Posts Tagged ‘Phil Miller’
The comment was made by Carlson School alum Sam Rosen while talking about entrepreneurship and risk at our “offroaders’ symposium” a few weeks ago. The event was a pilot attempt at better supporting more diverse set of students’ interests and needs in pursuing “non-traditional” career opportunities. The building was filled with students seeking “something different” and alums and area executives who had companies or roles that are off the typical b-school radar (think NGOs, smaller companies etc). Read the rest of this entry »
Sometimes things are so simple, but we either try to make them more complicated than they need to be or can’t see with the clarity we’d like to. I was reminded of this at a recent lunch with a mentor of mine when I asked the obvious question; “what are your keys to success?”
My friend is a retired senior executive who had sustained success in multiple businesses across his long career at a global F100 company. He drove results while being highly respected by everyone as near as I can tell. I’d point out that results and respect are not always correlated, by my friend was able to do it without leaving a trail of bodies. Read the rest of this entry »
I was chatting with a friend at a church social about networking and meeting people when he popped this gem out. I thought this was a perfect summary of what I’ve referred to before as “networking with content”.
This topic comes up for me a lot, as I work with a number of new students every year. We preach that networking is critical to success in their search and discovery process (and it is). But we NEVER mean “go have a bunch of empty, value destroying meetings with important potential supporters.” Schmoozing doesn’t work in the long run.
So what does “effective” networking look like and what is relevant “content”? (Hint: it doesn’t mean you have to have vast experience or knowledge, but it does mean you have to be interested and interesting…) Read the rest of this entry »
A key challenge we face as professionals and leaders is how to assess performance of both ourselves and our teams. We can’t be everywhere all the time to observe and as hard as I try I can’t really watch myself objectively. There isn’t an “eye in the sky” observing us and our teams to allow clear evidence for performance. So how can we get close to “objective” assessment? I don’t have any perfect answers, but here are a few ideas.
This idea crystallized for me a few weeks ago when Shannon Sharpe (retired NFL tight end, now CBS analyst) said something on the NFL pre game show that struck me. He was referring to a former coach who used to say “I see better than I hear.” He went on to explain his coach’s observation that we say a lot of stuff, but what we do is more telling. In the NFL they say “film doesn’t lie”. You can tell me all you want to about how well you did, but how did the play/game actually go? NFL games have the full field view and you can see everything everyone did. No hiding. Read the rest of this entry »
I recently returned from a gathering of colleagues who run MBA programs. As I was jotting down notes and discussing insights gathered with my team, it occurred to me how glad I was that we have occasional opportunities to get outside our “bubble” and hear what others are doing. It reinforced the importance of challenging your thinking and creating space to allow exposure some external ideas.
So what can exiting the bubble briefly do for you? Read the rest of this entry »
A few recent interactions reminded me that you never really know the impact you have on another person. So at the risk of sounding like my grandmother: make an effort to always be gracious and supportive. It’s not always easy and sometimes is impractical, but do it anyway and I think you’ll see benefits on many fronts. And even if not, it makes your world a little nicer. A few examples…
Cameraderie when you feel alienated
I was struck by this in a recent conversation with a former MBA classmate. We had been friendly in school, but weren’t close and had lost touch since we graduated. During school we’d had some lively debates about issues from our classes and had some shared interests. But our contact was fairly limited to class and the MBA lounge.
It turns out my friend felt like an outsider in our program, in part because he was approaching an MBA as a learning journey. MBAs are often very pragmatic about their program. Their journey can be very much about the explicit opportunities they seek. It’s not always about “the journey”. My friend was more about the journey than many of our classmates and so was I. Read the rest of this entry »
Another school year comes to a close today. For the class of 2012, I wanted to share my sincere congratulations and a few hopes for you.
First – the congratulations. You have worked hard for several years to complete a difficult course of work. You and your loved ones should heartily celebrate a job well done and degree earned with a lot of hard work and long days/nights.
Second – Thank you! I always feel privileged to get to work with smart, energetic young professionals early in their career. Your energy and enthusiasm continues to inspire me. I also want to thank you for your sustained efforts over the last year and a half. Your work has helped your clients be more successful, build the school’s reputation and build your skill set. It means a lot to them, but in particular to me.
Now, my hopes & wishes for you: Read the rest of this entry »
Here are a few of my management, consulting and critical thinking & communication posts organized topically and in relative sequence (where appropriate).
Communication & Persuasion
Recently we talked about the importance of writing down your perception of any problem you are trying to solve. This time, I’ll focus on taking that problem and building out an analytical framework.
When I teach this material in my Critical Thinking class, I emphasize the efficiency and clarity you gain from a structured approach to problem solving. If writing the problem down (and gaining buy-in) is the first step, then defining (and refining) an approach is the second.
So why should I care about building an “Approach”?
Last time I emphasized the importance of defining “what is the problem/where are we going” by defining your problem and showing it to others to test and refine that definition. It’s critical, but not sufficient. Read the rest of this entry »
Friend Lars Leafblad and I had been kicking around ideas about how to collaborate digitally given our many overlapping interests when Lars suggested we look at each others’ resumes and read them as if we didn’t know each other and were looking to evaluate them for a position. I thought it was a clever idea and what follows is our exchange.
Ya’ll know me and many of you may know Lars, but in case, his profile can be found here. Big take-away is he is an executive search leader who sees a lot of experienced resumes, particularly in the public and NGO spaces.
Note: I tried to figure out how to make the resumes cleverly appear in the post, but for readability sake you’ll have to click and they’ll open in a separate window.
Phil’s Impression of Lars’ Resume
As always for me, everything depends on context. I’m going to assume I’m looking at Lars’ resume as if I were another search firm looking to hire him. I’ll comment where I’d ask really different questions if I were hiring him for a different role (like leading an NGO). Read the rest of this entry »