Thursday, 5 March 2009

Surviving and thriving in a recession

Some months ago I was interviewed by ITV West on how to survive and thrive in a credit crunch ( as we called it then ). I highlighted 3 key areas of focus
CASH – the lifeblood of any business. Managing its ebb and flow and spending it effectively is critical
CUSTOMER – where the money comes from. Knowing who they are, what they want and why they should come to you
CREATIVITY – adapting to the environment and changing customer’s needs. Involving your staff and customer’s in adapting your product and services. Trying to find what works and then doing it
Also many business leaders have been saying that a good company pre the recession will be able to steer a course through these difficult times and come out of it stronger. Amidst all the gloom there are tales of firms adapting and growing. So what makes the difference?
According to “Leading at a higher level “ by Ken Blanchard and published by FT Prentice Hall high performing companies
- Set their sights on the right target and vision
- Treat their customers right
- Treat their people right
- Develop the right kind of leadership
Ken shares his experience of working with High Performing Companies across 300 pages and 13 chapters. Full of simple models and concepts, littered with illustrations, it provides an excellent framework for thinking about your companies triple bottom line “ provider of choice, employer of choice ,investment of choice “
Two key models are of particular interest today.
SCORES – the six elements found in every high performing company
Shared information – so that everyone in the company can make the right decision
Compelling Vision – to energise and focus people
Ongoing Learning – changing and striving to get better
Relentless focus on Customers – an obsessive drive to keep customers
Energising systems – ensuring structures and processes are aligned to improving results
Shared power – teamwork, collaboration and engagement
PERFORM – the seven characteristics of high performing teams
Purpose and values – mutually agreed on goals
Empowerment – they have autonomy and decision making powers within clear boundaries
Relationships – people share their thoughts, opinions and ideas openly
Flexibility – adapting to changing conditions everyone is interdependent
Optimal Productivity – a commitment to significant bottom line results
Recognition – positive feedback reinforces appropriate behaviours
Morale – the team is confident and optimistic because all the above elements are in place!

If you want a book full of ideas that will help to energise you and your team then that take a look at this one and use whichever model works best for you!

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