Monday, August 12, 2013

Over Controlling

Controlling is one of the duties of a leader, but controls can go too far.  The excellent leader guards against the tendency of controls to accumulate with negative consequences.

Businesses are plagued by cause-and-effect fallacies—because we do certain things, certain things happen.  Sales contests are one example. Does it produce an increase in sales or just move revenues from one period to another? Controls are another.

Systems, policies, and procedures tend to accumulate, stifling performance. The excellent leader systematically subjects the organization’s activities to “so what” and “if what” questioning. They are diligent about eliminating and simplifying. They understand that activity, “work,” creates work. They first place priority on effectiveness, “doing the right thing,” but second they look for efficiency, “doing things right,” and in most cases that means simplifying and eliminating. Steve Jobs was relentless. His focus on simplifying and eliminating was notorious to the point that he eliminated the "on" and "off" button from devices. It is unnecessary he said; the device knows when it is not being used, and it knows when you start to use it. So why bother?

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It is Nashville, a history-making flood, a beautiful attorney, a deadly secret, and wine to kill for--The Claret Murders, the latest Mark Rollins mystery adventure by author Tom Collins


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