Entries in "planning"

June 27, 2007

an alternative to the SMART goal framework

I wrote up a post at my new blog, Work-Life Chronicles, about the alternative to the SMART goal framework that I have developed and used in the last year of teaching MGMT 250 and 251. I call it START NOW, which stands for:

Support
Temerity
Awareness
Reflection
Trying Again
Notes
Options
Wise Action


To read more about each of the labels in the START NOW framework, and some funny stories about my adventures learning to ride my Vespa, click through to read "a different take on setting and achieving goals".

Please let me know what you think of the new blog, too! I'd welcome you to add it to your blogroll, or subscribe to the RSS feed, if you find the first few posts interesting.

December 28, 2006

choices made, and results to follow

There's an article in Crain's Cleveland Business by Shannon Mortland, from 12/19/06, drawing attention to the latest report from Voices and Choices. Here's part of what Mortland wrote:

"Local government officials are going to have to put away their personal agendas long enough to work together toward improving Northeast Ohio’s future. ... The “Report on the Public’s Priorities for Northeast Ohio’s Future” also noted that post-secondary education must be more affordable, accessible and achievable; quality education and training for low-income residents and minorities must be made more available; and businesses and local entrepreneurs will need increased public and private investment and support."

The report that Mortland summarizes is worth reading to appreciate the magnitude of the challenges that face this region. I also recommend downloading the earlier released report on citizen interviews, which includes extensive quotes from Northeast Ohio residents. It's worth reading, and worth acting upon.

How will we help move these choices from ideas to action? How will we measure the results of those actions?

April 17, 2006

can you ever trust a consultant?

I came across a great excerpt from a speech by Bob Sutton recently, at the AlwaysOn Network: it's called "Use Common Sense, Not Crystal Balls". In it Professor Sutton (a U of M alum like me) provides four questions for managers to ask themselves when thinking about whether to take the advice offered by consultants. First, is the practice that is being advised time-tested? Second, who benefits? Third, what are the risks? And fourth, what evidence is there that this practice is connected with effectiveness?

I would argue that a consultant who can engage in an honest dialogue with a manager about these questions is a consultant who can be trusted. The rest --

Continue reading "can you ever trust a consultant?"

December 17, 2005

Rebuilding New Orleans with a wifi network

I had missed this post by Youngjin Yoo about the plan to blanket New Orleans in wifi, which I think is a wonderful way to go about rebuilding downtown in a new and better way. As Professor Yoo writes, however, there are questions about how it will be implemented:

"This is an interesting idea, but leaves several questions."

"1. Does New Orleans have full power throughout the city? Do they have other basic infrastructure in place? Or is free WiFi being considered a part of basic infrastructure now?"

[snip]

"3. It is one thing to have free WiFi throughout the city, but it is another to have plans how to use them. Even if you build them, they may not come, or will they?"

Click through the first link above to read the full original post by my colleague.

November 29, 2005

tidbits for students

Lisa Haneberg, who blogs about the craft of management, is currently offering an e-book for free on New Year's Resolutions for Leaders which may be helpful to students as they are SMARTening their learning goals and filling in their action plans for achieving them. She offers good tips for how to avoid turning the goalsetting process into an exercise in stargazing, and some practical suggestions for the kinds of actions that can keep you moving toward a goal.

Terrence Seamon, a workplace learning and performance consultant, offers his vision of a better alternative to tying annual performance appraisals to a too-small pot of merit pay: spot cash awards, a raffle for award winners, and annual development planning that is less focused on the past and more focused on continuous improvement and skill development. He offers an important reminder that performance appraisal should always end with a conversation about how to convert the numbers to meaning and to constructive action in the future.

Oh, and if you're wondering why we asked you to blog this semester, and my post from back in August doesn't convince you that the assignment is worthwhile, then perhaps the fact that blogging is the topic of an article in Harvard Business School's Working Knowledge newsletter will convince you that learning to compose blog entries and connect with other bloggers is becoming an increasingly valuable skill in the workplace!