The pursuit of
• Severe recession / survival thinking
• Business is not fun any more
• The Internet is creating and destroying opportunities
• The electronic culture is invading business culture
• Short attention spans and cycles
• Relentless atomization and acceleration
• Depersonalized: customer “moat”
• Depersonalized: management by email
• Executives in quandary
• “Fad fatigue” – death of “excellence”
The Current Business Environment
IBM Global CEO Study, 2010
• 1500+ CEOs, 60 countries, 33 industries
• CEOs concerned about massive, rapid change
• Global economic shifts
• Disruptive impacts of technology
• 80% expect it to get worse
• > 50% say their organizations not prepared to cope
• Biggest needs they identified:
“closeness to customers”
Leadership and Organizational Performance
“Organizational performance cannot
be divorced from executive leadership.
The executives must learn, grow, and
co-develop with the organization.”
- Dr. Karl Albrecht
Service America: Doing Business
in the New Economy
The Power of Minds at Work:
Organizational Intelligence in Action
Social Intelligence: the New Science of Success
Practical Intelligence: the Art & Science of
Are Executives Equipped for the Challenges?
Prof. Warren Bennis, USC
“We found that adaptive capacity was
the single most important attribute for
success, whatever the field.”
“We discovered that all of the leaders
had undergone a crucible, a
transformative experience that had
prepared them to lead.”
Adaptive Capacity = Intelligence
“… a leader’s life is the summation of the leader’s judgment calls.
Making judgment calls, we concluded, is the primary job of a leader,
the DNA of leadership. With good judgment, little else matters.
Without it, nothing else matters.”
From Still Surprised: a Memoir of a Life in Leadership
Re-thinking Organizational Performance
the extent to which an organization
achieves a set of pre-defined targets
that are unique to its mission. These
targets will include both objective
(numerical) and subjective (judgmental)
key dimensions of an organization’s
functioning that are critical to its
capacity to perform. Also called
domains of excellence (DOE).
Domains of Excellence
Domains of Excellence are key performance drivers - dimensions of
organizational capacity that enable the enterprise to succeed. They are the
universal “management dashboard.”
1. Strategic Focus
2. Customer Value
3. Leadership & Team Performance
4. Culture, Values, & Ethics
5. Process Excellence
6. Talent Management
7. Knowledge Management
Seven Domains of Excellence:
“Take care of the means,
and the end will take care
of itself.” - Gandhi
Performance: Means and Ends
DOE 1: Strategic Focus
• An ongoing “strategic conversation”
• Continuous environmental scanning
• Clear purpose: the “story”
• Clear driving values, priorities
• Linked to financial / economic results
DOE 2: Customer Value
• Key cultural & operational focus
• Continuing research & feedback
• Value proposition clearly understood
• Synergy between “tech” & “touch”
• Masterful delivery
DOE 3: Leadership & Team Performance
• High standards for leader-managers
• Executives who lead and model
• Effective leader selection
• Effective leader training / dev.
• Regular assessment / feedback
DOE 4: Culture, Values, & Ethics
• A strong sense of community
• Executives who model core values
• High quality of work life (QWL)
• Morale, esprit de corps, shared fate
• Social / ecological responsibility
DOE 5: Process Excellence
• Appropriate organization structure
• Processes are aligned w/ mission
• Processes are friendly to customers
• Processes empower performance
• Processes are always improving
DOE 6: Talent Management
• A culture w/ attracts talented people
• Competitive compensation
• Management of “fit” and fitness
• Developmental opportunities
• Systems w/ support career success
DOE 7: Knowledge Management
• A culture w/ values knowledge
• A culture of collaboration & creativity
• Effective use of IT capability
• Infrastructure for social networking
• Development of thought leaders
We Need a New View of the
BusinessThe “Wall Street” Model
A business is a living enterprise.
It’s more than the sum of its parts.
There are multiple bottom lines (3 P’s).
Success is multi-dimensional.
Customers are solution seekers.
Employees are agents / performers.
Org’n is a complex, adaptive system.
It has multiple stakeholders.
Performance is caused by synergy.
The Emerging Model
A business is just a collection of assets.
It can be bought, sold, subdivided.
There’s one “real” bottom line.
Success is defined financially.
Customers are sources of revenue.
Employees are interchangeable “resources.”
Org’n is an apparatus; a set of processes.
It’s “owned” by management.
Performance is caused by management.
We Need a New View of Customers
“Wall Street” Model
Customers as unique, solution seekers
Can be “appreciating assets”
We focus on delivering value
Our systems reflect their worlds
Customers as standard economic units
Mostly disposable / interchangeable
We push products / services to them
They adapt to our “system”
We Need a New View of Employees
Interchangeable Work Units
“Wall Street” Model Emerging Model
We Need a New View of the Executive
Executive as “Leader of the Band”
Leadership as unique and contextual
Leader as learner: growing to meet the challenge
Leader as serial problem solver
The Effective Executive
Occupies a pre-defined role
Captive of the organization
Presides / manages
Sorts problems into “bins”
Deploys his / her unique intelligences
“Owns” the organization
Has a “theory” / “story”
Engages, inspires, and energizes others
Bland Leader? Or Band Leader?
The Leader is the “Main Brain”
The “thinking style” (preferred information processing pattern)
of the leader shapes everything he or she thinks, says, and does.
The leader’s thinking style
(a.k.a. cognitive style) also influences
the collective thinking processes
of everyone in the organization
under his or her leadership.
Thinking styles have been mostly
ignored in leadership models.
The Polyintelligent Leader
“Multiple Intelligence” Concept:
• Robert Sternberg (Yale): the “IQ” concept is obsolete
• Howard Gardner (Harvard): 7 – 8 “intelligences”
Adapted Model: Karl Albrecht (in his book Social Intelligence)
A = Abstract Intelligence
S = Social Intelligence
P = Practical Intelligence
E = Emotional Intelligence
A = Aesthetic Intelligence
K = Kinesthetic Intelligence
The “Triune” Intelligence model for business
What are the Steps
in an Organizational Performance Initiative?
1. Evaluation / Assessment: a rigorous, evidence-based process
of determining what aspects of the organization deserve to be
improved; owned and led by management; may be supported by
specialized experts or external practitioners.
2. Planning: a carefully considered process of defining the
outcomes desired, deciding what methods and resources to
employ, and assigning responsibilities for project leadership (e.g.
project team or task force).
3. Implementation: a disciplined process of executing the
development plan, with support, participation, and guidance by the
appropriate levels of management.
4. Continuity: evaluating the success of the project; celebrating
success; formalizing the new way of doing things.
The “E. P. I. C.” Cycle
What are the Critical Success Factors
for an Organizational Performance Initiative?
1. Management Ownership
2. Employee Engagement
3. Solutions Unique to the Enterprise
4. Access to Appropriate Expertise
5. Disciplined Analysis & Planning
6. Creative Solutions & Best Practices
7. Flexible Management of the Process
Seven Critical Success Factors:
Do We Need Outside Consultants?
Consultants can sometimes:
• Educate you about concepts / models
• Advise & guide your efforts
• Provide specialized expertise / tools
• Carry out specific outsourced tasks
Consultants vary in their focus:
• Generalists – assessment / strategy
• Domain specialists – methodology
• Subject matter experts
For More Information…