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Showing posts from March, 2010

The "Right" Customer

Lets assume that you have the perfect product. One that everyone needs. You've priced it right and everyone in the world can afford it. It works without errors and flaws and doesn't break and is extremely simple to use (while a smartphone is simple to use - its not necessarily cheap so finding that magic "widget" is probably a dream that will never come true!).
How much would you like to bet that you would still have customers complaining about it? Hard is it might be to believe the phrase -
"you can please most of the people some of the time and some of the people most of the time, but you can NEVER please all of the people all of the time!" - is unfortunately way too accurate.
What you will see and notice however is that the 80/20 rule (remember that? I mentioned it earlier here) applies in this like it does in most things. If you haven't read my post, allow me to paraphrase - the 80/20 rule (also known as the Pareto Principle) states that 80…

Dealing with Low Performers & Performance Issues

Why do we measure organizational performance? The first answers that pop into your head might be: You can’t manage what you don’t measureWhat you measure gets doneWe have to be accountableThey have to be held accountableThey told us to (I always like that one!)    Now what do you do if/when you have someone that is not meeting or achieving these standards while everyone else in your team is?

The first thing that must be realized is that as a manager the buck stops with you.  Its up to you transform these people and lead them in the right direction.  You cannot let low performers dictate the outcome of the team as a whole and as such the bar must remain at the level you have set.

It would be a big mistake to lower the bar in the interests of morale while sacrificing the requirements of the company.  By lowering the bar, you are only appealing to the elements of your team that are hopefully a minority.  Remember - you should always be aiming to reinforce positive behavior v.s. penalizing t…

Getting the job

OK, alot of my previous posts have stressed the importance of networking and CV reviews with regards to getting that next role.  What lots of candidates fail to account for is the actual importance of the interview itself assuming that their CV will "sell them" to the prospective employer.  It cannot be stressed enough that while your CV will get you into the door, it is only through an exceptional job interview that you will get hired!

You may find these related posts of interest:
Finding a Job Through Networking The Job Search Job Search, Hiring & Firing

With the current ratio of interviews to hires during this recession time, Employers can afford to be picky with the candidates that are walking through the door.  There are always more people looking for a job and most employers want to ensure that they are getting the best value for their money.  Generally in recessions, the ratio of job interviews to job offers is as high as 17-to-1 (this drops to 6-to-1 during the &quo…

The 80/20 Rule

If you've been in Tech Support or Help Desks for any length of time - especially from a management perspective you'll be extremely familiar with something called the 80/20 rule.  
Put simply it implies that 80% of your calls/contacts are generated from 20% of your issues.  If you are able to focus efforts on clearing up some of those 20%'ers you would have a significant impact on the overall volume that is coming in to your center (note, once you've fixed the 1st 20% - then you can do a similar analysis on the next batch and so on!).  
Now, while this is true from an "on the floor" perspective there has actually been a study done on this and this "rule" is actually known as the Pareto principle (sometimes also called the "law of the vital few" or the "principle of factor sparsity ).  While these names all sound really fancy - I think the 80/20 Rule is most descriptive of what it is.
The principle was actually suggested by Italian econom…