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Leadership Insights - December 2020

“Remember this December, that love weighs more than gold.”

American Novelist


A Little More Like the Real Thing

We all have Zoom fatigue ( or Slack or Microsoft Teams fatigue) from 9 months of online interaction. Hopefully the introduction of vaccines points to an end on our daily dependence on these tools, but until then there are ways to make the online experience more fun or at least meaningful.

One news organization staffer shared how her team is energizing their Slack (in this case) experience to build rapport, connections (some employees hired this year have never met in person) and enhanced work and personal relationships. There are some great ideas in this short post “Culture check: I miss my team. Slack isn’t much, but here’s how it kept us close.

These tools aren’t going away even if we use them less in a post Covid world. (Salesforce just bought Slack for $28 billion. Zoom became a verb and Microsoft Teams has made impressive market share gains). This article offers a useful perspective on making these permanent additions to our productivity tool kits a little more like the real thing. (Thanks to Vistage Chair Keith Tessler for this article)

“A Surefire Predictor of Success”

Much of what we read about success tends to focus on what happened to a specific company or business leader; we know that they succeeded but we don’t always know why. As the saying goes, were they “lucky or smart?” Researchers at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University have summarized their research on why some make it and some don’t by unpacking the process in a brief article that explores “the mystery behind breakthrough success” in an attempt to answer the question “Why Do Some People Succeed After Failing, While Others Continue to Flounder? Their research produced what they called a “sure fire predictor of success” and the insight that “how you fail determines whether you’ll succeed.

Also recommended is Dr. Albert-Laszlo Barabasi’s The Formula: The Universal Laws of Success” whose research revealed that performance matters, but it’s usually not enough. This 5 video minute summary of his book will tell you what else is needed.

These two data-backed resources may help your team…and the young people in your life, succeed.

The Next Generation Gap

Gen Z , born in 2000 and after, will be the largest generation ever and they are just now entering the workforce. Communication has to some extent always been an issue between generations. “Traditionally, the onus has been on younger workers to assimilate into office culture. But with the culture itself changing as the office moves online, the eldest and youngest employees of organizations may find themselves having to meet in the middle.”

This brief post from the BBC’s ‘Life Project” outlines some of the communication issues that await the Baby Boomers as they invite Gen Z into their organizations. Take a few minutes to be prepared for “How young workers are changing the rules of ‘business speak.

Econ Recon

This Time It’s Different (Honest!): So writes ITR Economics’ Lauren Saidel-Baker in a short but cogent analysis of the “Covid recession.” To be sure, there’s been economic turbulence this year but Ms. Saidel-Baker encourages us to remember that the “current economic contraction was triggered by a global pandemic, not by economic imbalances that demanded a correction. Recent economic data corroborates the fact that this case really is different.” Check out her thoughts on why many of the usual metrics around this “recession” are less severe that the Great Recession of 2008 and Why This Time Really is Different

2021 Trends:Vistage Speaker Marc Emmer offers a look at 2021 Economic Trends (this information is available to non-members as well)


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