Thursday 13 March 2008

Creating inside tracks - managing business relationships

every executive needs ...
  • a relationship network in place when the time for action comes
  • the instinct to find shortcuts into the market place
  • the knowledge and experience to sort out blockages and problems
  • plus the ability to be positive and keep smiling at all times!

"for god's sake be interesting" Paul Cautley CMG DL - D Group Founder

Humphrey Walters - other quotes

'Think in ink'
Safety, Happy, Fast
Crisis team focus challenge and motivation 'look for the gap in the waves' -the way ahead

Leadership is about
- game of increments
- ruthless simplicity
- no dumb ideas

Management need to
- look after resources
- give hope
- show the way ahead; examples crack in the ice, waves
- think outcomes
- plan 'decompression' (post key challenge/success) - model it

- is only temporary
- if you give in - it will last for ever

Individuals in a team will make the difference
- thinking correctly under pressure
- goodbye to the normals

Tuesday 11 March 2008

Black Swan - the impact of the highly improbable

Nassim Nicolas Taleb

JHP: Everything it says it is on the cover. A great read and one that makes sense of so much....

Ultimate motivator - Go out and Make things Happen

People will
  • fight for a right
but will
  • die for a cause make (their) world a better place

from Sunday Telegraph 30/12/06


What irks Mr Walters is that much of the wisdom acquired during the Woodward reign at Twickenham is now being ignored. "It's very important to examine success," he says.
"There was no proper debrief after winning the rugby World Cup. Reports were written but they didn't ask for the view of some people on the bench, the groundsman, the bag man.

"Everybody looks at things differently and every view is just as important because it's a game of inches. Everybody brings an inch. It's about sticking them together." Mr Walters cites an example of how knowledge from the Woodward era has been jettisoned. "One of the things we did was to change our kit at half-time. Now it's not happening, or at least some players do and some don't. I noticed Pete Sampras changed his shirt on Centre Court, particularly when he was down. It was like saying to his opponent: 'Listen, mate, this game's just started for me.' So, when we ran out for the second half the opposition must have felt: 'Bloody hell, this is a new team.' The players also felt better, and if they'd had a bad first half it was like dumping that in the waste bin."

Such attention to detail was a crucial element in England's World Cup triumph. Sir Clive was dispatched to study training methods with the Denver Broncos, the American football club, while the players learnt about teamwork from the Royal Marines.

But underpinning everything was a sense of mission. "I said to Clive that we could do all this stuff but if we don't have the hearts and minds of the players then it's a waste of time," Mr Walters explains.
"What we had to do was create a cause, because people will fight for a right but they will die for a cause. We came up with the idea that our duty was to inspire the nation. That was our cause and everything sprung from that."

A bit of inspiration would not go amiss as another year of sporting failure beckons, though Mr Walter believes success will not come unless administrators or even the Government grasp the nettle. Leadership is the key.

"Our coaches are as good as anyone else's and we've got the players. We've got all the ingredients, and that is what is so sad. I think the general public are sick and tired of mediocrity but you can't just hope that something will happen. In business, you've got to go out and make things happen."

However this is not at any cost or just any cause - its still necessary to get a cause people will die for...

Soldier's Dream - Chris Hall

We never wish to fight
but we are willing to die
We die for a cause that's not our own
Many of us soldiers will never come home

We never wish to fight
but we die to protect your freedom
We die for a cause that's not our own
Many of us soldiers will never come home

We love our families, we love our country
We are willing to die for their protection
This is our cause, this is our own
A soldier's only dream is coming back home

Humphrey Walters - Building winning teams // followers' duties

Dream a lot – if you dream a lot, opportunities will pop out of the woodwork.
Don’t tell people that it is easy when it is not, say "It gets easy – but it’s tough to start with."

winner's code
  • punctuality - be 15 mins early land, 5 mins early sea
  • empathy
  • 'scuttlebutt' - don’t gossip, tell them straight
  • find heroes and celebrate
  • Leave each problem on the ‘wave behind’ – when you have faced a challenge, let it go
  • Winning is about doing 100 things 1% better, not 1 thing 100% better.

To build a better organisation, you need
  • a sense of excitement
  • a sense of belonging
  • a sense of performance
  • a sense of worth & value
If, an inspirational poem by Rudyard Kipling
Humphrey Walters used this to celebrate the English Rugby team winning the 2003 Rugby World Cup.

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master,
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ‘em up with worn-out tools:

If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them:

"Hold on!"If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And - which is more - you’ll be a Man, my son!

Humphrey was speaking at annual conference. He specialises in developing high performing teams and told about his experience on the 1996-7 BT Round the World Yacht Race and working with the English Rugby team until in 2003 it won the rugby World Cup.