Peter Drucker: The Father of Modern Management Consulting

drucker-on-consultingPeter Drucker on Consulting is the book I have wanted to read for the last six years. Drucker has long been regarded as the “Father of Modern Management”. But after reading Dr. William Cohen’s new book, it is clear that Drucker is also the “Father of Modern Management Consulting” as well. Back in 2010, I had just been accepted to master’s program in leadership and had read Drucker’s classic book (aren’t all his books classics?), Managing the Nonprofit Organization (1990). My professor chose the text because in addition to teaching and writing, he like Drucker had the trifecta career of also being an organizational consultant. I quickly learned that this threefold path of writing, teaching, and consulting was a track that I too was called to and shortly thereafter read the third edition of Dr. William Cohen’s book, How to Make It Big as A Consultant (2001).

Fast forward to now and I am currently the Director of Coaching on Purpose, a leadership development consultancy for financial institutions. As an experienced management consultant and leadership coach, I have worked with dozens of nonprofit and for-profit companies, over the last six years, including numerous 501(c) 3 ministries, private schools and universities, and everything from homeless shelters, food banks, faith-based and religious institutions, to publically traded companies, dozens of community banks across the country, insurance companies, independent marketing firms, and large financial broker-dealers. In every one of my coaching or consulting engagements, my goal has remained the same: to add value to leaders and organizations by helping them clarify their mission, articulate their values, and take massive action towards achieving their vision. I believe this is my own way of helping clients answer Drucker’s Five Most Important Questions You Will Ever Ask about Your Organization (2008):

  1. What is our mission?
  2. Who is our customer?
  3. What does the customer value?
  4. What are our results?
  5. What is our plan?

Additionally, I am a certified leadership coach with C3 International, my professor’s boutique consulting firm. In 2013, I was named one of the Top Ten winners of the Global Peter Drucker Challenge, an international entrepreneurial and management essay competition sponsored in part by the Harvard Business Review and hosted in Vienna, Austria, in which my essay was titled “Leadership Lessons from the Stories of Steinbeck, Shakespeare, and Shaw: What Fiction can Teach Executives about Effectiveness”. Other Global Peter Drucker Challenge submissions include my titles “Consulting Churches in a Changing Culture” (2012), “Productivity, Performance, and Perfection: Why Managing Oneself in the Digital Age, Really Means Continuous Improvement for the Knowledge Worker” (2015), and “The Piety of Entrepreneurship: Sainthood in the Startup Society or How Bill Gates has done More Good for the World than Mother Teresa” (2016). I am also author of the “Coaching on Purpose White Paper for Strategic Planning, Based on the Father of Modern Management”, and the financial position paper, “The Need for Corporate Culture Coaching”, in which I synthesis research from the Stanford and Harvard Business Schools, the Korn Ferry Institute, Deloitte, Gallup’s poll on American workplace engagement, the Boston Consulting Group, and McKinsey & Co., and make the applications specific to financial services, recruiting and human resource initiatives.

The main impetus for my growth as a coach and consultant, in addition to raw field experience, has come through standing on the shoulders of giants by reading their works. This would include digesting all 39 of Peter Drucker’s books, several more about his life, dozens of his articles, and the five core titles in Dr. William Cohen’s Peter Drucker series: A Class with Drucker (2008), Drucker on Leadership (2009), Drucker on Marketing (2012), The Practical Drucker (2013), and now, Peter Drucker on Consulting (2016).

Peter Drucker on Consulting combines Drucker’s massive legacy, with Dr. Cohen’s own experiences in consulting, the history of the California Institute of Management of which Dr. Cohen co-founded and currently serves as President, and rare insights regarding the relationship Drucker had with McKinsey’s famed director Marvin Bower when they were both hired by the U.S. military as consultants. Dr. Cohen also makes some breakthrough comparisons of Drucker’s consulting work, in which he considered himself as a “social ecologist” with the scientific inventions of genius Albert Einstein wearing a white lab coat conducting experiments, and the fictional detective inquiries of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s, Sherlock Holmes, both as examples of Drucker’s ability to think ignorantly and ask a few questions.

Cohen also compares how Drucker’s business model, based on principles and ethics, differs than the genesis story of the “Big 3” of McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group, and Bain & Company. Other interesting stories feature tales of Drucker’s conversation with GE CEO, Jack Welch on core competencies, Cohen’s connection to Israel, and how General Colin Powell broke the ‘Peter Principle’ (not a reference to Peter Drucker).

Perhaps one of my favorite sections of this great book, is ‘What Makes an Outstanding Consultant?’ an adaption from Cohen’s recently updated classic, How to Make It Big as a Consultant, 4th Edition (2009).  Here Cohen outlines seven essential skills to management consulting:

  1. The ability to interact with all participants in a consulting engagement.
  2. The ability to diagnose problems correctly.
  3. The ability to find solutions that work.
  4. Technical expertise and knowledge.
  5. Good communication skills.
  6. Strong marketing and selling abilities.
  7. Managerial skills.

Dr. William Cohen’s Peter Drucker on Consulting: How to Apply Drucker’s Principles for Business Success is a masterpiece. Unlike any other book written about Drucker, Cohen’s latest submission uncovers little-known facts and subtle insights to this part of Drucker’s long legacy that no other Drucker scholar could offer. Cohen’s unique experiences as being Drucker’s first Ph.D. student, to his successful career in military, education, business, and consulting, and his development of the California Institute of Advanced Management, a graduate level consulting lab based on applying Drucker’s principles, makes Dr. Cohen’s latest work a must read for any aspiring consultant, leadership coach, or CEO. I highly recommend it!

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Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, & What Really Matters [Book Review]

Having an active website on the blogosphere has allowed me to connect with other authors, leaders, influencers, and decision makers from a variety of sectors and industries, and from all across the globe. And since my primary focus in life, work, and ministry, is connecting the biblical principles of disciple-making movements and apostolic church planting, with the rapidly expanding mission field that exists in today’s marketplace, I always enjoy connecting with other Kingdom-minded “change agents” and believers who are positively affecting their workplace with their faith and the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

One such acquaintance, is Chad Hamilton, CFP ®, author of the new book, Redefining Financial Freedom: A Gospel-Based Approach to Money (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2016) and Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2015). Chad and I share many similar interests, including both having a background in financial services, and a shared understanding of money as a heavenly resource from God, that requires intense responsibility, integrity, and stewardship.

Chad’s newest book, Redefining Financial Freedom: A Gospel-Based Approach to Money looks at three main money questions: I.) “How did you get it?” (Vocation), II.) “What are you doing with it?” (Investing), and III.) “What is it doing to you?” (Generosity). Redefining Financial Freedom is a book I’d highly recommend as it shows how true freedom is found in the Gospel of Jesus Christ, not in the idolatry or apathy of money.

In this post, however, I’d like to dig deeper into Chad’s previous book, Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters. In this work, Chad focuses on the internal motivators that drive our financial decision making. He argues that economics is less about rational choice and more about emotional desire. Noting that America is the most prosperous country in the history of the world, he also cites the rising debt pandemic across our country, the increasing amounts of personal bankruptcies, and the apparent lack of planning by the senior generation for retirement.

In his comments about the abundance of financial resources and the obvious lack of consumer discipline, I was reminded of a quote by businessman and sales coach, Brian Buffini: “We are drowning in information yet starving for wisdom”. Chad’s book, Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters stands out as a lighthouse, providing safe direction and much needed wisdom amid the current tumultuous financial seas.

Chad notes that behavioral economics only goes so far in leading us to the answer for our financial problems. The “how” doesn’t matter until someone understands the “why”. Chad states that “When it comes down to it, you really have one of two options: You can use your life to make money (chase little dreams). Or you can use your money to make a life (follow big dreams)” (pg. 5).

Essentially, what he is saying is that the need to change has to be real, authentic, and the true motivator for change, before financial education can have the intended effect. These two questions: 1.) “What do you have?” and 2.) “What do you believe?” provide the ideological framework for the books contents.

In Section I: Human Capital (The Seed), Chad discusses key questions about our financial worldview, which include the subject of work, beliefs about money, finding true meaning in life, and discovering purpose. He argues how discerning the latter will lead to both passion and our untapped potential when we pursue inspiring dreams rather than just practical plans.

The bulk of Section II: Spiritual Capital (The Soil), centralizes on the four core “Money Personality Types”.  1.) The Pleasure Seeker: characterized by Marlon Brando, 2.) The Mogul, represented by Donald Trump, 3.) The Guardian, portrayed by Howard Hughes, and 4.) The Star, as seen in the life of Andrew Carnegie.

The Pleasure Seeker is driven by comfort and aspires to having freedom. The Mogul seeks power and wants his image or status to be displayed for all to admire. The Guardian wants control and security, and The Star’s driving emotion is approval from others and has an ultimate aspiration of love and self-worth. The historical characters exemplified in these four generic stereotypes are telling.

While Marlon Brando, is an apparent enigma, his talent was obvious. When it comes to the characterization of money and this personality type, the themes of indulgence and apathy become apparent. As Chad describes, “An endless array of possibilities and choices can be paralyzing” (pg. 69). While Donald Trump has been in the eye of a media storm for the last 12 – 16 months or so for his surprising rise to GOP presidential candidate fame, despite his over-inflated ego, his popular nomination is yet to be secured. If it will happen, our country will need to learn how to deal, and possibly even overcome, the psychographics described by Chad Hamilton in the identification of this personality. Negative character traits include narcissistic arrogance, a habit of manipulation and intimidation, the ability to provoke fear in others, and a disconnection from reality. The completive nature of pride and an unhealthy desire to win is a dangerous and often illegal combination when it comes to financial matters.

The Guardian, illustrated by the late and equally erratic, Howard Hughes is another portrayal of rich dysfunction. Of all the obsessive compulsive idiosyncrasies of Howard Hughes, Chad focuses on the billionaire aviator’s desire for control, to the point of an attempted avoidance of any contact with germs. He makes the point that “Having money can create the illusion of being in control of a life or destiny” (pg. 77). This is, of course, ludicrous. Only God is in control.

The Star, as represented by the rags to riches story of steel magnate, Andrew Carnegie is a great tale of the need for approval many feel. Even as an accomplished industrialist, and at one time, the world’s richest man, Carnegie still collected a number of newspaper comments that he kept in a file labeled “Gratitude and Sweet Words”. I suppose some people just need their ego stroked every now and then. Bit in the end, our affirmation should not be determined by our asset sheets, bank accounts, or stock options. Instead, our identity comes from Christ, and Christ alone.

In Section III.) Financial Capital (The Green) Chad begins to connect the financial nuts and bolts with the philosophical principles outlined in the first two sections. In this third part, he covers the topics of investing with conviction, portfolio construction, retirement and estate planning, and insurance.

Finally, in Section IV.) Social Capital (The Fruit), Chad uncovers the myths of the self-made man, stresses the point of being a part of a larger story, and admonishes a form of servant leadership, perfectly displayed by Jesus Christ with a parallel of qualities from Jim Collins’ Level 5 Leader in Good to Great.

Again, the themes of biblical stewardship, hope and freedom in Christ, run throughout the book. Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters by Chad Hamilton, CFP ® is a wonderful guide that can really help millions of people understand how their money matters to God.

You can read more about Chad’s newest book, Redefining Financial Freedom through my review here

And here is my author interview with Chad

Deep Wealth

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Money Talks – So What is It Saying About You? [Book Review]

Having an active website on the blogosphere has allowed me to connect with other authors, leaders, influencers, and decision makers from a variety of sectors and industries, and from all across the globe. And since my primary focus in life, work, and ministry, is connecting the biblical principles of disciple-making movements and apostolic church planting, with the rapidly expanding mission field that exists in today’s marketplace, I always enjoy connecting with other Kingdom-minded “change agents” and believers who are positively affecting their workplace with their faith and the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

One such acquaintance, is Chad Hamilton, CFP ®, author of the new book, Redefining Financial Freedom: A Gospel-Based Approach to Money (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2016) and Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2015). Chad and I share many similar interests, including both having a background in financial services, and a shared understanding of money as a heavenly resource from God, that requires intense responsibility, integrity, and stewardship.

Chad’s new book, Redefining Financial Freedom: A Gospel-Based Approach to Money address, what I think, is one of the most critical factors in stewarding finances, namely, the issue of idolatry. Jesus said you can’t serve both God and Mammon (or money, see Matthew 6:24), and in fact, our Lord actually teaches more about money and stewardship than he does even prayer.

Jesus knew that we become like what we worship. If we worship the Lord and handle our money in a biblical, God-honoring way, then we are more closely being made into His image. Its Christ’s character formed in us. If however, we idolize money, putting its attainment and accumulation as the centerpiece of our heart, then the Scripture is true that “It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the Kingdom of God” (Mark 10:25, NIV).

Not only does Chad’s book tackle the thorny issues of idolatry, but he also teaches how when the pendulum swings the opposite direction, that apathy can creep in. He argues instead for a “Gospel-Based Approach to Money” which will lead to increased faith and freedom in following God’s intentions for our financial futures.

The three big money questions that Chad uses to structure his book are Section I: How Did You Get It? (How we think about WORK) This part deals with the often neglected discussion of vocation in wealth building. Considering some of the recent works I’ve read on discerning God’s calling on your life, I found this section particularly helpful. The two ends of the spectrum, or pendulum –the metaphor Chad uses, is “Apathy”: I work in order to do the things I really want to do, and “Idolatry”: What I do is who I am.

As Christians, our identity is first and foremost wrapped up in who God says we are i.e., his beloved children. We have been adopted by our Heavenly Father through the atoning sacrifice of Christ Jesus. When we rethink our vocation, as the voice of God calling us into our deeper destiny and purpose in life, we understand then that our job is really just another form of stewardship. It is a ministry and a vehicle for adding value to the world while proclaiming the Gospel in word and deed. This is the middle-ground of Freedom that Chad advocates. It’s seeing work as a vocation or calling to serve someone else, not a chore, burden or curse.

The second question is Section II: What Are You Doing With It? (Considerations for INVESTING) which offers some amazingly practical observations on the so-called sacred-secular divide, the real purpose of business, and the role Christian values and a Christian worldview should play in investing.
The third and final money question is Section III: What is It Doing to You (The Importance of Giving & Generosity). This crucially important, and often overlooked, last topic discusses the effect our views and actions with money have on us spiritually. Chad shows how the “Apathy” angle creates in us a need to feel in control and self-reliant, counter-themes to the New Testament; while the swing to the other side, to “Idolatry” creates an expectation for money to fulfill your deepest needs and desires. He also mentions briefly four common financial motivators, including control, comfort, power, and approval, and shares a story of what he refers to as a “Miracle in the Free Market”.

Essentially, the message of Redefining Financial Freedom is that our only true hope is found in Jesus. The money will eventually disappoint us, elude us, and create a false sense of security. Christ is our salvation. He is our Rock and our Fortress. We should be generous because God was radically generous to us, giving up his one and only son to death on the cross, only to be raised again so that we may join him in an abundant and eternal life. Our generosity in financial matters and the way in which we live our lives can truly have an enormous impact on others around us, and actually, yield eternal rewards in heaven.

With personal and professional experiences from the trenches of financial services, Chad Hamilton, CFP ® offers incredibly practical insights and some penetratingly deep truths about the spiritual consequences of our potential financial behavior. With a focus on what Scripture teaches, and references from the likes of C.S. Lewis, Richard Foster, G. K. Chesterton, and Jacques Ellul, the reader is surely in for a treat. Redefining Financial Freedom is a book I highly recommend.

You can read more about Redefining Financial Freedom through my author interview with Chad found here: https://joshualeehenry.com/2016/06/27/redefining-financial-freedom-author-interview/

Redefining Financial Freedom - Book Cover

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Are You Doing Things ‘to’ Your Leaders or ‘with’ Them? [Guest Post]

Leaders Ready Now

 

(This post is an excerpt from the introduction to Leaders Ready Now.)

Are You Doing Things to Your Leaders or with Them?

As a business leader, you may speak frequently to individuals or groups of executives about the future of the business, and perhaps you review key leaders’ development plans or even act as a mentor. All these activities are useful, but they are not what accelerated learners really want and need most from you—and they are not the activities that generate the greatest amount of energy in an acceleration system.

Ask any motivated, emerging leader what would truly ignite his or her energy, and the answer will likely involve working with senior leaders to solve current business dilemmas. As one acceleration-program participant put it, “The leadership training is good, but what I really want is a piece of the action.” She wasn’t talking about more money; she wanted a piece of the business action—to work more closely with leaders who were in the thick of it.

This doesn’t mean that you have to put core businesses at risk by giving junior executives too much responsibility—it means that top leaders need to reframe the ways in which they spend time with accelerated learners and create development experiences that are truly transformational. Instead of offering a problem for an individual learner to solve alone (with tips and guidance from a senior leader), the organization needs to pinpoint a problem that a senior leader or team currently faces and then enlist the accelerated learner to help solve it. Leaders and learners should work on business challenges together, learning and growing simultaneously.

To learn the game, one must play the game. If you aim to prepare more leaders—and do it more quickly—you must put them in the game, and much sooner than what might feel comfortable. You must play with them, learning and growing together, faster than you otherwise would.

*****

Matthew J. Paese, Ph.D., is Vice President of Succession and C-Suite Services for Development Dimensions International (DDI). Matt’s work has centered on the application of succession, assessment, and development approaches as they apply to boards, CEOs, senior management teams, and leaders across the pipeline. He consults, coaches, speaks, and conducts research around all those topics and more.

Audrey B. Smith, Ph.D., is Senior Vice President for Global Talent Diagnostics at DDI. Audrey’s customer-driven innovation and global consulting insights have helped shape DDI’s succession, selection, and development offerings, from the C-suite to the front line. She has been a key strategist and solution architect, encompassing technology-enabled virtual assessments and development aligned to current business challenges.

William C. Byham, Ph.D., is Executive Chairman of DDI. He cofounded the company in 1970 and has worked with hundreds of the world’s largest organizations on executive assessment, executive development, and succession management. Bill authored Zapp!® The Lightning of Empowerment, a groundbreaking book that has sold more than 3 million copies. He has coauthored 23 other books, including seminal works on the assessment center method.

 

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Redefining Financial Freedom [Author Interview]

Having an active website on the blogosphere has allowed me to connect with other authors, leaders, influencers, and decision makers from a variety of sectors and industries, and from all across the globe. And since my primary focus in life, work, and ministry, is connecting the biblical principles of disciple-making movements and apostolic church planting, with the rapidly expanding mission field that exists in today’s marketplace, I always enjoy connecting with other Kingdom-minded “change agents” and believers who are positively affecting their workplace with their faith and the power of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

One such acquaintance, is Chad Hamilton, CFP ®, author of the new book, Redefining Financial Freedom: A Gospel-Based Approach to Money (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2016) and Deep Wealth: An Exploration of Money, Meaning, and What Really Matters (PFI Publishing: Denver, 2015). Chad and I share many similar interests, including both having a background in financial services, and a shared understanding of money as a heavenly resource from God, that requires intense responsibility, integrity, and stewardship. In fact, our first encounter occurred over a review I had written of Andy Stanley’s book, How to Be Rich: It’s Not What You Have, It’s What You Do With What You Have (Zondervan, 2013). Recently, I interviewed Chad about his own book, Redefining Financial Freedom, and think that you’ll find our dialogue insightful.

  1. How does Redefining Financial Freedom fit with or differ from your previous book, Deep Wealth?

Deep Wealth was written for anybody, regardless of their perspective on faith, whereas Redefining Financial Freedom assumes the reader is a follower of Jesus.  That allowed me to dive deeper into the scriptural implications of financial decision-making in RFF.  There are certain similar themes running throughout both of them, particularly the need for more integration and less compartmentalization as it pertains to money, work, and spirituality.

  1. What is the goal you have for readers of Redefining Financial Freedom?

I want to challenge the reader by upending conventional wisdom about financial matters.  We need to be intentional in how we approach financial topics and creatively reimagine what it could look like to truly embrace a redemptive perspective.

  1. How do you connect the concept of freedom in faith to finances?

As human beings, we are all made to worship.  We all shape our lives around what we love most.  The only question is the object of our love.  Anytime we love anything more than we love God – whether that is a career, a relationship, or a certain status or image – it will control us.  And we will not be freed, no matter how much money we accumulate.  Therefore, true financial freedom is contingent on freedom in Christ.

  1. There are many questions about money. What makes the three you chose to address so important?

I chose three that are, frankly, easy to remember and that span all aspects of financial considerations.  Of the 3 money questions – 1) How did you get it? 2) What are you doing with it? 3) What is it doing to you? – we often miss the first and last ones.  We will never be truly free if our notion of freedom implies that we are liberated from work.  Instead, we need to learn to be liberated in our work by understanding the meaning of vocation or a calling to serve.  And, in terms of the last question, do we really ask what money is doing to our souls?  Jesus talked about money a lot.  Approximately, 15% of everything he said had to do with money.  His primary objective was to show that money is a great magnifier – it reveals what we truly love.  Therefore, it is tremendously important that we understand why we are making the financial decisions we are making.

  1. Can you explain the pendulum swings of financial idolatry and financial apathy?

I look at idolatry and apathy as the two big barriers to freedom.  The Bible says that sin is really a matter of disordered loves so, as a result, we are prone to attribute way too much importance to what money can do for us (idolatry) and too little importance on what money can do to us (apathy).  It is a matter of idolatry when we look to money to provide us only those things that God can provide (i.e., status, love, security, comfort).  On the other hand, we struggle with apathy when we don’t care to even ask questions pertaining to the types of investments we are making or the meaning of the work we are doing.

  1. Why is having the right attitude about vocation necessary for stewarding financial resources biblically?

The fact is that most of us will spend the majority of our adult lives doing some kind of work.  Money does not just appear from out of nowhere – at least not for most of us!  It is the result of our human capital (our time, talent, and abilities) being converted into financial capital.  And when the Bible speaks of stewardship, it is referring not only to our financial resources, but also to our work or vocation.  And if we don’t have the right attitude about our vocation, it will negatively impact how we think about other financial goals such as retirement or gifting.

  1. Why is work both external and internal?

Work is how we properly utilize our God-given gifts and abilities (internal) to help serve customers and/or the community (external).

  1. How can I begin to tangibly integrate my Christian values into investing?

I’d encourage you to go to the Christian Investment Forum (christianinvestmentforum.org).  There is a lot of good information there – everything from an introduction to the topic to performance studies on the impact of utilizing values-based investment screens to details about fund companies that incorporate a faith-based approach to investing.

  1. Your “Gospel-Based Approach to Money” is very holistic, some would even say reminiscent of the Hebraic paradigm. Why do you think so many North American believers look at finances with more of a Platonic worldview, where the compartmentalizing of finances allows people to use the “end result” of giving to justify the “means” of unethical monetary accumulation?

This is what people are trained to do.  If you look at the myriad books and educational programs out there from Christian financial gurus, they nearly all take what I would call a “Law Based Approach to Money.”  They teach you to follow certain financial principles because… it will allow you to be debt free or financially secure or live your best life now, etc.  A gospel-based approach to money, on the other hand, says you follow certain financial principles because the story of Jesus Christ has so gripped your heart that your grip on money is loosened in ways that benefit you and others around you.  We don’t need more teaching about personal finance that sprinkles in Bible verses or Biblical principles; we need more teaching that starts with the gospel and, consequently, reshapes the way we relate to money.  Ultimately, we don’t need good advice that informs us; we need the Good News that transforms us.

  1. Can you explain what you mean by a “double bottom line”?

Traditionally, most people have invested purely in search of profits. If you wanted to make a difference in the community, you would do that through your gifting.

This resulted in a compartmentalized approach which essentially divided financial intentions into two buckets — one for investing and one for charitable giving.  This approach means you are seeking to achieve a financial return with a strategy of traditional investing and a social return through philanthropy.

The problem with this approach is that it ignores a fundamental reality.  All businesses have a social return.  The only question is whether it is a positive or negative one.  The solution is to redefine “the bottom line” you are trying to achieve with investing.  If you are no longer singularly concerned with financial returns but also social returns, then you are taking a “double-bottom line” approach toward investing.

  1. Where can my subscribers connect with you?

Go to RedefiningFinancialFreedom.com or email me at chad_ham@msn.com

 

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“Under New Management” [Author Interview]

David Burkus is the author of the new book, Under New Management. He is host of the Radio Free Leader podcast and associate professor of management at Oral Roberts University. Please visit his website at www.davidburkus.com.

 

(JLH) One of my personal heroes is Peter F. Drucker, the man whom Businessweek called the “Father of Modern Management”. How, if at all, do you see Drucker’s teaching on management by objectives, executive effectiveness, building on strengths, and reducing the salary compensation of C-level leaders down to a more reasonable and fair amount, related to the techniques you discuss in Under New Management?

(DB) I see a pretty big connection. Drucker was a visionary who coined the shift from industrial to knowledge work and predicts it scaling. There’s a reason we call him the father of “modern” management. In contrast, Fredrick Taylor being the father of scientific management. That older thinking is really what I take aim at in my book. We made the shift from industrial to knowledge but we took Taylor’s management with us. Drucker laid a foundation for modern management, executives and entrepreneurial leaders started to experiment with new ideas, researchers also experimented with organizational psychologies principles. The hope is that Under New Management summarizes and blends a lot of the wisdom from all of these pioneers.

 

(JLH) You have achieved a great deal of recognition for your contribution to management, including writing for the Harvard Business Review and Forbes, and being listed on the “On the Radar” category of the 2016 Thinkers50. What do you attribute your earned success and notoriety too?

(DB) You know, Drucker loved the phrase “opportunity favors the prepared mind.” We’re in the midst of a huge shift in connectivity for the whole world and it’s giving voice to a lot of people. I’m grateful to be one of them and I’m hoping to do my part to continue to invite others into the conversation.

 

(JLH) You’re an associate professor of management at Oral Roberts University, an interdenominational Christian school, that while recognized in 2012 by the Princeton Review as one of 123 institutions in the ‘Best in the West” regional ranking, isn’t necessarily known for its business college, like say Sloan at MIT, Ross at Michigan, Wharton at Pennsylvania, or Tuck at Dartmouth. Yet, you are a best-selling author and award-winning podcaster. Is it your personal platform, your work in the classroom, or some combination of both, that has helped you reach a broader audience than just at ORU?

(DB) I think it’s again part of that shift. I’m proud of my work with ORU and, while it’s not a “brand name” school I think that forced me to thinking differently about how to get a message heard…and that led me to the aforementioned shift.

 

(JLH) What advice would you have for graduate students, or millennial leaders considering transitioning into a business or managerial professorship?

(DB) I’d say build a platform independent of your university, whether you’re a doctoral student or already in a faculty role. Your research is important, absolutely, but it’s also about what managers can do with your research. That part likely won’t be covered by the journal you publish in, so it’s on you to write about how leaders can use what you’ve researched.

 

(JLH) How important is it for an author to begin building their own platform?

(DB) I’m not a big fan of the term “platform” because people aren’t planks. You build an audience by sharing and giving. The larger that audience the more they can help you share your message (providing you’re giving valuable content). I don’t know that I would try and launch a book without one, so I’d look to blogs, podcasts, or other publications you can write for to refine your craft but also to build an audience.

 

(JLH) How did you work your way into being a contributor for HBR and Forbes?

(DB) I wrote…a lot. I made friends with people who wrote. Eventually they noticed.

 

(JLH) Of the best-practices you take aim at in Under New Management, which one or ones were you most surprised by in your research?

(DB) Salary transparency. I expected to research it and come down in favor or privacy and transparency. But the research was overwhelming. Salary secrecy hurts employees and does productivity damage to the organization. It’s not worth it. Sure, it feels uncomfortable sharing what you get paid, but it’s a lot more uncomfortable to wonder if you’re being discriminated against, or compensated fairly, or even appreciated for your contribution.

 

(JLH) Where do you see management’s next uncharted territory?

(DB) I’m looking into the larger ecosystem. Every company exists in a larger network of vendors, suppliers, customers, and competitors and where you embed yourself in that ecosystem and how you move through it dramatically effects the business. I’m interested in looking more into that.

 

(JLH) You teach courses on strategic leadership at Oral Roberts. What is the biggest issue(s) CEO’s need to be aware of, or at least consider in today’s tumultuous business environment?

(DB) “Great leaders don’t innovate the product, they innovate the factory.” This was true when Fredrick Taylor started reinventing physical factories. It was true when Peter Drucker started describe the shift from factory to office. And it’s true now. Leaders need to take a deep look at their organization and how they can better design it to give their people the autonomy and resources they need to bring value to the organization. Innovative products and services always follow innovative management. That’s the core idea of Under New Management.

 

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Is Your Workforce Engaged? [Guest Post]

According to a recent Gallup study, a mere 30 percent of the workforce is engaged. So if 30 percent of employees are engaged, 70 percent are disengaged. Additional research by Gallup reveals that engaged workers are the most innovative.

As if motivating employees weren’t enough of a challenge, today’s workforce dynamics are more complex than ever before. Five generations are represented in most organizations, with Baby Boomers and Millennials comprising the two largest in number. Many Boomers have delayed their retirements because they cannot afford to stop working or because they prefer to work. These difficult decisions affect their career goals and the organization’s succession planning goals, too. And Millennials as a whole have introduced additional nuances to the world of work, including a desire for greater work-life balance and flexibility, technology savvy, and a more collaborative work style.

How can you engage employees who have very personal and unique motivation factors? How do you communicate your organization’s vision effectively and gain buy-in from such a diverse workforce?

As you may know too well, if you don’t engage them, you won’t keep them. Employee retention is another challenge leaders are dealing with today, especially as younger generations of employees are more inclined to move on from an organization after only several years on the job, in search of more challenging or meaningful work.

CTDO magazine understands the complexities of the workforce challenges you face as a leader. This free, quarterly, digital magazine is dedicated to addressing these big-picture issues and their underlying causes and providing practical, solutions-based content for you. Read more in the Spring 2016 CTDO.

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Ann Parker is manager of the Human Capital Community of Practice and the Senior Leaders & Executives Community of Practice at ATD. Prior to this position, she worked at ATD for five years in an editorial capacity, primarily for TD magazine, and most recently as a senior writer and editor. In this role, Ann had the privilege to talk to many training and development practitioners, hear from a variety of prominent industry thought leaders, and develop a rich understanding of the profession’s content. Visit Chief Talent Development Officer Magazine.

CTDO magazine

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