child of The Excellence Dividend. It is representative of much of what I am discussing in TEP/The Everything Page. When I do a paper handout, TEP is printed on the front and the Commerce/Metro story is printed on the back—hence it technically remains one page!)
I call this one-pager "Agenda/Excellence 2019." For several iterations I labeled it a "Manifesto." But in the end that felt far too pretentious. And, hey, it is an "Agenda." As you might expect, "Excellence" is in there too—it's an even more important idea/state-of-mind/action item in 2019, with, in particular, technology most likely embarking on a job-destruction binge.
So you will be the judge. This one-pager has been through perhaps 100 drafts—no kidding.
It's the best I can do.
(FYI: The first of ten points in the Agenda is about my hobbyhorse.2019: EEE/Extreme Employee Engagement. Hence I have included a second 1-pager, titled Extreme Employee Engagement.
(FYI: A special thanks to Zach First and Rick Wartzman at the Drucker Institute for pushing my thinking several steps forward—especially on the topic of the damage done by the dreadful Maximizing Shareholder Value "movement.")
In Perth, Tom spoke to the Australian Institute of Management Western Australia (AIM WA), a nonprofit dedicated to Excellence in management and leadership in public and private organizations.
Slides are here:
Australian Institute of Management WA
In New Zealand for another three weeks. But I'm heading to Perth next week to speak to the Australian Institute of Management WA (Western Australia). I'm putting together an up-to-date "Master" presentation which summarizes my thinking as honed in the past couple of months, particularly last week when I was at the University of Auckland Business School, speaking to a w-i-d-e variety of groups.
So this compact ("only" 269 slides) presentation is an SOE/Summary Of Everything as of Feb-March 2019.
In particular I single out my two big newish themes: "E-Cubed"/Extreme Employee Engagement and Extreme Humanization. The big idea is that to contend with the AI tsunami we have to double down on employee development rather than use tech to promiscuously cut jobs. And we have to double down on adding the human touches which make a customer interaction memorable as well as effective. Here's the way I put it in one slide, based on my friends at Metro Bank in the UK:
Thrill customers (turn them into loyal message-spreading 'Fans') AND create good jobs AND earn big bucks AND embarrass the tech-gaga/cost-cutting-obsessed/short-term-shareholder-maximizing narrow-minded-job-and-sustainability-destroyers.”
FYI, here's the Metro Bank mantra which so thoroughly incorporates these ideas:
Are you going to cost cut your way to prosperity? Or are you going to spend your way to prosperity?”
Over-invest in our people, over-invest in our facilities.”
Cost cutting is a death spiral. Our whole story is growing revenue.”
All yours ...
(Suggestion: Check out the two "FIRST THINGS BEFORE FIRST THINGS" sections near the beginning of the presentation. Though not annotated, they mostly speak for themselves, I think.)