People Management

The battle-tested thrive at Amazon

April 17, 2013

The armed forces rely on logistics, and so does Amazon. Over time, it dawned on the online retailer that the people so capably running its 34 warehouses have a military “bias for action” as well as hands-on experience in moving stuff around.

Tell stories to forge tight bonds

April 12, 2013
As a leader you can tell people what to do. But barking orders rarely endears you to your team. A better way to instruct and inspire staffers is to share personal anecdotes.

Learn to empower others

April 3, 2013
Top executives often take up hobbies such as golf and sailing. But Mark Hellerstein is probably the only CEO who is also a professional ventriloquist. Hellerstein served as chief executive of St. Mary Land & Exploration Co. from 1995 to 2007. During that time, the oil and gas firm—now known as SM Energy Co.—grew from an $80 million private company to a $2.5 billion public company.

Ask smart questions to learn more

March 14, 2013
Many leaders pride themselves on their ability to listen. But to listen well, you must do more than concentrate on what you hear: You need to ask smart questions. Follow these steps to ex­­tract more information through probing.

Do you praise poor performers too much?

March 7, 2013
If you dread administering performance reviews, you may sugarcoat your appraisals by telling employees they’re doing “great” when they need to improve. Dishing out undeserved praise can backfire. By giving honest, thorough appraisals, you can avoid these traps.

Do you influence?

March 4, 2013
Run down this list to see if your behavior aligns with the “high influence style” of leadership.

Playbook of a basketball king

January 31, 2013
You don’t win, as a coach, more men’s college basketball games than any other without being a phenomenal leader. Duke University’s Mike Krzyzewski is a leader who happens to coach basketball. He knows that his efforts and successes are about others, not about himself …

Sample Policy: Peformance Reviews

January 16, 2013
The following sample policies were excerpted from The Book of Company Policies, published by Business Management Daily. ©2013. Edit for your organization’s purposes.

Cut to the bottom line: 3 tips

December 4, 2012
To engage in effective coaching, you need to uncover the core issue to address. Otherwise, you’ll advise em­­ployees on extraneous matters while the most pressing issue gets ignored.

Playing follow the leader

November 28, 2012
While Dick Cross was training to become a naval officer 30 years ago, he studied the “bearing” of an officer. But times have changed. Authority today, Cross says, is not granted officially but by those who agree to follow their leader.