• The Five Qualities of Good Visions

    Because everything derives from the high-level vision, the team’s overall leader should invest more energy in it than any other early planning material. The five most important characteristics are: simplifying, intentional (goal-driven), consolidated, inspirational, and memorable.

    — Making Things Happen: Mastering Project Management by Scott Berkun

  • A SMaC recipe is a set of durable operating practices that create a replicable and consistent success formula. The word “SMaC” stands for Specific, Methodical, and Consistent. You can use the term “SMaC” as a descriptor in any number of ways: as an adjective (“ Let’s build a SMaC system”), as a noun (“ SMaC lowers risk”), and as a verb (“ Let’s SMaC this project”). A solid SMaC recipe is the operating code for turning strategic concepts into reality, a set of practices more enduring than mere tactics. Tactics change from situation to situation, whereas SMaC practices can last for decades and apply across a wide range of circumstances.

    — Great by Choice: Uncertainty, Chaos, and Luck–Why Some Thrive Despite Them All (Good to Great Book 5) by Jim Collins, Morten T. Hansen

  • Trust comes from being a part of a culture or organization with a common set of values and beliefs. Trust is maintained when the values and beliefs are actively managed. If companies do not actively work to keep their Golden Circle in balance — clarity, discipline and consistency — then trust starts to break down. A company, indeed any organization, must work actively to remind everyone WHY the company exists. WHY it was founded in the first place. What it believes.

    They need to hold everyone in the company accountable to the values and guiding principles. It’s not enough to just write them on the wall — that’s passive. Bonuses and incentives must revolve around them. The company must serve those whom they wish to serve it.

    — Start with Why: How Great Leaders Inspire Everyone to Take Action by Simon Sinek

  • Management by Objectives: The Planning Process Applied to Daily Work

    The system of management by objectives assumes that because our concerns here are short-range, we should know quite well what our environment demands from us “…”

    The idea behind MBO is extremely simple: If you don’t know where you’re going, you will not get there. Or, as an old Indian saying puts it, “If you don’t know where you’re going, any road will get you there.” A successful MBO system needs only to answer two questions:

    1. Where do I want to go? (The answer provides the objective.)
    2. How will I pace myself to see if I am getting there? (The answer gives us milestones or key results.)

    — High Output Management by Andrew S. Grove

  • The story of a new product, from conception to widespread use and high market share, is usually one of ups and downs. There are so many facets of business to learn, from production to sales to marketing, that for novice businesspeople trying to turn their great idea into a successful sales story, there are usually a few mistakes along the way.

    In addition, we often have to manage traversing our own peaks and valleys while trying to ensure that our current capacities don’t limit our ability to climb a higher peak. Using the lens of global and local maxima shows that often in bringing a new product to market, there are many times the owners reach a peak of success only to have to go down to a local minimum as they take on the next challenging climb.

    — The Great Mental Models Volume 3: Systems and Mathematics by Rhiannon Beaubien, Rosie Leizrowice

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