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Illustration by James Yang The flight attendant had to ask her twice, “Anything to drink, ma’am?” “Oh, sorry. Water, no ice, please,” said Noelle Freeman, the CFO of Franklin Climate Systems. Watching the clouds out her window at 30,000 feet, she’d been deep in thought. She was on her way...
Jon Feingersh/Getty Images Planning has long been one of the cornerstones of management. Early in the twentieth century Henri Fayol identified the job of managers as to plan, organize, command, coordinate, and control. The capacity and willingness of managers to plan developed throughout the century. Management by Objectives (MBO) became...
david malan/Getty Images Imagine you are a member of a purchasing team. Your manager sets a goal: she wants everyone on your team to make at least one deal with a supply company of their choice. You end up signing a deal with a supplier who offers a great...
Catherine Lane/Getty Images Sometimes it happens that a candidate who had the right credentials, seemed to fly through the interview process, and had lovely references turns out to be an unexpected problem after hiring. If it hasn’t happened to you yet, consider yourself lucky, because only 19% of new...
Jens Magnusson/Getty Images As an executive coach, I speak regularly at corporate leadership development programs. During discussions, participants often confess the real reason they’re in the room, and it’s rarely “to grow and learn.” Time and again, the reasons include: they are checking a box on their development plan,...
Carol Yepes/Getty Images Sure, everyone wants to be happy. But what kind of happiness do people want? Is it happiness experienced moment-to-moment? Or is it being able to look back and remember a time as happy? Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman described this distinction as “being happy in your...
anniepaddington/Getty Images Who wouldn’t want a meaningful career and better balance between work and home? For many of us, it’s finances that keep us from making a career change. Sure, our current job has lost its spark, but it’s stable. Dependable. Reliable. Steady. We worry and wonder: What would...
Oliver Burston/Getty Images While overall adoption of artificial intelligence remains low among businesses (about 20% upon our last study), senior executives know that AI isn’t just hype. Organizations across sectors are looking closely at the technology to see what it can do for their business. As they should—we estimate...
Ricardo Lima/Getty Images Many people believe that being a good manager only requires common sense, and that it is therefore easy to be one. If this were true, good managers would be commonplace at all levels of more organizations, and as a result, employee engagement and retention would be...
Gillian Blease/Getty Images Knowing which organizations perform the best on any particular dimension used to require subjective surveys or painstaking research. Today, the data to answer those questions exists — it’s captured by the software-as-a-service firms whose services companies use to run their businesses. Mainstream software companies are beginning...

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