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  • Category Archives: MSSBTI

    From Around the Web: Office Politics and Generational Gaps

    Like it or not, most people have inherent biases, certain opinions or judgments which have developed over time, which affect relationships within the workplace. Like complacency, strong opinions and biases can plague friendly business relationships and great customer service. Office politics can become a true stumbling block for project communications and organizational effectiveness. A lack of organizational transparency discourages innovation and achievement. From this behavior, collaboration and team dynamics can be strained creating a negative corporate culture, ultimately affecting your clients. Getting buy-in from leadership to be transparent within the organization, setting a standard, and uprooting negative habits when they occur can change the corporate culture for the better. Charles Zulanas, Senior Consultant for MSS Business Transformation Advisory, shares many articles from around the web that offer advice on how to overcome biases in the workplace that could be beneficial for overcoming office politics as well as generational gaps.

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    Generals vs Conductors in the Evolution of Leadership

    David Lee, Executive Director of the MSS Business Transformation Institute, uses Mozart in the Jungle to explain the study in the evolution of the leaders from the previous conductor dealing with a new reality to the new conductor trying to reach his potential as well as the potential of the organization he is leading. Looking at what it takes to be a leader in today’s exponentially changing environment, leaders must also look at the evolution of leadership. Lee covers a brief history of organizational development and the evolution of leadership theory, and how it relates to being a conductor of a symphony. Lee uses studies about command and control environments and how they affect productivity short-term and long-term. Ultimately, leaders account for at least 70% of variance in employee engagement scores. Lee highlights his personal stories of working with two different leaders and analyzes who would be a better fit for business in today’s complex world.

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    A New Humanism

    Purpose Driven Strategy has become a prime topic of management in the last decade due in no small part to the popular books like Start with Why by Simon Sinek; Firms of Endearment by Raj Sisodia; Leading with Purpose by Mark Koehler; Purpose: The Starting Point of Great Companies, by Nikos Mourkogiannis; and the Progress Principle by Teresa M. Amabile & Steven J. Kramer. Executive seminars are held about it, business models are built on it, and consulting companies have established whole practice lines dedicated to it. This concept of Purpose Driven Strategy is a fundamental change to the approach expressed by Milton Friedman when he said: “There is one and only one social responsibility of business-to use its resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game.” In a sense, it is a new type of Humanism where organizations don’t just work for their shareholders but for the betterment of all the stakeholders and the community at large. David Lee, Executive Director of the MSS Business Transformation Institute, explains how businesses are leading with purpose rather than profits and are becoming highly successful. This article shows businesses how to lead with purpose.

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    From Around the Web: Supply Chain Management

    Supply chain management transformed while you were sleeping. Are you prepared? Charles Zulanas, Senior Consultant for MSS Business Transformation Advisory, shows some of the latest trends in supply chain management. Supply chain management is critical to every business at some level. This supply chain world amasses billions of goods and materials each day for sale to and purchase by the consumer. To some executives it may seem unnecessary to point out the importance of such an influential practice in business, but this article might be a wakeup call to some of you; you may be missing some freight.  Every nine days, another S&P 500 company is taken off of the index because the previous blue chip company, companies that for 60+ years had dominated their market, lost their competitive edge due to Complacency. Zulanas uses Amazon, Apple and Walmart as case studies in successful supply chain processes.

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    Taking the Leap from KPI’s to Balanced Scorecard

    One of the most influential methods a company can utilize to transform its organization is the Balanced Scorecard. According to Gartner, 50% of enterprise-level companies in the US have adopted this method and it was selected by Harvard Business Review editors as one of the most influential business ideas of the last 75 years. Yet, most mid-market companies are still working with KPI’s. It is time to make the leap.

    The Balanced Scorecard is a management system that enables an organization to translate their vision and strategy into action. It transforms the academic exercise of strategic planning into a fully realized system. This article speaks about the Balanced Scorecard and its uses for chief executives to transform their organizations and its different tenets of Customer Understanding, Employee Learning and Growth, Business Processes Development, and Financial Data Expansion along with recommendations on implementation.

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    How Asking One Question Can “Delight” Your Customer

    Is it good enough to simply meet the needs of your customers, or do you want to find exciting ways to elevate the value you bring to the table?

    Martin Bonadio, Management Consultant, explains the “Voice of the Customer” (VoC), a structured communication process that begins with non-leading, clarifying and probing questions, and progresses with active listening to acquire a comprehensive gathering of information directly from the customer. Bonadio helps businesses to see what the reason behind the customer’s needs so they can develop a better solution for their customers to revolutionize the industry they support. Bonadio walks each reader, step by step, through the process of how to elevate your business operates.

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    Is Decision Fatigue Sucking the Life from Your Employees?

    In his second article focusing on decision fatigue, Charles Zulanas, Senior Consultant for MSS Business Transformation Advisory, shares how decision fatigue, as a physical state, may be negatively impacting your business.

    In an increasingly commoditized world, employees have more options than they can handle before they even get to work, let alone at work. Many people find themselves in a state of decision fatigue or paralysis, resulting in poor decisions in the workplace that could threaten a business’s success and profitability. This mental fatigue is compounded because a majority of people (employees or not) in the United States are sleep deprived. According to the Center for Disease Control, insufficient sleep is a public health problem because individuals lacking sufficient sleep are likely to commit occupational errors and also more likely to suffer from chronic diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, depression, and obesity, as well as from cancer, increased mortality, and reduced quality of life and productivity.

    How can companies lead transformation with so many sleep-deprived and decision fatigued employees? Make their decisions “no-brainers.”

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    Embracing Business Transformation through Digital Technology Should be a ‘No-Brainer’

    Charles Zulanas, Senior Consultant of MSS Business Transformation Advisory, in this final installment of his 3-part series on decision fatigue, shows how organizations can increase efficiency and maximize profitability by embracing business transformation through digital technology.

    Technology does not eliminate the need for people to navigate their internal systems, but instead requires fewer technical and process-oriented roles which can be replaced with big-picture, strategic employees. Time-consuming and laborious processes can often be streamlined by technology and, as stated in previous articles, companies want to make processes as efficient as possible.

    3-D and augmented reality companies have created the best way to try furniture without going through the process of bringing it home then realizing it doesn’t fit the space or match the decor. This does not eliminate the need for sales people, but rather adapts their role into the bigger picture of customer-centric sales. Charles instructs regarding the best ways to gain profits and win customers through making “no-brainer” investments in technology.

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    From Around the Web: Automation and the Technological Advances of Yesterday

    Charles Zulanas, Senior Consultant for MSS Business Transformation Advisory, writes about practical technological advances and automation in business.

    Many people protest the use of robots and automation. With the increase in technological advancements, employees fear they will no longer have stable job security. At present, activities that are process-oriented can be automated using the latest technology to save time, eliminate defects and create a standardized result and quality. Advanced systems often can be made more efficient through automation as well. During the standard business day, systems can automatically churn out the latest data that is relevant to business needs and communicate it in terms of the bottom line. Charles explains the increased efficiencies in business marketing, manufacturing, transportation and office management as a result of automation.

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    The Evolution of Digital Transformation and the CIO

    Ralph Stauffer, Management Consultant for MSS Business Transformation Advisory, explains the evolution of digital technology throughout the world. The Digital Age is likened to biological evolution as a result of millions of small innovative changes that take place before the next technological era occurs.

    Many innovations, discoveries, and failures were made over the last few decades culminating in the digital age. Stauffer identifies some innovations of the digital age that include blockchain, drones, Internet of Things (IoT), robots, 3D printing, virtual reality, augmented reality, and artificial intelligence. The CIO has to evolve as well, but in a way that responds rapidly to the new environment, determining the correct strategy to pursue and when to pursue it, even if uncertain of the requirements. Stauffer identifies different strategies CIOs can take to attack the digital age with success in their digital transformation efforts.

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