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Huffduffed (112)

  1. The One Third-Planning Rule - Part 1 | Manager Tools

    This guidance explains the One-Third Planning Rule: when assessing and assigning work to your team, never take more than 1/3 of the available time to do so.

    Mark's brother once sent him a joke memo, about all the ways managers DON'T motivate their teams. One of the items was, "always wait until 5 o'clock to give me important stuff to do - I like surprises right before I go home." "In all humor, truth," unfortunately. Lots of bosses are inconsiderate when thinking about how much time they need to think about something versus how much time their directs need to actually DO something.

    Your team wants to know NOW when you get a requirement or job or project or new tasking that they're going to be involved in. They do NOT want you to wait one second longer than you have to. Surely not until they're about to go home!

    But wait. You want some time to think things through, right? You don't want to assign something and discover an hour's worth of your thought would have saved 50 of their man-hours. So, it makes sense to spend time to get things right, think through the issues, risks, etc.

    Who's right?

    Both are … and the way to manage your responsibility is to follow the One-Third Planning Rule.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  2. Measuring Feedback Chapter 1 - Part 1 | Manager Tools

    This cast concludes our guidance on how to measure the amount of feedback you're delivering to your directs.

    We get asked all the time how much feedback is enough. We see this as very similar to the question, how many meetings should I have? Hopefully we all know there's no right answer to that, other than, as many as you need. Sometimes a lot, sometimes not so much.

    With feedback, the answer for 90% of managers 90% of the time isn't whether what you're giving is enough…the answer is, there's no way you're giving enough. ;-)

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  3. Skip Levels (Part 1) | Manager Tools

    Our guidance about a rarely used but powerful Manager Tool, The Skip Level.

    If you've ever wondered what was going on at senior levels, and thought that if "they" would keep you informed, things would be a whole lot better, the Skip Level is YOUR way of reducing those problems in your part of your organization.

    The fact is, it's hard to communicate even directly to your team.

    Many of us learned that when we "discover" our teams through One on Ones.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  4. Peer One on Ones - Part 1 | Manager Tools

    This guidance recommends why and how to meet weekly, or regularly, with your peer managers.

    The higher you go up in your organization, the more you realize that youre actually less and less able to get things done all by yourself. CEOs say they feel like theyre running in oatmeal they cant make things happen as directly as they used to. When youre the VP of Sales, you cant MAKE that new product you just KNOW your customers will buy like crazy. If youre the Chief of Manufacturing, even a perfectly made product has to be sold by someone else.

    Simply put: relationships grow in importance over the course of ones career. And that means an effective manager, a Manager Tools Manager, will spend time developing and maintaining important internal relationships. There are a lot of ways to do this, but the easiest is to use the Manager Tools Peer One on One Model.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  5. Timely Meetings - Part 1 | Manager Tools

    This cast describes how to run timely meetings.

    Mark was reminded of the importance of timely meetings when he was reading the recent interview with a SVP of Elle Group, in the New York Times. Among other inane and unprofessional, offensive things, the executive averred that she regularly shows up late to meetings to miss all the chit chat. (She also suggested that the chitchat was gender-based, but that's part of the inanity.) Okay, we are also routinely reminded about the importance of timely meetings by all the meetings we go to that start late, too.

    In most organizations, culturally, the meeting of deadlines is treated with the same respect as timeliness in meetings. If your culture supports meeting lateness, we suspect that it also tolerates missed deadlines.

    Do you want to know how sprinter trainers get sprinters to run faster? Believe it or not, to get a sprinter's legs to go faster, you just make his or her arms go faster.

    If you want to start meeting more deadlines, start running your meetings on time. Here's how.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  6. Team Formation - How Big? | Manager Tools

    This cast describes how big to size a team when forming it.

    We get asked all the time, what's the ideal size for a team to be?

    The simple answer is that there's no ideal size - it depends on a lot of factors.

    But, we realize that when we get asked, someone's probably got to form a team to accomplish something, and so our answer, though right, isn't initially helpful.

    The question probably ought to be, "how big should I make this team I'm forming…"

    If you've got to form a team, and are wondering how to do it, this cast starts our answer by giving guidance about how big it should be.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

  7. Time (Priority) Management - Part 1 (Hall Of Fame Guidance) | Manager Tools

    Time management is a fallacy, we like to say.

    Time doesn't need you to "manage" it - it's been getting along just fine without you for billions of years.

    We can't manage time.

    But what we CAN manage is what we do with that time.

    And yet, the overwhelming evidence is that managers do NOT "manage what they do with that time."

    There's a shocking CHASM between our behavior in this area and our knowledge of what to do.

    In fact, Mark recently blogged on how busy everyone says they are, which irritates him.

    He looks at their calendars, and there's no EVIDENCE that they're busy.

    There are vast swaths of unscheduled time!

    Peter Drucker, in the first prescriptive chapter of his seminal work, the Effective Executive, says it best (of course): "The output limits of any process are set by the scarcest resource.

    In the process we call "accomplishment", this is time … Of the other major resources, money is actually quite plentiful … People … one can hire.

    But one cannot rent, hire, buy or otherwise obtain more time."

    So, the question is, how can managers start to become more efficient about using the time that each of us has at our disposal?

    In fact, that's a great way to state it:

    STOP disposing of your time!

    It's not only your most precious resource, it's also your most perishable!

    This cast will get you started doing just that.

    —Huffduffed by chriskaschner

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