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Management

Every good manager knows that people are their most valuable resource. In these articles we show you how to manage effectively to get great things from the people you manage. We'll tell you how to create powerful teams, nurture talent and prevent conflict. All our articles contain the best new business thinking from around the world.

Design a better company culture

Employee disengagement is a global problem. In the US alone, companies lose up to $550bn in lost productivity every year.

Writing for Harvard Business Review, Alexander Osterwalder, Yves Pigneur and Kavi Guppta say the solution lies in cultivating a better company culture.

They describe a tool – “the culture map”, which will help you do just that.

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Keep calm and carry on communicating

How do you react to an angry customer, a difficult colleague or a tense negotiation? Great communicators face all kinds of conflict and know exactly what to say and how to say it.

Communicate well and others will trust in your ability to lead and support them.

Think on your feet and people will see you as credible, professional, reliable and confident.

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Seagull managers: How to regain control of your team

Seagull managers allow situations to spiral out of control before swooping in with superficial or thoughtless solutions and flying off again, leaving the team to clear up the mess.

It’s a management style that causes stress and confusion – and it’s on the increase.

Writing for Forbes, Travis Bradberry explains how to regain control by focusing on what should be your number-one...

Tactics for managing team conflict

Healthy debate in the workplace is a good thing. But what can you do when positive behaviours give way to infighting?

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Five reputational risks and how to plan for them

You can’t avoid scandal, but you can prepare for it. Here’s how to plan for five of the most serious reputational risks to your business.

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Redesign your life for the sake of your business

Design thinking can improve your health, wellbeing and, ultimately, your executive performance. 

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Why ‘ideal workers’ are bad for business

Do your employees arrive early, stay late, pull all-nighters, work weekends and stay on-call 24/7 via smartphones?

Many organisations expect employees to become such dedicated “ideal workers”, despite the...

How to lead the team you inherit

What can you do if the team you take over created the problem you’ve been hired to fix?

The best-known team-building framework is “forming, storming, norming and performing”. But that assumes you’re building a team from scratch.

In a recent article for Harvard Business Review, Michael Watkins offers a new model: “assessing, reshaping and accelerating”.

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The art of selling your ideas to the boss

If you struggle to secure buy-in for your proposals, then it might be time to change your strategy. There are a number of “issue-selling” tactics that will give your ideas traction and secure the resources and attention they deserve.

Four things you should never do when using freelancers

By 2020, over 40% of our workforce will be freelancers – that’s according to a recent study by Intuit.

How can you get the best out of outsourcing? And what are the pitfalls to avoid? John Boitnott, writing for Inc.com, lists four things you should never do when using freelancers:

Want to be a great boss? Don’t do this

Become a great boss by thinking about the kind of boss you would hate to be, advises Avery Augustine, writing for Inc.com, via The Muse.

Being a great boss is a complicated business. It means finding the right balance between constructive criticism and praise, affection and respect, managing and delegating.

Your team holds the key to great leadership

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Leadership is not all about you, write Sucheta Nadkarni and Andreas Richter on the University of Cambridge Judge Business School blog. A strong team makes a great CEO and the most successful leaders look to others for solutions.

How HR can regain its relevance

It’s hard to see the point of HR when business is bad, Peter Cappelli writes for Harvard Business Review. We tend to appreciate what HR does only when business is booming, labour is scarce and retention rates are poor. During economic downturns, HR comes across as a nuisance and a nag.

Leadership lessons from the Navy SEALs

Under pressure you don’t rise to the occasion – you sink to the level of your training. That’s just one of the lessons business coaches can learn from the US Navy SEALs’ training ethic, says Michael Schrage, writing for Harvard Business Review.

Find the sinkholes in your strategy

No strategy is ever perfect, says Ken Favaro, writing for Strategy+Business. But it takes great leadership and confidence to recognise this.

The author poses two questions to help you work out just where your company’s weaknesses lie:

Why leaders make poor decisions

All leaders make poor decisions from time to time. Usually, they are relatively small and insignificant. However, writing for CEO.com, Jack Zenger and Joseph Folkman discuss the bad decisions leaders make that have a “titanic impact”.

Want to be a great leader? Ask for help

The most successful people in business rely on others to do their jobs better, insists Camille Preston, writing for the Fortune website.

Far from being a sign of weakness or a lack of competence, asking for help is something all great leaders do, says the author.

Stop blocking collaboration in your firm

Professionals who collaborate with their colleagues on cross-disciplinary work generate more revenue, inspire greater client loyalty and give their firms competitive edge, says Heidi Gardner in Harvard Business Review.

Five strategy beliefs that are just plain wrong

John Loker - Space is a Dangerous Country - Worlds Divide 2

We know a great deal about what strategy is, but very little about how to make strategy work, write Donald Sull, Rebecca Homkes and Charles Sull for Harvard Business Review.

Stop worrying about employee engagement

Are we in the midst of an employee engagement crisis? Or have consultants created a problem in order to sell business a solution, asks Nick Bron for Leadership Review.

2013 might have been a watershed year for the concept of “employee engagement”. Gallup published research indicating that only 13% of employees are “engaged” at work.

Ten essential lessons for entrepreneurs

For some entrepreneurs, things seem to fall into place on their rise to financial success, observes Jayson Demers, writing for Entrepreneur.com.

However, in spite of appearances, their success is not down to luck but rather an understanding of the importance of learning, adapting and growing, says the author.

15 quick fixes to improve productivity

Wish there were more hours in a day? Jayson De Mers, writing for Inc.com, reveals fifteen easy ways to boost productivity right now.

1) Go airplane mode. If you want to get things done, close your email and turn off your mobile phone, advises De Mers.

Don’t just lead your industry – dominate it

Competitive advantage is shifting, say Thomas N. Hubbard, Paul Leinwand and Cesare Mainardi, writing for Strategy+Business. The new industry leaders are leaner and more focused than their predecessors. They are the “supercompetitors”.

How to build the perfect board

The perfect board is diverse, well-trained and highly skilled, says Dr Roger Barker of the Institute of Directors.

Writing in Management Today, Barker describes how to build a great board in eight easy steps.

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