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Ian Pratt's Leadership Blog

Ian Pratt

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Jul 18, 2019

This category of waste will make you cringe

On a recent family camping trip, we drove past the local dump, in Adelaide, we are building a waste mountain a huge pile of waste, it is very visible.

Visible waste is easy to see and easy to build momentum to address. Invisible waste is harder to deal with.

One form of invisible waste is “leader initiated waste”. Leaders create this waste through their actions.

One example is requesting a weekly report on the status of a project or business activity and then being fussy with the wording and structure of the report.

Do you have any other examples of leader initiate waste?

Apr 30, 2018

Designing an Organisation

How many direct reports should each manager have?

Here are a few guiding principles

For teams where all team members do similar work

- If the team leader is responsible for technical skills coaching, 8-12 direct reports

- If the team leader is not responsible for technical skills coaching, 18-22 direct reports

And avoid One on One reporting relationships

For managers’ 8 – 12 direct reports, less if the manager is required to have technical input into each area of operations.

It is also important to ensure each layer of management is managing a different timeframe

- Team leaders – this week to this month

- Manager – this month to this year

- Senior manager this year to 5 years

If two layers of manager are managing in the same timeframe, you will see an increase in politics, dysfunction and dissatisfaction.

Apr 23, 2018

Quick tip on how to change your culture

Starting today, you can drive a change

Your culture is the sum of average behaviours in your business, or

Culture = Sum(Average Behaviour)

To change your culture all you need to do is,

a) Identify one behaviour you want to stopb) Get your people together and ask them for input on how to stop this one behaviourc) Agree on expectationsd) Enforce expectations

You have now changed one behaviour, and with it, your team’s average behaviours have changed.

Referring to our formulae, Culture = Sum(Average Behaviour)

If the average behaviour has changed, then so has your culture

Using this approach, you can rapidly transform your team's culture, one behaviour at a time.

Apr 16, 2018

What comes first Behaviour or Beliefs?

Creating lasting change dictates that your people must believe in the change.

But, how do beliefs form?

Beliefs form after you have adopted the new behaviour and lived it.

When creating a change you only need your people to be willing to give it a go, as their beliefs will change after they experience the change.

If your people do not believe in the change, they are not resisting the change, they just need to experience the change to alter their beliefs.

Apr 09, 2018

Managing Non Performance Using Change Methodology

All too often managers make excuses for their employee’s non-performance.

The first rule of managing non-performance is that there are no excuses, just mitigating factors.

To diagnose non-performance you can borrow from change methodology, ADKAR.

Does the employee

1. Have an Awareness of performance expectations and how performance can be achieved?

2. Do they have the Desire to achieve expected levels of performance?

3. Do they have the Knowledge required to achieve results?

4. Do they have the Ability to achieve results?

5. Are there Reinforcement mechanisms in place to support the achievement of expectations such as regular feedback?

Once you know where the problem resides, corrective action can be tailored to resolve the performance issue.

Apr 03, 2018

Procrastinating in a decisive way

How your decision making processes maybe thinly disguised procrastination.

When your employee asks you to make a decision how do you respond?- Ask for further information- Request the slide pack to be updated, or- Ask for more information to be added to the report- Refer the decision to a committee- Suggest it be presented again next month- Ask for broader consultation

In some cases, these techniques are legitimate, however these are also the more common decision delay techniques that people use.

What decision delay techniques do you observe?

Mar 13, 2018

What motivates consultants?

What do your words say about your values?

The other day ay a networking event a consultant told me that he uses strategic planning software and can interview a few people, ask a few questions and put a workshop at the front and back end then he can charge his clients $50K

I was puzzled where was the client value statement?

What message was he conveying to me?

Imagine the difference if he had said, I help my clients find a path, their direction and I am available to assist them to implement and measure benefits if required.

Think about what is most important to you and tell your story around it.

Mar 12, 2018

Own your culture, do not abdicate your culture to anyone

In the absence of leadership, someone will assume leadership, it might be the right person it might be the wrong person

Mar 09, 2018

what makes a good leader

What makes a good leader? Leading a high performance team is within your reach, you only need to complete a few simple tasks each day. The challenge is not learning these skills it is prioritising them in a time poor environment.

Continue reading "what makes a good leader"

Mar 08, 2018

Telling someone that they are smart is a big mistake

People love praise, it addictive.

Receiving praise releases dopamine in the mind, it’s a feel good chemicalWe actively repeat behaviours that get praised to increase the chance of more praise and more dopamine

If you tell someone they are smart, they will get the same feel goodThe issue is in repeating the behaviour

Will they seek greater challenges where they may fail or play safe to pursue more praise?

Most will play safe

To stretch your employees praise them for tenacity, problem solving methods, engaging others, taking on the challenge



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