Wednesday, October 30, 2013

3 Key Leadership Tips From Twitter CEO Dick Costolo

Twitter is about to go public so there has been a lot of press coverage about the company, the founders, and the current CEO Dick Costolo. When I read about companies like Twitter I am often amazed at the ability of a company to grow so quickly and to still have some semblance of order. This is never done without leadership. The leadership at a company like Twitter makes the difference between a long-term success and a company that is gone a couple of years after the founders cash out from a hyped IPO.

Recently I read an article called 3 Key Leadership Tips From Twitter CEO Dick Costolo. The first of his points is "don't try to make friends". He then goes on to say "As a leader, you need to care deeply, deeply about your people while not worrying or really even caring about what they think about you," Costolo said "Managing by trying to be liked is the path to ruin." He realizes that leadership isn't about being liked but it's about doing the right thing. In the long-run doing the right things leads to being liked but that isn't the initial goal.

Secondly he pointed out "there are many different ways to be a successful leader" meaning it's not possible to imitate what others are doing or what they have done. Be yourself - as long as that is working. If you try to just be like someone else it will probably lead to failure. It's amazing when a tech star is written about that you start to hear others copying him or her. How many people started wearing turtlenecks and demanding "perfection on the inside of the computer" after Steve Jobs shared that with others. That worked for him, but it may not work for others.

The last point was to "be transparent." You and I don't fool anyone. Either we are living as we are on the inside or everyone will eventually figure that out. Be true to yourself, improve yourself, and enjoy your success.

Monday, October 28, 2013

See the Waste - Eliminate the Waste

2 Second Lean Book | Lean Thinking | Lean Culture

What is lean? Does lean lead to reducing the workforce? Often when people hear about or think of lean they see it as the enemy because lean has been used as an excuse to let people go. It's no wonder lean programs have trouble working in some environments.

To get to the core of lean it is necessary to understand that there are two pillars of lean - respect for people and reduction of waste. This often leads to adding people because a company becomes more competitive and needs to do more for customers.

Here is another video from 2SecondLean that answers the question of "what is lean?".

Friday, October 25, 2013

Lean Airplane

2 Second Lean Book | Lean Thinking | Lean Culture

There is a great website I have been spending time on recently. It's the 2SecondLean website. The developer of the website owned and runs a business in the Northwestern US and from the looks of this site he has a successful business. I am going to share a video about a lean adjustment he made to his plane and this is the epitome of what I see with lean. It's simple, quick, and effective.

There are some buttons on the dash of his plane and if they are not set properly after landing the plane they can drain the power off of the battery. Take a few minutes to watch this video and then ask yourself "what is bugging me at home or at work"? Often small improvements can make a big difference over time.

Monday, October 21, 2013

The One Thing Successful People Do Every Day

Everyone is busy. Everyone seems to have more to do than can be done in a normal day. For many, people the current world of information overload and being busy has become an excuse for letting down on certain things that need to be done.

Successful people are successful because they are willing to do what normal people are not willing to do - and they will do it over and over. Often these are not huge differences but they are small differences that happen over and over and over.

In a recent Forbes article, William Arruda wrote about one thing that successful people do every day that the unsuccessful don't.

Every day successful people work on their own brand. This means that people are working to make sure what they are doing is visible to those around them. Here is a great quote from the article, "“Busy” is the most common reason people give me for not doing anything to build their brand so they can advance their career.  They make time for emails and meetings and teleconferences, but they don’t capture the true benefits of all those activities. Working in their career is getting in the way of working on their career. Sound familiar?"

This article outlines 5 things to do to build your brand. It's a good read.