People or Results?

At a meeting I heard a COO of a strong Agribusiness saying: “I don’t farm with fruit. I farm with People. They are my most important focus and concern.” The others around the table nodded their heads, recognising the noble truth in the statement. And yet we all deep down sensed that it is a bit reactionary, and part of a far more complex matter. Continue reading People or Results?

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Hats off to Women!

Barack Obama is quoted to have said “Empowering women is not just the right thing to do – it is the smart thing to do”.

I was asked to be a speaker at an all-women seminar later this month. It is for business women in leadership positions. Sadly, due to gender inequality, women still find it challenging to be acknowledged and progress in the business world. They are facing so many biases, illogical perceptions and unfair practices. For ages women submitted to these injustices, but the time has come where not only women, but also a lot of men are taking a stand to change this. This kind of discrimination is not only unfair, but also foolishness – crippling contribution, talent, creativity, team work and collaboration we so desperately need to build effective and happy organisations and a better world. Continue reading Hats off to Women!

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Simplicity beyond Complexity

I believe one of the most important survival skills right now is the ability to do complexity management. But let me start with a story.

In the beginning of the year our pool turned green… then greener… and eventually it was super-ugly-green. We did everything we normally did: tested it, gave it chlorine and lots of other chemicals, took water samples to the “experts” at the pool shop. Added more chemicals and ended up spending thousands of rands. All the old solutions did not work. Apparently we had a new kind of problem. A complex one. We even, after “expert advice”, emptied the pool to 60% of its volume, refilled it… still green. Then we got a pool fundi out. He assessed the water-system, decided on a simple action plan, and within a few hours it started to clear. Within a day the pool was beautiful. The lessons? Continue reading Simplicity beyond Complexity

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