What's your most pressing management issue? We asked and you told us. In fact you are continuing to tell us even as you read this (if you'd like to weigh in right now just click here) in a novel surveying instrument from All Our Ideas.
Not a survey in the conventional sense, it allowed us to pose only a single question and asked you to choose between two alternatives. We began the process by suggesting a few alternatives ourselves — devising strategy, managing my boss, balancing work and home life, finding the right people for the job, not enough time — a frankly random mix of the specific and the general, of large enduring themes and small personal concerns. But the real value of the survey instrument is that it encourages you to go beyond the alternatives we suggest and propose your own. Which you have certainly done.
Right at this moment, the top responses are:
- I'd like to see leaders in an organization have the executive courage to make decisions and truly own the consequences (good, bad or neutral)
- Creating new good habits in the corporate culture
- How to create organizations that are capable of truly creative thought
- Getting investors and stakeholders to have more of a long-view perspective on strategy and investing, to develop new opportunities
- Keeping up with the day-to-day business while also thinking and planning strategically.
What to make of our results? It's difficult to draw any quantitative conclusions about how widely important these ideas are to you, since the results seem to change so dramatically so quickly. But as the world's largest room in which to hold a brainstorming session, it's pretty impressive, and it comes with some fairly nifty data-visualization tools into the bargain, all of which you can check out right here.
As in any good brainstorming session, the range of suggestions here are broad but also tend to cluster around some larger themes — in addition to leading and keeping up with change and finding the right talent, many were concerned fundamentally with finding balance — between the tactical and the strategic, the long and the short term, the personal and the professional. A number fall into the general category of accountability — for the environment, for the consequences of the decisions you make, for the welfare of the people you manage.
Perhaps most interesting, as in any brainstorming session, are the outliers, the ideas that didn't rise to the top — those of you who are most concerned not with your organizations but with keeping clients happy, with how to avoid fire-fighting, with the problem of mediocrity, with managing paradox, and (at least for us here, since it's so central to our mission) — ideas that stand the test of time. Please continue to tell us about your most presssing problems here — we're reading every one.
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