Thursday, December 30, 2010

More on Global Management

Global Planning, eh? Did anyone tell the other guy?

Okay, now you are getting ready to plan globally. You are going to discuss:

Strategic Planning
Team Building
Market Penetration
The Visioning Process
Consensus Building
Project Management
and so on.

You will also consider financing, information technology, cloud computing, virtual servers, capital investment. You will achieve consensus the way others achieve nirvana. You will plan your work and work your plan.

You will fail.


You forgot to tell the other guy.

Read on.

Too many of our efforts are designed to fail. We make great plans, however we fail to understand that what we want to do and the way we want to do it is not the way things are done globally. Also, the global landscape is changing faster than we are.

The best analogy I can come up with in such short time is this:

"If you are going hunting, you get up, get dressed, get your gear, and go out into the field. If you are being hunted, you move more quickly." Slim Fairview

Others are on the move. China, Japan, South Korea, Russia, India, Pakistan, Turkey, Brazil, Argentina, and so on.

Some have not been emerging nations in many years. Then there are the emerging nations. Who will be doing business with whom?

In too many nations, horizontal management does not exist. And there is a reason for this. If you want to debate the causes, effects and remedies, you will be spinning your wheels. Other people don't want to talk about it.

In this country, we are charmed by the promises of horizontal management. In addition, we are always delighted to talk about it. You don't believe me?

Consult. Syn. Confer with, confer, confabulate, confab, and chew the fat.*

We are hunting for business globally. What about people in other nations? Well, what about people in other nations?

In other nations, those being hunted by poverty, disease, unrest, and a fierce competition for food, have found that things move along more quickly with a vertical management style.

People with very limited resources do share with those among them who have equally limited resources. They are not about to share with you.

MicroFinance $10.00 to the road to prosperity

Then there are those in the global community who are coming into their own in a big way. Imagine Russia becoming a capitalist country; China, dominating global manufacturing, sales, finance, currency; India a powerhouse of technology. Just don't sit around letting your imagination run amok.

Our business culture has been transmogrified. The change is the difference between the ideologue and the technocrat. (Do not confuse the technocrat with the techno-pimple. He is more focuses on pedantry.)

Transmogrified: Altered, transformed, or mutated into a form that is grotesque or amusing
The solution, however, is the problem. That is, as we look to solutions we find that the advise we get is descriptive (see above) and not prescriptive. The articles for we are told to read tell us what the problem is. Some go a step further. Some tell us:

This is what you did wrong.
This is what you should have done.
This is what you should do next time.

The tone:

Client: "But I'm in a jam now!"

Consultant: "What do you want me to do? Solve your problems for you?

The aforementioned bulleted list

Strategic Planning
Team Building
Market Penetration
The Visioning Process
Consensus Building
Project Management

has to be handled from a different viewpoint--many different viewpoints. It is necessary to engage many people in the discussions--in the many different discussion.

The expression "The Friendly Way" has been too often interpreted as promoting collusion. People who want to do business with you don't want to compete with you. They want to cooperate with you. (Hint: it takes at least two to cooperate.)

Team building may mean bringing people to agreement. It may also mean bringing agreeable people together. The friendly way would suggest that agreeable people means people who know what they are doing. There won't be consensus building because the goal has been spelled out and each person knows what he or she is responsible for doing.

The visioning process. There is no nice way to say "baloney" unless the word sandwich is attached.

Too often, the visioning process is used to bring different ideas to the fore. The ideas can be discussed. People can agree. Everyone can take his or her share of ownership in the project. This builds commitment to the project and to achieving the goal. (I not only heard this stuff before people started saying it, I heard this stuff before the people who are saying it ever heard it in the first place.)

There is a temptation to believe that people in other nations are naive. However, you are not going to convince them that they were the ones who thought up your idea and therefore should want to work to make it happen.

In this country, when other people listen, we tend to think that they like what we are saying. In other countries, when people listen, it is possible that they are merely being polite. I know this because my parents taught me to be polite.

Instead of the visioning process and shared goals, think in terms of finding out what other people want, the steps necessary to achieve this outcome, and how to make it mutually beneficial.

I am not now purporting to know all the answers. I am merely setting an agenda for action (as opposed to an agenda for discussion) so corporate executives can assign people to the tasks necessary to do business globally.



Copyright (c) 2010 Slim Fairview

Leadership and/or Management

Leadership is innate. Project management can be perfected, perhaps through practise; however, we all know those who have done things badly for most of their lives and careers.

Perfecting project management skills is a job. You have to work at it. However, those with innate leadership abilities, (...the dunces shall rise up in a confederacy...) will improve their project management skills over time by their viewpoint.

I tend to work best when working alone. I have been looked to, to solve a problem or two, which I did. So much of it is common sense. The rest is in a book. (You can download 300 free project management templates) You can fill in the blanks.

However, the real problem with any project is that it involves dealing with many people each with his or her agenda. Too often, that agenda only includes achieving the goal rather than being focused on achieving the goal.

Consultants and committees seem to be the way to go. To the former, I reference Bob Dylan: "You never turned around to see the frowns on the jugglers and the clowns who did tricks for you." The latter I refute with one word. Congress.



Copyright (c) 2010 Slim Fairview