Communication

Negotiation: Use more head, less heart

November 1, 2006
Humans are not exactly rational creatures, and negotiating ranks among the least rational of our activities. Consider this explanation from researchers Keith Stanovich of the University of Toronto and Richard West of James Madison University:

Keep your mitts off their projects

April 1, 2006
People micromanage because they’re afraid. The better course: Notice when you start intervening in ways that make you wonder, “Is this my job?” or “Shouldn’t our staff do that?”

Get the troops on board

April 1, 2006
In a recent survey, nearly half the workers responding felt their organization had failed to provide clearly defined goals for their jobs. To help your employees get back into the game, Joanne G. Sujansky offers this advice to create a goal-oriented culture.

Dealing with ideas you just can’t use

July 1, 2005
The hard part of leading a creative team is deflecting ideas that are unrealistic, undeveloped or “not ready for prime time.” Take these critical steps.

A teacher’s 10 rules for keeping people happy

July 1, 2005
Managers have tremendous power to inspire and encourage, but some techniques actually undermine performance. Here’s Samuel Spitalli’s list of 10 no-nos.

When an employee loses control at work

July 1, 2005
Tempers flare all the time in the workplace, and managers need to know how to quickly calm down employees whose anger gets out of hand. Here’s a step-by-step strategy you can use:

If it’s not you who’s boring them …

June 1, 2005
Here’s a self-quiz to give you clues on how well you keep your people motivated. Put a number between 1 (for weak) and 4 (for strong) for each question to indicate your team’s strengths and weaknesses. What do you notice?

Grill your people

May 1, 2005
Make it a habit to grill your people about stories in the newspaper.

Why close-knit teams don’t always win

May 1, 2005
New findings suggest that close-knit teams are often less competitive than teams in which camaraderie is weak. Sociologists at the University of California and elsewhere see some compelling reasons why friendly teams finish last.

The secret of leadership: no secrets

April 1, 2005
Jack Stack doesn’t believe in keeping employees in the dark. Stack worked for International Harvester (IH), where he’d been put in charge of acquiring parts. He started going to management meetings and hearing company secrets. One of them: The Russians had hired IH to make tractors, and the company was way behind on the order. The managers told Stack to keep mum and focus on getting parts.