Tag Archives: operations

The way to prevent death by meeting is to make meetings matter

Paul Riecks

I believe we are wired to interact with each other for clarity of communication and greater understanding. It is possible to accomplish those things in a variety of ways — letters, emails, texts, posts on social media, voice mails, conference calls, video conferencing and plain, old-fashioned meetings. Using any of these mediums requires preparation and skill to achieve clarity of communication and greater understanding.

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Riding the wave: CEOs share their strategies for staying on top of fast growth

growth

Fast growth is both an exciting ride and a heavy responsibility. As people and systems scale, CEOs must keep a level head and decide which risks are worth taking, and which aren’t. SmartCEO and TD Bank assembled a group of New York-area alumni of SmartCEO’s Future 50 program, which celebrates fast growth, to share their strategies for boosting growth, and for staying in control while going 200 miles an hour.

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Can’t change the world? Then select a better one.

SmartCEO Columnist headshot

Much has been said about entrepreneurs and their oft-stated ambition to “change the world.” Making money is nice, they say, but they really want to “put a dent in the universe,” as Steve Jobs once said. Some see this as high-minded conceit: Change the world? Through tweets and hashtags? Photo oversharing? A world where everyone is constantly staring at their phones? Is this change actually for the better? All valid questions, to be sure.

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What Apple learned about creativity

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In 2010, IBM conducted the largest known sample of one-on-one CEO interviews, with more than 1,500 corporate heads and public sector leaders across 60 nations and 33 industries. In 2011, “The Conference Board” surveyed more than 799 executives. Both surveys were seeking an answer to the question: “What is most critical for future economic success?” Surprisingly, the answer didn’t have anything to do with finance, government, offshore competition or healthcare — it was creativity.

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Does your growth plan need a reality check?

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As yet another year rolls in, it’s time to ask yourself if you were really ready to flip the calendar page. Have you taken the time to look ahead by examining how far you’ve come? Before you charge full steam ahead into your growth plan, consider your sources of growth in 2013, and evaluate which practices to replicate or cease. Your business depends on it.

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Do your mission and vision statements fit their purpose?

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I’ve been to a lot of corporate meetings working to articulate a company’s mission and vision. Sometimes, it is great work and very actionable. Other times, it’s just a blur, and nobody in the organization can connect the mission and vision to their work. Even worse, customers don’t understand it. If you asked employees about your company’s purpose, what would they say?

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What’s your corporate mythology?

SmartCEO website headshot

Every organization has its own mythology, the stories it tells that help define who they are and how they came into existence. Some mythologies are novels full of grandiose events, some are memoirs full of insurmountable odds that were overcome and some are adventures with twists and turns that no one would have expected. And, of course, there are those that may or may not be fiction.

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Why creativity, not productivity, is key to profitability

Analyses suggest companies that focus on innovation achieve revenues and profits significantly higher than companies that focus solely on productivity. Furthermore, innovation is not the sole domain of Silicon Valley. Companies of all sizes and specialties can excel by making strategic efforts to support employees’ creativity.

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