"In managing a company, you of course need to be rational... but I'm gradually learning to be less rational and more emotional. Motivating people and generating a sense of spirit inside a company are essential parts of the CEO's role. We need to appeal to our employees' emotions to help create an environment where they can innovate."
Pablo Isla, Inditex CEO, HBR November Issue
Bernie Ecclestone, the billionaire who controls Formula 1 is a man who knows about winning. Bernie, who is so often good for quotes, once said:
Show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser.
Time and again winners talk about the 'winning whatever it takes' mindset, but I have already argued many times on this blog about how strong ethical values are so important for those who wish to achieve the greatest success. Can the two be reconciled? Can you be a winner without compromising your core values?
Management stuff, it can seem nice in principle but in a busy world, do you really need to do it, after all, subordinates have to do what you tell them right? Wells Fargo, one of the largest banks in America has found out the hard way the downside to this approach. The results of poor management have been devastating: employees have lost their jobs, the stock price has plummeted, the CEO retired early and in shame, regulators have fined the bank $185m for misconduct and the company is being sued by ex-employees for $2,5bn. Some customers meanwhile are now refusing to do business with the bank. And it all could have been so easily avoided.
Danny Meyer's book Setting the Table is in my view a must read for anyone in the restaurant world. He has a clear philosophy behind what he does and a string of successful restaurants across multiple styles that is a testimony to that philosophy. What I also like about the book is that he discusses the mistakes he made and is always asking himself how he can learn from that experience. Most great managers talk of learning more from their mistakes than from their successes but few speak of real examples of this learning process, however, this one from Danny Meyer is stand out in my view...
To a class of trainee accountants, nothing quite generates an adolescent giggle like your introduction to double-entry. but behind the mirth, double-entry bookkeeping is a somewhat beautiful thing. Double-entry reflects that every transaction in a business generates not one accounting outcome but two.
For Formula 1 fans who support Lewis Hamilton, Sunday's Malaysian GP was a big disappointment, so one can only imagine how Lewis himself felt after his engine went up in smoke and possibly his championship hopes also. This was of course big news and the press hung on his every word but such a huge setback allowed us a valuable insight into the mind of a champion. While he no doubt has been trained by the best PR agents in the business, I'd like to think that what he says publicly, is indeed what he thinks privately, not least because he is a driver who is known to wear his heart on his sleeve. Let's jump in.
It is said that when Julius Caesar was asked why he divorced his wife Pompeia, it was because she was suspected of some wrong doing and he could not associate with her anymore. And so the phrase 'Caesar's wife must be above suspicion' entered the public domain. It is worth noting here that it is not recorded whether Caesar's wife actually did anything wrong, she was merely suspected of it, and that itself is sufficient. And so we come to Big Sam Allardyce, England football manager for all of 67 days, for the England football manager, like Caesar's wife, must be above suspicion.
Financial statements convey the financial health of your company to interested parties who might be investors, customers, creditors or the public at large. The most important components of these are called the 'primary financial statements' comprising the profit and loss account, balance sheet and cash flow. The statement of shareholders' equity might also be considered a fourth.
Professor Richard Wiseman suggests that 24% of people identify themselves as chronic procrastinators while humorously adding that this probably underestimates the scale of the problem since many others delayed filling in the form. Managing your time efficiently and doing tasks in a timely fashion is critical in business, so how do you prioritise your to-do list efficiently? The Eisenhower Matrix can help.
This article looks at four basic business structures - sole trader, partnership, limited liability partnership and limited company. In 90 seconds or less.