Curing ONE of the Seven Deadly Diseases of Management, Performance Appraisals

Entrenched habits tend to persist, mostly invisible, until poets, reformers and provocateurs start writing, talking and asking questions. They challenge us to reexamine long-standing practices that no longer fit our current world and what’s on the horizon. This includes the persistent business artifact, performance appraisal, reviled by many, dropped entirely by a few, stuck on […]


A History of Performance Appraisals: Letting Go to Power New Culture

Performance ratings are part of ancient, really ancient, history. Are we ready yet to let go of individual performance appraisals (reviews, evaluations) to fully embrace achievement-oriented, team cultures? Or is the individualistic command and control culture of the Great Britain and American industrial age too much a part of the problem?  This SlideShare illustrates it: […]


Choices for High Performance Teams, Groups and Psuedo-Teams: Achievement Is How You Say It!

Looking for high performance in your organization?  Then take a good look at teams vs. groups. Kenneth P. De Meuse, of the Korn/Ferry Institute cites how work teams appear to be gaining in strength as jobs get bigger, organizational structures get more complex, and more and more companies become multi-national in scope (Naquin & Tynan, 2003). The VUCA […]


3 Success Factors for High Performance Teams, and What Gets In the Way

Leadership today has evolved greatly and includes high performance within teams.  Teamwork can also be the “secret sauce” that defines successful organizations.  Our systems for supporting high performance and leadership in teams and in entire organizations have not kept up with the times. Some of our most persistent management practices date from the industrial age, including […]


Top 5 Apple BlockBusters and Reasons the iPad Ruled the Tablets in 2013

If there’s one thing that Apple has been getting right, it is their ability to create beautiful, easy-to-use blockbusters. To build a great business, it’s all about creating a great product that people love for the positive impact on their lives.   ______________ The 2013 statistics on the iPad, and my own …blew me away. […]


Beyond Resilience: Givers, Takers, Matchers and Anti-Fragile Systems

“Our focus on removing or minimizing randomness has actually had the perverse effect of increasing fragility.”   How can we work through this  paradox in organizations?  Assistant Professor Adam Grant’s recent works provides insights. As a follow-on exploring the concept of anti-fragile systems that I blogged about earlier, consider the power of Dr. Grant’s recent work on Givers, […]


Creator, Challenger, Coach through Change: Getting out of the Drama

Being creative can be tough when bad news abounds.  Yet taking the creative, challenging coach role through turbulence is a hero’s journey that matters greatly as we recover and build anew. What does it mean to be a Trusted Change Advisor in today’s turbulent times? My colleague, Liz Guthridge, wrote a helpful post about the […]


Union / Management collaboration: What Creates Healthy, Fit Organizations Today?

What makes for a healthy, “anti-fragile” (adaptable, responsive) organization today?   These slides from my recent presentation to the Michigan Management Labor Association’s (MMLA) presentation on Wellness –A Healthy Engagement: Organizational and Personal Fitness provide insights on tools to help.  Wellness –A Healthy Engagement: Organizational and Personal Fitness from Deb Nystrom “The best way to predict […]


Beyond Resilience: Black Swans, Anti-Fragility and Change

Random, extreme events:  What to do in a world we don’t understand.  Is it possible to develop characteristics to emulate strengths in nature in becoming anti-fragile as described by former wall street trader, now academic, Nassim Nicholas Taleb?  Since I wrote this post, I also followed it up with a SlideShare and presentation on Anti-Fragile […]


International Coaching Week is Coming, May 20-26

Join me and my Coach Café Ann Arbor colleagues to learn about how coaching can support your success through one of our coaching demonstrations or workshops during International Coaching Week, May 20-26, 2013. Of all clients who have engaged a coach, 99% report satisfaction with the coaching experience, 70% report improved work performance, 80% report […]